Thursday, April 20, 2017

Tim Price Bloggin' For D'Addario Woodwinds- Is there a place for just plain beautiful instrumental jazz today? Just you...just me.

Is there a place for just plain beautiful instrumental jazz today?  I appreciate (post)modernists as much as the next guy. But I also think there's room for lovingly rendered standards. And that is the core of jazz- Swinging music, beautiful ballads and a saxophonist whom has their own sound.
Houston Person has been doing it quite successfully, as have Ron Carter and Charles McPhearson. Enter Charlie Mariano, erstwhile jazz pioneer, experimenter, and sojourner to such far off places as South East Asia and India. 
In a way, it's almost like coming home for Charlie on this CD of standards on Enja who has a long history--it almost seems like in a former life--of playing standards. Linked up with an exceptional rhythm section and some (generally) under-recorded standards, the results are entire enjoyable, if not revolutionary is you know what your listening to.
Mariano is walking a fine line between getting genuine sentiment out of these romantic ballads and keeping from slipping into sentimentality. His tone, bright, soulfully round. has a remarkable range of expression. His band mates, Bob Degen on piano, Isla Eckinger on bass, and Jarrod Cagwin on drums, a marvelously fluid unit, provide the exact right backing for Mariano. Cagwin--a name new to me--especially proves invaluable with perfect timing, coloration, and just a hint of the exotic.
All in all, a very creditable set, certainly worth checking out.This I suggest because last week over 6 people wrote and asked me to suggest a CD of Charlie playing standards- here you go!

I better mind set,in a way.This ain't easy out here. I've been REAL lucky to have the friends I do.BUT , our sanctuary. Our inner spot to focus and grow and Playing/loving music is a special thing.I do not watch a lot of TV. I kinda never did...lived 4 years in Boston and never had a TV.I think , to be positive is my sanity factor.But that IS just me. 
You know the tune Prez played.." Just you , Just Me". Ever think how boring life could be WITHOUT music.- How many people off the street can you talk to about jazz? a special thing.Hope those of you who know , got my points

You know the actor John Garfield? In one movie he walked up to this train station, the ticket booth, and the guy says, 'Yes, where are you going?' And he says, 'I want a ticket to nowhere.' I thought: that's it. The freedom to do that. I want a ticket to nowhere --- Wayne Shorter
....My Definition of Success is the Freedom to be Yourself. Remember- Knowledge is a weapon. But intend to be formidably armed. If you go back and listen to Coltrane Plays The Blues, then his work in the 50's you'll learn a lot about hard work, being prepared and knowledge too.

Sometimes you hear great players say “I just play what I feel.” My answer to young players is, “yeh, play what you feel, but not before you learn how to play.Other wise your wasting energy- ya know. Jazz is a language, just like any language. It’s just that we speak our language, called jazz, on our instruments. Imagine...How would you sound speaking German, if you never learned how to speak it? If you never learned the words, phrases, or sentences of German, not many people would understand much of what you were trying to say.I think of jazz improvisation in those terms and you can sort of see where I’m coming from. 

You hip to David S. Ware? THIS MAN....Was unified by spontaneous invention that are staggering in their complexity and intuitive concordance, skill, hard work,transcendental spirituality and conviction,he was an inspirational and improvisational tour de force of improvisation and mastery in the art form.One of the biggest tenor saxophone sounds in jazz- and a artist that also played stritch, saxello, flute and bass clarinet.David was a strong presence for jazz,humanity and enlightenment. They are assets to this music, life and the legacy of all things in saxophone and music.~ ~ TIM PRICE

OH YES- Check out the Coltrane picture above- with the 2 young guys- they are the Grubbs brothers I rave about so much. Carl is a long time Philly friend-

The picture right above this, was from a early morning radio show within the Cape May Jazz Festival 2008. One of the many aspects of those Cape May Jazz festival were the jam sessions ; the hangs & camaraderie. This picture is a result...of that era. The man I'm with is Philadelphia jazz icon saxophonist Carl Grubbs. Playing the jams with Carl & guys like that were just beautiful.Carl is not only a great friend, who inspires, and has a spirit that speaks to you. Some of you will recall alto saxophonist Carl Grubbs from early '70s ensemble he shared with his late tenor playing brother Earl: "The Visitors" out of Philly.We shared many a bandstand and he is someone I'm proud to call friend. Listen for him please!

Go within. Hear the story of sunrise from the Sun itself. if there were no sunrise within I would have set long ago. ~ Rumi

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