[JPL] "From the Plantation to the Penitentiary" - to The JazzStandard?

Jae Sinnett jaejazz at yahoo.com
Wed Mar 7 11:35:50 EST 2007

  Intonation problems are common in this music for various reasons. I think now because of the many discussions we've had on the list about this some would perhaps pay more attention to these things. If so, you'll notice them more. Some are worse than others. Just like time problems.....they're common. 
  Jazz presents a plethora of challenges to the musicians that can bring out the best....and at times the worst in the artist. I don't think Sanon's intonation is that bad really. Not great like Dianne Reeves or Kurt Elling but considering what she is singing over I give her a three out of a five. Be careful not to confuse her intonation with the dissonance underneath her.....particularly in that first track. The song is purposely written and arranged this way and I understand very clearly why someone would say it's out of tune - because the tension makes it sound that way. Listen to the second track and you'll hear a noticeable difference in how she relates to the pitch. In saying this it's also important to note that there is a difference when things are written to sound this way vs sounding this way because the musicians can't play the sections in tune. The most impressive thing for me on this CD is the writing and Wynton's....comparatively....smaller ensemble arranging.
 He out did himself here in my opinion. The vocalist is simply the finishing touch to these deep and provocative stories. 
  Jae Sinnett

"Bradley M. Stone" <bstone at science.sjsu.edu> wrote:
  This Week's JPL Sponsor: SUMMIT RECORDS

Jae et al.,

I'm certainly going to program Wynton's new release, partly because of the strong message - but (going back to our discussion on the intonations of horn and reed players) am I the only one who is having difficulty with Jennifer Sanon's intonation?



From: jazzproglist-bounces at jazzweek.com on behalf of Jae Sinnett
Sent: Tue 3/6/2007 10:24 PM
To: Jazz Programmers Mailing List
Subject: Re: [JPL] "From the Plantation to the Penitentiary" - to The JazzStandard?

This Week's JPL Sponsor: SUMMIT RECORDS


I haven't heard the Douglas you're referring to but what I will say Wynton is not "married" to history on this recording or anything else for that matter. Nor did he "need" a vocalist to tell his story. The story is told the way it is because it was purposely written that way. That was a choice - not a necessity. Perhaps you're misunderstanding is compositional intentions...... What history are you referring to by the way? I don't hear much in this recording that could be relegated to him being "married" to the history. I hear points of departure but isn't that with everyone who plays today? I hear so many different things in his writing that I haven't heard before from him on this recording. His forms, harmonic choices, rhythmic structures are all fresh sounding to me. His organization is amazing on this CD. Then there is that message thing.....it's profound. Perhaps not to you and if there is anything that is for the "moment" this is it.

Now you talk Douglas....I remember his "The Infinite" release and all the critics praising it. From what I heard it was simply an attempt to repeat Miles' late 60's vibe so I mean really....who's married to the history? Douglas plays from a visionary platform which I admire but from a swinging perspective I haven't heard much of it so perhaps that's why he's appealing more to a younger base - in the moment. Swinging phrasing is not the flavor of the moment with most critics today. Nor are II V structures. It seems the more you get away from that concept the more the critics like it. I'm also wondering how objective can critics be with Wynton today? And by the way, who are you addressing when you say..."okay got that, you're both Wynton fans." See, I'm writing to you not around or at you. That's courtesy 101. 

Jae Sinnett

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