CJ Shearn

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  1. I was thinking about this the other day that some musicians put out albums that are overly self indulgent or are for the benefit for certain audiences, or sometimes reach for concepts that don't quite get there. Here are a few albums I've thought of that may fit that category: Keith Jarrett: Spirits what is going on with this record? I watched via a webcast receive a prestigious musical award in I think Denmark, where there was a modern dance piece set to "Spirits 17", which was Keith "moaning" all these chants and playing soprano sax, and it really did not make much sense. I only have heard that one piece from that record, and it seemed overly self indulgent. Apparently he lived on Native American land and wanted to make some music that would reflect the heritage. That one piece however included more than a gratuitous amount of what we already hear on his albums. Why not choose to play a tape of a real chant instead of that horrible stuff Keith was doing? Pat Metheny: Zero Tolerance for Silence I love Pat, and actually I find this album quite interesting, even though I don't own it (heard it) but I think the whole mono chromatic density thing didn't come off that well with some people who heard it, or were maybe used to the melodic PMG, and I actually wonder if it was something he maybe released for himself and other guitarists as a sort of research into that sort of playing. Hasn't Buckethead done playing like that as well? But it's not something I completely dislike either although it's not something I'd play all the time. Jsngry, would you mind reposting your hilarious rant on the over indulgence of Ron Carter's album where he plays Bach, from the BNBB if you archived it? or if not could you paraphase what you said about it?
  2. overly self indulgent albums by an artist

    I dunno what's up with some of that GD either stuff Jim. One of my ex suitemate from the fall before last thought that some of that GD jam stuff was some of the greatest stuff on earth. Actually the kid was born in the wrong era, he was a complete stoner, literally, wore tie dye t-shirts, was into the GD, Hendrix, Phish... all that.... tried getting him into some of my stuff, Metheny, Davis, Jimmy Smith, etc..... didn't really work. But he was raving about the GD's long jams called "Space", I heard one of those, it was so freakin boring. And Phish too, I heard a version of "Back at the Chicken Shack" on my suitemates comp, god is was bad.. they turned a simple funky tune to utter garbage.
  3. overly self indulgent albums by an artist

    true Joe, self indulgent can be used negatively as we've all said in this post, and Jim raises another interesting point too: if the artist is doing it because they want or have to... Jarrett's "Spirits" and "The Melody At Night With You" (which I have not heard at all but realize Keith made it is a present for his wife while he was suffering with CFS) I would think are both the results of an artist wanting to release more personal, private, or experimental works to the larger public, since they already have created a strong base. Joe G, since we're the resident Metheny buffs over here, what is your interpretation of "One Quiet Night"? I see it as an album representing a "research project" that Pat never intended to officially release, something that more or less is finding a way around a fairly new instrument not being fully explored at length in another context, and as a result of listening to it and getting others feedback (as stated in Downbeat) he decided to release it. Now is this something Pat had to release? no, is it something he wanted, yeah... b/c he thought that what he recorded (which were 3 CDR's worth of material) would be worth hearing for a particular audience. I think it's a fascinating window into real time composition and different (for Pat) harmonic choices, but I will say it's a record I like but don't love like some of his others, but like a lot of stuff of his for me, it will probably reveal more in a few years from now. Jsngry, what projects would you consider "recreational jerking off"? that's an interesting way of putting it. Would that Carter album be classified as such for you?
  4. overly self indulgent albums by an artist

    thanks Chris.
  5. overly self indulgent albums by an artist

    Chris, I guess in that case that album could be self-indulgent if the whole thing is based on trashing someone who dumped you. This whole conversation has been interesting though, instead of using the term self-indulgence if an artist decides to take their music in another area that some do not get, would it be then better to say that the artist is expanding their pallette? For example, going back to Metheny, when he recorded "Secret Story", it was a deeply personal work which investigated areas fueled by personal emotion in addition to musical ideas (which drive most of his music, rather than something borne out of a statement of a personal feeling about something, e.g. A Love Supreme) and there are some who felt that the album was really too heavy, though IMO it is one of his best. I can see with something like that, b/c there was something other than the language of music itself motivating him at that time, that the intent of that work could get interpreted in ways that may not necessarily have been intended. Don't know if that made much sense, but that's my thought on it.
  6. overly self indulgent albums by an artist

    Overly self indulgent, when I typed that, I was thinking of something that was so far off in another place that it doesn't communicate to anyone else but the person who made it, or groups of people. I wasn't thinking about redundancy there, sorry guys . Anyway, interesting view, Jim, as always, and I'm also rethinking about what "self-indulgent" is. I certainly agree that self indulgence probably shouldn't be the first thing that comes to mind when a particular artist, say Metheny or Jarrett releases something that isn't immediately accessible the first time around, it just shows depth on their part and also that they have garnered enough of a reputation be it positive or negative, to freely pursue creatively what they want.
  7. overly self indulgent albums by an artist

    hmm, never heard that MFT Sundog, but is it possible it felt so good Trane kept it going? I wonder what those 3 hour solos were like, a man trying to get all of the ideas he could possibly think of, out.
  8. overly self indulgent albums by an artist

    Pat had said something also about ZTFS that it was closer to the way he heard music in his head. I can see his point about to him maybe the music not being that different to him from the PMG stuff in terms of melodic and some harmonic elements used but I think for people casually into his music it's probably quite jarring to hear how that came out at first. What about that album "Adult Themes for Voice" by Mike Patton? I don't believe I've ever heard Mr Bungle, probably Faith No More somewhere on the radio, but his album with random noises in hotel rooms (I had d/l several tracks from this) seemed to me to be an act of extreme silliness. Are strange noises a common thread in Mr Bungle and some other stuff Mike Patton participated in?
  9. Blue Note Conns from 1998..

    I think the RVG series is great b/c many of the records reissued are titles I missed/didn't get the first time. I only have a couple duplications with RVG's, "Somethin Else", "Maiden Voyage", "The Sermon", "Cool Blues", and "Houseparty". And I agree with Chuck that it's a good way to update masterings of classic recordings, especially for those of us like myself who can not afford to go the Japanese import route too often, and where I shop o/l like CDUniverse, it's difficult to locate titles actually in stock, import wise.
  10. overly self indulgent albums by an artist

    7/4, I wouldn't agree that the PMG material is safe (except mebbe Letter From Home) so much as melodic, and the goals of each album done with the Group in my mind, serve to expand and investigate ideas that have been created in their own universe. Albums such as "Quartet" and "Imaginary Day" are anything but safe. "Speaking of Now" returned Pat to the melodic base of his earlier work but there are specific things with form (Proof) and rhythm (The Gathering Sky) on that record (and especially evident live with these pieces) that were never addressed before to the extent that they were on this album, and from what I've heard about the new PMG album forth coming, it's really going to take advantage of the new group in a way SoN really only hinted at. But yes, I'm also glad Pat puts out some of these more experimental projects as well. BTW, I think a more fully realized version of the concepts found on ZTFS were more fully realized and refined upon on the free tune "Faith Healer" from "Trio Live".
  11. overly self indulgent albums by an artist

    yeah, "Spirits 17" wasn't all that interesting.... "Spirits" does seem like a very personal project. Part 1 of ZTFS after that heavy strumming it starts with does move into a melodic territory after a while, you just gotta find it. I think it was either Part 2, or 4 that very nearly came close to sounding like a complete tune. Thanks for the info on KJ's album, I wasn't aware of that.
  12. Defunct labels, what happened to their Catalogs?

    JG, are you referring to CTI's first releases which included Jobim, Montgomery and Benson under A&M's banner which spanned from 1967-70? I believe in the early days of CD according to Doug Payne's excellent and very thorough CTI discography which can be found at www.dougpayne.com , some of those albums were remastered by RVG, and housed in digipacks as early as 1984. I know some of the releases such as the Benson's were reissued on CD again in 2000 I believe, and other A&M/CTI titles such as one of the Jobim's and I think a Milton Nascimiento album were released in the Verve By Request series a few years ago. I believe that King is distributing the CTI catalog in Japan as of now and have recently reissued some of those A&M/CTI's before it became an independent in 1970.

    is Thom Jurek paid to gush in every review? He seems to marvel at anything he hears and even for the simplest groovin' stuff like Patton's "Let Em Roll" he analyzes some things like their huge, where in the case of that album everything is for the benefit of the groove, not a necessarily earth shattering technical achievement
  14. Jimmy Smith The Sermon/House Party

    any info as to whether or not the rejected titles from 2/25/58 were with Smith's trios, special trios or quartets with guest artists? I would be interested to hear rejected takes from that session if they exist.
  15. Tony Williams - Unmasked

    Mike, I could not find much on it either, nothing at all. I wonder exactly what it was. I believe Tony participated in a fusion/rock project called Arcana, but I don't believe that's what "Unmasked" is.
  16. Charlie Haden

    Charlie is a great player. I don't have much with him, but his contributions on the duet record with Metheny are very nice...... both those guys are such a compatible pair, love the way Haden's bassline provides tension behind Pat's acoustic sitar solo on "Tears of Rain." Charlie's contribution to Pat's "Secret Story" album and the tune "Above the Treetops", is solid as well. He's just playing the changes really but it works very well with Pat's solo. Charlie is also good on Josh Redman's "Wish". Dig the "Blues in the Closet" quote on "Blues For Pat".
  17. Info regarding "One Night With Blue Note"

    thanks Bertrand. Ten of the same tracks? that is just incredibly stupid. Why not include the rest of the performance? what's in place of the Taylor track.... another dumb move on BN's part. It seems to me the DVD would pretty much appeal to hardcore BN and hard bop fans, I don't know how many casual jazz fans would know about the concert.. and also out of jazz fans I know (many of whom are musicians) weren't aware the concert took place. Maybe they released highlights on the DVD because: a) maybe if the purchase was someone's introduction to the artists and by including mostly representative tunes, they would hope the casual fan would seek the original recordings out. b ) perhaps the additional material when Tom originally went over the footage was of unreleasable quality (maybe the digital film degraded too much, or just bad shots? I remember he said the whole evening was captured by early digital cameras) It's just great to have this music available again on DVD but they could have released the thing on one 2 DVD set. Oh yes, anyone notice on "Summertime" in the first wide stage shot you see some damage in the film? a grey line appears like the type when a video tape is watched too much or theres a wrinkle in the film. Just something I noticed the other day.
  18. VSOP: A Tribute to Miles(Qwest)

    speaking of Herbie in a trio: there are two DVD's that I presume are the same performance with Ron Carter and Billy Cobham: Hurricane! and World of Rhythm Live. Are these both the same or does one have more performances than the other? And is one better quality
  19. This just shipped out to me today from CDuniverse. Been one that was on my list for a while, and technically although it doesn't use the name it is a VSOP Quintet (with Wallace in place of Freddie) disc. Also have been trying to complete my collection of VSOP related discs (tho the very first still eludes me), not to mention load up on more Hancock/Carter/Williams what are some opinions of the "Tribute to Miles" disc vs. the other VSOP Quintet records?
  20. VSOP: A Tribute to Miles(Qwest)

    thanks Jim. I know that by then when those guys were playing in the inside-outside style by 1977 it wasn't anything revolutionary but within a tradition so I think for the VSOP records that where the enjoyment of them lie in that they play within a tradition maybe not as heavy on the consistent elasticity as 10 years before but with enough oomph that it was still fairly fresh. Another album I enjoy is Herbie Hancock Trio '81. Again,nothing revolutionary but things swing very hard, and hey it's Herbie in a trio something he's not featured enough with on record.
  21. Vierd Blues/Trane's Blues/John Paul Jones

    ahh... found some info attributing "Solar" to Wayne: from an AAJ article reviewing a Wayne album. This is mid sentence but it contains the info claiming Wayne wrote the tune. "Since the classic “Solar” is now recognized as a Chuck Wayne composition (see the Feather & Gitler: The Biographical Encyclopedia of Jazz)" it then goes onto say how Wayne should be looked at as a serious contributor, frankly I was not aware of his name until I heard such info a while back.
  22. Vierd Blues/Trane's Blues/John Paul Jones

    Mike, I had read/heard (forget where now) somewhere recently that there was information that Wayne had written "Solar" as opposed to Davis. Could it have been in the bio of Wayne's recently reissued Prestige session on OJC maybe? not sure. Anyway, in a recent live show I have of the Pat Metheny Trio from 11/1/03 on my computer at my dorm, Pat even says the tune may have been written by Chuck Wayne, not Miles, but he was not totally sure either. FWIW on Pat's "Question and Answer" album from '89 with Holland and Haynes, the back cover credits the tune to Davis as ©1955 Prestige Music
  23. VSOP: A Tribute to Miles(Qwest)

    Mike, yes, I was referring to Tony's '93 Atlantic album, unfortunately I haven't heard it. On a second spin of "Tribute to Miles", the pedestrian nature of the music is setting in a little bit, which maybe I was sort of expecting because of the opinions expressed here, and it also got me thinking about the nature of acoustic jazz albums in the 90's being a little on the bland side. I used to listen to WSQX 91.5 the local jazz station here in Binghamton back in the mid 90's when it started and a lot of the recordings they played were pretty conservativve-- though there were some curves like Metheny's "Stranger in Town", and with men the caliber of Shorter, Hancock, Carter and Williams, men who more often than not were capable of stretching the boundaries, even compared to the early VSOP forays, it's a shame that they stayed a bit in the box for the "Tribute" disc, but still something nice to have in the collection. I've traded discs in before and wound up missing shit even though I'd never buy something again. As for that rhythm section, next step is the Plugged Nickel box when I have more $$ to burn, and how is Ron Carter's "Third Plane"?
  24. Info regarding "One Night With Blue Note"

    Tjazz, yep, seems so, if that bonus CD includes most/all of those performances left off the DVD. I hope when it's re released some of the sites put up a track listing so it'd be easier to make a decision. If it includes most of the same tracks plus two or three of the remaining tracks, it wouldn't be worth it at all, but man they should have done this the first time, packaging it all together :-p
  25. VSOP: A Tribute to Miles(Qwest)

    alright, I got the album and listened to it. It's not that bad; something that would make a nice occasional listen (as I like to listen to different versions of tunres and compare/contrast) and also something to throw on unsuspecting listeners (such as my suitemate at school who isn't a jazz fan per se but tolerate) to see if they recognize the difference betweren these renditions and the originals. I'm glad to have the original recordings because had I grabbed it when it came out (I wasn't as critical them as now) I woulda thought it was excellent and not take into account these guys were kind of in a safety zone with the material here. That said, I do enjoy that tune "Elegy", quite a bit of Shorter's playing, and Herbie's "All Blues" solo cracks me up cuz you always when that trill is coming in a climax of a solo But, I pretty much agree now with everything said here.