Thursday, December 31, 2020
Max Roach Plays Hollywood
Monday, December 28, 2020
Tim Mah's Recommended Canadian Jazz Albums of 2020
Tim's weekly radio program Jazz Today can be heard on CJSW Radio 90.9 fm (Calgary, Alberta, Canada) on Thursday mornings from 530-7am MST. It is also streamed on the CJSW website and available through Apple Podcasts.
Next week Tim will be offering his third and final instalment, a list of recommended international jazz releases from 2020.
Here is a list of more Canadian artists with 2020 releases that you can check out:
Alex Moxon Quartet “Alex Moxon Quartet”
Alvaro Rojas “Gran Kasa”
Angela Turone & Chris Platt “Sounds of Brazil”
Audrey Ochoa “Frankenhorn”
Claire Devlin Quartet “Anyone”
Diana Krall “This Dream of You”
Evan Shay “New Normal”
François Houle “Recoder” and “Vortex” (with the ITACA 4et - Nicola Fazzini, Alessandro Fedrigo and Nick Fraser)
Gillian Margot “Power Flower”
Gordon Grdina “Nomad,” “Resist,” Safar-e-Daroon,” and “Prior Street”
Harrison Squared “Trout in Swimwear”
Jean-Michel Leblanc “Varietes Narratives”
Jen Hodge All Stars “The Girl in the Groove”
Jerry Granelli Trio “The Jerry Granelli Trio Plays Vince Guraldi and Mose Allison”
Jocelyn Gould “Elegant Traveler”
John Stetch “Blue Canada”
Koffman Hiltz Quartet “Mumbo Jumbo”
Larnell Lewis “Relive the Moment”
Local Talent (James Hill, Rich Brown and Ian Wright) “Higienopolis”
Marika Galea ‘Nuance”
Mark Segger Sextet “Liftoff”
The Nimmons Tribute “To the Nth”
Pat Collins Trio (feat. Reg Schwager & Tom Szczesniak) “Time Well Spent”
Patrick Boyle “Swivel”
Petr Cancura “Another Way Home (feat. Kenny Wollesen, Tony Scherr & Rob Jost),” “Life is a Gong Show (with the group Songs of Tales - Jean Martin, Jesse Zubot, Gordon Grdina)” and “Don’t Let It Stop (feat. Charlie Hunter & Geoff Clapp)
Pulsart Trio “Swing Theory – EP”
Rob Clutton “Offering” and “Counsel of Primaries”
Sarah Rossy “The Conclusion”
Ways (Brodie West and Evan Cartwright) + Simon Toldam “Fortunes”
Will Bonness “Change of Plans”
Saturday, December 26, 2020
Four on the Floor *Live* on Instagram IGTV featuring CJSW's Tim Mah
Please join us for our next episode happening this Tuesday, December 29th at 7pm MST (9pm EST), appearing on Instagram Live @fouronthfloorblog featuring Tim Mah, host of CJSW's radio program Jazz Today.
We will be discussing Tim's upcoming list of album releases by Canadian jazz artists from the past year.
Tim's radio program Jazz Today can be heard on CJSW Radio 90.9 fm (Calgary, Alberta, Canada) on Thursday mornings from 530-7am MST and it is also streamed on the CJSW website (and available through Apple Podcasts).
Thursday, December 24, 2020
Joe Farnsworth - Learn to Play from Bud Powell and Charlie Parker
Joe Farnsworth is back with more great wisdom, this time with comping ideas inspired by the phrasing and genius of Bud Powell and Charlie Parker:
Monday, December 21, 2020
Tim Mah's Recommended Drummer-Led Albums of 2020 (Part Two!)
Tim's radio program Jazz Today can be heard on CJSW Radio 90.9 fm (Calgary, Alberta, Canada) on Thursday mornings at 530am.
Sunday, December 20, 2020
Four on the Floor *Live* on Instagram IGTV featuring Dave Laing!
Within a couple of years he began to play on the local scene including appearances at the storied Montreal jazz club, Bar 2080, performing with such visiting artists as Clifford Jordan, Jimmy Heath, Junior Cook, Frank Wess, "Big" John Patton, J.R. Montrose, Fraser McPherson and many others. At that time he also began associations with such local luminaries as Andre White, Kevin Dean, Ranee Lee, Remi Bolduc, and Geoff Lapp that would continue over the coming years. He relocated to Toronto for a brief period and performed with many of the leading players there including Ed Bickert, Don Thompson, Lorne Lofsky, Pat Labarbera, Reg Schwager and Guido Basso.
Upon returning to Montreal, Dave continued to solidify his position as one of Canada's most in-demand musicians appearing on over 60 CD's to date. His performing credits include working with such artists such as Denzal Sinclaire, the Joe Sullivan Big Band, Barry Harris, Mark Murphy, Lage Lund, Danilo Perez, Jim McNeely, Dave Leibman, Benny Golson, Slide Hampton, Jon Ballantyne, Mulgrew Miller, John Stetch, the National Arts Centre Orchestra, Kevin Turcotte, Peter Leitch, Ben Monder, Kenny Werner, Jerry Bergonzi, PJ Perry, George Garzone, Oliver Jones, Shelia Jordan and many more. He has travelled the world performing music including such diverse places as China, Brazil, Israel, Mexico, the United States, Europe, and across Canada.
Dave has also been heavily involved in music education for the past 30 years. He was a member of the McGill University music faculty since 1990, teaching private students and ensembles. He also taught lecture courses in Jazz History and Jazz Appreciation. Dave was recently appointed the head of drums and percussion at Grant MacEwan University.
Thursday, December 17, 2020
Interview with Russ Gleason - Drum Hangs
1) Tell us all about Drum Hangs! What is it all about?
Was it a steep learning curve in terms of learning how to use the technology?
Since starting Drum Hangs, I’ve been asked a lot about my studies with Jim Blackley. In my early twenties, I was studying with Allan Cox who is a fantastic player, educator, and he also created the ‘Meet the Bass Player’ play-along series which has been so successful and helped many players & teachers around the world. I worked so hard on Jim Blackley’s material whilst studying with Allan, and one day during a lesson he said to me “you should go and study with Jim”. I looked at him and thought “is that possible? could I really do that?” He assured me that it’d be great and more importantly, life-changing. He was correct!
Tuesday, December 15, 2020
Four on the Floor *Live* on Instagram IGTV featuring Chris Smith
Monday, December 14, 2020
Max Roach - Torino 1994
Thursday, December 10, 2020
The Return of the Four-Limbed Monster!
Further to my post from last week, here's a few more comping exercises in the same spirit as the ones I shared before (btw the fellow above was not impressed that Mr. Octopus got all the attention last time, so here he is to set us straight...and if you haven't checked out "4-Way Coordination" by Dahlgren & Fine, you should!)
As with my previous exercises, I find these really help with my sense of balance while developing 4-limb coordination.
Play both of these exercises with the standard ride cymbal rhythm over top.
As before, these are a series of syncopated figures organized in three-beat phrases that create an over-the-bar-line loop.
Play it slow.
Balance the limbs dynamically.
Use a metronome.
Relax and strive for a sense of flow.
Make it swing!
* If you have any questions please let me know!*
Monday, December 7, 2020
The Monday Morning Paradiddle - December 2020
I've got a few more technique exercises to post in the weeks ahead and frequent guest columnist Tim Mah (of CJSW's award-winning radio program Jazz Today) will once again be offering his choice of this year's jazz releases by Canadian artists and great jazz drummers from around the world.
I am also going to attempt a little social media experiment in the coming weeks ahead called *Four on the Floor Live* and will be hosting informal interviews on a weekly basis with several jazz drumming social media personalities via my Instagram page @fouronthefloorblog. So keep an eye out for future announcements.
*Also, please don't forget to subscribe to my mailing list on the right hand side of the page to receive regular updates whenever I publish a new blog post. Don't miss out and get Four on the Floor delivered straight to your inbox!*
1. Jazz drumming great Billy Drummond's feature in Not So Modern Drummer magazine.
And here's an amazing solo of Billy's from a hit at Small's on Bobby Hutcherson's "Little B's Poem":
2. Montreal's Michel Lambert featured via La Gazette Bleue d'Action Jazz
3. A repeat episode from 2015, but an inspiring and motivating interview none-the-less with John Riley from the Drummer's Resource Podcast
4. Jazz Times magazine's Bright Moments with the great Andrew Cyrille
5. Brian Blade's Artist's Choice, also from Jazz Times
6. Billy Martin interviews the Grateful Dead's Bill Kreutzmann and Mickey Hart
7. Peter Erskine has been sharing a great on-going list of influential drummers via Facebook lately. Here's a link to his Infinity Drummers Playlist via Google Docs
8. Rhythm guru Russell Hartenberger interviews the late John Wyre via the Nexus percussion website
9. I recently attended a wonderful Zoom masterclass with Ra Kalam Bob Moses last Saturday morning and was inspired by his explanations and ear-opening concepts such as "Living Music"(ie. singing and dancing!) and internalizing resolution points. I really took a lot away from this session and I'd also like to extend a big shout-out to Clifford Koufman for putting this together!
Here's a brief clip of Ra Kalam improvising, using Hemp Tempo mallets:
10. I also attended an incredible zoom session with Bill Stewart last week, courtesy of Russ Gleason and the fine folks over at Drum Hangs (check this site out!) It was a really great opportunity to hear Bill talk about his process, influences, ride cymbal technique, etc. and a tremendous insight into his musical mind.
Here's a great piece featuring Bill with the Blue Note All-Stars circa. 1996:
11. Open Studio recently featured Ulysses Owens Jr. and Greg Hutchinson in this livestream "Finding Your Beat":
And Edu Ribeiro continues with his excellent Drum Conversations YouTube series. Here is Edu's interview with drummer/vibraphonist Jason Marsalis:
12. Peter Apfelbaum and Mark Guiliana in a creative duet:
13. Check out this absolutely killing solo from Jack DeJohnette!
14. I thought this was interesting: tabla virtuoso Zakir Hussain playing Steve Smith's drums during a soundcheck:
Yep, he's got it!
And here's Zakir in his usual element with a tabla solo from the Berklee College of Music:
15. Steve Fidyk offers this uptempo brushes demonstration:
16. Larnell Lewis with his composition "The Forgotten Ones":
17. Swiss jazz drumming great Daniel Humair in a 1961 solo spot:
18. Very rare footage of Canadian drummer Claude Ranger, playing here with Edmonton's PJ Perry, recorded during the early 1990s:
19. Looking for something to practice? Play along with these guys!!!
Thank you Mr. Carter and Christian McBride for sharing these!
20. I distinctly remember when I bought my reissued CD copy of Gretsch Drum Night at Birdland twenty five years ago at the HMV located in Regina's Southland Mall, featuring Art Blakey, Elvin Jones, Charli Persip and Philly Joe Jones. Here's Philly's incredible brush solo feature from this epic drum summit:
21. What am I listening to these days?
Andrew Cyrille & Bill McHenry "Proximity" - Andrew Cyrille (drums)
Beaver Harris "African Drums" - Beaver Harris (drums)
Quincy Davis "Q Vision" - Quincy Davis (drums)
Dizzy Gillespie with Sonny Stitt & Sonny Rollins "Duets" - Charli Persip (drums)
Gerry Gibbs, Kenny Barron & Ron Carter "Thrasher Dream Trio" - Gerry Gibbs (drums)
Tony Willians "Young at Heart" - Tony Williams (drums)
Bobby Wiens "Talking Drums" - Bobby Wiens (drums)
Steve Reich "Drumming"
22. And today's Final Word(s) go to...
...veteran Toronto bassist Dave Young with these words of wisdom in this wonderfully written piece from the CBC entitled 9 Valuable Lessons I've Learned During my Life in Jazz
...and to conclude this week's column, a short film narrated by the late Neil Peart: