Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Music Other Than Jazz

I have A LOT of unread stuff in my RSS reader.

One of the subscriptions I try to read regularly is The Atlanic's culture feed, on which I found this this morning. I had not heard of John Vanderslice previous to today and I have full intentions of making Pixel Revolt my next iTunes purchase. It did get me to thinking, though...how much music do I miss by being SO focused on jazz all of the time. I understand the current trend of jazz musicians taking current material as their source material, but most of my listening remains focused on the perfecters of the art, i.e. Joe Henderson, Trane, Wayne, and Sonny. Additionally, most of the "modern" folks I listen to are steeped in that language as well. The modern guy I'm listening to most these days is Rich Perry.

But, the purpose of this post is not to debate the artistic merit of old vs. new or jazz vs. everything else. My discovery of John Vanderslice today was a joyful one to be sure. It reminded me of how much other music is out there that I love. For instance, REM and U2. I have some stuff from these folks on my workout playlists and every time they come up I remember how much I love that music. The Decemberists are another example.

How about it: what music other than your "favorite" inspires you?

I should read the stuff in my RSS reader more often...

Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy and Merry...

Jazz Advice

Jazz Advice is the kind of website that I think the internet was made for. A wealth of good information from folks who know and it is interactive. You can pose questions to the hosts and they will address them with an article. I've just begun to dig into some of the stuff on the site and it is just great information. A most helpful tool.

I came across this website through Eddie Rich's blog. Eddie is a great saxophone player and you should really seek out some of his stuff. Thanks Eddie, for turning us on to this great site!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Surface Structure vs. Deep Structure Part III

Back to the discussion of Surface vs. Deep Structure in improvisation...

In the last entry, I discussed distilling a transcribed line down to its essential construction. Shown below are the original line and one solution for its "Deep Structure".


Deep Structure:

Using this raw material one can quickly see that the Deep Structure for this line involves using an Eb Major triad over the Fmin7 chord and an E9 chord over the Bb7. Both of these are quite standard superimpositions, the Eb Major outlining the upper structure of the Fmin7 and the E7 being a tri-tone substitution for the Bb7. Using this schema as our roadmap, the next step is to compose our own lines based on Warne's Deep Structure.

Some solutions follow:

As we develop more material from Warne's Deep Structure, each of the lines developed should be taken through the transformative processes discussed in the previous post.

For a very comprehensive discussion of the pedagogical value and use of transcription as well as a recommended list of solos to transcribe, I recommend this article from Dave Liebman's website as well as his video: "An Improviser's Guide to Transcription" (available through Caris Music Services). Both of these references, as well as my experiences studying with Dave have helped to solidify my thoughts on transcription and informed many of the processes described here.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

All praise Mulgrew!

Haven't been around much lately...school's back in session. I came across the video below and had to share it. Such sage advice. More deep structure coming...I promise!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Sunday Video

Here is a link to a great link to an interview with saxophonist Walt Weiskopf. Walt is a great modern player whose ideas about hexatonics/triad pairs are very well known in the Jazz Education world.

Here's a video of Walt's sextet:

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Thoughts on book burnings

Please permit me a brief step away from discussions of Deep Structure and Improvisation. Many will have heard of Pastor Terry Jones' plan to stage a Quran burning in Florida on September 11th. I wonder how our Founding Fathers would feel about this. Below is a transcription of some correspondence between the Touro Synagogue in Newport RI. Among the oldest Synagogues in the United States.

We as a Nation would do well to reflect on these words:

The letter from Moses Seixas to President George Washington:

To the President of the United States of America.
Permit the children of the stock of Abraham to approach you with the most cordial affection and esteem for your person and merits — and to join with our fellow citizens in welcoming you to NewPort. With pleasure we reflect on those days — those days of difficulty, and danger, when the God of Israel, who delivered David from the peril of the sword, — shielded Your head in the day of battle: — and we rejoice to think, that the same Spirit, who rested in the Bosom of the greatly beloved Daniel enabling him to preside over the Provinces of the Babylonish Empire, rests and ever will rest, upon you, enabling you to discharge the arduous duties of Chief Magistrate in these States. Deprived as we heretofore have been of the invaluable rights of free Citizens, we now with a deep sense of gratitude to the Almighty disposer of all events behold a Government, erected by the Majesty of the People — a Government, which to bigotry gives no sanction, to persecution no assistance — but generously affording to all Liberty of conscience, and immunities of Citizenship: — deeming every one, of whatever Nation, tongue, or language equal parts of the great governmental Machine: — This so ample and extensive Federal Union whose basis is Philanthropy, Mutual confidence and Public Virtue, we cannot but acknowledge to be the work of the Great God, who ruleth in the Armies of Heaven, and among the Inhabitants of the Earth, doing whatever seemeth him good. For all these Blessings of civil and religious liberty which we enjoy under an equal benign administration, we desire to send up our thanks to the Ancient of Days, the great preserver of Men — beseeching him, that the Angel who conducted our forefathers through the wilderness into the promised Land, may graciously conduct you through all the difficulties and dangers of this mortal life: — And, when, like Joshua full of days and full of honour, you are gathered to your Fathers, may you be admitted into the Heavenly Paradise to partake of the water of life, and the tree of immortality.
Done and Signed by order of the Hebrew Congregation in NewPort, Rhode Island August 17th 1790.
Moses Seixas, Warden

The letter from George Washington in response to Moses Seixas:

To the Hebrew Congregation in Newport Rhode Island.
While I receive, with much satisfaction, your Address replete with expressions of affection and esteem; I rejoice in the opportunity of assuring you, that I shall always retain a grateful remembrance of the cordial welcome I experienced in my visit to Newport, from all classes of Citizens. The reflection on the days of difficulty and danger which are past is rendered the more sweet, from a consciousness that they are succeeded by days of uncommon prosperity and security. If we have wisdom to make the best use of the advantages with which we are now favored, we cannot fail, under the just administration of a good Government, to become a great and happy people. The Citizens of the United States of America have a right to applaud themselves for having given to mankind examples of an enlarged and liberal policy: a policy worthy of imitation. All possess alike liberty of conscience and immunities of citizenship. It is now no more that toleration is spoken of, as if it was by the indulgence of one class of people, that another enjoyed the exercise of their inherent national gifts. For happily the Government of the United States, which gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance requires only that they who live under its protection should demean themselves as good citizens, in giving it on all occasions their effectual support. It would be inconsistent with the frankness of my character not to avow that I am pleased with your favorable opinion of my Administration, and fervent wishes for my felicity. May the children of the Stock of Abraham, who dwell in this land, continue to merit and enjoy the good will of the other Inhabitants; while every one shall sit in safety under his own vine and figtree, and there shall be none to make him afraid. May the father of all mercies scatter light and not darkness in our paths, and make us all in our several vocations useful here, and in his own due time and way everlastingly happy.
G. Washington

~ Emphasis mine...

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


Sonny Rollins turns 80 today! Happy Birthday, Newk!!!!!

See NPR's story here.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Surface Structure vs. Deep Structure Part II

In my previous post, I spoke a bit about surface structure and deep structure, their linguistic implications, and how they may apply to improvisational pedagogy. In this post, I'll share some examples of how I use these techniques in my own playing and teaching.

Dave Liebman says "Learn from the fathers, not the sons" and this is a hallmark in my study. Transcription serves as the point of entry for all of my study and the transcription I do is of "Primary Sources" - more about that later. We'll start with a Warne Marsh ii7 V7 line I recently transcribed:

This line constitutes a "surface structure" statement. Many would use take this line through all keys and begin to use it over similar harmonic progressions, much the same way we would quote a line of Frost or Shakespeare. It would function very well, and give us very usable vocabulary. There is, however, much more that can be mined from this line. By using a series of transformations, in this case all based on traditional "theme and variations" technique, we can develop much more vocabulary that is original but shares the same "deep structure" as Warne's original line. Here are some examples:

We see that after some rather basic transformations, we have 5 new surface structure statements that all share the deep structure of the original line. Each of these lines can then be practiced through keys and used as vocabulary for improvisation.

Our next step is to return to the original line and really isolate the deep structure. What is the essential construction of this line? What makes it work? One solution follows:

This deep structure now becomes the basis for development of more original material through the process of transformation as discussed above. The next post will go through that process.

It is clear that approaching vocabulary development this way can result in a much deeper well of material than we would have by simply learning and using Warne's line. The beautiful thing is that all newly developed material has Warne's material as its deep structure. Because of this, most transformations will retain the strength and logic of the original line.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Surface Structure vs. Deep Structure

I have been going between two different approaches in my practicing lately. The first is a very traditional approach to learning to improvise: learning pieces of vocabulary (licks), taking them through all keys, and inserting them over appropriate harmonic situations in tunes. The other is an approach that I first came across in Jerry Bergonzi's great book "Melodic Structures" and have seen amplified by Ed Saindon. In this method, a small cell of notes is drawn from the chord scale in use, permutations are practiced and this becomes the raw material for improvisation. The cells are then rhythm-ized, "edited" and the player is left with harmonically and rhythmic sound language.

I have always had a hard time with the first approach. I never feel that I am really deeply connected to the vocabulary when I approach it this way. Using vocabulary that I have learned this way always feels forced.

The second method resonates more deeply with me. It made sense as soon as I started using it, and I feel MUCH more in control of my improvisation as well as more creative.

I have read bits about Noam Chomsky's ideas about linguistics, specifically the ideas of surface structure and deep structure and I feel that these two approaches mirror, in a very general way, Chomsky's model.

The first method is the surface structure; you are learning the sentence and using it verbatim. The second method is the deep structure; you are learning the building blocks of the sentence, understanding the linguistic transformations that take place, and using those rules to create your own sentence.

In my next post, I will post some examples of the two methods.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Sound

I am listening to Stan Getz.

Any time I put one of his records on my first thought is "why do I EVER listen to anyone else?!?!" Getz often gets "sorted" into kind of a holdover from the swing era - nothing could be further from the truth. His playing in the 80s right up until he passed (my favorite period, by the way) is as rhythmically, harmonically and sonically advanced and adventurous as anyone but to me, and unlike other adventurous players, Getz steeped everything through a deep well of swing and taste.

One of my favorite things about Stan's playing is what I call the sense of inevitability that his lines have. A great example of this can be heard on "Stan's Blues" from the album "But Beautiful" recorded with Bill Evans. He takes several unaccompanied choruses and EVERYTHING, time, harmony and melody is so clear that as I listen to it, my reaction is that there could be no other choice. His lines are THAT definitive. That kind of clarity is what I strive for every day.

I think I'll be listening to Stan for a while...

Here's a nice clip of Getz with musical soul-mate Kenny Barron:

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Locals...

There is an interesting discussion going on over at A Blog Supreme dealing with "the great unknown" jazz artists. That is to say, the local cats on the scene who we don't see on the cover of Down Beat or hear at major festivals.

I've come across some VERY HEAVY local guys in my travels including the following, many of whom I've had the honor of collaborating and working with:

Hampton Roads, Virginia:

Jim Nesbit: Woodwinds
Eddie Williams: Saxophone
Roy Muth: Trumpet
Jackie Friend: Trumpet
Jimmy Masters: Bass
Chris Brydge: Bass
Howard Curtis (now in Austria): Drums
John Toomey: Piano

Naples Italy:

Giulio Martino: Saxophone
Tony Ronga: Bass

Chicago IL:

Jim Gailloreto: Saxophone
Ari Brown: Saxophone
Greg Fishman: Saxophone
Brad Wheeler: Saxophone
Karl Montzka: Piano
Eric Montzka: Drums
Dereck Polk: Bass
Tom Hipskind: Drums

Newport/Providence, RI:

Joe Parillo: Piano
Joe Potenza: Bass
Alex Chapman: Drums
Geno Rosati: Guitar

There are so many more, but these are some of my favorite folks to play with and listen to. We all know how important it is to support the local scene, who are some of the cats in your town?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

13 Years Ago...

I have been following saxophone player Christopher Braig's blog over the past week and it has me feeling very reflective and nostalgic. Chris just returned from attending David Liebman's Saxophone Masterclass. I was a student at this class in 1997 and reading about his experience has had me thinking.

To say that it was a profound experience would be an understatement. People throw the phrase "life-changing" around a lot these days but for me, Lieb's masterclass was exactly that. I had never before been in such close every-day contact with a master of the art. Coupled with the very no-nonsense, methodical, and logical pedagogy he preaches and practices, I came away with a very clear blueprint of what to deal with and how.

But here's the rub...

To date, I have done very little of it! Let me be clear, the processes and pedagogy I took away from Lieb still informs everything I practice, but there is so much more I feel like I should have done by now (more about that word should in a moment). As with any intense experience, it can be a bit of a crash-landing back into reality afterwards. The flame burns for a few weeks, a couple of precious months, and then the mundane-ness of life creeps back into your artistic space. I catch myself every now and then and try to re-energize by listening. It always works and I vow to start over and get it right.

This bit, the starting over, is the problem. I always feel that when I fall off the path, I must go back to square one. Often this is right, but I find myself practicing things that, for the most part I am quite comfortable with in the guise of "rebuilding the foundation".

I have been thinking about incorporating the Zen idea of "the beginner's mind" into my practice. Maybe not going to square one, but dealing with where I am in the open and accepting mind of the absolute beginner. Not as "something to get through..."

Now, about that word should...the conditional tense causes lots of problems for artists. It makes us question our work and doubt the moment. Lieb even speaks about it when he talks about practicing, here is an example.

Be honest, be open, be objective...figure out what is missing AND GO RIGHT THERE.

That is the last line of my notes from my week with Lieb 13 years ago. I have some thinking to do...

Monday, August 9, 2010

My friend Steven...

has put some very eloquent thoughts together on the current "Mosque in Manhattan" discussions. I really don't think I can add to what he so bravely states here.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Newport Jazz Festival 2010

As I write this I can still hear the muffled sounds of Chris Botti wafting over the bay from Ft. Adams into my living room. I am now relaxing after a marathon couple of days that I'll try to recount here...

What I Heard:
Darcy James Argue and the Secret Society
Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra
Chick Corea's "Freedom Band" with Roy Haynes, Kenny Garrett and Christian McBride
Anat Cohen
Ben Allison Band
Gretchen Parlato
and snippets of many others.

Also, as if the lineup on Saturday weren't enough, I trekked up to Acton to hear Jerry Bergonzi and Phil Grenadier on Saturday night.

What I (sadly) Did Not Hear:
Any real representation of the local New England scene.
Yes, there was a septet from the Berklee Global Jazz Institute on Saturday morning at 11:00, but in a region where a partial list of local cats includes:
Jerry Bergonzi
George Garzone
Hal Crook
Phil Grenadier
Greg Abate
Bruce Gertz
Rick DiMuzio
Jared Sims
The Fringe
and many many more, why no love for the local artists?

My only real frame of reference for big summer jazz festivals is the Chicago Jazz Festival in September. This has always taken place over several venues and stages (much like Newport), featured a great mix of local artists with national/international acts, even having a "local artist" stage for awhile (much unlike Newport), and was FREE (decidedly unlike the $75.00/day Newport festival).

Please let me be clear, the Newport Jazz Festival and George Wien is a blessing and an American institution. Consider the history: Duke's Crescendo and Diminuendo in Blue, Brubeck's many appearances, "Jazz on a Summer's Day" Trane's 1961 date...on and on. But, a festival that is considered to be the perfecter of the genre should, in this writer's opinion, do a bit more to support the "Blue Collar" jazz musicians who live and work in its shadow throughout the year.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Newport Up! 2010 Edition - Day 5

Tomorrow is the big day...here is a reprise of one of my favorite videos from the Newport Jazz Festival:

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Newport Up! 2010 Edition - Day 3

Some great footage of Duke's band in 1962:

Follow the link or watch below:

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Newport Up! 2010 Edition - Day 2

Here is a wonderful version of Sweet Georgia Brown by Anita O'Day.

For those of you reading on Facebook, follow this link

Monday, August 2, 2010

Newport Up! 2010 Edition

It's that time of year in New England...bright blue sky, sailboats, and miles of cars pouring into the city with exotic license plates like New York and Massachusetts...

The Newport Jazz Festival starts this Friday!!! I am especially looking forward to the performances by The Maria Schneider Orchestra and DJA's Secret Society. As I did last year, I will run up to the festival with videos of some of my favorite Newport moments: Here's a great bit from 1979, Brubeck with Bergonzi....

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

At Last!

It's no secret that I am a big fan of Dave Liebman. When I received his latest newsletter announcing that he has been awarded the NEA's 2011 Jazz Master award I was thrilled. Here is a link to Lieb's newsletter with the announcement and he speaks very eloquently about the award and the idea of being recognized by the country that created the music (he often garners many more accolades in Europe). To me, Lieb is a total inspiration. Absolute commitment to the art, more artistic courage than just about anyone I can think of, and an absolute dedication to teaching.

It is in this last area that I have had my closest relationship with him. Through studying with him, my own aesthetic solidified and I gained a very concrete path into researching and studying the saxophone and, more importantly, this music for which I will be forever grateful. Not to mention the spirit of brotherhood that he engenders. All who have studied with him will know what I mean. If you ever were his student, you are his family forever. Studying with Lieb really shaped my entire world view in a way few teachers do.

Congrats, Brother

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Wachet Auf!

A bit late on this as I've been recovering from a small surgical procedure, but the 2010 Newport Jazz Festival's program has been announced.

Highlights include both Darcy James Argue's Secret Society AND Maria Schneider's Orchestra.

A composer and arranger's dream...

Here's the entire line-up...contact me if you want to get coffee over that weekend...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Thinking of Michael...

My thoughts and listening have been dwelling on Michael Brecker of late. I was doing some study of Kenny Wheeler's composition recently and I pulled out Double Double You and ended up with tears in my eyes as I listened to Michael play. That led me through so much of his music that I haven't listened to for a while. 80/81, Three Quartets, Don't Try This At Home and many others. I still have a tough time with Pilgrimage. It's really tough for me to listen to that one...so many emotions are tied to it for me. The fact that I am so connected to Michael's music is a little funny in a way, I came to Brecker late (relatively speaking). I really never heard Brecker until I was in college, specifically the early 90s with Three Quartets. I grew up listening mainly to the "Big 4" of Trane, Wayne, Joe, and Sonny. About the only modern players I listened to were Branford and Lieb. I had heard of and about Michael, but I very naively "couldn't be bothered" to check him out in my high school days, ironic since learning of how close he and Lieb were and the esteem in which he still holds Michael. When I heard Three Quartets, it was one of those life changing moments. The sound, intensity, harmonic sophistication, everything just shattered my entire world. I never became a disciple the way some did, but I certainly checked him out whenever I could (I first heard him live with Paul Simon around that time). I remember doing my first Brecker Transcription (The Meaning of The Blues) in 1992 or 1993. It was during that exploration that I really started to see what all the fuss was about. He made everything sound so effortless that I was fooled into thinking the solo I was transcribing was much easier than it was.

Fast forward to 2007, I'm at IAJE when the word starts spreading around. The grief and sadness was palpable. I remember walking around and seeing all of my heroes absolutely stricken. An image that will stay with me forever was seeing Rick Margitza and Lieb sitting together with tears in their eyes the emptiest looks on their faces...so sad.

It goes without saying that Michael was a touchstone. He became an archetype of saxophone playing years ago and will continue to be one forever. I suppose that every sax player has a Brecker story. Here's mine: During the "Directions In Music" tour in 2002 or 2003, the group played at Ravinia in Chicago. My family and I went and had lawn seats. It was a typical outdoors summer concert, kids running around, people eating and drinking, a very pleasant, albeit slightly noisy evening. Michael did his solo version of Namia that night and over the course of the 10 minutes, the lawn got as quiet as I had EVER heard it. I like to tell people that even the crickets shut up!

That's what it was about his playing for me. Not the technique, sound or harmonic sophistication (although that is all great), but it was the way he could draw you in to what he was doing.

I miss him.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sunday Video and some quick thoughts

There was a time that saying: "He's a West Coast player" or "He's a real Chicago Tenor" meant something very specific in terms of style, vocabulary, sound etc. Something that I hear today in my contemporaries and even in my own playing is no sense of regional identity. It is probably quite naive to think in this age of global information that there could be such drastic stylistic differences. An apprentice saxophonist today living in Nebraska has equal access to music from all geographic areas of the US as well as internationally at the click of a mouse. This is a wonderful thing for both the student and the professional, but, I do miss being able to hear a player' geographic linage in his or her playing. Today it sounds like we have all listened to the same 25 records, which of course, we have. As we move through the three stages of artistic development (Imitation, Style, Innovation) I think it would do us well as artists to undertake a study of a historic regional style of playing that appeals to us. We'll be more historically grounded in as well as discover new sources for our own vocabulary.

In that light, our Sunday Video today, features a true Chicago Tenor that I grew up listening to and that I have had the honor of performing with a couple of times...Von Freeman.


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Sunday Video...

Some killin' Joe for your Sunday. The sound is a little fuzzy, but Joe's genius comes through. I may have to transcribe the initial statement of the melody! Enjoy...

Saturday, January 16, 2010

I can almost see the floor...

Since the new year, I have slowly been clearing the weeds away from this blog. It had gotten so overgrown from neglect and non-use that I was afraid I'd never get it back.

The past 4 months have been a huge shock to my system. Going to grad school full time and working full time is no joke! I will say that it was a great decision. I'm working toward some interesting goals and there are some potential opportunities out there that look really encouraging.

My study this semester has left me with a bit of an identity crisis, though. I am having a difficult time finding a center as far as who and what I want/need to study. I spent last semester dealing with Warne Marsh and that was quite rewarding in the final analysis, although a bit frustrating while I was in the middle of it. I am thinking of dealing with Joe Henderson next semester, I have been on a big binge of his playing for the last month and I really would like to try to absorb elements of his harmonic and rhythmic vocabulary.

The semester was extremely productive in terms of my writing. I completed an original piece for Jazz Orchestra entitled "Pablo's Return" that had a very successful premiere. I have to say, I'm happier with it than I've been with anything else I've written in recent memory. Once I get the recording back, I'll post it at my MySpace.

The horizon has some projects that I'm looking forward to. I'll be doing an independent study project on the Lydian Chromatic Concept. This is very exciting, I have wanted to dig into the Concept for years, but it always kept slipping off my list. I also will be doing a Duo Recital with the wonderful pianist Pamela Hines (she's also on my Quartet hit at Acton Jazz Cafe on February 19th - more on that soon).

Ahh...that's better. I can see more of the floor now...

Friday, January 15, 2010

My inner geek...

sometimes comes out. Click here if you need help getting going this morning....

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Quote of the day...

“This music, jazz music, has a discipline that comes from practice, that’s very good for life in itself.”

~ Muhal Richard Abrams at the 2010 NEA Jazz Masters Awards

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Is this the future?

My wife turned me on to this article in the NYT today.

I was pleased on several levels. As an ex-pat Chicagoan it is great to see some of the cats on that scene doing great things. But, on another level I am pleased to see the trend of musicians taking ownership for the scene continuing. I wrote in an earlier post about how musicians like Dave Douglas and Matt Otto are changing the paradigm from a "label-centric" jazz world to more of an "artist-centric" one. The idea of musicians owning and managing the performance space is a logical step in that continuum. It isn't really new, though. Tesser cites Ahmad Jamal owning a club as well as the AACM model. I would add Seventh Avenue South, the Greenwich Village club owned and operated by the Breckers in the 1970s as well as Free Life Communication, the artist's collective of the 70s that counted David Liebman, Michael and Randy Brecker, Steve Grossman, Dave Holland, Chick Corea, Don Grolnik, Richie Beirach and many more.

I think that we as artists have to move in this direction. As long as we continue to rely on outside entities such as club owners or record labels to provide venues for the exhibition of our art, there will always be a market influence on said art.

Business models like these above as well as self-distribution and places like AS220 in Providence, RI place the art first. It is our music, lets support each other in the presentation and distribution of it!

Go out and hear some local music. Buy art from local artists, buy a CD from a player at a gig. Find a local theater and see a play. Buy a book by a local author. Seek out local artists and support them.

We want to play, write, perform, show for you!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Matt Otto...

has a new book out.

If you are unfamiliar with Matt's playing, rectify the situation here. I have been loving his playing for just over a year now. He is one of the most organic improvisors I know of today as well as being one of the most generous.

The idea of an entire book on one particular scale (Harmonic Major) is very interesting. A quick look leads me to believe that there will be much to mine here.

Congrats, Matt...I'll be ordering one soon!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Something to start your year off right....

Hard to go wrong with Miles, Wayne, Tony, Herbie, and Ron...

Happy New Year, all...