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#1506770 - 08/31/10 06:56 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: beeboss]
jazzwee Offline
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Originally Posted By: beeboss
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
It's not such an easy logic. In fact I just tried it and there's huge problems.

Let's just start with one of the early chords. Fm7. How you call this Bb Major? Your LH is comping the Ab. If you play A you have a wrong note. A7 on LH, what about the Db?


I think the only problem is that it an unfamiliar restriction on notes to chose from. We are more used to selecting our notes from scales or from chord tones maybe. Say you are playing on the Fm7, you can use Bb C D Eb F G - that is 6 notes to choose from, including the Root, 9th, 11th, 5th, 6th, b7. Not exactly difficult. Just need to get used to not playing A or Ab. And obviously many of our established licks and tricks aren't going to work because almost all of them will use the Ab, so we are forced into a new area.
The fewer new tones we use the simpler the improvisation will appear to a listener, maybe because it is simpler it may also be more obviously melodic.


My point though, Beeboss, is you're already playing the Ab on the LH so avoiding it is a moot point. Your LH played it so why distinguish between LH and RH?

If you're going to avoid it, you'd better think of avoiding it in the voicing too. Thus a reharm would be called for. A rather complicated process just because one doesn't want to follow the changes...
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#1506786 - 08/31/10 07:15 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Offline
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Back to Blues a second, check out this video of a famous solo by Paul Gonsalves (with Duke Ellington). It's a very long solo. You can start at 2+ minutes. Check out his note choices. This is pre-Coltrane. I don't know when this was recorded but '50's I guess.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GkElnIiE4U4
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#1506795 - 08/31/10 07:21 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
knotty Offline
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Well, a few choruses. I was gonna post in the beginner's thread, but wasn't too excited by the suggested exercise smile . So I'll just squeeze in here.

http://www.box.net/shared/f5mm65n6sp

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#1506811 - 08/31/10 07:41 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: knotty]
jazzwee Offline
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Well Knotty there are two separate ideas here. In the beginner's section, I have to teach them how to do it. I can't just post a blues without some lesson. You obviously don't have to do the exercise there since that's for the true beginner.

Here however, there's no rule. So what I was intending to do was post really simplistic blues on the other thread, just so people have examples of how to phrase a blues line.

I had actually intended to post two completely different styles anyway for each thread.

You did a very credible blues job here Knotty. Nice playing. Swing and time was perfect. And authentic blues phrasing. It needs more space though on some of those ultra long lines...And I'd experiment with going less diatonic.
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#1506826 - 08/31/10 08:18 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
beeboss Online   content
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Originally Posted By: jazzwee


My point though, Beeboss, is you're already playing the Ab on the LH so avoiding it is a moot point. Your LH played it so why distinguish between LH and RH?

If you're going to avoid it, you'd better think of avoiding it in the voicing too. Thus a reharm would be called for. A rather complicated process just because one doesn't want to follow the changes...


Well I think that, although when we are playing it feels like the hands are closely linked, to the listener it can be as thought almost the hands are separate instruments. Especially if the LH is quiet and plays little. jarrett frequently just stops his LH for choruses at a time. The melody can be so strong that it dominates totally the accompaniment. By limiting the number of notes and range in the melody line it gives some possibility to gradually increase the range and tones played and so give more potential for development. Maybe...


Knotty, good job on the blues. The balance between the hands is really good, the melody line always comes through clearly. LH nice and crisp in the right places. That is a hard tempo I think.
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#1506962 - 09/01/10 12:15 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: beeboss]
jazzwee Offline
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Knotty is an expert at these slow tempos. I can't do it that slow. It is harder, at least to me.

Beeboss, aren't you planning on dazzling with some blues at 250bpm? You've been quiet about this topic smile
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#1506999 - 09/01/10 01:30 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
scepticalforumguy Offline
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...and this just in...

I was playing with Stella tonight and thinking about what Wiz was wanting to do with the Bb scale. You know, I think the idea of sticking to the scale is sound. In fact it really made me think about note choices much more closely when I knew I was limited to that scale.

So, Wiz, I would also like to encourage you to continue how you're approaching the tune, at least for now. I may even post a version of it with just the Bb scale notes.
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#1507064 - 09/01/10 05:39 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: scepticalforumguy]
beeboss Online   content
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Originally Posted By: scepticalforumguy
...and this just in...

I was playing with Stella tonight and thinking about what Wiz was wanting to do with the Bb scale. You know, I think the idea of sticking to the scale is sound. In fact it really made me think about note choices much more closely when I knew I was limited to that scale.

So, Wiz, I would also like to encourage you to continue how you're approaching the tune, at least for now. I may even post a version of it with just the Bb scale notes.


I agree. I tried it and it was working for me.
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#1507065 - 09/01/10 05:41 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
beeboss Online   content
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Originally Posted By: jazzwee


Beeboss, aren't you planning on dazzling with some blues at 250bpm? You've been quiet about this topic smile


I already posted a fast blues some time ago so I don't see the point of doing another. I may have a go at stella. I remember I used to practice stella in 5 at one time.
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#1507180 - 09/01/10 12:14 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Offline
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I had a fun lesson yesterday. I played Giant Steps with my teacher and he played drums and we worked on my LH comping. He told me not to worry about playing stacatto or half notes or on the downbeat/upbeat but just focus on a conversation between the LH and RH.

Then we focused on just syncopation on the RH and just variations between long and short lines. All seeming like basic stuff but typically forgotten in the heat of the moment.

But the fun part was after a summer focused on GS, I was just relaxed and focused and he was complimenting me on the result including specific lines I did. My time was also pretty solid when a drummer is setting the beat. That really felt good and was good payback for a summer of seeming frustration and limited improvement.

It was definitely a major improvement from even when I last posted GS. He was telling me how it helped that I just stuck with this instead of changing tunes every lesson.

It just goes to show how improvement comes in spurts.
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#1507182 - 09/01/10 12:17 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: beeboss]
beeboss Online   content
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Ok I had a go at Stella


http://www.divshare.com/download/12433650-f76

I think I managed a couple of choruses before I added any notes that aren't from the Bb major scale. I found it pretty hard to limit myself to those notes.
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#1507184 - 09/01/10 12:21 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
beeboss Online   content
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Originally Posted By: jazzwee


It just goes to show how improvement comes in spurts.



How true is that.
Although sometimes the improvement is so gradual one can only notice it from a viewpoint of weeks or months (even years).
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#1507195 - 09/01/10 12:43 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: beeboss]
jazzwee Offline
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Originally Posted By: beeboss
Ok I had a go at Stella

http://www.divshare.com/download/12433650-f76

I think I managed a couple of choruses before I added any notes that aren't from the Bb major scale. I found it pretty hard to limit myself to those notes.


Interesting what it did Beeboss. It kept you close to the melody. But I could still hear those "missing" notes because it was so clearly stated in the LH that it seemed it was still part of it. I wonder what it would sound like if the LH was just doing a shell voicing?

I have to relisten to this many more times as it was hard to rewind with Divshare. This is really gives some food for thought.

Very nice playing as always.

In my mind, I was thinking though that knowing the harmony and deliberately changing your approach against that background knowledge will likely yield different results when compared to someone doing this as a shortcut.

As they say, "you have to know the rules to break the rules"?
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#1507218 - 09/01/10 01:27 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
beeboss Online   content
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Originally Posted By: jazzwee

In my mind, I was thinking though that knowing the harmony and deliberately changing your approach against that background knowledge will likely yield different results when compared to someone doing this as a shortcut.

As they say, "you have to know the rules to break the rules"?



Yes that is very true. But there are no rules being broken, just a restriction of notes choice.
What happens when we just play what we feel is that we almost always stay very close to the ideas that we have already worked on and assimilated thoroughly. It takes a bit more effort to force ourselves to try an approach that we not so familiar with.
You would have thought that this would be quite easy to do, with less notes to think about, but it isn't easier.
I suppose this is just another way of flattening out the changes but I am sure it can yield some good melodic results.
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#1507221 - 09/01/10 01:41 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
scepticalforumguy Offline
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I would even add that it may not even be a restriction necessarily, but rather a starting point. This is looking at the melodic note choices (those outlined and contained in the melody) and primarily using those to join the chords together. This is what linear playing is, isn't it? So, although it may seem limiting to some, I've found it to be helpful in reviewing the tune. And like beeboss (great playing btw), I've also found that I couldn't generate enough different and increasingly complex ideas just on the Bb scale. Although I was able to, as Wiz suggested, alter the scale, ie put an 'e' or 'c#' in the Bb scale when I wanted a particular line.
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#1507258 - 09/01/10 03:10 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Offline
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Loc: So. California
Approaching a tune via melody is of course a valid approach since the melody is often a common-tone connection among the many chord changes. I liked Beeboss' term flattening the changes. I never heard that before.

I would probably call this "horizontal playing" vs. the vertical (think of individual chord/scale) approaches.

My only concern is that Wiz is using this as a primary approach to learning the tune and the harmony. If you already know the changes, it's one thing. As Beeboss confirms and as I would expect, this is more difficult to do. And it is a good approach for shattering pre-determined concepts of approaching a tune.

However, I still have concerns about the artificiality of the exercise when you didn't really limit the notes as it is still stated in the LH. In that sense, it didn't sound all that different. In fact, it requires me to listen more closely because it's hard to detect a difference.

If you played a shell voicing on the LH, and actually skipped those important notes like 3rds as would be implied by using a Bb scale, I'd really be able to hear better what the effect is. Or better yet, skip the LH completely and see if the solo stands by itself.

I presume the end result desired is to see if limiting the notes changed the way the tune was played (freshened it) or made it better. I'm not sure.

Actually excluding the notes from the chord by using new implied chords might change my perception. So instead of Fm7, do an Fsus for example. Instead of A7 do Asus. etc.
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#1507266 - 09/01/10 03:27 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: scepticalforumguy]
beeboss Online   content
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Originally Posted By: scepticalforumguy
I would even add that it may not even be a restriction necessarily, but rather a starting point. This is looking at the melodic note choices (those outlined and contained in the melody) and primarily using those to join the chords together. This is what linear playing is, isn't it? So, although it may seem limiting to some, I've found it to be helpful in reviewing the tune.


That's right I think. It is restrictive in the sense there are less notes to choose from but it is not creatively or melodically or emotionally restrictive. It is just a way of getting more out of less.
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#1507274 - 09/01/10 03:48 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
beeboss Online   content
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Originally Posted By: jazzwee

However, I still have concerns about the artificiality of the exercise when you didn't really limit the notes as it is still stated in the LH. In that sense, it didn't sound all that different. In fact, it requires me to listen more closely because it's hard to detect a difference.

If you played a shell voicing on the LH, and actually skipped those important notes like 3rds as would be implied by using a Bb scale, I'd really be able to hear better what the effect is. Or better yet, skip the LH completely and see if the solo stands by itself.

I presume the end result desired is to see if limiting the notes changed the way the tune was played (freshened it) or made it better. I'm not sure.



After the discussion on melody in which, I think, it was generally acknowledged that simple is good, then this is a good technique for getting simple and so it may help melodic playing.

I am not concerned by not playing different notes in the LH as we use this approach all the time - if we are playing a blues we may use blues scale in the RH and keep the LH playing the same voicings as before, we don't have to change the voicings to play only notes in the blues scale.
There are other ways of restricting what we play to force simplification, we could just use chord tones, or blues scale, or play no 1/8 notes, or only play 3 notes in a bar, or probably many others.
Only playing shell voicings or leaving out the LH completely are also good ways.
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#1507282 - 09/01/10 04:03 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
Wizard of Oz Offline
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hey guys, good to hear the various approaches you are taking with Stella.

I played around with it today, assimilating the chords. Basically I played the voicing in the left and kept with a Bb maj melody in the right, with the knowledge that I can use non-diatonic notes if the chord has one.

So like the Em7 b5, I might play an E natural as a passing tone in the right melody.


What I never could get is the normal scale/chord method, where each bar you switch to the scale corresponding to that chord. So in your mind you are constantly shifting chords rather than go with the key.


Another song I like is Never Let me Go. For that the melody does change keys every few bars so you can't do the above approach.

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#1507329 - 09/01/10 05:44 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
KlinkKlonk Offline
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You can also use the melody as target notes, like this
http://www.freejazzinstitute.org/showposts.php?dept=analysis&topic=20070712153138_EdByrne
quote from that article:

"Don’t build your improvisations on the non-essential chordal accompaniment; it is even less important for that purpose in this through-composed piece (no repeated sections), since this tune never modulates from its primary key of Bb Major. If you feel you must think chords, however, there really are only a few worth bearing in mind, such as: the Ab7 in mm.8 and 21, and the G+7 in mm.17-18 and 24—all of which occur in prominent places, and contain chord tones that are chromatic the key. "


Edited by KlinkKlonk (09/01/10 05:46 PM)

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#1507352 - 09/01/10 06:21 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: KlinkKlonk]
scepticalforumguy Offline
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Registered: 04/18/08
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Loc: Lower Mainland, BC
Originally Posted By: KlinkKlonk
You can also use the melody as target notes, like this
http://www.freejazzinstitute.org/showposts.php?dept=analysis&topic=20070712153138_EdByrne
quote from that article:

"Don’t build your improvisations on the non-essential chordal accompaniment; it is even less important for that purpose in this through-composed piece (no repeated sections), since this tune never modulates from its primary key of Bb Major. If you feel you must think chords, however, there really are only a few worth bearing in mind, such as: the Ab7 in mm.8 and 21, and the G+7 in mm.17-18 and 24—all of which occur in prominent places, and contain chord tones that are chromatic the key. "

This all makes sense to me except the last line "..[Ab7 and G+7] contain chord tones that are chromatic (sic) the key." Is this non information? Isn't every note that is not in the diatonic key contained in the chromatic key? What is he saying here and what is the importance of it?
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#1507365 - 09/01/10 06:45 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
KlinkKlonk Offline
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Posts: 355
Yea I didn't get that either. I have his book, I'll check it tomorrow, maybe he elaborated it a bit.
It's a nice concept, he talks about embellishing the reduced melody notes with chromatic target groups. Opened up some doors to me.

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#1507366 - 09/01/10 06:50 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Offline
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I finally got a little time to try this out completely, with my full attention on BbMaj.

And I was actually surprised how little reason you have to deviate from BbMaj on this tune. I thought it was harmonically more interesting to really focus on Fm7 (Ab) but the rest seems to be as Ed Byrne says. The Fm7 wasn't truly essential I suppose since it just had the feeling of staying in place.

I didn't find it particularly limiting actually because all I thought about was making melodies and for whatever reason it worked here.

Even the G+7 wasn't that big of a deal. Just the Ab7 is the only major deal. And of course you have to play the E in E-7b5.

It's funny how it seemed to not make sense in theory, but works well in practice.

I suppose I could have just recorded the practice session and recorded it but I really didn't know what would happen.
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#1507407 - 09/01/10 08:27 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
knotty Offline
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Thanks for the comments on my post.

Dave,
very nice version of Stella.
Where did you get the backing track?
And what kind of keyboard are you playing? Sounds really good.

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#1507551 - 09/02/10 04:51 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: knotty]
beeboss Online   content
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Hi Knotty,
glad you liked it
backing track is Aerbersold I think.
if you pm me i can send it to you
my piano is a yamaha c5
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#1507705 - 09/02/10 10:59 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
knotty Offline
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Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 2991
Loc: Bethesda, MD (Washington D.C)
>> my piano is a yamaha c5
that's one well-tuned, good sounding piano!

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#1507831 - 09/02/10 01:59 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
beeboss Online   content
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Registered: 07/18/09
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Yeah, I love it. It is such a joy to have a decent piano, finally.
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#1508528 - 09/03/10 03:20 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
Wizard of Oz Offline
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Registered: 08/12/09
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hey, a fun topic: What's the best jazz show(s) you've seen live?

For me it's usually some new talent that isn't well known. I saw Gretchen Parlato last year with Taylor Eigsti and she just astonished me. Haven't heard a jazz singer like that ever.

Another guy was Mario Canonge, a pianist from the Carribean. This guy just brought a raw energy and passion to the music.


Conversely, any artists that didn't live up to expectations?

I saw Brad Mehldau and didn't really like his style, maybe he was hyped up too much but I didn't enjoy it.

I think the big names can be too polished, I wouldn't go see Diana Krall even though she's from the same province and probably the biggest jazz star here.


There's still a few legends that I need to see, Herbie, Keith, Shorter...

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#1508686 - 09/03/10 08:42 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
scepticalforumguy Offline
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Please don't burn me at the stake, but I saw Herbie and Shorter when they were here about 4 years ago and I wasn't moved at all. And to boot, Shorter was playing probably a quarter-tone sharp (well, a slight exaggeration..) all night, and I couldn't enjoy his playing. Somehow the whole night seemed too esoteric for me. Maybe if I saw them today I'd appreciate it more, but I'm not sure of that.

Also, I was pretty disappointed with a KJ concert that I saw here too. I was in the nose-bleed section, and he was complaining about feedback on a particular note on his opening tune, which he stopped in the middle of(ONE note, f#4 I think it was, so it was used a lot), and as a result he asked the moniters ALL MONITERS and SPEAKERS to be turned off. Being in the balcony left me as well as everyone else with a teensy weensy view of the trio, and an even smaller sound. I truly wanted to kill him for that. $120 down the drain, and no apologies.


The best concert I've ever seen was Bela Fleck and the Flecktones with Victor Wooten and his brother on bass and drums. As I remember, there were some sound problems that night too, but they didn't care, and produced some of the most sublime sounds I've ever heard before or since then.
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#1508842 - 09/04/10 06:27 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Intermediate/Advanced Players [Re: scepticalforumguy]
beeboss Online   content
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Loc: uk south

Originally Posted By: scepticalforumguy

Please don't burn me at the stake, but I saw Herbie and Shorter when they were here about 4 years ago and I wasn't moved at all. And to boot, Shorter was playing probably a quarter-tone sharp (well, a slight exaggeration..) all night, and I couldn't enjoy his playing


I can understand that. Wayne is getting quite old now and technically a little past his best. I have seen him many many times over the years but the only times I have been dissapointed with the music was in the period just after he left weatehr report.

Originally Posted By: scepticalforumguy

Also, I was pretty disappointed with a KJ concert that I saw here too. I was in the nose-bleed section, and he was complaining about feedback on a particular note on his opening tune, which he stopped in the middle of(ONE note, f#4 I think it was, so it was used a lot), and as a result he asked the moniters ALL MONITERS and SPEAKERS to be turned off.


I can understand your disappointment here as well. Virtually unamplified piano trio in a large concert hall is just not that great. I have had that experience listening to Jarrett. I saw him about a year ago in London and was quite near the front and it was much better than previously, but if I had seen that gig in a jazz club it would have been the best gig ever. This is why I only really like smaller venues.

I have seen too many amazing gigs to have a best one, but one that comes to mind was Zawinuls last gig in London. I was standing right up the front, so close that my girlfriend actually bumped her head on his synth. I don't know if he knew it was a farewell performance but the whole gig from the first to last note was unbelievable.
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