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Who played in Kenny G live?

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by masterFunk, Jun 19, 2001.

  1. If anyone recalls that long solo in... I believe it was midnight motion??
    I wanted to find out who did it, but can't find the CD...



  2. Vail Johnson played a Kubrici Factor when playing with Kenny G. My question is why do you ask about Kenny G when you have the word funk in your name. He perfected taking a 3 note riff and killing it. I would go with a Shotgun.
  3. Oh.. by no means I like Mr. G
    I remember listening to it like 7 years ago (when I was trying to play my saxsophone), and I thought it was pretty funky.. My memory serves me wrong I suppose..
  4. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    That guy is Vail Johnson, who's a much better bass player than his rent-paying gig with Corny G implies.

    Check out his solo CDs, Terminator and Says Who

    He (still?) plays a Kubicki X-Factor 4-string, and his style and sound is a lot like Stu Hamm in the old Kubicki days (obviously :rolleyes: ). Great slapper.
  5. anonymous101511

    anonymous101511 Guest

    Mar 5, 2001
    Dean Markley Strings, Xotic Basses, Kubicki Basses
    What is it that you don't like about Kenny G?
    Enough of the lame 'he sucks' BS; what is it; the tone, melodies, song structure, etc.,etc.
    I'm really interested to know.
  6. HashbrownCOBM


    May 6, 2008
    He plays sharp. He's not in tune oh and he's white bread boring.
  7. HaVIC5


    Aug 22, 2003
    Brooklyn, NYC
  8. Snarf


    Jan 23, 2005
    Glen Cove, NY
  9. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Vail, you had to dig this one up from the grave just to defend Kenny? :eyebrow:

    Anyway, Kenny's style is completely lacking in "soul". He plays a lot of notes, but his tone is homogeneous, his phrasing has NO rhythmic tension, and his melodic lines are instantly forgettable. I have listened to his music and gotten exactly NO message from it- no feeling, no challenge, no exploration, no absorption. And his tone is frankly grating- it is a nasal, treacly, whiny, and simpering tone, with no balls. He is the worst possible ambassador for the soprano sax; I have heard it played with soul and ballsy expressive tone, but not by him.

    Part of that of course is tied to the genre. Smooth jazz is the most easy-to-hate genre on Earth, and Kenny is the poster child for that genre. You may feel differently, being a fan and performer of it yourself, but if you have any objectivity at all you'll know how that genre is perceived in the world at large. There are large numbers of people who do like smooth jazz, but there are very large numbers of people who like white bread and McDonalds food too. Yes, I equate them more or less.

    FWIW I don't hate everything ever done in a smoother jazz context. The band Oregon, for example, did a great deal of music which could be played on a smooth jazz station; yet the majority of their music had heartfelt and interesting composition, as well as rich, engaging tones. Peruchin played some music which had a smooth, soft, lilting quality- but he always mixed it up with some sharp expressive punctuations, periods of rhythmic tension, and intriguing harmonic expressions. And the tones on his recordings were never weak.
  10. bottomend!


    Oct 23, 2007
    With all due respect to PM ( and he deserves every bit of it....) that was the biggest load of BS I've read in a long time. This type of rehtoric is EXATCLY why jazz has devoured itself and now can only feed off it's own stinking and smoldering carcass. Maybe PM doesn't realize that What a Wonderful World, as a song, has NOTHING to do with jazz in the first place! Louis Armstrong sang a straight up POP SONG for crying out loud. By PM own words, Armstrong trampled on the art that he himself pioneered! As offended as PM is about KG's playing etc (BTW I'm not a fan although I've seen Vail play live in a different context and he KILLS it onstage) he should look straight in the mirror and realize there are people right now vomiting at the sound of HIS guitar too. (I cant believe I'm attacking PM on this. please forgive me... The first concert I EVER went to in my life was his. Danny Gottlieb is still one of my favorite drummers. I play Acoustic amps almost exclusively!) I'm a huge fan but I'm not a fan of the elitist jazz snobbery he wrote in that piece. Lets hope those little kids forgot what they heard that day he visited them. Lets also wish for a day when musicians ( however famous or accomplished) will cease from using music, with all it's power and potential for impact upon the listener, for good rather than for division. It's one thing to say something sucks etc, but it crosses a line when someone takes it upon them selves to say that something they dont like/agree with doesn't have a right to exsist. Grow up PM...they way you write reminds me of those kick ball games in 4th grade ( my dads bigger than you're dad etc.. barf)
  11. T-MOST

    T-MOST Supporting Member

    Dec 10, 2004
    NJ via NYC
    I guess Kenny can't be any good because he out sold his contemporaries by the millions. Which I bet is the source of most of the Kenny G hating. Clearly selling platnum is a no no in Jazz (even smooth jazz). Maybe he isn't the most soulful saxophonist but so what? I dug Kenny G back in the day and saw him in concert ... guess what? He rocked. So there!
  12. xk49w


    Apr 13, 2008
    Here's a Feb 2008 Bob Edwards interview with Pat Metheny where this issue is discussed. Start at around 41:00 (though the entire interview is pretty good). Pat says he stands by his points.
  13. Roadman


    Mar 26, 2008
    I'm no fan of Kenny G. but Bottomend is right on this. First of all, Smooth Jazz is NOT a genre. It’s a radio format.

    Secondly, comparing Kenny G. to John Coltrain is like comparing a $15 painting you bought to match the sofa, to the Mona Lisa. The two things are what they are and are not meant to be taken in the same context. Kenny produces music that many people enjoy listening to (a lot more people than Metheny for example) and there is nothing wrong with that. American Pie was a great movie, but no one’s going to compare it with Citizen Cane, right? The arrogance here is that only Pat thinks he is sophisticated enough to be able to tell the difference.

    What a jerk.
  14. One the greats Brian Bromberg puts out all sorts of stuff. The smooth jazz album he did was his first commercial success. Sorta sucks but if that is all you have to do to pay the bills what the hell.

    I always thought of Kenny G. as being the Joe Satriani of Cool/Smooth Jazz. :eyebrow:
  15. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA

    I can't believe you dug up this thread. Aside from what's already been said about Kenny's super beyond bland playing... are you really shocked people don't like smooth jazz?

    ... but then again, I seem to recall Kenny G being able to fill the house, so find solace in that Kenny G IS popular, just not with musicians. Musicians... expect more from musicians.

    Furthermore, you have to understand why a lot of people hate smooth jazz... you have to, you can't be so naive. I don't even know how to explain my dislike of smooth jazz, it sounds like... being bored. There is usually nothing to hold any interest, nothing really jumps out. It's so boring, you forget you are listening to music... it's so boring they play it in dentist's offices and elevators and behind your local weather.

    I don't mean any disrespect, I think you are a monster of a player (I wouldn't say that to Kenny by any means), but I'm quite surprised that, "He Sucks" doesn't sum up Kenny G in a nutshell for you.
  16. bottomend!


    Oct 23, 2007
    PM getting in KG's face is like the pot calling the kettle black. And using the Louis Armstrong thing as evidence to bolster his opinion is JUST AS arrogant as PM says KG is for making the recording in the first place. This is a classic example of the 'jazz nazi' attitude ladies and gentleman (sorry if I just offended the nazi's on the forum).

    And just for the record, Smooth Jazz puts me to sleep too. There is some decent stuff out there (Norman Brown comes to mind).. probably alot of stuff I'm not aware of and even though PM can play bebop till he drops, it still doesn't afford him the right to dis someone else to the degree he did in that essay.
  17. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    I can see why Pat Metheny gets annoyed about this - as he often gets "lumped in" or classified with this kind of music, as some of his tunes are gentle and soft - whereas they are never lacking in musical ideas.

    Having said that; although I do respect his musical credentials, I prefer Jazz where everybody in the band is contributing equally and creating a shared musical experience - which sometimes happens with Pat - the albums with Brad Meldhau as perfect example - but sometimes I feel it becomes : "star soloist playing endless solos in front of anonymous backing band"...? :meh:
  18. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Everybody knows commercial success has nothing to do with musical quality or even musical ability. Look at the young boy and girl pop bands- they sell platinum all the time! But most of them have minimal musical education, skill, or talent. Look at P. Diddy for cripe's sake. And look at McDonalds, Wal-Mart, and Coca-Cola; their products sell by the billions and billions, but is there any quality? No! It's cheap thrills that appeal to the lowest common denominator, people who don't know any better and who just want something easy to swallow that doesn't make them think, question, or try harder.

    Again, I believe that in the larger view of what smooth jazz could be, it is possible to write and play with soul and heart- it just doesn't happen very often. And the performers should be held to a higher standard than mere technical ability- even though no doubt the first-call backing musicians supporting smooth jazz soloists have "monster chops" and top professional skills, they are not asked (or paid) to write or perform anything that will stand out in any way. And the soloists themselves are typically just noodling over this bland background.

    What it boils down to, again, is that commercial success depends on appealing to the uneducated masses, not creating music that will be respected by musicians. And lest that statement be taken as elitist, my point is that the masses deserve better.
  19. T-MOST

    T-MOST Supporting Member

    Dec 10, 2004
    NJ via NYC
    my point is that the masses deserve better.[/QUOTE]

    The masses buy what they want to hear. There is plenty of sophistcated jazz to be had without any trouble finding it (if thats what you want). Who is to say what someone else "should" want? Because they don't want what you are selling doesn't mean they don't know any better. It means They don't want what "you" have. The fact that Kenny G could sell a million copies of a record and Pat Matheny would sell 1 tenth of that says more people want to here Kenny G than Pat Metheny. Whether Pat is a "better" musician than Kenny or makes "better" music doesn't matter. When it comes to music (and everything) people buy what they like... it really is "that" simple. No one is qualified to tell anyone what they "should" want to listen to. That sounds alot like telling people what they "should think". Art is subjective not an education... PERIOD
  20. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Never mind the quality feel the width...:meh:

    You buy what you like - I'll stick with quality and substance! :)

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