Monday, March 30, 2015
.....Man, I don't know where to start. "Criss Cross Live At The Red Sea " is a masterpiece. Marty has done it again, one of those CD's I will treasure forever and listen to over and over again. Why? There are few times in the history of mankind that we can sit back and allow ourselves to be manipulated in notes and tones by a pure mad man, brilliant tenor saxophonist, woodwind player and jazz legend Marty Krystall. Marty's playing allows the mind to travel to the brink of truth and reality and come back unharmed and ... enlightened.If Monk was still on this Earth, Marty Krystall would be his tenor player- This is the most creative jazz saxophone playing you'll hear today.The greatest sound, ideas and real jazz feel. It's inspiring to hear Marty just do what is supposed to be done, Thank God for this band ... they make the jazz world a better place. You can hear the reality in how they play and also the way they approach this music head on. The music is clear and concrete,the tunes are amazing. Listen to this CD by MARTY KRYSTALL,BUELL NEIDLINGER,HUGH SCHICK,BILL CUNLIFFE AND BILLY OSBORNE... it is a joy. There's no reason not to own this CD...this is what jazz is and should be. .........Tim Price / Blogging for D'Addario Woodwinds.
Friday, March 13, 2015
My philosophy on any students musical growth is that they should learn how to think, listen and talk about music. If you think about music, then it follows that you can easily talk about it. Listening is the most important part ! Without ears, music would not exist. If I had to pick the most valuable musical tool for musical growth, it would be personal taste. That seperates a Stan Getz from Sonny Rollins. If you think about it, we all possess it. Years ago, I asked Charlie Mariano if a particular note "worked" on a modal tune we were working on; his response was, "only if you like it". Personal taste for sure.Personal musical taste expands infinitely. This allows for musical evolution. ~ I believe in positive thinking and growing in music is a life long process that shouldn't stop and each stage has its own validity. Teaching is a necessary undertaking on my part to preserve creative music as an art form as well as my own development as a musician. I consider myself privileged to be a musician and my strong desire to teach a gift. My strongest hope is for musical evolution for the students,and music. That means new teaching concepts involving interactive playing, getting students to rely on intuition while creating.Be it a Rubank book with a young student or opening the creative doors with a bassoon student or working on jazz ideas or rock styles. Growing in music is a life long process that shouldn't stop and each stage has its own validity.You need to listen and learn. Then experiment, listen, and learn some more. With personal taste paving the way. Of course, music is the real teacher... if you listen! This works with a 5th grader through an adult. Remember,music is a life long process that shouldn't stop and each stage has its own validity ! IT'S EASY, Strength in numbers for music and band.Not only is there concert band, wind quintets, jazz band, marching band, music appreciation but also the rebound of these subjects. Listen here- if we don't say something people assume it's cool to keep cutting the creative arts in education out. LET THEM KNOW, NOW, IT'S NOT! Studying music enhances children's ability to perform better at other subjects, improves coordination and boosts self-esteem. They learn to harmonize with others not just on a musical level. Music was part of mainstream education throughout most of history. Through junior high upwards music is just as or even more important in the people's continuing education. Music is_THE_ universal language. By doing this students can pursue passions and learn how to share their thoughts with others directly in a healthy and peaceful way. Through my private teaching, I see many students fall in love with the many forms of music. It starts with just learning the basics. Certain students started on flute or clarinet and went on to become orchestral bassoonists or jazz saxophonists,recording engineers and also music publishers. It's a great feeling. Music, it’s a magical art form that’s universally and timelessly loved. And because of this overwhelming love of music, it has become an integral part of everyday life. Cutting that from education is WRONG! THINK ABOUT IT- one cannot visit a grocery store, an elevator, watch a TV show, movie, or a wide variety of others venues without hearing a familiar song. And, I’m certain that if asked right now, most people can name off the top of their heads, a significant list of favorite tunes.Without early exposure to music in the schools, we will also lose aspects like this for future generations. I've seen a quality education for students actively engaged in learning, strong relationships between teachers and students,hundreds of high-quality teachers with high expectations for all students, effective and strategic use of technology in the classroom, instruction for both remediation and for gifted students.It's inspiring and an asset to the young minds and ears that are in the classrooms. Not to forget a ripple effect that will affect school instrument programs, rentals,music publishers, instrument sales, music shops, music studios and more! Stopping music programs will basically stomp on things like this and destroy years of hard work. Ripple effect indeed! You got to speak up-and speak up loud and strong now. MUSIC COUNTS! At this point in time in jazz, everything seems to be published and everything seems to almost be written down. We are in a great educational state. But where are the people who are really reaching within and trusting themselves to their own creative muse? This is the element that I am addressing here. As a student of music, take some time to think about using your intuition. As Bird said, "First you master the music, then you master your horn, then you forget all that shit and just play!" We need to keep that in the front part of our minds and make that a slogan similar to the many people who look to their "third eye." As you see, I'm trying to point out a parallel in creative paths. It's not easy. But it is easy when you bring it into your own consciousness and try to practice these aspects. Sure, licks, lines, inversions, and all that good stuff is of paramount importance. But let us not forget to keep the magic in the music. Give all that you have and you shall receive more than you can imagine experiencing when playing jazz! Thanks and lets hope that music will survive in these school programs. Till next week, work hard and practice harder- Tim Price
Friday, February 27, 2015
In thinking about Steve Marcus'and the effects that he had on this music. I wonder how many people would think of him as a component in early Mike Mantler "Escalator Over The Hill" projects with Carla Bley. Or in 1965 or 66 playing hair raising Coltrane-esque tenor with Stan Kenton's more progressive bands with Dee Barton on drums. That band should be talked about in the same breath as Maria Schneider's and Gil Evans from a stepping over the dotted line standpoint. Marcus was also one of the first guys playing Soprano in some of those situations...and with his own concept and sound. I remember once with Coryell Marcus played so incredibly on Larry's music and I couldn't for the life of me why he never got the proper kudos from the jazz press. In a way, he should have been bigger than anyone considering he was one of the originators and propagators of that genre. Marcus was smart, he made a living as a musician, he made people around him feel like playing. Some of the best times I saw Buddy Rich in later years was when Steve Marcus started to play and turned the heat up so high, that you could see Buddy smiling and digging that they were going to be getting into something. Though Miles Davis introduced a fine-tuned version of fusion to the world with Bitches Brew, he was by no means its primary architect. The concept of a union between jazz and rock music had been knocked around for several years prior to Brew's release by such jazz musicians as Gary Burton, Larry Coryell, Steve Marcus, Jerry Hahn, Charles Lloyd, as well as Soft Machine. Sadly, many of their recordings have become lost with both the passage of time ; only recently has this fervor calmed enough for the music of this era to be properly reevaluated. The Water label is helping out immensely in this regard by reissuing such albums as Tomorrow Never Knows and others originally released by the Vortex label. Herbie Mann, one of the oft-overlooked godfathers of this scene, founded the label; in addition to employing scenesters Miroslav Vitous and Sonny Sharrock in his own group, Mann used his stature with Atlantic to form this subsidiary label (as well as its successor Embryo). Another guy who INVESTED in the people he believed in. These Vortex records were right on target with the " JAM BAND " train of thought playing that was also happening today- yet it was decades before. He founded a way of playing that was going on in the mid 60s. I saw him on TV with Stan Kenton in the 60s and he absolutely killed it. Later at Berklee I heard "jazz in the classroom " records he was on & realized he played this way from the jump. His message was there. NOT, ,just notes but a passion and a true message in every solo. As the old cats would say - HE WAS REACHING FOR SOMETHING. "The Beatles made kids of us all," Steve Marcus, told the writer Stuart Nicholson five years ago. "I had spent much of my previous years completely enveloped in Coltrane and Bartok and really heavy, profound music - and then when the Beatles came along I just felt like a kid again." Marcus was a powerful saxophonist. He was also in at the beginning of jazz-rock fusion - involved in pioneering groups attempting to marry the melodic sophistication and spontaneity of jazz with rock and funk dance rhythms. Marcus, visionary and innovative drummer Bob Moses, guitarist Larry Coryell and New Zealand-born pianist Mike Nock were young jazz-obsessed neighbors in New York in 1967, gripped by the idea of joining the Beatles and the Byrds' infectious song-hooks to the transcendental energy and virtuosity of Coltrane, their hero and spiritual model. Marcus was to go on to play much more orthodox jazz - notably in Woody Herman's swing orchestra and with star big-band drummer Buddy Rich - but he was a key participant in early fusion, leading one of the first groups to play it when he ran the Count's Rock Band on and off for three years from 1967. Marcus was born in New York's Bronx. He began on clarinet but switched to saxophone at the age of 15. Joe Viola the reed teacher at Berklee then, asked me what I was listening to. I told him these Steve Marcus records were things I was finding, and I never heard anything like it. At that point he told me about Steve being around Boston. So, Joe Viola joined Jane and I a few times at the Jazz Workshop, on Boylston St, to hear Steve. It was then I realized what an open mind Joe Viola had, yet I think that was something that was essential to all of us who came in Joes studio. Imagine though when Marcus saw Joe, and sat and talked about things with Joe, and told him about the new Beatles record " Abbey Road " and also loving the Coltrane release " Sun Ship". A conversation I'll never forget, nor will I forget the after the gig coffee/ muffin talk with Joe Viola about the gig we heard and the great stuff he heard Coryell play. Not only was Steve a great exciting player, but he had what all great jazz musicians should have...HE KNEW HOW TO PLAY A BALLAD. In the world of jazz...there's a lot of great guys out there today playing the instrument...but the muscularity and creative spark of a Steve Marcus will be missed. This guy never headlined any major jazz festivals, BUT - what he did was something even greater than that...he played everyday with a leader that would never accept anything less than bloodcurdling solos. He also traveled with Coryell city to city in vans and station wagons playing the clubs that are only talked about anymore, that hired jazz six nights a week. I can confess for one seeing him night to night that this guy never missed. In Boston- at the old " Jazz Workshop" club on Boylston St, my girlfriend Jane and I would go to catch Coryell every night. The cover charge was really pretty low for the early 70's, and every night Marcus tore the club up!!! Talk about burning. Damn was he on fore. What I saw was a guy who HAD TO PLAY. He had no other choice in life, that was his destiny. and that my friends is something that no critic or jazz magazine has any control over. That's why since hearing Steve Marcus when I was a kid in the 60's , I followed every note and every step of his career I could. This man had a destiny...and it was adding something to the music and the saxophone. and he sure did and we are all lucky for it. The other thing that I thought of immediately was I used to go every night when he played Coryell at the Jazz Workshop in Boston. One night on a Saturday I came in with my horn, cause I had an early strip lounge gig , I had no intention of asking to sit in or even getting close to the bandstand with my horn. I had talked to Steve a lot that week as well as Larry. Steve saw I was carrying my horn and said "Just come up and play something" realizing that even though I was way out of my league - the learning experience would carry me for the rest of my life. THIS WAS 1970 ! I WAS 18. I learned something that day from Steve Marcus, I also learned that every time you play, the next day is even better and there is even more to learn. But if you don't take the chance you'll never realize some of the things you're trying to accomplish, or need to. I'll never forget him for showing me that valuable lesson. He lived not far from me, in New Hope, PA which was at one point in the 60's a musicians community. He was a road rat who was never home - an unbelievable player who I doubt anybody will ever forget. I sure won't. KNOW YOUR HISTORY!!!!!!! STEVE MARCUS WAS A MAJOR INNOVATIVE PLAYER. Listen to him on you tube and learn! Till ext week....keep on - - TIM PRICE
Monday, February 23, 2015
To arrive at a personal destination you have to invest in yourself. Study, practice and life. Think about this great quote as well ; The characteristics of a good musician can be summarized as follows: 1. A well-trained ear 2. A well-trained intelligence 3. A well-trained heart 4. A well-trained hand. Seems like the most practical, right? Let me go further in the essence of jazz, there must be a constant equilibrium. As soon as one lags behind or rushes ahead, there is something wrong. Check out the music of the of the 20th century, from twelve tone Schoenbergian music to Broadway; from “Mac the Knife” to operas; from Brecht to Lotte Lenya;Hendrix, Satie, Debussy,The Beatles, composers, arrangers, anyone and anything prolific and interesting to you. By accepting that challenge with an individualistc, interpretive approach,you will broaden and deepened YOUR artistic core as an improvisational musician. Study, listen well to the association of how rather than what. In other words don’t let a musical idea,vision or concept get borne out of the fingers rather than the music itself, and the try to keep the highest musical value or useful when searching for oneself.Be the best YOU that is available at the moment. After all,our goal is creativity and the use of the imagination. We are trying to enter the realm of feelings and emotions through music, and to arrive at a point where your fingers go where the ear dictates.Hopefully this blog can instigate the artistic process in an attempt to have a coherent and unified vision of what an art form concerns. Play, study and approach what you do to the maximum. Look for inspiration beyond your own instrument. Think about it....see you next week- Tim Price
Wednesday, February 11, 2015
Creativity....You can only foster it. “How do you teach creativity?” It seems obvious that creativity is teachable because there are classes for it, right? Sure, they teach fundamentals and techniques as well as expose you to different styles and artists, but that’s all to harness creativity. Most of these students attend these schools because they’re already creative or at least have an interest in it. If we were to go off of my observations, we’ll have to address a thousand-year old debate: nature vs. nurture. I believe that it’s 50/50 in that your creativity is already inside you and your life experiences help you to tap into it and hone it. You can show someone techniques or try to inspire them with work from the masters. You can give someone the tools to be creative, but if they don’t have the talent or at least the passion for it, then you got some bridges to cross. I’d like to think that we’re not all blank pegs. I’d like to think that we each have the makings of some sort of square, circle, triangle, or whatever unique shape, and that life will sharpen us into more solid shapes until we fit into the hole we’re meant to go through in this world.So I could be wrong about everyone being creative. Heck, I could be wrong about all this. But what I do know is that we’re all gifted in something. So I think to truly “learn” creativity, in whatever form you construe it to be, it has to be a part of your life’s purpose. All serious musicians have felt this way as they progress through their journey of improving their musicianship. As musicians we LOVE music so much and we care very deeply about how we sound.So, when we don’t sound as good as we want to it can be very emotionally and spiritually draining. Our ego and pride can play tricks on us and be quite cruel. As a result, these types of bad experiences can quickly put us in a musical rut and really play a number on our spirit, our creativity, and our motivation to practice.This can create a dilemma. You see as jazz musicians, we are improvisers by nature. We are constantly exploring the unexplored, experimenting, and trying new things.Most people think creativity is about freedom. Freedom paralyzes. Too much freedom in Jazz, provided too many options, too many variables, too many solutions.That limitation actually spawned amazing creativity,and more. The path to your life's work as a musician is both difficult and mysterious, which is why few finish the journey.Creativity and joy await you.Remember the search begins with passion but does not end there. Only when our interests connect with the needs of the world do we begin living for a larger purpose. Those who experience this intersection experience something exceptional and enviable.Though it is rare, this is attainable by anyone brave enough to try. We all see that some students are more creative. Many educators assume that creative thinking is an enigma and a gift (or a curse). They believe that by luck or by chance some people are naturally creative. Some colleagues tell me that creative thinking cannot be taught. While I am thankful for all good gifts, I do not depend on gifts alone. I find that new thinking habits can be nurtured and developed in myself and in others. I find that a change in student thinking habits and thinking modes is most apt to happen if appropriate teaching habits are cultivated and learned. But remember keep an open mind, and I promise you won't be disappointed! See you next week....and keep continuing the stream of consciousness further - - TIM PRICE - - - this week's listening suggestion- - Miles Davis - The Complete In A Silent Way Sessions [1080p - Full Album]- https://video.search.yahoo.com/video/play;_ylt=A2KLqIJICNxUbmEA6hz7w8QF;_ylu=X3oDMTByZWc0dGJtBHNlYwNzcgRzbGsDdmlkBHZ0aWQDBGdwb3MDMQ--?p=Miles+Davis+In+a+silent+way+full+album+you+tube&vid=1dfd098e54b64117c142e016a90e8ecf&l=3%3A29%3A10&turl=http%3A%2F%2Fts2.mm.bing.net%2Fth%3Fid%3DVN.608044838455083661%26pid%3D15.1&rurl=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DgxJ4tocpIp4&tit=Miles+Davis+-+The+Complete+In+A+Silent+Way+Sessions+%5B1080p+-+Full+Album%5D&c=0&sigr=11bvm10e9&sigt=128nkkb65&sigi=11rflbj79&age=1365531089&fr2=p%3As%2Cv%3Av&hsimp=yhs-001&hspart=mozilla&tt=b
Monday, January 19, 2015
To arrive at a personal destination you have to invest in yourself. Study, practice and life. Think about this great quote as well ; The characteristics of a good musician can be summarized as follows: 1. A well-trained ear 2. A well-trained intelligence 3. A well-trained heart 4. A well-trained hand. Seems like the most practical, right? Let me go further in the essence of jazz, there must be a constant equilibrium. As soon as one lags behind or rushes ahead, there is something wrong. Check out the music of the of the 20th century, from twelve tone Schoenbergian music to Broadway; from “Mac the Knife” to operas; from Brecht to Lotte Lenya;Hendrix, Satie, Debussy, Cecil Taylor, composers, arrangers, anyone and anything prolific and interesting to you. By accepting that challenge with an individualistc, interpretive approach,you will broaden and deepened YOUR artistic core as an improvisational musician. Study, listen well to the association of how rather than what. In other words don’t let a musical idea,vision or concept get borne out of the fingers rather than the music itself, and the try to keep the highest musical value or useful when searching for oneself.Be the best YOU that is available at the moment. After all,our goal is creativity and the use of the imagination. We are trying to enter the realm of feelings and emotions through music, and to arrive at a point where your fingers go where the ear dictates.Hopefully this blog can instigate the artistic process in an attempt to have a coherent and unified vision of what an art form concerns. Play, study and approach what you do to the maximum. Look for inspiration beyond your own instrument. Check out the trio I speak of as well. LISTENING IS PRACTICE TOO!!! Tracking is the ability to listen to yourself. This is one of the most crucial things in melodic playing. Tracking is the ability to identify your own ideas and build on them. Music is not the combination of as many different ideas as possible in the shortest amount of time, (e.g. playing a lot of notes fast and all over the place) but, the flow and elaboration of a few ideas in a logical and coherent manner. The secret of tracking is to listen to yourself. Again, each idea should have a beginning and an end. Pause and listen to your last idea. Your next idea should be related to the last. Whether you repeat a rhythm, note, shape, or even stop and begin with a new idea, this will help you to direct your lines and phrases into a specific area. What you will hear coming out of yourself will be your own musical ideas. They are shaped by your feelings and the interactions of the people you are playing with, as well as your technical condition. All this will grow richer as you study more and practice harder and learn the repertoire. The secret is to create in the now, and not simply play all your memorized licks. The more you practice, the more you will be able to hear, and your abilities as a jazz improviser will grow and expand. Remember, what you hear is more important than what you know. SUGGESTED LISTENING- CHARLIE PARKER ON DIAL. Volume 8 Recorded: Nov 8, 1947 – Sep 1948 The final volume of the series featured tracks taken primarily from a radio broadcast on November 8, 1947, where Parker played with Barry Ulanov and His All-Star Metronome Jazzmen. The group featured Bauer on guitar, Allen Eager on tenor saxophone,John LaPorta on clarinet, Fats Navarro on trumpet, Tommy Potter on double bass, Buddy Rich on drums, Tristano on piano, and, singing on "Everything I Have Is Yours", Sarah Vaughan. Additional material was taken from a set with Tadd Dameron's Orchestra, featuring performances by Eager and Gray. LISTEN TO JOHN LA PORTA....On clarinet. One of the greatest in jazz clarinet and the teacher at Berklee who took the time to get "tracking" into my mind set as a young player/student. This man, played with Mingus and Bird. Hope this helps you open some new doorways in your playing. I suggest if you want some freedom and personal forward motion you try this for a week: turn off the TV and computer games, use the phone and text only when necessary, and spend the rest of the time doing things that make you think, feel, create or anything that shows an active involvement and appreciation of you life. It's way off the hook, people are talking on the phone in restaurants instead of enjoying the meal they just ordered. Musicians and students need to get their life in order. I've thought and researched it- in one year the average person watches about 1200 hours of TV. Think of what could be learned in 1200 hours in one year. One could become competent on their instrument, and lots more. It's very staggering, and a form of freedom I enjoy. For musicians, you also will reach a moment of clarity and understand time needs to be allocated to insure mastery. As you start the process of practicing thoughtfully you will be able to gauge how much time it takes to accomplish your goals.When outside diversions and distractions are removed then you get down to the real nitty gritty of your journey. Thus begins a new world, watch what happens. In a week there are 168 hours. Most people work about 40-50 hours and sleep fifty to sixty hours. That leaves over 50 hours of loose time. SEE YOU AT NAMM 2015......Let's make 2015 the one...Tim Price
Tuesday, January 13, 2015
This is a great album and shows Alex at his best with world class musicians! This is another illustration of a player who is really playing at a high level, and deserves attention for not only being true to tradition but also the art of real jazz.. His style is beautiful- he sure sounds like he's having fun too.His playing is quintessentially modern. Alex and his NYQ give this recording an austere clarity of classic perfection, the feel is there and so is the quality of the band. In a word... clarity. If you want to hear something truly genuine, if you want to immerse yourself in some beautiful music, listen to this. I'd add that this one is a very well recorded album as well. His sound is truly focused and very fresh. The album Alex Terrier New York Quartet Featuring Kenny Barron is available now- right here - http://www.alexterriermusic.com/alex-terrier-nyq-featuring-kenny-barron Alex made his mark with this one...probably his best yet,a classic,it catches every mood and rises to the top of the new releases... you just can't put it down. Check out the nice rapport he has with Kenny Barron,really developed lines, phrasing and focused solos. I am a huge Kenny Barron fan, and to me Kenny is one of the best jazz has to offer.His comping and mastery of making the music speak is a life lesson. What a beautiful player! ALEX IS IMPRESSIVE...Alex Terrier was born in Paris, France, in 1980. He didn't grow up in a musical environment, but "the day I sat down to the piano was the first step to a life long journey into the world of music" Alex says. Studying classical piano for a few years, it was a shock when Alex Terrier, around age 12, heard Duke Ellington and the sound of saxophonist Johnny Hodges. That was the second step. From that day on, Alex Terrier has been dedicating his life to Jazz: "I used to get up in the morning and play the piano half asleep, really first thing in the morning before breakfast. I would listen to music all the time, read, study... that's all I did when I was a kid". His first influences were Duke Ellington, Memphis Slim, Fats Domino, and Sydney Bechet, as these were the few LPs he found in his father's home office. Alex Terrier received a Brevet de Technicien des Métiers de la Musique in Sèvres (it is hard to translate, but that could be Music Technological Diploma) in 1999. He received a Médaille d'Or at the Ecole Nationale de Musique d'Evry before going to Berklee College of Music in 2004. He graduated from Berklee in 2007 with a Dual Degree in Performance and Jazz Composition. He has been since then an active member of the New York scene and has become the first French musician to be part of the legendary Mingus Big Band. - This is an inspired work of art! The record is a tour-du-force of musical vision and mastery of improvisational inventiveness within a melodic and harmonic form that draws the listener in immediately.You need to hear this CD,buy it. It's SPEC-TA-CU-LAR. Nothing less. ~ Tim Price / Bloggin' For D'Addario Woodwinds January 2015.