Monday, January 17, 2011
Le Paradiddle du Lundi Matin
(just a little shout out there to all my faithful readers in Quebec, St. Pierre & Miquelon, Corsica and French Guyana...merci!)
-As drummers, our most important ally on the bandstand is the bass player. It's also hard to think of how hard a great drummer swings without thinking of the bass player they are playing with! The two go hand in hand. Just think of all the great drummer + bass player combinations who have played together over the course of Jazz history and you'll know why.
I've been very fortunate to have played with many outstanding bass players over the years and each of them have taught me, in some way or another, the meaning of swing.
A few of these fine bassists that I'm indebted to include:
Rob Hutchinson, Carlo Petrovitch, Peter Dyksman, Sage Reynolds, Derek Shirley, Dave Watts, Jodi Proznick, Tommy Babbins, Alec Walkington, Michel Donato, Rufus Reid, Don Thompson, Solon McDade, Charlie Biddle, Ron Seguin, Rob Fahie, Adam Over, Jim Vivian, Zack Lober, Brian Hurley, Karine Chapdelaine, Dennis Irwin, Ben Allison, Mike Downes, John Clayton, Kieran Overs, Kristin Korb, Tim Harley, John Taylor, Aryeh Korbrinksy, John Hyde, Rubim De Toledo, Johannes Weidenmueller, Miles Perkin, John Patitucci, Fraser Hollins, Stefano Valdo, Andrew Downing, Chris Jennings, Ricardo Del Fra, Sean Cronin and many others...
Furthermore, I think it's worth spending some time studying great bass players just as we study great drummers (I have my old teacher Chris McCann to thank for this insight. He once asked me to describe and compare the differences between Ray Brown, Sam Jones and George Tucker! Whoa...I didn't have a clue.)
A few great bass resources that I've been checking out lately to that effect:
"Charles Mingus: More Than A Fakebook" by Andrew Homzy
Probably the most definitive resource on the music of Charles Mingus out there.
"The Jazz Bass Book" by John Goldsby
This book is an amazing overview of Jazz bass from both a historical and technical perspective.
"The Evolving Bassist" by Rufus Reid DVD
This is a great bass lesson but dig the great trio playing with Lewis Nash and Mulgrew Miller as well !
-To finish today's posts here's a real gem to enjoy. Trumpeter and visionary Dave Douglas contributed this footage to his blog. Here's the great Duke Ellington and his orchestra performing "Isfahan" from the Far East Suite featuring Johnny Hodges on alto saxophone:
And while we're on the topic of Duke Ellington, this one never fails to inspire me...