Friday, December 4, 2009

ToffeeBoy Goes Jazz!



I've been listening to quite a lot of jazz recently and as I'm feeling utterly uninspired by the carnivorous theme set for us this week, I felt that a little diversion might be in order. So here is, what I hope will be the first in a long-running series, which I'm calling, Regular 'Spillers Post Music That You Wouldn't Really Expect From Them, Knowing Their Musical Tastes A Bit As You Do*. Catchy, ain't it?

So, I will share with you just a small sample of the sort of jazz I like to listen to - I'd be interested to hear what others think - particularly non-jazz fans (although of course I want to know what you think too).

Two artists I particularly like are Dexter Gordon (who will be known to most) and Sahib Shihab who probably won't. The latter was introduced to me (no, not personally) by a friends' father who used to play drums in a jazz three-piece. I've included two tracks by each of these artists, not including my friends' dad but definitely including Dexter Gordon's Cheese Cake which is probably my all-time favourite jazz piece of all time. There's also one on the list, the discovery of which I owe entirely to Herr 'Hachi. So here goes nothing:

Another Samba - The Sahib Shihab Quintet
Soy Califa - Dexter Gordon
The Sidewinder - Lee Morgan
So What - Miles Davis
Diamonds & Pearls - Marcin Wasilewski Trio
Look For The Silver Lining - Chet Baker
Moanin' - Art Blakey
Who'll Buy My Dream - The Sahib Shihab Quintet
Cheese Cake - Dexter Gordon

* Future posts will include:
DarceysDad presents: It's A Rave!
CaroleBristol's An Hour With Coldplay
treefrogdemon and ejaydee's collaborative playlist Death Metal: A New Perspective
RockingMitch introduces: The Beatles - Fuck Yeah!
Maki Does Disco
Sampling with Zag
DaddyPig presents: The Spandex Years
Over-dramatic Pop Ballads (Like Wot They Do On X-Factor) With Special Emphasis On Those Containing A Key Change: An Hour (Or More If You Really Insist) In The Company of Chris
magicman welcomes you to the Battle of the Century - The Killers v U2 v Bartok
tincanman's Guide To The Peruvian Nose Flute

So what would you be least likely to post? I'll add them to the list - but bear in mind that you may have to do them ...

27 comments:

Makinavaja said...

I'm pretty lost when it comes to jazz. I like Bix Beiderbecke (first listened to him because of Alan Plater's novels - weird, huh?), Hoagy Carmichael 'cos my dad likes him. Made my mind up to try out a bit more and have found the Saga label's compilations very useful. They sell at 6 euros per cd. I'm buying one or two a month - indiscriminately of course, I have no-one to guide me - and have found that I like a lot of what I've bought. The sleeve notes (in French and English) are informative and useful to a jazz dullard like me. An unexpected Maki post in the vein you have suggested would have to be Maki does Disco!

ejay said...

Can TFD and I make that a joint post?

zag said...

Sorry, I can't post this anywhere else since I don't know how to initiate a post, so I'll ask here instead - wot, no eotwq this w ?

On the subject of SPMTYWREFT,KTMTABAYD (seriously, you have got to come up with a shorter series name in future) - I would have to volunteer some music 'samples' which a friend of mine recorded off the radio back in the 80s. You know the type - music radio, lively DJ, some comedy/spoof clip for a few minutes to cheer up your commute down the M-something. Anyhoo . . . this guy set up his high-tech tape deck to turn on at 0810 and off at 0813 for a year and had them all on one tape.

Oh, hang on, this is about music, isn't it. Here's the music bit - it was a series of send-ups of lyrics with a bit of distortion thrown in to make it seem real. There was the song Chris de Burgh wrote after painting his living room - "High on Emulsion" (supposed to be high on emotion for all the non Chris de Burgh fans out there), and then there was the one from Simply Red that Mick Hucknall wrote because he was fed up with people making fun of his sticky-out ears - "Holding Back the Ears", and so on. There was also the one about the crab in the recording studio nipping at his heels for almost any Michael Jackson track - what with all the "Ooow"s that he has in his songs.

I'll dig out a tape deck and give it a listen again - I just turned it up by chance tonight.

I've just given away 95% of my CDs over the last week or so - I suddenly realised that while I listen to at least some of them, the vast majority had been sitting there for years unloved and unlistened to and just basically gathering dust, so I reckoned I may as well give them away to charity so some good comes of them. If you happen to be in a Christmas fair in Dublin in the next few weeks and you see a mix of opera, dance (mambo, etc . . .), Bruce, Leadbelly, the odd bit of trance, some jazz, a bit of 80s tinkly bonk and a few others thrown in then you may just have come across my ex-CD collection. Buy a few, it's for a good cause.

z

zag said...

Oh, I should add - long, long ago I bought a Bix Biederbecke CD in a calculated attempt to gain brownie points with my boss who was a *serious* Jazz fan. I remember seeing the CD in a shop and saying "If I buy that and leave it on the desk, he might see it and see that I've got great taste in music too . . ."

It actually worked - a few days later he was going by the desk when he stopped, turned and said "Woah dude, great album, huh ? I never knew you were a Biederbecke fan." To which I could only reply "Mmmm, uh-huh."

The company was taken over a few weeks later and everyone left shortly afterwards. Such was the way of the dot.com years.

z

Makinavaja said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Makinavaja said...

@ Zag - the misheard lyric has a name, mondegreen. I don't know if a post has been done about this before (I'm pretty new here too). If you want to get a conversation going on what I think could be a fun theme, all you have to do is email Blimpy for an invite (rr@broughton3.plus.com>), join up and then write and publish the post. Don't forget to include a picture, I got that wrong first time around! I lived to tell the tale, though...

Abahachi said...

I'd be interested in suggestions as to what music you really wouldn't expect from me knowing my musical tastes a bit as you do, like.

ToffeeBoy said...

OK - how about:

Abahachi's Best Of The Boy Bands

Featuring Take That, Westlife, Boyzone, Backstreet Boys, East17 etc...

Chris said...

Can I do one about my favourite genre: 'Over-dramatic Pop Ballads (Like Wot They Do On X-Factor) With Special Emphasis On Those Containing A Key Change'?

Abahachi said...

Oh dear god. And I was about to say nice things about your jazz selection, too...

ToffeeBoy said...

@ Abahachi - oh, go on, say those nice things! Have you heard Sahib Shihab - I have a whole album of him (and his quintet) which I'll gladly share.

ToffeeBoy said...

@ Chris - you're on. I'm looking forward to hearing it ...

Chris said...

Love the textures in the Marcin Wasilewski Trio number. Being a small unit, they seem more together, to my ears, than most of the other ensembles where it's a case of solo-over-chord-sequence improv. Miles I already love but am also impressed by Art Blakey. Not very keen on the Sahib Shihab Quintet first number, but the second is a lot better.
Cheese Cake is a good groove!

Thanks for the music, TB. But 'An Hour (Or More If You Really Insist) In The Company of Chris' An hour? WTF?!

ToffeeBoy said...

@ Chris - you'll have to thank Abahachi for the Marcin Wasilewski Trio.

And as for the 'Hour (Or More...), look, it's my game so you'll do as you're told. OK?

Chris said...

Well, if I'm doing as I'm told: Thank you, Abahachi.

ejaydee said...

I'm digging the Sahib.

DaddyPig said...

I'm looking forward to listening to this ToffeeBoy, a few I don't know. My post below on the northern social CDs has musings on our dislikes and how dear they can be to us. So you can add "DaddyPig - The Spandex Years" for me.

ToffeeBoy said...

@ DaddyPig - no sooner said than done.

@ tincanman - you're being very quiet on the subject of the Peruvian Nose Flute. Come on, man! Don't deny your culture!

magicman said...

My jazz knowledge is my usual approach to a new genre - follow my nose but try and at least listen to the classic stuff. As defined by - I dunno, whatever I've just read, A John Fordham picture book about Jazz which tells you what the most influential, best, important, great or whatever LPs were in each movement and development of the music.
I got into Duke Ellington at college and he's still my favourite jazzer. Astounding tunes, arrangements, ideas, moods and joy.
Dexter Gordon I also like but I've only got the Round Midnight soundtrack ! Recently got into Sidewinder and Kenny Burrell. Favourite players would include Charlie Parker, Stan Getz and John Coltrane. I discovered a chap called Rabih Abou Khalil supporting Hadjik de Taidouks or whatevr they're called, a Lebanese oud player with an amazing band of jazzers from all over the world - including a young american drummer who was astounding. Would be my obscure but good music tip.
My least likely playlist would probably be (today) the Killers meet U2 at a Bartok concert.
eek

DaddyPig said...

Thanks ToffeeBoy and hope you're reasonably happy with 2-2 today.

I hadn't heard of Sahib Shihab, but "Who'll Buy My Dream" is sounding very good.

Interesting to compare the two ten-minute Blue Note tracks: Moanin' has a great tune and Bobby Timmons' piano solo is one of my favourites; but I think "Sidewinder" does better at building the tension and variation; like the horns coming in for the 3rd chorus of Barry Harris's piano solo (which is also a brilliant and simple thing).

The Marcin Wasilewski is great and I hadn't heard of him either. I looked up "Look For The Silver Lining" and discovered it's a Jerome Kern song which I didn't know(though he's a favourite songwriter). And I found the Judy Garland version too. Judy Garland version I shouldn't be ungrateful to Chet Baker, as he's given me one of my few B-listings, but you can't beat Judy's singing and her way with a phrase.

I liked "Cheesecake" too. Have you seen Dexter Gordon in "Round Midnight" ? Great film - not much happens, as I remember, it's all about the (eponymous) mood and feel.

Cheers TB, lots of new stuff for me here.

ToffeeBoy said...

@ magicman - I like the sound of Rabih Abou Khalil (may his tribe increase). I was going to suggest that you post something for the class to hear, but you'll probably turn round and say that you did just that two weeks ago, and I'll end up looking silly (for a change).

I'm adding your strangely intriguing playlist suggestion as we speak. I'm sure it 'll be a doozy...

@ DaddyPig - thanks for all the feedback (I'm ashamed to say that I've never see Round Midnight - I may add it to my Christmas Wish List).

I think I'm right in saying that the drummer in the Sahib Shihab Quintet is Kenny Clarke and the pianist is Francy Boland - I also seem to remember that Who'll Buy My Dream is their (joint?) composition. I could google it but it's probably easire to wait to be corrected by someone more knowledgeable...

DaddyPig said...

There are too many films and tunes out there, whatever one has not seen or heard, there's nothing to be ashamed of !

ToffeeBoy said...

@ DaddyPig - thanks - forgot to say earlier, yes, I'm happy enough with 2-2 today. In fact if you'd offered me that at 2-0 down with quarter of an hour to go, I'd probably have bitten your hand off!

Abahachi said...

Sorry it's taken me a while to comment properly; unspeakably horrible times in work at the moment. I know most of these quite well, but it's always good to hear them again; on the basis of the Morgan and Blakey, I'm inclined to ask whether you've heard Horace Silver's Song for my Father album, which I think is one of the very best 'hard bop' albums, and from the combination of Chet Baker and Marcin Wasilewski I'd suggest my all-time favourite trumpet player Tomasz Stanko, whose approach is often compared to Baker (plus a chunk of Miles) and whose backing band for the previous three albums was Wasilewski and friends - I particularly love the Soul of Things record. I'm afraid I'm not yet convinced by Sahib Shabib - but am I right in thinking that he played for the Clark-Boland Big Band for a while, as well as having them on his record as noted above?

tincanman said...

Just got to these Tboy. They're quite relaxing, which hopefully was the intention. I like jazz but confess its more of a background music - which I know is a heresy.

ToffeeBoy said...

@ Abahachi - thanks for the feedback. I will definitely investigate Horace Silver - he's someone I know I've heard of but not knowingly heard. Likewise Tomasz Stanko - not that I've even heard the name.

I think you're right about Sahib Shihab's involvement with the Clark-Boland Big Band by the way.

@ tincanman - not heresy in my book, but if anyone thinks otherwise you could claim you meant hearsay.

tincanman said...

Good idea toffee. I'll tell 'em I heard you say it