View Poll Results: How many Charlie Parker tunes do you know?

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75. You may not vote on this poll
  • I don't know any

    16 21.33%
  • A couple

    32 42.67%
  • A half dozen or so

    17 22.67%
  • At least a dozen, probably a few more

    6 8.00%
  • Twenty, easy, probably more

    4 5.33%
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  1. #201

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    Quote Originally Posted by Broyale
    I worked on a couple, last one was Scrapple from the Apple, but like alot of his music, I quickly forgot it.
    Charlie Parker was an interesting person, but his music is a major turn-off for me and his solos are unlistenable. Its like 200 bpm note-vomit.

    Wow!!! Shocking statement!!! Everyone has their personal likes and dislikes about music....but on a Jazz Guitar Forum to say this about CP ??? I'm still stunned in shock....wait....is it April 1st today? ...unfortunately not.

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  3. #202

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    Here we go again... make up your mind, can we be objective about what makes great art, or not? If the appreciation of all art is subjective, then how did "great art" get to be become great art?

    Are Bird and Trane "great"? Or were they just accidentally deified by "a la mode" media forces and/or public hysteria in much the same way that fashion pushes "artists" like Kanye West and Jayzee up the charts?

    That's right, there's no answer, so stop trying to have it both ways. You can't say that no art is greater than any other, and then decide that there is "great" art, which implies that some art must be less than great! LOL!
    I can. Please, check my previous post - as said there that it is neither subjective, not objective that I was talking about considering judgement.. that's why 'both ways' as you called are possible...

    I do not want to continue this too here, and appologize if being too emotional provoked this off-top. Just wanted to let you know that I do not take it that simple... if you wich I can always keep the discussion in another thread or in private...

    And yes Mark, let's get back to what your thread asks. It's a great topic. I often wonder how far into Parker us guitarists should really go, by pondering- "How far into Wes should sax players really go"...
    I don't think they should or would, mostly take guitar as supplimentary, secondary instrument... though I actually heard form a few clarinet, sax players that they 'envied' harmonic possibilities of guitar, one of them also said that 'guitarists begin to play in chords and that makes them involved in harmonic hearing and thinking from the very beginning.. and we (horn players) begin with lines and often underestimate harmony until we encounter problems with it' ... unfortunately it is partly true especially if the educators are not really good to push them into it.
    Guitar has its place in jazz, it has even certain 'image' in profane audience and it is not associated with horn imitation... the fact that CC or Wes tried to imitate horns is connected more with vocal nature of jazz, they tried to sound voice... it is more difficult on guitar than on the horn... but it does not mean they put themselves behind the horns, just took the best and applied it to guitar possibilities...
    No sax can imitate chordal colo of Wes.. special drive of his octaves, sharp attack of Grant Green... broken arpeggiato style of chord melodies played with a pick... and all that is also associated with jazz sound

    As per Wes... he is great, but his impact is very instrumental... say.. if he were a sax player he would not have been Parker or Trane.

    Bird really had something Mozartian in his approach to music, he obviously had some revelations of which he himself probalbly was both enchanted and terrified, music was a kind of mystical experience for him... I remember in one interview he said something like: I here a note that I have to play but I cannot hit it, i get very close to it but cannot get into it... It was not metaphorical he did not seem to be this kind of guy... I am sure he spoke about 'tritone' in certain context ('close to it') - when he plays I feel at moments that he is getting into point where local functiional relations between tonic and dominant like get 'froxen' - the point of balance - neither makes more tension... and I litterally feel that he tries to use this point as a gate.. he tries to go further... obviously it is impossible because then he would have lost connection with the context... but it was not needed, that aspiration that what was needed... he really had mystical experince with I am more than sure... and probably more than Trane who conciously developed a system for it.

    And Wes was a great story-teller, he was here, one of us, he was not obsessed with it just ame out and told great stories about what he loved best... about what we love
    Last edited by Jonah; 03-25-2015 at 04:16 AM.

  4. #203

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonah
    I can. Please, check my previous post - as said there that it is neither subjective, not objective that I was talking about considering judgement.. that's why 'both ways' as you called are possible...
    OK, I may have misunderstood, still, it was a point worth making. We're all on a slippery slope when it comes to subjectivity in art...

  5. #204

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    Y'know, PP, I'll get the mess beat out of me for saying it on a guitar forum, but as influential as Wes was to guitar players, he really didn't innovate anything musically. He was just the best damn hard bop playin' guitarist ever (IMHO)

    And that's fine!

    Parker, with a few others, changed jazz--the whole course of the music-- forever.

    So back to Parker...I'm learning Anthropology as a result of this thread. It's kicking my ass.
    Am inclined to agree, but in defence of Wes, we should all remember the story of how he came to the attention of Orin Keepnews. It was the Adderley brothers, who's minds were well and truly blown upon hearing Wes perform in some club. The went running into the night to make a 2 am phone call to Orin saying " You gotta hear this guy, he's doin' all this crazy shit, and we have no idea what he's doing!"

    The Adderleys, of course were no slouches themselves...

  6. #205
    destinytot Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Jonah
    I can. Please, check my previous post - as said there that it is neither subjective, not objective that I was talking about considering judgement.. that's why 'both ways' as you called are possible...

    I do not want to continue this too here, and appologize if being too emotional provoked this off-top. Just wanted to let you know that I do not take it that simple... if you wich I can always keep the discussion in another thread or in private...



    I don't think they should or would, mostly take guitar as supplimentary, secondary instrument... though I actually heard form a few clarinet, sax players that they 'envied' harmonic possibilities of guitar, one of them also said that 'guitarists begin to play in chords and that makes them involved in harmonic hearing and thinking from the very beginning.. and we (horn players) begin with lines and often underestimate harmony until we encounter problems with it' ... unfortunately it is partly true especially if the educators are not really good to push them into it.
    Guitar has its place in jazz, it has even certain 'image' in profane audience and it is not associated with horn imitation... the fact that CC or Wes tried to imitate horns is connected more with vocal nature of jazz, they tried to sound voice... it is more difficult on guitar than on the horn... but it does not mean they put themselves behind the horns, just took the best and applied it to guitar possibilities...
    No sax can imitate chordal colo of Wes.. special drive of his octaves, sharp attack of Grant Green... broken arpeggiato style of chord melodies played with a pick... and all that is also associated with jazz sound

    As per Wes... he is great, but his impact is very instrumental... say.. if he were a sax player he would not have been Parker or Trane.

    Bird really had something Mozartian in his approach to music, he obviously had some revelations of which he himself probalbly was both enchanted and terrified, music was a kind of mystical experience for him... I remember in one interview he said something like: I here a note that I have to play but I cannot hit it, i get very close to it but cannot get into it... It was not metaphorical he did not seem to be this kind of guy... I am sure he spoke about 'tritone' in certain context ('close to it') - when he plays I feel at moments that he is getting into point where local functiional relations between tonic and dominant like get 'froxen' - the point of balance - neither makes more tension... and I litterally feel that he tries to use this point as a gate.. he tries to go further... obviously it is impossible because then he would have lost connection with the context... but it was not needed, that aspiration that what was needed... he really had mystical experince with I am more than sure... and probably more than Trane who conciously developed a system for it.

    And Wes was a great story-teller, he was here, one of us, he was not obsessed with it just ame out and told great stories about what he loved best... about what we love
    I really enjoyed this post. Thank you!

  7. #206

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    Quote Originally Posted by princeplanet
    Am inclined to agree, but in defence of Wes, we should all remember the story of how he came to the attention of Orin Keepnews. It was the Adderley brothers, who's minds were well and truly blown upon hearing Wes perform in some club. The went running into the night to make a 2 am phone call to Orin saying " You gotta hear this guy, he's doin' all this crazy shit, and we have no idea what he's doing!"

    The Adderleys, of course were no slouches themselves...
    exactly. to say that someone innovated on a musical instrument but not in music, isn't really logical.

    perhaps Jeff means his compositions weren't innovative.

    Wes innovated musically in a number of ways, which are very easy to list.

  8. #207

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    Some odd statistics,

    at the moment, there are more than 200 posts in this thread, 41 vote, less than 10 people gave the names of, or the list of the tunes they know (to play), one of the only two who posted their playing is me and I voted "I don't know any".

    Honorable mention of destinytot for posting own composition in notation.

  9. #208

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    Quote Originally Posted by fumblefingers
    exactly. to say that someone innovated on a musical instrument but not in music, isn't really logical.

    perhaps Jeff means his compositions weren't innovative.

    Wes innovated musically in a number of ways, which are very easy to list.
    I wouldn't mind seeing your list.

    I think there's a few obvious things, like the thumb, which had never been done like that before...but guitar players everywhere didn't throw away all their picks...Wes also could solo in octaves like no one else, but he didn't invent that idea.

    I dunno...I stick to my guns--Wes definitely changed the way guitar was played, but not through innovation--he did it by raising the bar. So I don't think jazz as a whole changed it's sound because of Wes...I just think a new standard was set for guitar players. A lot of cats might have thought they were hot stuff...and then they heard Wes.

    But maybe this is a different thread for a different day. But it could be an interesting one...I think the list of real game changers in jazz is pretty small...and very horn-dominated.

  10. #209

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    Quote Originally Posted by princeplanet
    Am inclined to agree, but in defence of Wes, we should all remember the story of how he came to the attention of Orin Keepnews. It was the Adderley brothers, who's minds were well and truly blown upon hearing Wes perform in some club. The went running into the night to make a 2 am phone call to Orin saying " You gotta hear this guy, he's doin' all this crazy shit, and we have no idea what he's doing!"

    The Adderleys, of course were no slouches themselves...
    That's a great story. Another, more recent one, concerns Sonny Rollins giving the names of two guys he considered to be total jazz masters: Elvin Jones (drums) and Wes Montgomery (guitar).

  11. #210

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    I wouldn't mind seeing your list.

    I think there's a few obvious things, like the thumb, which had never been done like that before...but guitar players everywhere didn't throw away all their picks...Wes also could solo in octaves like no one else, but he didn't invent that idea.

    I dunno...I stick to my guns--Wes definitely changed the way guitar was played, but not through innovation--he did it by raising the bar. So I don't think jazz as a whole changed it's sound because of Wes...I just think a new standard was set for guitar players. A lot of cats might have thought they were hot stuff...and then they heard Wes.

    But maybe this is a different thread for a different day. But it could be an interesting one...I think the list of real game changers in jazz is pretty small...and very horn-dominated.
    yep, its a different thread, lol.

    but,

    you nailed it, the thumb playing, octaves, and three part solo approach (horn lines, octaves, chords).

    Wes was the only major jazz player who extensively used the thumb, and played melodies and improvised solos in octaves. Others certainly played octaves but not like him, not the way he featured them so emphatically.

    the test? when someone plays the guitar like him, it is immediately obvious who they are aping, err i mean copying, err i mean ripping off, err i mean emulating. they aren't referencing someone before him, or someone after. it's him.

    case for innovation, made.

  12. #211

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    I think the list of real game changers in jazz is pretty small...and very horn-dominated.
    Well, there's the piano: Fats Waller, Art Tatum, Bud Powell, Monk. Nat Cole (first) and Oscar Peterson with drummerless trios made a real big difference too.

    Though it is not as well known, even among guitarists, as it should be, Barney Kessel's playing on Her Name Is Julie" (-her voice, his guitar and an upright bass made all the sounds on that great record) had a huge influence on what came to be known as Bossa Nova. When Jobim met Kessell later, he (Jobim) thanked Kessel for giving him so many harmonic ideas!

    Here's Barney backing Julie London on "Cry Me A River." This was a huge hit and shows one reason Barney was such an important guitarist.



    Here's "I'm In The Mood For Love," a track I prefer. Barney's playing here set a new standard for comping for singers.

  13. #212

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkRhodes
    That's a great story. Another, more recent one, concerns Sonny Rollins giving the names of two guys he considered to be total jazz masters: Elvin Jones (drums) and Wes Montgomery (guitar).
    Say, didn't you hear that from me? I think I reported that here on this forum recently after I heard him say that in the flesh at a post concert talk he gave a year or two ago. He absolutely did single out those 2 very players, and emphasised " total " when calling them total masters...

  14. #213

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkRhodes
    Well, there's the piano: Fats Waller, Art Tatum, Bud Powell, Monk. Nat Cole (first) and Oscar Peterson with drummerless trios made a real big difference too.
    If you're talking piano playing game changers, then I guess you oughta include Bill Evans, Herbie, McCoy, maybe Chick and Jarret.... Mehldau even...

  15. #214

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    Quote Originally Posted by fumblefingers
    exactly. to say that someone innovated on a musical instrument but not in music, isn't really logical.

    perhaps Jeff means his compositions weren't innovative.

    Wes innovated musically in a number of ways, which are very easy to list.
    And some that are downright impossible to list. Even if you just consider his single line playing, his melodicism is not just unrivalled, it's darn uncanny. There are more twists and turns in some of his solos than in most of the great horn or piano soloists (IMO). His note choices, devices and harmonic concept were also fresh at the time. Sure, only guitar players were influenced by him, certainly Benson and Martino, but I did sense that the organ, piano and horn players that played with Wes picked up a few of his nuances...

    Who knows why horns and piano players don't really copy the guitar greats (if Miles copied CC, then I can't hear it!). I hang out on sax forums, and when the topic comes up, quite a few players say things like "yeah, there's a few guitar things I wish we could play, like Hendrix..." They seem to like Rock/Blues bendy licks, the kind we're all too embarrassed to admit we used to play! Haha
    Last edited by princeplanet; 03-25-2015 at 10:40 AM.

  16. #215

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont

    ....I dunno...I stick to my guns--Wes definitely changed the way guitar was played, but not through innovation--he did it by raising the bar. So I don't think jazz as a whole changed it's sound because of Wes...I just think a new standard was set for guitar players. A lot of cats might have thought they were hot stuff...and then they heard Wes.....

    .

    To stir the pot a little, I've read in more than a few interviews with the older players that Charlie didn't bring all that much new material to the table. In the Mr B quote above, just substitute Bird for Wes, and that about sums up their view on Bird. They say that apart from the rhythmic displacement and some new licks using upper chord partials, he was just a "sped up Lester Young". I'm not saying I can agree or disagree, I can't be sure, I mean I hear a difference between Bird and the predecessors, as well as the copycats. But then I can say the same thing for Wes.

    The fact that Bird influenced everyone and Wes influenced only some guitarists should not diminish Wes's stature as an innovative genius. I might even (subjectively!!) offer that Wes was Bird's equal in many ways, whether the history books say so or not!

  17. #216

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    Well, I certainly hope I'm not diminishing Wes in any way...I think he's the best there ever was.

  18. #217

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    Well, I certainly hope I'm not diminishing Wes in any way...I think he's the best there ever was.
    Guitarist, or Musician?

  19. #218

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    Best damn hard bop guitar player ever, and on the Mt. Rushmore of hard bop in general

  20. #219

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    Best damn hard bop guitar player ever, and on the Mt. Rushmore of hard bop in general
    Yeah, so who else is carved into the cliff face next to Wes on that "Mt Rushmore of Hard Bop"? Rollins? Trane? Miles?

    Great idea for a new monument! Maybe Bill Clinton can pull some strings at the next Skull and Crossbones meet...

  21. #220

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    Lol...

    Hmmm...for me, Lee Morgan, Ron Carter, Sonny Clark, Art Blakey, Benny Golson, maybe Cannonball...

    It's probably just some iteration of the Messengers, right?

  22. #221

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    Back to Parker's music, the music is where it all happens.

    The Classic Yardbird Suite.


  23. #222

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkRhodes
    Well, there's the piano: Fats Waller, Art Tatum, Bud Powell, Monk. Nat Cole (first) and Oscar Peterson with drummerless trios made a real big difference too.

    Though it is not as well known, even among guitarists, as it should be, Barney Kessel's playing on Her Name Is Julie" (-her voice, his guitar and an upright bass made all the sounds on that great record) had a huge influence on what came to be known as Bossa Nova. When Jobim met Kessell later, he (Jobim) thanked Kessel for giving him so many harmonic ideas!

    Here's Barney backing Julie London on "Cry Me A River." This was a huge hit and shows one reason Barney was such an important guitarist.



    Here's "I'm In The Mood For Love," a track I prefer. Barney's playing here set a new standard for comping for singers.

    Thank you for that. I did not know about the connection between Kessel/Julie is Her Name and Jobim. This work was influential in other ways too:


    Quote Originally Posted by HighSpeedSpoon
    ... Julie is Her Name [was] originally published as Volume I (1955) and Volume II (1958). This is still some of my favorite music ... Volume I featured Barney Kessel on guitar and Ray Leatherwood on bass, and Volume II featured Howard Roberts on guitar with Red Mitchell on bass. At least one source says that after the success of Julie Is Her Name, "every uptown singer -- from Johnny Mathis to Chet Baker to Sarah Vaughan -- was recording with a guitar/bass duo". ...
    Nothing against Howard Roberts, but I imagine that Volume I with Barney Kessel clearly led the way. If nothing else, it was 3 years ahead of Volume II.

  24. #223
    destinytot Guest
    They say that apart from the rhythmic displacement and some new licks using upper chord partials, he was just a "sped up Lester Young".
    I can buy that, but "just" seems to mock mere mortals.

  25. #224

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    Lol...

    Hmmm...for me, Lee Morgan, Ron Carter, Sonny Clark, Art Blakey, Benny Golson, maybe Cannonball...

    It's probably just some iteration of the Messengers, right?
    If we add Jackie McClean, will they all fit? Speaking of Jackie Mac, I think he has great lines for us guitar wackers. Never seen a Jackie Mac Omnibook. Is there even a Dexter one? Another great one for guitar lines, methinks.

    But yeah, back to Bird. I think I learned the Koko and Billie's Bounce solos a few years back. But the lines, or even the cells, never seem to appear in my playing. I guess at bottom I just don't wanna sound like that, as great as it is... I probably prefer all the greats who stole shit of Bird and straightened it out a little. And yes Mr B, just about every soloist that Blakey ever found for the Messengers is right up my alley too.

    Art Blakey- please, at the very least, can we have an Art Blakey monument?

  26. #225

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    Quote Originally Posted by princeplanet
    Say, didn't you hear that from me? I think I reported that here on this forum recently after I heard him say that in the flesh at a post concert talk he gave a year or two ago. He absolutely did single out those 2 very players, and emphasised " total " when calling them total masters...
    Probably! I sometimes forget where I heard things. Thanks for clearing that up. (I was wondering where it came from.)

  27. #226

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    Art...man...one of my little jazz wisdoms I give to people getting into jazz is that if it has Art Blakey on drums, it's probably worth hearing.

    as to Parker.

    He's someone I haven't transcribed much of, just a few licks here and there...I should do more, I suppose. I don't know how much I'd get out of it at this point, I certainly don't have the technical facility to pull some of it off in "real time."

  28. #227

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    In thinking about a theme of this thread, one name popped into my head: Miles. I love a lot of his material and some of his bands and recordings are among my all-time favorites. He had a distinctive way of blowing the horn but I don't think it can be said he changed the way most trumpet players played. (I mean physically play---hold, finger, blow--their trumpets.)

    I say this because there seems to be a suggestion that being an influential jazz musician means changing the way people play that same instrument (and other instrumentalists play their instruments). I don't think that's, um, a clear idea. (It may be a good one, it may be true, but I'm not clear on what truth is being claimed.)

    To take a simple example: Max Roach was a wildly influential drummer, as was Elvin Jones, but they didn't invent some new way of hitting a snare drum or ride cymbal. They are both giants. They were both great. They were innovative. Any band they played with was better for having them. But they didn't reinvent the snare drum or something. Miles didn't reinvent the trumpet. And I'm not sure how one might say Charlie Parker's playing changed the way, say, Clifford Brown played a trumpet or Oscar Peterson played a piano.

    I love Bird too and think his tone was distinctive. (I think the main thing about Bird and Coltrane---and Miles, for that matter---among non-musicians is simply their tone. They express a lot of feeling with their basic tones.) But I don't know how much he changed the way people play alto saxophone. (I'm not saying he didn't. I don't play alto sax, or any sax, and don't know how Bird's mechanics influenced those of, well, most bebop alto players since.) And I really don't know what it would even mean to suggest he changed the way Wes played guitar or Elvin Jones played drums or Horace Silver played piano.

  29. #228

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    All great points!!! I guess my main contention on this guitarist as an innovator that changed the music of jazz through their playing is that I have never had a horn player,pianist,drummer,vocalist etc. call 4on6, Bright Size Life, Minor Swing, Cisco,El Hombre, West Coast Blues, etc. But on many many gigs I've been on Now's the Time,All Blues,Blue in Green, So What,Joy Spring etc. Are called and there is an expectation that I know these tunes.I believe that all of the other instruments have dominated the growth/progress of jazz up to now, this current generation. As innovative a guitarist and beloved giant master of jazz that Wes is horn players don't know his tunes. Yet here we are talking about how many Bird tunes we know. Ha ha ha. As an aside the number one jazz guitar tune that audience and other instrumentalist request in my experience is Breezin' mostly associated with Benson even though Gabor Szabo made an earlier version that is super tasty.
    Last edited by eddy b.; 03-25-2015 at 02:02 PM.

  30. #229

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkRhodes
    In thinking about a theme of this thread, one name popped into my head: Miles. I love a lot of his material and some of his bands and recordings are among my all-time favorites. He had a distinctive way of blowing the horn but I don't think it can be said he changed the way most trumpet players played. (I mean physically play---hold, finger, blow--their trumpets.)

    I say this because there seems to be a suggestion that being an influential jazz musician means changing the way people play that same instrument (and other instrumentalists play their instruments). I don't think that's, um, a clear idea. (It may be a good one, it may be true, but I'm not clear on what truth is being claimed.)

    To take a simple example: Max Roach was a wildly influential drummer, as was Elvin Jones, but they didn't invent some new way of hitting a snare drum or ride cymbal. They are both giants. They were both great. They were innovative. Any band they played with was better for having them. But they didn't reinvent the snare drum or something. Miles didn't reinvent the trumpet. And I'm not sure how one might say Charlie Parker's playing changed the way, say, Clifford Brown played a trumpet or Oscar Peterson played a piano.

    I love Bird too and think his tone was distinctive. (I think the main thing about Bird and Coltrane---and Miles, for that matter---among non-musicians is simply their tone. They express a lot of feeling with their basic tones.) But I don't know how much he changed the way people play alto saxophone. (I'm not saying he didn't. I don't play alto sax, or any sax, and don't know how Bird's mechanics influenced those of, well, most bebop alto players since.) And I really don't know what it would even mean to suggest he changed the way Wes played guitar or Elvin Jones played drums or Horace Silver played piano.
    I can't speak for others, but when I say "changed the way people played" I'm not talking about mechanics...I'm talking about note choice, rhythm, tone, all that...

  31. #230

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vladan
    Some odd statistics,

    at the moment, there are more than 200 posts in this thread, 41 vote, less than 10 people gave the names of, or the list of the tunes they know (to play), one of the only two who posted their playing is me and I voted "I don't know any".
    If you want another video here's one of me and Dutchbopper playing Jordu (ok I know it's not by Parker).

    We have never met in person so some technological wizardry was used!


  32. #231

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    Quote Originally Posted by eddy b.
    All great points!!! I guess my main contention on this guitarist as an innovator that changed the music of jazz through their playing is that I have never had a horn player,pianist,drummer,vocalist etc. call 4on6, Bright Size Life, Minor Swing, Cisco,El Hombre, West Coast Blues, etc. But on many many gigs I've been on Now's the Time,All Blues,Blue in Green, So What,Joy Spring etc. Are called and there is an expectation that I know these tunes.I believe that all of the other instruments have dominated the growth/progress of jazz up to now, this current generation. As innovative a guitarist and beloved giant master of jazz that Wes is horn players don't know his tunes. .
    It's probably because we're a lot more broad minded than horn players are! ;o)

  33. #232

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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop
    If you want another video here's one of me and Dutchbopper playing Jordu (ok I know it's not by Parker).

    We have never met in person so some technological wizardry was used! ...
    Yes, I already listened to that one, some time ago in one different thread about I don't know what. You're good.

  34. #233

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    About Parker's tone and the way he changed what people played ...

    Others have commented on Parker's phrasing, articulation, and timing. At the moment I accept on faith that these are distinctive, and perhaps more than I can appreciate at this stage of my journey.

    While not to detract from the totality of Parker's genius, some elements of his phrasing and vocabulary were heavily used before him. For example, buried somewhere around the house I have a Louis Armstrong transcription that came out of Scott Reeves' book Creative Jazz Improvisation (4th Edition) and that has significant across-the-bar phrasing, enclosure, and IIRC some sidestepping. I have heard at least one Armstrong clip where the rhythm section seems unable to keep up! I will look for these things, but I fear they may have been lost in a move.

    The three things that seem distinctive about Parker to me are

    1. His speed
    2. His vocabulary including the liberal use of bebop scales.
    3. His ability to put everything together high tempo.


    These are not the only great thing about him, but they are the three distinctive things of which I am aware at the moment. The second item, vocabulary, seems to me to be a way that he (and Diz) influenced how people after him play.

    As for tone ... It is difficult to separate a player's tone from the rest of their presentation, but people do it, myself included. That said, I have to say that I find Parker's tone beautiful, but not earthshakingly so or in any way pioneering. I find it easier to focus on his tone in his slower presentations, and this is the best one I've run across in terms of tone:


  35. #234

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    Quote Originally Posted by HighSpeedSpoon
    The three things that seem distinctive about Parker to me are

    1. His speed
    2. His vocabulary including the liberal use of bebop scales.
    3. His ability to put everything together high tempo.
    I think you're overlooking Rhythm.

  36. #235

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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop
    I think you're overlooking Rhythm.
    I think that is fair, although phrasing is related in my mind, but thank you just the same. And while we are on the subject of what I overlooked, how about melody? Charlie Parker was melodic, even at speed.

  37. #236

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    Quote Originally Posted by HighSpeedSpoon
    I think that is fair, although phrasing is related in my mind, but thank you just the same. And while we are on the subject of what I overlooked, how about melody? Charlie Parker was melodic, even at speed.
    Oh yes, very melodic. What I meant by rhythm is that in all Bird's solos, there are amazing rhythmic games and variations going on that I think you would have rarely heard before he came along. For example Coleman Hawkins was harmonically advanced and could eat up the chord changes with virtuosity, but not displaying those rhythms.

    If you slow one of Bird's solos down and try to play along, even if you know the correct notes, trying to match his rhythmic complexities and 'elasticity' is incredibly difficult.

  38. #237

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vladan
    Yes, I already listened to that one, some time ago in one different thread about I don't know what. You're good.
    Thanks Vladan. There's always room for improvement though!

    Actually I think it's really useful to record yourself. You hear the weak points that you don't notice while playing. Then you know what to focus on to improve.

  39. #238

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    Re: Mark's post-

    Except Max and Elvin did re-invent how the drum set is played in jazz.

    And it's likely that the approach of the Coltrane Quartet (which remains influential) was - in part - developed to capitalize on the sound and approach of Elvin Jones.

    From the Washington Post Obit:

    "Mr. Roach's most significant innovations came in the 1940s, when he and another jazz drummer, Kenny Clarke, devised a new concept of musical time. By playing the beat-by-beat pulse on the "ride" cymbal instead of on the thudding bass drum, Roach and Clarke developed a flexible, flowing rhythmic pattern that allowed soloists to play freely. The new approach also left space for the drummer to insert dramatic accents on the snare drum, "crash" cymbal and other components of the trap set.
    By matching his rhythmic attack with a tune's melody, Mr. Roach brought a newfound subtlety of expression to his instrument. He often shifted the dynamic emphasis from one part of his drum kit to another within a single phrase, creating a sense of tonal color and movement.


    Virtually every jazz drummer plays in that manner today, but in the 1940s, it was a revolutionary musical advance."

    But to Mark's point about Miles and to bring this back to the OP a bit, a musician's influence can be multi- dimensional. Is Miles more important as a trumpet player, composer, musical conceptualist, or band leader ( including who he hires and how much control he delegates)? And Parker? Player, theorist, and composer. He's like Bach. Like him or not, he's directly and indirectly responsible for the development of our language - the language of jazz and music in general. If you are serious about music you would be wise to study and understand it.
    Last edited by rictroll; 03-25-2015 at 07:10 PM. Reason: add stuff

  40. #239

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    Grahambop & Dutchbopper.

    Congrats on the Jordu rendition, I've heard it previously but it's
    certainly worth another listen , absolute bliss.


    Best.

  41. #240

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    Quote Originally Posted by rictroll
    Except Max and Elvin did re-invent how the drum set is played in jazz.

    And it's likely that the approach of the Coltrane Quartet (which remains influential) was - in part - developed to capitalize on the sound and approach of Elvin Jones.
    I absolutely love that 'afro-latin' polyrhythmic groove that Elvin patented (I don't know the correct name for it!). I don't think anyone played the drums like this before Elvin. Art Blakey did some things which were a bit similar, but Elvin just took it to a whole new level.

    Here's a classic example. I have listened to this track loads of times, and I still can't figure out the drum pattern Elvin does here. It sounds like he is constantly fitting more sub-divisions of beats into the bar than there can possibly be.

    This performance always takes me 'out of this world'!


  42. #241

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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop
    I absolutely love that 'afro-latin' polyrhythmic groove that Elvin patented (I don't know the correct name for it!). I don't think anyone played the drums like this before Elvin. Art Blakey did some things which were a bit similar, but Elvin just took it to a whole new level.

    Here's a classic example. I have listened to this track loads of times, and I still can't figure out the drum pattern Elvin does here. It sounds like he is constantly fitting more sub-divisions of beats into the bar than there can possibly be.

    This performance always takes me 'out of this world'!

    Always amazed by this band. Thanks for reminding me.

  43. #242

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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop
    Thanks Vladan. There's always room for improvement though!

    Actually I think it's really useful to record yourself. You hear the weak points that you don't notice while playing. Then you know what to focus on to improve.
    Especially when I listen to something I recorded long ago enough to become distanced. Usually in what I thought was good I hear all possible problems, mostly with timing , while what I thought was total crap suddenly becomes interesting and not bad at all.

    Let's not divert the thread to one more sub topic.

  44. #243

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    I know Ornithology, Bill's Bounce, Blues for Alice, Little Suede Shoes (from a workshop- don't care for the tune), maybe a couple more I can't recall off-hand. I like Anthropology so maybe I'll work on that. When it comes to Bird I stick to the heads. I don't want to spend time on the solos.

  45. #244

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    Quote Originally Posted by HighSpeedSpoon

    As for tone ... It is difficult to separate a player's tone from the rest of their presentation, but people do it, myself included. That said, I have to say that I find Parker's tone beautiful, but not earthshakingly so or in any way pioneering. I find it easier to focus on his tone in his slower presentations, and this is the best one I've run across in terms of tone:
    I agree and more. For me Parker's tone is the reason I'm not the biggest fan of him. I find it rather on the harsher side.. And reading an interview of another legend sax player, I know I'm not alone in thinking that Parker's tone is the least appealing element of his style.

  46. #245

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    This may sound stupid , but i don't know the answer. Why the horn? i mean... things couldn't have been easy for black folks in those days. And i think a horn would be, one of the more costly instruments.and id think hard to get. was not like they were in every corner store!!!. where did all these horns come from? and get into the hands of a very discriminated people group in those days. I hope that's not a Racist question. i hate everyone equally. but would love some in-site , not a war lol

  47. #246

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pocket Player
    This may sound stupid , but i don't know the answer. Why the horn? i mean... things couldn't have been easy for black folks in those days. And i think a horn would be, one of the more costly instruments.and id think hard to get. was not like they were in every corner store!!!. where did all these horns come from? and get into the hands of a very discriminated people group in those days. I hope that's not a Racist question. i hate everyone equally. but would love some in-site , not a war lol
    I remember hearing that a lot of the instruments were passed around during the civil war, so after blacks were allowed to join the army they had access to horns and other European marching instruments, and were taught to play European marching music. I'm pretty sure all the new Orleans stuff has its roots in marching bands, I would say when guys from that area spread out they took their music with them. But I'm no American historian, I'm not even American! I'm more interested in how the double bass played pizzicato found its way into American folk music.

  48. #247

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hep To The Jive
    I agree and more. For me Parker's tone is the reason I'm not the biggest fan of him. I find it rather on the harsher side.. And reading an interview of another legend sax player, I know I'm not alone in thinking that Parker's tone is the least appealing element of his style.
    Bear in mind, some of those recordings were quite primitive and probably only capture the part of Bird's tone which could cut through.

    Some of the ballad recordings probably give a better idea of how full his tone really was.

    Did that sax player ever hear him live? It makes a big difference.

    I once heard Dexter Gordon at Ronnie Scotts, and believe me, I have never heard a sound like that from any sax player. Even the modern recordings do not fully capture Dexter's sound. It completely filled the club, it was a massive 'wide' tone that seemed to come from all directions in the room. He started playing as soon as he left the dressing-room backstage, and his sound did NOT get any louder when he approached the mike and went through the PA system. I have never heard that happen before, and I saw most of the famous sax players at Ronnie Scotts.

  49. #248

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pocket Player
    This may sound stupid , but i don't know the answer. Why the horn? ...
    Maybe because horns are part of a community effort, and certainly were appropriate for a lot of the early New Orleans jazz. Also simply because many of these musicians preferred horns, perhaps because horns are closer to singing than guitar and piano.

  50. #249

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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop
    Bear in mind, some of those recordings were quite primitive and probably only capture the part of Bird's tone which could cut through.

    Some of the ballad recordings probably give a better idea of how full his tone really was. ...
    But some of them were not at all primitive for the time and convey beautiful tone. Coleman Hawkins playing Body and Soul is the first that comes to mind for me. Illinois Jacquet playing Flyin' Home is another, and not a ballad either. IIRC the seminal Hawk version was done in 1939, and Jacquet's famous recording with Lionel Hampton was in 1942.

    One wonders why Parker did not usually record as well.

  51. #250

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    Quote Originally Posted by rictroll
    Re: Mark's post-

    Except Max and Elvin did re-invent how the drum set is played in jazz.
    Even if one grants this, it does not follow that they changed the way other instrumentalists played THEIR instruments. This was the caveat about Wes' influence, that it was very guitar-centric, that it didn't change the way other people (horn players, drummers, pianists) played their instruments. I'm not sure that's a clear standard.

    Earlier, someone pointed out how rhythmic Bird's playing was and someone else mentioned that Bird had played drums. I think that rhythmic quality of Bird's playing----like bebop drumming----is important. But I don't know if he got that from Max Roach or Kenny Clarke or it was a separate development....