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Thread: What is Jazz

  1. #31
    Chief assistant to the assistant chief JHC's Avatar
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    @stu that sounds like communal composing lol
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  2. #32
    Vice Admiral Virtuoso Mat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JHC View Post
    That's OK Mat, so I take it that improvisation is not an essential ingredient as far as you are concerned
    It's important and exciting and actually one of the main reasons I listen to jazz, but I don't consider it a deciding factor.
    Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent.
    -- Victor Hugo


  3. #33
    Vice Admiral Virtuoso Dorsetmike's Avatar
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    @ Colin, do you mean that the improvisation is continuous throughout the work and by all members at the same time? I think that would be near impossible except for solo performances or extensively practised or frequently performed work. In the case of a big band why not think of it as the arranger doing the improvisation with the whole band as his instrument?

    In a piano trio say, will the bass and drums be continuously improvising? I suggest not, though each may do so when they have the solo spot, whereupon the piano will usually provide some backing even if only occasional chords.

    Do you consider the MJQ as jazz, I'm sure a lot of their work is at least partly scored, maybe not to the extent that they have sheet music in front of them when performing, but in practice, to quote Krummhorn's sig "an amateur practices until he gets it right a professional practices until he can't get it wrong".

    Improvisation is a major ingredient, but not continuous throughout the work. The Rhythm section must for the most part stick to providing a consistent background, apart from any solos.
    Cheers MIKE.

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  4. #34
    Chief assistant to the assistant chief JHC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dorsetmike View Post
    @ Colin, do you mean that the improvisation is continuous throughout the work and by all members at the same time? I think that would be near impossible except for solo performances or extensively practised or frequently performed work.
    in a trio it is so easy to improvise the drummer does different patterns the base plays around within the chord the piano will improvise on the melody, they don't have to the choice is theirs.
    In the case of a big band why not think of it as the arranger doing the improvisation with the whole band as his instrument?
    once it is written it ceases to be improvisation

    In a piano trio say, will the bass and drums be continuously improvising? I suggest not, though each may do so when they have the solo spot, whereupon the piano will usually provide some backing even if only occasional chords.
    I think I have provided an answer to that bit Mike

    Do you consider the MJQ as jazz, I'm sure a lot of their work is at least partly scored, maybe not to the extent that they have sheet music in front of them when performing, but in practice, to quote Krummhorn's sig "an amateur practices until he gets it right a professional practices until he can't get it wrong".
    Yes they are Jazz in my book and one of the best. They have played their numbers so many times they do not need any form of score and I would wager that they never use one in practice and they are free to improvise that is the point

    Improvisation is a major ingredient, but not continuous throughout the work. The Rhythm section must for the most part stick to providing a consistent background, apart from any solos.
    The bass and drums can and do improvise it does not mean that they change the beat. all of this gets harder with more musicians seven is an ideal number for this sort of thing, I am not saying that improvisation is the only criteria.I have taken the liberty of quoting my earlier post

    Quote Originally Posted by JHC View Post
    That is the whole point it is not written music thus they are free to improvise that means on the spot immediately at will. Can’t do this if you are reading unless instructed to.
    @Mike all jazz (perhaps not free jazz) follows chord sequences that are ingrained in the memory and in general these are followed but a soloist can lead the group into an entirely different direction and rhythm and change key many times during a number as in a Jam session. None of this is possible if you are playing from a score. And yes soloist can repeat past solos in small or large ens BUT they don’t have to it is up to them.
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  5. #35
    Rear Admiral Appassionata
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    I doubt whether true improvisation has ever played a major role in jazz (and ever then
    was due to players forgetting the music).

  6. #36
    Chief assistant to the assistant chief JHC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OLDUDE View Post
    I doubt whether true improvisation has ever played a major role in jazz (and ever then
    was due to players forgetting the music).
    Oh come on John........ have you been in a Jazz Club?
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  7. #37
    Rear Admiral Appassionata
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    Yeah Colin but how many times have they been over the same "improvisation"

  8. #38
    Chief assistant to the assistant chief JHC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OLDUDE View Post
    Yeah Colin but how many times have they been over the same "improvisation"
    Could you expand on that a bit John e.g.
    Do you mean individually or as a group and they are repeating certain phrases or repeating the complete number note for note or something else entirely?
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  9. #39
    Chief assistant to the assistant chief JHC's Avatar
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    Let me help,
    Below is taken from an online article by Chris Dobrian. An American professor of Music
    an improviser can make musical reference to an earlier point in time, but that reference cannot erase the earlier point in time, it can only modify its meaning by referring to it at a later time That new reference must also be part of the improvised piece. On the other hand, the very fact that improvised music is, by definition, made up on the spot means that it can be continually monitored and adapted to the circumstances of the moment. Composed music has, by definition, previously fixed elements which cannot possibly respond to unforeseen conditions of a later time. The real time nature of improvisation gives it strengths and weaknesses which are different from--at times even the exact opposite of--those of composition.
    The complete article is a good but longish read http://music.arts.uci.edu/dobrian/CD.comp.improv.htm
    Last edited by JHC; Dec-14-2012 at 04:37.
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  10. #40
    Spectral Warrior con passion White Knight's Avatar
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    Now, this is Jazz at its finest, bar none: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J5m-7...C08945EAE63E4D.
    Whatever floats your boat May your reach always exceed your grasp

  11. #41
    Chief assistant to the assistant chief JHC's Avatar
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    For you may be. but I had hoped for discussion not clips
    Last edited by JHC; Dec-14-2012 at 06:37.
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  12. #42
    Spectral Warrior con passion White Knight's Avatar
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    Well, maybe I can give you both, then. I believe this short piece by Jarrett blends the best qualities of what--at least for me-- "good" jazz should be comprised. It has a strong flowing melody, the inter-play amongst the musicians is free and easy and one can almost hear the joy and sense of abandon they are feeling when they play together;Jarrett, of course, is a master of improvisation, but whether the most of this work is in fact improvised or not {which I tend to doubt} its development is fresh and eminently coherent, at least to this listener's ears.
    I noticed in your post that you wrote for "you may be". There is no maybe about it for me--what about you?
    Last edited by White Knight; Dec-14-2012 at 07:07.
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  13. #43
    Chief assistant to the assistant chief JHC's Avatar
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    Steve, I enjoy his trio works very much which is jazz in my book it is just the clip you chose did not press my horn or ring my bell, no offence intended
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  14. #44
    Vice Admiral Virtuoso Dorsetmike's Avatar
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    It sounds to me like a jazz version of Einaudi - who I also avoid like the plague- repetitive tinkles but with added drums and occasional interventions by other instruments; for me nothing of interest, the only WOW reaction would be "wow, people actually buy that?" I did listen to the end but only to see if anything happened.
    Cheers MIKE.

    How many roads must a man walk down ... ... before he admits he's lost?

  15. #45
    Chief assistant to the assistant chief JHC's Avatar
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    Mike I had the same reaction but Steve likes it so different people different things eh

    Quote Originally Posted by White Knight View Post
    Jarrett, of course, is a master of improvisation, but whether the most of this work is in fact improvised or not {which I tend to doubt}
    Steve why do you doubt that this work is improvised?
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