Ellington in the 1950’s
cont. of excellance
Expansion of forms, and compositions
-many believed his best works are from the 1930’s and 40’s
-More sacred concerts
Ellington’s suites
Such Sweet Thunder, Suite Thursday, Nutcracker Suite, Black Brown and Beige suite
Written about a central idea
Ellington’s preoccupation with form was…
much more advanced than his contempararies
Billy Strayhorn
Ellington’s “alter ego”
-co-wrote much of the music during the period
-Liked to compose is “dark” keys
Billy Strayhorn wrote
“Take A Train, Lush Life” and collaborated on the suites
Billy Strayhorn flourished
in Ellington’s shadow
It was difficult to discern where Ellington’s style ended and Billy Strayhorn’s began
Sonet in Search of a Moor
Duke Ellington
– wrote in same form as Shakespear
Up and Down (Midsummer Night Dreams)
Pairs up instruments to represent the couples from the play
-changes it up to represent Puck’s plans
Clark Terry
Trumpet player
played the quote “Lord what fools these mortals be” through use of mute in “Up and Down”
John Coltrane
After Charlie Parker the most widely imitated saxaphonist in Jazz
-Heavily influenced by Bird
Worked with Monk in 1957
Addiction to drugs and alcohol disrupted his career
John Coltrane overcame
his addictions
“A Love Supreme” celebrates the victory and the religious experience associated with it.
John Coltrane believed
in a universal musical structures which transcended ethnic distinctions (Musica Universalis)
Coltrane turned to …
radical musical style in the mid 1960’s attracted large audiences
After Coltrane’s death, developed a cult following
Had a church named after him in San Fransisco
John Coltrane
Improvised from formulae
-Patterned oriented, rigid eighth note repetitions
John Coltrane
Coltrane’s impressive technique
yielded sheets of sounds
Entrenched in the “Thesaurus of Musical Scales”
Coltrane’s Influence
Enormous impact on contemporaries and future players
-Re-established saprano sax as a modern jazz instrument
-sold hundreds of thousands of albums in his final years, and established Avant-Garde jazz as popular
Miles and Hard Bop
Used a sextet rather than a quintet
Played standard tunes rather than originals
Used Cannonball Adderley on Alto sax
Bye Bye Blackbird
Stella by Starlight
Miles Davis’s First Band
Miles Davis
John Coltrane
Bill Evans
Cannonball Adderly
Jimmy Cobb
Paul Chambers
Kind of Blue
Recorded in 1959.
Most important and pivotal album in modern jazz.
Significance of “Kind of Blue”
A set of inspired improvisations by an all-star band.
A significant departure from traditional bop-derived styles.
Introduced the format of Modal Jazz
Modal Jazz
Affected the Harmonic Rhythm
(the speed of the change in harmony)
Harmonies of a single chord or scale remain in effect for several measures.
“So What”
Miles Davis
Based on one mode, Dorian (minor scale with a raised 6th scale degree)
AABA form, the bridge is the same as the A sections, except one-half step higher.
Miles only leaves the mode twice during his solo.
“Blue and Green”
Written by Bill Evans
The overall form is a palindrome
Harmonic rhythm speeds up and slows down
10 5 2.5 5 10
Miles Davis’s second band
Wayne Shorter (Saxophone)
Herbie Hancock (Piano)
Tony Williams (Drums)
Ron Carter (Bass)