Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Teasing the Korean

THE CREATIVE WORLD OF STAN KENTON

111 posts in this topic

Well, I don't have as many CDs as Chuck, but do I win the Kenton 78 count with 18 discs?

You don't. I have 28. :g

And I also own some 45 LPs covering mostly the 1950-1958 period as well a 2-CD set with his 50s Capitol TRANSCRPITIONS. So I guess I qualify as a sort of fan. In fact at a local clearout sale yesterday i bought his "Some Women I've Known" LP from his own Creative World label and found it rather refreshing to listen to (though I am not the biggest fan of female 50s jazz vocalists in the world).

count me in among those who find more in his music from that period tha tother who constantly denigrate him - though, OTOH, after having bought and listened to his somewhat legendary "The Kenton Era" 4-LP set I can understand (to a degree) those who take him to task for his "bombastic excesses" and there are moments when I can understand Shelly Manne who found the job in his band like "chopping wood" too. ;) But there is plenty of Kentonia to discover to offset all that.

And as for what Stereojack said about his "later" stuff (after the 40s and 50s) getting less interesting, one record I found quite fascinating is his "The Uncollected" Hindsight LP featuring transcriptions of his 1962 "Mellophonium" orchestra. Quite interesting, not bombastic at all to my ears, and really ear-catching. I am not familiar with his commercially released output with that band but what I heard there is really an intirguing starting point IMHO.

Edited by Big Beat Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And as for what Stereojack said about his "later" stuff (after the 40s and 50s) getting less interesting, one record I found quite fascinating is his "The Uncollected" Hindsight LP featuring transcriptions of his 1962 "Mellophonium" orchestra. Quite interesting, not bombastic at all to my ears, and really ear-catching. I am not familiar with his commercially released output with that band but what I heard there is really an intirguing starting point IMHO.

I also like "Adventures in Jazz" (1963) a lot. And "Compositions of Dee Barton" (1969) is very good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, I don't have as many CDs as Chuck, but do I win the Kenton 78 count with 18 discs?

You don't. I have 28. :g

Curse you, Big Beat Steve!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Takes a moldy fig to know about "Yard Dog Mazurka" :-)

I would gladly join a Gerald Wilson fan club.

I've made a point of not collecting all of Kenton but on one hard drive I do have:

Stan Kenton - Adventures In Blues 1961

Stan Kenton - Back To Balboa 1958

Stan Kenton - Balboa Bash 1941

Stan Kenton - Complete Capitol Recordings 1943-1947

Stan Kenton - Contemporary Concepts 1955-1956

Stan Kenton - Cuban Fire 1956

Stan Kenton - Eager Beaver Vol.4 1944

Stan Kenton - Etude for Saxophones, Vol.2, 1941-1942

Stan Kenton - Live At the Las Vegas Tropicana 1959

Stan Kenton - Painted Rhythm Vol.5 1944-1945

Stan Kenton - Portraits on Standards 1951 & 1954

Stan Kenton - Reed Rapture Vol.3, 1941-1943

Stan Kenton - Reunion Roast

Stan Kenton - Sophisticated Approach 1961

Stan Kenton - Standards In Silhouette 1959

Stan Kenton - Unissued Capitol Recordings 1946-1965

Stan Kenton Mix

plus, Chronological Classics:

Stan Kenton 1945

Stan Kenton 1946

Stan Kenton 1947

Stan Kenton vol.2 1947

Stan Kenton 1950-1951

Stan Kenton 1951-1952

Stan Kenton 1952-1953

Edited by flat5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Takes a moldy fig to know about "Yard Dog Mazurka" :-)

Oh yeah? Sez who, bub? :w

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have his Russo/Holman Mosaic and a few others, and I like them all. His Christmas album is one of my favorites, such as it is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

let me add to this that Kenton's version of Lonesome Train (by Gene Roland, an extremely talented guy who should be mentioned, by the way) may be the single deepest "country" recording I've ever heard by a post-1940s jazz band. Puts Giuffre to shame, wipes everybody else away jazz-wise in this idiom. I'm continually amazed by it.

Edited by AllenLowe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really? It sounds to me like a pleasant-enough "response" to the first section of "Happy Go Lucky Local", but not too terribly much else.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've got a lot of his work on cd. Sometimes I really like his recordings. Sometimes I feel as if I'd not miss them if they all went away. It's a weird situation that may or may not resolve itself one of these days.

Some of the fifties and sixties recordings are really beautiful and fascinating, as "recordings," that Capitol sound was something else.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lonesome Train is much deeper, country wise, than even anything I've heard Ellington do - Duke to me had much different ideas about the blues. Lonesome Train leans over like a blues tone poem.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You must be hearing a differently defined "country" than any that I've ever been around, even loosely.

But if you hear it, good for you! It's a nice enough piece, wouldn't want to take that away from it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mr. Free - as a trombonist, do you feel that the "Kenton Trombone Style" (a very real thing, individually & sectionally, and imo the most ongoingly musically valid about the organization) influenced the sound of "salsa" trombonists?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mr. Free - as a trombonist, do you feel that the "Kenton Trombone Style" (a very real thing, individually & sectionally, and imo the most ongoingly musically valid about the organization) influenced the sound of "salsa" trombonists?

Mr. Kart, as a listener, says that almost certainly there was that influence on Salsa trombonists, but for Mr. Kart's taste the "Kenton Trombone Style" is typically so pernicious that it could be used by the CIA to make him reveal every secret he knows.

BTW, I believe that the godfather of the KTS was Kai Winding; its most insidious practitioners probably were Milt Bernhart and (perhaps) Bob Fitzpatrick. Not that these and many more KTS players weren't highly skilled, but so was that Nazi sadist with the dental drills.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

awwww, Larry, don't start up with the Nazi jokes again (especially since I'm afraid to join in) -

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mr. Free - as a trombonist, do you feel that the "Kenton Trombone Style" (a very real thing, individually & sectionally, and imo the most ongoingly musically valid about the organization) influenced the sound of "salsa" trombonists?

Mr. Kart, as a listener, says that almost certainly there was that influence on Salsa trombonists, but for Mr. Kart's taste the "Kenton Trombone Style" is typically so pernicious that it could be used by the CIA to make him reveal every secret he knows.

BTW, I believe that the godfather of the KTS was Kai Winding; its most insidious practitioners probably were Milt Bernhart and (perhaps) Bob Fitzpatrick. Not that these and many more KTS players weren't highly skilled, but so was that Nazi sadist with the dental drills.

Ouch! Methinks I detect a trombone-o-phobe here! Whatever else one can say about Kenton's occasionally bombastic brass, I always thought he did a good job with trombones, and Milt Bernhart was great!

gregmo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For some unknown reason I've shied from Kenton's music till now with the recent purchase of Kenton In Hi-Fi. Love it! I'm looking forward into making further purchases of Kenton's catalogue such as Contemporary Concepts, Live At The Las Vegas Tropicana and Kenton Showcase to name just a few. I somehow got the impression that Kenton's music was pretty dull stuff. Boy, was I wrong! At least not his 50's recordings.

Edited by Tom 1960

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There's a lot live Kenton available from '52-3 featuring Lee Konitz at his early peak. Now there are times when he seems to be struggling to be heard against the brass, but there are other times where he blows within frameworks of great beauty. Overall Lee seemed to enjoy the experience, and he was appreciative of Kenton. As he says in Andy Hamilton's book, "Stan was quite a gentleman, and I always appreciated the way he treated all the guys. I wasn't one of the drinking group at the back of the bus. But he was very respectful - just play good and cool it with the drugs, and show up!"

Q

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

not that it's completely relevant here, but Bill Triglia told me Stan Kenton didn't like Dave Schildkraut as a soloist; he preferred guys like Mariano and Konitz. Also there's a story about circa 1950, when both Dave and Bird were on tour with Kenton, and people thought Dave, practicing in his room, was Bird (somewhat like the old Mingus blindfold test). The last time Kenton called Schildkraut, who was broke at the time, to join his band, Dave hemmed and hawed until his wife picked up the extension phone and said "Mr. Kenton, he'll be there." Dave takes nice solos on Edgon Heath (a Bill Russo piece) and on some of the Bill Holman stuff (Fearless Finlay, etc). Also, here and there.

Edited by AllenLowe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

not that it's completely relevant here, but Bill Triglia told me Stan Kenton didn't like Dave Schildkraut as a soloist; he preferred guys like Mariano and Konitz.

No doubt Kenton preferred them to Schildkraut, but what could "guys like Mariano and Konitz" mean? IMO, it would be hard to imagine two more different players of the same instrument from that era -- Mariano with his somewhat acrid, expressively awkward at times take on Bird (almost a white Ernie Henry, again at times), while Konitz was utterly, fluidly, sometimes ecstatically himself, albeit with roots in Lester Young.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

well, it just meant that Dave was too idiosyncratic for Kenton - whereas even Konitz was a stylist he could get his mind around. Same for Mariano I would assume.

and it's born out by how little solo time Dave gets in that band.

I can also tell you from experience that Dave drove rhythm sections a little bit crazy, especially if they weren't attuned to what he liked to do - like play two measures ahead, chord wise, or lag so far behind the beat as to seem in a different place. I can imagine this might cause trouble with a big band.

Edited by AllenLowe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

well, it just meant that Dave was too idiosyncratic for Kenton - whereas even Konitz was a stylist he could get his mind around. Same for Mariano I would assume.

and it's born out by how little solo time Dave gets in that band.

I can also tell you from experience that Dave drove rhythm sections a little bit crazy, especially if they weren't attuned to what he liked to do - like play two measures ahead, chord wise, or lag so far behind the beat as to seem in a different place. I can imagine this might cause trouble with a big band.

Well, Schildkraut was mostly in the band when Konitz was there. Not to put Dave down, but golly, in that case I'd tend to give most of the alto solos to Konitz, too. PLUS, Schildkraut always took the fairly lengthy alto solo on Kenton's "Concerto to End All Concertos," which was played at every concert. So Kenton must have thought he was OK.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

well, if I had Schildkraut and Konitz in my band...well, I'd go with the preferences of Stan Getz, Dizzy Gillespie, Bill Evans, Jackie McLean, and Mel Lewis, who each told me in one way or another that Dave was probably the best saxophonist they'd heard after Bird (though Evans hedged his bets a bit, and probably thought Dave and Konitz were equally creative) -

I love Konitz, but to me Dave had (in Art Pepper's word) "so much soul" (sorry to drop so many names, but I spent years tracking these people down when I was trying to write an article on Dave) -

Triglia indicated (and Bill was always a reliable source) that Kenton was happy to use the musicians his arrangers liked, but that Kenton personally wasn't crazy about Dave's playing.

and I know I'm not in the majority here, but though I regard Konitz as brilliant, Dave was just on another level.

Edited by AllenLowe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, Allen, I've been impressed by what Schildkraut I've heard, but isn't the man himself, and I mean as an artist now, somewhat responsible for the fact there's so little of it (if indeed I'm right in thinking that he himself had hangups about getting it/letting it out there, rather than being a mere victim of the world's indifference)? And doesn't Lee deserves credit for giving us as large a body of work as he has, and without doing much if any compromising along the way? What I'm saying is that artists are responsible for their temperaments. The ability to create more or less calls upon one to possess the drive to create within the circumstances that life affords one. If you hide your gifts, you did it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.