Tom Storer

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Everything posted by Tom Storer

  1. Pat Martino

    After my post wondering about Michael Pedicin, the excellent and previously unknown to me tenor player I saw Monday night with Pat Martino, I looked for a Pat Martino thread and find that he's hardly been talked about at all here. I'm not a guitaroholic by any means, but Martino is one of my guitar heroes. His mid-70's albums "Consciousness" and "Impressions" blew me away, and I liked his collaboration with Gil Goldstein later in the decade; but then he had his stroke, lost his memory, and spent a decade or so learning to play the guitar all over again. I hadn't listened to much of the "new" Pat Martino but jumped at the chance to see him live, as I had never seen him play before. Lo and behold, the "new" Pat Martino is the old Pat Martino - in other words, simply amazing. With his current band he's playing in much the same style as he did 25 years ago - fiercely swinging soloing in a modern bop or modal context, very lyrical even with his staccato delivery and a sound that is dark in tone but bright in the clarity of his phrasing. His drive and his rigorous concentration give the music a powerful momentum, and his improvisations, which spin out cells of inventive variation seemingly effortlessly, are mesmerizing. OK, what the hell, I'll come right out and say it: I like him. Any other Martino fans in the house? Or, heaven forfend, detractors?
  2. Marvin Gaye vs. Robin Thicke

    I'm willing to side with the "Thicke is odious" camp here. And now I'll forget him as quickly as I learned about him!
  3. AAJ forums

    What's this? New blood in a jazz message board? <faints dead away>
  4. Marvin Gaye vs. Robin Thicke

    I agree with ejp626. I had not heard "Blurred Lines" before clicking on the links, but having listened to the three songs in question, I don't hear direct, note-for-note copies from either song, although the stylistic borrowing is obvious. But what's wrong with that? If Michael Jackson or Stevie Wonder had started suing everyone who imitated their signature vocalisms, that would have shut down a huge amount of pop since the 80's. And Christ, think of jazz. "Charlie Parker Estate Sues Sonny Stitt"... "Stan Getz Estate Sues Harry Allen"... "Dizzy Gillespie Estate sues Jon Fadden"... "John Coltrane Estate Sues Five Dozen Tenor Saxophonists"... "Herbie Hancock Sues Five Dozen Pianists"... "Jaco Pastorius Estate Sues Five Dozen Electric Bassists"... "Estates of Ten Blues Guitarists Sue Eric Clapton"...
  5. Billy Hart, All Our Reasons (ECM)

    I don't know, I like both the BHQ albums quite a lot. "Grit" is not something I'd particularly associate with Mark Turner, and certainly not with Iverson. It took me a while to warm up to Mark Turner in general, but over the past couple of years I've become convinced. I think he's wonderful. But yes, in a very cerebral vein. Iverson, who is perhaps my favorite jazz blogger, is sadly not my favorite jazz pianist. To me he lacks vibrancy. That kind of pulls the music down below an optimum level.
  6. Dogs or Cats?

    Cats. I grew up with cats and I'm sure that somehow shaped my personality (for the better, I like to think). After our last cat expired, however, my wife said no more. She was sick of getting fur on her clothes and having the furniture clawed. I've never had a dog, but I have nothing against them. One good thing about cats is that you don't have to pay a lot of attention to them; dogs need walking and are more in-your-face, it seems. If I ever retire to the countryside, I might get a dog. It seems like that would make more sense. But I have no plans to retire to the countryside.
  7. I get my hair cut at local salon de coiffure, but I have never had a barbershop shave.
  8. Wayne Shorter's Without A Net on the Blue Note label

    I listened to some of the album on NPR and thought it sounded great. Emperor has no clothes, fuck no. Obviously it's not everybody's cup of tea. No one is obliged to like it, and of course some might only pretend to like it because the New York Times told them to (not much chance of that in this room, I'd say). But if it were just fashionable and empty, it wouldn't rub some people the wrong way as much as it seems to. If it annoys you that much, it's that there is something there to annoy you.
  9. Drummers who sound like they never even heard of swing, let alone want to do it themselves.
  10. Wayne Shorter's Without A Net on the Blue Note label

    Tom M, I sense from your alternate personnel suggestions that you're itching for some swing. I don't think Shorter is much interested in swinging with this group, though. If any one member (besides Shorter) is indispensable, IMHO, it's Blade. With all respect for Blake, Penn and Gulleon, masters all, I just don't know if they are interested in the kind of free abstraction that defines this group. What makes this group special for me is the way it combines an extremely abstract viewpoint with a kind of gleeful physicality. It's sui generis. Because it's essentially stream-of-consciousness music, there are moments when inspiration lags. But that happens with almost any group. I have to be in the mood for this group, but when I am I find it a particularly bracing experience.
  11. Inez Andrews - RIP

    Sad news. I have you to thank, John, for clueing me into Inez Andrews and a lot of her superlative singing from the "golden age." RIP.
  12. Having trouble getting into the forums

    I find that recently, when I go to the forums in Chrome, the display is all wrong: the text shows up as text on a white background, large font, scrolling far down, no images or frames and stuff. In Internet Explorer it shows up fine.
  13. Among the pop/rock of the era, Steely Dan was probably among the more palatable to many jazz musicians. From there to saying jazz of the time was "informed" by Steely Dan is a bit of a stretch. I don't think they were a big influence on jazz, although some aspects of jazz were a big influence on them.
  14. On being a fan

    When I was a senior in high school in 1976, a friend and I went to see an amazing show at Carnegie Hall--Anthony Braxton in a group with George Lewis, Dave Holland, Barry Altschul, Muhal Richard Abrams, and a couple of others whom I don't recall; the Ted Curson Octet with Nick Brignola and Chris Woods; and the George Coleman Octet with Mario Rivera and I don't know who all else. Anyway, my friend was and still is a hot-shot photographer, and after the concert he talked us backstage with his camera as "journalists." There's Dave Holland standing there talking to someone. We hesitantly approach and tell him how much we liked the music. He chats with us in a simple, relaxed way for several minutes. I remember mentioning how much I liked the Circle records, from five or six years earlier, and he firmly told me that that stuff was old and I should be listening to what was happening NOW. Then someone calls him away. "Would you guys mind watching my bass?" he asks, and disappears. So we stood there proudly guarding Dave Holland's bass for five minutes backstage at Carnegie Hall. Gosh!! When leaving we ran into Nick Brignola leaving. It was the first time I'd heard him or heard of him so I told him I thought he was great and how did he spell his name. "Thanks," he says, "B-R-I-G-N-O-L-A." And then he hurried off.
  15. Back in business

    That will be Larry's dictatorial moderation practices.
  16. Ted Curson RIP

    A coincidence, the last time I saw Curson was with the Arvanitas trio. I got the chance to see him several times, including once with his burning 70's octet and once in a quintet with Nick Brignola. Curson will be missed. RIP.
  17. Some Love For Jimmy Garrison

    Never left! Things are great in Paris, we weathered that hurricane just fine. Oh, wait, that was the East Coast of the United States.
  18. Some Love For Jimmy Garrison

    I'm another big fan of Garrison. Interestingly, Larry Grenadier cites him as a major model. I could see that when I had a chance to see the Mehldau trio up close in a small club. Grenadier was strong as a bull, totally leading the rhythmic drive of those arrangements. It was very Garrison-like. Not something I'd picked up on listening to the CDs. For a chance to hear Garrison quite clearly, in all his swinging authority, check out Benny Carter's "Further Definitions."
  19. Wynton is live right now...

    Again, Wynton as dictator of jazz is something I can't see. He wields power in the jazz subcategory of Manhattan cultural institutions, and he gets disproportionate visibility as the media's stereotypical jazz musician. He has a following among musicians and among fans, but so does Steve Coleman, so does Pat Metheny, so does William Parker, so does Dave Holland, etc. I think it's distorting a more complex and chaotic reality to say that Wynton is the boss so it's his fault if the jazz audience is decreasing. He's not the boss. I doubt the situation of jazz in the music market would have changed much if he had turned down Art Blakey and stayed in New Orleans as a local star. It might have declined more swiftly. There's no real way to tell. As for marketing, jazz musicians need marketing, individually and collectively. But who does the marketing for Jazz as a concept? There's no CEO of jazz to appoint a Marketing Director. There's just an aggregate of musicians trying to gain notoriety, critics doing their thing, record labels and festival organizers and so on, all making their uncoordinated efforts. And bickering fans, of course. Marketing jazz, to quote a phrase, is like herding cats.
  20. Bill Brimfield RIP

    Try this: Someone should dub "All the Single Ladies" to that...
  21. Wynton is live right now...

    But jazz was never under Wynton's leadership. You might say "jazz" was/is under Wynton's leadership, if "jazz" = the marketing narrative for jazz that major labels presented in the 80's and 90's to push product. That narrative failed resoundingly and now seems relevant only to a small cĂ´terie of Friends of Wynton. But I guess that's what you meant, actually. The fact that jazz doesn't sell much isn't the fault of the marketing narrative of which Wynton was the spearhead. To say otherwise would be to imply that all jazz needs to thrive is a good overall marketing narrative. You can either accept the wide variety and stubborn quirkiness of the bunch of stuff that is jazz, with all its glories and its oddities, or else pine for marketing, regimentation and shibboleths.
  22. *** John Scofield ***

    I'll be seeing them in November. I love groups that stay strong for decades.
  23. Jacky Samson 1940-2012

    RIP. I used to see him with Arvanitas all the time back in the 80's, backing lone-gun soloists. Arvanitas, Samson, Charles Saudrais. They probably played with more touring American soloists than any other rhythm section in France, as well as their own concerts and recordings. I remember that Samson, who was black, raised a ruckus once about racism in the French jazz scene. His remarks were controversial!
  24. no one is even close to ella

    Hey, man. Scooby doo wah!