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  1. #1

    Doug Raney's debut album

    Recorded 1977 on the Steeplechase label. Doug was 21 years old! Complete playlist.

    DB

    https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...0MXFjvPo_Mi_Us
    Last edited by DB's Jazz Guitar Blog; 05-15-2019 at 09:46 AM.

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  3. #2
    Yes love that record, amazing at 23. Even more incredible, I always assumed Doug was taught by Jimmy, but in an interview I read that Jimmy left when Doug was a kid, so that wasn’t the case. I think Doug said he learned stuff from records mainly (including his dad’s of course!).

  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop View Post
    Yes love that record, amazing at 23. Even more incredible, I always assumed Doug was taught by Jimmy, but in an interview I read that Jimmy left when Doug was a kid, so that wasn’t the case. I think Doug said he learned stuff from records mainly (including his dad’s of course!).
    He was only 21!

    DB

  5. #4
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    This was the first time I've ever heard Doug Raney play and all I can say is Wow!

    He is so smooth and melodic and what a beautiful tone he gets out of his notes.

    Thank you for posting those sound clips!

    Regards,
    Steven Herron
    Jimmy Raney Tabs - Guitar Solos, Tab Books, Instruction DVDs + Video Lessons

  6. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Herron View Post
    This was the first time I've ever heard Doug Raney play and all I can say is Wow! He is so smooth and melodic and what a beautiful tone he gets out of his notes.
    Thank you for posting those sound clips! Regards,
    Steven Herron
    Jimmy Raney Tabs - Guitar Solos, Tab Books, Instruction DVDs + Video Lessons
    First time you hear Doug? Wow. Check out all his stuff for he is one of the most beautiful players out there. Lyrical and fantastic tone. Unfortutately he passed away in 2016 after a difficult life. A tragedy really. His recorded outpunt is fantastic. I never really understood what went wrong in his life. I have read Jon Raney's Blog entries but exactly how it all went remains a mystery to me.

    DB

  7. #6
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    make sure to check out the trio recordings with chet baker, doug and nhop...some sensational playing

    just posted this to the what are you listening to now thread a few days ago




    & yes doug didn't play with his dad jimmy until he was already older…his early big guitar influence/pal was eddie diehl


    cheers

  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by DB's Jazz Guitar Blog View Post
    First time you hear Doug? Wow. Check out all his stuff for he is one of the most beautiful players out there. Lyrical and fantastic tone. Unfortutately he passed away in 2016 after a difficult life. A tragedy really. His recorded outpunt is fantastic. I never really understood what went wrong in his life. I have read Jon Raney's Blog entries but exactly how it all went remains a mystery to me.

    DB
    It appears the answer might be simple, if you go by what his brother has written. He had a drug abuse problem that got the better of him. Now for me, that begs the question of what drove him to use drugs, and for that I can only speculate. Whatever it was (chemical imbalance, unresolved problems from his youth, depression, etc..), it was more than he had the will to overcome and that makes me very sad for him and his family. Also sadly, there are thousands going through the same thing.

  9. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    It appears the answer might be simple, if you go by what his brother has written. He had a drug abuse problem that got the better of him. Now for me, that begs the question of what drove him to use drugs, and for that I can only speculate. Whatever it was (chemical imbalance, unresolved problems from his youth, depression, etc..), it was more than he had the will to overcome and that makes me very sad for him and his family. Also sadly, there are thousands going through the same thing.
    I just find this post by his brother. I had not looked for it earlier. There was a lot going on in his life:

    Jazz news: Jon Raney on Doug Raney

    Such a waste. The man never made a bad album in his life (he's the only one I daresay this about) and played so beautifully that he should have been a national treasure. Ah well, that's what we always say with hindsight.

    DB

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by DB's Jazz Guitar Blog View Post
    I just find this post by his brother. I had not looked for it earlier. There was a lot going on in his life:

    Jazz news: Jon Raney on Doug Raney

    Such a waste. The man never made a bad album in his life (he's the only one I daresay this about) and played so beautifully that he should have been a national treasure. Ah well, that's what we always say with hindsight.

    DB
    Thanks for getting the answer. I wish Doug could have found joy outside of substance abuse (alcohol and drugs).

  11. #10
    Check out this TV programme featuring Doug talking and playing:

    NRK TV – Jazzguitar

  12. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by DB's Jazz Guitar Blog View Post
    I just find this post by his brother. I had not looked for it earlier. There was a lot going on in his life:

    Jazz news: Jon Raney on Doug Raney

    Such a waste. The man never made a bad album in his life (he's the only one I daresay this about) and played so beautifully that he should have been a national treasure. Ah well, that's what we always say with hindsight.

    DB
    Nice tempo on Giant Steps. They start at about 276bpm, and during the solos it slows down to about 264bpm.
    Just fast enough to still be exciting, but not fast enough to cause them to rattle off the same forced patterns people play on it when they do it at 320bpm like Trane. Great Doug, as usual.

  13. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by neatomic View Post
    make sure to check out the trio recordings with chet baker, doug and nhop...some sensational playing

    just posted this to the what are you listening to now thread a few days ago




    & yes doug didn't play with his dad jimmy until he was already older…his early big guitar influence/pal was eddie diehl


    cheers
    dig it Neatomic,
    I bought all the Baker/Raney recordings when they came out on Steeplechase, great label
    make sure you check out the titles in that catalogue, an absolute treasure trove of great jazz
    -kinda spawned a lot of new cats careers and resuscitated several older ones like Melvin Rhyne's [Wes' orig organist] recordings w/ a young Pete Bernstein on guitar, and Doug's pop Jimmy on several lps.

  14. #13
    Would it be wrong to say that I like Doug's tone a lot more than his father's? I mean, I love Jimmy Raney--but there's more clarity in Doug's playing from the recordings that I've heard.

    He has that guitar ensemble concert that he did in Europe. I am sure that DB knows exactly what I'm talking about. Parts of the concert were featured on a documentary about Doug and his relationship with the guitar.

    I've never heard Doug's stuff this early on in his career--wow!

    I think his last concert is posted on Youtube as well.

    While we're on the topic of the Raney's, have you all heard that album he did with strings? Strings and Swings. I found a copy in LA before I left for Washington--I was over the moon. Jon posted a cut from that record to a video of the family dog eating celery--ever since that clip I needed to hear the whole album. It's a really interesting record, I like it.

  15. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Would it be wrong to say that I like Doug's tone a lot more than his father's? I mean, I love Jimmy Raney--but there's more clarity in Doug's playing from the recordings that I've heard.

    He has that guitar ensemble concert that he did in Europe. I am sure that DB knows exactly what I'm talking about. Parts of the concert were featured on a documentary about Doug and his relationship with the guitar.

    I've never heard Doug's stuff this early on in his career--wow!

    I think his last concert is posted on Youtube as well.

    While we're on the topic of the Raney's, have you all heard that album he did with strings? Strings and Swings. I found a copy in LA before I left for Washington--I was over the moon. Jon posted a cut from that record to a video of the family dog eating celery--ever since that clip I needed to hear the whole album. It's a really interesting record, I like it.
    You're lucky you found the vinyl on S&S by Raney, because Jon said that piece Jimmy composed is so tangled up in the legal rights, that it's never gonna be released on CD.
    Whenever someone says that Jimmy Raney is just an old fashioned bebop player, you can play them that record. It's got stuff on it that's so advanced rhythmically, melodically and harmonically, that the young players of today will never catch up to it. Jimmy studied composition with Hall Overton, and that pretty much says it all right there.
    When I spoke to Jon about it, he said that his father was aware of the modern jazz players of the current day, but let's just say Jimmy wasn't too impressed with them.
    When I saw Jimmy play live, the first thing that struck me was that his playing wasn't dated at all, and that his way was the right way, and that everyone else was wrong, at least as far as jazz guitar was concerned.

  16. #15
    Hal Overton also played piano on a lot of other people's recording dates, correct?

    Yeah, I was really excited to find the record--for 7 smackers! And it's in pretty good condition too!

    When I was in college, I always wanted to do something with a string trio or quartet--and electric guitar.

    Jimmy beat me to the point, decades before.

    When I transcribed some of Jimmy's solos, I was surprised at how he wove angular lines into his bebop language. There's a bit on "Isn't It Romantic?" with Brookmyer where Raney leads into his solo with a b5th--but it's blatantly out--and he just leans on it. That line still stuck with me years later.

    You guys know the solo I'm talking about?

  17. #16
    Jimmy Raney used that b5 sound a lot in unexpected places, I think that’s one of the things that gives his playing an unusual flavour.

  18. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon View Post
    dig it Neatomic,
    I bought all the Baker/Raney recordings when they came out on Steeplechase, great label
    make sure you check out the titles in that catalogue, an absolute treasure trove of great jazz
    -kinda spawned a lot of new cats careers and resuscitated several older ones like Melvin Rhyne's [Wes' orig organist] recordings w/ a young Pete Bernstein on guitar, and Doug's pop Jimmy on several lps.
    Right on. Great label. The live trio recordings with Chet, Doug and NHOP are amazingly beautiful. Doug was 23 at the time. Did you know they were all recorded on one night only but were issued as 3 CDs?

    DB

  19. #18
    Would it be wrong to say that I like Doug's tone a lot more than his father's? I mean, I love Jimmy Raney--but there's more clarity in Doug's playing from the recordings that I've heard.
    Of course not. Though I love Jimmy's tone too, Doug's tone is really from heaven. I like it even better than Jimmy's.

    He has that guitar ensemble concert that he did in Europe. I am sure that DB knows exactly what I'm talking about. Parts of the concert were featured on a documentary about Doug and his relationship with the guitar.
    You probably mean the European Jazz Guitar Orchestra in the early 1990s:


    I think his last concert is posted on Youtube as well.
    Yes. He looks very fragile there but his playng is still great. He is playing an Ibanez and is getting the same tone as always.

    DB

  20. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Would it be wrong to say that I like Doug's tone a lot more than his father's? I mean, I love Jimmy Raney--but there's more clarity in Doug's playing from the recordings that I've heard.

    He has that guitar ensemble concert that he did in Europe. I am sure that DB knows exactly what I'm talking about. Parts of the concert were featured on a documentary about Doug and his relationship with the guitar.

    I've never heard Doug's stuff this early on in his career--wow!

    I think his last concert is posted on Youtube as well.

    While we're on the topic of the Raney's, have you all heard that album he did with strings? Strings and Swings. I found a copy in LA before I left for Washington--I was over the moon. Jon posted a cut from that record to a video of the family dog eating celery--ever since that clip I needed to hear the whole album. It's a really interesting record, I like it.
    I agree with you on Doug Raney's tone. I'm a huge and irrationally enthusiastic fan of Jimmy Raney, but I enjoy Doug's tone more than Jimmy's. As for the actual playing, I love both of them and am so glad I don't have to make up my mind. But whenever Jazzradio.com's jazz guitar channel plays a track with round, beautiful tone and crazy-good bebop lines, I know it's Doug Raney.
    - Lawson
    "Whenever you come near the human race, there's layers and layers of nonsense." - Thornton Wilder, Our Town

  21. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop View Post
    Check out this TV programme featuring Doug talking and playing:

    NRK TV – Jazzguitar
    In which he says his dad, like Wes, started out playing Charlie Christian solos note for note & then laying out...

    +1 for the great sound he gets.

  22. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Hal Overton also played piano on a lot of other people's recording dates, correct?

    Yeah, I was really excited to find the record--for 7 smackers! And it's in pretty good condition too!

    When I was in college, I always wanted to do something with a string trio or quartet--and electric guitar.

    Jimmy beat me to the point, decades before.

    When I transcribed some of Jimmy's solos, I was surprised at how he wove angular lines into his bebop language. There's a bit on "Isn't It Romantic?" with Brookmyer where Raney leads into his solo with a b5th--but it's blatantly out--and he just leans on it. That line still stuck with me years later.

    You guys know the solo I'm talking about?
    Hall Overton (not Hal), was also the guy who did the great arrangements of Monk's music for the "Town Hall Concert" album in the early 60s, that featured Monk playing with a smaller big band. He also had to conduct and run the rehearsals with Monk, which was not an easy task. The rehearsals were done in The Jazz Loft, located in the Flower District of NYC, where Overton lived, and gave people like Raney, Phillip Glass, and many other composition lessons. The building was owned by a famous photographer for Life Magazine, and they used to have jam sessions 24/7 that the owner would tape, because he had the building wired for sound.

    There's a great session with Brookmeyer, Jim Hall and Jimmy Raney that was released on the Jazz Loft record. Jon Raney said they released it without asking for permission.

    If you like jazz guitar with strings, Jim Hall wrote a great piece for guitar and string quartet that is on the Gunther Schuller album "Jazz Abstractions". I think it was re-released on one of hall's later albums.
    Seven bucks for Strings and Swings- what a deal!

  23. #22
    That's where I heard Hall's name, from the Monk "Town Hall Concert"

    No way, he gave Philip Glass lessons too?!?

    I'm not ashamed to say that I am a huge Philip Glass fan, ever since I watched Koyaanisqatsi when I was 8 years old... I dunno why my father showed it to me so young--but I've been hooked ever since.

    Great, my font got screwy again.

    Anyway, I listened to the whole Doug Raney debut album--it's good--really, really good. I've been trying to cop some of his phrases since last night when I bought it.

    From my perspective, young players that were born after the birth of bop & hard bop--a lot of our heroes from that era were in their 20s--those players from more recent decades (70s, 80s, 90s up to present) usually play a lot of notes as fast as possible with no regard for space.

    I remember being in college and everyone was talking Eldar this, Eldar that. The excitement was just over his chops. His playing never moved me.

    Doug Raney, at 21, shows so much maturity here. He has the chops to play a mile a minute, but he shows restraint when it serves the music. And those lines! I'm floored.

    Thanks for the suggestion, DB!
    Last edited by Irez87; 05-16-2019 at 05:37 PM.

  24. #23
    Hall Overton plays piano on some cuts from Jimmy Raney's "A" too, right?

    The connection would make sense there, as Jimmy was experimenting with overdubbing, making some of the heads almost like "two part inventions."
    Jeff Matz, Jazz Guitar:
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  25. #24
    That's a great album, Jeffy B!

    I transcribed the beginning of Jimmy's solo on the tune "Spring is Here" and I can still hear parts of that solo in my head.

    I knew that Hall Overton played piano on some albums.

    See, this is why I got so frustrated with all the Pat Metheny comparisons. I was busy transcribing Wes, Jimmy Raney, Miles, Dex, Cannonball, Howard Alden--and all people could hear was Pat Metheny.

    I got a Shadow Humbucker because of Jimmy Raney (later years).

    Shrudder...

    I blame it on the thick as mud craptastic tone I used to have--my boost pedal cleared a lot of that up. Now I have to get my tone as clear as Doug's over here

    HA! I found the clip I was talking about before:


  26. #25
    Just commenting here because I accidentally hid this thread when I commented on the Talent thread.

    Listening to the Raneys is a heck of a lot more useful to the craft than lamenting on natural talent.

    Do you all think Jon would ever post here?

  27. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Just commenting here because I accidentally hid this thread when I commented on the Talent thread.

    Listening to the Raneys is a heck of a lot more useful to the craft than lamenting on natural talent.

    Do you all think Jon would ever post here?
    Jon's been here before. Whenever someone gets it wrong about Jimmy, he'll be there.

  28. #27
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    Jimmy's tone on "Spring is Here" is among the greatest jazz guitar tone ever recorded IMO. It's very percussive, in a good way.

    I concur that Doug's tone was more consistently good (whether from better recording conditions or who knows what).

  29. #28
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    not to ever sidetrack great doug raney thread!!!..but...

    s- are you talking about the street swingers with brookmeyer, raney and hall? on world pacific?

    if so, here's one hall wrote for raney (they were buds...shared halls gibson GA-50 amp on recording dates!!)...i.e. raney day!!



    they also did an lp for mainstream records...two jims and zoot..with zoot sims!

    & e87- nothing wrong with phillip glass...one of the greatest modern classical composers we have...i used to follow his shows around early on, when he was working with his smaller groups...downtown nyc...chatham square...pre einstein on the beach..he was like a punk band...come in. set up..(he used a yamaha portable organ...the 45)... and go...he drove a cab!..great

    cheers
    Last edited by neatomic; 05-16-2019 at 10:08 PM.

  30. #29
    cool album. Definitely reminds me of Two Jims and a Zoot.

    No, this is the album we're talking about for ol' Jimmy Raney:



    You might be able to enlarge the text here:


  31. #30
    If I had a better record player with usb capabilities I'd record it and upload it to Youtube--with Jon's permission, of course.

    Unfortunately, I have one of those suit case record players and I don't know the first thing about transferring a record to an Mp3.

    If you can find a copy, it's REALLY interesting

    Speaking of Philip Glass, you guys ever see this:



    Pretty wild, right?

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