[JPL] Branford/A Love Supreme

Jae Sinnett jaejazz at yahoo.com
Tue Mar 8 19:07:59 EST 2005


In reading some of Branford's words in reference to "A Love Supreme," I completely understand why few musicians have attempted to perform it. Even though the harmonic challenges of some of Trane's classics such as "Giant Steps" and "Countdown" were/are to this day thought provoking and challenging to many musicians - they present tangible musical systems for study and comprehension.You can see.... lets say the 16 bars and how the progressions are spelled out. This can be intellectualized which consequently helps the musician to create a more logical musical reproduction.
 
The difficulty in "A Love Supreme" with it's minor blues sensibility, is the intangible. This was the first recording I heard that truly transcends the actual musical applications of performance. "A Love Supreme" changed the way musicians deal with the spiritual aspects of creating and what that means. Perhaps even more simply, recognizing that it exists in the first place. In a bizarre way I personally don't think if "A Love Supreme" were more harmonically and rhythmically challenging on paper it would have achieved the godly status it did. I think the simplicity of these elements freed each to perform completely from an emotional platform. It just happened - not contrived or preconceived. "A Love Supreme" also showed how revealing jazz music is. What other recording exposed the soul as such?
 
Each one of these musicians had a profound relationship with their spirituality. Plus, the confluence of certain life experiences - bad and good - with them came together on that day. I'm not sure if one can say, okay I think we're ready to do "A Love Supreme" and sincerely expect it to work. Time and experiences have an interesting way in letting us know what we're ready to deal with. That time came for Branford's quartet.  
 
Jae Sinnett     

"Jackson, Bobby" <bjackson at wcpn.org> wrote:
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My 2 year old son bugs every morning to play that Branford DVD. "Papa,
Papa.....Doom, DOOM, Doom, DOOM!"
He's got great taste!!

Bobby Jackson



-----Original Message-----
From: Lazaro Vega [mailto:wblv.wblu.fm at gmail.com] 
Sent: Tuesday, March 08, 2005 12:20 AM
To: jazzproglist at jazzweek.com
Subject: Re: [JPL] Branford Marsalis: Chasing a runaway 'Trane

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Dog Communications, Inc.
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That's some recording, the DVD version. 

Lazaro Vega



On Wed, 31 Dec 1969 20:19:41 -0400, Steve Schwartz
wrote:
> ************************************************
> This week's sponsor is: Burnin' Down The House Records
> *************************************************
> The Jazz Programmers Mailing List is a free service provided by Yellow

> Dog Communications, Inc.
> For more information visit us at http://jpl.yellowdog.com To become a

> sponsor contact Tony Gasparre at tony at yellowdog.com or 585-235-4685.
> 
> *************************************************
> >From The Independent (UK):
> 
> Branford Marsalis: Chasing a runaway 'Trane
> 
> The saxophonist Branford Marsalis tells Martin Longley why he has 
> taken on John Coltrane's visionary masterpiece A Love Supreme
> 
> 04 March 2005
> 
> Branford Marsalis is sitting in the coffee space of New York's 
> Sterling Sound recording studios. His hands are flat on the table, his

> mind focused, his mouth primed to set off on a speech about the 
> current state of music, jazz in particular, and art in general. His 
> brother Wynton may have the reputation for controversy, but the 
> saxophonist is equally opinionated, with a markedly more modernist
approach to the music.
> 
> Even though he's the eldest of pianist Ellis Marsalis's offspring, 
> Branford appears youthful, preferring Hip-Hop casual to studiously 
> be-suited. He is about to sit in on a mastering session for 
> saxophonist Miguel Zenon's new album, to be released on his own
Marsalis Music imprint.
> 
> Branford was signed to Columbia for nearly two decades before 
> realising the best survival technique was to found his own outlet. 
> Late last year, he released the evocative Eternal, an album devoted to

> ballads. Many such albums are mellow and bland, but Eternal's 
> bittersweet mix of desolation and ecstasy, the music swirling with a 
> sense of barely-concealed tension, captures the secret of romantic
wistfulness.
> 
> Branford's latest release is a DVD and CD of his quartet's storming 
> live performance of A Love Supreme, recorded at Amsterdam's Bimhuis 
> Club. Filmed on the second night of their residency, the cameras prowl

> around in a murk of tasteful lighting, at the service of the music 
> rather than distracting with quick MTV-style edits. Included on the 
> DVD is a lengthy conversation between Branford and 
> multi-instrumentalist Alice Coltrane, John's widow and collaborator.
> 
> "It all happened by accident," Branford recalls. "We were in Paris, 
> and I got into this debate with a writer there. He was saying, what do

> you think of European jazz? He went into this long-winded thing about 
> America not being an inspiration any more. He was basically saying 
> that jazz can be whatever we want it to be. I said, look man, I'd just

> like to hear them play something like A Love Supreme. And he says, I 
> haven't heard you play A Love Supreme. I said, well, you comin' to the

> concert tonight? All right. You'll hear it. So, I tell the guys in the

> band, we're playing A Love Supreme tonight, and they're, like, cool. 
> We played it before. Nuthin' special. But this time it just clicked, 
> as a group. It was magical. We were exhausted at the end of it. I bit
through my lip and didn't realise until the next day.
> There was dried blood all over the mouthpiece. One of the ways that 
> jazz musicians have gone wrong is that we no longer address the 
> physical reality of playing as a group. It was great to be in a moment

> where we had transcended that physical threshold to the point that I 
> could bite through my lip, and not even realise it because of the zone

> that we were in. That was when I made the decision that we should
record it."
> 
> They performed the work a couple of times at New York's Village
Vanguard.
> "It's not the kind of piece you play gratuitously. It's too difficult!
> That's why people avoid it. Everything else you play pales into 
> insignificance."
> 
> "But I don't buy into the sacrosanct bullshit," he sneers, pondering 
> why few players dare to approach this work. "It's not a coincidence to

> me that the majority of the Coltrane that is embraced is the stuff 
> from the Atlantic period, because it's the music that can be easily 
> codified. I don't buy it, I think they're just afraid of the piece. 
> That's why we went after it. I didn't know whether we had the stuff to

> play it, but you only live once. I'm not going to be a punk and hide 
> in a closet. 'Well, I'm only interested in my own music.' All these 
> catchphrases that you hear, they're just metaphors for fear of being 
> exposed as a person who is not thorough enough in research, not
thorough enough in an understanding of history."
> 
> Marsalis now has a steely-eyed view of his place in the jazz 
> firmament. He looks back on youthful folly, rejecting where necessary,

> applauding himself where he thinks it's deserved. "We did a version of
A Love Supreme in 1991.
> It was a failure. I didn't know enough about the blues.
> 
> "Coltrane grew up in Hamlet, North Carolina, an immensely segregated 
> small town. In a place like that, you can assume that every thing that

> has to do with black America can be found in a one-mile strip: the 
> houses, the juke joints, the church. It's hot as bejeezus, so the 
> windows are open. As a kid, if you play on the street you can't help 
> but hear whatever's going on. This is before clubs were sent to zoned 
> districts. There was a bar right next to our house. They'd swing the 
> doors open and the majority of the people are outside on the street, 
> and the music is coming out of the door... You'd hear the church 
> music, the blues, the gospel shit, and it just became a part of you. 
> We're now in a period where people call themselves jazz musicians and 
> they don't have any relationship to that experience. We can't go back
in time, though. That's not what I'm suggesting."
> 
> The usual Marsalis album gameplan is to mix standards and original 
> compositions, with writing duties divided up between the leader, 
> pianist Joey Calderazzo, bassist Eric Revis and drummer Jeff 'Tain' 
> Watts. This is a stable line-up that enjoys an intuitive rapport,
built up over many years.
> 
> Later that night, Marsalis began another week at the Village Vanguard.

> The quartet launched straight into a ferociously intense opening 
> statement, with Branford's extended solo tackling every intimate 
> corner of the cramped space.
> 
> Marsalis is amused when some audience members have a problem dealing 
> with the fact that the quartet laugh a lot when they're performing. "I

> have no compunction to give them a visual aid. Some people are put off

> that we act like a bunch of asses up there. Some people are 
> frustrated, because they're coming to hear African-American classical
music."
> 
> ************************************************
> This week's sponsor is: Burnin' Down The House Records
> *************************************************
> As a follow up to their critically acclaimed debut 'The Last
Farewell', the Los Angeles collective, Shapes, returns with an ambitious
two-cd set entitled, 'The Big Picture', and once again, they've teamed
up with Yellowjackets bassist and two-time Grammy winner, Jimmy Haslip
as producer. Split along stylistic lines into two discs, the first disc
is an eclectic mix of groove-oriented material and the second, showcases
the band's more acoustic mainstream jazz sound. This shape-shifting
ensemble has managed to cover several bases while still retaining their
signature sound, forged in the unique chemistry of Tollak Ollestad's
chromatic and blues harmonica playing, recently featured on Al Jarreau's
current CD 'Accentuate The Positive' and Roger Burn's vibraphone,
marimba and piano work, recently featured on the Smash hit movie
'Sideways', alongside a band of stellar players and special guests
including Jimmy Haslip, fellow Yellowjackets Russell Ferrante and Robben
Ford along with valve trombonist Mike Fahn, Cannonball Adderley's
drummer, Roy McCurdy, vocalist Pauline Wilson (Seawind) accompanied by
Matt Catingub on alto and even a track featuring L.A. mainstays, the
Jack Mack and The Heart Attack Horns.
> 
> www.shapesmusic.com
> 
> Radio add date: February 21, 2005 - Street date: March 8, 2005
> 
> Radio promotion by New World 'n' Jazz
> 
> Contact: Neal Sapper 415 453-1558 / Matt Hughes 732 290-3830
> 
> Publicity: Michael Bloom Media Relations: musicpr at earthlink.net
> 
> Management, Booking and Marketing consulting by Steve Belkin / Open 
> All Nite Entertainment
> 
> info at openallnite.com , www.openallnite.com.
> *************************************************
>
************************************************
This week's sponsor is: Burnin' Down The House Records
*************************************************
As a follow up to their critically acclaimed debut 'The Last Farewell',
the Los Angeles collective, Shapes, returns with an ambitious two-cd set
entitled, 'The Big Picture', and once again, they've teamed up with
Yellowjackets bassist and two-time Grammy winner, Jimmy Haslip as
producer. Split along stylistic lines into two discs, the first disc is
an eclectic mix of groove-oriented material and the second, showcases
the band's more acoustic mainstream jazz sound. This shape-shifting
ensemble has managed to cover several bases while still retaining their
signature sound, forged in the unique chemistry of Tollak Ollestad's
chromatic and blues harmonica playing, recently featured on Al Jarreau's
current CD 'Accentuate The Positive' and Roger Burn's vibraphone,
marimba and piano work, recently featured on the Smash hit movie
'Sideways', alongside a band of stellar players and special guests
including Jimmy Haslip, fellow Yellowjackets Russell Ferrante and Robben
Ford along with valve trombonist Mike Fahn, Cannonball Adderley's
drummer, Roy McCurdy, vocalist Pauline Wilson (Seawind) accompanied by
Matt Catingub on alto and even a track featuring L.A. mainstays, the
Jack Mack and The Heart Attack Horns.

www.shapesmusic.com

Radio add date: February 21, 2005 - Street date: March 8, 2005

Radio promotion by New World 'n' Jazz

Contact: Neal Sapper 415 453-1558 / Matt Hughes 732 290-3830

Publicity: Michael Bloom Media Relations: musicpr at earthlink.net

Management, Booking and Marketing consulting by Steve Belkin / Open All
Nite Entertainment

info at openallnite.com , www.openallnite.com.
*************************************************
************************************************
This week's sponsor is: Burnin' Down The House Records
*************************************************
As a follow up to their critically acclaimed debut 'The Last Farewell', the Los Angeles collective, Shapes, returns with an ambitious two-cd set entitled, 'The Big Picture', and once again, they've teamed up with Yellowjackets bassist and two-time Grammy winner, Jimmy Haslip as producer. Split along stylistic lines into two discs, the first disc is an eclectic mix of groove-oriented material and the second, showcases the band's more acoustic mainstream jazz sound. This shape-shifting ensemble has managed to cover several bases while still retaining their signature sound, forged in the unique chemistry of Tollak Ollestad's chromatic and blues harmonica playing, recently featured on Al Jarreau's current CD 'Accentuate The Positive' and Roger Burn's vibraphone, marimba and piano work, recently featured on the Smash hit movie 'Sideways', alongside a band of stellar players and special guests including Jimmy Haslip, fellow Yellowjackets Russell Ferrante and Robben Ford along with valve
 trombonist Mike Fahn, Cannonball Adderley's drummer, Roy McCurdy, vocalist Pauline Wilson (Seawind) accompanied by Matt Catingub on alto and even a track featuring L.A. mainstays, the Jack Mack and The Heart Attack Horns.

www.shapesmusic.com

Radio add date: February 21, 2005 - Street date: March 8, 2005

Radio promotion by New World 'n' Jazz

Contact: Neal Sapper 415 453-1558 / Matt Hughes 732 290-3830

Publicity: Michael Bloom Media Relations: musicpr at earthlink.net

Management, Booking and Marketing consulting by Steve Belkin / Open All Nite Entertainment

info at openallnite.com , www.openallnite.com.
*************************************************




		
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