Musicality – Listening Pt2

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Musicality – Listening Pt2

Swing music suggestion

This post was inspired by Rob McElvanney’s response on Facebook to the original post

I was thinking about this article the other day while listening to some music and “blues my naughty sweetie gave to me” by Sidney Bechet is a great example. Really simple beat chugging along with drums and bass throughout. The interplay between the instruments and the building tension really pushes you to get more involved, especially when dancing, even though the beat and tempo remain the same. Some amazing solo performances too. 5 minutes and 46 seconds never wasted.”

I’ll go into tempo, tension and dynamics in other posts but I thought I’d break this track down to basics first by listening and making a note of what and when. To keep things simple there are no counts or time notes.

How I hear it

Piano, double bass and, drums start this song off and play a lovely introduction before,
the trumpet comes in and plays the melody line.
There’s a quiet trombone just before the saxophone and trombone join in. The saxophone is playing a counter-melody to the trumpet and the trombone is filling the gaps with a little call and response. This builds to a crescendo and then…
Back to the piano, double bass and drums.
There’s a repeat performance by the trumpet, trombone and saxophone and then,
saxophone solo (with the piano, double bass and drums).
The trumpet and trombone rejoin briefly and the saxophone solo continues.
Then a trumpet solo. This is then accompanied by the trombone and saxophone playing long notes.
The trombone takes the solo with the trumpet and saxophone playing quiet accompaniment before they come in for a bit of a jam at the end.

That’s five minutes and forty-two seconds summed up.

What did I learn?

The song has a definite rise and fall even with the steady rhythm of the piano, double bass and drums. The three additional instruments, saxophone, trumpet and trombone change the energy levels within the track just by being there or not, and that’s without talking about what they are playing musically.

How can I use this?

I can use the addition of instruments to increase my energy and the removal to decrease my energy. But only if I’m listening.

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