Wednesday, August 27, 2014 22:59

Archive for the ‘jazz’ Category

Meat Parade

Friday, November 15th, 2013

- Wiccapundit

Jeez, it appears that every organization established for honoring actual achievement has become what George C. Scott referred to the Oscars™ as: “a meat parade.”

Exhibit 1:

Yep.  Fucking Al Gore.   For that Global Warming Scam that he’s made beaucoup bank off of.

Exhibit # 2:

Some current nominees for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame:

Yes, Deep Purple, and Link Wray (the inventor of the fuckin’ POWER CHORD, the cornerstone of rock guitar), which means these artists are currently NOT in the Hall of Fame.

Some past inductees:

Ahmet Ertegun (Founder of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.   Ohhh, I get it.)

Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five (I yield to no one in my enjoyment of “The Message,” GF&TFF’s seminal rap hit.  But …, they are a rap groupRap.   Should Led Zeppelin be nominated for a Rap Industry Award?  In 2007, Rolling Stone publisher Jann Wenner used a technicality on the vote dating procedure to deny induction to The Dave Clark Five, because he felt the Hall couldn’t go another year without inducting a rap act.  Starting to see how things work here?)

Madonna (Oh for fuck’s sake.)

Bill Monroe (I loves me some Bill Monroe, but he was a bluegrass player, not a rock n’ roller, despite being called an “Early Influence”™ by the Hall of Fame panjandrums.)

Jelly Roll Morton (Seriously?  The self-proclaimed inventor of jazz?)

Notables who are NOT in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame:

Chicago (A rock band with a horn section, with a guitarist  – Terry Kath – that Jimi Hendrix considered way better than himself.  Think about that for a moment.)

Grand Funk Railroad (WTF?  Can you say The Red Album, people?  The group that sold out Shea Stadium quicker than the Beatles did?  You’re killing me here.)

Iron Butterfly (In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida, baby.  Who didn’t get stoned in the 70′s listening to this?)

Robin Trower (Too Rolling Stoned, Bridge of Sighs, and on and on … .)

I’m done with all this.  Any organization that would give me an award is not one I respect enough to accept an award from.

The Sex Pistols refused to attend when inducted, calling the museum “a piss stain.” That’s the rock n’ roll attitude, my friends.

Madonna. Sheesh.

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What the hell!

Thursday, April 19th, 2012

- Wiccapundit

Talent like this is just … sick.  This guy is shredding on four different instruments.  How insane is that?

Nice little vocal touch in the middle: “Maybe I should find a job, instead of wasting my time.”  Har.  And to show it’s not a fluke, here he is burning on Chick Corea’s insanely difficult “Got A Match?”

Skill like this should be illegal. Thankfully, it’s not.

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A word about critics.

Saturday, April 14th, 2012

- Wiccapundit

A “critic” is a man who creates nothing and thereby feels qualified to judge the work of creative men. There is logic in this; he is unbiased — he hates all creative people equally. – Robert Heinlein, Time Enough For Love

Your Wiccapundit was enjoying the following solo piano performance of Gershwin’s Rhapsody In Blue by Jack Gibbons, who is renowned for his note-for-note transcriptions of Gershwin’s piano roll performances.  It’s long, but it is so worth it.

This extraordinary performance (and even more extraordinary musical composition) lead me to think of one critic’s reception to the Rhapsody In Blue that was published the day after its debut performance.

How trite, feeble and conventional the tunes are; how sentimental and vapid the harmonic treatment, under its disguise of fussy and futile counterpoint! … Weep over the lifelessness of the melody and harmony, so derivative, so stale, so inexpressive!

Lawrence Gilman, New York Tribune, February 13, 1924.

Who is Lawrence Gilman, you say?  A music critic and the composer of such musical masterworks as “A Dream of Death,” “The Heart of a Woman,” and “The Curlew,”  all of which are lost in the mists of time, just as the memory of his existence is.  As for Gershwin, his work is regarded as classic American music, and is still frequently played today.

When Gershwin died at the untimely young age of 38, the best-selling author John O’Hara said: “George Gershwin died on July 11, 1937, but I don’t have to believe it if I don’t want to.”

Music critics.  What a waste of space.

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Wow. Just wow.

Saturday, December 25th, 2010

- Wiccapundit

I love scouring YouTube for videos of superb musicians.  Here are a couple that will just boggle your mind.  The first is Dr. Carol Williams at the United States Military Academy Chapel organ performing “Flight of the Bumblebee” on the Academy’s monster pipe organ.

The second is German hard-bop jazz organist Barbara Dennerlein, just crushing the groove on a Hammond B3 with Dennis Chambers on drums.  Watch her feet playing the fast walking bass line TOTALLY in the pocket. That’s talent, baby!

Damn.

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Shut up, non-productive whiners. You can become anything you want to if you want it bad enough.

Friday, March 5th, 2010

- Wiccapundit

Whenever I hear people who have never accomplished anything complain about not having any opportunities, or claim they never had a chance, or that rich/handsome/talented people get all the luck,  I want to take them by the scruff of the neck and make them watch these videos.

The performer is the late Michel Petrucciani, who suffered from osteogenesis imperfecta, a genetic condition that kept him 3 feet tall and 50 pounds as an adult.  Despite this physical disability, he became a ferociously talented and respected jazz pianist.   An article on him by The New Republic music critic David Hadju (which I have not been able to locate again), noted that as he entered a nightclub once, he yelled: “out of my way, motherf**kers.”   Apparently, he also loved sharing the joy of music with children.  Anyone that brash and that talented deserves to be remembered.

Another remarkable performance of his – a muscular and ass-kicking version of “Take the ‘A’ Train,” – is found here.  It features the legendary Steve Gadd on drums and Anthony Jackson on bass, who definitely do not suck.

Next is a video of the bluegrass group Mountain Heart.   What you may not notice at first is the banjo player, Barry Abernathy.  Around 3:09 on the video, you get a good shot of his unique playing style.  Why does he play in that unusual way?  ‘Cause he’s got no frickin’ fingers on his left hand! He was born without any.  And became a successful professional banjo player.  Damn.  Some people have ten fingers and struggle to play the radio.

Consider also the Belgian-born Gypsy-jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt, who lost two of the fingers on his left hand when he was badly burned in a fire at age 18.  He went on to become a highly respected and prolific performer.  And who do you think was inspired by him to keep playing guitar after a serious and potentially career-ending industrial accident (on his last day of work!) injured his hand?  Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath, who kinda got sorta famous after that.  So I hear.

There is nothing, and I mean nothing, that can keep you from accomplishing what you want if you simply refuse to accept limitations.

So go out there make it happen.

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