Horn Solo

Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by WillyJake, Dec 31, 2012.


  1. WillyJake

    WillyJake

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    Hello,

    just finished recording a video of myself playing a transcription of Dexter Gordon's solo on "Fried Bananas". Took forever to get together, but I thought you guys might be interested.



    I frequently transcribe lines and stuff from Dexter and other horn players, but I've never really tackled a full solo. It's pretty tough on the upright...

    I think one of the best ways to develop an "individual sound" is to transcribe lines / licks you think are cool, shed them in 12 keys and "insert them" into your playing. I think about this all the time, but then I hear guys like Ben Street play pretty "bass-intuitive" playing and he just sounds so awesome.

    Hope you enjoy the video... let me know whether you think pursuing a "horn-like" soloing vocab is a worthy endeavor or if we bass players should stick to the stuff that's in the low end!
     
  2. Michael Glynn

    Michael Glynn

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    Very cool. Hard to go wrong with Dex. You are already doing some of this, but I might recommend going even further in trying to emulate his articulations, note lengths, vibrato, and things like that. Some of it might be hard (or impossible!) on the bass, but with Dex even more than many other players these little elements of his sound rather than just the notes are what makes him so hip. Even if you can't find a way to do exactly what he's doing, try to come up with ways of getting that feeling on the bass.

    Regarding whether bassists should aim for "horn-like" solos, I suppose it should be up to individual preferences. On the other hand, I've never heard someway say to a bass player, "you solo like a horn player," and mean it in a bad way. There's nothing preventing a bass-centric soloing style from being beautiful and musically meaningful, but horn solos are the gold standard in jazz for a reason. How many times have you heard a band and the bassist legitimately took better solos than the horn players all night? It happens, but not often!
     
  3. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

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    This.
     
  4. fmoore200

    fmoore200

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    I've always liked soloists who "breathe." Horn players have no choice, but when I hear a piano player, bassist, guitarist etc, go on and on like a machine I *usually* get bored and disinterested.
     
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  6. ChuckCorbisiero

    ChuckCorbisiero

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    That's why I like Jimmy Raney and Bud Powell. They breathe.
     
  7. fmoore200

    fmoore200

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    Not too familiar with Jimmy Raney, but *love* me some Bud Powell! Oscar Peterson is another wonderful soloist who I've been really digging right now.. Wonderful accompanist as well..
     
  8. ChuckCorbisiero

    ChuckCorbisiero

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    I used to hear Jimmy Raney live. You could hear and see him breathe between lines like a trumpet player. His use of space was what got me hooked. He has a light touch too. As far as guitar players who play horn like, for me he's in between Jim Hall and Tal Farlow. He doesn't glissandi as much as Jim. Tal and Jimmy have been compared but they're different. Check out Jimmy Raney, you won't be disappointed. His son Doug is no slouch either.
     
  9. GrowlerBox

    GrowlerBox

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    While we're on the subject of pianists who "breathe", I've been listening to a lot of Ahmad Jamal lately -- everything is great, but his live '58 albums with Israel Crosby and Vernell Fournier leave me speechless. No offense to Oscar Peterson or his fans, but after listening to Jamal, I find myself wishing he'd just shut the hell up every once in a while.
     
  10. fmoore200

    fmoore200

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    Definitely going to check out Raney, thanks for the recommendation!

    I saw Jim Hall and Ron Carter play a duo performance here in NYC 9 or 10 years back before Jim Hall played with his group. I'm sure I don't have to tell you what an experience that was :hyper: They both use space masterfully, both in support and when soloing.

    Of course Monk used space to great effect. My favorite was his playing with Art Blakey.
     
  11. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

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    Nice job. Def what Michael said and really getting that articulations where Dexter is sliding into certain notes. Certainly I'm guilty of hitting alot of my notes with lots of attack but trying to get it where I'm articulating whats being played is pretty cool.

    I'm a Tal freak and into Jimmy Raney from time to time. You can see Tal take a breath in this vid:

    Oh yeah Red's on bass.
     
  12. ChuckCorbisiero

    ChuckCorbisiero

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    Check out how Tommy and Red are cool as cucumbers with a light touch
    at that tempo.
     
  13. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

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    Definitely. Those are def 3 of my favorite players but unfortunately other than these videos, I don't think they recorded any albums together. If only...
     
  14. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

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    Jimmy Raney to check out
    JIMMY RANEY LIVE IN PARIS - Jimmy, Sonny Clark, Red Mitchell, Bobby White
    JIMMY RANEY LIVE IN TOKYO - Jimmy, Sam Jones, Leroy Williams
    STAN GETZ LIVE AT STORYVILLE - Stan, Jimmy, Al Haig, Teddy Kotick, Tiny Kahn

     
  15. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

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    My favorite Jimmy Raney albums have always been "Visits Paris Vol. 2" and "A". The jazz guitar soloing book he did for Aebersold is smokin'. I learned one of this solos back when I did guitar.
     
  16. ChuckCorbisiero

    ChuckCorbisiero

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    While we're on the OT subject of guitar players who play horn like, here is Jon Raney (below) on his dad's fingering. Wes was another I left out and he also played horizontal on the top 4 strings like Jimmy on his single line stuff.

    "He definitely navigates horizontally perhaps more than other players (for example Doug). I think the legato is as much a function of the pressure he used. And he used high action to make him really in control--less unintentional notes. I think cello playing influenced him a lot--if you look at the position of his fingers pointed NW."
     
  17. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

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    Ed used to play with Jon (still does?) and would sometime chime in here on TBDB. I've traded pm's with him a couple times. Nice guy.
     

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