Here’s an old find (2018) that I recently rediscovered: Saxophonist Ellery Eskelin as the guest soloist with a chamber music ensemble.
Trumpeter Dave Ballou composed the piece, and we’re seeing it as performed at a University of Michigan recital.
The video drops us into the start of the third movement, an onrush of strings working in different tempos. That motif shows up later as well, but overall the piece is contemplative, with lots of blank or nearly blank space for Eskelin to ruminate.
During the same visit, Eskelin performed with a string quartet, a piece written by Andrew Bishop. The sax part is well integrated, amplifying the mood of the strings rather than, say, cutting across them. But he does get a few moments where the string settle into a drone (a pedal tone?) as a backdrop for a short saxophone statement. You’ll find those at around 3:15 and 5:15.
Incidentally, Eskelin has a deeply thoughtful and informative blog of his own that began in 2010. Highly recommended. Check out this long essay about an unreleased 1979 album (not one of his) that intersected a crucial juncture in Eskelin’s early, pre-free-jazz musical journey — and how Eskelin’s relationship with one of the musicians led to a hunt to unearth the album’s history and finally share it with the world. It’s a fascinating story.