Colin Bates

A friend of mine recently forwarded me a few out of print records that his jazz pianist uncle, Colin Bates played on. Colin Bates was an Australian pianist who moved to the UK and played with pretty much everybody there during England’s postwar ‘swing renaissance’. Two of these records are George Melley recordings. Melley, who […]

Spiders on the Keys

Listening to James Booker, half crazy and in the final years of his hard life make spine tingling music on this horrible saloon upright takes the term ‘it is a bad craftsman who blames his tools’ to a new level. These recordings were taken from hundreds of hours of tapes from Booker’s ‘77-82 solo piano […]

Continental Divide

Target Show : Dallas Target Year : 1979 The Dallas theme song really kicks ass. Here I have written something that attempts to maintain the epic scope and make things a little more overtly ‘western’ without getting into Morricone turf. Continental Divde

Keep On Truckin

Target Show : Sanford and Son Target Year : 1973 Quincy Jones really nailed it with the Sanford and Son theme (“The Streetbeater”). This is something I wrote in the style. I really wanted to use a nasty Miles Davis ‘Live-Evil’ wah trumpet for the lead but my trumpet samples did not cut it so […]

Making Friends with the Whole Tone Scale

This is an interesting scale that can be both used and abused in jazz and can create an ethereal ‘dreamy/spacey’ quality in soundtrack compositions. Key properties: Six note and Symmetrical (equal degrees between notes) Only two them cover all of the keys. (WT0 and WT1) Impossible to construct either a major or a minor triad […]

The Prowler

Target Show : Knight Rider Target Year : 1982 I got into an early 80’s cheesefest one Sunday that lead to this. It also lead to some complaints in my apartment building but that is only because some people just don’t get it and never will. I always thought the Knight Rider theme was hilarious […]

Sounds and Scores – Mancini

This is Henry Mancini’s famous book on orchestration. Every musician should own a copy. It has been around for many years in many formats but exists now as a book with accompanying CD. Sometimes I just like listening to the example CD and reading trough the score like it is a very cool story album. […]

Remembering Michael Brecker

My Highschool had was a music ‘listening room’ with a bunch of tapedecks, record players, reel-to-reels and library of jazz records and tapes. It was a hidden and underutilized place. Only me and a few other megamusicnerds ever used it and I was usually in there completely alone. I used to hide out in there […]

Naturally – Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings

I have had this CD lying around for a while and finally listened to it. What a refreshing blast. This Brooklyn band is really doing oldschool soul/funk right. The band is as relaxed-tight and Tower of Power. There is neither ensemble overplaying nor any gratuitous displays of individual instrumental virtuosity. Sharon Jones is a powerfully […]

Red Garland Block Chords

Red Garland’s block chords are arguably his most famous stylistic contribution to jazz piano. While overuse tends to make you sound a bit on the loungy side of things and can make you sound like a Garland wannabe (for better or worse), judicious use of this trick can come in handy in a number of […]

« Previous PageNext Page »