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Post by ttf_zemry » Mon Dec 29, 2008 7:53 am

Quote from: DaveAshley on Dec 26, 2008, 04:32PMI'll give you a hint: He's the leader.

Check this one out -- solo @ 3:42
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fosnxwLhCuQ

WOW!!! He sure is playing a lotta notes, isn't he?
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Post by ttf_Chris Fidler » Mon Dec 29, 2008 1:32 pm

Quote from: zemry on Dec 29, 2008, 07:53AMWOW!!! He sure is playing a lotta notes, isn't he?

Ooh don't tell Mama....... Image
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Post by ttf_ctingle » Mon Dec 29, 2008 2:06 pm

It's a shame we even have to think about her "taste" on this bonistic educational forum.  Fed is obviously killin to any educated ears.  Is he more on top of the mic than some would choose?  Yes.  Is he saying absolutely what he wants to say in the way he wants to say it on our instrument of choice?  Yes.  Great bebop vocabulary and chops?  Yes.  Great writing, solo and ensemble playing?  Yes.

Viva El Fed!!
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Mon Dec 29, 2008 2:12 pm

Long live fast notes!

Wes Funderburk
www.funderbone.com
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Mon Dec 29, 2008 3:43 pm

Quote from: ctingle on Dec 29, 2008, 02:06PMFed is obviously killin to any educated ears. 
There can be a very thin line between killing and being road kill.  Very few get on the good side of that line, and most shouldn't try.  He sounds great at it, but the margin for error is razor thin there.  99% of other players trying to do that end up completely off time with no coherency to their lines.

Or to put it another way, "Kids, don't try this at home.  Somebody is going to put an eye out."

Remembering Brother Hubbard who passed today, he was very much the same way.  He had full command of his musical line at that speed.  Almost everyone else trying to do that was faking.
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Post by ttf_RedHotMama » Mon Dec 29, 2008 4:02 pm

Quote from: Chris Fidler on Dec 29, 2008, 01:32PMOoh don't tell Mama....... Image

I saw it! And am trying very hard not to comment! I know it wouldn't be welcome.

*mumble mumble*

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Post by ttf_RedHotMama » Tue Dec 30, 2008 6:34 am

(But I do think the lead trumpet player should be taken out the back and shot....)
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Post by ttf_Paul Martin » Tue Dec 30, 2008 6:51 am

Quote from: actikidThere can be a very thin line between killing and being road kill.

Very true, you don't get credit for almost expressing your ideas, or almost having good time...I have to slow down the film enough to even begin to figure out what he's really doing, but it is clearly a lot more than simply double-tonguing the Hell out of everything!
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Post by ttf_Alex Ashbourne » Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:56 am

Quote from: RedHotMama on Dec 30, 2008, 06:34AM(But I do think the lead trumpet player should be taken out the back and shot....)


Agreed, I did not like his playing at all.
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Post by ttf_ctingle » Tue Dec 30, 2008 3:02 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fosnxwLhCuQ

Yeah, Mama, you think these guys are total hacks, right?  I'm....taking....a....breath.

Fast Rhythm changes played by some of NYC's finest.....ok, so you may not like the trumpet soloist (I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt that you know he wasn't playing lead) Image  Do you really want to use this kind of shooting expression about a guy playing Miles and Freddie influenced abstract lines?  I'm wondering if you've even ever listened to Miles or Freddie, though I've heard Barry Reis sound stronger than this particular solo....

I'm catching myself now for even engaging in any kind of musical discussion with you. Have you finished writing your resignation papers for any kind of "moderation" of this forum?  You've got a young kid following you into the abyss (just above) of closed minds and ears.....

SOLOISTS: Mark Vinci - alto, Barry Ries - trumpet, John Fedchock - trombone, John Riley - drums

PERSONNEL:
Saxes: Mark Vinci, Charles Pillow, Rich Perry, Rick Margitza, Scott Robinson
Trumpets: Jon Owens, Frank Greene, Scott Wendholt, Barry Ries
Trombones: John Fedchock, Keith O'Quinn, Clark Gayton, George Flynn
Piano: Allen Farnham
Bass: Todd Coolman
Drums: John Riley

Visit:
www.johnfedchock.com
www.myspace.com/johnfedchock
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Tue Dec 30, 2008 3:28 pm

Quote from: ctingle on Dec 30, 2008, 03:02PMhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fosnxwLhCuQ

Yeah, Mama, you think these guys are total hacks, right?  I'm....taking....a....breath.

Fast Rhythm changes played by some of NYC's finest.....ok, so you may not like the trumpet soloist (I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt that you know he wasn't playing lead) Image  Do you really want to use this kind of shooting expression about a guy playing Miles and Freddie influenced abstract lines?  I'm wondering if you've even ever listened to Miles or Freddie, though I've heard Barry Reis sound stronger than this particular solo....

uh, yep. Those guys are on top of the world right now.

Wes Funderburk
www.funderbone.com
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Post by ttf_RedHotMama » Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:30 pm

Hi there, Chip, old pal. Hacks? Who said that?

I make no adverse comments about John Fedchock. I don't like that style of playing and never will, but am well able to recognise its merit. I can see that he's a master of the genre and of the instrument. Genius, if you will. For what its worth, and if anyone cares, I actually admired his solo, in a mind-boggled sort of way.

However, I thought the solo by that trumpet player, lead or not, top line professional or not, influenced by who-gives-a-rip, was tuneless nonsense. So, shoot me.

And bless you for giving me more powers than I actually have. No-one follows me anywhere!

(And BTW, I'll resign the minute the Director asks me to).


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Post by ttf_Burgerbob » Tue Dec 30, 2008 5:13 pm

Quote from: Alex Ashbourne on Dec 30, 2008, 08:56AM
Agreed, I did not like his playing at all.

 Image Not sure why you don't, he's much better than a lot of others I've heard. I heard one missed partial, and he kinda flubbed the leading stuff to the end... He wasn't overbearing, like some.
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Post by ttf_ctingle » Tue Dec 30, 2008 5:16 pm

Quote from: RedHotMama on Dec 30, 2008, 04:30PMSo, shoot me.
Where's my gun?  Oh, wait...I'm actually anti-gun.

Do you have a recording of you playing fast rhythm changes that you'd like to offer us?

What can I say, ol pal....I'm glad to see you praise players and playing in the cited video, something I don't recall you doing much of, but I'm just tired of the same ol bs you offered about a solo (tpt this time) you didn't like....how about offering the positive comments earlier?  Even before being challenged by ol pals like me?

All of that great playing going on, and a kid feels the need to follow your comment about not liking the trumpet solo?  Whew!!!!

I'm done for now.....was just in the mood to challenge bs at the time.

Cheers,
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Tue Dec 30, 2008 5:18 pm

Uhhhhh,   just for the record,

Christine didn't even say anything.  This is a tough group, trying to get her to resign just because they knew what she must have been thinking.

RHM, evidently you are underestimating your powers.
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Post by ttf_griffinben » Tue Dec 30, 2008 5:21 pm

QuoteHowever, I thought the solo by that trumpet player, lead or not, top line professional or not, influenced by who-gives-a-rip, was tuneless nonsense. So, shoot me.
I won't shoot you, nor would I anyone for their (musical) opinion.  But quite honestly, the stuff Barry Ries was playing was certainly NOT tuneless nonsense.  Despite something that was going on with his chops...I have no idea what, but based on what I have heard from Barry something strange was going on...but the material was the most interesting of the non-percussion soloists to these ears.  It actually was a lot more tuneful and linked together, in addition to more harmonically and melodically adventurous to my ears than either John or Mark.

If this is all you are going to base an opinion of this player on, I heartily suggest you check out more, as he's a world class cat.  He has this language and approach that is very similar, to my ears, to Greg Gisbert and Scott Whendholt (and a lot of people would say that Greg copped the stuff from Barry).  Its a specific sound that fits in the commercial and quick bop world as well as more sonic like paintings (Maria Schneider), accessible with just the right amount of adventurousness mixed in for those settings, so it seems.

Quite honestly, I know some are NOT a devotee of this music, but quite honestly, I don't think a lot of people either know HOW to listen to it, or have the ears trained to recognize what is really going on in it.  But for those that it do have the ears, it's nice stuff.

I'm not saying it as a slam, truly. Because a lot of people don't, and moreover this music doesn't speak to RHM.  Quite honestly, this style of music hasn't done it for me since high school (it's impressive virtuosity, but the soul????).  Barry's solo, while hard to listen to the chop failings, presented a bit of melodic and harmonic interest for this listener.  

I'm just tired of quality goods (idea wise at least) being panned for lack of understanding.

Ben
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Tue Dec 30, 2008 6:29 pm

Here's a great classic rock "You Tube" video with a terrific horn section.

No, it's not Chicago (with James Pankow).
No, it's not Earth, Wind, & Fire (with the late Louis Satterfield).

It's "Vehicle" by the Ides of March.  Remember this tune?  Image

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_EBMo8xHGNs


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Post by ttf_ctingle » Tue Dec 30, 2008 7:18 pm

Quote from: griffinben on Dec 30, 2008, 05:21PM 
I'm just tired of quality goods (idea wise at least) being panned for lack of understanding.

Ben

This is what I wish I would have said on this, and many more occasions on this forum, especially when it comes to those "moderating" a forum important to all of us, especially those really trying to learn about music and the horn.

Thanks Ben.
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:39 pm

Quote from: ButchA on Dec 30, 2008, 06:29PMHere's a great classic rock "You Tube" video with a terrific horn section.

No, it's not Chicago (with James Pankow).
No, it's not Earth, Wind, & Fire (with the late Louis Satterfield).

It's "Vehicle" by the Ides of March.  Remember this tune?  Image

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_EBMo8xHGNs





No it's definitely not EW&F or Chicago, I can't figure out what you thought was terrific about this horn section though, It could be that this was a isolated poor performance, but they were a little out of tune and the horn parts in this song are really simple.

Am I missing something?  Image 

This just doesn't seem anywhere near the caliber of musicianship that I would call terrific.
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Post by ttf_Alex Ashbourne » Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:09 pm

Mama, sorry for starting this argument, I really did not think someone would attack you for your musical preferences.

But anyways, I went back to that video and watched the trumpet solo a few times. It seems like he is off and on, when he is on, he has some cool lines. I still have mixed feelings about this solo.

I am going to look into this guy, Barry Ries, as everyone is sayin good things about him.

Cheers,
Alex Ashbourne
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:23 pm

Quote from: Gordo on Dec 30, 2008, 08:39PM

No it's definitely not EW&F or Chicago, I can't figure out what you thought was terrific about this horn section though, It could be that this was a isolated poor performance, but they were a little out of tune and the horn parts in this song are really simple.

Am I missing something?  Image 

This just doesn't seem anywhere near the caliber of musicianship that I would call terrific.

Ouch...

I just wanted to point out some rock bands with horn sections, and stumbled upon "Vehicle", which I think every high school jazz band has played since the 70's.

I'm not a classical player, I'm not a professional by any means, but I do like to see horn players playing popular rock/jazz/soul/funk music.

No harm intended...
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Wed Dec 31, 2008 5:03 am

Quote from: Gordo on Dec 30, 2008, 08:39PM

No it's definitely not EW&F or Chicago, I can't figure out what you thought was terrific about this horn section though, It could be that this was a isolated poor performance, but they were a little out of tune and the horn parts in this song are really simple.

Am I missing something?  Image 

This just doesn't seem anywhere near the caliber of musicianship that I would call terrific.

...wow.  One day you'll figure it out that it's about the vibe, man.  Wow...

Wes Funderburk
www.funderbone.com

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Post by ttf_boneagain » Wed Dec 31, 2008 5:31 am

Quote from: Wes Funderburk on Dec 31, 2008, 05:03AM...wow.  One day you'll figure it out that it's about the vibe, man.  Wow...

Wes Funderburk
www.funderbone.com


Nicely put, Wes!

Saddens me sometimes that we can forget what the music is about.  Yeah, intonation makes a difference, but it's NOT what the music is about.  I try to imagine that clip BuchA posted WITHOUT those horns and just can't do it.  They must be doing something right.  I'd much rather have "really simple" horn parts that become as much of an icon as these parts in this tune than any number of black page passages that no one hums even the day after.  If we have big enough ears there are places for just about all of this.  Good places.  Recognizing that good without being condescending can lead us to surprising discoveries about ourselves. 
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Post by ttf_sabutin » Wed Dec 31, 2008 5:53 am

Quote from: Alex Ashbourne on Dec 30, 2008, 09:09PMMama, sorry for starting this argument, I really did not think someone would attack you for your musical preferences.

But anyways, I went back to that video and watched the trumpet solo a few times. It seems like he is off and on, when he is on, he has some cool lines. I still have mixed feelings about this solo.

I am going to look into this guy, Barry Ries, as everyone is sayin good things about him.

Cheers,
Alex Ashbourne

Look deeper.

Look into the rhythm section, the inner approaches of the soloists and their physical place in the ensemble, the instruments that they are playing and the sound on stage.

John Riley is one of my all-time favorite big band drummers, but he is reading. He has huge ears, so I'm thinking that possibly the rhythm section may not have had enough rehearsals with the band, at least not on this piece. Todd Coolman (bass) can play, too, but they are not really consistently locking at this tempo. In and out of lock. Too much reading? Unfamiliar with the changes? With each other's playing? Maybe. Bad sound on stage? Almost certainly. So it goes in the world of music. They are pros and they are doing the best that they can under probably less than ideal conditions. The best that they can do, however, continuously impacts the best that the other players can do as well. That's pretty much a one way street.

Now the alto soloist...I don't t really know his playing... plays an instrument on which it is relatively easy  play very fast, and he plays it very well. Plus...he has been listening to the rhythm section balance during the entire performance pretty much the way he is going to hear it when he stands up...he's not moving all that far away from where he has been sitting. And...he is not trying to play way up in the upper structures of the changes. And...he's been playing in the main alto range all night. Result? He's pretty comfortable.

Then here comes Barry Ries. From the back of the sonic bus.

He hasn't heard the sound of the rhythm section in the front of band yet....he's been buried in the back. He has NO idea what it's going to sound like up front or how he will sound to himself. He's been playing low parts on the trumpet, and suddenly he pretty much has to play an octave or more higher than the tessitura in which his chops have been working for likely a quite substantial period of time. So the band plays a long loud, arhythmic fall that buries the rhythm section in his ears for a couple of bars, and then...OK Barry, time to play a fast tempo solo. Look at him at the beginning. He jumps right in and then he hears that the rhythm section is not playing in precisely the same place that he is hearing. UH oh!!! He stops, looks over, waits until things clear up and then begins again. Been there...done that. Now Barry is a serious improvisor. He takes chances; he is always striving to get on over into new territory. So he waits, finds where the rhythm section is playing, and jumps in again. As I said...looking for something new. That's what we do, some of us. It's chancy, but that's what we do. Take it or leave it, but respect the sincere effort. Playing in that way is an existential choice. It's art, and art sometimes fails a little. Can you imagine how hard it is to find something "new" to play on I've Got Rhythm changes in Bb after about 8 generations of serious mother******s have wrung that tune out to dry? But there he is, looking for more. A hero, as far as I am concerned.

So he jumps in, and his chops say "Uhhh...Barry? Fuggedaboudit." And Barry says, essentially "F*ck YOU, chops!!! I'M the boss here and if you can't do what I am hearing, feeling and thinking you are damnned well gonna come along for the ride until you get your act together." And they do come along for the ride, and they do get their act together. He doesn't play canned lick one during the solo. Every note is an attempt to honestly play what he has taught himself to hear for 30 years or more. Then the "background" comes in, blows his chops right out of contention, and he STILL keeps trying, albeit in a register where he probably can't even hear what he is playing because of the noise the horns are making about 8 feet behind him.

So it goes.

You want to be a professional jazz musician who goes for the brass ring every time?.

Take a number.

Then John Fedchock plays.

Now John is a very controlled player. He stays way inside what he knows that he can do, and he can do a great deal. He doesn't try to make the horn dominate a band; he uses the mike. That's a decision all trombone players must face this sort of situation, as opposed to say alto saxophonists and trumpet players who can more or less soar over a big band (as long as their chops hold out in the case of trumpet players) without losing their mobility. Some people took issue with a Gary Valente vid here recently because he has made another set of choices in this department.

You can't please all of the people all of the time...all's you can do is be yourself.

So it goes.

The rhythm section backs off...maybe they have to do so because he is playing so softly and their monitor system sucks so they can't hear him; maybe John asked them to do so...remember, he's the bandleader. Whatever. They settle down, play less and do it less loudly,. and John does his thing. He plays great. He can hear himself...remember what I said about "He's the bandleader?" That's the way it works, folks. It's tight like that. Plus...he's been in front of the band the whole time so the sound of the rhythm section is no surprise to him. He stays well inside of the tonality, doesn't try to blaze much in the way of new trails except physically, and does what he does impeccably. He is impervious to the rhythm section anyway, a totally independent contractor in the time department as can be plainly seen in his stop-time chorus. His tongue IS his rhythm section, and more power to him.

So there it is.

A microcosm of the life of mainstream jazz players.

We do what we can under generally less than ideal circumstances, and people take away from the effort whatever they are capable of taking.

As I said...so it goes.

Could we do better?

Ah well...there's always tomorrow.

But we DO keep trying.

You should try to respect the effort.

It isn't done for money or fame, that's for sure.

It is done for love.

Bet on it.

Later...

S.
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Post by ttf_Chris Fidler » Wed Dec 31, 2008 6:17 am

Sam...... Great......You nail it here Image



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Post by ttf_sabutin » Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:05 am

Quote from: Chris Fidler on Dec 31, 2008, 06:17AMSam...... Great......You nail it here Image
Been nailed by it so many times...it's a slam dunk.

Later...

S.
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Post by ttf_griffinben » Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:50 am

I'll throw out another "Harumph" Sam's way.  I dig it.   I think anyone that has put in some serious time doing this kind of thing has been out there like that, so often that I wasn't even thinking about explaining it.

Ben
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Post by ttf_ctingle » Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:48 am

Sam, I'm hopping on the bandwagon of gratitude for yet another insightful post - what kind of coffee did you drink this morning?  Or was it a meditation?  A new mouthpiece?

Grooviest of NYZ to you and all bonistas on this site looking, searching, finding, exchanging, discussing, respecting, sharing.....

Peace,
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Post by ttf_ntap » Wed Dec 31, 2008 1:41 pm

Amen to Sam's wisdom. Shows a deepness of listening that I, personally, don't take into account enough. 

Here's some more:

Interview with Slide Hampton from WXXI recorded in June of 2008.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VkcQUftcPeg

Here's part 2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UIy0LaWC ... re=related

Good stuff at 2:30 on part 2.
edit:  Good stuff everywhere. Damn... Check those videos out...

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Post by ttf_anonymous » Wed Dec 31, 2008 2:07 pm

If we are talking about the Flintstones video, the only solo that had any musical merit at all, IMHO, was Fedchock's.  At that tempo, I can't say if what he was playing was brilliant or nonsense, but I THINK it was actually a well-conceived, well played musical line, and I'm pretty sure he was on top of the beat throughout.  I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt in what I am able to hear, which makes it quite an amazing and rare performance.

The other two were playing gibberish and not particularly well.  They shouldn't try music at that tempo.  It doesn't work for them.  But then, I don't suppose the tempo was put up for a vote, so you do what you have to do.  I'm sure they are fine players at 250 or 280, but at 320 they sound pretty much like me, which is not a high compliment.  It seems that Fedchock counted the tune off at the tempo he was able to play, which is one of the prerogatives of the bandleader.

Maybe the tune wouldn't have had the energy he wanted if he had counted it off 10% slower.  It is an artistic choice.  And I will give the trumpet and sax players credit for having their train wrecks in tempo.  Lesser players would have had train wrecks AND dragged the band down at the same time.  Pretty amazing intensity by the rhythm section.
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Post by ttf_griffinben » Wed Dec 31, 2008 5:26 pm

Actikid, everyone is entitled to their opinion, but I disagree with a lot of what you said.  Especially about the "gibberish nonsense".  From Mark Vinci and Barry Ries.  Not to mention a tasty solo by John Riley; man that guy understands the drum set as a musical instrument.  I agree that Fedchock played good lines, but I've heard a lot of them from him before, and while I respect the skill involved, it was way less exciting for me conceptually than Barry's journey.  Vinci played nicely, but I think he's a few cuts above what he displayed, but he certainly wasn't playing nonsense.

All those guys could handle the tempo.  Geez, while Barry's chops are failing him, his time is great, more impressive when you consider some of the intervallic choices he's making, plus check out how much third valve is going on...that destroys the time of so many trumpet players I know.  The band wasn't locked in as a whole,  not as well as it usually is (check out John's first New York Big Band album).  In addition to everything else Sam mentioned, I think the band was tired.  Physically and mentally.  I've heard this band a couple times in person, and this chart is usually the closer.  I bet they played two hard sets before this.

I just don't hear what your hearing, or agree with it, at all. 

But then we're all entitled to our opinions.

Ben
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Post by ttf_The Bone Ranger » Wed Dec 31, 2008 5:58 pm

Terrific insight, Sam. Thank you for sharing.

Andrew
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Post by ttf_Hank Lambert » Wed Dec 31, 2008 8:31 pm

If you ever heard Apple Honey, or Caledonia played by Woody's band---you would know what Fedchock was shooting for with the Flintstoned chart. A straight-ahead tempoditearass barn burner that builds to the end. I thought the alto player kicked ass, a cross betwenn Art Pepper's fire with Lee Konitz' lines. Not too far out, but some nice be-bop stuff. The trumpet player seemed frustrated. Don't know him personally, but have heard him previously--- a bad night---soft machine wasn't working as Sam would say. His body language at the end of his solo speaks for itself. I, personally thought he had some nice ideas on the bridge, but his chops weren't cooperating. Fedchock was OK. IMHO not one of his better efforts---he was on "doodle-pilot"--not alot of substance but hellacious technique...much more than I'll ever have. Typically Fedchock knocks me out.
We are so used to these "clinical" cuts that are laid down a few licks at a time, and sound seamless. Clam Free. That doesn't happen much in the real world. If you listen to Diz, Clark, Maynard, Doc or whomever live.... they go balls to the wall all the time and make it prolly 80 percent of the time....and that's when they're not playin the 4th Tpt book for all of the gig....give em a break.
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Wed Dec 31, 2008 8:33 pm

Quote from: griffinben on Dec 31, 2008, 05:26PMAll those guys could handle the tempo.  Geez, while Barry's chops are failing him, his time is great, more impressive when you consider some of the intervallic choices he's making, plus check out how much third valve is going on...that destroys the time of so many trumpet players I know. 
I agree with that to a degree.  The sax player was just doing muscle memory licks and trills -- nothing of any musical interest to my ears.  Repititious.  Monotonous.  Calling it a train wreck is too strong a word.  It just wasn't anything of interest or anything creative.  I agree the trumpeter was at least trying to play some inventive musical lines, and on another day, maybe he could have pulled it off spectacularly.  But to my ears, it just isn't worth it.  Even when guys are actually able to do something musically at that tempo, as it seemed that Fedchock did, you really can't discern much of what is happening because everything runs together at that speed.  A big part of jazz, IMHO, is the INFLECTIONS that the player is able to give notes, and you get none of that at that tempo.

There is an alternative, of course. It isn't necessary to play an endless stream of 8th notes at 320.  It is still legal in most states to come up for air, to insert pauses, to play some quarters and half notes, to lend some rhythmic interest to the solo.  That clearly falls within the realm of personal opinion.  I am happily in the minority on that.  Clearly most players think that this music is to be played as an uninterrupted stream of the double time notes.

This sort of thing is probably a lot more satisfying live than on recording, because the live performance would have a lot of energy, which can offset some of the less satisfying musical elements.
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Post by ttf_ctingle » Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:41 pm

Quote from: griffinben on Dec 31, 2008, 05:26PMIn addition to everything else Sam mentioned, I think the band was tired.  Physically and mentally.  I've heard this band a couple times in person, and this chart is usually the closer.  I bet they played two hard sets before this.

I just don't hear what your hearing, or agree with it, at all. 

But then we're all entitled to our opinions.

Ben

More insightful comments I agree with and applaud!

I would even venture a guess that this recording/concert took place on a day that started with an early morning flight from greater NYC to greater Chicago (New Trier HS), then the typical ground transpo, hotel, and to the clinic/sound check/concert.  Two sets later, you're playing R changes at a blistering tempo, and expected to sound your best both in the ensemble and soloing. 

You get what you get...what is it Sam?  You pays your money and you takes your chances?

Cheers all,
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Post by ttf_sabutin » Thu Jan 01, 2009 12:23 am

Alla you people who are signifying on Barry and Mark?

I'm going to quote the oft-used response that the great bass player Rufus Reid (who pretty much founded the fine jazz program at Paterson College) would give when students put down some pro or another.

"You go out and do it better, and then come back and we'll talk."

Quote from: actikidThe sax player was just doing muscle memory licks and trills -- nothing of any musical interest to my ears.  Repititious.  Monotonous.  Calling it a train wreck is too strong a word.  It just wasn't anything of interest or anything creative.
Send me something where you play better than that.

(This is a fairly safe challenge, because anybody who really could play at or above that level would never, ever put someone down for honest...let alone fairly advanced and successful...effort. Well...only a few great players as far as I know, and they were pr*cks.)

Quote from: actikidIf we are talking about the Flintstones video, the only solo that had any musical merit at all, IMHO, was Fedchock's.  At that tempo, I can't say if what he was playing was brilliant or nonsense, but I THINK it was actually a well-conceived, well played musical line
Well if you don't know what was happening,...really know...then how can you dare to make a judgement call of this type?


Quote from: actikidThe other two were playing gibberish and not particularly well.  They shouldn't try music at that tempo.  It doesn't work for them.
The only "gibberish" I am hearing here is coming from you.

Like I said...for a real artist, this is an existential decision. We are here, in a vast and unexplainable universe. May as well try everything. How are we to know what we can and cannot do if we do not try to do it? How are we to learn how to do something if we do not try it? As Carmine Caruso said about extreme ranges "You can't learn how to  play a note if you don't play it at all."

I have a life rule about this sort of thing, and here it is. Consider it well. It has done good things for me going on 40 years now.

Never say "No" unless you are absolutely, positively sure that you will fail miserably at the task, and that such failure will hurt your position in the world to some appreciable degree.

Two cases in point:

#1-Many years ago Lee Konitz called me up and asked me to play bass trombone in his nonet. I didn't even own a bass trombone, but the first rehearsal was three weeks away. I said yes, and basically learned on the gig. I didn't play all that well in some respects for a while, but it wasn't so bad that people asked for their money back and I grew into it. What I learned musically on that band...a band that included Lee, Tom Harrell, Billy Hart, Jim Knepper, John Eckert, and Ronnie Cuber just to name a few of the heavies who were in it...has nourished me from that day to this one. Bet on it. Had I copped out..."Awww...I'll never be able to get that sh*t together in time..." my whole life would have been different.

#2-A week ago a great bass trombonist called me in a panic and asked if I could sub for him the next day on a really good big band that has some quite challenging bass trombone parts. I haven't touched my bass trombone in about 3 months and in fact I have been working very hard on developing my altissimo range on small tenor during that time. I said no, because I know damned well that it would take me a few days to get in shape enough to even do an adequate job and that band and further I know that the bandleader would be bugged both at me and at the guy who sent me in if I stepped all over myself.

The same idea holds for solos at tempo. Unless I simply have no shot...like on tuba when my finger chops are down...I take the solo and see what develops. If it doesn't work out, the real players will understand what was up, and they're the ones that mean something to me. The others? The one who cop an attitude? I've watched those players come and go in waves over the years. The real players sustain.

Which do you want to be, actikid?

Really.

You say "I'm sure they are fine players at 250 or 280, but at 320 they sound pretty much like me, which is not a high compliment."

Well...what are you doing to get up there?

Shedding in private?

Ain't gonna work.

You have to put your mortal ass on the line.

Day in and day out.

Bet on it.

You say :

QuoteThere is an alternative, of course. It isn't necessary to play an endless stream of 8th notes at 320.  It is still legal in most states to come up for air, to insert pauses, to play some quarters and half notes, to lend some rhythmic interest to the solo.  That clearly falls within the realm of personal opinion.  I am happily in the minority on that.  Clearly most players think that this music is to be played as an uninterrupted stream of the double time notes.
The salient phrase here?

"Clearly most players think that this music is to be played as an uninterrupted stream of the double time notes."

Well, do you think that "most players"...meaning most professional jazz musicians...are ignorant, untalented a**holes? Or is there perhaps a REASON why they are playing that way?

There are a number of reasons, and they are not all due to ego problems. Here are a couple.

1-When a rhythm section is less than absolutely perfect, YOU have to establish the tempo with every phrase when playing a high speeds because they...and/or t=you as well... might get discombobulated, lose the harmonic flow and there you jolly well are, aren't you, trying to find the form of the tune. In ideal circumstances...a band like say the Miles groups with Ron Carter and Tony Wlliams and them...a mutual trust and understanding has (often quite painfully)  been set up through literally hundreds of hours of gigs, and then when someone lays in some space no one else panics or gets uptight and defensive.

Otherwise...you're playing with fire.

Been there, been burned.

More than a few times.

2-There is a tempo going on. Eventually you are going to have to make that tempo, or why play it in the first place? Imagine an idiomatic style of some sort...a Sousa-style march for example...where the composer wrote all of the parts in good, strict march style but wrote one section...say the trumpets... in some sort of halftime against what was going on for most or all of the piece. It might be an interesting artistic effect, but it would no longer function as a march. This piece is not Charles Ives-like exploration in deconstructing an idiom. It's a Woody Herman-style uptempo barnburner. tTy to float over it like a butterfly and you are most likely going to be squashed like a bug on a truck windshield. Plus when you are not having trouble making it...and neither Mark nor John are having much trouble...why quit? It feels good to flow like that.

So when you're not? And you have been able to do so in the past? The natural tendency is to try to get there. And once you have tried to get there and find conclusively that you cannot, you are already halfway through the tune, and once again...there you jolly well  aren't you. Once again. Whatchoo gonna do? Quit and walk dejectedly back to the section? Admit defeat after you have made a valiant attempt and start over again in another style? No "art" there. Just surrender. So you keep trying, take your medicine and learn something. Maybe next time you will come out a little more crafty instead of jumping in, guns a'blazing. But that's no reason to be dissed. Not if you made an honest attempt to grow. Not from real players you won't be dissed, because THEY have been there and gotten burned, too.

Just sayin'...

It ain't easy, this stuff. It ain't simple and it ain't written in black and white either.

If it was...why everybody would be able to do it.

Just sayin'...

Later...

AG


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Post by ttf_RedHotMama » Thu Jan 01, 2009 3:00 am

I used to have a boss who, on a day when absolutely everything was going wrong, always said "It would be boring if it was too easy". I nearly killed him on a number of occasions. However, even if it's your "thing" to play an enormous number of random high notes in rapid succession with no pause for breath, if you're knackered, or your chops are shot, or you get out front and find that something isn't right with the back line, then why not change, just slightly, what you'd planned to do in order to make it sound better? Play a bit lower, leave a few gaps, take a breather, get back in with the rhythm section, try to collect yourself and not make a train wreck out of it? Isn't that what a sensitive and quick-thinking player - pro or amateur - SHOULD do? Well, it's what THIS lowly grunting amateur tries to do anyway.
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Post by ttf_blast » Thu Jan 01, 2009 5:08 am

I read all the comments before listening to that clip.... wow, I was amazed at the amount of picking that goes on. Sam gives a great insight into the minute detail of that few moments in time... but hey, folks... that's what it was... a few moments in time... a live concert... a thing between players and audience.
It seems to me that pretty well everything you play as a professional musician these days gets recorded... still mostly in a professional way... but more and more by sneak video recorders and then posted on youtube (I know the clip in question was a pro recording)to be torn apart by the wolves.... just a few weeks ago I witnessed the surprise of members of the BBC Symphony when they found clips of a rehearsal posted on youtube by a sneak recordist.... what is that about ??? I am glad some of my best musical memories were NOT recorded.... they were often about the time, the place and the unique atmosphere of a musical moment...
unrecordable.

Chris Stearn
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Post by ttf_RedHotMama » Thu Jan 01, 2009 5:54 am

I wish my best musical moments HAD been recorded. What people usually record is oneself making a complete prat of oneself. Image
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Post by ttf_boneagain » Thu Jan 01, 2009 6:17 am

And Chris brings us to what I consider one of the most important points. In all the nitpicking about this LIVE performance are we helping put at risk TWO things that make a real difference to most of us on here?  By most I mean NOT Sam and NOT Chris and NOT the guys who can still find enough gigs to make a living playing.

Those of us who make do with day jobs, let us ask ourselves a couple questions:
1) What message do we send to the sponsors of LIVE events when we are this negative about the results?  
2) In what direction do we motivate these players by blowing crap about THEIR hard work?

If WE owned the venues, or even just had the dollars to sign for, would we sign up artists this thoroughly panned by folks who supposedly knew something about the millieu?

If WE were the ones getting burned by the Youtube posts do you think we would be a bit more stringent in contracts about NO RECORDING EQUIPMENT IN THE HALL!  

But let's not think about such things. Let's go ahead and see if we can contribute to the demise of live performance, and to players who will take risks at live performances, and to opportunities to see more concerts than ANY of us have time or money to travel to.  

Sorry RHM, but I think comments like "ought to be shot" are the succint starting point for discussions that don't to any of us any good.  I really admire comments you've made elsewhere to the effect of, "Not my cup of tea, but I have to admire ...."  

What gets to me here is that NONE of the comments are uninformed or poorly argued.  If they were we could just dismiss them with "
consider the source."  These comments are posted by folks who are fully equipped to find more positive approaches to voicing opinions.  These are opinion I and other players should be respecting.  So what is the intent with these expressions?  I really can't begin to guess.  My intent on this forum has two pieces: 1st, post nothing that will harm another player; 2nd, try to post in ways that will reinforce improvements in the realm of Trombonia.  That doesn't mean I ignore things that I think are worthy of negative criticism.  It means I do my best to make criticism non-destructive at the very least, and constructive wherever possible.  

Thought exercise: how many of the posters above would have been willing to stand up on that stage with those players and make those comments, then back them up with something?  Last I looked, this thread had around 50,000 views.  Certainly, they were not all on the Fedchock entries.  But over time more people will likely see this thread than attended the concert.  We ARE on stage, commenting about those players.

"...people get the government they deserve..." Care to substitute the "Live Performance" and "Internet accessbile replays" for "government?
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Post by ttf_Rob Dorsey » Thu Jan 01, 2009 7:31 am

Here, here!
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Thu Jan 01, 2009 7:40 am

Quote from: sabutin on Jan 01, 2009, 12:23AMYou say "I'm sure they are fine players at 250 or 280, but at 320 they sound pretty much like me, which is not a high compliment."

Well...what are you doing to get up there?

Shedding in private?

Ain't gonna work.

You have to put your mortal ass on the line.

Day in and day out.
But that's the point.  I have no desire to play at that speed.  Even when it does work, which is extraordinarily rare, the audience doesn't really know what they have heard, other than a flurry of notes.  To my tastes, it is musical masturbation when it gets to that extreme.  I am much more interested in the development of musical lines with some real meat, and I accept that I will never be able to accomplish that with 8th notes at 320.  I'm OK with that.  And I'm also OK with the fact that some people will always prefer to hear that firestorm of fast notes at the expense of a more developed musical line.  

Tastes differ.  I have no problem with that.  I do have a problem with a measurement scale that implies faster is better.  No, faster is faster.  It isn't necessarily better.

Where is the line between awesome musical excitement and musical masturbation?  Hard to say exactly where it is.  I'm sure it is different for each listener.
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Thu Jan 01, 2009 10:30 am

i think it is ironic that some of the least moderate comments on this forum come from a moderator.   all of the members of this forum that take on the posture of experts are revealing themselves to be anything but.  it is completely ridiculous to me to read anything here that critiques the performance of a PROFESSIONAL musician.  tell us what you like and leave the rest alone.  you could even try and tell us what you would like to hear.  but, to criticize the performance of anyone who has demonstrated that they can make a living in the most competitive of professional environments while traveling the world playing music at the highest level CONSISTENTLY night after night is the biggest problem i find with this forum. 

i am a professional and i would be hard pressed to find a situation wherein i might CONDESCEND to another professional. 

for the youngsters here, respect words.  words are all we have with which to communicate....especially here.  you may use an emoticon for context, but we all read the words BEFORE we get to the icon.  emoticons are kind of like an apology for laziness with one's text.  whatever you write may be misunderstood, so take the time to understand.  use the preview button and read through your post.  decide whether or not your thoughts are clear and respectful.  ask yourself if you have considered all points of view and whether your comments are based on a breadth of experience, or whether they are the intellectual property of someone else that you've adopted as your own. ask yourself what you get out of defending your opinion versus trying to understand the position of another. 

it's very easy to write a few words and hit send.  it's difficult to COMMUNICATE.  i assume everyone on this forum is dedicated to excellence on their instruments and in other facets of their lives.  why drop the ball here? 

respect your words.  respect others.  use your words to create and not to destroy.  if you don't have anything positive to add to a discussion, let someone else do it. 

let's make this our new year's resolution, please.  i used to enjoy this place, but too many here enjoy wielding their opinions as weapons to pierce the opinions of others.  what's in it for them?  certainly there is no growth or expanse of perspective.  if we aren't here to learn, then what are we doing? 

please, consider what i have written.  please.  please.  please. 

dg
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Post by ttf_anonymous » Thu Jan 01, 2009 10:39 am

Thank you, Dave.  It's one thing to be critical of a "pro" from your office or cubicle with a picture of your family and trombone on the wall but it's another thing when you're out there competing with higher, faster, louder...  I do it every day.  There's always someone else out there who is ready to eat your lunch.  If I gotta play faster than that guy you better believe I'm gonna do it. 

Also musical masturbation feels good.  Does that count? ...mmmm....

Take Dave's words to heart... 

word.

Where are all the links to other YouTube trombone players, by the way?

Wes Funderburk
www.funderbone.com

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Post by ttf_sabutin » Thu Jan 01, 2009 10:43 am

Quote from: actikid on Jan 01, 2009, 07:40AMBut that's the point.  I have no desire to play at that speed.  Even when it does work, which is extraordinarily rare, the audience doesn't really know what they have heard, other than a flurry of notes.  To my tastes, it is musical masturbation when it gets to that extreme.  I am much more interested in the development of musical lines with some real meat, and I accept that I will never be able to accomplish that with 8th notes at 320.  I'm OK with that.  And I'm also OK with the fact that some people will always prefer to hear that firestorm of fast notes at the expense of a more developed musical line.  

Tastes differ.  I have no problem with that.  I do have a problem with a measurement scale that implies faster is better.  No, faster is faster.  It isn't necessarily better.

Where is the line between awesome musical excitement and musical masturbation?  Hard to say exactly where it is.  I'm sure it is different for each listener.

It's not about "faster is better". It's about making a real attempt to grow, regardless of the immediate consequences or results. And on some mysterious, cosmic level, about 8 or 10 generations of musicians have established that it only works when it is done in public, in front of a live audience. That's where the stuff grows. In a studio? Only after it has been grown in a live culture of some sort. And even that only happens rarely.

To expand upon what Chris says above, this is just an incomplete snapsot of a brief moment in time. I know for a fact that Barry Ries has played other solos of a less speedy nature. Been there, heard him. A number of times. I have also heard him make tempi like this. And maybe not make them a little, too.

Here is what fast tempi do on the highest level of jazz improvisation, actikid. They literally force the musician to get past his mind and into broader planes of hearing, broader planes that he has taught himself to hear. These areas are no more "natural" to a musician than is understanding atomic structure natural to a mathematician/physicist, but when the Einsteins of this world (And you can bet on the fact that all truly dedicated jazz players aim for an equivalent Einsteinian level of musicianship because there is not enough line-level reward in the continued activity to make it a worthwhile endeavour without that kind of aim.)...when the Einsteins of this world do manage to put it all together and let it boil away on a deeper level, why...there you have it. A breakthrough in how we see the world, in how we deal with the world; nothing less than a breakthrough in the human condition.

So we...no matter how close to "Einsteinian" we may have yet approached... we walk out there, try to empty our mind of all preconceptions and just play whatever it is that we are hearing in those moments of time. Say the words "A minor seventh" to yourself at that tempo and the actual chord is already two bars gone. You just have to get reactive and do your thing. Now Barry's "reactivity" has progressed to a whole 'nother plane of harmonic content. He is trying to play three-dimensional chess out there while the other soloists are playing checkers and Texas Hold 'Em poker. (Again...no putdown intended. It's all an existential choice, and everybody travels their own path. Sometimes the safer path is the better one in the long run. Discretion is indeed sometimes the better part of valor. Been there, too.) The scales that he is hearing/trying to play are built off of way high functions of the basic chords, plus he is using chromatic connectors within those scales. Again...I haven't analyzed exactly what he was doing (There's a jazz players' slightly bitter joke that goes like this-"Nice solo. I can hear what you were trying do do." Been there. With myself. Image Image Image) but to illustrate the concept with a harmonic approach that I sometimes use, if there is an A-7->D7  change in the basic chords of that bridge, he is not saying or thinking "OK, I'll play an E-7 aeolian scale on the A-7 with a chromatic G# + C# in it, then play an E7 scale over the D7 chord using a b13th and adding a raised 7th. And I'll start on an A and go up" because there simply is not enough time to say or think that or any equivalent constructs. He is just...trying to play what he has taught himself to hear with maybe a little shorthand conceptual hit as he approaches the bridge.

"Um...like that" and then off you go into the newest of new/old worlds.

When it works...it's Einsteinian. Please witness the works of Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie and John Coltrane for all that you need to know about that.

Image

(I love that picture!!! That's Bird and Diz, with a very young Coltrane and the fine bassist Tommy Potter at Birdland in the '50s. The baraka on that bandstand must have been thunderous!!!)

When it doesn't work?

One of a thousand failed experiments/calculations and so it goes.

Back to the drawing board as the universal punchline has it.

You don't want to live that life?

Take those risks?

OK by me. It's a rough road in many respects.

Do you have some appreciation for those that went out there and DID take those risks?

Bird? Diz? 'Trane? Pops? Teagarden? Pres? Bechet? Getz? Sonny? Mulligan? Bix? Bean? J. J.? Brookmeyer? Clifford? Tito Puente? Ben Webster? Mingus? Duke? Bill Evans? Lee Konitz? Thad Jones? Gil Evans? Chico O'Farrill? And hundreds (thousands?) more.

Then don't signify on somebody who is out there trying.

And if you do not appreciate the efforts of people like those that I mention above...then just kindly stay out of the goddamned conversation.

Thank you and a Happy New Year to all.

Even the squares.

Later...

S.


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Post by ttf_Bob Riddle » Thu Jan 01, 2009 12:25 pm

Great viewpoints from Sabutin and DG.These are comments that should be taken to heart as they get right to the crux of what it is like to be a Professional musician.In far too many cases things are far from ideal situations where one is called upon to make something out of nothing or at least out of very little.To sound phenomenal,great, or even good in these situations takes most years of hard work.And I'm not even talking about going steps further and trying to be innovative,stretch into new territory while doing this.Put yourself in those situations day-in,day-out,lots of times performing with people you may not even know,sometimes w/ far less than adequate rhythm sections,no way to hear yourself even remotely adequately.VERY difficult to sound your best,or even to sound like yourself.It takes a pro w/ a very highly developed sense of their own sound/style to accomplish this even if it's only to the degree of just trying to sound good,let alone sticking your j***y out there,for someone just waiting to step on it.
VHY
Bob
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Post by ttf_ctingle » Thu Jan 01, 2009 1:58 pm

Whew.....just making it back here after a good NYZ sleep.

That's some really profound thought that has been put down in cyber form for us to consider!

I want to publicly thank Sam, Dave Gibson, Ben, and many others for the kind of discussion and sharing that makes this place special when it's at its best.  This level of exchange is what used to have me checking in regularly, but I think I've been staying away more often lately because of another level of thought and exchange that turns my stomach and just leaves me pissed off.

I know much more coffee is needed for me to make much sense here, but hopefully you can see through my fog to know what I'm trying to say.

Once I'm more awake, I have to write about a show I caught in LA just before Christmas with Ed Neumeister's Jazz Orchestra @ The Jazz Bakery - speaking of profound thought!!!  Go Ed!!!!!!

Go groove all,
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Post by ttf_DaveAshley » Thu Jan 01, 2009 2:41 pm

Wow -- I'm a controversial poster.  I posted the Gary Valente video and this Fedchock video.

I'm "sorry"....

 Image
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Post by ttf_BGuttman » Thu Jan 01, 2009 3:14 pm

Quote from: DaveAshley on Jan 01, 2009, 02:41PMWow -- I'm a controversial poster.  I posted the Gary Valente video and this Fedchock video.

I'm "sorry"....

 Image

Quite an interesting discussion.

I don't particularly care for this type of music (I assume I have that right) so I chose to lay low.  Fact is, a bad performance is a bad performance.  We all have them; even the "Gods".  I choose not to discuss "stream of notes" solos because they don't "speak" to me.  I found Sam's discussion of the clip to be very interesting.

As musicians we are constantly trying to put forth our best performances all the time.  Sometimes for good and sometimes not.  Sadly, we can't control what gets out to the public.  Example: Sam's solo on the ITA CD.  It wasn't his best effort (he even says so) but I would hesitate to call it "bad".  I certainly couldn't do better.

Those of you who excoriated RHM for not liking the trumpet solo should be forced to listen to 40 hours of Palestrina.  See how happy you get when you have to listen to stuff that doesn't interest you.

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Post by ttf_ctingle » Thu Jan 01, 2009 6:15 pm

Quote from: BGuttman on Jan 01, 2009, 03:14PMThose of you who excoriated RHM for not liking the trumpet solo should be forced to listen to 40 hours of Palestrina.  See how happy you get when you have to listen to stuff that doesn't interest you.
Comparing listening to 40 hours of (insert music type of choice) with a few minutes of YouTube video featuring some of NYC's best players......you realize you're missing the point, right?

I think you're also failing to acknowledge that RHM's consistent MO over the years (YEARS!!), has been to severely disrespect music or players she doesn't like ("should be taken out and shot") without making much or any mention at all of what she actually does like or respect within the same subject of discussion. 

IMHO she fails to be "moderate" at all, let alone actually facilitating positive, constructive dialog, and she simply lacks the breadth of musical knowledge and tastes to perform any kind of musical "moderator" service for this forum if it is to be the best it can be.

I'm only one guy with one opinion, but when RHM continues to affect dialog after dialog in similar ways for such a long time, I simply feel something has to be said and done about it.  Am I the only one who feels this way?  Am I overreacting?  I'm trying to be open and honest here, so I'd appreciate your honest reactions.  I can take it.

All the Best,
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