Listen To The Bass Player: Part 4, Paul Chambers

For the new segment of our adventure in letting bassists be our guides, author, critic and sometime Rifftides commentator Larry Kart has a fine idea. May I suggest, for Part 4, Paul Chambers behind Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Wynton Kelly and Jimmy Cobb on "So What." Like Heath and LaFaro in their various ways, where Chambers puts "one" is a place where no one who's playing with him literally is, but it's a place that all can touch and play off of. I think that's a fairly basic (no play on words … [Read more...]

Listen To The Bass Player: Part 3, Bill Crow

As you may recall from parts 1 and 2, our theme in this series is that by concentrating on the lines played by a good string bassist, you can gain an understanding of the shape and structure of a piece of music, feel its heartbeat, sense its soul. Duke Ellington's Jimmy Blanton in the early 1940s opened the possibilities of the bass as an improvising instrument in modern jazz. Oscar Pettiford followed, then Ray Brown, Charles Mingus, Red Mitchell (this is a limited and selective list) and Scott … [Read more...]