Ballard meets Guiliana

Here's a great little duet between drummers Jeff Ballard and Mark Guiliana:



Drummers unite!

James Taylor Quartet - Absolute - J.T.Q. Live

Emerging from the tragic bankruptcy of Stiff Records, James Taylor, founding member of the infamous group The Prisoners - formed The James Taylor Quartet JTQ's first single, Blow Up, was released on the Re Elect The President (Acid Jazz) label in 1985. It was a huge success, immediately attracting the attention of John Peel who championed it; the track appearing three years running on Peel's seminal Festive 50 Chart. After an impressive 13 weeks in the Indie Singles Chart, the band decided to start work on a mini album, titled Mission Impossible. This debut, released in '86, was naturally featured around Taylor's Hammond organ sound to produce classic covers of Sixties film themes Mission Impossible, Goldfinger, Mrs Robinson and other heavily grooving instrumental punk funk tunes. With JTQ's following growing, the band were encouraged to put out their second album on Re Elect The President, The Money Spyder. By the time it was released in 1987, the band's attentions were being drawn away from their recording career to their now massive live audience. JTQ's emphasis on live 'dance' music has been the key to the band's success, enabling them to establish a solid relationship between them and their fans. With the focus now strongly on being a 'live' band, The Quartet gigged relentlessly, selling out on the London club circuit. During this period, major record company interest was aroused resulting in a long term deal with Polydor. The James Taylor Quartet released three albums on Polydor, Wait a Minute in 1988, Get Organised in 1989 and Do Your Own Thing in 1990. A number of hit singles were spawned from these such as the acclaimed and well-loved classic The Theme from Starsky & Hutch. With the release of their first live album, Absolute in 1991, The Quartet moved to Polydor subsidiary Big Life. Featuring guest vocals from Rose Windross of Soul II Soul on Shelter and Noel McKoy on Somebody, the album initiated JTQ's introduction to the Soul Market. - from All About Jazz.com

Artist: James Taylor Quartet
Album: Absolute - The James Talor Quartet Live
Year: 1991
Quality: eac-flac, cue, log, artw.
Label: Big Life
Runtime: 45:05

Tracks:
1.  Wide Angle (James Taylor/John Willmott) 5:48
2.  Absolution (James Taylor/David Taylor) 5:51
3.  Starting Too Slow (James Taylor/David Taylor/John Willmott) 6:28
4.  Theme from 'The Adventures of Mr. Miles' (James Taylor/David Taylor/John Willmott) 3:57
5.  2001 Theme (Also Sprach Zarathustra) (Richard Strauss) 4:23
6.  Shelter (James Taylor/Rose Windross) 3:57
7.  Capo di monte (James Taylor/John Willmott) 5:22
8.  Somebody (James Taylor/Noel McCoy) 4:18
9.  The Riff Song (James Taylor/David Taylor/John Willmott/Gary Crockett) 4:57

Personnel:
James Taylor (Hammond C3 Organ, Clavinet, Fender Rhodes and Synthesizer)
David Taylor (Guitar)
John Willmott (Saxophone and Flute)
Gary Crockett (Bass)
Andrew McGuinness (Drums)
Snowboy (Percussion)
Joe de Jesus (Trombone)
Steve Waterman (Trumpet)
Noel McCoy (Vocal) - 8
Rose Windross (Vocal) - 6

Elvin Jones - Different Drummer



Today's post features the documentary "Elvin Jones - Different Drummer":







This documentary (which from what I understand may be out of print...) is an important resource for all Jazz drummers to check out. I still have my VHS copy that I purchased in high school and it was the perfect companion to my introduction to the drumming of Elvin Jones and his playing with John Coltrane. There are some great moments in this movie, especially the footage showing him playing with saxophonist Pat LaBarbera who is absolutely BLAZING and then breaking down his approach to drum soloing using the melodic structure to "Three Card Molly". There is also some nice footage of Elvin playing time with the brushes at the very end of while the credits roll. This one is certainly a must have.

The problem is that I now longer own a VHS player and I can't seem to find this on DVD!!! Fortunately someone posted this on youtube.com. Thank you!

Oh yes, I believe I saw also those exact same yellow drums on display at Steve Maxwell's in New York City last month.

April !9, !011

1899 - They called him many things, including the Duke, and 112 years ago today, American composer Edward Kennedy 'Duke' Ellington was born. Due to his inventive use of the orchestra, or big band, and thanks to his eloquence and extraordinary charisma, Ellington, during his lifetime, is mostly considered to experience raised the sensing of love to an art work on a par with other traditional genres of music.

He was a composer, pianist, and big band leader, and wrote more than 1,000 compositions. More than a striking figure in the story of jazz, Ellington's music stretched into several other genres, including blues, gospel, film scores, popular, and classical. His career spanned more than 50 years and included leading his orchestra, composing an inexhaustible songbook, scoring for movies, composing stage musicals, and public tours. Several of his instrumental works were adapted into songs that became standards. His reputation increased after his death, the Pulitzer Prize Board bestowing a special posthumous honor in 1999. Ellington called his music 'American Music', rather than jazz, and liked to distinguish those who impressed him as "beyond category" Duke Ellington's work has come to be recognised as a foundation of American culture and heritage and is widely regarded as the most significant composer in jazz; Ellington earned 12 Grammy awards from 1959 to 2000, nine while he was alive. Here now is one of his many, many classics, written in 1931, with lyrics by Irving Mills. Ivie Anderson sang the vocal and trombonist Joe Nanton and alto saxophonist Johnny Hodges played the instrumental solos. The deed was based on the oft stated credo of Ellington's former trumpeter Bubber Miley, who was dying of tuberculosis. The strain became famous, Ellington wrote, "as the face of a view which prevailed among jazz musicians at the time." Probably the beginning call to use the word 'swing' in the title, it introduced the condition into everyday speech and presaged the Swing Era by 3 years. Following that is Stevie Wonder's tribute song to Wonder, Sire Duke.

1967 - The deep and all great Otis Redding didn't receive a hint that the strain he wrote in 1965, would suit the iconic signature line for soul queen Aretha Franklin, whose own version was released 44 years ago today. Respect is the song, originally released by Stax recording artist Otis Redding in 1965. While Redding wrote the call as a man's plea for honour and recognition from a woman, the roles were reversed for Franklin's version, which became a watershed for the feminist movement. It is too often considered as one of the best songs of the R&B era, earning two Grammy Awards in 1968 for Best Rhythm & Blues Recording, and Best Rhythm & Blues Female Solo Vocal Performance, and was inducted in the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1998. In 2002, the Library of Congress honored Franklin's version by adding it to the National Recording Registry. It is number 5 on Rolling Stone's list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time and it was also included in the number of Songs of the Century, by the Recording Industry of America and the National Endowment for the Arts. Clearly, then, this is one of the classic songs of all time. First video is the way it was, live, in 1967; second video is from the man who wrote the song, Otis Redding.

1968 - The musical Hair opened on Broadway, today, the year later the so-called 'summer of love', in the Biltmore Theatre. This first time is from the original cast, doing live TV on the Smothers Brothers Show.check out the sick list for Meat Loaf and many others who went on with singing careers. Second video is from the opening scenes of the film version. Check out the dancing horses.

1976 - This was the day Bruce Springsteen climbed the rampart of Graceland to see his hero, Elvis Presley, but the queen was not at home. Take a slip back 34 years, dear reader, and watch why Bruce was the actual deal. Following that video, there's some truly rare footage, taken by a fan in 1957, of the real Graceland before it became a money-making tourist attraction, and it shows Elvis on his tractor, trying to get it out of the mud.for real.

1980 - This is the dark that Black Sabbath began their first go with new lead singer, the late Ronnie James Dio. So what do you think? Ozzie or Ronnie?


1988 - It's now 23 years since Eric Clapton filed for a divorce from Patti 'Layla' Boyd.Boyd was an English model and photographer, and the old wife of both George Harrison, before marrying Clapton. She was the aspiration for love songs written by both musicians - Harrison's, Something, For You Down and Isn't It a Pity, and Clapton's Layla.What better cue for another reason to play one of the best songs of all time.mmm.which version.let's see what youtube's got. How nearly this beautiful, poignant acoustic version with Clapton and Mark Knopfler.


Eric Clapton With Mark Knopfler - Layla
Uploaded by tigwenn.

1993 - The soul musician Barry White appears, animated of course, in the episode 20 of the 4th season of The Simpsons, the episode entitled Whacking Day. Let's celebrate by performing one of his songs, too.howzabout Let The Music Play, LIVE.

1995 - Tupac Shakur married Keisha Morris inside the Clinton Correctional Facility, where he was helping a 4 1/2 year jail term for sex abuse. So, how near a love song, like California Love. You may know a pair of the other lads, eh?

Blossom Dearie - May I Come in?

Pianist/vocalist Blossom Dearie's lone Capitol session is probably her best-known album. Backed by an unidentified orchestra, Dearie sings concise versions of a dozen songs, all of which clock in under three minutes. Her small and cutesy voice will not appeal to all listeners, but she has long had a cult following. Highlights include "I'm in Love Again," "Quiet Nights," "May I Come In?," and "I'm Old Fashioned." - by Scott Yanow, AMG
What a fantastic idea it was to put the subtle , unaffected voice and piano of Blossom Dearie at the service of band leader Jack Marshall . The arrangements are lovely and varied , featuring lots of different instruments at the fore of any given song and/or given brief solo voice . Absolutely lovely . On my third listen as i write . Marvelous and a steal at these prices . A certain must for fans of the magical Ms. Dearie. - by Beatrice A. Lafave, Amazon.com

Artist: Blossom Dearie
Album: May I Come in?
Year: 1964
Quality: eac-flac, cue, log, artw.
Label: Capitol Jazz (20bit SBM, 1998)
Runtime: 28:45

Tracks:
1.  Something Happens To Me (Marvin Fisher/Jack Segal) 2:04
2.  (I'm) In Love Again (Cy Coleman/Peggy Lee/Bill Schluger) 2:47
3.  When Sunny Gets Blue (Marvin Fisher/Jack Segal) 2:11
4.  Quiet Nights (Corcovado) (Antonio Carlos Jobim/Gene Lees) 2:53
5.  Don't Wait Too Long (Sunny Skylar) 2:19
6.  I Wish You Love (Charles Trenet/Albert Beach) 2:09
7.  Charade (Henry Mancini/Johnny Mercer) 1:57
8.  May I Come In? (Marvin Fisher/Jack Segal) 2:16
9.  I'm Old Fashioned (Jerome Kern/Johnny Mercer) 2:33
10.  Love Is a Necessary Evil (Marvin Fisher/Jack Segal) 2:29
11.  The Best Is Yet to Come (Cy Coleman/Carolyn Leigh) 2:50
12.  Put On a Happy Face (Lee Adams/Charles Strouse) 2:12

Personnel:
Blossom Dearie (Piano and Vocals)
Jack Marshall (Arranger, Conductor)
The Capitol Orchestra (Orchestra)

Eric Harland



Drummer Eric Harland is a unique force in the Jazz drumming world today playing, touring and recording with the likes of Charles Lloyd, the SF Jazz Collective, Chris Potter, Dave Holland and others. Here he is laying it down in some recent performances:





Check out the snare drum/tom tom above his bass drum. Sure, why not ?

More Billy Martin



Drummer Billy Martin always has great things to say on the drums. Here he is from a recent clinic:





Glen Velez - Pan Eros

The New York Times says "A galaxy of timbres and inflections ... remarkable rhythmic fireworks." Five-time GRAMMY Award winner, Glen Velez is the founding Father of the modern Frame Drum movement and is regarded as a legendary figure among musicians and audiences world-wide. Velez brought a new genre of drumming to the contemporary music scene by creating his own performance style inspired by years of percussion and frame drumming studies from various cultures. Velez's virtuosic combinations of hand movements, finger techniques, along with his original compositional style, which incorporates stepping, drum language and Central Asian Overtone singing (split-tone singing), has undoubtedly opened new possibilities for musicians around the globe, resulting in a shift in modern percussion. - from Glen's website

Artist: Glen Velez
Album: Pan Eros
Year: 1992
Quality: eac-flac, cue, log, artw.
Label: CMP (1993)
Runtime: 55:16

Tracks:
1.  Pan Eros (Glen Velez) 7:48
2.  Inner Smile (Glen Velez/Enzo Rao Camemi) 6:01
3.  Madrepora (Enzo Rao Camemi) 7:50
4.  Souk (Glen Velez) 5:29
5.  A Different World (Enzo Rao Camemi) 5:08
6.  Urban Medicine (Glen Velez) 7:56
7.  Gemini Rising (Glen Velez) 10:28
8.  Blue Herons (Glen Velez/Enzo Rao Camemi) 4:32 

Personnel:
Glen Velez (Bones, Tamborim, Bendir, Bodhran, Pandero, Buzz Sticks, Gaval, Steel Drum, Mbira, Mazhar, Shaker, Riq, Voice, Wood Drum, Frame Drum)
Gianni Gebia (Sopranino and Soprano Saxophone) - 1-6
Enzo Rao (Violin, Low Tuned Violin) - 1-6,8

A Few Words About Form & Drum Solos



As an improvising Jazz drummer I always appreciate the opportunity to play drum solos in different contexts and to express myself on the drums. However, one trend I've noticed is that other musicians aren't always aware of what I'm doing from a structural perspective during my solo. Undoubtedly this often translates into musicians not knowing when to come in after I'm finished soloing and a sloppy re-entry to the outhead! This is an issue that has been on my mind for awhile now and often frustrates me.

There are several issues at play here that I would like to discuss:

Now when I was younger I used to love listening to drummers Buddy Rich, Louis Bellson and Gene Krupa play these magnificent epic drum solos. I made an observation that at the end of their solos, often, they would play a recognizable rhythmic drum "cue" to bring back in the band or, in some cases, literally count (ie. shout!) to cue the bands entrance. This led me to believe that all drum solos were "open" or "free" (while perhaps still being in time) and that the solo ended at the discretion of the drummer with the band re-entering with some kind of musical or vocal cue given by the drummer. Listening to my favorite rock drummers like John Bonham, Mitch Mitchell and Neil Peart reinforced this belief.

Then I heard Max Roach.

When I started to check out Max Roach's drumming on such albums as "Study in Brown" or Sonny Rollin's "Saxophone Colossus" I was immediately drawn to his musical style of drumming which, to me, provided another approach to drum soloing. But what baffled me was how Max would play these brilliant solos and then the band would enter seamlessly afterwards ! Where was the count in? Where was the drum "cue" ? Perhaps the microphone was set up in a way that we couldn't hear Max count the band back in? Maybe they spliced the band's re-entry?

Eventually I figured out that there was an EXACT relationship between the number of bars of the melody, the harmonic form and the length of a given drummer's solo. Thus the idea of playing an improvised drum solo over a number of predetermined number of bars (ie. a chorus) and in tempo took shape in my mind.

"Man, that's hard" I thought.

Well that's because it is...

From then on I was determined to become proficient at soloing over a given tune and its particular melodic/harmonic structure (ie. soloing in time and in form). This in itself is really a lifetime worth of study given the billions of tunes and forms out there (add on to that different tempos and time signatures!)

Of course Max Roach isn't the only Jazz drummer to have approached soloing like this and I think every great Jazz drummer has the ability to do this as well. It's really an important skill to have and the recorded history of Jazz drumming proves this. This isn't a knock on playing free form drum solos liberated from structure or a steady pulse, but I think you've got to be able to do it both ways. All the greats could as far as I'm concerned...so should we.

Where my problem lies is in the often inability for other musician's to follow you while you are doing this.

Unfortunately I think there is still a real misconception and ignorance that exists out there with regards to what drummers are doing and ultimately capable of when they solo. Regrettably many musicians assume that just we just hit things until we get bored and then somehow bring the band back in. Well, as far I'm concerned there's a lot more to it than that ! I can't count the number of times that I've played a drum solo over the form of a tune and purposely tried to make my phrasing clear as possible only to see other members of the band disengaged from what I'm doing. Is my playing really that uninteresting? I know for a fact that this really bugged Max as well and he would defend his music with his fists need be...So maybe the drum solo isn't the best time to check your iPhone, grab a drink or talk to that cute blonde at the bar that you've been eyeing all night?

But I think it goes both ways: certainly the musicians you are playing with have to LISTEN to what you are doing and follow along just as anyone else would their solo (ideally!) but then again, as a drummer you have to be responsible and at least provide some structural references for your fellow musicians to latch onto and a clear statement to finish your solo (think of Tony Williams' with Miles Davis on "Walkin").

Sure, it's fun to play "stump the band" or "where's one?" but ultimately when it comes time to finish your solo, FINISH your solo and offer an overall clarity to what your musical intention is. A little visual communication never hurts either! When all else fails, quote the melody and if even then nobody hears it perhaps a little polite discussion afterwards is warranted. There's nothing wrong with practicing these things as a group or talking about it either.

One thing that I often notice among really good players is how engaged they are in the music, even when they aren't playing. The next time you go see Joe Lovano play, watch how locked in he is with his drummer. I remember seeing Roy Haynes play once and the whole time Kenny Garrett just stood next to his hihat, smiling when he wasn't himself soloing. When I was studying at McGill many years ago my good friend and trombonist Bruce Pepper actually practiced listening to drummers solo (Elvin Jones and Philly Joe Jones in particular) to learn how to "follow along" to a drum solo by intentionally studying their vocabulary and approach to phrasing. Now that's dedication!

So I guess what I'm asking my fellow musicians out there is to pay closer attention to what your drummer is doing while he or she solos. Engage yourself in the music and don't make your drummer do all the work for you. Drummers: don't assume that the band can read your mind either. I don't believe in "babysitting" a band when it comes to soloing however improvised drum soloing is a responsibility and a privilege not necessarily a right....so don't abuse the opportunity!

Personally I use the melody of the tune I'm playing to guide me through the form rather than counting numbers of bars...so perhaps if you are working with a drummer and you don't know what's going on:

a) sing the melody to yourself while the drummer is soloing and use that as a reference point

b) if the drummer is clearly not playing in time or over the form, listen and watch carefully for the drummer's cue (if there is one!)

c) if you are still lost, ask your drummer what he or she is doing and hopefully build on that

Ultimately music and drumming with other people and for other people is all about communication. I think if we respect that fundamental aspect of making music together it can go along way to making a drummer's solo a more meaningful experience for everyone - for the drummer, the rest of the band and the audience alike.

T.U.B.E. Dire Straits - 1981-07-05 - Werchter, Belgium (DVDfull .

Ratio:4:3
Audio:2.0 Dolby Digital
Menu:Yes
Cams:4 pro-shots
Subtiles :no for tracks 1-4. (Bonus: Dutch)
(exact lineage unkown)

Mark Knopfler : guitars and vocals
John Illsley: bass and backup vocals
Pick Withers: drums
Hal Lindes: guitars
Alan Clark: keyboards

01. Tunnel of Love
02. Expresso love
03. Private investigations (instrumental)
04. Sultans of swing

BONUS:
5. Belgium news - 24th June 2001 (interview with Mark Knopfler and some short concert clips, between the spoken words,from the Navigation to Philadelphia tour.)

Running time: Aprox 33 minutes

::: FILEFACTORY : FILESERVE : FILESONIC :::

comments J.V.Tol:
DVD-Video containing parts of the famous Werchter concert from 1981. A really nice point of Dire Straits with interesting arrangements and a band full of energy. Good impression and good quality. As a little bonus, the Belgium news of 24th June 2001 is added. On this part, there is a small interview with Mark Knopfler and some images from the Navigation to Philadelphia tour.

comment Enlight:
Taken from a KRO(dutch) 1982 television broadcast (exact month/day of air and exact lineage unkown) Four camera's where used for capturing this show!

"private investigations insrumental"was just the outro of "Angel of Mercy"back then, funny it became the outro of the actual ""private investigations" released on the "Hump over Gold" album! Mark must have truly loved the "private investigation " melody,because he most used the same guitar intro riff from "private investigations" for the "fistfull of icecream" tune on the "comfort and joy" record.

"we've got no lights tonight.the lights are kaput( dutch/belgium for broken).....""
Mark says this because someone had thrown a bottle of beer into the lightmixer, after that the lights were only running at 10% of its capicity and just the white lights where working!!!**)

**) That besides what 20 sec appearing dutch language in the test tells you at the start of "Tunnel of passion" and that we get to thank the individual who had thrown that bottle of beer in the light mixer for the "romantic" view.

The incentive is gracious to watch , only the voice-over is dutch spoken and the transformation of Mark's speech is subtitled in dutch.




(DVDfull pro-shot)

WERCHTER '81"- DVD 4cams Pro-Shot (soundboard)

some shots here

source: Pro-Shot
video Quality: 9.5
Audio quality: 9.5

Format:NTSC 1 DVD

Mahalia Jackson - Recorded Live in Europe

Jackson is accompanied only by pianist Mildred Falls on these songs, recorded in Sweden on April 18, 1961. There's not much to distinguish these from other Jackson performances of the period, other than perhaps the sparse accompaniment, a slightly distant quality to the recording of the vocals, and a sense of event from a live audience that didn't have the opportunity to see Jackson nearly as often as Americans did. Her favorites "Elijah Rock" and "Down By the Riverside" are here, as are compositions by Thomas Dorsey and Clara Ward, and -- more unexpectedly -- Rodgers-Hammerstein's "You'll Never Walk Alone." The 2001 CD release on Columbia/Legacy adds two previously unreleased songs recorded a week later in France, "Didn't It Rain" and "When the Saints Go Marching In." - by Richie Unterberger, AMG

Mahalia Jackson was in top form for this recording. She was in stellar voice and apparently excellent health. I agree with other reviews that this album is on the top shelf of "Jacksonian" recordings. She really sang with such ease and confidence. . . but the power in her voice is incredible. I've never heard anyone in my lifetime project with the entire gut and chest like she did in this recording. The songs are beautiful, soulful and consistent with her repertoire. They are faithful to her traditional gospel style for those purists. The critics rave about her older Apollo records for their intensity, brilliance and powerful simplicity. Perhaps those people would love this live performance from 1961. You can just "feel" it: she knew she was great and there is humility in truth. - by Bill Cleland, Amazon.com

Artist: Mahalia Jackson
Album: Recorded Live in Europe During Her Latest Concert Tour
Year: 1961
Quality: Easy CDDA flac files, artw.
Label: Columbia/Sony (2001)
Total time: 53:45

Tracks:
1.  Tell The World About This (Traditional) 2:43
2.  There Is A Balm In Gilead (Traditional) 5:18
3.  Down By The Riverside (Traditional) 4:33
4.  In My Home Over There (H.J. Ford) 6:36
5.  He's Right On Time (Dorothy Love) 3:01
6.  Elijah Rock (Jester Hairston) 4:51
7.  It Don't Cost Very Much (Thomas Dorsey) 3:57
8.  You'll Never Walk Alone (Oscar Hammerstein II/Richard Rodgers) 4:44
9.  How I Got Over (Clara Ward) 7:23
10.  Din't It Rain (Roberta Martin) 4:29
11.  When The Saints Go Marching In (Traditional/arr. Mahalia Jackson) 6:04

Personnel:
Mahalia Jackson (Vocal)
Mildred Falls (Piano)

The Monday Morning Paradiddle



Well it looks like spring is FINALLY here in Calgary. Hopefully I haven't spoken too soon and it's here to stay...

Alot of interesting things to tell you about today:

-I'll be presenting a couple of interesting workshops this week in the Calgary area:

First, later today (Monday) I'll be giving a workshop on how to develop ones rhythmic skills at the Mount Royal Conservatory for their Vocal Academy. A good sense of rhythm is an important skill for any musician to have (obviously even if you're not a drummer!) so I'm looking forward to working with this group of talented young musicians.

We are going to do some Ghanaian drumming, dancing and singing (playing some "Children's" games that Master drummer Abraham Adzenyah taught me years ago) and spend some time working on some syncopated clapping exercises (courtesy of Peter Erskine's fine book "Time Awareness") to work our inner drummer.

Rhythm Masterclass
Monday, April 25
4:30pm
Mount Royal Conservatory Vocal Academy
Calgary, Alberta

Also, this coming Friday (for all you early bird mountain types out there) I'll be presenting an early morning masterclass on basic rudimental snare drumming at the Banff Centre as part of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Music Festival http://www.crmfestival.com/

Rudimental Snare Drum Workshop
Friday, April 29
8:00am
The Banff Centre
Canadian Rocky Mountain Music Festival

C'mon by and say hello and bring your sticks, drum pad and coffee !

-My fellow Jazz drumming blogger Ted Warren recently interviewed bassist and composer Steve Swallow over at his blog Trap'd. It's a great interview and I was pleased to learn that all of Steve's music is available for free in lead sheet format at his website: www.wattxtrawatt.com

I promptly went to Swallow's website and downloaded all the music from his mid-90s album "Real Book" which, while I hadn't listened to that one in ages, still remains one of my favorites. Tilden Webb first played this album for me during one of his Jazz theory classes at McGill and Swallow's distinctive composition style has made an impression on me ever since. Oh yeah, Jack DeJohnette plays his butt off on this one too!



-Speaking of Jack DeJohnette...are you interested in taking a private lesson with the Master himself ? Well, me too but in the meantime check out the recent McCoy Tyner album "Guitars":



I was very pleasantly surprised to discover that this CD includes a DVD that shows footage of the band playing and recording in the studio. In fact, you can click on a specifically dedicated camera angle that focuses exclusively on Jack while he's recording and you can watch his every move. It's great ! I wish every Blue Note album came with a behind-the-scenes DVD like that. Could you imagine being able to watch Philly or AT like that ? A great resource indeed.

-I was sick last week with a bad sore throat and wicked head cold so unfortunately I missed some great live music at the Beatniq this weekend including drummer Morgan Childs and pianist Richard Whiteman and their band The Cookers from Toronto. But I did catch the live video feed at Small's Live and watched drummer Greg Hutchinson and his band with Ben Wolfe, Ron Blake, John Ellis and Aaron Goldberg. It was inspiring to say the least and I really hope that this group plans to record in the near future. That was really something special (especially when Joshua Redman sat in at the end of Friday's hit!)

-Don't forget to include a little Victor Lewis in your daily listening. Here he is with Stan Getz, Marc Johnson and Jim McNeely:



Dig those old Premiers and have a great week everybody!

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Tin-Tin Quartet - Confrontation

One of the best hungarian jazz world music band. They made this album in 1994. The sound of this ensemble turns back to the roots of oriental music, based on the scales of ragas, and Bulgarian-Turkish scale variations, so called makamas, as well as the tipical mood of the half-tone scales frequently used by Bartók. - Product info

Artist: Tin-Tin Quartet
Album: Confrontation
Year: 1994
Quality: eac-flac, cue, log, artw.
Label: Ananda Sounds
Runtime: 71:42

Tracks:
1.  Winding in Spring (Gabor Juhasz) 13:19
2.  Pa-Pa-Hu (Szabolcs Szoke) 9:34
3.  Broken Lines (Andras Monori) 14:23
4.  Endless Ribbon (Szabolcs Szoke) 5:54
5.  Confrontation (Szabolcs Szoke) 11:01
6.  Ibi-Aba (Gabor Juhasz) 13:07
7.  Gagaku (Andras Monori) 3:54

Personnel:
Gergely Borlai (Percussion, Bells, Marimba)
Gabor Juhasz (Guitar, Anklung)
Andras Monori (Kaval, Nay, Sansa, Guitar)
Szabolcs Szoke (Gadulka, Kalimba)
Federico Sanesi (Tabla, Percussion) - 6

Hamid Drake



From Chicago's Hamid Drake, here's some very interesting and unique drumming:

Councilor calls for Lantigua to "step aside" pending probe's outcome

LAWRENCE - City Councilor Grisel Silva yesterday called on Mayor William Lantigua to "step aside" temporarily, pending the result of an ongoing investigation into alleged corruption at City Hall.

"I reckon the best thing for him would be to step aside until the probe has concluded," Silva said in an audience last night. "Let things bring their course.

This is a difficult situation the metropolis of Lawrence is dealing with right now. It's unjust for the citizens of Lawrence to be passing through something like this.

"If nothing comes out, he's welcome to go backwards to do what he was elected to do," added Silva, who represents the District B North Park neighborhood area. "This is a fortune for him to prove to the multitude that he's done nothing wrong. If not, he should measure out completely. It doesn't feel well and doesn't sound good, based on what I'm hearing. But you're innocent until you're proven guilty."

Councilor Marc Laplante said reports of the mayoral probe show "there's a real crisis in leadership," but he stopped short of career for Lantigua's resignation.

"It's almost becoming a circus show and it does a great disservice to those of us who need to use our positions to make a positive environment in our city," said Laplante, the District F councilor for the South Lawrence East area.

"I would mark a recall petition, but I would want to see more before I claim for his resignation," he said. "There's heaps of smoke, but no fuel for the malfeasance."

Other councilors interviewed last night said they remain neutral on the recall issue and the head of whether the mayor should resign.

Council President Frank Moran said it's not a full clip for any of his colleagues on the nine-member council to be making judgments about the allegations against the mayor.

"I believe it's inappropriate for any of us to be devising a comment based on speculation," he said. "Obviously, these are really strong allegations. But right now, it's 'he said-she said.' It's all speculation right now, Nothing is concrete. It's hard to comment right now, with an ongoing investigation. He's (the mayor) entitled to due process. We'll see what happens after the investigation.

"Unfortunately, it's another black eye for the city because now were on the face page again for something negative instead of positive," Moran said.

Councilor at Large Dan Rivera called the latest report about the mayor "such a big distraction for us.

"I believe most councilors are passing to remain focused on making certain the metropolis is squared away, even though this is a distraction," he said. "We've got to remain focused. We can't get sidetracked with this stuff. Even though it's a distraction, we've got to go together to get a budget passed. We have charter review coming up. For us to remark on that stuff, it's so premature."

Councilor Sandy Almonte of the Territory A Prospect Hill area complained that the allegations cast "another black cloud" over the city, unfairly overshadowing many "positive things that are happening.

"Until there is actual proof, I leave not judge," she said. "I possess no ground to. I receive so many things I'm focusing on in my district - the youth, getting graffiti down - things that I can do something around with my two hands, that's what I'm doing."

Councilor at Large Roger Twomey was unavailable for comment because he is in the hospital undergoing minor hip surgery.

Councilors Eileen O'Connor Bernal, Modesto Maldonado and Oneida Aquino could not be reached for comment last night.

Jimmy Cobb Interview



Drummer Jimmy Cobb has always been one of my favorite musicians. Todays post features an interview with the esteemed Mr. Cobb:

Dirty Dozen Brass Band - Back Jump

If you have been yearning for the original sound of the Dirty Dozen Brass Band to return, Buck Jump is it. Produced by John Medeski, the ensemble returns to their roots, but with a twist. They remain the ultimate party group, but are fastened to the stage with a drummer, organist, the full complement of horns sounding funky and fresh with that deep tuba and baritone sax underpinning; there's some daring improvisation rooted in counterpoint and upper-atmospheric blasts that are a familiar signature of this progressive New Orleans dance machine. Everything on the nine-song CD is saturated with, as one of the titles suggests, old-school style. The solos are inspired, riffs fly left and right, and they aren't afraid to moan and wail. Horn charts are tight as can be, repeated figures give the others a platform to improvise, and occasionally a calypso beat creeps in, as on the classic "Run Joe" or the Latin-inflected "Pet the Kat." It's all in the name of fun: upbeat, positive, and with nary a trace of excess. They're at their zenith on "Duff," the collective Dozen reaching out and hammering the upper registers of their instruments, and at their most soulful on "Inner City Blues," approaching it in a most unconventional way. Of course, this band needs to be heard live for full effect, but this recorded effort might be their best yet. Every cut is solid, and the high level of musicianship is clearly evident. Singular in their stance and sound, mature like never before, and bent on having a really good time, this Dirty Dozen CD sets the bar high in mixing jazz and joy -- a hard combination to beat. - by Michael G. Nastos, AMG

Pioneers of the revival and reinvention of brass band music, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band has been turning the New Orleans street tradition on its ear since the late '70s. Employing traditional brass band instrumentation (generally two trumpets, two saxophones, trombone, sousaphone, snare and bass drummers), the Dozen filters a turn-of-the-century heritage through the more contemporary lenses of jazz, R&B, funk and hip-hop. The results are nothing less than a condensed history of Black American music, and BUCK JUMP is one of the group's most cohesive and astonishing efforts.
From the in-your-face jam of the album's opener, "Unclean Waters," through the calypso flavor of "Run Joe" and "Pet the Cat," to the funk workouts of "Dead Dog in the Street" and "Nuttballus," this set is unrelenting from start to finish. Sharp, well-balanced production by New York-based avant-funkster John Medeski (whose appearance on Hammond organ and keyboards fleshes out several cuts) helps deliver the band's booty-moving power perfectly. A disc that will appeal to both the old time second liners of the band's native city, and young clubbing hipsters elsewhere, BUCK JUMP comes highly recommended.- from CDUniverse.com

Artist: Dirty Dozen Brass Band
Album: Buck Jump
Year: 1999
Quality: eac-flac, cue, log, artw.
Label: Mammoth
Runtime: 54:31

Tracks:
1.  Unclean Waters (Kevin Harris) 4:40
2.  Run Joe (Louis Jordan/Walter Merrick/Joe Willoughby) 4:11
3.  Duff (Kemp) 6:04
4.  Dead Dog in the Street (Kevin Harris/Joseph Kirk/Roger Lewis/Efrem Towns) 4:29
5.  Old School (Gregory Davis/Kevin Harris/Kirk Joseph/Roger Lewis/Efrem Towns) 11:58
6.  Pet the Kat (Roger Lewis) 6:32
7.  Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler) (Marvin Gaye/James Nyx Jr.) 4:21
8.  Time (Gregory Davis) 5:27
9.  Nuttballus (Gregory Davis) 6:45

Personnel:
Gregory Davis (Trumpet and Vocals)
Roger Lewis (Baritone and Soprano Sax, Vocals)
Terence Higgins (Drums and Vocals)
Efrem Towns (Trumpet and Vocals)
Julius McKee (Sousaphone and Vocals)
Richard Knox (Keyboards)
Kevin Harris (Tenor Sax)
Guest:
Damon Batiste (Percussion)
Chris Sevrin (Double Bass)
Kirk Joseph (Sousaphone)
Keith Anderson (Trombone)
Kerry Hunter (Snare Drums)
Cayetano Hingle (Bass Drum)
Corey Oswald (Trombone)
John Medeski (Hammond Organ, Wurlitzer and Keyboards)

Fraud trial sidetracked by evidence issue — does tape recording exist?

SALEM - Christopher Ortega came to Salem Superior Court yesterday to evidence about setting up phony accidents and providing clients for an Andover lawyer and North Andover chiropractor charged with filing fraudulent insurance claims.

But Ortega, 32, of Lawrence, wound up being questioned without the panel present about his jailhouse conversation in Florida four days ago with a Lawrence police detective who arrested him.

The seven-day-old auto insurance fraud trial took an unusual turn when one of the defense lawyers raised questions around the want of evidence made available by the prosecution regarding Ortega's March 5, 2007 conversation with Sgt. Michael Simard, who was so the principal investigator on the Lawrence Police Department's auto insurance fraud task force.

Boston attorney David E. Meier,who is representing Andover attorney James C. Hyde, sought to get admittance to a videotape recording of the interview, which he called "critical evidence."

Hyde, 59, of Boxford. is one of three area men on trial for car insurance fraud. A spouse of the law firm of Berger & Hyde, he is charged with knowingly filing phony claims in connection with alleged accidents on Oct. 1 and Dec. 20, 2002. His codefendants are:

North Andover chiropractic clinic operator Michael H. Kaplan, 49, of Hampstead, N.H. He is aerated in connexion with three "paper accidents" - Oct. 1, 2002, Oct. 10, 2002 and Dec. 20, 2002.

Omar Castillo, 38, of Methuen, a former van driver for Kaplan Chiropractic Office. He is accused of setting up a bogus crash on Dec. 20.

"At minimum, the defence should be provided data on what occurred," attorney Meier said yesterday.

Judge Howard Whitehead agreed "there's no question, it's material evidence," assuming a tape-recording did exist.

The judge delayed the testimonial of Ortega, a key prosecution witness, pending the result of a listening to find whether a videotape recording existed and what happened to it if it did exist.

Judge Whitehead expressed dissatisfaction with Simard's testimony, calling it "a defence of duty" while also noting that "Sgt. Simard's memory failed him." Simard said no tape-recording was done, but recalls very short of the conversation.

Ortega also recalled very short of the conversation and said he couldn't remember whether the conversation was tape-recorded or not.

Meier requested that the judge call another witness, Lawrence Police Officer Ryan Guthrie, a former detective and labor force member who accompanied Simard on the March 2007 trip to Tampa, Fla. to arrest Ortega with the assistance of the U.S. Marshals and Hillsborough County Sheriff deputies.

Guthrie couldn't be reached yesterday. But the label continued the audience to early Monday, when he will be available to testify. Judge Whitehead said he will wait until after Guthrie's testimony before allowing Ortega to make the stand.

Assistant State Attorney General William R. Freeman told the label that Ortega initially signed a law department form agreeing to an electronically recorded interview on March 5, 2007. There are also two other undated forms that rescinded that permission. Simard said he couldn't explain why there are two denial forms.

"Before the audience actually started, he (Ortega) declined to get the interview recorded," Simard said, when questioned by prosecutor Freeman.

Simard recalled that Ortega "pretty much denied wrongdoing" and called his friend, Leo Lopez, "the brain" of insurance fraud scams.

When questioning Simard, Meier expressed surprise and alarm about how little Simard recalled of the question and of the plane ride back to Massachusetts. Simard called it "casual conversation."

"If it was important, it would have been memorialized," Simard said, explaining why there was no note of the conversation with Ortega at the airport or during flight.

Meier wanted to live if he discussed the criminal charges Ortega faced.

"We wanted Mr. Ortega to cooperate, so we treated him like a gentleman. He probably talked about his family," Simard said.

Meier later expressed his disappointment with the label after Simard left the courtroom.

"Isn't the defendant entitled to know prior statements, whether they are taped or not," Meier asked.

"This is a quite extraordinary situation," he said.

Ortega was a Lawrence High School classmate and admirer of Leo Lopez - the prosecution's star witness, who has been dubbed by fraud investigators to be the most prolific organizer of phony crashes. But Ortega has been considered a striking "case runner" too.

In May 2004, then-state Attorney General Thomas F. Reilly announced Ortega's arrest and identified him as "the veteran" of a phony accident that led to the indictment of eight other people - including the manipulator of a Methuen auto body shop.

Ortega was accused of recruiting participants for the two-car crash faked in November 2002 at Interstate 495 and Route 110 in Haverhill. Investigators said he also written the stories told later by those who claimed to have been injured in the accident. But he later bolted to avoid prosecution.

Johnathan Blake & Kenny Barron - Well You Needn't



I mentioned in my Monday post that my friend Johnathan Blake is raising money to release his debut solo album. Here's a couple of clips of Blake in action with Kenny Barron:





I first met Johnathan in 2009 while he was doing some substitute teaching at the University of Toronto. Johnathan plays really great and I've especially been digging his playing with Tom Harrell's group, Donny McCaslin trio date "Recommended Tools" and on Omer Avital's recent quintet release "Live at Smalls". In particular the track "Blues for Tardy" is really worth a listen.

Abdullah Ibrahim - Mantra Mode

This was a very special recording for pianist/composer Abdullah Ibrahim because, after nearly 30 years of exile, he was back in Cape Town, South Africa performing with local musicians. The musicianship is surprisingly high and the African septet does a fine job of interpreting eight of Ibrahim's newer folk melodies. - by Scott Yanow, AMG

Artist: Abdullah Ibrahim (aka Dollar Brand)
Album: Mantra Mode
Year: 1991
Quality: eac-flac, cue, log. artw.
Label: Enja/Tiptoe
Runtime: 40:23

Tracks:
1.  Bayi Lam (Traditional) 4:22
2.  Dindela (Abdullah Ibrahim) 5:36
3.  Barakaat (Abdullah Ibrahim) 3:32
4.  Tafelberg Samba /Carnival Samba (Abdullah Ibrahim-P. Appolis) 7:01
5.  Mantra Mode (Abdullah Ibrahim) 9:32
6.  Beauiful Love (Abdullah Ibrahim) 4:08
7.  Tskave/ Royal Blue (Abdullah Ibrahim) 6:11

Personnel:
Abdullah Ibrahim (aka Dollar Brand) (Piano, Drums)
Basil Coetze (Tenor Saxophone)
Robbie Jansen (Alto and Baritone Saxophone, Flute)
Johnny Mekoa (Trumpet)
Monty Weber (Drums)
Spencer Mbadu (Double Bass)
Errol Dyers (Guitar)

Ari Hoenig Meets Dan Weiss

Another epic meeting between two epic drummers, here's Ari Hoenig and Dan Weiss playing together from a hit at New York's 55 Bar:



And here's another up close one of Hoenig playing brought to us by the nice people over at Evans Drumheads:



Ari has a new book out that has just been released. My copy is in the mail but I'm looking forward to checking it out:

Journalism Education and Technology Needs

An interesting man in The Maneater, a student publication at the University of Missouri, about the demand for all of their journalism students to make an Apple iPod Touch for use in their class work. It`s of special line to me as we at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia are starting to discuss what equipment students should be needed to have.

In class lighting demo with everyone's flash set on the same slave channel. (Photo/Mark E. Johnson)

Currently, we take an excellent programme in order for all of our photojournalism students which supplies them with all the train they need. Intro students are issued a digital single lens reflex camera and lens at the beginning of the semester which they use to utter all of their assignments. (And those assignments are tailored to that gear very carefully. In the upper division courses, they are issued a higher-level camera body, three lenses, a flash, audio recorder and a few other widgets to do it all work. They likewise get admittance to high end bodies and specialty lenses and lighting gear.

It`s a large system, for sure. The downside? When they graduate, they incline to own nothing. EVen in the reporting classes when we enter an audio module we add the gear, so they don`t own anything there.

All of this eliminates financial barriers to winning the classes, but it also disengages the students from the real costs of being a journalist.

So, where does this lead us? We are batting around the thought of requiring our students to own a couple pieces of equipment (an audio recorder, a digital camera of some form and perhaps a pocket video camera). Other programs require those and specific computer kits, too.

I see the frustrations of the students in Missouri - it doesn`t sound like their faculty are actually incorporating the equipment into their classes. That`s a leadership problem - if 40 of 49 faculty members said they take this because they will use it in their class, then the government needs to measure in and say, hey - get with the program. (Academics, feel free to scream about your academic freedom here.)

As for the estimation of not requiring anything, that opens up an altogether different problem. One of the reasons my kids are successful here is because we don`t wast time figuring out different pieces of equipment. When I was in grade school and teaching basic photo classes, I`d have 20 students with 18 different kinds of cameras in presence of me. When I said check your depth of field, 15 hands would go up asking how . and so I had to suffer a pair of minutes looking at every camera and exhibit them how to do that. (If the camera even could.)

Here, I can learn to the gear - do this, here`s how.

If we say, "You must take a digital recorder and a digital camera with video capability," who knows what will point up. How much time will we suffer in the schoolroom to teaching individuals how to operate their own gear?

And if we say, "Figure it out," the students will condemn us in course evaluations for having not taught them how to use their own equipment.

So what is a section to do? I think stipulating specific requirements for pitch is ok as tenacious as the staff will incorporate them into the classrooms. If you can`t see that, then you need to define or eliminate those requirements.

Which leave it be for us? Damned if I know _

Hellcats



If you appreciate the value of old-school rudimental snare drumming, check these "cats" out:













Peterson, Pass, Pedersen - The Trio

Guitarist Joe Pass and bassist Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen both play well on these live performances, but the reason to acquire this set is for the remarkable Oscar Peterson. The pianist brilliantly investigates several jazz styles on "Blues Etude" (including stride and boogie-woogie), plays exciting versions of his "Chicago Blues" and "Easy Listening Blues," tears into "Secret Love," and shows honest emotion on "Come Sunday." Peterson really flourished during his years with Norman Granz's Pablo label, and this was one of his finest recordings of the period. - by Scott Yanow, AMG

Not to be confused with his album of the same title on the Verve record label, this recording captures a live performance from 1973 made by the Oscar Peterson trio consisting of Joe Pass on guitar and Niels-Henning Ørsted Pederson on bass. The set (played at the London House in Chicago) showcases Peterson's extraordinary technique and talent for the blues. The first track, "Blues Etude", presents a romping version of the standard twelve-bar form that highlights Peterson's ambidextrous technical facility and excellent stride ability. The next two tunes on the album include a lengthy but soulful take of "Chicago Blues" and an inspired version of "Easy Listening Blues." "Come Sunday" presents guitar virtuoso Joe Pass's reflective touch to the classic Ellington standard. Played unaccompanied, the track also reveals Pass's seminal solo concept. "Secret Love" serves as a buoyant closer to a classic performance in the annals of jazz. Though often overlooked by most jazz listeners, "The Trio" is certainly one Oscar Peterson's best albums, due in no small part to the support of sidemen Pederson and Pass. This album is essential to the record collection of both connoisseur and casual listener alike. Highly recommended. - by Copenlagen, Amazon.com

Artist: Oscar Peterson, Joe Pass, Niels-Henning Oersted Pedersen
Album: The Trio (Live at London House, Chicago)
Year: 1973
Quality: eac-flac, cue, log, artw.
Label: OJC (Remastered, 1998)
Runtime: 37:57

Tracks:
1.  Blues Etude (Oscar Peterson) 5:30
2.  Chicago Blues (Oscar Peterson) 13:42
3.  Easy Listen' Blues (Nadine Robinson) 7:45
4.  Come Sunday (Duke Ellington) 3:45
5.  Secret Love (Sammy Fain/Paul Francis Webster) 7:12

Personnel:
Oscar Peterson - Piano
Joe Pass - Guitar
Niels-Henning Oersted Pedersen - Double Bass

Acoustic Electric Bass Guitar – Guitar Picking Styles – From Chet .

There are actually hundreds of 1000′s and perhaps of acoustic guitar players about the world. It`s the most well-known musical instrument by far, because of it`s portability and the actuality that you can get a basic tune out of it in a span of weeks.

I`m going to speak about `acoustic blues guitar` due to the fact this is my chief concern and I desire to discuss finger picking methods.

Usually, electric guitarists use a pick of some form to pull the strings in and up down motion. Naturally, there are always exceptions, like Mark Knopfler, who utilizes his bare fingers to represent both electrical and acoustic guitars.

His unusual style triggered Chet Atkins to say "I don`t recognize how he`s doing, but he can surely do it! " You don`t get to be the norm - we can give our own rules, but we get to start off somewhere. This starting signal is mostly focussed on prior master players. In the genre of acoustic blues guitar, this signifies individuals such as Robert Johnson, Lightnin` Hopkins, Doc Watson, Reverend Gary Davis and many others.

Naturally there are many variations in style, but pickers can be loosely divided into two categories - those who wear finger picks and individuals that don`t. We`ll disregard how many picking fingers these folks applied for now. I`ve witnessed ragtime blues performers execute competently with up to 3 finger picks on the mighty hand, which didn`t include the thumb! At the early end of the spectrum, some master pickers only use one, either sword or plastic.

Picks for the fingers.

I favor a steel finger pick, as it can be set a little so that it`s tip lines up with the contact point of a naked finger plucking a string. This means there`s no realignment necessary for the weight of attack. Plastic finger picks are usually thicker and start a bit more, so an realignment in picking technique is essential. This is necessary if performing music which call for picks, and about that don`t, for example.

Thumb-pick vs naked thumb.

Normally, the pick gives a sharper, harder sound and amplifies substantially. Some techniques are simpler to get in this way, like `throwing` the thumb onto the string producing a percussive sound. A material advantage is that it saves the finger from getting sore. Naked finger guitarists must practice quite often in society to get a thick callous so that they can play in comfort. In general, picks are easier to get between the strings, so are excellent for plucking single strings in rapid succession.

Naked fingers technique.

A bare thumb can hook behind a string, pull it out from the go card of the guitar and let it snap back, making an accented note which can be good in some styles of blues. In general, bare fingers are very accurate and can give a good bouncy technique if playing ragtime music, either in the way of Scott Joplin-type piano rags or old ragtime blues in the fashion of Blind Blake. The thumb rolls and triplets featured in the latter`s guitar pieces make it quite hard to meet with finger picks.

Some of the later stylists, like Chet Atkins, used strengthened finger nails. I wonder if many older blues guitarists employed this method, but who can say? Rather a few Texas guitarists favored a plastic thumb pick and bare fingers, usually simply employing one digit of the powerful deal with amazing dexterity. Blind Blake appeared to have utilized bare fingers and and some contemporary blues men recollected that he had a trap in his picking hand thumb, exactly where it was drawn out by the bass strings of his guitar.

The mysterious Willie Walker, who only recorded two sides in the 20s, seemed to be a true lord of the ragtime style. His tunes feature lightning fast single train runs which seem difficult if utilizing the riff and index finger alternately striking the strings. It would appear likely that he utilized a plectrum held in between finger and forefinger, utilizing this to alternate the bass line while plucking with one or two fingers.

There are many styles of finger picking and we can get on the exercise of the fantastic guitar masters to help us to give our own approach as we wait for the perfect blues guitar lessons.
Shristy Chandran -
About the Author:

Author is an expert writer on playing blues guitar.

Kim Thompson at the 55 Bar

From a recent hit with Mike Stern at New York's 55 Bar, here's drummer Kim Thompson unleashing on John Coltrane's "Mr. P.C.":



This is post number 500 folks. Thanks for your continued support !

Bim Sherman - It Must Be a Dream

For those who found the concept of Miracle (Bim Sherman's unplugged and Indian-flavored album of 1996) just a little bit too weird, the same songs are presented here in remixes which vary from straightforward reggae treatments ("My Woman," the dubbed-up Youth mix of "Just Can't Stand It") to jungle (the Underwolves mix of "Can I Be Free from Crying"). Tim Simenon gets a bit techno-ish on his reworking of "Missing You," which does a nice job of incorporating the wailing strings of the original in altered form while pushing the whole thing forward with a modified and slowed-down house beat. Skip McDonald, who sang and played guitar on the original sessions, turns "Lovers Leap" into a funky workout that sounds, not surprisingly, an awful lot like a Strange Parcels number. But it's the Steve Osborn mix of "Bewildered" that takes the prize here -- a shamelessly lush, swooning electronic setting of a song that was uncharacteristically sweet and sentimental to begin with. Marvelous. - by Rick Anderson, AMG

Artist: Bim Sherman
Album: It Must Be a Dream (Remixes)
Year: 2003
Quality: eac-flac. cue, log, artw.
Label: EFA
Runtime: 69:04

Tracks:
1.  My Woman (Jarrett Vincent/Bob West) 10:17
2.  Just Can't Stand It (Jarrett Vincent) 4:17
3.  Can I Be Free From Crying (Jarrett Vincent) 7:40
4.  Missing You (Jarrett Vincent) 6:34
5.  Lovers Leap (Jarrett Vincent/Bob West) 5:01
6.  Simple Life (A.Bandez/A. Maxwell/B. Alexander) 5:38
7.  Solid As A Rock (Jarrett Vincent) 9:51
8.  It Must Be A Dream (Jarrett Vincent) 5:52
9.  Bewildered (Teddy Powell & Leonard Withcup) 4:03
10.  Over The Rainbow (Raw Deal/Jarrett Vincent) 4:43
11.  Golden Locks (Jarrett Vincent/Bob West) 5:04

Personnel:
Bim Sherman (Vocals)
Skip McDonald (Acoustic Guitar and Backing Vocals)
Talvin Singh (Tablas and Percussion)
Doug Wimbish (Bass Guitar)
Carlton Ogilvie (Backing Vocals)
Studio Beats Orchestra Bombay (Strings)

The Monday Morning Paradiddle



Well, a few things to report today...

-I've caught a few notable and exciting gigs over the last couple of weekends starting with the Ian MacDougall 12tet at the Cellar in Vancouver two weekends ago. The band was in fine form having had the opportunity to play Ian's music for three nights in a row. Featuring an all star cast including the likes of Brad Turner, PJ Perry, Phil Dwyer, Campbell Ryga, Jodi Proznick, Oliver Gannon and Craig Scott, the entire band sounded great. I really appreciated Ian's distinctive orchestrations and colorful ensemble voicings. There was some serious music in there ! The drum & bass combination of Craig Scott and Jodi Proznick did a fantastic job of supplying a nice, wide solid groove for everyone to play over. The tenor battle between PJ Perry (subbing for Ross Taggart) and Phil Dwyer was intense ! I think a nearby mountain moved after that...

-Back from Vancouver, I caught Toronto saxophonist Jeff King's group Catalyst at the Beatniq in Calgary over the weekend. Featuring King on tenor with Andy Ballantyne on alto, Dave Restivo on piano, Rich Brown on electric bass and Joel Haynes on drums the group played a unique and dynamic program of contemporary, acoustic groove based music with lots of creative twists and turns. Rich Brown's bass playing was a lesson in groove and rhythm. Drummer Joel Haynes navigated his way exceptionally giving the music exactly what it needed. Joel is also a fellow McGill Jazz drumming alumni so it was good to catch up and talk shop with him afterwards.

-My friend drummer Johnathan Blake has recorded a great new album and needs your help to get it out to the public:

Johnathan Blake Indiegogo Campaign from Johnathan Blake on Vimeo.


Click here for more information about how you can help:

http://www.indiegogo.com/Jazz-Drummer-Johnathan-Blake-Debut-CD


-A few albums I've been digging lately:

Larry Young "Unity" - Elvin Jones, Drums

Omer Avital Quintet "Live at Smalls" - Johnathan Blake, Drums

Duke Ellington & Ray Brown "This One's For Blanton"

Billy Hart "Sixty-Eight" - Billy Hart, Drums; Michael Pinto - Vibraphone

Alex Dean, Barry Elmes, Steve Wallace "D.E.W. East" - Barry Elmes, Drums

Stan Getz "At Storyville, Vol.1 & 2" - Tiny Kahn, Drums

Count Basie "Chairman of the Board" - Sonny Payne, Drums

Bill Charlap "Bill Charlap Plays Gershwin" - Kenny Washington, Drums

Joe Lovano & US FIVE "Bird Songs" - Otis Brown III & Francisco Mela, Drums

Shelly Manne "My Fair Lady" - Shelly Manne, Drums

-Last January I toured Western Canada with a great band performing the music from the album "Art Pepper+11". CBC Radio was kind and thoughtful enough to record our performance at the University of Saskatchewan. Here it is: http://www.cbc.ca/radio2/cod/concerts/20110125peppr

-I never get tired of watching this! Gotta love those emerald green drums...



-Like the photo at the top of todays post? I took that with my iPhone during my all too brief trip to Vancouver at the corner of Davie and Bute. A fine tribute to Vancouver's Jazz drumming community, this drummer sort of has a striking resemblance to my fellow jazz drumming blogger Jesse Cahill don't you think?

Latest Zildjian/Gretsch Collaboration *Spoiler Alert*

Some exciting industry news here exclusively from Four on The Floor.

The Zildjian cymbal and Gretsch drum companies have worked together to present their recent collaboration, a special drum set/cymbal combination that will only be available in Northern Canada for a limited time only:



Rumor has it that this kit was actually designed for John Bonham in preparation for a Led Zeppelin tour of Alaska, the Yukon, North West Territories, Baffin Island and Labrador that was cancelled due to poor ticket sales.

Joey DeFrancesco - Live at the 5 Spot

Organist Joey DeFrancesco clearly had a good time during this jam session. His fine quintet (which has strong soloists in altoist Robert Landham, trumpeter Jim Henry, and especially guitarist Paul Bollenback) starts things off with a run-through of "rhythm changes" during "The Eternal One" and the hornless trio cuts loose on a swinging "I'll Remember April," but otherwise all of the other selections feature guests. Tenors Illinois Jacquet, Grover Washington, Jr., Houston Person, and Kirk Whalum all fare well on separate numbers (Jacquet steals the show on "All of Me"), and on the closing blues DeFrancesco interacts with fellow organist Captain Jack McDuff. Few surprises occur overall (the tenors should have all played together), but the music is quite pleasing and easily recommended to DeFrancesco's fans. - by Scott Yanow, AMG

Artist: Joey DeFrancesco
Album: Live at the 5 Spot
Year: 1993
Quality: Easy CDDA flac files, artwork
Label: Columbia
Runtime: 74:52

Tracks:
1.  The Eternal One (Sonny Stitt) 8:01
2.  Embraceable You (George Gershwin/Ira Gershwin) 9:09
3.  I'll Remember April (Don Raye/Gene DePaul/Patricia Johnston) 8:48
4.  Work Song (Nat Adderley) 9:33
5.  Moonlight In Vermont (Karl Suessdorf/John Blackburn) 9:43
6.  Impressions (John Coltrane) 10:29
7.  All Of Me (Gerald Marks/Seymour B. Simons) 8:54
8.  Spectator (Jack McDuff) 10:11

Personnel:
Joey DeFrancesco (Hammond Organ)
Byron Landham (Drums)
Paul Bollenback (Guitar)
Jim Henry (Trumpet, Flugelhorn) - 1,4
Illinois Jacquet (Tenor Saxophone) - 2,7
Robert Landham (Alto Saxophone) - 1
Grover Washington Jr. (Tenor Saxophone) - 4
Houston Person (Tenor Saxophone) - 5
Kirk Whalum (Tenor Saxophone) - 6
Jack McDuff (Hammond Organ) - 8

Ed Blackwell...



Hosted by Branford Marsalis, here's a brilliant documentary on the life of drummer Ed Blackwell produced by NPR. Special thanks to Chad Anderson who sent these my way.




A great quote from Blackwell:

"Neglect your art for one day and it will neglect you for two!"

And from his friend Billy Higgins speaking about Ed:

"He wasn't a drummer by choice, he was a drummer by design."

Indeed...

M'Boom Meets The World Saxophone Quartet



A meeting of musical minds of epic proportions, here's the M'Boom percussion ensemble with the World Saxophone Quartet:







Baden Powell & Vinícius de Moraes - Os Afro Sambas

Os Afro-Sambas was originally recorded in 1966, while this one without Vinicius de Moraes, was done by Baden Powell, Quarteto em cy (as the original), and others nearly quarter century later. Os Afro-Sambas is certainly one of the most important works of contemporary Brazilian Music truly reflecting the transition period from the stylish Bossa Nova of the late 50's to the revolutionary Tropicalia of the late 60's. Eight of the eleven compositions are the same of the original one, while two are also compostions of Baden and Vinicius from the same period and the opening was made by Baden alone specially for this recording.
All tracks reflect religious syncretism, the mixture of West African religions of slavery origin and the European Catholicism, found mostly on Bahia State in form of Ubanda and Candoble religions. The most frequent music theme is love, specially love delusions and solitude. The understanding of singed Brazilian Portuguese would be a must to get into Vinicius poetry in full depth, as there are no lyrics on this set. As one of the most important contemporary Brazilian poets Vinicius de Moraes also has an important role on Brazilian Popular Music with his solo and works with other Brazilian musicians. His work with Baden is an encounter with one of the best Brazilian guitar players, whose strong classical influence is fantastically merged into samba. - by Andre C. Castilla, Amazon.com

Artist: Baden Powell & Vinícius de Moraes
Album: Os Afro Sambas
Year: 1966
Quality: eac-flac, cue, log, artw.
Label: Universal
Runtime: 32:50

Tracks:
1.  Canto De Ossanha 3:28 
2.  Canto De Xango 6:34 
3.  Bocoché 2:38 
4.  Canto De Iemanjá 4:53 
5.  Tempo De Amor 4:33 
6.  Canto De Caboclo Pedra Preta 3:43 
7.  Tristeza e Solidao 4:40 
8.  Lamento De Exu 2:17 
All compositions by Baden Powell & Vinícius de Moraes

Personnel:
Baden Powell (Guitar)
Vinícius de Moraes (Vocals)
Pedro Luis de Assis (Tenor Saxophone)
Aurino Ferreira (Baritone Saxophone)
Nicolino Copia (Flute)
Jorge Marinho (Double Bass)
Reisinho (Drums)
Alfredo Bessa (Percussion)
Nelson Luiz (Percussion)
Gilson de Freitas (Percussion)
Mineirinho (Percussion)
Adyr José Raymundo (Percussion)

Steve Houghton on Cymbals



Drummer and educator Steve Houghton's books and educational resources were very important tools for me when I was a young person, first trying to figure out the drum set. His book "Studio and Big Band Drumming" in particular was a very useful book in learning how to interpret a big band chart.



Steve is now doing great things at the percussion department at Indiana University. Here's a few of Steve doing his thing: