May 5, 2011

Too Sexy for Duffield

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You’ve seen Sergio Flores, the suspender-clad saxophonist, terrorizing shopping malls and public places all over America. Yesterday, I sat down with Cornell’s own sexy sax man, Will Edmonds ’13, to talk about pranks and Earth Wind & Fire.

Sun: Give me the basic rundown: major, year, hometown, etc.

Will Edmonds: I’m from Princeton Junction, New Jersey. Currently a Sophomore, Class of 2013 in ILR.

Sun: How long have you been playing tenor saxophone?

W.E.: I started on alto in the 5th grade, then in the 7th grade I made jazz band, but I made it on tenor. One of my father’s friends actually had a tenor, so he gave it to me as a gift, and then I just played tenor. Then I stopped playing tenor, and went back to alto. Then I came [to Cornell] and the Cornell Wind Ensemble had too many altos and not enough tenors, so I just went back to playing tenor again.

Sun: What’s your favorite saxophone song?

W.E.: Well, “Careless Whisper” has a pretty simple riff, and it took me only a few minutes to get. But I really like this Earth, Wind and Fire song called “Reasons.” My parents introduced it to me, and I’ve been trying to learn it ever since. It’s got this amazing saxophone solo where the lead singer sings all these notes, then the sax plays what he sings. It’s the coolest thing ever. Whenever I feel like quitting or don’t want to practice, I listen to it.

Sun: What was the best place you pulled your prank off?

W.E.: Personally, I thought the best place was Duffield. It’s not in the video, but it’s the place where I had the most fun and felt comfortable playing as loud as I could and in the most annoying manner. People were laughing, people were clapping, people were taking videos — it just felt like everybody else was enjoying it. I kinda enjoyed getting kicked out of Mann; I really wanted to be able to get to the middle though, and stand on one of the tables and play there. I got by the security guard for a second, but in the background of the video there’s this guy about seven feet tall, 300 pounds coming right at me, so I’m like, “Alright, I’ll turn around.” I was evading them with a few spin moves. It was hard to play like that.

Sun: It must be hard to hold it together in a situation like that. Do you ever laugh while you’re playing?

W.E.: When I first got into that classroom in Upson and started climbing up on the table, you could hear a few squeaks where I’m just laughing. After that, though, I got used to it.

Sun: You’re one of the few people to pull off a prank at Cornell in a long time. Why do you think there aren’t more pranks at Cornell, for such a large school?

W.E.: Just because the environment’s so serious. When I was first thinking about doing it, I was worried that people would get really angry, that I’d get in trouble. Like in the video where the one librarian said she was going to call the Cornell Police on me, I thought, “Maybe I should be rethinking what I’m doing right now.” But I think people just need to relax. When I was playing people were relaxed. We need more of that, no one really wants to step up to the plate and just do something crazy.

Sun: Do you think the Clocktower prank will ever be topped?

W.E.: I don’t think so. That’s just part of what Cornell is. It will never be topped. But that’s not going to stop me from doing fun things and letting other people enjoy them too.

Sun: What if you and the original Sexy Sax Man, Sergio Flores, met up for a duet? Would you be down for that?

W.E.: I would definitely be down. My friend showed me some YouTube trends for “sexy sax man,” and there’s one here, one at Rutgers, one at USC and one somewhere else.

Sun: What if all the Sexy Sax Men united?

W.E.: I think we should have a huge gathering and just go through one town or one area and play everywhere. I feel honored to be a part of the Sexy Sax Man movement. It’d be hilarious.

Sun: Any shoutouts?

W.E.: Shout out to my good friends for helping me put the video together. They know who they are.

Sun: Any plans for future pranks?

W.E.: The Sexy Sax Man will strike again. I’m not going to say where or when, but he will strike again. I’ll leave it at that.

Original Author: Patrick Cambre