Archive | June, 2010

1,000 Jazz Albums You Should Hear Before You Die (651-660)

27 Jun

For those of you who have been following along with the list, you know that we add twenty albums each week. We are going to tweak things a bit for the remainder of the list, adding anywhere from 5 to ten albums at a time, but posting the lists a bit more frequently. Additionally, we will have links next to each album, so that if you find an album interesting, you can click on the link and buy it.

Here is another 10 to add to the list.

Remember that there is no ranking system here, and if you don’t see your favorite jazz album yet, it doesn’t mean it won’t show up.

Hopefully these lists will inspire you to seek some of these albums out that perhaps you haven’t heard before, or revisit an old favorite. And as always, we want your thoughts on any or all of these albums. Either way, let’s get started with this week, and in no particular order, albums 651 through 660.

651. Desert Lady – Lew Tabackin (Concord, 1989) CLICK HERE TO BUY

652. The Proper Angle – Charles Fambrough (CTI Records, 1991) CLICK HERE TO BUY

653. Science Fiction – Ornette Coleman (Sony BMG, 1971) CLICK HERE TO BUY

654. Let’s Get Together (compilation) – Chick Webb (ABM, 2000 compilation date, 1934-1939 recording dates) CLICK HERE TO BUY

655. Nefertiti – Miles Davis (Columbia/Legacy, 1967) CLICK HERE TO BUY

656. Arrival – Jessica Williams (Jazz Focus, 1993) CLICK HERE TO BUY

657. The Spirits of Our Ancestors – Randy Weston (Verve, 1991) CLICK HERE TO BUY

658. Close Enough For Love – Shirley Horn (Verve, 1988) CLICK HERE TO BUY

659. Metheny Mehldau – Pat Metheny and Brad Mehldau (Nonesuch Records, 2006) CLICK HERE TO BUY

660. 1928-1939 (compilation) – Bud Freeman (1998 compilation date, 1928-1939 recording dates) CLICK HERE TO BUY

1,000 Jazz Albums You Should Hear Before You Die (641-650)

1,000 Jazz Albums You Should Hear Befor You Die (621-640)

1,000 Jazz Albums You Should Hear Before You Die – (601-620)

1,000 Jazz Albums You Should Hear Before You Die – The First 500

1,000 Jazz Albums You Should Hear Before You Die (641-650)

16 Jun

For those of you who have been following along with the list, you know that we add twenty albums each week. We are going to tweak things a bit for the remainder of the list, adding anywhere from 5 to ten albums at a time, but posting the lists a bit more frequently. Additionally, we will have links next to each album, so that if you find an album interesting, you can click on the link and buy it.

Here is another 10 to add to the list.

Remember that there is no ranking system here, and if you don’t see your favorite jazz album yet, it doesn’t mean it won’t show up.

Hopefully these lists will inspire you to seek some of these albums out that perhaps you haven’t heard before, or revisit an old favorite. And as always, we want your thoughts on any or all of these albums. Either way, let’s get started with this week, and in no particular order, albums 641 through 650.

641. Ask The Ages – Sonny Sharrock (Axiom, 1991) CLICK HERE TO BUY

642. Live! In Tokyo – Bobby Enriquez (GNP, 1982) CLICK HERE TO BUY

643. Perugia – Roland Hanna (Freedom, 1974) CLICK HERE TO BUY

644. Pure Emotion – Chico O’Farrill (Milestone Records, 1995) CLICK HERE TO BUY

645. Irakere – Irakere (Col, 1979) CLICK HERE TO BUY

646. Stomp it Off (compilation) – Jimmy Lunceford (GRP Records, 1992 compilation date, 1934-35 recording dates) CLICK HERE TO BUY

647. Night Leaves – Jaki Byard and David Eyges (Brownstone Recordings, 1997) CLICK HERE TO BUY

648. We Three – Roy Haynes (JVC Victor, 1958) CLICK HERE TO BUY

649. A Genuine Tong Funeral – Gary Burton (RCA, 1967) CLICK HERE TO BUY

650. Solo Guitar – Earl Klugh (Warner Bros., 1989) CLICK HERE TO BUY

1,000 Jazz Albums You Should Hear Befor You Die (621-640)

1,000 Jazz Albums You Should Hear Before You Die – (601-620)

1,000 Jazz Albums You Should Hear Before You Die – The First 500

The Vuvuzela

15 Jun

If you have watched a single minute of the World Cup, then you have undoubtedly heard the overwhelming obnoxiousness of the Vuvuzela.

You see the Vuvuzela horns in the photo, now multiply that by, say, 30,000. The sound you get is a deafening buzz that sounds like a combination of a massive active bee hive and charging elephants.

Fans, players, coaches, and referees have complained, and so have I. Nevertheless, my curiosity led me to wonder if you could actually make any sort of respectable music with these horns, needless to say tolerable sounds. Here is what I found, enjoy.

"Playing the Room"

11 Jun

If you’ve got a few minutes, please check out this entertaining talk from David Byrne (Talking Heads) about the relationship between the creation of music and the places where they are heard. He explains clearly that what you hear is greatly influenced by where you’re hearing it.

“Playing the Room”

11 Jun

If you’ve got a few minutes, please check out this entertaining talk from David Byrne (Talking Heads) about the relationship between the creation of music and the places where they are heard. He explains clearly that what you hear is greatly influenced by where you’re hearing it.

So texting is out…but what about jazz and driving?

10 Jun

Beginning today in Washington state, using a cell phone while driving becomes a primary offense, and if caught, you can receive a ticket for $124.

I have read and heard a variety of reasons as to why using a phone on the road is a bad idea. The most glaring might be the comparison of texting while driving safety-wise being the equivalent to having a blood alcohol content somewhere between a .08 and a .13.

This lead me to wonder (tongue in cheek) if there was any information about the safety of listening to jazz while driving.

Oddly enough, there is, sort of. Privilege Insurance conducted a study of drivers, and asked them what music they listened to. The safest drivers happened to listen to classical, jazz, easy listening, and indie/folk. The most unsafe drivers listened to indie/rock, dance/house music, or R & B.

Dr. Nichola Dibben, a music psychologist who conducted the survey on behalf of Privilege, went on to suggest that overly complex music, or music with emotive vocals or music that has little repetition, can lead to greater driver aggression and reckless motoring behavior.

Dr. Dibben went on to say that music was however better than silence or talk radio, and can help actually keep the driver attentive, and that singing along can actually help keep eyes on the road.

In a separate study, Israeli researchers in 2002 concluded that drivers should stick to songs with similar beats per minute (BPM) to their heart. For example, if a heart beats 60 BPM, and the tempo of a song beats 120 BPM, then the driver listening to that song is more likely to be reckless and increase in driving speed. On the other hand, music that is very slow can keep you from staying awake, the study suggests.

So what jazz might you avoid listening to, according to these studies?

Perhaps something like this?

I must admit, you would be hard to find a jazz song playing in my car that clocks in less than 180 BPM. I hope my insurance rates don’t go up.

Post-War R&B a Bridge for Jazz and Rock 'n' Roll

7 Jun

Here is a great discussion between KPLU’s Nick Morrison and Kirsten Kendrick.

Below is video and a transcript of the interview. To hear the audio from the interview, click here.

SEATTLE, WA (KPLU) – Without jazz, rock ‘n’ roll might have never happened. At least it wouldn’t have happened as it did. And the link between jazz and rock ‘n’ roll is post-World War II rhythm and blues. That’s the viewpoint of KPLU’s Nick Morrison. He compiled a list of the most influential post-war R&B songs and he shared them with KPLU’s Kirsten Kendrick.

Nick: The other day, I was talking to a person who was a jazz performer in the 1950s. And like a lot of jazz performers from the 1950s, this person said “you know when rock ‘n’ roll came along, that was the death of jazz as popular music.”

And I thought, okay, that’s true enough, but it’s equally true to say that without jazz rock n’ roll wouldn’t have evolved in the way that it did. And the link between jazz and rock n’ roll is post-war rhythm and blues because many of the post-war rhythm and blues singers cut their teeth in big band jazz music.

Kirsten: And who’s the first person that we’re going to be listening to?

Nick: Well, the first person is the guy who I think is the best example of that, and that is Louis Jordan. Louis Jordan did some great rhythm and blues stuff. In the 30s, he was working in a big band led by Chick Webb – one of the best big bands going. And I guess there was a falling out between Chick Webb and Louis Jordan and he started following his own path. And so, the song that I want to start with is something that he recorded in 1945 and when you listen to this, pay special attention to the opening guitar lick. You’ll recognize it as something that Chuck Berry did. This was recorded 10 years before Chuck Berry ever did it.

Song: Louis Jordan – Ain’t That Just Like a Woman

Kirsten: I did recognize that guitar lick. That’s Johnny B. Goode.

Nick: Good for you, good for you. (laugh)

Song: Chuck Berry – Johnny B. Goode

Nick: The next song we’re going to listen to is Roy Brown doing “Good Rockin’ Tonight.” This was recorded a couple of years after the Louis Jordan song that we just heard. And a lot of people would consider this song to be the first rock n’ roll song ever recorded. Of course, that point will be debated for ever and ever.

One thing about this song is that I think it makes very clear the difference between the Tin Pan Alley jazz big band recordings and the big band recordings that were going on with post-war rhythm and blues – just in the fact that they talk about sex a little more explicitly. The old “Making Whoopee” that Eddie Cantor did in the late 20s when Roy Brown is singing about making whoopee, he’s singing I’m gonna hold my baby tight as I can, tonight she’ll know I’m a mighty, mighty man.’ A little earthier, a little more to the point. You’ll see, listen.

Song: Roy Brown – Good Rockin’ Tonight

Kirsten: The third artists we’re going to listen to from your list, Nick, is Wynonie Harris.

Nick: He came out of the big band era. He was a singer with Lucky Milander’s big band for a long time before he went out on his own. And we were talking about the earthiness of the euphemism a little bit earlier with Mr. Brown Wynonie Harris was famous for being raunchy. We’re going to hear one of his less raunchy numbers. This is called All She Wants to do is Rock.’

Song: Wynonie Harris – All She Wants to do is Rock

Kirsten: So Nick, how does all of this add up to rock n’ roll?

Nick: Well, rock n’ roll is basically a fusion of a black sensibility and a white sensibility. That’s the way I think of it. And, with post-war R&B, you had a thread of, basically, blues that was pulled from rural blues through jazz into post-war R&B and these songs became popular on juke boxes and although these were black artists recording for a predominantly black audience, there were a lot of white music lovers that picked up on this as well and, of course, a lot of musicians. This is the music and Elvis Presley and Chuck Berry listened to. And, when, say, Elvis Presley took his influences from post-war R&B and his influences from white country music and put those together – bingo, rock n’ roll.

Song: Elvis Presley – Good Rockin’ Tonight

Nick Morrison’s Post-War R&B Songs

Artist Song Album Cover
(Links to Amazon)
Louis Jordan Ain’t That Just Like a Woman Number Ones
Roy Brown Good Rockin’ Tonight Greatest Hits
Roy Milton Hop, Skip & Jump Specialty Profiles (2 Disc)
Wynonie Harris All She Wants to Do is Rock Very Best of Wynonie Harris: Good Rockin’ Tonight
Pearl Bailey and “Hot Lips” Page Hucklebuck 16 Most Requested Songs
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