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JSngry

Some Love For Jimmy Garrison

92 posts in this topic

We worship Trane, love Elvin, and venerate McCoy, but next time you go there, let the bass direct everything else and see where you end up.

It's a veritably...regal place. A palatial expanse of freeness (let's not call it "freedom", because that word is just too damn cheap these days) built from the bottom up.

Sometimes I take it for granted, but these days, taking anything for granted is an invitation to extermination.

Let's not do that.

p54421idleo.jpg

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Takes muscle to play bass. To play a long fast tune with tone and good intonation takes lots of muscle.

and that's not all

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It takes knowing, that's what it takes. If the bass player knows, everybody goes.

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Takes muscle to play bass. To play a long fast tune with tone and good intonation takes lots of muscle.

and that's not all

What else?

A self effacing disposition?

An ability to placate people on public transport who might otherwise be irritated by the size and positioning of your instrument in a full car?

An ability to count to four?

A thick skin?

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An ability to shut out irrelevant bullshit.

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Do you have to be able to strum your instrument to make it sound vaguely like Spanish guitar?

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Do you have to be able to strum your instrument to make it sound vaguely like Spanish guitar?

Oh. "Spanish". Now I get it.

If that's all you hear, then hey...I'm glad I don't have you ears.

Or whatever it is.

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In fairness, listening to Jimmy Garrison ought to be done. I've thought so many times, but I've never actually done it. There always seem to be other uh more interesting things going on...

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Oddly enough, a guy on America's Test Kitchen was just now cutting up a turkey with a chain saw.

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He seemed to be enjoying it.

Can't see any reason not to.

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I often can't hear Garrison - it's almost like he's way down in the mix, although it might be the way he plays. Gary Peacock's another one I have trouble hearing.

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I have no trouble feeling Garrison, even if I can't always hear him.

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Are we talking about hearing him or hearing him?

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I have no trouble feeling Garrison, even if I can't always hear him.

Totally agree. Listening to the Coltrane Quartet Implulse box end-to-end recently I was left marvelling at just how much his playing permeated everything. His bass solos (which always seem to have quite a ruminative quality) are always a standout for me too.

Edited by sidewinder

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I admit that the one time I saw the quartet live I could not hear him at all. But I was sitting on the Elvin side of the stage.

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I admit that the one time I saw the quartet live I could not hear him at all. But I was sitting on the Elvin side of the stage.

"Where's the bass?"

To paraphrase Jimmy Giuffre: "It is understood." ^_^

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An amazing player. Owning a contrabass violin I have an idea of what mastery and vision he had to own and maintain to anchor that quartet. His playing has long impressed me, and I'm a huge fan of his musical "attitude."

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I have heard three bass players in person whose sound has stayed in my ears: Garrison (at Slugs, years ago), Wilbur Ware (one night, with Monk) and Ronnie Boykin (the old Tin Palace).

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his son, btw, runs a performance space in Brooklyn; nice guy, also an excellent bassist.

Edited by AllenLowe

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tumblr_maedejMQ5M1r3sdivo1_500.jpg

Jimmy Garrison and son Matthew circa 1971

As Serious As Your Life

Edited by .:.impossible

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Love that photo, and the book is fantastic even with its occasional errors.

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