1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  

composition processes, EQ, technique and australia

Discussion in 'Ask Janek Gwizdala' started by jazzcrime, Mar 18, 2009.


  1. hi janek,
    sorry if the title of this thread is confusing or misleading... just thought it'd kill two birds with one stone in my post.

    first of all - inspired by some of the great playing, arranging and composition i've heard from purchasing your bootlegs from your website i've thought about (as a bass player/band leader) writing some of my own tunes.

    i have written tunes before, however i wondered how YOU go about composing tunes. perhaps you have some kind of process? i know some people prefer to write a melody, and put chords to it, or the other way around, or some take a fairly theoretical based approach to things. any insight into how you do this would be fantastic.

    another thing, just out of curiosity, i own a fodera anthony jackson 6 bass myself and i was wondering how you EQ'd your bass and whether you ran passive or active? just curious, how you get such a clear, precise, yet full, punchy, and warm sound? sounds like a really hot signal, like maybe the gain is up right up on your amp?

    another question i have is to do with your speed and execution especially in your right hand - i know you've touched on this before but i was wondering how much time you put specifically into working up the monster chops you have now in your daily practice routine? do you think it's something everybody has the potential to achieve? i was just wondering because i can't imagine myself physically playing as fast as guys like you do sometimes. i study music at elder conservatorium in adelaide and i have a friend who can play a solid, even stream of notes just as fast as any guitar player can shred with a pick, but i just can't imagine myself doing the same.

    another question, pretty unrelated, when are you going to come out to australia??? have any plans or inspirations to? either way i know if you ever do i'm going wherever i have to go to catch it!

    thanks. kindest regards.

    brett
     
  2. janekbass

    janekbass

    Jan 28, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Founder and CEO of http://janeksbassstudio.com
    Brett,


    for me the writing thing comes in waves of different stuff, but more than anything it starts with a melody. I'm into developing short phrases, and using reharmonization to expand something that can be very simple sounding in it's rawest form, but lush and full by adding a few simple harmonic devices.

    as for the bass..... for my music everything is totally flat. I use no EQ, just fingers and volume. The bass is active, but I really don't think it has that much of an strong output. I'm actually thinking about making some adjustments to the pre amp so I don't have to drive the amp so much. but either way I'm not really blasting the bass or the amp, just a nice balance of gain and volume and then using the fingers for dynamics.

    with the execution of basic technique at a high speed I guess I've spent quite a bit of time over the years developing that. I have flexibility exercises that I work on most days to keep my technique in shape, but the most important aspect of it is to make sure that whatever I play be musical. No matter how fast or how slow. Real technique is the ability to express your musical thoughts on your instrument, not to be able to play fast. Charlie Haden has slow thoughts, pat Metheny has some fast ones sometimes... both have incredible technique, both incidentally play amazing together, and both are about as expressive as you could possibly imagine without letting lots of notes get in the way.

    And on the coming to australia thing.... man, I would love to. There are a number of obstacles in the way right now, the main one being the cost to get down there, and the others include having a place to play.... or even finding one without having a manager or a booking agent. If you have any suggestions that might help out with being able to bring a band over then I'm all ears. I really would love to play in australia as I've never been before. I've been booked to go three times and it's been cancelled every time, so I think it's time!!! I should be in Japan this year, as well as europe a couple of times, but it would be really great to head down under at the end of 2009 for a tour of some sort.

    Easy,

    Janek
     
  3. Sorax

    Sorax

    Sep 9, 2005
    Sydney, Australia
    Janek, most international Jazz acts play The Basement in Sydney. Brad Mehldau was there last week, I saw the Yellowjackets w/ Mike Stern a few months back, stuff like that, so a band of your own would fit right in.

    http://thebasement.com.au/ is the venue.

    http://www.sima.org.au/ is the organisation I think is usually responsible for bringing artists out.

    Don't know if that's much help or not...
     
  4. janek,

    thanks for you reply. very helpful.
    in regard to venues, like sorax we had mehldau recently too... great stuff!
    here in adelaide probably one of the best venues i've seen a jazz gig here is a place called the rocket bar. http://www.rocketbar.com.au/. john scofield, and joe lovano - was awesome. they do a lot of local acts but they also do some pretty cool international funk and jazz gigs.
    either way,
    thanks for your time!

    brett
     
  5. Sorax

    Sorax

    Sep 9, 2005
    Sydney, Australia
  6. janekbass

    janekbass

    Jan 28, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Founder and CEO of http://janeksbassstudio.com
    thank you so much for the information guys. I'm going to look into this and see if I can put a special project together for a tour in australia.

    Easy,

    Janek
     
  7. Sorax

    Sorax

    Sep 9, 2005
    Sydney, Australia
    If you do I'll come to shows in Sydney and Melbourne, and hit you for lessons in both ;)
     
  8. sounds awesome. need any more help i'm sure between us aussies on the board we could help you out.
     
  9. janekbass

    janekbass

    Jan 28, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Founder and CEO of http://janeksbassstudio.com
    well if anyone has any direct contact with these venues that have been mentioned that would be a great help. It's always a lot easier to get a foot in the door when someone is actually there telling the booking agent about you, rather than me just sending a random email to a club owner that may well have never heard a thing about me.

    easy,

    Janek
     
  10. Fred19137

    Fred19137

    Jan 23, 2009
    active musician
    sorry to butt in to ur conversation, but I was wondering what ur stretching/excercizes were. I think I would benefit from doing exercizes but i always find them boring. I was wondering if you had advise thnx.
     
  11. Sorax

    Sorax

    Sep 9, 2005
    Sydney, Australia
    SIMA - Sydney Improvised Music Association people worth contacting that I have details for are;

    Gordana Raketic - Music Coordinator/Publicist info@sima.org.au
    if you put Att: Mick Paddon that'll get you in touch with the president of the organisation. Gordana should be able to put you in touch with whoever you need to be though. If you talk to SIMA and get them interested, then they'll sort out the venues and promotion etc. In Sydney you want to do the basement, probably 2 sets in one night or even do two nights. If you want to get in touch with someone else in the scene I can put you in contact with James Muller (guitarist, played on Sean Wayland's latest album, absolute freak player and very very cool guy), and he'll know exactly who to talk to and will have more useful information.

    The other organisation in Sydney is Jazzgroove. admin@jazzgroove.com will talk to Kerri Glasscock, who is married to Cameron Undy who is the man you really want to talk to. I don't have a direct contact for Cameron. Kerri and Cameron also run a secret gig (called 505) in a warehouse space in the city which is the coolest room in town. They run Monday and Wednesdays. That would be worth your while playing as well as the Basement if you have a spare night, might not pay much though. Would be very very cool for a trio vibe (well anything really but it's an intimate vibe which really suits trios.)
     
  12. janekbass

    janekbass

    Jan 28, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Founder and CEO of http://janeksbassstudio.com
    thank you so much for all the help and advice! tickets are only $681 from Los Angeles right now so I'm thinking of taking the band to LA for a show and then onto Sydney to break up the trip, and keep the costs down.

    Thinking of bringing a special guest with me too, any suggestions would be welcomed! i think the basis of the band will be me, jojo mayer, and Oli Rockberger. but a guest horn player or guitarist might be fun....

    Easy,

    Janek
     
  13. Sorax

    Sorax

    Sep 9, 2005
    Sydney, Australia
    Tim Miller. People love guitarists in Sydney. I'm sure whoever you bring will be massively appreciated though. Although, it might help to bring someone with a bit of weight to their name, just in terms of making sure you can fill a room in a scene where you may not be as widely known. Randy Brecker? I'd love to see Tim Miller though, he's one of my favourite players to listen to for a loooong list of reasons.

    Yeah.. I'm quite into Tim Miller ;)
     
  14. Please come to Sydney! Especially with Jojo Mayer! :D And please if possible play at a venue where under 18's are allowed to come and watch (The Basement allows this). 505 is also an AWESOME jazz bar.
     
  15. wow, if everything works out i'm gonna be hitting up sydney!

    janek, will be hitting you up for a lesson if you plan on doing any.

    oh, and i don't know if it's at all possible but gregoire maret is one of the most beautiful players i've ever heard!
     
  16. Don't forget Perth! once you get into Australia it's not too expensive to travel interstate if you shop around with the airlines.

    The places in town to get in touch of here would be the PJS (Perth Jazz Society):
    http://www.perthjazzsociety.com/contact

    Or probably even better, a new jazz club has opened up recently called The Ellington, it's owned/run buy the head of music at WAAPA (West Australian Academy of Performing arts). He's the guy to talk to, as you could possible get in to the academy to do some workshops as well. Website is:
    http://www.ellingtonjazz.com.au
    contact: Graham Wood - email: info@ellingtonjazz.com.au

    Would be great to get you down here man.. we have a fairly active and supportive jazz community, hit me up if you need any more contacts/details as i could probably put you in touch with whoever you need.

    -Andy.
     
  17. janekbass

    janekbass

    Jan 28, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Founder and CEO of http://janeksbassstudio.com
    So after quite a few emails back and forth with various people it looks as though we're going to make Australia happen as a stop on my world tour in November this year. Right now we're just locked into Sydney and are looking for other possibilities for Perth, Adelaide, Malbourne and Brisbane. Any more suggestions are more than welcome, and I shall keep this thread updated with Australia news as and when I get it.

    Easy,

    Janek
     
  18. Hey Janek, that's great news! Do you have a venue organised for Sydney yet? And who are you bringing with you?
    Also, are you going to be available for lessons, or is that not going to be possible?

    Thanks,

    Jaydin
     
  19. Sorax

    Sorax

    Sep 9, 2005
    Sydney, Australia
    That sounds great man. I'd love to jump in and hook up a lesson as well if possible. Something you might also want to do if you have the time is run a workshop at the Australian Institute of Music, the school I'm kind of studying at and "TheJaydin" is at. That might help make up costs. Jamie Rigg is the head of the Contemporary Music dept. jrigg@aim.edu.au
     
  20. totally hoping the date will be free for me to make the trip to sydney to see you play janek! even better if you came to adelaide. would also love to hook up a lesson if things pan out.
    thanks for following the australia thing up!
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.