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Boring music

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by hublocker, Dec 21, 2011.

  1. hublocker


    May 17, 2007

    I went to a Christmas party last night thrown by my Member of Parliament.

    They had a jazz trio ( piano, bass and guitar) playing. These guys looked to be about 22 or 23 and were all very accomplished musicians, probably recent grads from one of the excellent jazz programs here in Vancouver.

    They were playing from the real book I suppose plus some Christmas standards and it all sounded the same.

    I guess that was the intention. They'd play the head, then the guitar and bass would trade solos, play the head again and out.

    The bassist was really good, he could walk on anything and his solos were inventive and clear.

    But overall, it was without feeling.

    I finally realized that when they played "Green onions." There really wasn't any groove to it and the guitarist just noodled some standard sounding jazz scales on his break , ignoring that Steve Cropper ever existed.

    I complimented the bassist on his playing, figuring us bass players gotta stick together, but still I was shocked at the lack of any real "feel" that was demonstrated.

    It's not that I hate jazz, just any music played without conviction.
  2. Consider that they were playing for a politician's holiday party. Politicians do things without conviction all the time, so it's really rather fitting.
  3. Thornton Davis

    Thornton Davis

    Dec 11, 1999
    They probably didn't care if there was any feel to their music or not. They were just there to get a grand each for just showing up. Gov't gigs pay outrageous amounts.

  4. hublocker


    May 17, 2007
    I don't think Libby Davies MP for Vancouver East has a budget of $3000 for music for a party. She's not in government, she's in opposition by the way.

    I know I started this thread intending it to be about boring music, but as far as convictions go, she is the most dedicated constituency-oriented politician in the country or I wouldn't be a volunteer on her campaigns.

    I know most people are very cynical about politicians, but I'd say she was a rare gem in a bucket of turds. I don't know how she can stand to sit across from Harper and his cronies every day.
  5. elgecko


    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
    It was a "background music" gig...sounds like they did just that.
  6. I've played several "background music" gigs for my university and did some significant traveling for the event. we had a drums, upright bass (me), piano and sax quartet and went through alot of trouble bringing equipment so we could be heard only to be told to play so softly that there was very little point in having the amps turned on. Unfortunately these kind of gigs there is an expectation of what it "should" sound like and anything too crazy or showy (or musical for that matter) and the people writing the check complain.
  7. HeadyVan Halen

    HeadyVan Halen

    Jun 11, 2010
    When you said 'Parliment' I was thinking the Mother Ship, Diapers, and massive amounts of blow...
    Anyway, this is why most people don't like Jazz.
  8. Buxtehude


    Jan 5, 2011
    I do gigs like these through an agency and sometimes I'm working with musicians I've never played with before. It's hard to be magical in those situations especially when you are being paid to keep it restrained and wall-papery. Inspired solos and 'outside' jamming will mean the band will be noticed an this is a no no. Pay is always great though. Cut these guys some slack.
  9. Art Araya

    Art Araya

    May 29, 2006
    Palm Coast, FL
    Most people hate jazz because there's no emotion? WOW. You're showing an amazing level of ignorance there. You need to branch out and listen to more jazz music. Jazz music is like all other forms of music in that it can be played well or poorly, with emotion or without.

    I would say that most people that dislike jazz music do so because they don't understand it. I've been able to take several of these "jazz haters" to shows and explain to them what is going on thru the songs/sets and once they understood what was happening were able to appreciate it.

    All that being said - I once played at a Christmas party for the governor of CT. It's background music. You play but you don't go nuts in volume or playing. It wouldn't be appropriate for this venue.
  10. Those Christmas/Holiday party jazz bands usually sound like complex musac in my ears...
  11. mrpackerguy

    mrpackerguy Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Madison, Wisconsin
    I most heartedly agree with the Gentleman from British Columbia!
  12. Dirk Diggler

    Dirk Diggler Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Anytown USA
    I would call it an effect I have dubbed RealBookitis. They are relying on written charts and not playing it like a real song. Could be the first time they played the songs if they needed the Jazz bible as it were. :) It really helps to rehearse and actually know the songs first to get some feel for the songs, (that is if it wasn't just a money gig). I'd also be willing to bet they had probably never even heard recordings of the originals.

    That's my 2 cents.
  13. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    Yep. They weren't there to impress the musos. They were just there to play their role and make some bills.
  14. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
  15. HeadyVan Halen

    HeadyVan Halen

    Jun 11, 2010
    Thanks for the diagnosis Doc!
    I love jazz, I even play jazz..but this ain't about me Jasper. I clearly said "this is why most people don't like jazz"..you heard "this is why I don't like jazz"..
    If your ever up in these northern parts of Tampa, please take me out and school me...(if I'm not on stage) ;)

    Happy Kwanza
  16. Art Araya

    Art Araya

    May 29, 2006
    Palm Coast, FL
    You're welcome Heady - the diagnosis is free.

    Whether or not it's about you, I stand by my statement. I've never heard anyone state that the reason they don't like jazz is because it lacks emotion.

    I've heard of lots of other reasons but never that one.

    Oh, and I do apologize if I got under your skin with the "ignorant" statement I made.

    Merry Christmas to you too.
  17. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    Really? I hear it a lot. Same goes for prog rock. Of course, it's usually worded more like, "There's lots of flash and technical ability, but no real substance."
  18. Art Araya

    Art Araya

    May 29, 2006
    Palm Coast, FL
    most often i get - "it all sounds the same".

    solos are a real problem too, especially if the player deviates from the melody too much and plays "outside" for too long.
  19. bobalu

    bobalu Supporting Member

    Oct 1, 2004
    above the 49th
    Wow, I read this thread title and thought "how could anyone on Talkbass have ever heard me play?" :p

    In fairness to the trio, it would be nice to hear them play at a non-social/political gig, like a jazz venue or something, and then make your judgement. You did say they were rather young.

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