Monday, October 28, 2013

Tim Price Bloggin' For Rico Reeds- Some, call it conception!

Some, call it conception! When we change ourselves, the world changes with us, both in the way that the world is affected by our changed actions and in the changed way that we experience the world. It’s a thought process. It’s past a mouthpiece change..it’s a MIND SET. Some, call it conception! Creative thinking is the process which we use when we come up with a new idea. It is the merging of ideas which have not been merged before. New ideas are formed by developing the current ones within our minds. This evolution HAS to be brought on by practice. ( smile) Ongoing creative thinking is the continuous investigation, questioning and analysis that develops through education, training and self-awareness. Ongoing creativity maximizes both accidental and deliberate creative thinking. It is a quest for improvement which never ends. It is an acceptance of and a looking for continuous change that differentiates between ongoing creativity and mental inflexibility. Ongoing creativity takes time and practice to become skillful. Ongoing creative thinking soon becomes an attitude not a technique. The first step to take is to learn the creative thinking techniques so that you can use them deliberately to come up with new ideas. You will then be at an immediate advantage to those who do not know how to use them. You should then practice them to increase your skill at ongoing creative thinking. With practice you may even find it unnecessary to use specific techniques because you may soon have too many ideas without using them at all. - At this point in my life...it's concept. What, where and why I am in pursuit of this creative forward motion. Stop by November 2ed in NYC to hear Bill Goodwin and myself play at Michiko Studios. This is one of the real great places to play in NYC because it's 100% listening. No distraction or jive. MUSIC. THAT...Is a beautiful thing. Till next week- keep on your path- TIM PRICE

Monday, October 21, 2013

Tim Price Bloggin' For Rico Reeds- Mario Maccaferri, The Bronx factory with Michael Brecker and reed making. History & learning.

Memory, reality....Mario Maccaferri, The Bronx factory with Michael Brecker and reed making. History and learning. - In 1939 Mario Maccaferri started to make reeds.French American Reeds Manufacturing Company it was called. Actually the machines were shipped to NY and he started at that point-in 1940 he invented a plastic reed- see picture. I am glad that I met him. In his last days he was making plastic violins that were almost as good as wood.When I went to his factory, on a weekly basis, as a reed-product tester consultant for Dave Guardala with Dave and crew and Michael Brecker, Mario in his 90s, came to work everyday in a shirt and tie. He sold 9 million plastic ukalalees in the 50s when Arthur Godfrey endorsed them on the air. The ukes came equipped with strings made by a then very small company, D'Addario! In the 30s he was director general of Selmer. Mario Maccaferri was in guitar manufacture in partnership with Selmer. They ran a workshop where the "Selmer - Maccaferri, " guitars were made that were immortalized by Django Reinhardt. During his time at Selmer, he had discovered and learned the technique of making reeds for saxophones and clarinets. Maccaferri oriented himself from then on with the making of reeds, creating his "French-American Reed Manufacturing Company." During WWII, Maccaferri developed a viable plastic reed, the Maccaferri Futurity reed. Endorsed by Benny Goodman and others, his reed making enterprise survived the hazards of wartime shortages and propelled him into a thriving business in plastics.With his plastics business on firm ground, offering clothespins, bathroom tile and a host of other injection-molded products. The guitar he made which I mentioned was also called a SELMER GUITAR.When he left the project ended. Very sad to say, the machines that the reeds are made on, some as massive as a locomotive, which were unreal and amazing,still from the 30's required his maintenance. When he passed, and left the planet- so did the reeds-and the amazing machines. To me- STEREO REED was something as close to a hand select reed as ever. It is HARD...but a unfilled reed. A pre- Rico jazz select if you will. - But think about it...this guy didn't just jump a bandwagon business wise. He paid some " life dues". Born in Cento, Italy, Maccaferri was trained as a classical guitarist and in 1926 became a professor at the Conservatory of Music in Sienna. His concert career continued until he sustained a hand injury in 1932. Within that tragic accident, he had developed a second career designing and manufacturing musical instruments. He was very generous to Michael Brecker and myself...Giving us all kinds of great reeds from decades before both of us were born...I was very lucky. Why? I'll tell you, you know how good Michael sounds on the stage. Well up close right aside of you it is mind blowing. I knew this from 1972 when I first met him. But in the"reed days" with Mario it became even greater. He'd play my SBA Selmer alto I had then...and blow our minds. Between Brecker and Mario, I truly learned a lot. Mario used to make these lunches for us, with homemade soup...and cheese. Mike and I would be trying reeds and getting silly. Artie Shaw and Goodman " in the day" used Mario's reeds. Shaw told me before he used the plastic Brillhardt reed-he used Mario's. I tried to center in on what Shaw used strength wise and he sais- ANYTHING HARD. Typical Artie Shaw. - One day Michael Brecker & I were getting silly, and soaking reeds in water and I spilled the glass of water on Mario. He said- " It looks like I pissed myself ( he was laughing too- having a good time)... THEN...His lawyer called....and Mario told the lawyer.."I'll kill you"....and the horse carrying you to your gave will smile. HA!!!!! Brecker & I went hysterical...to funny!!! That was the subject of many, many laughs between us. The same day- we couldn't stop laughing...Mike backed his Honda into a parking meter, as he was giving me a ride into the bus station in midtown from the Bronx. I picked up the tail light that broke and said to him..." I'LL KILL YOU"...totally lost in hysteria. Mike was real- loved to hang. HERE IS A FACT...Michael played a RUBBER OTTO LINK MOUTHPIECE... on Mockingbird- The Carley Simon hit. I thought it was the metal 4 star he had that Dave Liebman used with Elvin. When he told me that I was more than surprised. Sounds like metal to me. But . . . There is a lesson. CHOPS...101.PAGE 1- he will sound vibrant on anything. Same piece as on the "DREAMS" records. No baffle, no funny stuff- boom. LaVoz reed. - Mario laid all kinds of bassoon cane and oboe cane on me..as gifts which was stellar vintage cane.A warm hearted man. Plus, those crazy nylon clarinet mouthpieces he made. I miss guys like Mario & Michael- that_REAL_ in the business of music. Know how backed up by decades of trial and error. - Like I told one of my Skype students David Luscher when he asked me about Sonny Stitt and so on, I'm glad these things I learned came from the SOURCE, not a book. Mario passed in April 16, 1993- and yes I did attend his services. It shows things can be done and made in the USA too...it takes work and skill. Check it- Carly Simon - Mockingbird (Remastered)( RUBBER OTTO LINK MOUTHPIECE/LaVoz reeds ) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zAtWJ8J1DeA - I’m grateful I’ve had the opportunity to know these great people, in the grand scheme of life they all have helped me become a better musician and a better person. - TIM PRICE

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Tim Price Bloggin For Rico Reeds- The path of a true "artist" is a rocky road. Plus- Bonus> COLTRANE SUBS!!

The path of a true "artist" is a rocky road. We have all remarked when an innocent child speaks their mind and reveals something candid, with no worries about consequences, failure, or judgment that makes us think. We also know there is something envious about that special quality; raw freedom to express with no fears or hang-ups. When a young student drums on a desk, draws on a paper, or sings, sincerity is at its best. And it’s all valid because it’s sincere. Our attraction to music is a personal one. Sure, there are peer pressures, and multi musical purposes, but somewhere in our hearts we have our own musical tastes. To step forward and play what you feel might be your best move.I feel it’s tragic to not explore music and life through creativity and self development. I respect the ideal of traditional development of needed musical skills but not at the cost of creativity. No one should have to wait some undetermined amount of time to compose something or even think about composing something.Ditto with improvisation. Same with any writing or art. It’s sincere. It’s in the moment. The path of a true "artist" is a rocky road. It's like walking up wet glass at times but after a while it's fun.It is your business to keep the channel open.You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you.You'll note a slow emergence almost imperceptible. it will be something you never forget. Now's the time tell a genuine story, speak the truth, and someone will appreciate it.It is part and parcel of being an artist. Keep the channel open, and try your best.You'll learn something special. Been talking to my students about the many aspects of the creative mind set. Trying to just expand more ideas and thoughts. Here's some things that I'm coming up with ; Creativity is the bringing into being something which did not exist before, either as a product, a process or a thought. Right? So let’s apply this to ALL levels of saxophone playing, thought and improvisation. You would be demonstrating creativity if you: · Played something which has never existed before. · Reapply an existing lick or concept into a new area musically. · Develop a new way of looking at something (bringing a new idea into existence). · Change the way someone else looks at something. We are all creative every day because we are constantly changing the ideas which we hold about the world about us and our relationship with it. Creativity does not have to be about developing something new to the world, it is more to do with developing something new to ourselves !! When we change ourselves, the world changes with us, both in the way that the world is affected by our changed actions and in the changed way that we experience the world. It’s a thought process. It’s past a mouthpiece change..it’s a MIND SET !! Creative thinking is the process which we use when we come up with a new idea. It is the merging of ideas which have not been merged before. New ideas are formed by developing the current ones within our minds. This evolution HAS to be brought on by practice. Ongoing creative thinking is the continuous investigation, questioning and analysis that develops through education, training and self-awareness. Ongoing creativity maximizes both accidental and deliberate creative thinking. It is a quest for improvement which never ends. It is an acceptance of and a looking for continuous change that differentiates between ongoing creativity and mental inflexibility. Ongoing creativity takes time and practice to become skillful. Ongoing creative thinking soon becomes an attitude not a technique. The first step to take is to learn the creative thinking techniques so that you can use them deliberately to come up with new ideas. You will then be at an immediate advantage to those who do not know how to use them. You should then practice them to increase your skill at ongoing creative thinking. With practice you may even find it unnecessary to use specific techniques because you may soon have too many ideas without using them at all. By the way...The friend. COLTRANE.....Velocity and hard work. < Coltrane Substitutions > My Coltrane inspiration is HOW he did what he did, the pursuit of being inspired from the WHAT AND HOW of the knowledge, as well as the velocity of his genius. The man was one of the hardest workers.Check his six-box Prestige collection, in only a year and a half--the first session being in May 1957, the last in December 1958, he recorded ALL those recordings while touring and playing gigs. Coltrane chord substitutions of a basic ii-V-I with movement in major thirds creating an augmented triad. This is also know as "Coltrane Changes," etc. I'll post one of my favorites at the end here as well. Coltrane first introduced this on Blue Train on tunes such as Moment's Notice and Lazy Bird, and later on took things further on Giant Steps.The B section from _Have You Met Miss Jones_ served as inspiration for Coltrane because of the major 3rd modulation from D to Gb to Bb. Coltrane Substitution: 1) Here is a normal ii-V-I in C major: | ii | V | I || | dmin7 | G7 | Cmaj7 || 2) Now with the Major 3rds Cycle: | ii V** | I* V** | I* V** | I* | | dmin7 Eb7 | Abmaj7 B7 | Emaj7 G7 | Cmaj7 | This cycle has been used in many re-harmonization, far to many to even list! Here are some of the most accessible- and also the sky is the limit. With some creative ears and imagination they work in rock and pop too. Standard ; Dmin7- G7- CMaj7 Trane sub ; Dmin Eb7 Ab B7 E G7 C Standard ;Fmin7- Bb7- EbMaj7 Trane Sub ;Fmin F#7 B D7 G Bb7 Eb Simile rest of page. Abmin7- Db7- GbMaj7 Abmin A7 D F7 Bb Db7 Gb Bmin7- E7- AMaj7 Bmin C7 F Ab7 Db E7 A Gmin7- C7- FMaj7 Gmin Ab7 Db E7 A C7 F Bbmin7- Eb7- AbMaj7 Bbmin B7 E G7 C Eb7 Ab C#min7- F#7- BMaj7 C#min D7 G Bb7 Eb F# B Emin7- A7- DMaj7 Emin F7 Bb Db7 Gb A7 D Cmin7- F7- BbMaj7 Cmin Db7 Gb A7 D F7 Bb Emin7- Ab7- DbMaj7 Ebmin E7 A C7 F Ab7 Db F#min7- B7- EMaj7 F#min G7 C Eb7 Ab B7 E Amin7- D7- GMaj7 Amin Bb7 Eb F#7 B D7 G Thanks, and keep on your path. ~ Tim Price

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Tim Price Bloggin' For Rico Reeds- Happy Birthday Yusef Lateef

92 years young, born the same year as Bird. Happy Birthday Yusef Lateef. Birth name William Emanuel Huddleston Born October 9, 1920 Chattanooga, Tennessee United States Genres New Age music, jazz, Post-bop, jazz fusion, swing, Third Stream, autophysiopsychic music Occupations Musician, author Instruments Tenor saxophone, flute, oboe, bassoon, bamboo flute, shehnai, shofar, arghul, koto Years active 1957–present Labels Savoy, Prestige, Verve, Riverside, Impulse, Atlantic, CTI, YAL Records Associated acts Cannonball Adderley, Elvin Jones, Adam Rudolph, Dizzy Gillespie Website Yusef Lateef.com Yusef Lateef (born William Emanuel Huddleston; October 9, 1920) is an American Grammy Award-winning jazz multi-instrumentalist, composer, educator and a spokesman for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community after his conversion to the Ahmadiyya sect of Islam in 1950. Although Lateef's main instruments are the tenor saxophone and flute, he also plays oboe and bassoon, both rare in jazz, and also uses a number of world music instruments, notably the bamboo flute, shanai, shofar, Xun, arghul, sarewa, and koto. He is known for his innovative blending of jazz with "Eastern" music. Biography Early life and career Lateef was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee; his family moved to Detroit, Michigan, in 1925. Throughout his early life Lateef came into contact with many Detroit-based jazz musicians who went on to gain prominence, including vibraphonist Milt Jackson, bassist Paul Chambers, drummer Elvin Jones, and guitarist Kenny Burrell. Lateef was a proficient saxophonist by the time of his graduation from high school at the age of 18, when he launched his professional career and began touring with a number of swing bands. In 1949, he was invited by Dizzy Gillespie to tour with his orchestra. In 1950, Lateef returned to Detroit and began his studies in composition and flute at Wayne State University. It was during this period that he converted to Islam as a member of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. Prominence Lateef began recording as a leader in 1957 for Savoy Records, a non-exclusive association which continued until 1959; the earliest of Lateef's album's for the Prestige subsidiary New Jazz overlap with them. Musicians such as Wilbur Harden and Hugh Lawson were among his collaborators during this period. By 1961, with the recording of Into Something and Eastern Sounds, Lateef's dominant presence within a group context had emerged. His 'Eastern' influences are clearly audible in all of these recordings, with spots for instruments like the rahab, shanai, arghul, koto and a collection of Chinese wooden flutes and bells along with his tenor and flute. Even his use of the western oboe sounds exotic in this context; it is not a standard jazz instrument. Indeed the tunes themselves are a mixture of jazz standards, blues and film music usually performed with a piano/bass/drums rhythm section in support. Along with trumpeter Don Cherry, Lateef can lay claim to being among the first exponents of the world music as subgenres of jazz. Lateef also made numerous contributions to other people's albums including his time as a member of saxophonist Cannonball Adderley's Quintet during 1962-64. Lateef's sound has been claimed to have been a major influence on the saxophonist John Coltrane, whose later period free jazz recordings contain similarly 'Eastern' traits. For a time (1963–66) Lateef was signed to Coltrane's label, Impulse. He had a regular working group during this period, with trumpeter Richard Williams and Mike Nock on piano. They enjoyed a residency at Pep's Lounge during June 1964; an evening of which was issued across several albums. In the late 1960s he began to incorporate contemporary soul and gospel phrasing into his music, still with a strong blues underlay, on albums such as Detroit and Hush'n'Thunder. Lateef has expressed a dislike of the terms "jazz" and "jazz musician" as musical generalizations. As is so often the case with such generalizations, the use of these terms do understate the breadth of his sound. For example, in the 1980s, Lateef experimented with new age and spiritual elements. His 1987 album Yusef Lateef's Little Symphony won the Grammy Award for Best New Age Album. His core influences, however, are clearly rooted in jazz, and in his own words: "My music is jazz." In 1992, Lateef founded YAL Records, his own label for which he records today. In 1993, Lateef was commissioned by the WDR Radio Orchestra Cologne to compose The African American Epic Suite, a four part work for orchestra and quartet based on themes of slavery and disfranchisement in the United States. The piece has since been performed by the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Education and teaching In 1960, Lateef again returned to school, studying flute at the Manhattan School of Music in New York. He received a Bachelor's Degree in Music in 1969 and a Master's Degree in Music Education in 1970. Starting in 1971, he taught courses in autophysiopsychic music at the Manhattan School of Music, and he became an associate professor at the Borough of Manhattan Community College in 1972. In 1975, Lateef completed his dissertation on Western and Islamic education and earned a Ed.D. in Education from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. In the early 1980s Lateef was a Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Nigerian Cultural Studies at Ahmadu Bello University in the city of Zaria, Nigeria. Returning to the US in 1986 he took teaching positions at the University of Massachusetts and Amherst College. Presently, he continues to teach at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and Hampshire College in western Massachusetts. Lateef has written and published a number of books including two novellas entitled A Night in the Garden of Love and Another Avenue, the short story collections Spheres and Rain Shapes, also his autobiography, The Gentle Giant, written in collaboration with Herb Boyd. Along with his record label YAL Records, Lateef owns Fana Music, a music publishing company. Lateef publishes his own work through Fana, which includes Yusef Lateef's Flute Book of the Blues and many of his own orchestral compositions. Autophysiopsychic Music, Lateef's term, refers to music which comes from one's physical, mental, and spiritual self. Lateef has written extensively on the topic and includes it in his book Method To Perform Autophysiopsychic Music. In this view, it should be the goal of every musician to combine their theoretical knowledge with their life experience, and to offer to and accept knowledge from their personal source of strength, inspiration and knowledge. Awards and honors In 2010 he received lifetime the Jazz Master Fellowship Award from NEA, National Endowment for the Arts which is an independent federal agency. National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Masters is the highest honor given in Jazz established in 1982. WGBH Jazz, a popular public radio from Boston, Massachusetts, aired a special-documentary program for Lateef, titled A portrait of saxophonist Yusef Lateef in his own words and music. Discography As leader Jazz for the Thinker (Savoy, 1957) Jazz Mood (Savoy, 1957) Before Dawn: The Music of Yusef Lateef (Verve, 1957) Jazz and the Sounds of Nature (Savoy, 1957) Prayer to the East (Savoy, 1957) The Sounds of Yusef (Prestige, 1957) Other Sounds (New Jazz, 1957) Lateef at Cranbrook (Argo, 1958) The Dreamer (Savoy, 1959) The Fabric of Jazz (Savoy, 1959) Cry! - Tender (New Jazz, 1959) The Three Faces of Yusef Lateef (Riverside, 1960) The Centaur and the Phoenix (Riverside, 1960) Lost in Sound (Charlie Parker, 1961) Eastern Sounds (Moodsville, 1961) Into Something (New Jazz, 1961) Jazz 'Round the World (Impulse!, 1963) Live at Pep's (Impulse!, 1964) 1984 (Impulse!, 1965) Psychicemotus (Impulse!, 1965) A Flat, G Flat and C (Impulse!, 1966) The Golden Flute (Impulse!, 1966) The Complete Yusef Lateef (Atlantic, 1967) The Blue Yusef Lateef (Atlantic, 1968) Yusef Lateef's Detroit (Atlantic, 1969) The Diverse Yusef Lateef (Atlantic, 1969) Suite 16 (Atlantic, 1970) The Gentle Giant (Atlantic, 1971) Hush 'N' Thunder (Atlantic, 1972) Part of the Search (Atlantic, 1973) 10 Years Hence (Atlantic, 1974) The Doctor is In... and Out (Atlantic, 1976) Autophysiopsychic (1977, CTI Records) In a Temple Garden (1979, CTI Records) Yusef Lateef in Nigeria (Landmark, 1983) Yusef Lateef's Little Symphony (Atlantic, 1987) Concerto for Yusef Lateef (Atlantic, 1988) Nocturnes (Atlantic, 1989) Meditations (Atlantic, 1990) Yusef Lateef's Encounters (Atlantic, 1991) Tenors of Yusef Lateef and Von Freeman (Yal, 1992) Heart Vision (Yal, 1992) Yusef Lateef Plays Ballads (Yal, 1993) Tenors of Yusef Lateef and Archie Shepp (Yal, 1993) Woodwinds (Yal, 1993) The World at Peace (1997) Beyond the Sky (2000) Go: Organic Orchestra: In the Garden (2003) The Doctor is In and Out (2005) Nocturnes (2005) The Complete Yusef Lateef (2005) The Blue Yusef Lateef (2005) Influence with Lionel and St├ęphane Belmondo (2005) 10 Years Hence (2008) Roots Run Deep (2012, Rogue Art) As sideman With Donald Byrd Byrd Jazz (Transition, 1955) - also released as First Flight (Delmark) With Art Farmer Something You Got (CTI, 1977) With Curtis Fuller Images of Curtis Fuller (Savoy, 1960) Boss of the Soul-Stream Trombone (Warwick, 1960) With Grant Green Grantstand (1961; Blue Note) With Cannonball Adderley The Cannonball Adderley Sextet in New York (1962; Riverside) Cannonball in Europe! (1962; Riverside) Jazz Workshop Revisited (1962; Riverside) Autumn Leaves (1963; Riverside) Nippon Soul (1963; Riverside) With Leon Redbone Double Time on the track "Mississippi Delta Blues" (1976; Warner Bros. Records) With Randy Weston Uhuru Afrika (Roulette, 1960) a great interview here; http://oldnews.aadl.org/node/201858 Anyhow as Yusef Lateef told me."Serious practice is the only way to induce advancement ".Work hard ,few things in life have the spiritual rewards that music does. Happy birthday my friend....With great respect- Tim Price

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Tim Price Bloggin' For Rico Reeds- Conference Of The Birds ; No jazz collection is complete without this.

...... - I got this LP early 1974, having heard Holland, Altschul, and Braxton in Chick Corea's band Circle, and of course knowing Holland's work on some highly conspicuous Miles Davis recordings (In a Silent Way, Bitches Brew...). I bought CotB under the impression that I knew what I was getting myself into. I'd been wrestling with atonality for awhile -- late Coltrane, Schoenberg, whatever I could find that seemed reasonably "important." I was not getting it. I had the youthful faith that there was something worthwhile happening inside all that cacophony, but I needed a Rosetta Stone to make sense of it. "Conference of the Birds" was my Rosetta Stone. From the opening bars of "Four Winds" I was completely captivated. It swings hard, the improvisations are always coherent -- no matter how frenzied and dissonant they sound, and Holland's compositions are outstanding. The title song is a beautiful folk ballad that makes a perfect breather amid the fiery uptempo rants and cryptic, avant garde soundscapes. This record was the best education my ears ever had. Even though I now have it on CD, I still have my battered vinyl copy of CotB, and hold onto it for purely sentimental reasons.In the early '70s, bassist Dave Holland and drummer Barry Altschul had a well-deserved reputation as the most fluently creative rhythm section in free jazz. Two of the groups they worked with regularly were those of Sam Rivers and Anthony Braxton. It was Holland's inspiration to pair the two in this 1972 quartet, when Rivers and Braxton represented two distinct generations of the avant-garde, the former generating explosive, driven tenor lines filled with honks and cries and the latter creating oblique postmodern solos on a variety of reeds. It was a brilliant idea, and the results are one of the essential jazz recordings of the'70s. Holland's compositions include boppish, Ornette-inspired lines and strong melodies that provide cool and varied frames for improvisation. That Rivers and Braxton are among the finest flutists in jazz is just one of the treats, while Holland is one of the great bassists. Altschul's scintillating drumming completes a quartet with some of the quickest reflexes in improvised music. Holland is without question one of the greatest living jazz artists, and no bassist except Charles Mingus has ever matched his all-around musicianship. I think Holland's output on ECM has been very consistent over the quarter-century he's been recording for them, so it might seem unfair to call this the best recording to ever come out under his name, but he's never really topped this. To me, this disc is the jazz equivalent of a Bartok string quartet, and in my book, it doesn't get any better than that Conference of the Birds" is the most influential jazz album ever, for me personally. Rivers' contribution is inspired to say the least. The organization of songs around melodic clips and collective improvisation with the guys listening to and supporting each other was a true revelation. The ability of everyone to comp behind the soloist and add what is necessary with sensitivity is just amazing. There must have been a lot of visual communication going on at a really high level. This is where I learned that "free jazz" is not chaotic jazz. inally bought the LP of this in early 1974, having heard Holland, Altschul, and Braxton in Chick Corea's band Circle, and of course knowing Holland's work on some highly conspicuous Miles Davis recordings (In a Silent Way, Bitches Brew...). I bought CotB under the impression that I knew what I was getting myself into. I'd been wrestling with atonality for awhile -- late Coltrane, Schoenberg, whatever I could find that seemed reasonably "important." I was not getting it. I had the youthful faith that there was something worthwhile happening inside all that cacophony, but I needed a Rosetta Stone to make sense of it. "Conference of the Birds" was my Rosetta Stone. From the opening bars of "Four Winds" I was completely captivated. It swings hard, the improvisations are always coherent -- no matter how frenzied and dissonant they sound, and Holland's compositions are outstanding. The title song is a beautiful folk ballad that makes a perfect breather amid the fiery uptempo rants and cryptic, avant garde soundscapes. Holland is without question one of the greatest living jazz artists, and no bassist except Charles Mingus has ever matched his all-around musicianship. I think Holland's output on ECM has been very consistent over the quarter-century he's been recording for them, so it might seem unfair to call this the best recording to ever come out under his name, but he's never really topped this. Check out all of them, but if you like CotB in particular you should also listen to the Dave Holland/Sam Rivers duet records, particularly Volume One. To me, this disc is the jazz equivalent of a Bartok string quartet, and in my book, it doesn't get any better than that.THIS...is something special and should be heard by everyone. Listen. - TIM PRICE

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Tim Price Bloggin' For Rico Reeds- Feelings,emotions and artistic frame of mind.

Many are entranced by harmony, the in & out of the music. So to speak.But there's more to it than a techinique- it's THE MELODY. How you phrase it and the message. I note with extreme interest, that to get to a level of a Coltrane, Miles Davis or Michael Brecker, one needs to have their melody playing as tight as possible. To many rely on what might be " required" or the peer group their in. But realistically speaking, you need MELODY to make the advanced techniques work.You need to enhance your playing with the richness of color and its subsequent emotional power to bring the listener into your story. After all, you won't be playing for your peers all your life. Right? Learning standards, such as " Body & Soul", " Stardust", " I Can't Get Started" and so many others.In this sense I mean knowing the song without a fake book. Playing from that agenda. Of course tunes like " Soul Eyes", " Lush Life" and Strayhorn gems need chord lead sheet road maps.But the agenda of knowing standards is essential.Improvising is a bottomless pit of discovery with unending combinations,but it's useless unless you study the roots of the music. If you do not know the melody, and chords to ballads like I mentioned or worse yet songs like " All Blues" and " Tune Up" there are huge missing links within. Without the aspect of swing, and melody the core of the tradition is not present.With out question the supremacy of melody has to be acknowledged.We all know that harmony shades and supports melody,enhancing its beauty and depth. In jazz creating a strong melody stands as a crowning achievement. We have all remarked when an innocent child speaks their mind and reveals something candid, with no worries about consequences, failure, or judgment that makes us think. We also know there is something envious about that special quality; raw freedom to express with no fears or hang-ups. When a young student drums on a desk, draws on a paper, or sings, sincerity is at its best. And it’s all valid because it’s sincere. Our attraction to music is a personal one. Sure, there are peer pressures, and multi musical purposes, but somewhere in our hearts we have our own musical tastes. To step forward and play what you feel might be your best move.I feel it’s tragic to not explore music and life through creativity and self development. I respect the ideal of traditional development of needed musical skills but not at the cost of creativity. No one should have to wait some undetermined amount of time to compose something or even think about composing something.Ditto with improvisation. Same with any writing or art. It’s sincere. It’s in the moment. The path of a true "artist" is a rocky road. It's like walking up wet glass at times but after a while it's fun.It is your business to keep the channel open.You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you.You'll note a slow emergence almost imperceptible. it will be something you never forget. Now's the time tell a genuine story, speak the truth, and someone will appreciate it.It is part and parcel of being an artist. Keep the channel open, and try your best.You'll learn something special.The saxophone has long been considered to be the most versatile musical instrument.The spontaneity of an artist doesn't flow from an unrehearsed consciousness. It flows because they thought about things hard and honestly, as to obtain a level of direction within their performance. To obtain total creative control, it must be thought about, studied, listened to and internalized even more. When I heard Michael Brecker play in concert the thing that struck me was how he used changes in volume (dynamics) to great effect. Sure, he played fast, high and split notes etc BUT it was his use of dynamics that floored me. Listen to the 30 second long, almost inaudible Low B at the end of Delta City Blues. Get my drift?!? Another great example is Stan Getz, on the CD " Sweet Rain", listen to the dynamics of the entire recording. Especially " Litha". How about Coltrane on " Stardust", or Coltrane on " Lush Life" ? The majority of Trane guys never approach the Prestige / Blue Note Coltrane conceptions, just the later/modal stuff. ~ Just a quick commercial saxually speaking..about clinics-workshops and concerts. I'm expanding my base of operations more and more. Week to week- I'm finding out that I need to get to YOUR city for performances, school concerts-clinics and so on. As I book myself, I am just letting those interested know. Check out Jeff Coffins words about what I do ; "Tim Price has captured my imagination on many occasions with his forward thinking arrangements and wonderfully captivating playing. He is a unique musician made more unique because he has searched and found his own voice. Truly a rare find in music." ~ Jeff Coffin Tim Price- On the Road (Promo) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YGaAWGW5gWo EUROPE ESPECIALLY! Let me know how I can be of service? JUST ASK!! http://www.timpricejazz.com/booking.html I'll be talking more about ~stepping forward~ and taking your chances. Now's the time. Thanks, and keep on your path......Tim Price