1. #1

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    Hi all,

    I dig David Gilmore (not the Pink Floyd guitarist...) and find his last album, "Energies of Change", really excellent. His use of the rhythm and rhythm patterns seems to me pretty unique in the guitar world, for example yesterday I transcribed the intro of "Awakening" from his last album because I couldn't understand it, it grooves but certainly doesn't fall in the usual categories.

    After transcribing it appears that we are talking about 8 bars with changing rhythmic signatures :

    11/8 - 13/8 - 11/8 - 13/8 -11/8 - 13/8 -11/8 - 13/8

    which is pretty odd !

    This is surely not something that comes to mind by singing in one's head, but rather by trying to apply a concept thought before (in the present case it could be "let's take a beat off a 12/8 bar and add it to the next one"). This reminds me of "Giant Steps" or "Inner Urge", who I believe have been composed in such a way, with different concepts of course.

    So my question for you guys is : do you know other composers (guitarists or not) who uses such rhythm concepts in their composing please ?

    Thank you !


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  3. #2

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    Thanks, I'll have to check out his compositions.

    Just a guess, what do I know: This rhythmic language evolves not from relativity to common time signatures as you say taking a beat off of 12/8 to create 11/8 but is accessed through working with small rhythmic units, mixing and matching combinations of 2 and 3.

    Ex. 11 beats

    3 3 3 2

    3 3 2 3

    3 2 3 3

    2 3 3 3

    2 2 2 2 3

    2 2 2 3 2

    2 2 3 2 2

    2 3 2 2 2

    3 2 2 2 2

    Vamps can be created that articulates any of these variations.

    Hanging out enough with the material long enough is the initiation fee
    we pay to develop a user friendly relationship with any new sound, concept, time feel, etc.

  4. #3

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    On guitar, Miles Okazaki - his albums as a leader are full of unusual rhythmic ideas, golden ratios etc.
    Also, Jonathan Kreisberg, Brad Shepik and Ant Law.

    Odd-time, unusual forms etc - all part of the contemporary jazz landscape. Steve Coleman, Vijay Iyer, Steve Lehman, Dave Holland and Rudresh Mahanthappa are some names that immediately come to mind.
    Last edited by David B; 03-09-2016 at 02:11 PM.

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  5. #4
    Thank you for your replies !

    @David B:
    I checked Okazaki's music some time ago but for some reason didn't really enjoyed it, it's interesting and you know something intricated is going on, but to my ears it was not enough "organic" (sorry, not even clear to me !). As far as I can remember it wasn't the same feeling for Rudresh Mahanthappa's music, but I didn't enjoyed it as well (didn't like his sound on the sax too...), I should give it another try.

    Not sure I ever heard about Ant Law and Steve Lehman, thank you for the hint !

    Yes you are right about the smaller subdivisions. When transcribing, I first checked how the notes were grouped (11/8 is subdivided in 6/8+5/8, then 13/8 is subdivided in 6/8+5/8+2/8, etc.). I think sometimes you don't have to go with the smallest possible subdivisions, for example a 5 note ascending phrase shouldn't have to be 3+2 or 2+3, but could be heard as it is : a 5 note phrase.

    Gilmore may not have thought as I first wrote ("taking off a beat off..."), but looking at the whole picture of this intro (11/8-13/8-11/8-13/8-11/8-13/8-11/8-13/8 = 96 eight notes = 12x8 = 2x24 = 6x36 = etc.), he may have tried to "round it up" anyway

    By the way here's the mentioned composition from Gilmore :

  6. #5

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    Ha! I recognise that arpeggio. It's the arpeggio of contemporary jazz innit?

    1 5 9 3' 7' 4' (through the mode)

    If you don't know that arpeggio, you should! This thing should really have a name. It pops up everywhere. See the Adam Rogers video for instance - also Joe Satriani uses it in Mystical Potato Head Groove Thing, which is where I hear it first.

    Nice tune, actually.

    The 11/8 + 13/8 needless to say adds up to 2 measure of 4/4 triplets. It's quite a fun thing to clap against a steady 4/4 beat.

    Really, when you think about it this rhythm is part of swing time jazz phrasing - just couched differently normally.

    Another way of viewing a push or anticipation on 4+ is that you have cut the measure short by a triplet and superimposing a new 1 on the triplet before the beat. You then return. It's a very cool way to feel it.

    You feel this a lot playing the rhythm of bebop tunes with a hand drum with two hand sticking in 12/8.Try it with Oleo - lots of fun. It's an interesting approach to feel bop lines as combinations of 2 and 3 in 12/8 rather than the usual eight notes in 4/4.
    Last edited by christianm77; 03-10-2016 at 10:15 AM.

  7. #6
    Hello Christian, I tried to access your website but got the following error, seems like you have to fix something...

    "www.christianmillerguitar.com owners have misconfigured their website. To prevent your data from being stolen, Firefox was not connected to this website."

    "If you don't know that arpeggio, you should!" => yeah I've already seen this one indeed
    Didn't completely understand what you meant at the end of the message though, regarding the "hand drum with two hand sticking in 12/8", but I think I got the idea. At the tempo Gilmore's band play, it doesn't seem easy though !

  8. #7

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    That's a strange one.... Thanks for flagging it up

  9. #8

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    Fixed! Wrong protocol I think...