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ghost of miles

New Thelonious Monk album

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I'm with those who prefer disc 1.

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Well - I listened again to disc 2. It's actually just fine when I skip the last 14 minute track. :alien::ph34r:

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I wish AT would have figured it out at least long enough to hear it performed with real confidence for more than 2-3 bars. I mean, I can hear what it's supposed to be, a kind of displaced 3/4 inside a 4/4 bar, , like 1 2 3 4  1 2 3 4  1 2 3 4  1 2 3 4 etc. 1 is silent, bass drum on 2, snare on 3 and 4.

That's a really cool beat, but AT keeps wanting to slip into a simple oom-pah-pah 3/4, which if anything I think reveals how "limited" a lot of jazz was in terms, not of syncopation, but layering, not odd meters, but poly-meters (if you can call that a poly-meter, and since it's the same thing every bar, I don't think you can). It's a little, uh, slippery, but not really all that slippery (thus, I think, Monk chiding AT for being a "stupid motherfucker").

Let it be noted that such metric superimposition/displacement was part and parcel of the "Tristano school" almost from the beginning. Not like this, of course, but still, thinking about deliberate metrical tricksterisms.

Anyway, if and when I get a band together again, that's going to be a project for it, to play "Light Blue" as Monk "originally intended".

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Ended up listening to disc 2 in the car and pardon the expression but the last track was a car wreck, in all ways except me actually crashing while listening to it. :g  I do plan to listen to it without road noise or distractions, but in the car, hearing what was said was not really easy so it was just breakdown after breakdown.

So, listen to that - once, then I'm done.

Oh, and the rest of it I'll enjoy many times in the future.

 

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To me that "making of" Light Blue sounds like Monk, too, has a problem in finding his way into the rhythm, but once he starts in the right spot, AT falls out. Maybe he couldn' t hear it properly the way AT accentuated the pattern. Serious rhythmic coordination problems with the off-beat drum pattern Monk conceived. Oh my ... 

AT never was that good at other rhythms than straight ahead swing, IIRC.

Edited by mikeweil

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One more thought: Why didn't he let AT find his own way like Roy Haynes and Frankie Dunlop on the (live) recordings before and after the soundtrack sessions? It's remarkable that there is no other studio recording of Light Blue by Monk.

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Maybe he was drug with AT and wanted to fuck with him? I listened really closely to the conversations, and Monk seems to know exactly what he wants. I think part of the problem is that the melody has a really strong downbeat, it lands hard on the one, and the drumming instinct, I think, is to also hit the bass drum on that one. But no, that's not what Monk was cueing. A couple of times he gets pretty math-specific about it.

But playing with that pattern in my head...it could be though of as a slo-mo,variant of a "Heart And Soul"-type shuffle, one-and TWO-AND three-and FOUR-AND one-and TWO-AND three-and FOUR-AND, etch. Half that, stiffen it up, and the math is the same - 1 2 3 4  1 2 3 4  1 2 3 4  1 2 3 4 etc.

When it comes to decisionings of things like time, I've give Monk the benefit of the doubt always.

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4 hours ago, JSngry said:

Maybe he was drug with AT ....

An indication for that would be that this soundtrack was AT's last session with the pianist. Monk went to San Francisco in October with bassist John Ore, but without a drummer! next regular drummer with Monk was Frankie Dunlop, early in 1961.

If you look at the Monk tunes on the preceding studio sessions of Monk with AT for the "Five by Monk by Five" album, two new tunes with phrase displacements, "Jackie-Ing" and "Played Twice", and an older one using that method, the masterpiece "Straight No Chaser". "I Mean You" on the album uses similar techniques. Displaced prases and off beat accents. There you are.

Edited by mikeweil

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2 hours ago, mikeweil said:

An indication for that would be that this soundtrack was AT's last session with the pianist. Monk went to San Francisco in October with bassist John Ore, but without a drummer! next regular drummer with Monk was Frankie Dunlop, early in 1961.

 

Sounds like your chronology is right. I saw Monk with Ore and Dunlop (and Rouse, of course) at the Free Trade Hall, Manchester in April 1961.

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Looked up this film on Wikipedia and saw that a soundtrack with other music by Duke Jordan and Art Blakey was previously released:

  1. "No Problem (1st Version)" – 7:23
  2. "No Hay Problema" – 4:35
  3. "Prelude In Blue (À "L' Esquinade")" – 6:59
  4. "Valmontana (1st Version)"- 4:46
  5. "Miguel's Party" – 4:23
  6. "Prelude In Blue (Chez Miguel)" – 5:54
  7. "No Problem (2nd Version)" – 6:00
  8. "Weehawken Mad Pad" – 1:50
  9. "Valmontana (2nd Version)" – 4:33
  10. "No Hay Problema (2nd Version)" – 3:53 Bonus track on CD reissue

    It's available on Amazon in a couple of versions.

    Cheers, RM

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