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 Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-17 09:49
Attachment:  Sweet GA:BG.pdf (50k)

I am starting a thread open to anyone regarding all things pertaining to the jazz clarinet.

Have a look at my website and blog to get an idea of where I'm coming from. www.marksowlakis.com.

I am attaching a Benny Goodman Sweet Georgia Brown transcription I did, and the BG blog post on my website has a link to my Soundcloud site where you can find a clarinet quartet arrangement that features this solo and myself playing all the parts.

Any and all posts welcome.

Much more to come......Markos

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: richard smith 
Date:   2017-08-17 16:58

Artie Shaw autobiography. Must read.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-17 18:09

Hi Richard. If you are referring to Three Chords For Beauty's Sake by Tom Nolan, not only have I read it but I am preparing a blog post and using some material from it. I was able to visit the AS Archive at U of Arizona this past March and have a lot of material that I was able to look over and photograph while there.

And yes, as starting point for this thread, I am opening the debate again here.....

Benny or Artie?

Mark Sowlakis
www.marksowlakis.com

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-17 18:11

And as I said to Richard, as a starting point for this thread, I pose the question...

Benny or Artie?

Mark Sowlakis
<www.marksowlakis.com>



Post Edited (2017-09-13 22:16)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-17 18:36

Benny or Artie?

I'd have to say Johnny Dodds. ;^)>>>

If I only have a choice between Benny and Artie - I'd have to say early Benny (when he played with other groups), or later Artie.

My absolute favorite Benny solo is: Sheik of Araby with Red Nichols at the 1:26 mark - he is almost vocal-like.

In retrospect, I'm not sure I have any favorites - just favorite recordings...favorite performances. We live in a blessed age where we can listen to so much great stuff!

Cheers,
Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-17 19:18

Fuzz:

Dodds was as you know a huge influence on BG in Chicago.
I do prefer the early Benny as that was his most creative period.
Artie still sounds modern and relevant to me, and his influence on Buddy DeFranco is obvious.

Ok, you brought it up......how about a partial list of your favorite recordings....?

Here is a list of clarinetists that I am planning blog posts about.....if you have anyone to add I'd love to hear it......

Mark Sowlakis
www.marksowlakis.com

Great All Time Clarinetists in NO Particular Order

Kenny Davern
Tony Scott
Perry Robinson
Barney
Russell Procope
Jimmy H
Alvin Bat
John Carter
Vinny Golia
Sydney Bechet
Benny
Artie
Buddy
Eddie
Paulo Moura
Paquito
Aker Bilk
Bill Smith
Peter F
Ed Hall
John Glover
Matt Dariau
David Krakauer
Jimmy Guiffre

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-17 19:46

Markos,

I'll be away from the computer for several days...if the discussion is still going when I come back, I'll be sure to add to your list. (We've had a few such lists before...)

Quickly, I'd add Irving Fazola...but then again, I like the older stuff. ;^)>>>

If we're open to contemporary players of old jazz - there's a ton of them I'd add to the list.

Cheers, and I hope to see the discussion when I return.

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: saxlite 
Date:   2017-08-17 20:39

Benny played great clarinet. But, Artie did that plus writing fantastic arrangements such as Stardust and Moonglow and others that were and still are way ahead of their time. The reed section voicings still make me wonder how Artie thought them up. So, I give Artie the nod for being a far more complete musician ( and he married many very hot women, too! ).......
Jerry

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-17 21:07


Hot women aside, Artie was also a first call alto saxophonist in the studios in NYC before he became famous as a bandleader. I often think of Benny as more of a stylist, and a damn good one at that, but of Artie as more as you say a complete artist with a wider perspective on his music. The creativity is amazing, and it's really a shame he didn't continue to push his music forward. I wish there were another twenty years of his clarinet playing to enjoy......
Thanks Jerry for your comments........
Markos
www.marksowlakis.com

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-17 21:14

So let's get not too nerdy geeky here but please feel free if you are a jazz clarinet player to share your equipment preferences. I have found that what works for classical cats doesn't always work for me in a true jazz situation or B-way show band type setting......

I myself, while I own two very nice Buffet R-13's, one a Prestige, carry around daily my Yamaha plastic clarinet with a couple of Fobes delrin barrels, 64 and 65 mm. The clarinet has been equipped with cork pads and the spring tensions have all been dialed in, and it plays a little sharper and is not flat when temp's are cool. Frankly it sounds terrific as I've recorded on it, and my buddy Perry Robinson has one and he loves it too. I also have a couple of Fobes custom made mouthpieces that are a lot less resistant than what he usually makes. I think that's his 3L facing on there, and I usually find that Vandoren V12 #3's work just fine on them.......

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-08-18 00:39

Markos,

I'm shocked that I didn't see Pete Fountain's name in your list.


Unless his name is there as "Peter F"...



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-18 01:33

As a New Orleans native, I think Peter F would have to be Pete Fountain (though nobody ever called him Peter) and Alvin Bat must be Alvin Bastiste.
These two certainly belong on the list.

I like your approach to transcribing Benny Goodman--no fussy pedantic attempt to indicate the exact rhythm, just a clear approximation that the player will know how to convert to swing. Not sure, though, why the transcription includes 4 consecutive quarter note rests in a measure when a whole bar rest would do the job. [Whole bar rest: a black rectangle suspended from the second staff line from the top (the written D line in treble clef) http://www.musictheory.net/lessons/13.]

Good luck in your endeavor! Julian Bliss is telling everybody in his master classes that clarinetists should learn more about chords, jazz harmony, and improvisation, whether or not they plan to specialize in classic music. All clarinetists should know both their classical and jazz heritage. So your post is very timely.



Post Edited (2017-08-18 22:20)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: brycon 
Date:   2017-08-18 05:09

Nice transcription! Aside from Sidney Bechet and Artie Shaw, I don't listen to much jazz clarinet (and even with those dudes, I'm still a greenhorn). But I dug Benny's playing--beautiful tone and nice swing feel!

One thing I found interesting with his solo was the lack of chromaticism, especially in neighbor-notes and enclosures. As a bebop player, for example, I would have played an F# on the upbeat of beat 2 at m. 33. (I initially thought the written F natural was a mistake; after listening 3 times, though, I think it's correct.) Moreover, on the upbeat of beat 1 in m. 34 and 35, I'd again play F#s but F naturals later in the bar (I'd also play a D# over the G7 chord--that choice, however, is just an idiosyncrasy of bebop playing). With the Bb-G-A enclosures at m. 38 and 39, I'd play G#s, which are almost ingrained in my muscle memory for that type of line.

Anywho, I tried playing the opening phrases my way and BG's way. Because my ears aren't accustomed to the swing style of playing, I felt his note choices gave the impression of skating the changes (which is something I've often heard listening to Goodman's solos).

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Tony F 
Date:   2017-08-18 14:16

I'd add Monty Sunshine, Sid Phillips and Archie Semple to the list of notable jazz players.

Tony F.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-18 19:49

I have never heard of Monty Sid or Archie, I will see what I can search.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-18 19:58

Seabreeze. Of course I know what a whole rest is but sometimes the spacing of transcriptions is an issue, and in some programs those look awkward, so my personal preference is to do as I have. And I'm willing to bet Pete Fountain's mother called him Peter!!

Anyway, I found the rest of your post quite interesting. I am always surprised that most classical clarinetists don't have some curiosity about other styles of playing and types of music. And often, as I learned in grad school at Mannes, classical musicians just don't want to learn to use their ears to hear harmony, or understand it well enough to say, compose or arrange. You'd be surprised at the trouble grad students had taking very basic dictation of say two voices, bass and treble.

I go out of my way to train my students to hear and use their ears so they develop the trust that they need in their ability to hear and react.

By the way, I did get to spend some time with Alvin Batiste in New Orleans at the Clarinet Fest in 2001, he had his string quartet played which included him improvising in it. What an amazing and open minded guy he was. Now there was a guy that knew his way around jazz and classical equally well, and I suspect Jimmy Hamilton did as well......

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Tony F 
Date:   2017-08-18 20:58

Sid Phillips "Clarinet Cadenza"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AuLE3iB1wk4

Monty Sunshine "Hushabye"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pRREb9cHLQI

Archie Semple "I Cover the Waterfront"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-X9wqJR6RZU

Tony F.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-18 21:02

Thanks Tony......

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-18 21:11

Tony......
All three clips I very much enjoy and yes that is some very fine clarinet playing, and the Cadenza is a very cool piece of which I was unaware. Thanks for turning me on to that....

It does seem to me that their playing is all derivative to some degree from what was happening earlier in America, viewed through their own perspective.

That being said that is totally my kind of music, I will delve much deeper into that......soulful, melodic, sentimental.......ya, diggin' it......

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: sdr 
Date:   2017-08-18 21:37

Don't see Anat Cohen on your list! Really?!

-sdr

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-18 21:37

Fountain's mother called him "Pierre Dewey LaFontaine, Jr." with an emphasis on the "Jr."

Monty Sunshine had a big hit in England and America around 1956 when he recorded Bechet's Petite Fleur with the Chris Barber band. It was issued on a 45 rpm record that was playing all over the French Quarter for more than a year and promoted by all the record shops (almost as if he had been a local New Orleans musician). Used to be on juke boxes too, regularly alternating with Fats Domino's On Blueberry Hill.

Batiste was an original--steeped in old New Orleans jazz and classical (he played the Mozart Concerto in public and studied with Olando Tognozzi)--and in jazz always ahead of the curve. An inquiring and creative man, open and generous with his talents and time, he is still remembered with fondness and admiration.



Post Edited (2017-08-18 22:22)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-18 22:40

"Hey Junior, go practice you clarinet. Someday you'll amount to something."

OK, I'm amused by that......

SDR asking about Anat Cohen--while I regard her fairly highly, I'm not a fan of her nor Don Byron. I've heard them both a few times live and rightly or wrongly wasn't impressed. In fact I have heard both struggle thru basic repertoire more than once, and one time with Don he clearly was very sharp to the band and did nothing....Anat has made some nice recordings and is pretty versatile, to her credit. Byron's recordings I just can't listen to.....

I did forget Ken Peplowski, did I not? He is sure fantastic.....

Not sure if I have heard Petite Fleur by Monty Sunshine, I will dig that out. I've heard so many versions of that tune I can't keep them all straight.

So Seabreeze, what would you say are the definitive Bechet original tunes? Obviously Petite Fleur and I Remember When but are there a couple of more?

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Matt74 
Date:   2017-08-18 23:39

Thank you for posting the transcription!

Ear training: It's great you do this.

I've mentioned this before, so it will be short. Ear training should start with kids learning simple diatonic melodies. Instead, they wait until you get to college and then expect you to begin by transcribing random chromatic intevals and random chromatic chords of all qualities and in all inversions. The idea seems to be that playing by ear is an inexplicable gift, and you can either do it or not, so no real instruction is required.

Jazz education has changed a lot, but I still hear things like, "If you want to learn Jazz go out and transcribe records." The implication being that if you can't do that all at once, you might as well not even try playing Jazz. I'm sure that does not fairly characterize everyone, or even most, but I still see it and hear it a lot.

On the Classical side improvisation, which was once simply an essential part of making music, somehow became an illicit activity. In part I think this explains why some players, especially young ones, find it so mysterious and intimidating.

Basically we need to change two parts of our music culture.

1. We should dispense with the idea that playing by ear and improvising are unique gifts given only to a few, which you either have or do not have.

2. We need to see playing by ear and improvising as something that can be learned, and must be learned, not only so one can pick things up, or play Jazz, but as an essential and indespensible musical skill for all playing and listening.

Obviously not everyone will be able to play like Bach or Benny Goodman, but there is a lot of unrealized potential out there, even among fine musicians.

- Matthew Simington


Post Edited (2017-08-18 23:41)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-18 23:57

Bechet gives a lesson for the ages on how to play traditional New Orleans blues on the clarinet in his 1944 recording of "Blue Horizon." You can hear echoes of that in Pete Fountain's recording of "Tin Roof Blues" with Al Hirt from the late '50s, even though Pete's conscious models were Fazola and Goodman. https://www.Youtube.com/watch?v=tN2EurONieA.

Bechet seems to have written most of his songs while living in France. Or at least the songs attributed to him: "Les Oignons," "Promenade aux Champ Elysees," and "Petite Fleur," for instance. I don't know what a complete list would look like--probably worth researching.



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-19 00:41

I could not agree with Matt more.....spot on......

Seabreeze, I learned that solo by ear and wrote it out at one point many years ago, I will revisit that.

Yes I'd like to have as many Bechet tunes in my rep as possible. Thanks for the insight regarding Pete F; is there a book about him that you are aware of by any chance?

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-19 03:42

The only book length bio I know of Pete Fountain is "A Closer Walk: The Pete Fountain Story," published by Regnery around 1972, and now out of print but easily obtainable from Amazon and others. Probably ghost written (by Bill Neeley), it covers his New Orleans origin and his career up to that time pretty well. There's also "PETE," a Public Broadcasting System documentary from 1980 (in which the narrator actually calls him "Peter") that graphically presents some of the reality of what it means to be a working jazz player in the French Quarter of New Orleans. https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Pete+Fountain+PBS.

Details about Fountain's life also appear in the two-hour YouTube video of Fountain's funeral at St. Louis Cathedral. Lawrence Welk's son, for instance, (who originally recruited Fountain to play on Welk's TV show) confirms that Fountain played everything by ear on the show and never did develop the interest the bandleader dad had hoped he would to read the charts with the sax section.

Finally on the Clarinetbb search index are over 1200 hits about Fountain, including the mouthpiece and facing he played (copied from the crystal piece Fazola gave him that eventually broke) to all sorts of biographical trivia.



Post Edited (2017-08-19 06:30)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-19 04:18

Mr. Breeze. Thanks for your post. The PF funeral will be my evening entertainment tonight. Looks amazing. Also the book is on Amazon for $20. I'll let you know when it's been read!

I bumped into your posts about Bill Smith.....again I am working on a blog post about him but have you seen the Rachel Yoder NTexas Research Project paper she wrote.....really cool.....that guy is my hero. Met him at Clarinet Fest in 2001 in NOLA, he gave a masterclass/talk that was incredible.

I would like to pick your brain further about New Orleans Clarinet. Funny I thought I might meet some dudes on here that knew their stuff----appreciate it all very much, thanks to everyone. I'm really enjoying this and getting quite an education......

So Evan Christopher, is he the guy in NOLA these days?

If I wanted to take a trip down there who would be the guys I'd most like to hear clarinet-wise?

Lastly, where can I get some detailed info on Fazola?

Markos

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-08-19 07:04

A google search gives us a lot of information about Irving Fazola:

https://www.google.com/search?q=info+on+clarinetist+Fazola&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: ClarinetRobt 
Date:   2017-08-19 07:17

I don't know past places the ICA has held its convention, but it sounds like New Orelans needs to be placed on the list for the next time it's in the USA.
Perhaps we can get Doreen to play. The German players will love it.

I've already learned a lot of new names. Keep up the great work folks!

~Robert L Schwebel
Mthpc: Behn Vintage, Lig: Ishimori, Reed: Aria 4, Legere Euro Signature 3.75, Horns: Uebel Superior, Ridenour Lyrique

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-19 07:22

Bill Smith was artist in residence at Loyola University, New Orleans around 2009. He collaborated with John Reeks, bass cl. in the Louisiana Philharmonic and professor at Loyola, even composing a few things for bass clarinet. Dr. Michael White took Smith on a tour of New Orleans and showed him where all the jazz pioneers lived. I always liked Smith in the '50s when he was playing jazz cl. in the cool style, probably the most successful in finding the appropriate voice for the instrument therein. He's in that mode with Shelly Manne on the folk jazz album (Greensleeves) and the Concerto for Clarinet and Jazz Band. Yoder's analysis of the Five Pieces for Clarinet is good, showing how Smith uses tone rows.

Irving Fazola died young, around 36, from too much of the good life in New Orleans. Too much drinking, too much rich food. Fazola liked both Leon Rappolo and Jimmy Noone though he never sounded as ethereal as Rappolo or as technically flashy as Noone. Faz played Albert system clarinet with a crystal mouthpiece that enhanced his already very wide and mellow sound. His most famous recordings were with the Bobcats; he was chosen by Glen Miller to perform with the Miller Orchestra, but a personality conflict arose and he never reached prominence with them. For a brief period, some jazz fans were arguing that Faz might even be a better player than Benny or Artie, and he beat them out in a few polls. Faz was a great player in the New Orleans tradition and in early Swing, but I can't see him venturing with a band into the emerging streams of bop that both Benny and Artie did or really getting interested in performing classical music the way they did. Fountain was the most successful of players inspired by Faz and flexible enough to change his style to incorporate Goodman's rhythmic drive. But Fountain, like Faz, was uninterested in later jazz styles, and basically ignored bop, cool, and post bop, though some of his side men (like bassist Don Bagley) would occasionally introduce little hints of those styles into the performances. DeFranco, Scott, Baptiste, Bill Smith, Daniels, etc. represented an alien world into which he would not venture. In this, he was different from, say, Chuck Hedges, who could and did venture into these styles and others when he chose. Also, Fountain had little interest in playing the classical repertoire, though he did occasionally listen to classical players (mostly Kell). Fountain had the raw talent to learn any of these styles, had he ever been interested, but he never was. As he was fond of saying, he got his degrees in music at the conservatory of Bourbon St., and he was satisfied with that.

In New Orleans today, there are many players of merit. You can find traditional bands on Frenchman Street at the back of the Quarter, and as often as not, the clarinetists will be women--so it's gals and guys now, no longer just guys. Everybody knows Doreen Kitchens, who performs on Royal St. in front of the Rouse Grocery on weekends, plays great jazz, and puts on a fine show. On this list I think Fuzzy, the Marlborough Man, and a few others follow New Orleans Jazz clarinet more than I do. I know Fuzzy is really up on who's playing on Frenchman, and the Marlborough Man was mentored by Pete Fountain. At 74, I don't hit the clubs much, especially because I don't drink and am a health-conscious, low-fat vegan, in many ways culturally more at home someplace like Berkeley or Vancouver than New Orleans. I am not a jazz clarinetist, but I grew up immersed in Albert system clarinet and old time jazz players. It's in my blood, but I don't play that way and never wanted to. If I play jazz at all, it comes out more along the lines of Alvin Batiste when he was in his most third stream mode or derived from Latino music like Nestor Torres' flute. I am in New Orleans and New Orleans is in me, but I'm not really of New Orleans--if that makes any sense. I am completely out of place in strip joints or trying to eat cajun sausage and high cholesterol foods. I hope to make it to 100, and still be playing my own way, and encourage others to do the same, no matter where they were born or where they live.



Post Edited (2017-08-19 20:02)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-19 08:27

So Mr. Breeze, you just rattle this off the top of your head?

I wish you lived across the street from me, we'd be hanging out all night.

Although I hail from San Francisco, and was born in Santa Cruz, I know what you mean that culturally you relate to Berkeley; however the Bay Area is changing dramatically and I'm not convinced it's for the better. There is very little live music or live music venues here any more. I play a gig or two a month on average......

I just finished the PF funeral mass, very cool indeed.

Fuzzy and Marlborough Man will get some serious questions from me based on what you've said.....and I do get the sense that several of you guys know your stuff and am really happy to have a chance to interact. Bravo Maestro's.........

I am intrigued by your interest in the more modern guys. If we can somehow connect off list I'd like to send you a couple of my discs. If what you say is true I'd like you to hear what I've done with Perry Robinson, not too far out but basically getting him into a place where he can play both inside and outside equally well. I have some private stash Perry Robinson recordings that are amazing that he gave me, and a blindfold test I did with him w/ him talking about the Euro free jazz clarinet scene that he knows so much about. Amazing guy..........

When I come out to NOLA I will look you up.....

Thank you for your post. What a pleasure.....Markos

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-19 09:02

Markos,

If you can find your transcription of Bechet playing "Blue Horizon," you should post it here. It will be a lesson for us all, whether we want to copy him or not.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-08-19 10:31

seabreeze,

I just listened to Bechet playing "Blue Horizon"

I thoroughly enjoyed his playing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fNgYTkcPCZw

What an interesting thread!



Post Edited (2017-08-19 22:18)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: ned 
Date:   2017-08-21 09:53

All this talk of Sidney Bechet reminds me of this...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T55jrCbRpfE

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dibbs 
Date:   2017-08-21 16:14

Markos wrote:

> I have never heard of Monty Sid or Archie, I will see what I
> can search.


All Brits. You can add Tony Coe to that list.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Tony F 
Date:   2017-08-21 17:15

And Alex Welsh and Wally Fawkes.

Tony F.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-08-21 18:45

Tony Coe:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FGyqcav0Xm0&list=PLnrGuo4I6rZv6dawfoInTxcVwt5wcOnBQ

Walley Fawkes:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECoWhyltGBs

For sdr, Anat Cohen:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ia5yOtjhYj4

Monty Sunshine:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M39vbpPM5-4

Sid Phillips:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_bA1tYDB7JY

Archie Semple:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kKPg-3LrGLU

And now, compare Archie to Ian Boyter playing the same song:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3OEclxgOtOA



Post Edited (2017-08-21 22:13)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: AndyW 
Date:   2017-08-22 14:19

<<

Archie Semple:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kKPg-3LrGLU

And now, compare Archie to Ian Boyter playing the same song:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3OEclxgOtOA

>>

Dan

I had to smile seeing two Scottish jazz clarinettists on the thread.
There's not many of us.

-Andy-

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-23 08:18

Hello Markos!

I was away for longer than anticipated, but will try to throw some names your way off the top of my head before I forget to respond in this thread!

As for active favorite jazz clarinetists:
Tim Laughlin (Mainly New Orleans - loved to play in conjunction with Connie Jones until Connie's retirement)

Tom Fisher (Mainly New Orleans)

Dan Levinson (Mainly NY)

Dennis Lichtman (Mainly NY)

Jonathan Doyle (Mainly everywhere - Chicago, New Orleans, Austin, etc. - plays with The Fat Babies...sometimes with various groups in New Orleans such as Tuba Skinny and others)

Kim Cusak (Original Salty Dogs - Chicago...but my favorite performances of him are on youtube - listed as "The Festival Feetwarmers" with another reed extraordinaire, Anita Thomas.)

John Otto

Michael Magro (Founding member of The Loose Marbles - original group back in 2007 or so)

James Evans (Shotgun Jazz Band, New Orleans - pretty much any New Orleans band...he also plays modern jazz)

Craig Flory (New Orleans)

I'm sure there are several more that I've momentarily forgotten...if I can, I'll add them later.

I didn't see Sándor Benkó listed above either - I love his version of Petite Fleur!

Also - I thought Bechet wrote "Si tu vois ma mère"...but perhaps my memory fails me.

You'll note my interest is primarily early/pre-bop jazz. However, many of the names I listed are capable of crossing. Tim laughlin, James Evans, Johnathan Doyle, etc.

Cheers!
Fuzzy,

P.S.
I forgot two female clarinetists:
Chloe Feoranzo (New Orleans, New York, West Coast, etc.)
Aurora Nealand (New Orleans - primarily on sax, but good on clarinet too)

[Edit]
Two more thoughts:
Orange Kellin (especially when he plays with Steve Pistorius)
Lasse Collin

[2nd Edit]
The late Lester Bouchon (played some great clarinet with Sharkey Bonano)



Post Edited (2017-08-24 01:05)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-23 09:54

As Fuzzy says, Si Tu Vois Ma Mere is another one of Bechet's French title songs. Stretta has a nice collection of them here http://www.stretta-music.com/en/search/?searchparam=bechet+grans+succes, including Petite Fleur, Los Oignons, Dan Les Rues D'Antibes, Marchand De Poissons, Promenade Aux Champs Elysees, Si Tu Vois Ma Mere, As Tu Le Cafard, and Nous Deux.

Another French title he recorded (and composed?) not included here is Ce Mossieu Qui Parle. There must be many more. Bob Wilber would know them all, and so would French soprano saxophonist Olivier Franc who has just about the whole Bechet repertoire by heart (but maybe not all the clarinet performances?)



Post Edited (2017-08-24 18:12)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-24 09:11

Seabreeze,

Did Bob Wilber pass away? (So many of the jazz greats have been passing away, that I might have somehow missed this one.)

Bob is the reason I re-dedicated to play jazz as an adult. He was giving a speech (q&a) facilitated by Loren Schoenberg at the Stanley H. Kaplan penthouse (Lincoln Center) on December 10, 2002. The only reason I was there was due to the upcoming tribute to Benny Goodman which would occur a few days later. NYC was "new" to me at the time, and I was immersing myself into everything I could about the city.

At the end of the discussion, Bob got up, stepped off the platform, walked past me, put his clarinet together, and stood about three feet in front of me. From there, he played a couple tunes totally by himself. I had never heard such a beautiful tone come from a clarinet! I was thunderstruck. It was a life-changing moment for me. I don't remember how many people were in the room, but it was packed, and he filled the room with his sound. No mics needed, and the prettiest tone/sound I had ever heard. The crowd wasn't an easy crowd either - it was full of folks who had been in Benny's bands...they knew their stuff. He appeared totally unfazed by their presence. The room erupted in applause.

A lot of Bob's playing bypasses the areas/styles I enjoy listening to - but I will always be thankful to have been able to witness the gift he shared with all of us that night. Amazing stuff!

Cheers,
Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-08-24 10:30

fuzzy, according to Wikipedia, Bob Wilber is 89 and lives in New York.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bob_Wilber



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Clarineteer 
Date:   2017-08-24 13:15

Fuzzy,
Do you remember what brand clarinet Bob Wilbur played?

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-24 18:21

Dan,

Thanks for the fact check. I changed my text to read "Bob Wilber would know them all . . . ." Evidently he is alive and may still be playing; I fell victim to the logical fallacy "If I haven't heard him lately, and he's much older than me, therefore he must be dead." I last heard him perform with Wynton Marsallis in a Bechet tribute; that's on YouTube. In any case, as Fuzzy points out, Wilber is a clarinetist we should not forget--one of those musicians who can be a defining moment in our lives and make us want to return to (or go on) playing. Wilber crosses the line between New Orleans Jazz, Swing, and much later styles with admirable ease, showing once again, that music is music. When I first heard him, he was playing a Miles Davis tune. He is also certainly not a "doubler" but a true artist on both clarinet and sax.

Fuzzy, have you read John Chilton's book "Sidney Bechet: Wizard of Jazz." It follows the young Bechet all over New Orleans, as he learned to play the clarinet by ear and gained acceptance among the early ragtime, blues, and jazz players.



Post Edited (2017-08-24 18:42)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-24 19:17

Thanks, Dan - Another forum that I participate in is really good at posting such passings before the big sites catch up - so there's always the chance I missed something that others are aware of.

Clarineteer - Sorry, I didn't pay attention to clarinet brand...or if I did, I have since forgotten.

Seabreeze - I love your statement about Bob not being a doubler, that is so true! Also, thanks for the recommendation of the Chilton book. I'll have to get that. I have Bechet's autobiography - but like many of the old jazzmen autobiographies, it reads more like a fiction novel than a factual source (...have you read the Mezzrow autobiography? Hahaha!). Perhaps the Chilton book will provide the data I had been searching for when I read Bechet's autobiography.

"A Closer Walk" is definitely my favorite autobiography. It reads like a novel, but is believable. Seabreeze, you mentioned a possible ghost writer...was this common knowledge at the time? Charles Suhor indulged me a conversation in another forum, and had some interesting facts to share pertaining to personal interviews he had with Pete Fountain shortly after Pete's autobiography came out. I learned a couple of neat pieces of information from that interaction, which shed a slightly different light on a few topics from the book - and emphasized Pete's standing as an outstandingly great guy.

Warmest Regards,
Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-24 20:47

"A Closer Walk" is definitely the work of William Neeley, a novelist, journalist, and actor, and that book is sometimes listed as one of his published works even though the cover had Pete Fountain as the author. It was common knowledge that the book was more of an "as told to Neeley in conversations with Fountain" kind of production than a strict autobiography, though not formatted or marketed in that way.

Charles Suhor was more of a specialist in writing about jazz musicians and a great resource for his documentation of the growth of modern jazz in the Crescent City. Suhor would know more about the "beat on the street" details of the jazz life in the city than Neeley, whose interests were very far reaching, even into writing extensively on race car driving. Suhor was very interested in jazz education in the New Orleans school system.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-24 20:57

Seabreeze,

Thanks! That helps clarify things for me. The style of writing in the book seemed to indicate a pro had written it - but I was never sure if it was a ghost-writer, or a rather ambitious editor!

As always - you have provided me a lot of great information and insight! Thanks for sharing it!

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-24 20:57
Attachment:  Deep Purple_Buddy DeFranco.pdf (53k)

Great posts, I've been following although I've not posted for a while. I've learned so much here already.

I am putting up this transcription of Buddy DeFranco's Deep Purple that I did several years ago. Though it is mostly a melody statement there is some nice harmonic stuff in here, although I did not have a good set of changes for this tune at the time I did the work and subsequently it lacks chord changes. I hope to add those in the future when I upgrade the current computer and music related software. I love playing along with this in the morning as a warm up--BDF just plays so relaxed and beautifully here.

I look forward to investigating much of what's already on the thread, including the UK clarinetists----

Markos

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-24 21:21

Fuzzy,

The New Orleans jazz scene has always been weird and fascinating, like so many other things about this crazy city. Charles Suhor does a fine journalistic job of covering it in his "Jazz in New Orleans: The Postwar Years till 1970." Thomas W. Jacobsen in "Traditional New Orleans Jazz: Conversations with the Men Who Make the Music" offers a different perspective that includes such local clarinetists as Michael White, Evan Christopher, and Tom Fischer. The bittersweet attempts to teach jazz in local schools are followed by Al Kennedy's "Chord Changes on the Chalkboard: How Public School Teachers Shaped Jazz and Music in New Orleans." This one is a real eye-opener for many readers who naively suppose that jazz just falls from the sky like a force of nature. Jazz players are usually fervently looking for people to "school" them, and Collins in his Bechet biography, for instance, painstakingly shows how Bechet played hooky from one school to be educated in another when he chose to hang out with the best clarinet players he could find all over the city. Fountain spent many hours outside the doors of the places Fazola played, listening to and mimicking every note and phrase.

When people say music comes naturally to a certain player, they are only telling half the truth. What comes naturally is the desire to spend the countless hours of listening and practice time necessary to become a good player. The desire and aptitude are forces of nature (and specific human cultures) but the accomplishment of the goal is always time consuming and very hard work even for those gifted with talent--as it was for Bechet and Fountain and Artie Shaw.



Post Edited (2017-08-24 21:43)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-24 22:12

Seabreeze,

Thanks for the other book recommendations!

Tim Laughlin relates stories similar to Pete's - where Tim would actually sit outside the club to listen to Pete.

I know a handful of the kids trying to follow "trad" jazz in New Orleans. Even today they have a difficult time finding avenues into "trad". The older musicians all seem eager to embrace them, but the venues almost all prohibit kids. The good news is that three of the kids I know have "made it" in the scene down there...two playing their own regularly-scheduled gigs (now that they are the appropriate age to get into the clubs), and the other one is well into her music education in college.

I've heard tales from (and even experienced) kids currently growing up in New Orleans, being kicked out of some venue or another, only to stand in the doorway - just outside the venue - to play with the band.

There's a Trad Jazz Camp in New Orleans, and it offers scholarships for kids to attend the otherwise adults-only camp. It seems that many of the serious kids apply to attend NOCCA, but I think most of that education is centered around modern jazz...I've never been sure though.

Busking tends to be looked down upon by many "legit" players, but it's nice that it's out there where the kids can legally see/hear/participate.

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-25 00:28

NOCCA is a very selective admission school, requiring an individual audition and usually an impressive academic record. I tutor one NOCCA student, a musical theater major, who also attends regular high school full time, and after watching that student prepare for the musical "Titanic," I can attest to the intensity and dedication required by NOCCA. The classical music program at NOCCA, which Wynton Marsalis completed, was started by Bert Braud, a composer, arranger, and clarinetist who studied with Mitchell Lurie. The jazz studies program was founded by Wynton's father, Ellis, and has graduated such well-known players as Terence Blanchard, Nicholas Payton, and Trombone Shorty.

Ellis Marsalis's knowledge covers the entire history of jazz (he was Al Hirt's pianist and arranger for some time) but he prefers to play in the mainstream modern style, so it is no surprise that the students at NOCCA generally tend in that direction also--post bop but not often avant guarde. A trad specialist could emerge from NOCCA but offhand I can't think of one. Interestingly, Pete Fountain's friend Al Hirt was not only classically trained but also much more interested in modern jazz than Pete was. Though first impressed by Ziggy Elman (powerful trumpet with Goodman) and Harry James, Hirt genuinely enjoyed bop and post-bop styles, listened hard to Gillespie and Clifford Brown, often expressed admiration for West-Coast trumpeters Pete Condoli (who subbed for Hirt) and D. Fagerquist, and enjoyed playing "Lullaby of Birdland," "Pick Yourself Up," and other rather boppish pieces. Musicians still talk about the time that Woody Herman was in town to play the Bacchus carnival ball and his lead trumpet, Bill Chase, got sick. Hirt stepped in and sight read the difficult Chase parts, with no "Dixieland" stylistic intrusions at all, as if he had always been the Herman band's lead trumpet. I suspect the kind of training you get at NOCCA might lead to that kind of versatility also. (Hirt went to the Cincinnati Conservatory long before schools offered jazz programs and was taught by Frank Simon, who goes back to the Sousa and Herbert Clark days).

Hirt gave Wynton his first trumpet; in the small world of New Orleans Jazz, everything seems to go full circle.



Post Edited (2017-09-16 07:02)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-25 02:13

Thanks for the info on NOCCA!! I hadn't realized the Marsalis connection.

I find that many of the trad musicians I like the most can play across a wide spectrum of musical styles/eras. However, I've had a tough time finding those schooled first in modern jazz, to be able to play convincing early styles. It does, indeed, happen - but it seems much rarer than the other way around. (At least this is my perception.)

Up here in the high plains and front range...Even the "trad" bands sound "modern-trying-to-play-trad" compared with their coastal contemporaries. So much so, that I nearly put them into their own genre. I admire and support their efforts, but it just isn't quite the same music.

It must take a lot of talent to be able to lock one's own ear into a specific style, and then keep it in that style. Evan Christopher can do it. James Evans can do it. Yet - there's a totally different character (like Tim Laughlin, Connie Jones...maybe even Jack Teagarden) who can/could play their own true style, and have it fit within any spectrum they choose/chose without much varying. I really enjoy listening to those folks. ;^)>>>

Most really good jazz musicians seem to move freely from one style to another (at least within jazz). Some do it willingly between sets, some simply change and grow out of/into other styles over their lifetime. I remember someone on YouTube getting mad at me for saying Pete Fountain played great "trad" jazz. It was quickly pointed out that the other poster would "...never classify Pete as a player of trad or dixie!" I think the truth is that he was a player who could play trad, he could also play hokum, pop tunes, and a stylized contemporary jazz. Listening to the Basin Street Six, I just can't come to the conclusion he didn't play great "trad". To me, it seems that Pete could play whatever he wanted to play at any time - and that's what he spent his life doing - playing what he wanted to play, and to what audiences wanted to hear. As corny as "Candy Clarinet" is - that album is now my favorite Christmas album! I hear a lot of condescension (from time to time) aimed at Pete - but I have never felt it was warranted. ;^)>>>

I didn't know much about Al Hirt until I started following Pete's music back in high school. Al and Pete each seemed to ride on the pop music wave for a while...was that just the fashion of the 60s-70s era - for jazz musicians to play pop tunes?

(I didn't know that Al gave Wynton his first trumpet - what a hoot! Thanks for that tidbit!)

Fuzzy



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-25 02:56

Hirt used to tell the story that he was "talking trash" with Clarke Terry, Miles Davis, and Ellis Marsalis one day when Ellis asked him if he could get his boy Wynton a trumpet. Davis said the boy should learn another instrument because the trumpet was too hard, but Ellis persisted and Hirt said he could get him a Leblanc (the brand he played at the time) maybe at a discount (or maybe free). Anyway, Wynton got his first trumpet. As is always true in stories like that, it was a little different each time it was told. Wynton did verify that he got his first trumpet from Hirt and then went to George Jansen (who studied with William Vacchiano at Julliard) for private lessons and eventually enrolled at NOCCA in the music program. Ellis went on to direct the jazz studies program there and later become Coca Cola sponsored professor of jazz at the University of New Orleans.

Making all those horrid commercial records was of course the idea of
the musicians' agents and a way to support their families. The gigs Pete did in New Orleans didn't cover insurance or retirement, and at one time Hirt had a day job as a tech for a pest control company, Orkin, Inc. Hirt had six kids to feed. New Orleans grows entire crops of musicians but doesn't do much to financially support them. That's one reason Louis Armstrong lived in Queens, N.Y. instead. Alvin Batiste found a way to survive (but certainly not grow wealthy) by accepting teaching positions at Southern University and elsewhere, and he was a great teacher.

Batiste loved to step way out of character and genre when he was interested in the music, as when he appeared with a high energy fusion band with drummer Billy Cobham. It just happens that the bass player in that band was one of Batiste's many successful students. https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=alvin+batiste+fusion+jazz+festival. He only plays clarinet in the first part of the head arrangement before fading into the percussion section and a little inaudible bit at the end, but this appearance must be one of the few times that a clarinet tried to play any role in a guitar/percussion dominated fusion band and succeeded!

Batiste had this same fusion energy when he wrote for and directed the Southern University Jazz Band. Listen to their track "When God Gave Us a Song," (just next to the Billy Cobham one on the YouTube screen) and the equally amazing one "Tunjii," both recorded at at 1971 jazz festival. The contrast with the commercial work Hirt and Fountain were doing is stunning. If I may say so, Batiste was venturing into musical explorations where Eddie Daniels doesn't go even today and he was taking his clarinet along with him. He was changing his musical vocabulary to incorporate what he liked in players like Ornette Coleman and John Coltrane. Listen the clarinet work on Tunjii. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0moF1phE8Ck.



Post Edited (2017-08-25 10:44)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Late_returner 
Date:   2017-08-25 12:05

Great to have these transcriptions. Thanks a lot.
This makes me wonder if it would be possible to do a transcription of my all time favourite jazz clarinet : Johnny Dodd's opening and his chorus after the cornet to Perdido St Blues. And then there's the coda. This cannot be easy ( I also have less successful records by Bechet and Cy Laurie ) but I would love to try and don't have the skill to work out what's going on.
I have marvelled over this for 50 years so if you do try, thanks a million in advance

Roy



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-25 19:45
Attachment:  In A Mello Tone.pdf (85k)

Sir Late Returner, aka Roy.....I will take a listen at some point to the track you mentioned and see what it sounds like. I always like suggestions and find cool stuff to write out that way.

Yes it takes a while to learn the notation software, and you often have to make choices about how to notate things, and you can't always get everything to fit just right. It's a challenge, but over the course of several years I really got a lot better at transcribing. Sometimes I learn the solo by ear, using a slow down program, learning phrase by phrase. I then play it daily for weeks, then after completely absorbing it by ear, write it out. Although certainly many are done just phrase by phrase and writing constantly at the computer as well. However they come to fruition, it is a great ear straining exercise, and my composing was a natural reflection of my work on the computer learning to transcribe, so it's been really a long term plus and I encourage all my young students to get started with it as soon as they are able.....

I have done almost everything Art Pepper recorded on clarinet, I love Art's clarinet playing. I love Art and George Cables duo version of In A Mello Tone, so I'm including that here. If you keep an eye on my blog going forward there will be lots and lots of my transcriptions there sprinkled in with the blog posts of both clarinet and saxophone artists. This one is a little messy as I added the fours at the end, I have just the solo version as well but it's interesting to note the interplay of the fours at the end.....

Glad you liked it.....Markos
www.marksowlakis.com

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-25 20:07


And I would like to address Mr. Seabreeze......who's knowledge of all things NOLA has been a revelation to me......

I have been to NOLA five times, four times for Jazz Fest and once for the Clarinet Conference in 2001. Alvin Batiste has always been a favorite of mine, I think I have pretty much everything he ever recorded.....Alvin was so nice to me when I met him in 2001. I think I heard him every time I made a trip down.....As I said previously he was working on a string quartet which he played at the Conference, it was him and a string quartet, in which he had a bunch of improvisation mixed in for himself. He also did a gig that week at Snug's and played a version of that piece with his quartet.

So....

1. Did that ever get recorded or put out?
2. Are there Batiste clarinet students out there or anyone carrying on his tradition?

I bought something from him at the Conference he was selling called Developmental Routines for the Improvising Clarinetist Vol 3.....

Does anyone have copies of these and if so can they be found anywhere, or can any of his music be found anywhere? How many volumes are there? He was a brilliant thinker and incredibly visionary....

Thanks for your consideration......

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-25 23:05

Markos,

In response to your question of what has become of Alvin Batiste's writings and compositions, a few of them are in the Southern University John Cade Library in Baton Rouge, where he used to teach. The NOCCA library in New Orleans has ten of his recordings but, alas, none of his writings or music. Greg Agid, who studied clarinet with Batiste both at the Louis Armstrong "Satchmo" Summer Jazz Camp (on the grounds of the Old Mint on Esplanade Blvd) and at NOCCA, believes that Batiste may have taught as many as 300 musicians, some of them clarinetists. This would include Bradford Marsalis who does (or did) play clarinet as well as saxophone and was a member of the Southern University Jazz Band that Batiste directed. If you have a copy of improvisation studies that he wrote, hang on to it; I don't see those around any more! Some ambitious grad student looking for a research topic should undertake to survey all the music and study books that Batiste wrote (along with a complete discography) before they are irretrievably scattered to the winds.

Batiste did a program for NPR with pianist Billy Taylor that is remarkable. Batiste recounts how he learned jazz clarinet from Jimmy Hamilton and worked his way back to listening to Johnny Dodds, Big Eye Louis Nelson, and especially Sidney Bechet. He was impressed by Sony Stitt's ability on alto sax to play melodies directly crafted from the underlying harmonic structure of a song. Batiste developed this idea in some of his writings and worked with it in some tapes that the Harvard University Library Archives has called "Alvin Batiste and the Harvard Jazz Band: The Root Progression Process." Local radio station WWOZ certainly has some tapes of Batiste not available elsewhere.

Gregory Agid (who also studied clarinet with John Reeks of the LA Philharmonic and Eddie Daniels) is playing his next gig at Maison, 508 Frenchmen St, New Orleans, this Tuesday, Aug 29, if flood waters do not prevent him. He regularly performs at Snug Harbor as well.

The best link I can find to the Billy Taylor program with Batiste is this one which is marked "not secure," but I looked at it anyway.

https://npr.org/programs/btaylor/pastprograms/abatiste.html.

All this leads to a question for you. Do you think that any post-swing clarinetist improvises directly out of chord progressions as well as Sonny Stitt did on sax? Clarinetists seem disposed to "noodle" when they should be making melodic phrases or counterpoint over the changes. I heard Stitt many times live and on recordings, and never once did I hear him do anything like sax noodling. He was always shaping phrases whether they were banal or (more usually) brilliant. Does any modern clarinetist improvise meaningful phrases over changes as well as Paul Desmond ( to choose a player in some ways at the opposite end from Stitt) when Desmond was at his best? If yes, who? If no, why not?

I first thought about this when I read a review by Cannonball Adderley of a Tony Scott performance (maybe in a blindfold test?) Adderley said that people often accuse him (Adderley) of not developing the motives implicit in his improvisations, which he thought was not true. But he did note that Tony Scott completely failed to develop much in the performance he was listening to. As I recall, Adderley did not indite clarinetists in general because he was a fan of Artie Shaw's and thought (correctly) that Shaw developed all the elements inherent in the harmony and melodic line of "Stardust" in that famous recording. Shaw's solo there will stand comparison with anything Stitt or Desmond did in its structural integrity and musical interest. The same can be said, I think, for Bechet's on "Blue Horizon." He is far from noodling; he is speaking musical statements with authority. He is "laying down the law." (Think Beethoven, Mozart, Bach). So what about later jazz clarinetists?



Post Edited (2017-08-25 23:59)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-26 00:35

Seabreeze and Markos - do either of you guys listen to WWOZ in New Orleans? (wwoz.org to listen online and a two-week archive)

If so - what is your favorite program? (Of course, my favorites are the trad shows Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.)

Fuzzy

PS: forgot to ask...what do you think about Darnell Howard?



Post Edited (2017-08-26 00:38)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-26 00:46

Fuzz----I DO NOW!! Thanks for turning me on to that, blasting it right now here in SF!!

Seabreeze-thanks for the info, I knew about show with BT and AB, but have never heard it. I found I could download the .ram files and then converted them online to mp3, man I am licking my chops getting ready to listen to that tonight with a little Bourbon!

So Seabreeze, I am a huge Jimmy Hamilton fan. What are your definitive JH tunes or recordings, and what else can you tell me or point me to to learn more about him? I saw him once in NYC, long story but I was in a cab with a fine blonde and a slightly intoxicated Joe Henderson, yes that JoeHen, and the three of us went to Carlos One to hear Jimmy. Joe loved it, and we got to have a drink with Lou Donaldson who came right up to Joe and started chatting us up----I think it had something to do with my date! This was after a Lincoln Center gig before long Jazz At Lincoln Center had a rep band--the band did a bunch of Ellington including Such Sweet Thunder, and Jimmy did that gig and then ran downtown to do the club gig. Joe was on the gig playing lead tenor, I was studying with him at the time here in SF........

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-26 00:58

Members of this list made a great response to the theme of Jimmy Hamilton earlier this year. Lots of good input. Just do a Search (above) to read it.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-26 01:24

I can't quite figure out how to find the Hamilton stuff, can you steer me in the right direction? I searched Jimmy Hamilton but nothing came up, was it in a specific thread before?

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-26 01:33

When I type in Jimmy Hamilton (no quotation marks or other punctuation), in the Subject frame, 88 hits pop up, with Ruben's original posting opening the thread at the top. Not sure why you're having trouble.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-26 02:38

Do you mean the search woodwind.org at the top of this page or is there somewhere else to search? I can't find a Subject frame......

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-26 03:06

Yeah, Markos -

Just at the top of this conversation (or any conversation) there's a small text link for "search".

If you click on it, you'll get a window that lets you select which areas of the forums to search (I usually just leave "The Clarinet Bulletin Board" selected), and type in your search criteria in the "Look for" field. You can also choose to "Sort by" and select "Newest to Oldest" etc.

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-26 03:08

Right, you're probably not selecting the Clarinet Bulletin Board site. When you do, the links will pop up.



Post Edited (2017-08-26 03:10)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-26 03:47

I found it, thanks you guys....

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-26 04:14

Ok--hit paydirt in the Hamilton thread. The clarinet geek in me is flipping out over the dissertation by Thomas Reed on Procope and Hamilton........it's gonna be a long night.....

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-26 19:35

I put up a blog post this morning about Lester Young, including some short transcriptions of a couple clarinet solos. The blog on my website is intended to introduce junior high and high school students to the jazz world and improvising. As such the posts are intended to be relatively simple and easily understood, not to be comprehensive essays on the topic.

Please feel free to have a look.....Markos

http://marksowlakis.com/lester-young-president-saxophone/

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-26 21:07

Markos,

Are you familiar with Michael Steinman? He goes by the name "swingyoucats" on YouTube! He also hosts a jazzlives.wordpress.com blog. He goes around (mainly in NY, but travels extensively too) and records various groups - posting blogs and videos. (Many spectrums of jazz.)

Yesterday, I ran across a candid 2015 interview he did with Bob Wilber (in *four parts). In that interview, Bob mentions Lester's unique way of holding the tenor, and how it changed as the years went on. The entire interview was interesting to me - though I think it might have been an interview of opportunity given the lighting and questions/etc. Either way - I found it enjoyable. Here's a link to the Bob Wilber interview in case you're interested.

Fuzzy



Post Edited (2017-08-26 21:18)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-27 04:05

Thanks Fuzzy, I will take a look.....

Mr. Fuzz and Mr. Breeze, or anyone else for that matter....as I am working on a BBigard post for the blog, can I solicit your opinion(s) for your favorite BB trax or recordings? I have many but I'd like to so see what ya'll come up with.....and see if there's any consensus.......

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-27 05:55

A sampling of six:

Start with Barney Bigard and Jelly Roll Morton's 1929 recording of "Turtle Twist." The roots of New Orleans Jazz are clearly showing there; blues flowing like wine. https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=jelly=roll+morton+barney+bigard+turtle+trust.

"Mood Indigo" with Ellington from 1930 captures his mellow, velvety sound. https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=mood+indigo+duke+ellington+1930.

Then Bigard's short and sweet solo on Duke Ellington's 1936-1937 recording of "Caravan." https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Duke+Ellington+Caravan+1937.

To hear Bigard really stretch out, try "Tea for Two" with Red Allen, from 1943. https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=tea+for+two+bigard.

This is a stomping swinger that shows Bigard was listening to the swing bands and incorporating what he wanted from them.

From 1949, there are shades of Woody Herman (or was Herman shadowing Bigard?) to be found in Bigard's "Stompy Jones" and "Demi-Tass." https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=barney+Bigard+Stompy+Jones.

Back to 1936 for "Clarinet Lament" with Ellington, where you can hear some smooth downward glisses like only Bigard could do. https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=clarinet+lament+barney+bigard+duke+ellington.



Post Edited (2017-08-27 17:35)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-27 06:23

Tea for Two, Clouds in My Heart, Lament for Javanette, Rose Room, Diga Diga Doo...Sheesh - maybe it would be easier to choose some that aren't my favorites?

To be completely honest, I'm sure my choices are strongly influenced by the great groups and other soloists in some of those recordings. He played with a lot of other great musicians/groups. (Sorta weird how that almost happens with top-tier musicians.) ;^)>>>

Fuzzy

[Edit] I was going to post a quote, but then realized I had already posted it in a similar thread earlier this year. Thought you might enjoy that earlier conversation (ned, Marlboroughman, and a few others joined in that conversation too): http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=450747&t=450688



Post Edited (2017-08-27 06:25)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: John Morton 
Date:   2017-08-27 06:29

To Bigard, Dodds and Bechet, we must add all the other students of Lorenzo Tio, Jr., an important early teacher in New Orleans. Off the top of my head, that would be Jimmie Noone, Omer Simeon, Edmond Hall, Louis Cottrell, Albert Nicolas. The fact that these folks have not been mentioned reflects the widespread notion that jazz clarinet went directly from Bechet to Goodman.



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-27 06:33

Lorenzo Tio, Jr. is a superstar in my eyes - the sheer volume and quality that he produced is amazing! I even stayed in his old house one night (If I can believe the house's owner.) Any omissions from the list are (at least on my part) due to the conversation simply taking other twists and turns. No disrespect or insinuations meant towards the myriad of greats that haven't yet been mentioned in this thread.

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: John Morton 
Date:   2017-08-27 21:10





Post Edited (2017-09-05 06:20)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: John Morton 
Date:   2017-08-27 21:11

Fuzzy, thanks a bunch for your posts, and especially for pointing out the programming on WWOZ. Radio streams start to be really valuable when they are archived and playlisted.

Of course there are bound to be unintentional omissions from the discussion of this vast topic, and I was just casting a vote for the recognition of some favorites.
As a player I am drawn to the pre-WW II small group recordings, and from my reading I conclude that the artists of that era thought the most creative music came from small combos. You didn't turn your nose up at a steady salary from a touring big band, but for solo time and interplay and improv opportunities it was the small groups.

The Jimmie Noone groups often featured clarinet, alto and piano with rhythm, for an intriguing duet sound with no brasses. The John Kirby band ("The Biggest Little Band") distilled the sections of a big band into a sextet (clarinet was Buster Bailey):

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: John Morton 
Date:   2017-08-27 21:25

Fuzzy, thanks a bunch for your posts, and especially for pointing out the programming on WWOZ. Radio streams start to be really valuable when they are archived and playlisted.

Of course there are bound to be unintentional omissions from the discussion of this vast topic, and I was just casting a vote for the recognition of some favorites.
As a player I am drawn to the pre-WW II small group recordings, and from my reading I conclude that the artists of that era thought the most creative music came from small combos. You didn't turn your nose up at a steady salary from a touring big band, but for solo time and interplay and improv opportunities it was the small groups.

The Jimmie Noone groups often featured clarinet, alto and piano with rhythm, for an intriguing duet sound with no brasses:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lqlFSZSc5mA

The John Kirby band ("The Biggest Little Band") distilled the sections of a big band into a sextet (clarinet was Buster Bailey):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MPSYtLbBvtQ

Here's a nice sample of Omer Simeon in a trio setting with 2 other giants of early jazz:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ewZUpD0t4p0



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-27 23:24

Noone was unique among early jazz clarinetists in his rapid articulation and less bluesy, fleet-fingered style.

A nearly hour-long appreciation of Noone: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Jimmie+Npone+1895+1944+An+Appreciation.



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-27 23:57

Hi John,

Thanks for those links. It has been far too long since I've listened to Jimmie Noone's "I Know What You Know", it's one of my favorite Noone tunes! The link for John Kirby was a new one for me - thanks for sharing it! ...and your third link reminds me that I need to listen to more Omer.

As per radio programs...I agree. There are a lot of good programs on "once a week" - but the chances of me being able to give priority to any one of them during that one or two hour time window each week is pretty small. The archive makes all the difference in the world.

While WWOZ has had their audio archive working for quite a while now, the playlist (listing of song titles/albums) hasn't been available for archived shows. When I contacted WWOZ to ask them about this, they provided me the following link in which to obtain the playlist for archived shows: https://spinitron.com/radio/playlist.php?station=wwoz. They said that they are working on making the playlist available from WWOZ's website in the future.

Everyone:

The other day, drummer extraordinaire, Hal Smith, posted just about the greatest compliment I've ever seen posted...and it was about a specific performance at the Bix fest by Jonathan Doyle. While I don't have that performance...for those who haven't had the pleasure of hearing Jonathan before...I submit https://tubaskinny.bandcamp.com/album/pyramid-strut I recommend listening to "Big Chief Battle Axe" - but the well-thought-out, but technically simplistic wailing during his solo on Mean Blue Spirits is a favorite of mine too - fits the song so well!

Cheers! (And I see that Seabreeze just posted a link for Noone - on my way to watch that now!)
Fuzzy

[edit] Actually - on the Tuba Skinny link - #2 "Lonesome Drag" shows Jonathan pretty well at the 1:30 mark too.



Post Edited (2017-08-28 03:02)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-28 03:00

Markos...

Do you by chance ever get down to the Menlo Park area to watch the Friday gigs by Clint Baker's groups at Cafe Borrone? (Reeds: Bill Carter, Ryan Calloway, Robert Young, Clint Baker, etc.)

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-31 21:11

Fuzzy--I have not heard of these players nor been to Cafe Borrone. Do you know if it is still happening?

Also, I have been listening again to Bechet's Blue Horizon, and am learning the solo note for note......inspired in large part by all the wonderful posts to this thread. I think this will work....I am attaching an mp3 of this mornings practice session of me working with Garage Band, playing the first two choruses of the BH solo in stereo. I am playing along with the recording in headphones, trying to get all the nuances and infections, although I am trying not to over do the vibrato. I then mute out the recording to see what I'm left with. I will rerecord this with Logic once I've completed the solo and make it sound a little better sonically, but you get the idea.......I love practicing this way!

I have many more questions for folks on this thread but need time to prioritize and formulate them. Meantime I am really enjoying reading the dissertation on Hamilton and Procope......

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-08-31 21:14

Rats, I don't see the mp3 as having transferred.....

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-08-31 21:27

Markos,

If you'd like - feel free to e-mail me the mp3...I'd love to hear it, otherwise I'll wait until you find another way to share it here.

I worked out Blue Horizon a few years ago (but I only recently started reading music again - so paper transcription comes very slowly for me...so for now, it's just in my head). The song is definitely one of those "signature" songs which makes it hard to depart too much from the original. (Sorta like Burgundy Street Blues, or High Society.)

As far as Clint Baker and his groups - they've been down at Cafe Borrone for 20+ years I think it is. I know they do take a break for a couple months each year, but I can't remember when. I'll check with Clint and make sure.

Fuzzy

[edit] Corrected spelling of Borrone



Post Edited (2017-08-31 21:39)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-08-31 22:30

I agree with most of the analysis in the dissertation, including the generalization that Hamilton's forte was not slow melodies any more than Procope's was fast tempo improvisations, yet one of my favorite Hamilton performances is his recording of "Tenderly" with Ellington. It can be enjoyable to hear a jazz player just simply phrase a great melody without developing it in extended improvisation, and that's exactly what Hamilton does on that recording.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: John Morton 
Date:   2017-09-01 20:35

Fuzzy, I am thrilled to see an appreciation for Jon Doyle, who exemplifies and builds on a great tradition. His skill and experience with prominent players did not keep him from taking the clarinet chair in Tuba Skinny early on, when they were starting their ascent to the top of the New Orleans street band scene. He recently moved to my small town home Port Townsend, WA, where I heard him playing solo for tips. Amazing, to hear that unmistakable low-register N.O. sound on the street, I flipped my lid! This doesn't mean I'll hear much from him, his career takes him to where the important gigs are. He did show up to sit in at a dance with an 8 pc. western swing pickup band. He brought out his tenor and blew over the top of a roomful of dancers, the only player without a mic. Wow.

I should point out that Jon's replacement in Tuba Skinny is the Seattlite Craig Flory, who says that since moving he can now play his favorite music every night. He is a guy to watch for, with rare slap-tongue skills for a fun period sound.

Just one more tune from the old school, with Bechet and Albert Nicolas trading lead and harmony choruses - Bechet switches horns partway through:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QiErrhH-NAs



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-09-02 07:28

I thought it might be an interesting project for me to list all of the jazz clarinetists mentioned in all of the posts in alphabetical order by FIRST names.

Here's what I came up with:

Aker Bilk
Albert Nicolas
Alex Welsh
Alphonse Picou
Alvin Bastiste
Anat Cohen
Andy Firth
Antti Sarpila
Archie Semple
Andy Miles
Art Pepper
Artie Shaw
Aurora Nealand
Barney Bigard
Benny Goodman
Dr. Bernad Berkhout
Bill Smith
Bob Wilber
Buddy DeFranco
Buster Bailey
Chuck Hedges
Chloe Feoranzo
Clint Baker
Craig Flory
Dan Levinson
David Bennet
David Krakauer
Dennis Lichtman
Don Byron
Don Redman
Doreen Kitchens
Ed Hall
Eddie Daniels
Evan Christopher
George Lewis
Gregory Agid
Gus Bivona
Henry Cuesta
Ian Boyter
Irving Fazola
Jack Mahue
Jack Teagarden
James Evans
Jerry Wald
Jimmy Guiffre
Jimmy Hamilton
Jimmy Noone
Joe Darensbourg
Joe Muranyi
John Carter
John Denman
John Glover
John Otto
Johnny Dodds
Johnny Mince
Jon Doyle
Ken Peplowski
Kenny Davern
Kim Cusak
Lasse Collin
Leon Rappolo
Lester Bouchon
Lester Young
Lorenzo Tio, Jr.
Louis Cottrell
Marlborough Man
Matt Dariau
Michael Magro
Michael White
Monty Sunshine
Mort Weiss
Omer Simeon
Orange Kellin
Paquito D'Rivera
Paulo Moura
Pee Wee Russell
Perry Robinson
Pete Fountain
Russell Procope
Abe Most
Sam Most
Sammy Rimington
Sándor Benkó
Sid Phillips
Sol Yaged
Sydney Bechet
Tim Laughlin
Tom Fisher
Tom (Tommy) Sancton
Tony Coe
Tony Scott
Vasily Kotyarov
Vinny Golia
Wally Fawkes (Total = 94)

If I missed any or added a name that shouldn't be there, please let me know. Likewise for any additions you might want to add.

Edit: I removed Johnathan Doyle because I sensed everyone basically called him Jon. I also removed Michael Steinman.

Edit #2: Somehow I missed removing Michael Seinman. I also added Alphonse Picou.

My thanks to everyone for helping me keep the list as accurate as possible.



Post Edited (2017-11-25 06:02)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-02 10:16

Wow, Dan - Thanks for the list!

Jon Doyle and Johnathan Doyle are duplicates. Connies Jones is actually a cornet player that I really like. Michael Steinmen is a jazz-lover, recorder of live performances, and youtuber/jazz blogger.

Other than that - I didn't see any names that shouldn't be there.

What a neat idea - to compile the names into one list. Thanks again for taking the time to do it!

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-02 21:04

Ok---so this is probably right in the Seabreeze's wheelhouse, but of course I enjoy hearing from Ya'll on these topics...

I am embarrassed to admit I've never learned High Society, with the famous clarinet part-----

Can Ya'll give me a historical perspective on the tune, who all played it and how it became a clarinet feature, and point me to a few recordings to learn the famous clarinet part from?

I have a gig for the older folks at my mom's independent living facility in late October and would like to play that for them there.....

Thanks......

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-02 21:08

Alphonse Picou was given credit for crafting the "original" solo which became part of the song.

...that's about all I know.

Here's a small clip of Alphonse: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ftr_knt4D8 - it contains a small statement pertaining to his origination of the commonly known clarinet line.

Fuzzy

[edit] Added the link



Post Edited (2017-09-02 21:10)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: John Morton 
Date:   2017-09-05 06:36

That solo is the piccolo part from a 1901 march by Porter Steele (specifically from an orchestration by Robert Recker from the same year). This from Wikipedia. Picou appears briefly in the documentary recordings of Jelly Roll Morton by Alan Lomax (1939?). High Society is discussed, but I can't recall if he admits to its origin.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-05 07:31

John Morton:

Regarding the High Society piccolo solo in the Robert Recker arrangement of the Porter Stevens rag, someone put the whole arrangement up on Internet, including the piccolo and 1st clarinet part! I'm having trouble getting a URL connection, but it comes right up if you Google search for High Society, Porter Stevens, Robert Recker.

The piccolo part was greatly elaborated and embellished by generations of New Orleans clarinetists from Picou on. One fantastic rendering is from a Louis Armstrong record; the clarinetist sounds like Barney Bigard but I'm not sure: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=louis+armstrong+high+society+rag+porter+stevens.(This should come up as the top of the page first hit.) Charlie Parker often alluded to this solo in his improvisations, making a bridge from New Orleans to bop. I recall a Parker tape where he plays a large part of it before going back to extended chords and substitute progressions. He may have got it from Bechet.

Here's Bechet in a high-stepping, fast two-beat performance from 1945:

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Sidney+Bechet+High+Society+1945.



Post Edited (2017-09-05 23:06)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-09-05 08:23

High Society---Robert Recker arrangement:

http://www.ragsrag.com/vo/vo_highsociety.pdf




My thanks to GBK for making the link clickable.



Post Edited (2017-09-05 09:51)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-07 19:33

I am learning the Albert Nicholas chorus to High Society off a Bechet recording from 1939. He plays a cool chromatic break at the end of the first 16 bars. There sure are a lot of versions to work from with this tune.

Thanks to everyone for the informative posts regarding this tune. The video of Picou on Youtube is priceless. What is that horn he is playing, anyone know? It almost looks like an e flat clarinet.......

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-07 20:13

Markos,

At one time, I knew more about that clarinet style than I do now. I believe it is a Bb. Tom Sharpsteen also played one...which Clint Baker now owns (or at least did at one time).

Here's a clip of Tom Sharpsteen playing it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dNnHkKfRdM

Here's a clip of Clint Baker playing it (this one gives you a better idea of the clarinet's tonal capabilities): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HDJGOG7TBUA

Notice a young Clint on trumpet in the Sharpsteen tune (and a young Katie Cavera too - though she's ageless), and a slightly older Clint on clarinet in the second clip. (The second clip is one of the Cafe Borrone appearences.)

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Tony F 
Date:   2017-09-07 20:32

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saxonette

Tony F.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-09-07 21:10
Attachment:  Saxonette A rare Albert System Clarinet.jpg (57k)
Attachment:  Semi-Curved plateau clarinet.jpg (199k)

Pictures courtesy of SaxOnTheWeb.

I'd sure like to have one of these!



Post Edited (2017-09-07 21:18)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-09 09:45

While working on an upcoming blog post on Barney Bigard I took a minute to upload to Soundcloud an original bass clarinet tune I recorded a while back that combines inspiration, composition and improvisation.......if you are open minded have a listen....talk about 180 degree polar opposites!!!

From my recent FB post....

A new Soundcloud upload from the Universal Truths recording. Taking the Bass Clarinet about as far as it can go.....https://soundcloud.com/user-84203206/wails-of-whales-master



Post Edited (2017-09-13 22:18)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-09 10:31

Markos,

What a hoot! On your soundcloud page, you mention the "...outter limits..." of what a bass clarinet can do. Do you remember the 1980s TV show "Outer Limits"? I could hear this being played as a soundtrack to it or "Night Gallery". "Wails of Whales" is a great title too!

Thanks for the warning about it being different - but I truly enjoyed it. ;^)>>>

Fuzzy

(Also, thanks to Dan and Tony for the Saxonette info!)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: jack 
Date:   2017-09-09 12:18

Suggest you add New Orleans clarinetist George Lewis to your list.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-09-09 23:00

jack,

Done! George Lewis has been added.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-10 19:22

Thank you Fuzzy for taking the time to listen to and comment on Wails Of Whales...

I just uploaded another track to Soundcloud that might interest some of you......this is an unreleased gem of clarinetist Perry Robinson playing over a clarinet duet arrangement of mine on some familiar chord changes......

https://soundcloud.com/user-84203206/sound-spirit-pr-clar-fix-edit-roughmix

Btw, can anyone suggest a couple of tracks that show off Jimmy Dorsey's considerable clarinet skills?

Markos



Post Edited (2017-09-13 22:18)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-10 20:05

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smJq-jo8viQ.

Jimmy Dorsey playing both polka and jazz.



Post Edited (2017-09-12 03:05)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Tony M 
Date:   2017-09-11 17:24

Great thread, thank you.
Could you add Pee Wee Russell to the list, please?

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-09-11 22:36

Tony M,

Thanks for suggesting Pee Wee Russell. He is now included!

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-12 20:51

Hello everyone. I just published my latest blog post at my website on Barney Bigard. Have a look if you have a minute....Markos

http://marksowlakis.com/albany-barney-bigard-new-orleans-creole-clarinet/



Post Edited (2017-09-13 22:17)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-13 01:16

Thanks for the Mood Indigo transcription.

Have you thought of doing a blog on the evolution of the "High Society" clarinet solo, all the way from the original piccolo and clarinet parts (now wonderfully available on Internet), to the early Alphonse Picou adaptation, to the endless variations and permutations? Matty Mattlock does a really classy version on Paul Weston's "Crescent City Suite," (which I cannot find on YouTube, unfortunately), and many other gem performances are to be had. (Another is Harold Cooper's with the Dukes of Dixieland--which is on YouTube, as is Pete Fountain's in at least two versions--one with The Basin Street Six and the other with Lawrence Welk).

I'd like to see an Omnibook of "High Society" solos transcribed from maybe two dozen interpretations by different players.



Post Edited (2017-09-16 07:06)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-13 22:25

Thanks to Dan Shusta for making me aware of the correct way to create links here....

Seabreeze--if you give me say five good versions of High Society you would like to see written out, I can get that going.....it will take some time, but it's something that I have considered. Learning this Albert Nicholas High Society solo has been really fun, there are a couple places where at a slowed down speed I can't quite hear what exactly he's playing, but I found I can extrapolate a note or two and create a pretty close approximation that would certainly work on a gig. I plan to record it and post it for you guys, as well as write it out, in the near future.....anyone, the best way to get this going would be to edit the solo into an mp3 and email it to me directly, I will keep a file and please include discog info. I am having trouble locating other High Society versions in my record collection, which is surprising.

My above BBoard post regarding my BBigard blog post now has a clickable link in case any one wants to visit it......

Cheers all.....Markos

http://www.marksowlakis.com



Post Edited (2017-09-13 22:26)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-14 01:37

Transcriptions of five versions of High Society would be great, and probably a first in print. In fact, if you get that done, you might consider submitting a little article on it, along with at least a part of each transcription to the International Clarinet Association journal, The Clarinet.

But to be fair, there is no reason to transcribe the five versions I would suggest. How about opening up to suggestions from all members here, and you choose the ones you want to transcribe?

Anyway, I will suggest five and put them up soon, but others might suggest even better versions. I suppose we should chose only performances that can accessed for free on YouTube? Are there any intellectual property issues with transcribing solos from these performances?



Post Edited (2017-09-14 01:40)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Tony F 
Date:   2017-09-14 02:45

My favourite version is Monty Sunshine's, playing with Chris Barber in 1955.


https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=chris+barber+high+society

Tony F.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-14 03:31

Some versions of "HIGH SOCIETY" worth transcribing:

I like Monty Sunshine's too. There are so many versions!

MATTY MATTLOCK

My favorite is Matty Mattlock's with the Paul Weston orchestra, a very polished, "uptown" concert version that is part of Weston's "Crescent City Suite." Neither too fast nor too slow. Just right!

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=paul+weston+high+society.

ED HALL

Ed Hall's 1943 take is bouncy and fun throughout, and well-worth the long wait till 2:37 when it finally begins. Hall's tone is full of bite and sparkly edge, showing that there is no one traditional New Orleans sound.

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=High+Society+Edmund+Hall+Blue+Note_Jazz+1943.

PETE FOUNTAIN

Pete Fountain in the 1950s, still playing very traditional New Orleans style with his distinctive Fazola based sound.

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=pete+fountain+high+society+basin+street+six.

JOE DARENSBOURG

Joe Darensbourg is another old-time New Orleans clarinetist (born in Baton Rouge and soon migrated to N.O). Here's his "High Society" with Kid Ory. This one has the most "marching up Rampart St" outdoorsy improvised jazz feel to it. All Darensbourg had to do was pull out his clarinet, start playing, and as he walked, doors along the street would open, players would spill out, and before you knew it, a band was playing beside him.

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Kid+Ory+Creole+Jazz+Band+High+Society+1945.

HENRY CUESTA

Henry Cuesta with Jack Teagarden and Don Goldie. Goldie and Teagarden both pick up the spirit and virtuosity of this fast paced version; Goldie even plays some of the clarinet solo on the trumpet for a few bars before going his way. Cuesta's is probably the most rapid, though still well-executed version I have heard of the famous solo. Even so, I prefer slower performances that bring out more variety in the melodic line and reflect the march and ragtime origins of the tune.

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Jack+Teagarden+Jazz+Maverick+High+Society.

Markos, here's a little something extra from Paul Weston's "Crescent City Suite." Not High Society or clarinet but lush, slinky alto sax playing from one of the best studio men ever--Ted Nash, playing "Storyville." What a sound! I wish the whole suite were on YouTube. Mattlock also does a great job on "Bayou St. John," another section of the Crescent City Suite.

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Paul+Weston+Storyville.

OMER SIMEON

Finally, I want to add a sixth High Society performance--this one by Omer Simeon with the Wilber de Paris Band. Not only does Simeon do some melodic embellishments that are very march-like and tuneful (think John Phillip Sousa), but the band arrangement is my favorite. They combine a two beat drum pattern with a four beat walking bass and the orchestration is fresh and ear-catching. Very creative in its use of the harmonica and call and response patterns--a joyful performance that makes me happy.

If I had to pick just one overall version of "High Society" for both band and clarinet--this would be it. This is traditional New Orleans jazz with a hard swing. If anything could wake the dead and make them dance, it would be this.

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Wilber+de+Paris+and+new+orleans+jazz+1958+high+society.

Dan Shusta,

You can add the names Joe Darensbourg and Henry Cuesta to the ever-growing list.



Post Edited (2017-09-18 01:50)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-14 09:26
Attachment:  Crosby2.png (564k)

Speaking of Matty Mattlock...

I've been working through a local archive of some of Bob Crosby's later work (mostly studio work, specials, etc.) - with many handwritten arrangements by Matty...and Matty's son if I recall correctly. During this time, the Crosby band was big into Medleys and scripted banter/singing. It appears that many of these arrangements are pre-publisher/finisher originals.

One of the cool items I've run across, though, is an old arrangement of (believe it not) High Society. The medley was being created for a show in 1958, but there are SOME parts from an earlier version (I'm guessing used for reference in creating the 1958 version). See the attached image to see a reference to Fazola. If memory serves correctly, this would peg the "earlier" version parts to sometime between 1938-1941. Really cool stuff. Some of the arrangements are in pencil, and some ink. The full conductor scores are almost always in pencil though.

Unfortunately, the only parts for the earlier version are (as they appear):
Alto 1 (Joe is written in, but Matty is written in in blue)
1st Trumpet (Yank)
3rd Trumpet (Shorty)
Trombone I (Smoot)
II Trombone
III Trombone (Muni)
Bass (Blaq)

All the parts of the newer (1958) arrangement have a big number "47" written in pencil. At the time, I didn't know what that meant, but have come to understand this most likely refers to musician's union 47. This summer, a friend (who didn't even know I was researching this) asked if I wanted an old musician's book from back in the 50s which he had just been given. I said, "Sure!" When I got it from him - it was a local musician union 47's directory from the 1957 era. It lists the phone numbers and addresses of nearly every Crosby band member at that time! Matty, Eddie, etc. Again, pretty cool stuff. It has been difficult for me to find a crowd to share this information with...as most people just sorta stare at me blankly while I describe the find to them.  :)

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-09-14 10:02

seabreeze,

Joe Darensbourg and Henry Cuesta have been added!

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-17 20:17

Thanks to Seabreeze for the great post of High Society versions. I will fully investigate your suggestions when I have the time in the next week or two.....

Meantime, I have posted the Intro and first two chapters of my soon to be self published book The Improvising Clarinetist on my blog......have a look here if you are interested....

http://marksowlakis.com/improvising-clarinetist-comprehensive-guide-jazz-clarinet-chapters-1-2/

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-19 19:44

I was just reminded of another clarinetist we missed in the list: Antti Sarpila

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-20 08:00

Fuzzy,

I have to admit I'd never heard of Antti Sarpila till you mentioned him. His performances on YouTube suggest he's mostly a swing-based clarinetist. How many remember Jerry Wald, at one time thought to be serious competition for Artie Shaw? Wald goes back a few generations, but has some representation on the Internet. Johnny Mince could play great swing, New Orleans jazz, and maybe some modern and classical too. A bit more on the modern side is Andy Firth. In Amsterdam, Dr. Bernad Berkhout is playing as if the swing era never ended--and maybe in some sense it never did. Here's Berkhout playing Benny's "Let's Dance": https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Bernard+Berkhout+swing+orchestra+Let's+Dance.

So those are still more names add! Sarpila, Wald, Mince, Firth, and Berkhout. And there's plenty more when you think about it--John Denman, Sam Most (before he turned just to flute and sax), Abe Most, Sol Yaged, Gus Bivona, Andy Miles (who plays jazz on an Oehler clarinet as well as classical) et al.



Post Edited (2017-09-20 20:17)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-20 09:13

Seabreeze,

Perhaps I should have added some context. My personal "introduction" to Antti Sarpila was via his playing with the Moscow Ragtime Band. I remembered he also played at the Jeff and Joel House parties...but I haven't listened to very many of his performances on them yet. One of the write-ups I had read indicated that he had studied under Bob Wilber. I definitely am not as familiar with his work, but enjoyed his playing with the Moscow group.

I'm so glad you brought up Abe Most and Sol Yaged! Two more names that had slipped my mind! I have a funny (albeit long) story about my first meeting with Sol...but I'm pretty sure everyone who has ever met Sol has a funny story to share!  :)

I'll be looking up the other folks you mentioned! I know some of the names, but others are new to me - and I need to go do some listening.

You're right - after thinking about swing, there really are a lot more names out there that we haven't even touched on yet! (David Bennet, et al) I think swing is a harder genre to pick from, because there is a lot of contrast between full-jazz players playing swing, and concert players memorizing a swing chart. I know I'd get myself into trouble trying to walk that line of which folks to classify as jazz clarinetists! I admire the talent either way - but the context is just so very different between the two types of performance. ;^)>>>

Slightly off-topic (but not by much)...I can't remember if you said you had watched Sharkey's group live. I've always been curious about his group...and why history doesn't seem to shine a very favorable light on the group's work. (Feel free to contact me off-board if you prefer.)

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-09-20 11:22

After reading the 3 preceding posts, I have added to the list:

Antti Sarpila
Jerry Walk
Johnny Mince
Andy Firth
Dr. Bernad Berkhout (In order by first name.)
John Denman
Sam Most
Abe Most
Sol Yaged
Gus Bivona
Andy Miles
David Bennet

If any corrections need to be made, please let me know.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-20 21:43

Fuzzy,

You mean Sharkey Bonano, the trumpeter whose trademark was a long feather in his fedora? On local radio and TV, shopping centers, park stands, New Orleans Jazz Club Meetings, dances, weddings, French Quarter gigs, and Mardi Gras parades, Sharkey--along with his clarinetist, Harry Shields, and Santo Pecora, his trombonist--was ubiquitous in New Orleans of the 1950s and early 60s. I heard him more times than I can remember, and also heard Harry Shields play "High Society" on his very antique-looking Albert system clarinet.

Here's a Sharkey Bonano recording featuring Irving Fazola on (you guessed it) "High Society." Fazola's rendering is pretty "canonical" in the New Orleans tradition.

http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=High+Society--Sharkey+Bonano+Rhythm.

So what's canonical? I guess something that sounds more or less like earlier versions. As to note for note fidelity, about 30 years ago, I asked a jazz historian at Tulane if you could get the right version (the UR-text) of the "High Society" solo if you were able to hear Alphonse Picou play it. He laughed and said that would only work if you didn't hear Picou play it more than once because each time he played it, it was different! So much for absolute purity of sources. "There ain't none."

We saw and heard Picou here on a video from 1959, but listen to him with Papa Celestin on an old 78 rpm recording that YouTube misprints as "Hight Society" : http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=alphonse+picou+high+society+Celestin's+Tuxedo+Jazz+Band.

Which is the more "authentic," or does the question even apply? Picou was not attached to the piccolo or clarinet parts in the march arrangement enough to prevent him from transforming those into an ever changing version that has been further changed by players through the years.



Post Edited (2017-09-20 23:53)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-21 00:49

Haha! Seabreeze, you made my day! I really love your posts!

Your description of Sharkey Bonano helped flesh out the picture I had of him in my mind! I discovered Santo and Lester Bouchon via Sharkey. Having not experienced the Sharkey Bonano version of 1950s/1960s New Orleans...and only having found Sharkey in the past ten years or so...his bands sound really good to me. To my ear, he really knew how to get a group swinging. However, it seems that my jazz friends in New Orleans rarely bring up his name or speak of him with any regard. I am wondering what the perceived problem is pertaining to Sharkey. Do some think he was just too commercial? Did he play the same piece the same way every time? Is it simple market over-saturation to the point here we are sixty years later and still soggy? Was he a caricature of the time? etc.?

As for your link to Faz playing with Sharkey...WOW! I never knew such a thing existed. Having said that - I could have listened to the tune several times without realizing it was Faz on the clarinet. With the exception of his run a couple bars from the end of his solo (where it sounds reminiscent of his technique displayed in "Down by the Old Mill Stream") or the sailing/wailing over the last chorus...it could have been any clarinetist.

As per your link to the Celestin recording. I'm embarrassed to admit that I've heard the recording several times in my personal playlist...but never realized it was Picou playing! (The downside to listening to digitized versions of things, is that I put the liner notes/record labels away, and forget them.)

I've always avoided playing High Society and Burgundy Street Blues because of the expectation of the listening audience (even the expectation of the other band members!) Your postings on High Society have made me re-evaluate that stance. Thank you for that!

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-21 01:06

Fuzzy,

You may be on to something. The commentary says Fazola is playing the solo but it could be wrong. In fact, I didn't know that Faz had ever recorded with Sharkey, and I don't hear the usual round, fat Fazola sound. Perhaps it isn't Faz, or maybe he borrowed somebody else's clarinet. There's a program from the weekly Welk show on which Fountain is playing on a rubber mouthpiece (maybe his crystal broke?), and he really sounds different on that.

Anyway, whoever is playing the solo with Sharkey "knows the drill" and doesn't much deviate from it--which gives the solo a sort of generic brand quality. I would bet good money though that all the other versions we cited here are ascribed correctly (except maybe Bigard, maybe not, on the Armstrong version). Bechet and Hall for sure. Mattlock and Simeon for sure.



Post Edited (2017-09-21 03:46)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: ned 
Date:   2017-09-21 08:11

""...Can Ya'll give me a historical perspective on the tune, who all played it and how it became a clarinet feature, and point me to a few recordings to learn the famous clarinet part from?..'''

Here's a very early version from nineteen twenty three. It's the King Oliver Band.

I too have been struggling with perfecting a fluent High Society and this is the version I use as my model. Johnny Dodds was my first influence for clarinet - he died too early at age forty eight.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rvw0a_2uezE



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-21 08:50

Ned, have you ever run across the papers/transcriptions of Patricia A. Martin at http://digitalcommons.lsu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2947&context=gradschool_dissertations

I ran across them years ago, but haven't ever read through the dissertation from beginning to end. In looking at the transcriptions - to my ear, Patricia wrote in a lot of the chord structures/arpeggios implied by Johnny...but my ear doesn't actually hear him play some of the parts she wrote. I think much of what he did was hidden more in scoops, bends, and glissandi than the clearly structured transcriptions she made. Yet, I love the transcriptions because they let me see the solos through a different lens (one that is much different than my own). Sometimes the lens was identical to my own, and sometimes it was much different...it was fun to look through the transcriptions though.

Anyway - just thought I'd share the link in case anyone is interested.

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-23 18:43

I am currently listening to Steve Bowie's latest podcast on iTunes, Portrait of Barney Bigard......and when I can spare the time I will go back thru all the great podcasts on his Ellington Reflections iTunes site.

Great work and kudos to Steve for his work here....

Have a look and a listen if you all have the time.....

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-24 01:31

Bigard sounds good with strings on "Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams"
https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Barney+Bigard+Wrap+Your+Troubles+in-Dreans with the Roger Kay strings.



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: fskelley 
Date:   2017-09-24 02:42

Thanks, Markos, Fuzzy, Seabreeze, and others here- for this resource. Way too much to digest at once- glad this thread will stay indefinitely like others, I expect in the keeper section.

I have printed some pdf's and played at them. I am not so interested in duplicating anyone's solos (though of course that would be a blast), as I am at understanding how some of the expressions sound and feel as played. And I hope a few will- knowingly or unknowingly- flow back out in my own gospel arrangements.

I've had the Sweet Georgia Brown Benny Goodman at the top of this thread in my rotation for a while. Today I added Too Tight (12-Bar Blues) Johnny Dodds, transcribed by Patricia Martin, and I listened along to a YouTube clip. I was wishing measures 17-28 had made it into the transcription. But I appreciate how much more difficult it is to hear and isolate an individual instrument in such a section than on a solo. Even today I wonder whether a tool like Melodyne could separate it out. Anyway, I suspect Mr. Dodds' accompaniment lines are as good or perhaps more interesting than his solos, since he may not have felt the same pressure for a perfect recording in the group section and may have played more naturally.

Stan in Orlando

Ridenour Lyrique 576BC
Ridenour Arioso ASB-101
Selmer HS**, Legere European
Rovner Van Gogh
Berkeley adjustable Freedom Barrel

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: ned 
Date:   2017-09-24 05:36

Fuzzy wrote: ''...Ned, have you ever run across the papers/transcriptions of Patricia A. Martin...''

Yes, I have actually. I received a copy in the post from a colleague quite some years ago and sadly have only glanced at it. I'm an avid reader but somehow an envelope of loose leaf printing is not as welcoming as a bound book. The other point is that I'm a very poor reader of music, so the transcriptions are of minimal interest to me as I learn by ear.

Skipping to the Conclusion though, I note the following: ''...There is no doubt that Dodds had the technical ability to change to the swing style. Whether or not he would have wanted to do so is something we will never know...'''

A moot point indeed.

My view is, given that Dodds seemed to prefer the small group, he probably would not have gravitated to a swing band and in any event, a swing band leader may have found his style unsuitable and even, somewhat old fashioned.

Perhaps he might have returned to New Orleans at some time in the nineteen forties to join Bunk Johnson's band in the heyday of the revival. It's the post that George Lewis ultimately cornered and made his own, but, just imagine Johnny Dodds in the same role.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-24 06:03

I understand and appreciate your points, ned!

I missed that part of Patricia's writing (per Johnny/swing). I would think swing (as a style) would be pretty boring to someone coming from Johnny's background...though Benny played great "trad" before he ventured into swing, and (as we know) he did okay for himself. Perhaps I'm wrong to think Johnny wouldn't have embraced swing. Who knows - maybe he would have come back to give a third option to the Benny/Artie debate...only later to join one of Louis' groups?! ;^)>>>

You brought up George Lewis' role in the revival. While I firmly admire George's historic role in music - my ear has appreciated many other musicians more...yet it seems he defined the clarinet role in "trad" bands throughout the world from the revival period forward. Especially with the Bunk/George band's trip to Japan. To my ear, Japan (and to a lesser degree, England) still produces a lot of folks in the George Lewis musical line.

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-24 06:21

I agree that Dodds was more of a niche clarinetist who felt at home in the New Orleans style but probably not in many other kinds of jazz (or other music).
Ed Hall is a different case altogether. In some recordings he made with Teddy Wilson in the 40s, he sounds a bit antiquated, but if you catch him later, his style has adapted to the changes in jazz. He can swing as hard as Benny or Artie with maybe an even hotter drive. Listen to his performances from Buenos Aires and Copenhagen in the 1950s and 60s.

http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Edmund+Hall+in+Buenos+Aires+'s+Wonderful.

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Edmund+Hall+in+Copenhagen+1961+.

Ed Hall was not one to get into a musical rut. When he wanted to he could easily put aside his old accustomed ways of playing and try something very different (a feat some confirmed swing or bop players have been unable to do). For instance, what can we make of his Celeste Quartet, in which he abandons New Orleans, swing, and every other identifiable jazz genre and just goes his own way? But in a new way! Ed, I believe, had an acute musical sense that allowed him to reveal other sides of his playing that maybe he didn't even know he had until he discovered them.

Ed Hall does not lend himself to easy characterization. When he sits down with Charlie Christian and plays, exactly what kind of jazz (or music for that matter) are they playing? The only sensible answer is probably "good music" or maybe "sui generis." Certainly not music for the nonce or for "hipsters." Nor commercial music that you can get an agent to promote. Listen to Profoundly Blue and Celestial Express. He didn't pick those up on the streets of New Orleans, Chicago, New York, Paris, or anywhere else. Maybe that's why they are "celestial"? To ask where Hall got that music from is to ask where DaVinci got the backdrop to the Mona Lisa.

https://www.youtube.com./results?search_query=Edmund+Hall+Celeste+Quartet.



Post Edited (2017-09-24 18:01)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-24 08:34

Sheesh! I can't keep up with all this homework! ;^)>>>

You've made me want to go retry reading my copy of "Profoundly blue: A bio-discographical scrapbook on Edmond Hall" by Manfred Selchow. I was given the book as a gift years upon years ago, and at the time - it was too detailed for me to dedicate the proper time to. So, onto my shelf it went...and has stayed. The links you shared, and the points you touched on - make me want to give it another try. Perhaps sometime this winter...

One of my favorite Edmond tunes is Adam and Evie (from his Petite Fleur album)...unfortunately, I can't find it on Youtube to share.

The 's Wonderful link you provided had some surprises for me. Really nice.

Edmond is one of those players you can identify within a note or two - definitely an original sound.

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-24 09:03
Attachment:  Profoundly Blue copy.pdf (61k)

OK.....all this discussion about Edmond Hall......here's my transcription of Profoundly Blue......

I once had a student that was incredibly smart and talented. I sent him home with a copy of the Blue Note recording that had this and about a dozen other EH sides on it. I said pick one solo and learn it for next week......he comes back and says he learned all the solo's on the recording. I said yeah, sure you did kid......he then proceeded to play every note Ed Hall played on the damn thing. He ended up going to USC and getting a degree in Jazz Studies, and also a degree in some sort of Science. And then he did some research in LA and managed to get his Medical School paid for. Now he's a Doctor and a ripping jazz saxophonist. One of the smartest people I've ever met.........True Story......

So I have loved EH for decades, and this has been very enlightening hearing what ya'll have to say about him.

What a pleasure to hear from you all, the aggregate knowledge is an inspiration.

Let me know what you think of this one, it was a very early transcription for me but I think it's pretty accurate. No changes but I think we can all agree this is a blues, correct?

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-24 10:13

It's a blues. But not a gut bucket blues or a blues off the street. More of a chamber music-- even a church music--transcendental blues. A blues hymn, a blue prayer. A blues offering sewn of silk and lace. The most delicate, diaphanous blues you ever heard. A blues that has gone indoors, away from the noisy parade outside. An ageless, elegant, eloquent blues. An abstract of the blues.

The transcription captures much of this feeling and texture. Great job. But no transcription could ever convey exactly how this sounds unless you first hear the performance. I think Jimmy Giuffre was trying for this sort of mood and sound in some of his very slow and quiet moments. Not sure he ever equaled this performance though. Hall can capture the stillness of the low register even in the higher registers where Giuffre seldom ventured.

Critics often praise Artie Shaw for playing a subtle kind of "whisper clarinet" in some of his Grammercy Five recordings, but I don't think he's got anything on Hall the way Hall plays in his Celeste Quartet.

Compare Hall's Profoundly Blue with Bechet's Blue Heaven. Both masterpieces, but how different the blues can be! Bechet's vibrant asservation versus Hall's quiet sublimation. As Miles Davis observed, there's many "Kinds of Blue."



Post Edited (2017-09-24 11:10)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: ned 
Date:   2017-09-24 13:59

130 replies to this first post Markos, maybe a #2 might be good so that we oldies can find stuff...just a thought. I'm still wading through this one, having started looking only a couple of days ago.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-24 19:02

Ned--I like the fact the all the information we've traded is all in one place here. For now I do not have plans to start another thread.....

I just took a quick listen to Profoundly again, and yes I am struck by the chord changes. Pretty sophisticated, I imagine Charlie and Meade worked those out. I will take those down and post them if I can.

Regarding Jimmy G, who I have studied in depth myself.....I do love everything he did with the clarinet, but I'm often struck by how it is his compositions and his framing of the clarinet that are his true genius, not necessarily his clarinet playing per se.

I have a few things of his I've written out, let me see what kind of shape they are in. I hope to do a blog post on him at some point.

I've heard Perry Robinson plays some amazing things right in my face at a whisper that were so soulful and gentle it made the hair on my arms stick up. Perry plays with a double lip embouchure and he's able to play that way because of this. He has remarked to me that he stays away from the altissimo because of the double lip as well....

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: ned 
Date:   2017-09-27 14:06

I put this post in to the ''MAZZEO MECHANISM'' thread as well: Check out Sammy if you have never heard him play.
******************************************************************
These things must weigh a ton!

Here's Sammy Rimington's (originally) 12 key simple system - now made in to an 11 key - check the missing side key, top joint.

He loses nothing by doing it...look here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kQZAQZvcNOk



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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-27 19:37

In case anyone is interested, the third chapter of The Improvising Clarinetist is now up on my blog....

http://marksowlakis.com/improvising-clarinetist-chapter-three-chords-major-minor-triads/

I have about five High Society versions that were suggested in the thread that I am working over to see about learning and transcribing, stay tuned for that.....

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-09-27 21:51

Hi Ned,

Thanks for the great link!

I'm going to start a new thread with a question your post created for me (per key count).

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-28 04:03

Here's Sammy Rimington playing "High Society." Don't know what the "key count" on his clarinet was for this one, though.

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=jazz+high+society+sammy+rimington.



Post Edited (2017-09-28 04:04)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: ned 
Date:   2017-09-28 04:22

seabreeze wrote: ''...Don't know what the "key count" on his clarinet was for this one, though...''

I suspect it was a 12 or 13 key. I know from other videos that he uses an ''Albert'' or the blond boxwood simple system.

It's difficult to see exactly what he's using as the video is...err...umm...kind of ''fuzzy''.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-28 06:57

Introducing Vasily Kotyarov--Jazz Clarinetist

Vasily Kotyarov is a jazz clarinetist I know little about. He seems to have played a gig in Bellevue, WA last year and has several YouTube videos up but no commercial recordings that I can find. He has a free-wheeling confident style that shows familiarity with New Orleans jazz, blues, swing, and modern jazz--sometimes all in the same tune.

Listen to his "Birks' Works": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXSV3lTKswc.

"Blue Monk": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nEPU8phmdt8.

And "Donna Lee": <https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query="Donna+Lee"+Vasily+Kotyarov+clarinet>.

Does anybody here know more about him?



Post Edited (2017-09-28 19:49)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-09-28 19:52

Over twenty years ago I recorded a Greek Skarosh, and added some of my own harmonic ideas to the piece. I just put it up on SoundCloud.....I never released this little oddity but, and while not jazz per se, it is very improvisatory and I am dropping in the link here in case anyone is interested to listen or leave a comment regarding what you think about this.....Markos

https://soundcloud.com/user-84203206/skarosh

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-09-29 01:57

I just added Varsity Kotyarov and Sammy Rimington to "the list". The total count now is 89.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: donald 
Date:   2017-09-29 05:11

I really rate Joe Muranyi, not a technical monster but an artist.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-09-29 06:36

Thanks Dan, but his first name is Vasily not Varsity though he might sometimes play the "Varsity Drag." Please correct the spelling.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-09-29 06:45

seabreeze, I corrected the spelling. Thanks for catching that. Sometimes my rather severe dyslexia can really mess things up! Sorry about that!

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-10-02 00:39

I second the vote for Joe Muranyi, a fine mostly traditional New Orleans jazz player.

One player I've been following is jazz sax artist Shabaka Hutchings. He seems to be very gently developing his style on clarinet somewhere in the orbit of where Pharaoh Sanders and Sun Ra meet the music of the Caribbean. I expect to hear many good things from him on clarinet (even occasionally metal clarinet).

Here he's playing a kind of island music (or is it "one world music"?) on solo clarinet:

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Shabuka+Hutchings+solo++clarinet.



Post Edited (2017-10-02 01:06)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-10-02 04:21

Just added Joe Muranyi (#90) to the list.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-10-02 09:51

Another "favorite" which slipped my mind is Jack Mahue. Did any of you ever hear him live?

Here's Clarinet Marmalade: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iJe_Y267RcQ

I liked how Jack can play ensemble, but could also fatten his sound a bit for playing pretty solos and such...but I never made it down to see him live.

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-10-02 18:26

Jack Maheu lived in New Orleans for some time and played a big bore LeBlanc clarinet, either the Dynamic or the Pete Fountain model.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-10-02 18:31

Thanks, Seabreeze!

I knew Jack played in the New Orleans area, but was uncertain when he began playing. I first heard him via recordings with Tim Laughlin. Definitely a difference in style between the two, but Jack is one of the few performers who can trick me into thinking I'm listening to Tim for a few seconds.

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2017-10-02 21:00

There's another obvious one I forgot: Tom Sancton.

Here's a fun clip of Tom teaching guitarist Tom Piazza the chords to Weary Blues:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iXfPlPsgldQ

Fuzzy

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-10-02 23:13

Added Jack Mahue (91) and
Tom (Tommy) Sancton (92) (On almost all Utube videos his name is listed as "Tommy", so I included both.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-10-15 08:36

I did manage to post another chapter of my book The Improvising Clarinetist to my blog earlier today in case anyone is interested in having a look/see....

http://marksowlakis.com/improvising-clarinetist-chapter-4-diatonic-seventh-chords/

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-10-20 19:34


Chapter 5 of The Improvising Clarinetist-Fourths, is now posted on my blog. It includes a short transcription of Alvin Batiste's Bat's Blues......Please give it a read if you have the time......

http://marksowlakis.com/improvising-clarinetist-chapter-5/

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-10-20 20:40

Excellent practice/workout set of studies on 4ths! I'm adding these to my daily practice from the Baermann and Jettel scale and interval studies and Joe Viola's chord studies book. I recall that sax player Eddie Harris had something similar in his interval approach to playing.

Thanks for the Batiste transcription too.

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-11-05 19:54

The Improvising Clarinetist, Chapter 6-Extended Chords, is now up on my blog in case you have a moment to take a look.......

http://marksowlakis.com/improvising-clarinetist-chapter-six-extended-chords/

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: fromsfca 2017
Date:   2017-11-07 13:37

Three names to add:

Tony Scott, bebop clarinetist and baritone sax player
Lester Young, yes, that Lester Young. Played swinging clarinet on earlier Basie sides.
Don Redman, played all the orchestral instruments quite well, and was an excellent swing era clarinetist (on one solo recorded with his band in 1937 I swear he's playing Eb clarinet).

Anthony

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: seabreeze 
Date:   2017-11-23 05:39

I'd like to add the West Coast jazz clarinetist Mort Weiss to the roster. His improvisations are appealing over the long haul, when you take in everything he he does in a solo. An original voice on the clarinet who can spin out some interesting lines and also a latecomer of sorts who, after 30 years away from the playing scene, came back in his 60s (?) and now well into his 70s has an impressive list of recordings to his name.

Just a sample from YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=mort+weiss+my+secret+love.

and https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=mort+weiss+green+dolphin+street.



Post Edited (2017-11-25 22:46)

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Dan Shusta 
Date:   2017-11-23 08:19

I found Tony Scott and Lester Young already on the list.

I added Don Redman (93) and Mort Weiss (94).

Quite an impressive list!

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Philipt101 
Date:   2017-11-23 15:35

BUDDY DEFRANCO...THE ABSOLUTE BEST

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: markcr 
Date:   2017-12-05 18:32

Hi Markos,

Excellent thread! Early on you posted about equipment and I wanted to ask you about it. You mentioned you have a plastic Yamaha that plays and sounds good recorded. What mouthpiece do you use with it? The standard 4C? I have a LeBlanc Vito V40 that I really like. Would the Fobes barrels be helpful? Any recommendations on a mouthpiece and reed that work well together? I've been using a VanDoren M30 with the 88 profile. Nice tone but I still have problems finding the best reed strength for it. Any thoughts?

-Mark

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-12-05 19:29

markcr:

Excellent questions.......Disclaimer, Clark Fobes and I are very good friends. I have known Fobes well since 1985. I have consulted with him on mouthpieces, watched him switch from repair work to mouthpiece work exclusively, played a lot of golf with him, and now if he'd only stop hitting on my girlfriend....but that's another story!

I play a Fobes clarinet mouthpiece with a 3L facing, which is in between his more open 4L and his closer 2L. The blank is an old blank that he no longer uses, but it is similar to his intermediate Nova model.

I also carry 64 and 65 mm Fobes delrin barrels for the Yamaha plastic. Fobes makes them especially for the plastic student clarinets and they are incredible. My Yamaha clarinet, which I've had since the mid 90's, has cork pads in the upper joint. With this set up I use Vandoren V12 reeds, I practice on the 2 1/2's and play gigs on the 3's. Here is a link to a blog post on my website about Reed Care and Maintenance.....

http://marksowlakis.com/clarinetsaxophone-reed-care-reed-maintenance/

On my Soundcloud page check out the Turkish Miniatures, they were recorded on the Yamaha plastic....https://soundcloud.com/user-84203206

Actually my entire recording Marking Time is all on the Yamaha plastic.

Perry Robinson has recorded a lot on his Yamaha plastic, he loves it as well.....

I have never really had any luck with Vandoren mouthpieces.

Fobes Cocobollo barrels are wonderful, I use them on my Buffets......

Back in the early 90's when I was in NYC I had a few lessons with Eddie Daniels. He was using Buffet Prestige clarinets with Kaspar mouthpieces and Vandoren reeds then. I often use my Prestige for recordings sessions still......to me this period of Eddie, the GRP recordings, is where he sounds his absolute best. To me the low end of the Prestige, at least on my horn, is really warm and gorgeous. I also have a standard R-13 silver that gets used around the house a lot. The Yamaha goes everywhere.

Mike Manning in SF, formerly of NYC, is a great repairman and makes great custom cases......

Best of luck......Markos

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: markcr 
Date:   2017-12-05 21:19

Hi Markos,

Great to hear you and Clark are good friends. A couple of years ago when I first got a clarinet, I e-mailed Clark and asked him all sorts of questions which he helped me out with. I started out with his Debut mouthpiece and I still use it from time to time.

Curious as to which Yamaha you have (YCL20, 23, 250)? I bought an eBay ycl20 when I first started out but it arrived in bad shape. To have it overhauled would have cost me more than I felt it was worth. I loaned it to a buddy and his daughter's music teacher was able to get it playable so she used it for a couple of semesters. I should call him and see if she's still using it. If not, I may be able to get it back. They may have donated it to the school, though. The plastic Vito I have sounds really nice. My latest find was a $100 Noblet Artist which I really like. It's in dire need of adjustment but I can play it as is until I find someone to take it to.

I really enjoyed reading your blog post on reed care and maintenance. I picked up some really good pointers from that post. One, I think I'm playing too stiff a reed for my ability/level. I've fallen down that rabbit hole thinking that the "pros" use 3.5 - 4.0 reeds. So, I've been pushing myself to use stiffer reeds all the time. The fact that you practice with 2.5 and gig with 3.0 V12's is really refreshing to read. I'm going to back off the stiffness for a while so that I get some feeling back in my lips. LOL! The second point you brought up is regarding synthetic reeds. I've been using Legeres because I enjoy tinkering with cane reeds about as much as I enjoy putting new strings on my guitar. However, I never realized that my somewhat flat throat tones might be related to the synthetic reed and not my clarinet, mouthpiece or barrel. I might just go back to cane - if anything, to make sure I'm not developing bad habits by compensating for the synthetic reeds.

I'll check out your soundcloud page this evening! Oh, and very cool you had the chance to study with Eddie Daniels!!

Cheers!
-Mark

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 Re: Jazz Clarinet
Author: Markos 
Date:   2017-12-17 19:14

A new blog post now up on my Website....

http://marksowlakis.com/charlie-parker-bird-gets-worm/

There are a couple of adapted clarinet pdf's in the post in case anyone's is interested.....Markos

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