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How much jazz was there in these classic rock artists?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Andrew J, Apr 30, 2021.

  1. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England

    I feel you are being too genre minded to reach truth. You pit the genres against each other somehow and I can't make sense of it. I like the genres, but I think you have a closed mind about whether 1oo years of jazz improvising made any difference to anything, jazz, pop, rock, or other music. And the support for your position is that there was improv in other musical forms in human history? To me that's ridiculous.

    "albeit to a lesser extent"
    "It may never have developed as a central feature"

    So why are you comparing it to Jazz which is not that at all? Oh, it's the straw man.
     
  2. trd

    trd Forum Resident

    Location:
    Berkeley
    And of course some jazz fans are just as invested in keeping the rock and roll riff raft out so they can continue to claim that their preferred genre is musically superior. In college when I was running sound for rock bands we called these guys “Jazzers” and even had tshirts made up to mock their snobbish superiority. Quite a bit of that attitude on display in this thread.
     
    bzfgt and ATR like this.
  3. chervokas

    chervokas Forum Resident

    I would caution against trying to draw too many conclusions about the early state of jazz (or blues) from records. Records have long been a lagging indicator, and I think that was especially true in the 1920s, and especially with "race" music.

    The first jazz was by a white band, and it was a novelty performance full of barnyard effects. But you can't draw a conclusion from that that jazz in its earliest state was European-American novelty barnyard music. I wouldn't even necessarily assume that recordings of 2 and 3 minute lengths necessarily effectively represent the music the way it was performed either.

    I agree that improvisation is crucial to what makes jazz jazz -- jazzing a tune was a verb early on, and it meant to improvise collectively on the melody. But it also meant performing with a certain kind of syncopated rhythm feel, which I think is not necessarily less important (though it's true that the rhythm aspect of jazz has changed a lot, modes of improvisation have changed a lot too, but not the fact of improvisation; though it's also true that orchestrated, not improvised, jazz is just about as old as jazz itself.
     
  4. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    Well I think of Buddy Bolden I guess as a notional start. There were no "jazz songs" so to speak of, if it was only coming into being, AFAIK it was trad songs "jazzed" up which to me means improv.

    Orchestrated jazz of the 20s is there, for sure, but what does it mean? To me it's just style and crossover A&R wishes, experiments, lots of stuff happens, and some of it sells. But not all of it has meaning for the evolution of jazz.
     
  5. chervokas

    chervokas Forum Resident

    It means improv, it means a certain rhythm likely too, though we'll never know what Buddy Bolden sounded like, and I think anything could be jazzed -- traditional songs, popular songs, classical themes.

    Yeah but Fletcher Henderson's music with Don Redman certainly has plenty of meaning for the evolution of jazz, that was formally composed and structured stuff, with room for solos too, and it begat the later big band orchestrated swing of Goodman et al. If you haven't read Jeffry Magee's Uncrowned King of Swing, I think it offers a highly valuable counterpoint to some early writing on orchestrated jazz by Gunther Schuller and others, and very valuable insights into the way jazz specific orchestration and arrangement grew out of stock arrangements. So too even George Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue for Paul Whiteman's band (really, Ellington, as a writer of long form music and suites, wished he could have been as artistically successful). Of course, even back then, the polemical battles over "what is jazz" were already on and orchestrated jazz was challenged as being "not jazz," as most new things in jazz have been.
     
    drad dog likes this.
  6. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    I think you're misreading me. I have no need to "pit genres against each other," especially the genres in question as I thoroughly love Jazz and Rock, as well as Blues and Classical.

    Nor am I denying the jazz influence on other genres. I post was made early on in this thread that said virtually all 20th century (and by extension current) music owes some debt to jazz. I didn't disagree with that either.

    I have no bloody Idea what "So why are you comparing it to Jazz which is not that at all?" means because the comparing was done regarding improv, which by your own insistence most definitely is jazz!

    I also don't know why you don't like the statements
    "albeit to a lesser extent"
    "It may never have developed as a central feature"
    since the question in this thread centers around "how much," which implies everything lies somewhere on a continuum. None of this is black and white, just as there are blurred lines between genres.

    Worst of all, you create a total strawman with "you have a closed mind about whether 1oo years of jazz improvising made any difference to anything, jazz, pop, rock, or other music." I have never denied, nor would I, that jazz improvising has had an influence on all these forms of music. Never said it. Never even implied it. All I've said is that improve comes from more than just one source (undeniable), and those who add improv into their bucket of musical tricks could have taken their inspiration from jazz or not from jazz (logically sound based on the irrefutable underlying truth).

    Also not sure what you're complaining about with reference to discussing genres... that's what this whole thread is about. Your posts are every bit as much insistent about what a genre is or isn't (jazz in particular) as mine and your entire argument rests on jazz is improv.

    Anybody who took their cue from jazz to go ahead and improv, then yes, they are influenced by jazz. I've never denied that. But we're talking about "how much" here. Simply deciding to improv doesn't make your music jazzy if you're still living entirely within a blues scale. It's still blues! Now if you take on jazz melody, jazz harmony, and jazz rhythm, then you're displaying a broader range of jazz infusion than just improvising over non jazz musical elements.
     
  7. ATR

    ATR Senior Member

    Location:
    Baystate
    That would not have been from me or my post. I specifically said as well that when the borders between a lot of musical areas of activity were breaking down in the 60's and 70's there was some highly creative music being made by rock musicians that had little or nothing to do with jazz. Sorry if you read that into what I had to say, but I'm reading into what you had to say based on your quoting my post out of context. I'm used to having quite a bit of the music I enjoy dismissed as atonal noise.
     
    bzfgt likes this.
  8. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    This is where you lose me. Improv is the main stream of jazz, in other genres it may be a trick. By calling it a trick, you show your hand. It was a philosophy and a craft and a lifestyle for jazz musicians. They added new sounds and ideas through it, they quoted music, for 100 years through many styke changes. The only thing that stayed consistent was the need to be in the moment. It was the medium of jazz though time, not a trick.
     
  9. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    They are qualifiers that let you ignore my statement that Jazz had a 100 years history that makes it not those thing at all, and much more focued on improv than those things. With enough qualifiers you can prove anything.
     
  10. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    You are saying other genres have comparable histories of improvisation with jazz but I just don't see that. You will say that the incidence is less but so what. I wlll say the evidence is on my side.
     
  11. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    Another strawman. I didn't say they have "comparable histories of improvisation with jazz." I said that there was/is improv there. As long as there is some, we can't automatically conclude that all improve is the result of jazz. And again, even if it is, improving blues is still blues.
     
  12. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    Okay, my colloquialism was not the best way to communicate my point to you. But that in no way diminishes the overall point that whether or not one chooses to improv may or may not have been a jazz influence, and that even if it was, playing blues or rock with some improve thrown in is still more blues or rock than it is jazz based on the elements that make up music. Improv is just another way of expressing rock, just as it was a way of expressing blues or classical before jazz existed.
     
  13. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    This is where I think you get genrefied: Blues is in jazz. A solo of blues notes may be blues but it may be jazz or pop or rock depending on context. I have already asked for what these elements are (Jazz melody, jazz harmony, and jazz rhythm,) but they are elusive and I don't think you will be able to say them.

    But how can you determine with whom and when this influence occurs or does not? Is it all rhetorical? I don't think it can be found in music theory.
     
  14. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    I've not ignored your statement at all.
    I've never ignored the role of improv in jazz.
    But no matter what, improve isn't, and never was, the exclusive domain of jazz.
     
  15. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    Blues is in jazz.... right! Just as blues was improving before there was jazz.
    We also can't ignore music theory. If someone chooses to play 10 minutes of a minor pentatonic scale, he's clearly influenced by blues! Improv just adds a compositional means for expressing his bluesness!
     
  16. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    You have been making this case a lot. You mention a genre and say you proved something. The thing you are proving is that "all improv does not come from jazz."

    If that's all it is, then I'm ok and there's no argument.
     
  17. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    We don't know much about the blues in pre-recorded history. But what does this have to do wtih jazz over the last 100 years?
     
  18. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    The quality of your improv will depend on your craft and skill and how wide open the field is musically.

    To ignore 100 years of jazz innovation just to try to prove that they are "not the only improv game in town" is pretty silly to me and just ignores the effect of the history of musical synthesis over time.
     
  19. Absolutely. One just needs to listen to them.
     
  20. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    It doesn't need to have anything to do with jazz over the last 100 years. The point is that improv has always been around, and therefore not all improv can be assumed to have come from jazz.

    From the first time I picked up a trumpet in 6th grade, I loved to improv... and I'd never even heard of jazz! Nor was I yet listening to any of the rock groups listed here which may or may not have been influenced by jazz. Actually I'd had no exposure to any music outside purely non improvisational forms like 50s rock and roll, country and the pop of the day. I just wanted to improv all on my own.
     
  21. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    Again, I have no idea why you keep insisting I've ignored the effect of history. I've repeatedly stated my agreement with the assertion that most jazz has improvisation as a construct, and I've not denied that any particular artist has had a jazz influence. But just assuming that somebody improving their other form is automatically the result of jazz is as lazy as dismissing jazz would be, and then subsequent to that, that somehow taking up improv even if led to do so by jazz, suddenly makes blues or rock jazz rather than blues or rock. It's still blues or rock, just delivered differently.

    My God man, I really have zero reason to diminish the import of jazz... it is through and through my favorite music! In all it's forms. New Orleans, early jazz, traditional jazz, bop, hard bop, post bop, big band, swing, avant garde, free jazz, jazz funk, jazz blues, third stream, soul jazz... I love it all! I have had more posts on these forums on jazz threads than all others combined. I spend most of my listening time with jazz. I know where it came from, the path it took, and the importance of improv in it. I love hearing jazz influences in the other genres I listen to and quickly acknowledge them. I acknowledge when I hear improv in other forms and if it's done well, I'm thrilled for its inclusion. If the inspiration to do so came from jazz, then I'm thankful.

    I think we're equally intent on genrefication.... I'm just defining a genre by the music itself while you're defining it by the process rather than the result. For me, the product is what it is, regardless of the method employed to get it there.
     
  22. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    As far as I know in Jazz people improvise around jazz, rock, classical and other modes. It sounds like you must have a brain caliper to measure which is which. but I sure don't. When you hear a band do you think about what genre they are in every moment? Can the genre change while you are listening?
     
  23. evillouie

    evillouie Forum Resident

    Location:
    Toledo
    I’m surprised no one has mentioned Bill Bruford yet. Hugely influenced by jazz, and it came through in every band he’s played with. He especially shows his jazz chops with his band Earthworks, and also in his collaborations with Patrick Moraz.
     
    RLPATTON likes this.
  24. drad dog

    drad dog Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    It's fair that I can't define it musicologically, but more by process.

    Man, you are definitely ignoring the relationship of the jazz industry on the rest of the music industry, and jazzers on other players. Context. The Allman bros had a number of full LP side songs. That didn't happen without the example of Jazz LPs.
     
  25. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    You're right. Jazz people can improvise around any genre they have knowledge of or experience with. Guys like John Scofield and Mike Stern can improv around rock with the best of 'em. Ditto Kenny Burrell with blues and Bela Fleck with bluegrass. And that's just the stringed instrument guys! All very true.

    And no, when I listen to music, I just listen to the music. I don't worry about genre. I love music that is pure in genre and I love music that straddles two or more genres. Sometimes I think I like the latter more because being free of a particular genre seems to offer more opportunity for broader creativity. And yes, it can change within the space of a single listen. Fluid music can be very satisfying.

    Now when it comes time to discuss or analyze the music, then genre is likely to be a part of the discussion. Especially when a thread title has genre in its title and is at the core of it's reason for being.
     

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