Monday, December 12, 2011

Tim Price Blogging For Rico- Expression not impression in jazz.

When I listen to great music, not just jazz but great music I hear expression. Take for example Johnny Hodges. ANYTHING... Hodges played by the way! Expression, deep internalized emotional depth that brought the listener in.Stravinsky, Bach, John Lennon and thousands of others.

No a bunch of flurries of fast notes.No matter what,technique must always serve an expressive idea. If you listen to Coltrane play " Russian Lullaby " there is a great example of what I just talked about. To use another example, Ernie Watts with Charlie Haden.( Charlie Haden Quartet West with string orchestra) as much horn as Ernie can play, you never hear how the chops are in the way of the artist.Great jazz players know that all they have is themselves. Doing what everyone else is doing is not an option.In the jazz community you don't get significant points for chest pounding every solo. Entry into the pantheon of great jazz is strictly reserved for those who play "who they are,".

Internalization through performance is also suggested to get expression together- everything can NOT be gained in the practice room.You need to play and play more than just the cream gigs. Play the small out of the way spots to get your ideas to relax and meet new players. I would workshop my bands at the now defunt " Puppets" a great jazz bar in Brooklyn NY on off peak hours. Mid-day to get players together and to get things going. Often, I'd find a lot out. It was a beautiful place to, Jamie who ran it was a great guy and beautiful drummer. On peak hours I'd bring in bands like my
" T.P.'s Kosmik Incubator" and we'd have a ball.Everything does not happen in the practice room!


That man is Jean-Baptiste Illinois Jacquet (October 31, 1922 – July 22, 2004)

Known as Illinois Jacquet, one of the greatest tenor saxophonists in jazz ever. Also one of THE greatest jazz bassoonists in jazz ever.You job is to search out everything you can find of his on you tube, and on Cd's and on older Count Basie you tube because he is essential to everything that ever happened to the music. Ever! And yes he played Rico reeds and oh yes he studied the music hard from every aspect. he even studied the bassoon in later years in life with a teacher from the NY Phil. Hear Illinois- you'll learn a lot.

Lastly,this is something I'm noticing a lot. Self-consciousness on the bandstand can be heard, and can easily be noticed when the player is looking around the room to see if anyone is watching them while they are playing.Lesson of lessons in the real world- ego nor machismo should override common musical sense.
As a player does this they are taking affirmation inventory as they play; checking out who looks impressed with them, or searching to see who or what other musician is in the room. Hiding vulnerability with this approach should be lost. Discipline, focus, sacrifice and heart are the tools used to respect your own life, focus on those and practice, and enjoy your playing on the set, eat right, and be glad your you. That's all you can hope for.

Till next week- make seasons bright !

~ Tim Price

No comments:

Post a Comment