Anybody into listening to (or playing) jazz?
I love jazz, but I am quite uninformed as far as history and depth of knowledge. I mostly tend to go with artists such as Miles Davis and Herbie Hancock when it comes to older stuff. For more modern day jazz, I’m really digging The Bad Plus and Indigo Jam Unit.
I have a jazz radio show at my university that I feel is relatively diverse, but I would love to hear any artist or song recommendations.
I’ve never heard of the Indigo Jam Unit. Who plays in it? How would you describe their music?
Some of you out there may enjoy Kind of Bloop. It’s a recreation of “Kind of Blue” using an 8-bit soundchip.
As for Jazz knowledge, I’m in the same boat as Benjamin.
I’m jazz adjacent… I listen to far more bands influenced by elements of jazz than I listen to pure jazz groups. Don Caballero being the greatest thing a relative jazz influence, or music in general, has ever produced.
Who’s Don Caballero?
I’ll try to check the link, Grease. Love Kind of Blue.
All I know about Indigo Jam Unit is that they are a Japanese group, but if you like The Bad Plus, I can guarantee you’ll enjoy IJU. I’d suggest a quick youtube search for your own confirmation.
I live the funky/groove aspects of The Bad Plus as well the attempts to cover contemporary pop/rock stuff, but I haven’t been really thrilled from what I’ve heard from The Bad Plus. I’ll try to check out some stuff from IJU.
Don Caballero is, “…the greatest thing a relative jazz influence, or music in general, has ever produced.”Haven’t Lived
Not the new incarnation, though. That’s barely music.
Also…PigletFlying LuttenbachersGrand UlenaEphel Duath
All influenced by elements of jazz, but none of them playing jazz. They usually are able to pull off a more diverse sound, and have fuller compositions, in my opinion.
El Fan, thanks for the links. I’ll definitely check these groups out. I often like “jazz-influenced” music, too.
Are you fan of Dolphy’s or just that album in particular? For some reason, Out to Lunch never really grabbed me, and I liked some of the more abstract post-bop jazz of that period (e.g. Andrew Hill). I like Dolphy, but I tend to his stuff on the Presige (I think) label when he played with Booker Little. There are also some great moments with Dolphy and Coltrane playing live together.
I’m a jazz illiterate, sorry, i don’t know much Dolphy otherwise, but i really like Anoaur Brahem, the modern Tunisian oud player and composer. So you might want to give Le Pas du Chat Noir a try. On Out to Lunch my favourite is Something Sweet Something Tender
I haven’t listened to Brahem’s music, but I have heard Raibh Abou Kahlil’s. Have you heard his stuff? He also plays Oud and often plays with jazz musicians. I liked some of the stuff, but not enough to go out and buy a lot of it. (Really nice covers on his cds, btw.) I’ll try to look for the Brahem album you mentioned.
No, i’ve not heard Raibh Abou Kahlil, i’ll see how he compares to Brahem. I think the oud, accordeon and piano on Le Pas du Chat Noir are a great combination, especially at night. Whether it’ll appeal to real jazz fans i’ve no idea- well one jazz fan i put onto it was delighted so who knows?
Funki Porcini -———- Modern jazz with electronic elements, this guy rocks. Hed Phone Sex is a classic of cinematographic music.
Squarepusher -—IDM with elements of Jazz (specially Music is Rotted one note, that album is heavy extreme jazz)
Skalpel – another modern polish jazz group, very interesting
The Cinematic Orchestra - Wow every single album is amazing, Specially Motion.
Amon Tobin - Very electronic both some tracks are very jazzy, Album Recomendations: Bricolage and Supermodified
They are not pure jazz but they have some elements, they re-invent this classic genre, transforming it to something else.
May I remind everyone this is a FILM site?
“Jazz on a Summer’s Day” is a masterpiece.
I love Rabih Abou-Khalil. His album “Tarab” is awesome.
I love Cinematic Orchestra and Amon Tobin. The Cinematic Orchestra did a score for Man with a Movie Camera which is simply awesome.
But I do love me some jazz jazz. Here are some of my favorite albums off the top of my head.
Birth of the Cool – Miles Davis
Mingus at Carnegie Hall – Charles Mingus (might be my favorite jazz guy of all time)
Anything by Billie Holiday, but especially from the later years when she could barely keep time (def my favorite jazz girl of all time)
All the Jazz at the Philharmonic albums with Charlie Parker
Blue Train – John Coltrane (maybe my second favorite jazz guy?)
Ascension – John Coltrane
Free Jazz – Ornette Coleman
Waltz with Debbie – Bill Evans
Combustication – Medeski, Martin, & Wood
Live Evil – Miles Davis
Pangaea – Miles Davis
Black Saint and the Sinner Lady – Charles Mingus
Thelonious Monk with John Coltrane
Love Supreme – John Coltrane
Headhunters – Herbie Hancock
One can’t go wrong with Charles Mingus. His entire career spanned many different genres but he really excelled as a Third Stream musician on albums like Black Saint and the Sinner Lady and Let My Children Hear Music.
As far as jazz in movies, some of my favorites:
American Splendor does Joe Maneri justice, playing a lot of Panoits Nine selections.
Elevator to the Gallows has great Miles Davis throughout
Anatomy of a Murder is the dame for Duke Ellington
Naked Lunch has an incredible Howard Shore-Ornette Coleman collaboration
John Zorn does many soundtracks, although his stuff with the Masada, Bar Kokhba, and Naked City are the best
The Sting does Scott Joplin and ragtime justice
Kansas City is a good Altman jazz film
jazz is always in there somewhere, even Fishing With John has some Lounge Lizards in it
Blue, any love for Ornette Coleman/Pat Metheny Song X?
These fellers here, from Sweden, are straight up vicious-
Genaro, as a Tobin fan, have you heard?
Not as glitchy as Amon Tobin, but a similar nocturnal vibe. How about Spring Heel Jack?
Khalil has a cd called Odd Times (I think), and the instrumentation is kind of wild: harmonica, tuba and something called the serpent. Blue, have you heard that one? I haven’t listened to Tarab.
I have listened to some of those groups you mentioned (Cinematic Orch, Squarepusher and Amon Tobin—he had one track, “Verbal” that I thought was fun). I was very open to the idea of combining electronic dance music with jazz, but I’ve never heard anything that really got me excited. I guess the music seemed a little too stiff, and not dynamic enough or the compositions weren’t strong enough (i.e. good melody) for my tastes. But I’m still open to checking music in that vein.
I didn’t realize that Cinematic Orch’s Man with a Movie Camera was a score for the movie. Did you ever listened to it while watching the film?
Good list. I really like Blue Train, too. Not only are the solos good, but I like the compositions on that one. I’d say it’s one of my favorite albums by Trane. I actually like his solo stuff prior to the Impulse! recordings (including Love Supreme which is not even my favorite album from that Quartet recordings on Impulse!). Is the Mingus at Carnegie Hall a recent recording? Is Dolphy on that?
talking of films, how about Jammin the Blues?
Jazz music is something that I appreciate more often than enjoy. Live performances can be astonishing, but it’s hard for me to put on any of the 20 or so jazz albums that I own. Having said that, I love Charles Mingus. After searching around through the annals of jazz history, I discovered that he was my favorite because of his unique dedication to compositional jazz. And he plays bass – hell yeah!
Never heard of Jammin the Blues. I’ve seen several documentaries and films related to jazz, but I can’t think of any that I really thought was terrific. Some of the docs on Miles Davis were pretty good. I never really got into Other Side of Midnight (is that the title) starring Dexter Gordon, but I saw it a long time ago, and I might like it more now.
I know that Zorn has a bunch of Filmworks cds, but are those from actual films?
I thought Knife in the Water had a great score. A lot of people here have listed some of my favorite jazz musicians and jazz albums, but I’ll just list a few of my favorites: Miles Davis: Kind of Blue, Nefertiti, Round About Midnight, Live Evil, Bitche’s Brew, Ornette Coleman: The Shape of Jazz To Come, Free Jazz, John Coltrane: A Love Supreme, Ascension, Blue Train, Herbie Hancock: Sextant, The Mahavishnu Orchestra with John McLaughlin:The Inner Mounting Flame. I like Mingus too and Thelonious Monk. Also, as mentioned previously, I thought Miles Davis’s score to Elevator To The Gallows was great. I bought one by a musician named Cecil Taylor called Unit Structures. He’s supposedly been heavily influenced by Stravinsky. I tend to go for jazz from the mid to late fifties to the early mid seventies where jazz was very experimental and avant garde such as fusion jazz and the stuff that came before it. I like some modern jazz too like Branford Marsalis or Wynton Marsalis, but I tend to listen to that period I just mentioned the most. I haven’t been listening to jazz too recently but I play it once in a while.
I’m curious to know which albums you own; and what makes you not enjoy them so much.
When you say you like Mingus because of his “dedication to compositional jazz,” do you mean that he emphasizes strong compositions in an orchestral setting?
Aloha – Yes, that is what I appreciate about him. I know that he’s not the only jazz musician to be concerned with composition, but he seems more focused on it overall than others. The orchestral setting appeals to me as well. I own Ah Um, Mingus Dynasty, and I lost my copy of The Shoes of the Fisherman’s Wife are Some Jive Ass Slippers. I should get some more sometime.
I know what you mean by saying that Mingus seems more concerned with composition than other jazz musicians—although there are a lol of terrific jazz composers out there—especially if you consider the shorter song form compositions. Thelonious Monk would probably be up there. Horace Silver has very tuneful/soulful songs. I love Bobby Watson and Pat Metheny, too.
If you haven’t checked out Black Saint and the Sinner Lady that’s definitely one to add. Have you checked out Tom Harrell’s bigger band stuff or Maria Schneider? I haven’t heard much of her stuff (kind of abstract sounding), so I can’t address her compositions, but she does write for a big band. I like Harrell’s tunes, and he doesn’t have some cds in an orchestral (big band) setting.
What’s the albums that you don’t enjoy much? Do you like Ellington much?
My jazz knowledge is pathetically limited. I basically love these:
Kind of Blue
Sketches of Spain
Black Saint and the Sinner Lady
Mingus Ah Um
I also love Mingus’ novel Beneath the Underdog.
I plan to dive headfirst into all things Charlie Parker very soon including Eastwood’s somewhat acclaimed Bird.
Aloha – I like some of Duke Ellington, and George Gershwin type stuff. I feel like I’m treading a tightrope here. Elsewhere on this site, I’ve mentioned that music is my favorite art form, but I have an extremely difficult time articulating why I do or don’t like something. All that I can say about music – and film – is that I tend to prefer things with definite structure and composition. So, yes I’ve also enjoyed some of Miles Davis and other jazz giants at times. Mingus, however, is the only jazz artist that I really feel compelled to listen to on occasion. In fact, I might dig out my Ah Um album right now! It’s been a while.