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/jazz/: Tone cluster edition
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You are currently reading a thread in /mu/ - Music

Thread replies: 54
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So /mu/, what are we listening to?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2tUMhMXrygM
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Been listening to zoot sims almost non-stop for a couple of weeks and there is no end in sight. He plays so fucking smooth and emotional, it reminds me of bill evans.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zs9vSTxFVns
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anything on this lineup you'd especially recommend ? I have tickets for Mulatu Astake and Tony Allen already, but I can't decide between the others, Hasse Poulsen/Hélène Labarrière, Anja Lechner/François Couturier and Oliver Lake being my three main choices
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Mingus * OH YEAH!

the song about his love for chicken
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>>62059343
Tony Malaby is great
Omar Sosa will probably be cool to
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Been listening to Gil Evans a lot more lately, want to get into Eric Dolphy after hearing this (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oPiDFQJ15P8) but don't know where to start, record wise
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>>62058058
Just putting it out there in case JTG comes by this thread that he can put up his latin jazz playlist for /blindfold/. I'm going under the assumption that he's doing that at some point during the week and so I'm not working on one atm.

Oh and I'm listening to this album atm.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lP6f_QpIal8
I swear, if the recording quality was better, it'd be considered a Mingus classic.
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I'm listening to Ascension for the first time... I'm kind of new to jazz.

This stuff is making my brain melt, I get that it's free-form, and I can really appreciate the musicianship and talent of all the artists, it's just difficult to make sense of everything at the moment.
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>>62060140
Listen to meditations its alot less cluttered an alot better than ascension imo
Acesnsion felt like a coleman free jazz rip off
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>>62060610
Lel that is absolutely horrendous advice for someone just getting into jazz.
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>>62060710
Why is that if he wants to get into free jazz let him get into free jazz its really not as hard to get into as people make it out to be
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>>62060817
I just really like the music theory of jazz in general.
Free jazz is wild, man.
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>>62060817
He specifically said he couldn't make sense of it though. Which makes sense because if he's new to jazz, he hasn't all of the context that went into the free jazz movement emerging and all of the language of jazz that can be seen to evolve into the sort of thing Coltrane did in his late career. Sure, you can listen to it as sonic wallpaper for the textures like a lot of people do but you're missing a good 70% of the picture and what really makes the music so breathtaking.
If someone from the 1800s asked you to introduce them to rock and said they'd heard White Light/White Heat, would you then suggest they go listen to Metal Machine Music or Faust as a logical next step for understanding the genre?
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Some blues playing in a burger joint.
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>>62060945
So what should I start with first in order to progress and fully understand the free jazz movement?
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>>62061044
Start by having some knowledge on where it comes from (by studying theory and records, not by reading wikipedia) and why it has originated
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>>62061044
Bebop, free jazz is basically the weird, introverted, ugly cousin of bebop
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this one will probably end up in my 2016 favorites. what good 2016 records have you listened to, /jazz/ ?
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>>62061044
The other 60 years of jazz that came before it.
Take the bigger players first and try build a picture in your head of how the music evolved.
>>62061154
helps aswell and will make you a more thoughtful listener to music in general.

I mean, that's a tremendous amount of work though if your end goal is to just understand a few free jazz records.
You really should be listening to that stuff because you enjoy it.
>>62061182
You could make the same arguments about bebop as for free jazz though and say you should go back to swing and dixieland and ragtime and the blues in general before you can really get anywhere.
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>>62060049
JTG sent me the playlist yesterday but I didn't get it uploaded until now.

This week's Blindfold theme is Latin jazz.

http://www45.zippyshare.com/v/hwL2OIIi/file.html
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>>62061234
Any recommendations of jazz that has some wild time signatures?
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>>62061476
Take 5 :^)
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>>62061476
Don Ellis is generally the go-to guy apart from the obvious Dave Brubeck whose unconventional time signature stuff is a little bit on the cutesy side

I personally think Ellis was too fascinated with doing unconventional forms and weird meters and didn't leave enough room for the musicians to be really fascinating as jazz music, but he certainly used uncommon time signatures a lot and made some entertaining records

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7NLcGLTieEo
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>>62061476
Dave Holland
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pleb here. i like the fast paced stuff. like really fast. any recs?
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>>62061684
listen to Art Tatum playing piano

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CaPeks0H3_s
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>>62060945

I don't personally think you need to go all the way back to grasp free jazz - I personally got into jazz through fusion and started listening and enjoying free jazz well before I had the patience to really get into early bebop or older styles for example, although it helps if you do. If it would have been mandatory to start from Satchmo's Hot Fives and Sevens or something and then move to Charlie Parker etc. I would have probably never become a jazz fan.

I think of it kind of like getting into rock by starting with Robert Johnson or some early blues like that - you'll pick up a lot of cool stuff on the way if you have the patience, but it's entirely possible to listen and enjoy prog rock or whatever else without starting from the beginning and not everyone is going to be fascinated by Robert Johnson.

That said Ascension and Ornette's Free Jazz are particularly challenging starting points because they feature larger ensembles and there's plenty of references to more conventional jazz playing so they feel really chaotic without some knowledge of what happened before - even Brötzmann's Machine Gun would be an easier starting point.

I'd suggest checking out Ornette's The Shape of Jazz to Come and Coltrane's Coltrane and check whether you dig those and work forward from there. If you can't get into them either, then build from the earlier jazz.

If you're a fan of noisy and experimental rock, you can also try contemporary free that has rock influence - it's probably easier to get into for many modern listeners than any of the first generation free/avant-garde jazz desu. Try The Thing for example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=glEmT6fKY7E
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>>62061684
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yrKt0jzyHSg
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>>62062237
Bebop is such a cool composition - love it!

here's another uptempo classic:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M283JFxesic
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>>62061593
What the fuck.... can someone explain how this time signature works?
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>>62062333

I think it's just Ellis being eccentric instead of just saying it's in 11/16 - you can certainly just count to 11 and follow it just fine

I guess the idea is to have the bass and tambourine beat be fourths since that would feel like the natural beat if it was in common time and hence (3 2/3)/4
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>>62062475
Ooooh, what a sneaky little guy.
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>>62061422
Bumping for Monday's thread.
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>>62062475
More likely that Ellis knew that it sounds more impressive to non-musicians when he stands up and announces that the tune is in 3 2/3 over 4
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>>62059908
Out to lunch. but it's pretty hard to swallow so I wouldn't recommend listening to it at launch :PPPPP
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>>62061206
new bill stewart album is pretty kewl
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>>62061476
AVISHAI COHEN!!
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There's nothing to understand in free jazz. People that actually take the time to study Jazz rarely start playing free jazz. That's just saying pretty much everything.

I don't mind people enjoying free jazz but modal stuff and mostly bebop is a lot harder to understand.
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>>62064805
>People that actually take the time to study Jazz rarely start playing free jazz.

You got some kind of source for that?
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>>62065036
Look at graduates from Berkley, the new school, and Julliard. Now see how much of those are playing free jazz and how much aren't. You'll see that most of them aren't.

Those are probably the top 3 jazz schools in the world and that says a lot where a very small percentage of the graduates don't go around playing free jazz.
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>>62065036

I would say you only have to look all the graduates from the numerous institutions that teach jazz and see how many play free jazz. Which is proportionally not a huge number when considering new releases and groups.

>>62064805 does, however, seem to miss the mark imo. The poster seems to imply that students of jazz belittle or disregard free jazz, which is not the case at all. Practically all professional jazz players I have met (not many I admit) + interviews I have seen and read seem to imply the opposite: free jazz is generally found to be both enjoyable and intellectually stimulating. Why most new players don't play free jazz is not a question of choosing the most complex form of music to pursue one's artistic interests (I mean, you can just as easily point out that most graduates tend not to play bebop or modal jazz either, instead favouring various funk-pop-rock-fusion -type contexts, or just contemporary, which is not either modal or bop even if it often draws from both of them), it is purely a matter of personal taste by the artist. Most people do not have a musical background with a lot of free jazz in it so intuitively I would say it isn't a big surprise to find out that most people choose not to play it.
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>>62061476

Any Eric Dolphy solo albums.
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>>62065215
Please post an intellectually stimulating free jazz piece and explain why it's intellectually stimualting.

Because for me every Bird solo is atleast 1000x more intellectually stimulating than any peter brotzmann solo.
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Does anyone here know from where bird took that lick in 0:41?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hF0roScAcUg

I got it on the tip of my tongue and I gotta know where it's from. The original got like clarinets playing this and it has a very eastern vibe to it.
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>>62065314

Well, this is not really addressing the original issue (professional jazzers and free jazz) any more, and I really do not have the time nor, if I am completely honest, the skills to provide proper critique of a random free jazz piece, but here is one that I often find very enjoyable: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NqoBUuA8g1o

It is hard to say what I find "intellectually" stimulating in this piece, but if I would have to say something it would be that it has numerous different aspects that, at first hand, do not seem to entirely connect with each other, yet ultimately form a whole which will always yield more for the listener to find out. In a sense free jazz offers something that can never be exhaustively interpreted in the same way as bebop, for instance, could be. This is mainly because there is no limitation to the music itself, which then can lead to pieces that do not adhere to any musical norms that define pieces of other genres. Indefinability is exactly the essence of free jazz.

The crux of the issue here, I think, is what it means when something is intellectually stimulating. I would define it, straightforwardly, as something which stimulates the intellect, either by providing short-term interests in various matters, or potentially wholly directing its direction to a certain matter. This can obviously be anything depending on the person (falling apples for Newton, getting thrown out of the train for Gandhi), and as such we cannot, objectively and definitely, say whether free jazz is or is not intellectually stimulating. That is something that each individual has to find out for themselves, via self-reflection.
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>>62065709
yea bla bla bla music is subjective. Well obviously. Free jazz is music that doesn't require near the precision and execution that pretty much any other form of Jazz requires. All it really requires I guess is meaning, courage, technique, and some hearing. But even then, if we talk about interplay, and group dynamics, Then those things are so much harder to execute in say, a small trio with the vibe of brad mehldau for example.

To say that Free Jazz is the next step for Jazz or that you have to listen to bebop to understand it is pretty ridicules. Free Jazz is much closer to experimental rock than it is to Bebop. Like this link you posted, it just features a pentatonic riff and then some horn noodling. Like, if you talk about actual Jazz language, then this has pretty much nothing to do with bebop and the genres that emerged from it (excluding free jazz) are built about. Saying that I do have some respect for free jazz but I mostly just hate it when people say that you have to listen to bebop to "fully understand it" since it takes almost nothing from bebop. Bands like Faust and Can and Captain Beefheart are way closer to what you posted than Bird or Dizzy or Bud Powell.

And as for the original issue, well, let's just say that music school almost never teach free jazz. Since there's pretty much nothing to learn for it. Every capable rock musicians can make free jazz.
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>>62066080
>since it takes almost nothing from bebop.

Wasn't that the point of free jazz? To break the rules of chord changes etc. and improvise freely?

I never really found free jazz very intellectual. I really like artists like Kaoru Abe and Paul Flaherty not because they're intellectually stimulating but because they use their instruments to fiercely vent their emotions. More performance art than music.
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>>62066345
>Wasn't that the point of free jazz? To break the rules of chord changes etc. and improvise freely?
Well if that's true then no one should say that to fully understand Free Jazz you need to study Bebop don't you think?
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>>62066395

I agree. I think you're mixing me with >>62065709 though, I just came into this thread.
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>>62059908
his collabs with booker little are legendary, check out their live set at the five spot, and booker littles out front
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>>62066080

Anyone who thinks music moves in logical steps which much be understood in order is quite obviously out of his mind.

Regarding precision and execution, one jazz drummer I know mentioned that the best free he has heard has usually come from groups and players who have both extensively studied their subject and played together for ages. Which, then, makes it not as "free" as some might say free jazz implies. I am not that well-versed in music history, but it seems that often people have considered free jazz as something different from free improvisation. As for why this is the case I would mainly point out that listening to records often categorised as free jazz one notices that they tend to use elements associated with jazz, such as swing and instrumentation (piano trio etc.), whilst groups categorised as free improvisation often utilise a far more varied scale of musical elements. Naturally this is no longer as much the case as it used to be (Gustafsson is a good example), but if one considers the historical context of free jazz it doesn't sound too crazy to say that you should listen to bebop before listening to free jazz. After all, free jazz was at times even a political movement (think Freedom Now Suite, for instance), a reaction against the appropriation of cool jazz and bebop by white folk (bebop obviously contained similar tensions between bop and swing). Of course this doesn't make it so, one can very easily find records like Nation Time or Change of the Century appealing without having heard any jazz before the '60s. There are many ways of talking about music, and someone saying bop is necessary in understanding free jazz (which I find not to be the point of it) is implying a certain context.
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>>62067012

I also find it important to stress the subjective side of art appreciation instead of just waving it as a granted. Subjectivity in arts means that one is responsible for their own arguments, that is, one should always be at least somewhat aware of what it is that makes something tick for them. Otherwise there couldn't even be any discussion, just opinions.
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>>62067012
You type so much and say so little.

Bottom line: Instead of saying to someone that he needs to listen to bebop before free jazz, you might as well say that he should listen to tribal african music or ragtime.
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>>62067398
What does African tribal music have to do with jazz?
The actual level of complexity you've gotten to by the time you're listening to bebop warrants an actual understanding of what people are playing and where it comes from.
The nuances of percussion in early African spirituals isn't needed to understand a 12 bar blues piece but if you don't understand how simple chord progressions work, you're hardly going to understand Coltrane changes and if you've never heard a Charlie Parker song in your life, the sort of thing Eric Dolphy plays will be completely out of context and will sound like he's this lone island of weirdness rather than part of a huge music tradition.
Going back as far as ragtime isn't a bad suggestion at all though. Scott Joplin is the man.
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