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Archive through March 27, 2006

 

New member
Username: Jazzwannabe

Post Number: 4
Registered: Mar-06
1. "Bill figured out the changes..." That essentially applies to chord, rhythm, and key changes. Most likely, without any sheet music in sight.

2. "... and the rest just evolved." What Shelley Manne meant was that the songs took shape as Bill Evans went along. This involved things like (a) who played improv first; (b) how many repeats of the chorus; (c) modulation -- changing the key; (d) dynamics, etc. Take the song "I Believe In You" as an example. It starts in a i{rubato}, that is, free timing, where piano, bass and drums (Manne plays softly on the crash cymbal here) lazily start out together. Then Evans sets the mood for a fast swing with those three identical notes corresponding to the first three words of the song: "You have the... (cool clear eyes of a seeker of wisdom and truth"). I'll talk about "swing" later.

3. "How much is set forth by one performer as a rule... and how much is left to improvisation?" Each band member follows the time-honored rules of interpreting a song in jazz, listed below.

a) You state the melody.

b) Then you improvise on the melody. This is where your musicianship, your skills, your talent and everything you've worked hard for come into play. This is also the point where you start to communicate musically and establish that rapport with the other members of the band.

c) The others take turns in improvising.

d) Then you "trade fours". After the last person in the band has finished his improv, whoever started it (usually the pianist or the sax player) gets a turn again. But this time, however, each band member plays only four bars, passing the next four to the next person --- "trading fours". Let me clarify that:

A song usually consists of 8 bars per chorus. A song may contain 2 choruses (2 X 8), a middle part or bridge (8 bars) and a final chorus (8 bars). This is the classic structure and is called A-A-B-A (2 choruses, bridge, 1 final chorus = 32 bars).

So back to the improvisation: You'll notice (or hear) that after the last person has played his improv, the pattern goes like this: it's the pianist's turn again. He plays a brief improv, followed by the bassist, then the pianist, followed by the drummer. They play two rounds of that. Each turn plays four bars for a total of 16 x 2 rounds = 32 bars. Then they all play the melody again and end it with a flourish.

I'll tackle the subject of "swing" next.
 

New member
Username: Jazzwannabe

Post Number: 5
Registered: Mar-06
Jazz Radio from Berlin

Excellent programming of selections on weeknights. Daytime programme is so-so.

Go to http://www.jazzradio.net/play.php

then click on the last line: TRADITIONAL STREAMING: 70Kbps WMA Stream available here

Then click on Home or click on http://www.jazzradio.net/index.php to see the current playlist and something else ;-)

- Don

 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 349
Registered: Nov-05
Larry

No need to run! After posting about the Krell/Sonus Farber Cremona set up, we threw LSO's Best Of Ludwig's on the CD tray turned up the volume to similar levels to our audio shop experience, sat back, relaxed with a diet coke on ice (no alcohol to bias the test) and there is no way the very small difference in SQ was worth an extra 30 grand or so. I'm a happy camper with my lot - I mean we are happy campers with our lot.

Modern swings band cds in my collection: Royal Crowne Revue, The Love Dogs, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Brian Setzer Orchestra. My interpretation of swing is big band style of jazz made to swing that gal over your head, toss her between your legs, roll her over your hips throw her up - catch her before she hits the ground with a thud, have dinner, then take her out to a venue with a good swing band :-)

Don - sounds like you should be a teacher. Good lesson!

Sem - picked up Gilmour's "On an Island" cheap - first half very good, second half - the jury's still out. Thanks.


 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1147
Registered: Oct-04
Don: I mirror Rantz's comments re teaching. Wish I'd had some college music teachers who could have put the info in such clear and succinct style!

MR - the more gear I listen to in dealer audition rooms the more I realize that differences between like components are always mitigated by the room in which the gear is auditioned. Jan has pointed out to me that my listening room lacks a lot - and thus whatever is put into my room will immediately have a challenge versus what I may have heard in the showroom.

This is SO true with my B&W 705s - which sounded very warm and, well, "round" in the dealer room, and sorta shallow and thin in my living/listening room.

You talk about happiness with your system versus the mucho-money system at the dealer. I've found that the "looks" of a system often color my perception of its sound qualities - if that makes any sense to you? Case in point is the Harman Kardon gear, with its sleek glass-and-aluminum fronts. Turn on those puppies and they "look" like they sound great! And, BTW, they do.

I'll bet John A's Rega "looks" like it sounds great, as well - something different and special.

Does the appearance of HiFi gear alter a listener's perception of sonic quality? I'm thinking (where is Kegger when I need him?) YEP. . .

And one final observation, Mr. Rantz - a glass-ah good Scotch would/will make your system sound much smoother! Promise. . .

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 3983
Registered: Dec-03
MR,

I was about to suggest that price is not everything and then read

"and there is no way the very small difference in SQ was worth an extra 30 grand or so"

I agree!

It is good you have a local dealer with such gear, though - you can go along and chat; see what other lines they stock. Ask the salesman's advice about cables. Etc. Do they do A/V, or just audio? If just audio, what do they think of surround sound?

Nice comment about swing. Surely it starts with going out to dinner? Real enthusiasts can then miss out the going to hear some band play, and "cut to the chase"?

Yes "when a ma-an loves a wo-man". Can't think of another Percy S. hit.

Larry,

"Does the appearance of HiFi gear alter a listener's perception of sonic quality?"

I submit that sonic quality is at its peak in the dark, when you can't see the gear at all. And urge anyone who hasn't to try this simple tweak!
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 350
Registered: Nov-05
John

The Krell gear was like looking at a Ferrari (or Porche 911S) and then wondering if there is drool dribbling from your mouth. [grin] You're quite right about listening in the dark.

The guys at this audio shop (where I have only ever purchased our plasma stand) agree that speakers need running in, one thinks components need running in, the other doesn't, and both believe in the virtue of quality cables. They have surround gear (Yamaha, Denon and Rotel) mostly home theatre keeps bread on their tables. I didn't ask their thought on hi-res.

Gotta go - later!
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1148
Registered: Oct-04
John A. - "yep" - I often listen to music - not in total darkness, but with most lights out. I've often wondered (how do you test this?) if blind people have a much more acute hearing for music? We do know that they often hear sounds too soft for sighted people to hear.

MR - yep again, my friend - I drool every time I call up one of those Shanling SACD players! I can just see it there, blue-glowing in the dark, with the sophistication of tube-glow serving as a video counterpoint. How 'bout them apples? (grin)

Yamaha - in its dubious wisdom - set its front panel to glow orange. Orange! Now I ask you - is that any kind of peace-and-quiet color? Not in my house, it isn't, sir! Harrumph!!!

I think I need to determine what color the front panel on the Harman Kardon DVD-47 glows. Must ask my LA friend. . .if it's orange - fergedaboutit!

Anybody with any more thoughts on the super-priced power cables?

And BTW - the brass cones under my sub are now nice and shiny - low notes much clearer. . .

Respectfully. . .LarryR

 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7843
Registered: May-04


The value of aftermarket power cables will most often be found when three conditions are met. 1) Your equipment has sufficient resolution to allow you to hear subtle changes in components or set up. Do you hear a difference in the clarity of your system when you listen deep into the night. If the power lines supplying your house are dirty, 2AM is when many noise makers get turned off or reduced in usage. Most mid priced component systems can reveal this situation, if it exists in your AC lines. As with most things, some of us are more blessed by good fortune in this area. B) Is the AC in your home dirty? The first condition above is the most important consideration here. Yes, the electricity comes ito your home after passing through miles of non-audiophile approved cabling (a very good reason to clean it before it gets into your system) and has more than enough RFI laid over it in a world where more and more RFI exist and every piece of wire acts as an antenna. (Larry, didn't you mention that your radio reception problems were improved when you used the house wiring as an antenna?) Why would these facts suggest you shouldn't try to clean it up before you present it to your audio equipment. Do you not wash your lettuce? Once it's in the equipment, it is going to do whatever damage to the signal that it will do. There is no way to clean up the problem after the electronics have mixed it with the music. Someone posted the thought regarding another problem which is appropriate here; would you prefer to spend your time picking fly crap out of the pepper or just not let the fly into the mill? ***) You are listening with ears that detect what is there. AC line noise is similar to the air conditioner moving air in your listening room. Not in frequency, but in the sense that it is constantly there if your AC lines are infested. Just as you can filter out the ventilation noise, you have learned to filter out the AC noise. This is one of those improvements which will only be noticed when the problem is removed. When the noise floor is taken down a notch and the crud from the signal is taken away, you will notice something is "not there" and that should result in an improvement.


Power cables are seldom a "jaw dropping" experience unless you are really, really amazed by many tiny improvements in your system. They should mean a cleaner sound with less crud overlaying the signal. Whether your system can benefit from aftermarket power cables is a "suck it and see what comes out" affair. No one should buy an aftermarket power cable that can't be returned. But, generally, if your system is operating well and you've paid attention to other aspects of system set up beyond polished cones (i.e., reducing all forms of noise/feedback/interference in other ways within the system, cable dressing to keep AC lines away from interconnects, possibly an AC conditioner with RFI protection) the value of most power cables should be a subtle change. In addition to taking the noise down a notch, most aftermarket power cables are designed with materials and construction which will lower the impedance of the AC line connection between the AC outlet and the component. Lowering the impedance of the line allows more current to flow more easily when needed by the component. Along with lowering the noise floor, this should provide gains in the dynamics of the system. Probably not dramatic, but noticeable if your system is in need of cleaning up.



Once again, remember the system is a modulated power supply and that should tell you all you need to know about improving the AC lines which give it the juice.


 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1149
Registered: Oct-04
Jan: reasoned discourse, as usual, sir. Two points, though. First, my FM reception improved when I hooked up the center wire in my 75-ohm antenna cable to the metal STUDS in the walls - not to the house wiring. The house frame thus becomes a "sort-of" antenna, and until very recently made a major difference.

then - neighbors unknown and unseen began using some sort of machinery or electronic stuff - don't know what happened, but the reception suddenly got quite noisy. A line filter did no good. Sigh. Took the cable off the house, and had to tweak together a "bow-tie" antenna. That greatly reduced the noise, so I'm guessing it was not coming in thru the electrical circuits, but somehow through the house frame? Beats me. . .

I'm going to run a shielded 75ohm line up thru the wall to the attic, and put a "proper" FM antenna there - soon, I hope.

Second point - a question, rather: do you, Jan, use after-market AC cables on your system(s)?

Unlike perhaps many of you, I have not noticed any appreciable difference in stereo performance late at night. But then, we live in a newly-developed area, with modern underground service - and no nearby industrial or commercial centers.

Respectfully. . .LarryR

 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1150
Registered: Oct-04
Jan: OOPS - forgot to ask. Wouldn't simply increasing the AC cable size from its current (guessing) 16-gauge to a 14 or even 12-gauge help? Would let more "juice" through, at least.

The shielding, of course, is something else again.

LR
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7846
Registered: May-04


I use DIY power cables on some equipment. I've also changed out the AC wall outlet plugs and installed a surge protector with very good RFI filtering. Each bit adds to the final result.


The guage of the cable is not so much at issue if the connectors restrict the flow. Kind of like boring out the cylinders on your car's motor and then not changing the intake or exhaust. The shielding is often the most generous improvment to be had with power cables.


 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 3985
Registered: Dec-03
I've given a small prod to "OperaNutz, Unite!" but can't find "Discoveries". Where did it go...?
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1153
Registered: Oct-04
John A. - please see both "Nutz" and Discoveries under "Music." I'm happy that they may both come back to life after a LONG sleep!

Asimo: take note, please.

LR
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 3991
Registered: Dec-03
Thanks, Larry.

This is off-topic, but we went to see "Good Night, And Good Luck".

Excellent. Recommended. Some nice jazz, too.
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1154
Registered: Oct-04
John A. et al - some new postings as I get inspired to do so on both "Nutz" and "Discoveries" from now on.

Wunnerful new Natalie Dessay CD - see Discoveries.

LR
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 3993
Registered: Dec-03
OperaNutz, Unite! started by Larry.

Discoveries started by Simply Macintosh, then named "Ghia Cabriolet".
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1157
Registered: Oct-04
John A. et al - I'm anxious to see Good Night and Good Luck - Murrow was one of my all-time hero-types, and a shadow over me during my tenure as a journalist. Did not realize the jazz element in the movie - but that's a second reason to see it! Thanks, John. . .

All: I hope that the Dogs occasionally "slop over" into the Nutz and Discoveries threads. . .you're ALL welcome!

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Silver Member
Username: Simplymcintosh

Post Number: 359
Registered: Jan-05
2C,

An Art Pepper bio followed by a Chet Baker bio? Or the beginning of everything you want to know about messed up, drugged out white jazz musicians, but were afraid to ask

LOL! I haven't read the Art Pepper bio, yet. The Chet Baker bio was an impulse pickup at the library when I was looking for a book on Jazz history. However, Art was mentioned frequently in the Chet bio as this book was primarily about the drugs and, apparently, all the musicians, (black, white, famous, bit players, etc) were users.

Don,
Thanks for the above lessons and for the emails you sent me. I will be exploring those in greater detail today.

In regards to improvisation, does the structure you discussed apply to jazz in general including forms such as "free jazz"? Does the person who "figures out the changes" and "states the melody" typically get the song writing credits or is that shared amongst the musicians? In the Chet Baker bio, I got the impression that sheet music is used - but, Baker couldn't read it, he learned everything by ear.

Does this improvisation mean jazz musicians are more attuned to one another than those in other genres?

Larry,

The Maggies will only go if the single-driver speakers deliver a sound experience that is preferable to my ears...and my heart. :-) This is a discovery process to hear what single driver speakers and SET amps have to offer.



 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7854
Registered: May-04


http://biz.yahoo.com/weekend/cd_1.html


"If compact discs are practically obsolete, imagine ... "




 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 3994
Registered: Dec-03
Off topic, again: I'd heard of Ed Murrow, Larry, but never knew of the connection with "The Junior Senator from Wisconsin".

"Good Night, And Good Luck" is a really excellent movie; the art is not dead. There is acting, drama, interest. I'd recommend it espcially to you and Jan. It is set 1953-58. To my eye and ear, the historical detail is perfect - you will be a better judge. There is much archive footage, too. Audio and broadcasting buffs will enjoy the shots of the CBS studios. Here is the soundtrack listing:
http://uk.imdb.com/title/tt0433383/soundtrack

We could get onto politics, but probably should not. Some of Murrow's broadcast monologues in the film are just superb. That is the America I've always admired. There are some hilarious asides, such as Murrow interviewing Liberace.

But, seriously, try this, (pasted from http://uk.imdb.com/title/tt0433383/quotes)

We must not confuse descent from disloyalty. We must remember always, that accusation is not proof, and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law. We will not walk in fear, one of another, we will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason. If we dig deep into our history and our doctrine, we will remember we are not descendant from fearful men. Not from men who dared to write, to speak, to associate, and to defend causes that were for the moment unpopular.

[BTW the fifth word should be "dissent", surely? And one does not confuse A from B. No matter. Also "decendent", not "descendant". Argh. Guess I am a pedant. Maybe it is just transcribed incorrectly].
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 3995
Registered: Dec-03
"descendent". Oh, never mind.....

Stirring stuff, however you spell it.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Asimo

Ramat-GanIsrael

Post Number: 64
Registered: Apr-04
Hi to all

It was a pleasure to find all members of the thread doing well and to receive your replies

John A
Did you compare the Rega Apollo to NAD C542

Larry R
I did not break a safe or robbed a bank. The Mitsubishi HD -100 front projector is about $1000 new and the NAD C270 was a second hand but unopened in box for $400. The NAD C270 really had a magic on my system.
I have no experience with unattached cable cords. The only one that can be changed is the cable of my shaving machine
Last meetings of our opera group were dedicated to baroque operas, a neglected area of the classical music. Some of these baroque operas are really musical pearls.
I have two recommendations for the opera L'Orfeo of Monteverdi
L'Orfeo is one of earliest operas that took place in Italy about 1600 ac, still fascinating full of emotions with wonderful baroque style music.

Monteverdi L'Orfeo: Jordi Savall conductor Barcelona Theatre 2002

Moneverdi L'Orfeo: Jean Pier Ponnelle director and Nikolaus Harnoncourt conductor. 1978
Only on VHS or laserdisc.

SM
I was also surprised to learn about the new speakers to replace the legendary MMG's
Is it one of "Omega Speakers System" www.omegaloudspeakers.com/index.htm with a single driver?
I liked the new tube DAC amplifier of Dared. I have a good external DAC, Extigy of Sound Blaster. It is very good DAC and has many options but it is not High-End.
I would prefer a tube DAC pre amplifier to connect to the NAD C270 main system.


MR

I have the small Sonus Faber Concertino's speakers. I also heard the top of the line Sonus Faber Extrema for long operas sessions at my friend house. The Sonus Faber speakers are very unique, styled and accurate. They can reproduce various solo instruments like trumpet violin or piano and human voice in a way no other speakers can do, but they also sensitive to good amplification and room positioning.
As far as I remember you have B&W 602 speakers. Why don't you ask your dealer to let you listen to one of the Sonus Faber speakers either the Cremona or Concerto or even the small new Concertino Domus. I think your NAD C262 C272 combo is certainly in the category of "good amplification".
In my opinion change of speakers to SF will affect the sound much more than changing the amplification to Krell.


 

Silver Member
Username: Simplymcintosh

Post Number: 360
Registered: Jan-05
Vinyl Dogs,

Are your record cleaning techniques as complex as this:

http://www.musicangle.com/feat.php?id=54&page=0

Is this overkill or a necessity? Why do I keep reading about vinyl when it scares me so much?

Asimo,

The Omegas are ones I've considered but the Horns are the ones I'll try:

http://www.thehornshoppe.com/

From a purely aesthetical perspective, the Omegas are beautiful (I love the Macassar Ebony finish) but the comments/reviews of the Horns have piqued my interest. This article was the first mention of them that I saw:

http://www.jazztimes.com/reviews/audio_video_files/reviewDetail.cfm

In regards to opera, I heard a story on NPR last week about attempts to make opera more accessible. In the story, they said only 3.2% of the American population listens to or attends opera. In NY, an opera group is performing opera in private residences for $25 a ticket in an effort to make it more affordable and accessible. Indeed! Having the performance at your home is about as accessible as you can get. :-) If interested, you can listen to the segment here:

http://marketplace.publicradio.org/shows/2006/03/10/PM200603107.html



All,

Why do some of us become more picky about sound as we get older? It seems listening to music was a more genuine experience for me when I was younger. As a child, I remember listening to, singing along with and dancing to 45's on a little all-in-one record player. As a preteen, I got my first real system - a Technics receiver and separate Technics turntable - instantly turning me into a DJ. As a teenager, I moved to a Kenwood receiver and, I think, JBL speakers and also got my first equalizer. The things I never worried about back then were room acoustics, sitting position, imaging, soundstage etc. Beyond a basic Discwasher brush and stylus brush, I never worried much about record cleaning, either.

In fact, I probably did everything wrong as one of my favorite things to do was to turn out the lights, open a window and listen to the music behind me as I sat with my arms crossed and resting on the windowsill, with my chin resting upon the arms, feeling the breeze blowing in my face. For some reason, that seems more real to me today than the way I listen to music now.

 

Silver Member
Username: Simplymcintosh

Post Number: 361
Registered: Jan-05
This is interesting....a DVD about how to setup a turntable:

http://www.musicangle.com/feat.php?id=118

 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7857
Registered: May-04


Fremer seems to draw huge crowds to his forums on table set up whenever he holds court at any audio show. There appears to be plenty of folks who are just as frightend of their tables as you are of Mr. Dual, SM.


The linked cleaning article is a bit fanatical but well worth the read to understand the process you should follow and why. As the author states on the first page of the article, once the materials have been bonded to the groove by the heat and pressure of playback, they will seldom if ever be removed by the cleaning process.


 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1158
Registered: Oct-04
John A. - however you spell the words, we get the drift, sir - and a powerful drift it was.

You're probably much too young - but back in the dark days and nights of WWII I used to sit by my huge radio set with its wunnerful tubes glowing peacefully - and listen as Edward R. Murrow began his nightly broadcast.

"This. . .is London." Nobody in our house ever moved when Murrow was reporting - just sat there in silence as his voice carried by short wave across the miles - bomb-blasts, sirens and sometimes people yelling and screaming in the background - London was under attack, and Murrow was THERE!.

After the war, of course, he was the First Born of CBS news - and he and "Murrow's boys" set up one of the finest reporting empires outside of the BBC.

Aside from his McCarthy triumph, Murrow is well-known for his "Harvest of Shame" documentary, spotlighting the plight of America's migrant workers.

I hope the movie lives up to its pre-release hype. If it is as good as many reviewers claim, I shall purchase a copy.

Asimo: sir - with all the experimentation going on, why not create a super-power-cord for your electric shaver? Perhaps 12-gauge stranded with a nice, orange plastic cover, and of course, massive hospital-grade plugs! My, you could be the envy of the Israeli shaving world! I can see it now - Asimo, out in the front yard, trailing a massive orange power cord as he trims away his beard!
Heck - your shaver will work better than ever!

(BIG GRIN, MY FRIEND)

On a slightly more serious note - I shall look into your operas - and post results on the OperaNutz thread.

SM - opera at home? Welllll - I guess it might work on a limited scale, but unless and until you've seen and heard an opera performed full throttle on a Grand Stage, you can't get "the picture." I'm thinking that a semi-staged production at home would ruin the scope and depth of any opera.

Opera is failing on many levels. First, the cost of production - especially in largest cities - is astronomical. Union rates and regulations - many horribly out-dated - dictate the overall expense. Singers want more money - and the cost of running a "house" is prohibitive.

Then there is the sad fact that Ameruka is going down the tubes, music-wise. We no longer teach it in the schools - and home life centers around TV and video games. Seldom is music - opera music - passed down from parent to child.

We need to take some almost-too-late lessons from Europe and most likely Australia - there, opera and symphonic performance is taken seriously - and often. Also, cheaper.

I know I'm on a toot - but the sad state of cultural affairs in this land of ours makes me very, very angry and frustrated. Sorry. . .

Jan - you and I know all too well the agonies of LP-cleaning! I agree that the LP sound eclipses that of most CDs - but I cannot return to the land of clicks and pops. Remember the rituals? Of course you do. SM has yet to be caught up in the fluids, wipers, brushes, static-guns, etc. etc. etc. And if you didn't use them - welllll, the goode olde LP soon became a carrier of sound-grunge.

SM -we get pickier about our sound as we get older because we tend to get pickier about almost EVERYTHING as we get older! Promise. . .

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 3996
Registered: Dec-03
Asimo: "Did you compare the Rega Apollo to NAD C542 ". No.

Wonderful posts from SM and Larry. Thanks. I have no answers.

How could Old Dogs not reflect on growing old?
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 351
Registered: Nov-05
Larry

America is not the only place going down the tubes, Australia is on that journey also. I hope we don't get to see what's at the end of those tubes.

Asimo

Thanks for the suggestion of trying the SF's with my NAD amps, but really, unless I found myself in a postion to make a "huge" step up in speakers, I am very content to stay with my humble 602's. I agree that the Cremonas sounded very (very) good, though I'm sure it would have many worthy rivals well under its $AU12000+ price tag.

RE: universal vs cdp's for redbook playback.

Initially I was very content with our Denon 2900 and for the most part, I still am, but after listening to mainly hi-res surround titles for a period of time, redbook playback seemed rather disappointing, not that it should be comparable, I just felt it was a bit lacking in terms of how even RBCD should sound. After auditioning the NAD 542 and bringing it into our system comparisons of both players were made by myself and Mrs Rantz and the 542 was voted the clear winner. The tests were done by swapping discs from player to player and synchronising two of the same titles and switching inputs. The 542 seemed more dynamic, more open and offered finer high end detail.

Now I am somewhat bewildered. As I stated previously, we have done some more comaprisons between the two players and now both us agree that the players sound - well, almost indentical. It seems the Denon has improved its SQ so much, it practically matches that of the 542. I cannot understand the reason for this. The only thing I have changed since the first comparison is that I have bi-wired the speakers, but that certainly can't account for improving the sq of one player without also improving the sq of the other on equal terms - can it?

Jan, you clearly chose the 2900 ahead of the 542 and if I didn't make this recent comparison I would have really wondered about that (well I still do in terms of your criticism of the NAD), however on our system at present, for whatever strange reason, I/we almost cannot tell the difference between them. The NAD now seems only ever so slightly in front, but on some titles the difference is hardly discernable at all. Now, of course, I am a little concerned that I spent the extra money. Although the 542 has HDCD decoding (which is a worthwhile benefit in most cases) its purchase now seems a bit superfluous.

As I said, I think I MUST be living in the twilight zone! Any comments about this strange occurrence will be gtatefully received.

 

New member
Username: Jazzwannabe

Post Number: 6
Registered: Mar-06
Jan - "...tell me what "swing" is to a jazz musician.
I define swing as the rhythm of jazz. It's the essence behind that finger-snappin', feet-tappin' tempo that gives jazz its unique character. You mentioned Count Basie in your post. It means you are already in the groove of swing. When you listen to April in Paris and you snap your fingers, bob your head or tap your feet, then you already are swinging to the music.

I've picked a few tunes to illustrate the "swing" rhythm and pasted the links to amazon.com below. Go to the album page and click on the particular tune that I've selected. The tune will start to play as soon as data has been streamed and buffered to your PC. If you want to hear the tune again, click on the stop button and click on the song again.

Click on Just In Time - Oscar Peterson *You may have to turn up the volume on your PC.

Drummer Ed Thigpen opens the tune with soft brushes in two bars in this rhythm: "one-and-uh two-and-uh three-and-uh four-and one-and-uh two-and-uh three-and-uh four-and-uh".
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0000046XF

That rhythm is the essence of swing. Oscar comes in with the main theme backed by Ray Brown on bass.

or click here to go to the tune directly
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000W23KKI

Click on Just in Time - Mel Tormé (Listen to that wonderful bass)
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0000046ST
I recommend this album -- Mel Torme Swings Schubert Alley --- if you don't have any Tormé yet in your collection.

Click on Mack the Knife - Ella Fitzgerald "live" in Berlin
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0000046QI

Click on either April in Paris or Corner Pocket (a.k.a. Until I Met You) - Count Basie
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0000047CS

Fast swing: Click on How High The Moon - Diane Schuur
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000W0YVAS

Click on Popsicle Toes - Michael Franks (from the album "The Art of Tea", late 1970's)
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000002KCF

Oh, yes, even the beloved Moonlight Serenade swings. Gently. Listen to the muted trumpets that go pa-pa-dum pa-dum behind the reeds (saxes and clarinets).

If you want to do further reading on the subject of swing, in particular, and jazz, in general, I recommend the website, Jazz Improvisation by Marc Sabatella:

http://www.outsideshore.com/primer/primer/ms-primer-3.html#SwingDefinition

http://www.outsideshore.com/primer/primer/index.html

I hope the above helps. Enjoy the rest of your weekend.
Don
 

New member
Username: Jazzwannabe

Post Number: 7
Registered: Mar-06
In regards to improvisation, does the structure you discussed apply to jazz in general including forms such as "free jazz"?

SM -Yes, except free jazz. It defies all conventional wisdom about melody, rules, tonality, structure and the like. You mentioned Eric Dolphy in an earlier post. Try listening to Ornette Coleman's "Free Jazz" album. Sample it here
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000002I55

I'd be the first to admit that I didn't understand it then, I still don't understand it, and I never will. The only other free jazz artist I could give the time of the day to is Cecil Taylor. But then again, his albums will most likely never grace my CD shelf (my opinion only, mind).

Does the person who "figures out the changes" and "states the melody" typically get the song writing credits or is that shared amongst the musicians?

Unless otherwise stated, it's implied that the bandleader does the arrangements. As we all know, the bandleader is the name behind the group: Bill Evans Trio, Oscar Peterson Trio, Dave Brubeck Quartet (DBQ), George Shearing Quintet (GSQ), etc. In the case of GSQ, it's been documented that vibraphonist Marjorie Hyams wrote and arranged some of the group's tunes. Paul Desmond wrote "Take Five" and also arranged many of the DBQ's tunes as well. Generally, it's a collaborative effort amongst the musicians, although, to the general listening audience, it's the leader who is deemed to the be arranging/creative force behind the band.

As to the songwriting credits, it goes to the original writer or composer, by law.

Most groups use lead sheets for two reasons:

a) To ensure that they get the melody right. Bill Evans, in his guest appearance on Marian McPartland's "Piano Jazz" put it correctly: "You can't improvise unless you know the [original] melody."

b) To find out the original chord sequences or progressions, and to use them as basis for improvised chord changes.

Lead sheets for jazz tunes usually contain only a single staff, not the double staff that you see on piano books. The main melody is referred to as the "head." From, there the bandleader will figure out how the group will approach and play the tune.


Does this improvisation mean jazz musicians are more attuned to one another than those in other genres?


Yes, by the nature of their craft, jazz musicians are more attuned and more musically sensitive to one another. Go to a jazz club where a trio or quartet is playing and observe the interaction amongst the members. There's no one-upmanship. No player tries to outdo the other. Instead, each player feeds off the other's improv lines. They play alternating rhythms, counterpoints, etc., yet they all play cohesively. I think that sensitivity applies to "live" rock music as well. If you gather, say, Eric Clapton, Carlos Santana, Elton John, Sting, and some drummer and some lead vocalist to play impromptu, I'm pretty sure they will all communicate musically with each other. Unless of course, their egos get in the way!

Enjoy your Sunday evening.

Don

 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1159
Registered: Oct-04
MR - what? Australia also? Sigh. No hope. None at all, I'm afraid, sir. . .

Don - keep up the jazz lessons - PLEASE! You're providing such an important service to the Olde Dawgs, sir - and may you be blessed forever for it!

Re-reading - Rantz, Mer and I have gone the back-and-forth route so many times - and in the end we've determined that we simply cannot say that one component is "better" than another - unless it's an el-cheapo or somehow defective. The variables: time of day, whether we're tired, or schnockered, or irritated, etc. . .

Don: I've played in several combos - and in only one case did ego get in the way of cooperation - and that combo folded rather quickly. Yes, all musicians have large egos - have to have to succeed. But the smart ones quickly learn that cooperation will bring greater rewards than competition within the group.

SM - good luck with that strange-looking "horn" you're toying with. I cannot for the life of me figger out how a single, small, driver can give you the sonic qualities that the Maggies obviously produce. But then, I'm not main-stream anymore, am I? (grin)

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

New member
Username: Jazzwannabe

Post Number: 8
Registered: Mar-06
The line, "Drummer Ed Thigpen opens the tune with soft brushes in two bars..." should read, "Drummer Ed Thigpen opens the tune playing soft brushes in four bars in this rhythm..."



But who's counting?

- Don


 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7862
Registered: May-04

" ... I still do in terms of your criticism of the NAD"

I am not criticizing the NAD. I simply do not hear what everyone who likes NAD hears from the equipment. I have in the past and do now own some NAD. I am just not googoo-gaagaa over its sound. My impression was the Rega player bettered the NAD in a direct comparison. I never had the opportunity to compare the Denon head to head with the NAD. I did feel the Denon and the Rega had more in common than any other two decks I was interested in at the time.


Larry - Clicks and pops are a strange thing in LP playback. I have more than my fair share of LP's which are dead quiet from start to finish even between tracks. These are the discs that are the most annoying. If, in the middle of a perfectly quiet disc, there is one "pop", it is more noticeable than a disc with a constant amount of noise that can be filtered out and listened past. There is no doubt CD's are more convenient in their cleaning procedure than a LP, but clean those CD's we must. And which would I rather put up with; a few clicks on a LP or a CD which suddenl ... sud ... su ... su ... su ... su ... whi ... s ... s ... s




Don - If there are better examples of "swing" than Basie, I've not yet found them. I have an idea of the rhythm of swing, Basie makes it quite evident. And I can hear the similarities between "jazz" swing and Texas Swing as done by an artist such as Merle Haggard or Hank Williams, Sr. The country artists merely use no more than the first, third and fifth notes. Unless the woman ran off with another man, that is. But I keep running across early references to "swing" back in the twenties as influenced by artists from New Orleans and later Chicago (which trickled down to my home area of St. Louis and Kansas City along with the bootleg beer). All of this was happening before Basie, Armstrong and Beiderbecke were getting paid to perform. What I can't find is a reference for when swing became swing. What came before it and what made it swing different? Also I was reading an interview with Roy Haynes from the Basie Orchestra where he discussed Billie Holiday "swinging" the song.

***

"Jo Jones was the natural place to start, and other subjects flowed from him. At the top of Mr. Haynes's list was "The World Is Mad" by Count Basie from 1940, with Jones on drums. But since all CD's that include it have gone out of print, I brought instead a Basie box set called "America's No. 1 Band!" since it covers that same period.

We listened to "Swing, Brother, Swing," which is about as good as American music gets. It comes from a radio broadcast in June 1937, recorded at the Savoy Ballroom in New York; it is the Basie orchestra with Jones on drums and Billie Holiday singing. The groove is vicious, menacing; as the band restrains itself for the first chorus and then gradually turns it on, the guitarist Freddie Green drives the rhythm, chunk-chunk-chunk, and Holiday phrases way behind the beat.

"Ra-rin' to go, and there ain't nobody gonna hold me down," she sings. Mr. Haynes, wearing velvet pants and cowboy boots, sat on his living-room sofa and crouched close to hear the details. "Can I hear that little part again?" he said. "I thought I heard a cowbell."

He did. Jones hits the cowbell three times at the start of the second chorus, linking the bars together. From that point the band surges a little, makes the song meaner. "Aaah-haaa!" Mr. Haynes hollered.

"That's a hell of a one to start with, man," Mr. Haynes said, shaking his head. "If anybody wants to know what swing is, check that out. Damn! Everybody's in the pocket. You know, you just feel it: I see people dancing."

Mr. Haynes played with the three greatest female singers in jazz: Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday. His time with Holiday came during her last run at a club, at Storyville in Boston, in 1959. Late Holiday is different: it communicates frailty; it's not rhythmically invincible, like this. "But there were still nights when some of that feeling was there," he said.

Mr. Haynes's next choice was "Que*r Street," again by Basie. "There was a White Tower, a hamburger joint, on Broadway and 47th Street," he remembered as the song played. "They had a jukebox there. I would put dimes in, and keep playing it over and over." What he wanted to hear, he said, was Shadow Wilson's complicated two-bar fill on the snare drum near the end of the song.

Wilson later played more modern music, famously in a short-lived quartet with Thelonious Monk and John Coltrane.

"But I took him as a big-band drummer," Mr. Haynes said.

Max Roach is two years older than Mr. Haynes; they were two of the important drummers in bebop's first wave. "When I heard Max the first time," Mr. Haynes remembered, "I said to myself, He loves Jo Jones too."

We listened to Coleman Hawkins's recording of Dizzy Gillespie's "Woody 'n' You," from February 1944, written by Gillespie. It is considered the first bebop recording session. Gillespie is in the group, and Max Roach is the drummer. "I was impressed," he said of Mr. Roach. "It was like he was talking to me."

Mr. Haynes especially identified one detail: as Hawkins finishes his first solo in "Woody 'n You," Mr. Roach makes the final beat of the bar part of a figure that enjoins the bar with the next, and also the next chorus of the song. It breaks up the flow of time; it creates tension, and it stabilizes, too. Later in the song, during a trumpet solo, Mr. Roach thuds the bass drum, creating a single off-beat palpitation in the middle of a bar. "There," Mr. Haynes said.

This was from when bebop was just beginning to take over, and Mr. Haynes was in the middle of its creation. He saw some older musicians' dissatisfaction with the way jazz was changing then -- becoming more melodically fractured, more staccato, more drum-centered. But from 1947 to 1949, Mr. Haynes played with Lester Young, the paradigmatic soloist of the period before bebop, and had no problem. "I had heard Lester didn't like people getting too involved," he said. "But he liked the way I was getting involved. I was dancing with him from up here," he said, holding his hand up at the level of his head -- meaning the ride cymbal. "I was doing stuff with my left hand and right foot, too, but I was always feeding him that thing from up there. I was swinging with him. It wasn't particularly hard swinging; we were moving, you know, trying to paint a picture." Young approved.

***

Off hand, I can think of not other music genre where one or two notes played by a musician are given such importance and weight.

 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 3998
Registered: Dec-03
Yes, by the nature of their craft, jazz musicians are more attuned and more musically sensitive to one another.

I think it is very difficult to generalize about this. I have seen some jazz musicians who play each in a little world of his own. In some cases, deliberately induced.

I'm pretty sure they will all communicate musically with each other. Unless of course, their egos get in the way!

That is another universal, it seems to me.

Improvisation is much older than jazz, and not at all restricted to it. Written musical notation is another issue, and not at all the enemy of improvisation - it can provide a framework to keep things together - to increase being "attuned and more musically sensitive to one another".

Asimo mentioned Monteverdi. One could say he made playing chords respectable, and worth writing down - looking at music as "vertical" blocks of harmony instead of woven "horizontal" melodic lines.

Once a genre gets popular, its gets formalized, which is good, and democratic - anyone who can read can have a go. I guess some "classical" music ended up formalized almost to death, so that individual players had almost no freedom to explore and trade ideas. Jazz and other popular forms were an antidote to that - but quickly acquired written-down formal structures of their own. The composer/arranger/bandleader was sometimes a total tyrant, and woe betide any soloist who stepped out of line with his "break".

Probably it's always been like that. It's how people are.
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 352
Registered: Nov-05
"I have in the past and do now own some NAD. I am just not googoo-gaagaa over its sound."

Neither am I Jan, but I do like it very much and have to concede there is not much in SS that compares price-wise, at least here in Aus. I was hoping you might have pulled a reason out of some magical hat for the change in SQ of the 2900. I can assure you it was neither pyschological nor substance abuse that caused this altered performance. Oh well!
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1160
Registered: Oct-04
MR - well, you know what "they" say - many components need a long "burn-in" time. Perhaps your Denon needed an e x t e n d e d burn-in time to reach its sonic potential? (how's that for utter BS? GRIN)

John A. - yes, some fellow musicians and I used to "improvise" on the works of J.S. Bach - keeping in the same overall structure of the music, yet going "outside the lines" with melody and harmony.

Then - one fine day - one of my mad-as-a-hatter friends brought in a snare drum, and some brushes. Kicked ole J.S. right in the patootee and off we went, "swinging" as best we could - and did. Both metamorphosis and epiphany, I can tell you, sir!

This said in reference to your comments re improv before jazz. . .and yes, Monteverdi was a turning point for music in many ways - and we opera-lovers will ever thank him!

Jan V. - your comments re click-pop well taken, sir, and while on topic - I once had a sometimes-marvelous "click and pop filter" that plugged in between turntable and amp. Had a couple of knobs to control how much of the clicks it removed. Sometimes it worked very well - other times (or discs) it only muddied the water. I'm sure it messed with the sound quality, though I don't really remember that. . .
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7863
Registered: May-04


Probably an Infinity Click and Pop machine. Very early, bucket brigade type of digital. I had many of those returned the following Monday morning. It's difficult to sell audio equipment which falls into the category of "when it does its job properly, you won't hear anything".


 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1161
Registered: Oct-04
Jan V. - "yep. . ."
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 357
Registered: Nov-05
"Perhaps your Denon needed an e x t e n d e d burn-in time . . ."

Yeah, almost 2 years Larry :-)

Well, I guess the reason for my experience shall remain a mystery. Doesn't matter - as I long as there is great music in my life.
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 2845
Registered: Feb-05
MR, now you just have to wait out the NAD's break in time....lol!
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 360
Registered: Nov-05
LOL Art!

Good to see you back on-line - got the music up and running again too?
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1162
Registered: Oct-04
MR: "All good things come to him who waits - and waits - and waits. . ." Somebody famous must have said that?

Art: I understand your frustrations with - and without - your music. Mer and I have renovated four homes over the years - and have suffered "in silence" for so much of the time! Sigh. Now, we've finally determined that,should we do another insane renovation, we'll keep out and handy Mer's liddle "boombox" player - so at least we can have tunes while we scrape plaster, etc. etc. . . .

SM: Still mystified by your switch to the "horn" single-driver speaker. I'm reading about the thangs, but for the life of me, I cannot see how they can even begin to sound, uh, "normal." Sigh.

I'm shopping around for a new speaker system for the computer. The li'l Cambridge Soundworks is minimalist in quality - and Mer hates the sound. Soooooo. . . .a-shopping we shall go next week.

A repeat: Anno Moffo - Songs of the Auvergne - if you like heart-rending music, get this. . .

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Silver Member
Username: Two_cents

Post Number: 731
Registered: Feb-04
Great posts. Fun reading. Thank you all.

Jan wrote: "Do you hear a difference in the clarity of your system when you listen deep into the night."

Most definitely. I've always wondered whether it was due to physics or poetics. Does music sound better late at night because of better, more reliable electric current powering your stereo or does it sound better because, to borrow John Ashberry's words, the night gives more than it takes?

Electrical current does make a difference in sound quality IMO. I definitely heard an improvement when I installed a power conditioner between the outlet and all of my equipment, especially for digital playback. The immediate impression of the aftermarket cord is that it provides a more subtle improvement.

"Why do I keep reading about vinyl when it scares me so much?"

SM,

Mr. Dual is your friend. He's there to give you pleasure. Make sure his arm is in the right place. Be gentle. Clean his tip once in a while and let Mr. Dual do his thing. There's nothing to be afraid of.

As far as cleaning records. One can become really fanatical about the cleaning process. The main point is to enjoy the experience of listening to records. If the cleaning ritual is going to ruin your enjoyment, then ditch the ritual. Get out the old Discwasher brush to clean your records. That should be good enough. That's what I used for 20 years before I got a vacuum cleaner. My 25-year old copy of Fleetwood Mac Rumors still sounds great without having been pampered with fancy cleaners. Don't let the vinyl fanatics spoil the pleasure of listening to records. That's my two cents.


The discussion on swing is really interesting. I think Gary Giddins defined swing as rhythm with the emphasis on the downbeat. Or it's that thing that makes you want to shake your rump yeah and shuffle your feet (my add).
 

Silver Member
Username: Two_cents

Post Number: 732
Registered: Feb-04
Jeesh. It's been two years and I'm still a silver member. What does it take to become a gold member?
 

Silver Member
Username: Two_cents

Post Number: 733
Registered: Feb-04
What does it take to become a gold member?
 

Silver Member
Username: Two_cents

Post Number: 734
Registered: Feb-04
Anyone?
 

Silver Member
Username: Sem

New York USA

Post Number: 565
Registered: Mar-04
1000 posts.
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 2846
Registered: Feb-05
Thanks MR, the music is back in my home and it has never sounded better. I must sound like a broken record but I am absolutely satisfied with my system as it is. The "synergy" (god forbid) is just wonderful. Every piece of music I play just invites me to listen. The Prima Luna amp has made a world of difference. At this point I want for nothing audio (accept lots more music).

Larry, I hope I never have to do a remodel again....whew! It's finished and the results are marvelous. I've stepped into the 21st century. I worked 20+ hrs per day for 2 weeks to get it done and now I'm exhausted but it was worth it.

I have been enjoying Don's posts on Jazz...great stuff!
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7873
Registered: May-04
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000003N8T
 

Silver Member
Username: Two_cents

Post Number: 735
Registered: Feb-04
Thanks, Sem. I'll never make it.


Jan,

http://store.acousticsounds.com/browse_detail.cfm?Title_ID=17007&section=music
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1163
Registered: Oct-04
2C - actually, you won't see the designation jump from silver to gold until you post number 1001. Then you'll be happy. . .(?) And you'll make it!

Art: How 'bout some pics of that Great Remodel? Eh? Old Dogs love New Homes!!!

Don: more info on jazz - I think I speak for all Dogs in saying "thank you!"

SM - when your "horns" arrive, don't delay in letting us in on the sound - better - worse - the same - off the walls - whatever. I still have a very hard time believing that those itty-bitty speaker cones can give you the whole sound spectrum - minus deep bass, of course. Must be more than just the speaker? The cabinet? Guess I'll have to read more. . .

John A. - did I mention I'm getting some Anna Russell CDs? Will review on Discoveries - they're due end of next week.

Good Night and Good Luck comes out on DVD today, so I'll rent it first, then decide whether to add to my collection. Thanks for the heads-up on quality.

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1164
Registered: Oct-04
SM - Good Grief! Went online to your "hornshop" web site, and kicked in the Frappers Pictures. One of the speaker-buyers - in Canada - keeps one or more Cougars, fer Kip's sake! You'll be in, uh, "interesting" company if you join the crowd that bought those speakers! GRIN yah gotta see dat pic fer yourself. .

LR
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 2847
Registered: Feb-05
Larry, I have not as yet figured out how to post pics. I read the instructions and still don't get it. I'm afraid I'm a low tech guy in a high tech world, and yes I did used to work at Hewlett Packard...go figure. Any assistance would be appreciated. Off to work!
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7874
Registered: May-04


Yes, Don, a bit more on "jazz" please. Let's begin this lesson with, "All jazz is just numbers."
 

New member
Username: Jazzwannabe

Post Number: 10
Registered: Mar-06
John - Improvisation is much older than jazz, and not at all restricted to it.

True. Flamenco music is the other type of music I can think of that is based largely on improvisation. A guitarist may take a Spanish folk song as a theme then improvise on it while la señorita dances gracefully. The dance itself is also improvised. So is the playing of the castanets.

I agree that a form of improvisation did exist long before it defined jazz. However, this improvisation took the form of variations on a popular theme. Examples are Rachmaninoff's Variations on a Theme of Paganini, the 18th of which is the most popular, and Fernando Sor's Variations On A Theme Of Mozart (for guitar). The difference between variations and improvisation is that the former is played as written, whereas, the latter is played spontaneously.

Variations still restrict the player to what the composer originally wrote down on paper. Improvisation, on the other hand, gives the player the freedom to twist, shape, and re-shape the theme ad libitum* (at liberty). "Never play a thing the same way twice," Louis Armstrong said. He was talking about improvisation and he was right.

* Occasionally, you will still hear older musicians use "ad lib" to mean "improvise."

I don't know about Monteverdi, so I can't comment on it. As to making "playing chords respectable", I don't know what you meant by that. Almost every written classical music, whether it's by Bach or Debussy has chords and chord progressions, so playing them is/was inescapeable.

Art - congrats on the successful home reno. Been there, done that, but I think it's worth the hassle and the dust. Enjoy the new digs!

Larry - thanks; it's a pleasure to share the little that I know of jazz. On what other specific topics can I be of service to you and others? Still, I prefer to play jazz or more correctly, learn to play it properly than explain it lest I sound pedantic. I always keep in mind a quote from Bill Evans: "It bugs me when people try to analyze jazz as an intellectual theorem. It's not. It's feeling. Amen.

Cheers!
Don

 

Bronze Member
Username: Jazzwannabe

Post Number: 11
Registered: Mar-06
Jan - what do you mean by "... is just numbers?" Please elaborate.

thanks,
Don

 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7886
Registered: May-04


I thought you might have come across this dismissive phrase at some time. It seems to have come from the days when jazz was a "popular" music genre. When jazz became more cerebral in the late 1950's, the naysayers where quick to point to the structure of a jazz composition and dismiss it as merely playing the numbers. To take an example from the link you provided above concerning "swing"; "The most basic element of swing is the swing eighth note. In classical music, a set of eighth notes in 4/4 time are meant to take exactly one half of a beat each. This style is called straight eighth notes. Play a C major scale "C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C" in straight eighth notes. If you have a metronome, set it to 96 beats per minute. Those are quarter notes, "one, two, three, four". Subdivide this in your mind, "one and two and three and four and".
A common approximation to swing eighth notes uses triplets. The basic beats are be subdivided in your mind as "one-and-uh two-and-uh three-and-uh four-and-uh", and you play only on the beat and on the "uh". The first note of every beat will be twice as long as the second. This will sound like Morse Code dash-dot-dash-dot-dash-dot-dash-dot and is far too exaggerated for most jazz purposes. Somewhere in between straight eighth notes (1:1 ratio between first and second note) and triplets (2:1 ratio) lie true swing eighth notes. I cannot give an exact ratio, however, because it varies depending on the tempo and the style of the piece. In general, the faster the tempo, the straighter the eighth notes. Also, pre-bebop era players often use a more exaggerated swing than later performers, even at the same tempo. No matter what the ratio, the second "half" of each beat is usually accented, and beats two and four are usually accented as well. Again, the amount of accent depends on the player and the situation."



As you point out, the structure of a jazz composition is made by adding and subtracting the basic elements of a chord progression. Improvisation among jazz players is, I have heard, all about taking the progression out to new lengths and combinations. Playing the first, third and fifth notes will give you Country Swing. Adding the 7th, 9th, and 13th tones will give you "jazz". Subtracting the root note from the piano and dividing the chord with the bass player will give you "jazz". As Evans says, people try to analyze the "intellectual theorem" of playing jazz in order to reduce the significance of the performer and the music.


Maybe this is something that needs no discussion, but that phrase, "all jazz ... ", has stuck in my head for a long time.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jazzwannabe

Post Number: 13
Registered: Mar-06
Jan - No, I've never heard that phrase before. Hmmm... interesting.

What I do get occasionally from some well-meaning people is this: Can you read music? Or do you just play by ear?

Of course, I can read music, although my sight-reading skills are only passable. My reply to the questions above is paraphrasing what Bill Evans said --- it's all about playing what you feel.

Ciao,
Don
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1166
Registered: Oct-04
Don: "Ciao?" Since when did you become Italian?
(GRIN)
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1175
Registered: Oct-04
John A. - finally saw "Good Night and good Luck" on DVD tonight. Brought back tons of memories - and a chilling sense of "this is happening all over again in our country, right now." Chilling. . .

I was fine with the movie - until the last few minutes. I think Clooney dropped the ball in failing to portray the final conflict between Murrow and McCarthy - and the film's ending, though poignant, was, IMHO, very weak - as most movies are today, again, IMHO.

Good jazz tracks - some good acting - but Clooney missed the mark in portraying Fred Friendly. If you knew Friendly, you'd understand. . .

I'd thought of buying the movie - but after watching it, I realize that there's just not enough there for me to watch it repeatedly. Sad to say.

Thousands of us young journalists grew up in Murrow's shadow - and considered him our ideal of what a journalist should be. Later, he was followed by Walter Cronkite, an equally respected journalist within the ranks.

Now, we have Frick and Frack, and the latest teeny-bopper blonde with great teeth and little above them. Sigh. Such is the demise of TV journalism - a slow, agonizing death, being eaten away by leeches and maggots.

Anyway - how 'bout those musicians? Fine music for a film soundtrack. . .

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 384
Registered: Nov-05
Larry

Has Mer let you loose again?

http://www.news.com.au/story/0,10117,18515150-2,00.html

Take it easy on us okay?

:-)
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1177
Registered: Oct-04
MR: Uh-oh! Sorry about that, sir. I hope my namesake stays far away from you!

Interesting that the hurricane that nearly did us in last year was "Wilma." Same name as Mer's mother. . .and in this instance, quite accurate!(grin) Even Mer would agree. . .

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 3999
Registered: Dec-03
Thanks, Larry. I saw "Good Night And Good Luck" at the cinema and it was glad I did. I do not know the "full story". What's that throw-away remark about Fred Friendly?

Anyway, history repeats itself, to be sure.
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1178
Registered: Oct-04
John A. - Fred Friendly was always a "larger than life" character, and played a much more active role in Murrow's life than was evidenced by the Clooney character in the movie.

Friendly held together the "team" that backed Murrow on and off-camera, and literally "ran interference" for Murrow with the CBS brass who lost faith in Murrow once his ratings got to the bargain-basement stage.

Murrow was a cool-tempered reporter - very intelligent, but not a classically trained one - he was actually better versed in "speech and diction" than he was in the nitty-gritty of news writing.

That is NOT to say that he was not a good reporter: he was, but many people have said that Murrow put style first, and substance second. He carefully practiced his "look" on TV, for example.

Do I still respect him? Absolutely. He broke ground journalistically and stylistically - for which thousands of us "reporters" thank him.

The movie was obviously put together by people who had no concept of the "guts" of TV news - or decided to forego accuracy for the cinematic moments. Those "guts" would have made a much more intense movie.

Too bad that Murrow is one of the "forgotten ones." When I went to our emporium of lost hope and dreams to rent the movie I asked the gum-popping, pimple-faced clerk if he'd seen the movie. "Nah," he said, "I never heard of the guy and it sounds boring."

There were perhaps thirty copies of the movie on the shelves - and the clerk said that very few of them "went out the door." Sigh. . .

Sorry about my soapbox, John - but I just feel the Murrow story could/should have been much better-told. And to have left out the spine-tingling "This. . .is London" reports - well, that was just plain irresponsible. IMHO, sir, it was some of Murrow's finest reporting - and would have set the stage for his bulldog attitude later in his career.

OK - too much "ink" from me. Hope all is well with you and all the Old Dogs. Long may we all wave. .

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1179
Registered: Oct-04
John A. et al: sorry, I was going to insert this above, but got lost in my own typing.
- - - - - - - - - - - - -
Friendly's 1967 book "Due To Circumstances Beyond Our Control..." deals with his experiences working at CBS News and his friendship and close working relationship with broadcast journalist Edward R. Murrow. The book includes material on Murrow's famous broadcast on Senator Joseph McCarthy and Friendly's resignation from CBS News. Friendly left CBS after the network management decided to preempt coverage of a Congressional hearing on American involvement in the Vietnam war and run a re-run of "I Love Lucy" (1951)in its place.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
About 15 years later, Friendly was back - as President of CBS News.

LR
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4003
Registered: Dec-03
Thanks, Larry.

All interesting stuff. Appreciated. Will be back.
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4005
Registered: Dec-03
Interesting link, MR. Mackay is quite a bit North of you, as I recall, and in the less populated part of Queensland. Nevertheless, good wishes. Batten down your hifi. Why, when Larry gets riled, there is no telling what can happen....
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 387
Registered: Nov-05
Yes, John, they seldom make their way down to where I live, but when they do, well, the word soon gets around:

"the surf's up"

Speaking of which - we are just about to go there now for our weekend ritual. Cheers.

 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4007
Registered: Dec-03
Cheers, MR.

Anyone following the original topic, it comes up again on Future of SACD vs. other hi-res formats.
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 392
Registered: Nov-05
Seems Larry is getting quite angry - my brother/sister-in-law had to be evacuated from their home north of Townsville, their house is just over the road from the beachfront. They and others are staying at a nearby hotel and apparantly, if worst comes to worst, the large coldroom will be the 'safehouse' for all concerned. Some are saying this cylclone could be as powerful as Katrina - I hope not.

 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4011
Registered: Dec-03
Keep us posted, My Rantz. And keep safe!
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 394
Registered: Nov-05
John thanks, but we're okay here down the bottom end of the state - unless, of course, Larry changes tack (which we know Larrys can do at times). Been quite some years since one has ventured down our neck of the woods.
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4017
Registered: Dec-03
Heard Chick Corea on radio yesterday, great show and selection of music. He talked about listening to jazz and classical when very young, on his father's collection of "78 rpm vinyl".

Please don't all raise your hands at once....

Here is his play list:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio3/privatepassions/pip/ixja9/"

It is also possible to listen to the show, streamed.

I never knew Vladimir Horowitz was a fan of Art Tatum. That cheers one up.
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 396
Registered: Nov-05
"I never knew Vladimir Horowitz was a fan of Art Tatum. That cheers one up."

Phew thanks, I needed that John!


:-)


 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4019
Registered: Dec-03
A pleasure, My Rantz...!

It must be what is called "A little-known fact".
 

Silver Member
Username: Two_cents

Post Number: 738
Registered: Feb-04
John A.,

You're just not going to use the word "factoid", are you.

Last night I listened a record, which in light of John A.'s factoid, is notable for its crossover significance. The album is Ravi Shankar's "Improvisations". He improvises on raga themes with a group consisting of traditional Indian musicians and American jazz musicians, including Bud Shank on flute and Gary Peacock on bass. Amazing stuff. The thought of music transcending cultures is an uplifting one.
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1188
Registered: Oct-04
All: Horowitz was a fan of Tatum because he realized that he could never play that fast. . .I think. (grin)

LR
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4020
Registered: Dec-03
If I recall, the anecdote Chick Corea told was that Horowitz went to Tatum performances whenever they were both in New York. Horowitz was so impressed with one piece that he went home and wrote it down, from memory. He then took his manuscript to Tatum, and played it back to him. Tatum liked it, and said he couldn't remember if it was correct, because he never played anything the same way twice. He then demonstrated by improvising a totally different version.

"The thought of music transcending cultures is an uplifting one."

I agree!

Hey, our topic is alive and well on Future of SACD vs. other hi-res formats.
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1189
Registered: Oct-04
MR - yeah, the scientists are split over whether the increased storm-violence is a result of global warming or simply of natural climate shifts. Either way, we're starting our pre-hurricane planning later this month. Hurricane season begins June 1st. . .

Started to answer you on hi-res thread, realized it was better-suited to the Dogs site. . .

I told Mer that you were urging me to scrap the Camry and buy a very expensive CD player instead. I won't even try to post her comments on this forum, as admin would surely tear them apart! (GRIN)

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1190
Registered: Oct-04
All: Sigh. As expected, my friend Verne was correct. There was some problem with the initial run of the Harman Kardon DVD-47s - and the "official" release date has been pushed back to mid-April. Well, now. . .what kind of player does Verne have? And I posted him to tell me right away if there's anything that is amiss with his copy of the player - obtained from a regional distributor. Hmm. . .

I know - as Jan has reminded me several times: don't get the first run of any new electronics product. It will surely have "bugs." OK - I guess the HK one did have bugs - and they're trying to kill them. . .

So - do I bite the bullet and go for a "hi-end" player that may or may not be really great? Well - - - Mer has something to say about that, and she says that we have "better things to do with our money." Ummm. . .I guess that translates into: "if the Yammie craps out, get something that doesn't cost more than our annual income!" Yep. . .

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 411
Registered: Nov-05
Larry, John A, et al

I mentioned the tenor Bruce Sledge a while back, the tenor who sang the aria "Nessun Dorma" in the Sum of all Fears movie.

Here is his website, opera lovers click on audio for your listening pleasure :

http://www.bsledge.com

Hope this cheers you up Larry while you are going through the CD/DVD player blues :-)


 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1191
Registered: Oct-04
MR - thanks for the link, sir. I see that Mr. Sledge has been in Chicago this season, and I shall ask my friend Toni, who works there, for her review of his performances.

He has a wonderful, clear tone - sorry I did not see/hear the movie in question.

LR
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4039
Registered: Dec-03
Larry, it is a nice movie in which Baltimore is annihilated, as I recall.

My Rantz, I am still agnostic on opera. I usually like the overtures. Then people start singing, for some reason. And they usually have hairstyles like Mr Sledge's.

There was a performance of The Flying Dutchman on the radio in the week. Welsh National Opera. From Cardiff. With Bryn Terfel. The voice-over said it was set in outer space, with the scenery including images, filmed in a Soviet space station, and projected onto mutiple, moving screens.

I cannot get into all that. It is a step I have yet to take.

The future of HiFi. I linked the "iPod HiFi" a while back. Just possibly, we bury our heads in the sand. So, for better, or worse;-

The Washingtom Times. Apple Computer's IPod Hi-Fi is a $349 "boom box" of a stereo that may leave some folks scratching their heads....

I have always left a spare input into our HiFi, complete with mini-jack, for iPods etc. None is ever connected. It is not what they want. If they knew about them, what they would want is one on those, I am sure. I saw one on demo and it played loud. This was in the Regent Street Apple Store which is a sort of audio Dante's Inferno.

Ivor Cutler would surely have understood. RIP. What a man.
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 428
Registered: Nov-05
John, I am with you when it comes to opera, though I do recognize a nice voice. It was a powerful background in the scene where those bad guys became prey to the assassin. So because I had brought up the name I thought I'd add the link that I came across when researching a cd for my dear old mother. So enough sledging of Mr Sledge's hair old boy. If there's to be any sledging it will be expertly executed by our cricket team :-)

 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4041
Registered: Dec-03
My Rantz;- What, in the Winter Olympics?

Oh, I see. Well, yes, let's leave cricket aside for a moment. Or perhaps even longer.

I defend freedom of hairstyle.

However, there is an old saying; "The more on top, the less underneath".

Look at Ivor Cutler, for example.
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1200
Registered: Oct-04
And so I got to wondering - and worrying. . .

Ahem - I was cleaning/polishing/tweaking another of my SACDs this morn, when I chanced to hold it up to the light. Lo and behold - I could see right through the disc! Now, Jan and others may correct me, but I thought there was supposed to be an aluminum layer in the midst of the disc, for the laser to bounce off and "read."

My question - if the layer is thin enough to actually see the label on the other side of the disc, how accurate can the layer be? Is that part of the problem we have with the "perfect sound forever?"

Some input, please. . .

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Parkhill, Ontario Canada

Post Number: 1810
Registered: Dec-04
Does it play, Larry?
It is accurate enough.
The advances of lasers and all things electronic seem to have left some of us disposed.
If I cannot see or feel it, does it exist?

Perhaps yes, or not.

Sure sounds good for a ghost.



 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7984
Registered: May-04


Don - Back to some jazz lessons, please. One of my favorite songs by Blossom Dearie includes the lyric, "Do you synchopate?" Tell me, Don, do you? If so, how? Ahead of or after the beat; what's the difference between synchopation and not being able to count to four?


 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4042
Registered: Dec-03
To "syncopate" means to stress, or accent, a note that falls on what is otherwise more naturally taken as a weak beat.

Tap out four regular, equally-spaced beats, repeated over a few times. The naturally strong beats are numbers one and three, as when marching. 1, 2, 3, 4..... Then keep going, and begin to whistle or hum "The Entertainer" by Scott Joplin. There are three long, accented notes in the first phrase. They fall on beats one-and-a-half, three, and four-and-a-half. The first and third long notes fall on weak half-beats. The phrase is syncopated. Take almost any rag, say "Tiger Rag", and you find syncopation all the way through.

There is another way of looking at it, though, which is to say the tune is in three-time and the beat is in four-time. That would make them "Cross-rhythms" rather than syncopation. It follows, then, that the first, short note of the four-time bar does not have to be accented; on the contrary, it is a weak beat, in its own, three-time melody. That is how Joshua Rifkin achieved that "laid back" effect in Joplin piano rags. There are reasons why this could be a more natural approach, especially in jazz, with its roots in African music, rich in complex cross-rhythms.

Recognising cross-rhythms for what they are makes a world of difference to phrasing of baroque and renaissance music, too. There are good reasons for thinking it is more "authentic". I would pass on whether that is also the case with jazz. Joshua Rifkin was applying good "Early Music" practice to ragtime. Don?

End of lecture, and I know it was not I who was asked.

Apologies, Don!

Anyway, perhaps Miss Dearie was referring to something else...?
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7994
Registered: May-04


Thank you, John. You adequately explained not being able to count to four. Though how much jingoism was involved in the answer is open for debate. (Let's see ... oh yeah, put one of those smiley things here.)




Shall I rephrase the question to; "Do you back beat?"




"Recognising cross-rhythms for what they are makes a world of difference to phrasing of baroque and renaissance music, too. There are good reasons for thinking it is more "authentic"."



Sir, explain this.






 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4045
Registered: Dec-03
Well, the real problem was bar lines. A new-fangled idea of about 1700, to make it easier for people who could not read a line to keep together. As soon as your say that all parts must conform to the same, common time signature, then, if one part starts with a short note, then you assume it is still in the common time signature, so you have to hit it; a little stiletto of attention-grabbing sound. And the long notes that follow it must be "syncopated". Or "back beats" (not sure about that term).

But it may just be that the different parts were in different time signatures, in the first place, each was intended to be phrased accordingly, and each player should ride with it, and enjoy the part they've got. Take away the bar lines and that is what the players are more likely to see, and play.

Then you get cross-rhythms.

Consider "America" by Leonard Bernstein. It alternates between two group of three and three groups of two.

Two groups of three:

I like to be in A-

Three groups of two:

mer-i-ca -

If you divide six equal beats into two groups of three and three groups of two at the same time, in different parts, you get a cross-rhythm called a hemiola. These are common in Bach and Handel, for example, especially in closing phrases and cadences. It is a deliberate rhythmic ambiguity. Modern players tend to think the first beat of the second group of two is a syncopation, and hit it, but not so.

You have a long section, say, in 6/8, and you get used to:

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6,...and so on.

At the end comes, usually in the bass:

1, 2, 3, 4 ,5, 6,....

The accented 3 and 5 are not syncopations, but can be played that way. The real idea I guess, is not to sort of poke you in the eye just before the end, but to make the pulse ambiguous, giving the final synchronous chord a greater sense of resolution; of completing something.

Go back before the baroque and different parts are playing three against two against four and all sorts of things, and all the way through, not just at the end. African drumming is even more complicated, you can have massively complex cross-rhythms with, for example nine against seven or thirteen. And, not only do they not have bar lines, they have no written notation of any sort. As Don, said, you just have to feel it. Syncopation is sort of watering it down; imposing a formal time structure on every part. A bit totalitarian, really.

That's about the best I can do in words. It is probably baffling. The difference is easy and natural in practice. I'll try to find some audio clips.

Oh yes, the clear evidence, in Western music, is when words are set, and the natural phrasing is retained by cross-rhythms, but screwed up by syncopation.

Can't think of a well-known example straight away. Will try.
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 7997
Registered: May-04


I thought "I Got Rhythm" was an example of anything.
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4046
Registered: Dec-03
I'll have to think about that. At first sight it is a good example of a cross rhythmn.

What I learned to call "cross rhythm" seems to be called Polyrhythm in Wikipedia.

There are some illustrative audio clips at the foot of that page. I agree with the commentator that it is ludicrous to begin by citing Frank Zappa.

See also Hemiola.
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4048
Registered: Dec-03
Wikipedia entry for Audiophile.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jazzwannabe

Post Number: 17
Registered: Mar-06
Jan - "Do I syncopate?" Yes, I do.

Every jazz musician or singer, amateur or pro, does. It is one of the basic characteristics of jazz. It leads to the next question, Do you swing? (although, I might caution you that if you ask that question nonchalantly at a party, you might get either a slap in the face or that come-hither wink?
Anyways, back to the subject. To syncopate and to swing, for that matter, come naturally to some musicians, but what I've observed is that it's the hardest thing to do, let alone comprehend, by a clasically-trained musician. I don't mean no offense, but that's based on my personal experience. Also, if anyone here has seen the video of André Previn (piano), Ray Brown (bass), Mundell Lowe (guitar), and Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, you'll know how the 3 jazz gentlemen (Previn himself, of course, is a renowned conductor -- one of my favorites) tried to teach Dame Kanawa to "swing." It was like putting a pair of skiis on someone who's never been on one.

It's not easy to illustrate syncopation, but I did a simple graphic image that you can download by right-clicking on it and click on "Save As..." on your local drive. See below:

Upload

Since you mentioned Gershwin's "I Got Rhythm", I used that as an example. This is a fast four or fast swing.

Count fast: 1, 2... I got rhythm
You should be on the 3rd and 4th count on the words, "I got".

On "rhythm", I broke down the two syllables to illustrate syncopation.
"Rhy" takes two counts (or two beats, 1, 2);
"thm" is right after you hit the 2nd count but just before you get to the 3rd beat. So, "thm" somewhat floats in between the 2nd and 3rd count (or beat). Also, "thm" is accented, although, it's on a weak beat. The strong beats are the 2nd and 4th. Same goes for "music": the second syllable is also sung right after the 2nd beat until the 3rd.

Again, count fast: 1, 2... I got rhythm
1, 2... I got music
1, 2... I got my man
who could ask for anything more

The last phrase falls on regular beats: "ask for" (1, 2);
"any- (two syllables on the 3rd beat);
-thing" (4th beat);
"more" (1 full measure or four beats)

I hope that illustrates syncopation. Feel free to ask more.

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday, all ye Old Dogs.
Don

 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 8017
Registered: May-04


Don - I'm not certain syncopation can be put into the correct words on paper. You either can do it or you will have to learn it by trying.


How about this one? How does a group of players synchopate? Is there an agreed upon format for playing with others? I assume all improvised solos are up to the individual musician; but what about as the melody is laid out at the front and back of a piece of music? Or does everyone just sit back and wonder how Louie Armstrong does it?


 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1210
Registered: Oct-04
Jan et al: Hate to break in on your music thread, but I thought I should inform all of the Old Dogs. do you remember the old professor - Franklin - from the Univ. of Chicago? The one whose apartment was vandalized?

Well, as I think I wrote a while ago, he made up with his long-time ladyfriend, and they moved to a condo out in Golden, Colorado.

Since then - as Mer and I have been thinking seriously of moving back to Colorado - we have been e-mailing every once in a while.

Anyway - tonight I got an e-mail from Carrie, the lady who became Franklin's wife last year. She said that Franklin had died in the hospital yesterday. Apparently he was bitten by a black widow or brown recluse spider, and had a horrible allergic reaction. By the time they got him to the emergency room it was too late.

Carrie said that y'all might want to know. He was a fun and fascinating man, and I shall miss his wisdom.

respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Silver Member
Username: My_rantz

Australia

Post Number: 438
Registered: Nov-05
Larry

I remember about your professor friend. So sorry to hear the news. What a terrible hand fate dealt to poor fellow and his new bride.

M.R.
 

Gold Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 1215
Registered: Oct-04
MR - thanks - I lose too many friends. Sigh. . .

Anyway: CONVERSATION WITH VERNE - this is in reference to Jan's quite excellent comments on CD-cleaning, and my experiments recently.

Called Verne a short time ago - fortunately he's an early riser - and laid out my latest concerns and comments on the CD-cleaning issue, plus my frustrations with CD-player listening.

"Trouble is, you've got the tonal memory of a mud pile." So much for his opening comment. He was never great in the small-talk area - obviously.

Anyway - he said that the Harman-Kardon was still playing and sounding "like honey." I guess that means all is OK.

As to cleaning - he let me have it with both barrels of his considerable shotgun-speech.

I apparently have been doing an OK, but limited, job of CD-smoothing. He OK'd a polymer-based product, which Zaino is, but said I wasn't really doing the job. Huh? How much more should I be doing?

Well, he led me through the mold-release lecture again - and reminded me of his microscope testing, and yada yada. He can be a boor. . .

But then he started to question my cleaning procedures - and quickly told me that I was NOT solving the problem. OK, says I, teach. . .

Turns out he always uses a circular motion to clean the CDS - which, of course, we are told NOT to do. He said radius-swiping only spreads around the gunk. I thought as much. . .

So - here's what he told me to do. Use a tiny dot of the Z-14 on a towel (he only uses the micro-fibre towels now) and then, with light pressure, swirl it around on the disc, covering it in a fine coating.

Do NOT let it dry - he said. Wellll, the Zaino people had told me to let the Z-14 dry, which I did. No-no.

Anyway - once the product is applied, take a clean towel, shake it a couple of times, then begin to "mop" the glop around with a light pressure. I did this with great fear of scratching the disc(s) but I never did. At least yet.

OK, he said, now that the stuff is wiped off, do you feel any "drag" at all when running a clean towel over the disc? If so - start again and clean it. Which I did, and did.

By this time I was seeing something on the discs that had not been there before - a sorta 3-D clarity. Hmm. ..

then I spritzed on the Z-6 and gently wiped it dry.

I called Verne back and we back-and-forthed - and he said that the CDs should sound more "accurate" now. Turns out he cleans every single new CD at least three times before playing.

I awayed to the player - but, as Verne so aptly stated, my tonal memory appears to be mud-pile. (grin?)

However - I swear the discs that I'm super-cleaning DO sound more "accurate." Right now, an opera CD that I'd written off as "mediocre" sounds very smooth. Hmm. . .

So - was I only going part-way with the cleaning? Apparently so.

I asked Verne about the Pledge - and he said that Jan may be on to a good thing - but that he had never used it. He asked if contained wax, and I said I thought not. Wax, Verne said, will soon kill the poly layer - turning yellow with age. OK - no wax.

He'd not used Pledge for Electronics, either - but will research it, he promised.

I asked him for some of his home-made glop, and he just laughed. "Don't ship it anywhere," he said. So much for long-term friendship! (grin)

I've started to re-clean my CDs - and lo and behold, the ones I'm re-doing DO have a deeper shine, and "apparently" better sound quality. We'll see. . . .

Respectfully. . .LarryR
 

Silver Member
Username: Sem

New York USA

Post Number: 569
Registered: Mar-04
Larry, very sorry to read the news about your friend, that's just horrible. I guess there are many land mines we have to step over and around in life, I just never figured spiders would be one of them.
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