Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
bresna

Gary Burton Retiring

56 posts in this topic

I've got to confess, I'm not certain I've ever heard ANY(?!) Gary Burton on record before (though I've certainly been aware of who he was for 20-25 years).

Neither any of his leader-dates, and nothing from his list of sideman appearances either, far as I can see.  (Or if I have, certainly nothing I've ever owned -- maybe a date I borrowed once, a gazillion years ago.)

Basing my statement on the discography here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gary_Burton

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, he has his reasons - wanting to enjoy himself without having
the pressure of needing to actually be somewhere on time.
He's the last of my teachers alive - percussion and otherwise.
I'd like for him to continue living his life to the fullest - and if that
means being on a permanent vacation, then I'm all for it!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
58 minutes ago, Rooster_Ties said:

I've got to confess, I'm not certain I've ever heard ANY(?!) Gary Burton on record before (though I've certainly been aware of who he was for 20-25 years).

Neither any of his leader-dates, and nothing from his list of sideman appearances either, far as I can see.  (Or if I have, certainly nothing I've ever owned -- maybe a date I borrowed once, a gazillion years ago.)

Basing my statement on the discography here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gary_Burton

I guess - in my case, then - this one below (where he is given co-credit and which I do find quite an ear-opener) doesn't count either? ;)

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, rostasi said:

Well, he has his reasons - wanting to enjoy himself without having the pressure of needing to actually be somewhere on time. He's the last of my teachers alive - percussion and otherwise. I'd like for him to continue living his life to the fullest - and if that means being on a permanent vacation, then I'm all for it!

The article says that he has had 6 (!) heart surgeries, 2 of them "major" and he is 74, so I would guess that his health is probably the most important factor in his decision to take it easy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

His latest group and albums, and participation in the Mack Avenue Superband has been quite vital.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, quite a few heart surgeries! I don't know when the last one happened
and how he's doing physically these days, but I would imagine that could
be one of the reasons he's deciding on this. I'm just going by what he's
saying in the article: lack of focus with ageing, and so on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First of all, a big hand to his mother, the 101 year-old Mrs. Burton!!:tup:D

Good for him for making the difficult choice to bow out while he is still in command of all his musical skills.  That let's people remember him at his best.

I regret that I never got to see him perform.  I do have a lot of his recordings, but nowhere near the majority of them if he cites 66 albums he made as leader/co-leader.  He was a phenomenal musician in a variety of settings.  His autobiography was a great reading experience.

Good luck and happy travels in retirement, Mr. Burton.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

He was a youngster when I was just getting into jazz so have always and still think of him as a youngster !

Never seen him play either but wishing him an enjoyable retirement.

Edited by sidewinder

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, sidewinder said:

He was a youngster when I was just getting into jazz so have always and still think of him as a youngster !

I suffer from this phenomenon in a big way.   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did see him one time--at the Blue Note in New York in 2010--a quartet including Julian Lage and Antonio Sanchez--it was quite good.

Edited by kh1958

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have at least 7 records by him (in digital format), and certainly would like to add more.  I had more of his duos with Corea in older formats; I'd like to update these into digital format.  I can't say I'm familiar with his work with Ozone, although I have gone in to Spotify to hear some stuff.

Anyone with an interest in vibes must hear Burton, and his overall contribution to jazz is considerable.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Every GB performance I've seen (two with Pat Metheny in clubs) has been wonderful. We spent a small fortune on our remodeling project so concerts are off the table now but seeing him again at Blues Alley would be a fitting goodbye. He's doing the right thing going out with all faculties intact.  Seeing a recent show by McCoy Tyner was just the opposite and very sad.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've seen him 3 times: once in Ithaca, NY with the band that did the "Passengers" album (including 2 basses: Swallow on electric and Eberhard Weber on acoustic), once in 1975 at SUNY-Binghamton (my only memory of this show is that the acoustics of the room were such that when Burton hit one particular note on his vibes, the reverberation shot through my temples like a bullet, and he kept hitting that note over and over; I had to leave the concert), and once at the Bottom Line around 1993 when he performed with Rebecca Parris to support their "It's Another Day" album.  His peak for me were his early ECM albums: The New Quartet, Crystal Silence, Hotel Hello, and on through the Zurich with Corea album.  Great, great stuff.  Later on, he blanded out.  This seemed to be his intent and vision, because if his later ECMs were bland, he then went on to GRP and a bunch of really bland albums.  Ozone played on two of those bland ECMs: "Real Life Hits" and "Whiz Kids" - nothing terrible, but nothing really memorable either.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have seen him about 10 times live, and have over 25 albums by him. He has been consistently compelling to me. Some of the most memorable concerts I have seen were Burton's 1970s and early 1980s concerts with his own group, and in duet with Chick Corea. The last time I saw him was about ten years ago, leading a small group, and he was still great live.

In his autobiography, he mentions that after one of his surgeries, he lost his perfect pitch, and could no longer play as effortlessly as he could before. That may have contributed to his decision to retire.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, mr jazz said:

Seeing a recent show by McCoy Tyner was just the opposite and very sad.  

Having seen McCoy play at or near his peak, that makes me really sad..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, mr jazz said:

Seeing a recent show by McCoy Tyner was just the opposite and very sad.  

I was going to see him in NYC this Spring. You think it would be disappointing? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a fan, happy for him to be retiring. Those last two quartet albums (Common Ground, Guided Tour) and the duet with Corea (Hot House) are excellent 'swan songs'.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks so much for that Miami Herald piece! I lost it listening to Chick and Gary doing the Tiny Desk Concert. Such beautiful music. Gary will be missed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Dmitry said:

I was going to see him in NYC this Spring. You think it would be disappointing? 

I was. He was led to the stage and at times didn't seem to know where he was. He plays only chords no single notes. I saw him so any times in the 80s when he was magnificent, this performance hurt. YMMV.

7 hours ago, mr jazz said:

Every GB performance I've seen (two with Pat Metheny in clubs) has been wonderful. We spent a small fortune on our remodeling project so concerts are off the table now but seeing him again at Blues Alley would be a fitting goodbye. He's doing the right thing going out with all faculties intact.  Seeing a recent show by McCoy Tyner was just the opposite and very sad.  

We decided to go!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I bought tickets last night for his final performance, at the Jazz Kitchen in Indianapolis on March 17.  I like just about all of the mid-to-late 1960s dates (and his stint with Getz), Dreams So Real on ECM, the Like Minds CD, the duets with Corea, and much more.  I've enjoyed what I've read so far of his autobiography as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎01‎.‎03‎.‎2017 at 7:01 AM, sidewinder said:

He was a youngster when I was just getting into jazz so have always and still think of him as a youngster !

Never seen him play either but wishing him an enjoyable retirement.

Same here ! Herbie, Chick, Gary, Tony Williams was youngsters, Sonny Rollins was in his late forties, so really in his prime, McCoy was just 40, Tony Williams in his early 30´s was a baby, that´s how I felt it even if I was a teenager.  I must admit I wasn´t so much aware of Gary Burton, thought that´s more kinda ECM music, maybe that´s how I didn´t get so much involved with it as I would have with Sonny Rollins, McCoy,  Dex, Diz, Freddie Hubbard etc etc etc.......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, mr jazz said:

I was. He was led to the stage and at times didn't seem to know where he was. He plays only chords no single notes. I saw him so any times in the 80s when he was magnificent, this performance hurt. YMMV.

So sad - last time I saw him was about 10 years ago. Looked frail even then and was using a stick to get to the piano but once in place the block chording was solid and the performance very enjoyable. Even then though, couldn't compare to the performance I saw at Ronnie Scotts in 1981/82 which I still think (maybe Bill Evans excepted) is the greatest jazz I have ever witnessed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gary was in terrific form playing an interesting set-far from just "greatest hits". Highly recommend seeing him. I had a chance to chat briefly with him after the show. He was extremely nice and down to earth. I even got a pik with him.

Edited by mr jazz

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.