I came across a blog curated by music college administrator and blogger Allan Chase with a detailed interview with pianist Bill Evans. (Lester Bowie’s was like a favorite comedy record — hilarious as well as insightful). So often the person that has to go through a more laborious, long, digging, analytical process finally arrives at something which is much more precious. It’s really a professional, laborious process of bringing yourself back up, and you can often get to a superior take that way, but it becomes a lot of work, but if you can get that first fresh take and it’s good enough, generally that’s a real good one. To read our privacy and cookies policy, please click here. traditional chord changes…. And certainly, some of his greatest talents are as a leader and as a person that can perceive talent and potential in people, which is proven out by all of the wonderful talents that have gone through his group. And the rest of it is being professional and, certainly as professionals, you do reach a high degree of performance in the area that you’re trying to work, but those special times, you don’t know when they’re gonna happen, and, unfortunately, we don’t get too many of them on record. Check them out, if you have the time. So, I’m sharing it here. Ashley Kahn, the author of an authoritative and enjoyable book on Kind of Blue, quotes from the interview and, I believe, draws conclusions from it in his book (at least partly). It just seemed to click. I was told on Tuesday, just a rumor that’s flying around, that Miles was in a studio. He was more or less withdrawn, plus sort of off to the side of the bandstand, sort of half, not fumbling exactly, but just sort of searching. We were both living away from Phoenix for the first time as adults, and I took the train to NYC as much as I could to hear music. And I don’t know who all he listened to, but that’s the way he would sort of pick up things, and I don’t think; I think he certainly did listen. I thought, if you shared my enthusiasm, they perhaps could be linked somehow to your blogspot.. I’ve shared this quotation from trumpeter, composer and band leade... © Copyright ® Steven Cerra, copyright protected; all rights reserved. In the summer of 1979, my good friend from Phoenix, the great drummer Lewis Nash (then 20 years old) was staying with the family of a friend of his in Bronxville, N.Y., and studying with Freddie Waits, Billy Hart, and Andrew Cyrille, and hearing as much music as possible. No, I thought it had to be a good record with the personnel that was involved, and, also, I think that was perhaps the first time that Miles had ever recorded an album where it was largely his compositions. I think one thing that, in listening to the music of Miles through the years, that comes through, is that like technically or just as a trumpeter he does so much, it’s not; I mean like some people relate primarily to his muted style, and certain things that he was doing then. : You had spoken in your liner notes about comparing those sessions to Japanese paintings in which you have to draw lightly or else it breaks through the parchment. But Miles is truly a stylist, but that’s mainly because he’s a strong, independent personality, and does things his own way, and always has, and just what we were talking about. For instance, that whole thing about turning his back on the audience and everything. William John Evans (August 16, 1929 – September 15, 1980) was an American jazz pianist and composer who mostly played in trios. After catching a recent screening of the Miles Davis documentary. I mean, this may be just a long break, for what reason, I don’t know. In that sense, Miles is one of the all-time master technicians, in that he could play something which is an entirely original conception over something that’s very ordinary. After a few plays it became increasingly difficult to hear harmonies played with less density and tension. Some people try to be a stylist by being eccentric, and that’s not really being a stylist. traditional chord changes…, Yeah, mm-hmm. It was through a cover story in a 1960 Downbeat magazine that I discovered pianist Bill Evans. But what Philly said alarmed me, so Philly says, “I’ll meet you over there.” I said, “Great.” So, I went over there expecting Joe to be there already, but Joe hadn’t arrived, and didn’t during the time I was visiting. We were both living away from Phoenix for the first time as adults, and I took the train to NYC as much as I could to hear music. I came across a blog curated by music college administrator and blogger Allan Chase with a detailed interview with pianist Bill Evans. And at the end of it, it had an identity and that’s why he’s a stylist. I could hear it in Marvin Gaye’s music years down the road; Little Anthony and the Imperials, jazz, soul, pop, they all owed Evans a firm handshake. “Easy-going” is an expression that fitted the late tenor saxophonist... © Copyright ® Steven Cerra, copyright protected; all rights reserved. His talk with Mr. Ginibre is one of the earliest in-depth interviews with Bill ever featured in a major Jazz publication. But I understand that Gil and he are involved in some kind of a project now to record, or to record and tour, or something. And I sketched out Blue in Green, which was my tune, and I sketched out the melody and the changes to it for the guys, and Flamenco Sketches was something that Miles and I did together that morning before the date. For me, the opportunity to get those chords under my hands just increases my appreciation of Evans's artistry. Series: Jazz Transcriptions Format: Softcover Artist: Bill Evans The ultimate collection for jazz keyboardists to learn 40 Evans classics with exact note-for-note transcriptions. In the summer of 1980, the last trio (with Marc Johnson, Joe LaBarbera) was in the midst of a European tour which had them for two weeks at the famed RONNIE SCOTT's in London, as well as performances in Germany, Belgium, Norway and Italy. Style’s the hardest thing to get, and it’s not something you really strive for. They don’t have the ability to discard and add, and what they really do is reflect the scene and it’s a marvelous talent that they have, and I love to hear them play, but as real contributors and so forth they don’t add up that much. First of all, what do you want from a creative musician? Some people try to be a stylist by being eccentric, and that’s not really being a stylist. I didn’t have Miles’s number because he changes it quite frequently. He showed me one change on that which gave that whole structure a different thing. Yeah, that may have had something to do with it: just the fact that there were new kind of challenges to play off, and there was a simplicity about the charts that was remarkable, too. And that may account for some of the success of this album, that all of those takes are the first takes. They don’t have the ability to discard and add, and what they really do is reflect the scene and it’s a marvelous talent that they have, and I love to hear them play, but as real contributors and so forth they don’t add up that much. You understand what I’m talking about. So that is right, he is a stylist. : Yeah. “Bill had this quiet fire that I loved on piano. The way he approached it, the sound he got was like crystal notes or sparkling water cascading down from some clear waterfall. I don’t know what it was, really. I didn’t have Miles’s number because he changes it quite frequently. So, it was all just rumor. Interview date: 1st January 1965 Interview source: Jazz Professional Image source credit: Image source URL: Reference number: Interview Transcription. He just strived to be himself, to learn, to develop, and to express a strong, independent personality. Oh, I first heard Miles on the very first records he made. A lot has been said about the use of modes [and less?] But anyhow, that’s, you can’t second-guess Miles. As he moved into the sixties, he started to really get, more of, move away from that a little bit and just smoke, in every sense of the word. I had to change the way the band sounded again for Bill’s style by playing different tunes, softer ones at first,” Davis said. Unfortunately, many of our best, yeah, performances are out there in the universe someplace, and you still as professionals have to go in at ten o’clock on Wednesday and make a record and hope that every few records you might catch a really good day. Two interviews conducted with his Trio (1966 and 1968). … Like, , I think the introduction was written out single line, and Paul and I played it and added a little harmony to it. And Miles is my favorite kind of artist. Technique we always think of as being a thing having to do with fastness, too, you know, and technique is, in its highest sense, is the ability to handle musical materials. Bill Evans - The Creative Process and Self-Teaching - YouTube I made an intro with an aborted session track. Bill Evans Interview – On Icewind Dale 2. So, it’s kind of remarkable from that standpoint, too, and I think maybe that accounts for some of the real freshness. Until the arrival of the LP, I’d been locked to the piano with pianist Oscar Peterson, Phineas Newborn, George Shearing and Dave Brubeck. There’s a certain kind of people that are more or less late arrivers, you can – even though he was certainly on the scene and known and respected – you can hear him building his abilities from the beginning very consciously and very aware of every note he played, theoretically and motivically and everything. And certainly, some of his greatest talents are as a leader and as a person that can perceive talent and potential in people, which is proven out by all of the wonderful talents that have gone through his group. You go down, and then you have to start working your way up. He’s up there giving you his soul and you want him to do the acrobatics, stand on his head and what? So, in some ways he’s gotten a bad rap many times. (Specifically the recent Roy DuNann piece..) So first of all: thanks for that! On So What, I think the introduction was written out single line, and Paul and I played it and added a little harmony to it. Would British writer Geoff Dyer, for example, have found Bud Powell, Charles Mingus, Art Pepper, and the other walking pathologies celebrated in his BUT BEAUTIFUL (Farrar, Straus, 1996) so fascinating had it not been for the music they made? Miles was very much an independent person, like, I know that when I was hanging out with him, he liked people as different as, well he was very influenced by Ahmad Jamal for a while. But of course, the people involved were pretty gigantic when you stop and think of it. I have listened to Miles music in its various incarnations my whole life without ever knowing much about the personalities and musical sensibilities of the players. so simple, but so beautiful, so perfect just to have the idea to do that. : No, I thought it had to be a good record with the personnel that was involved, and, also, I think that was perhaps the first time that Miles had ever recorded an album where it was largely his compositions. I found myself being attracted to artists who have developed through the years to become better and deeper musicians.”, He revisits this concept, as well as, applying it to Miles Davis in the following rare interview in which he recounts the story of how the iconic Miles Davis, Bill King is a jazz columnist and co-host of Soul Nation on JAZZ.FM91. The second interviewer was Eddie Karp (according to Ashley Kahn), and the only known broadcast was July 4, 1979, on WKCR-FM in New York City, as part of the 126-hour Miles Davis Festival. That “stylist” almost seems to have a rather limiting kind of quality to it. You could get to a point where if you played any more notes it would be funny. Evans tucked himself away in the corner of the brain in such a way that it was as if life was one eternal cycle of springtime — renewal and rebirth. After a few plays it became increasingly difficult to hear harmonies played with less density and tension. Technique we always think of as being a thing having to do with fastness, too, you know, and technique is, in its highest sense, is the ability to handle musical materials. Now those are two of perhaps four or five things that he ever said to me about music; you know what I mean. The interview was broadcast on July 4, 1979, shortly after it was recorded (at Bill Evans’s apartment, exact date unknown) as part of the 126-hour Miles Davis Festival on WKCR FM, the Columbia University station in New York City. Icewind Dale 2 is a multiplayer game developed by Black Isle Studios and published by Interplay Entertainment. :Yeah, that’s a tremendous maturity, and yeah, it is, it certainly is. But I think one thing we do know is it’s a good thing because we intuitively committed to ourselves to it for that reason. Do you recall how old you were at that time and what album it was? That “stylist” almost seems to have a rather limiting kind of quality to it. Since 1996, while continuing to teach and play, Chase has also been NEC’s chair of jazz studies and improvisation (1996 to 2001); dean of faculty, supervising classroom curriculum including jazz and contemporary improvisation (2000 to 2006); co-chair and then chair of contemporary improvisation (2005 to 2008); acting chair of liberal arts (2007 to 2008); and Berklee’s chair of ear training (2008 to present). Problem is; nobody's listening to them.. But that’s kind of a picture of the date, and it was all done in one afternoon as far as I can remember. So, I’m sharing it here. I was living in Philadelphia, starting a PhD program at Penn in music history and theory that I soon decided was not for me. He would walk around behind and say to you [in a softer voice] “Take two choruses,” or “You play next.” Or, you know, whatever. A fantastic read, very enjoyable. For instance, on Green Dolphin Street, the vamp changes — on the original changes, of course, aren’t that way — the vamp changes would be like a major 7th up a minor third, down a half tone, down a half tone. But that’s kind of a touchy notion. is a blues, it’s a particular kind of blues, it has a particular kind of structure, and it’s all contained in the chart, really. He showed me one change on that which gave that whole structure a different thing. I think you just have to perceive it from what he’s playing and what he’s feeling and sense and know kind of where it’s at somehow. Reception. Unfortunately, many of our best, yeah, performances are out there in the universe someplace, and you still as professionals have to go in at ten o’clock on Wednesday and make a record and hope that every few records you might catch a really good day. The way he approached it, the sound he got was like crystal notes or sparkling water cascading down from some clear waterfall. [Laughs.] She mentioned that you had just spoken to Miles. Please click on image to be redirected to Ricardo's website for order information. : Well, that’s a simple way to say it. [interjecting] Well, we all feel that way. Includes: Alice in Wonderland • Autumn Leaves • Bill's Hit Tune • Blue in Green • Days of Wine and Roses • Emily • Everything Happens to Me • Five • For Nenette • How About You? It seemed like, the intensity, that he, his leadership on stage was so phenomenal, it was subtle but so strong, that it didn’t seem like it could be captured on record. ", “Jazz musicians are their music. That’s about it. It’s like, on All Blues it seems like there’s certain simple ideas that Miles uses, particularly in his chorus at the end of the piece [unintelligible?] We both listened to these interviews so much that we memorized them. I was still listening, though by now I had it memorized.’ His fascination with the recording led to his decision to put Evans on the cover of Downbeat’s December 1960 edition.”. Until the arrival of the LP, I’d been locked to the piano with pianist Oscar Peterson, Phineas Newborn, George Shearing and Dave Brubeck. I think you just have to perceive it from what he’s playing and what he’s feeling and sense and know kind of where it’s at somehow. But it turns out to be a very key thing, something that changes the character of the whole thing. BILL EVANS INTERVIEW from August 1980 . (1964) Trio 64 (1964) Nirvana (1964) Trio 64 is an album by American jazz musician Bill Evans, released in 1964. I sometimes wonder whether they really did. I had the privilege of hearing Bill Evans live many years ago. And that’s what he got to, I guess, by this time. And my first reaction was that this music could not be captured on record. And I don’t think we would have had Coltrane or known Coltrane’s potential or the great contributions that he’s made, except for Miles and Miles’s belief in his potential. Bill Evans with Tony Bennett on Johnny Carson's Tonight Show 10/27/75. and it’s almost as intense as seeing a live concert, just watching him, he’s so, he’s thinking so hard about the solo, just watching him with the other members of the group solo. We heard Jimmy Cobb on one amazing evening at the Tin Palace (a double bill of Dewey Redman’s and Clifford Jordan’s quartets) and Philly Joe Jones there on another night. And he loved Blossom Dearie, who I love also. It was sometime in the late ’90s when I interviewed jazz journalist Gene Lees, who was central in elevating the mystique and publicizing the artistry of the brilliant pianist. It was taped by Bill Goldberg at Bill Evans’s Fort Lee, N.J., apartment — not at a radio studio — with interviewer Goldberg, and is shared with his written permission. He’s a guy that will turn his mind toward certain areas of music or certain people and decide that there’s somebody or something or an area of music that he can learn from, and then he will. But that’s kind of a touchy notion. Ok, so that’s basically it.. A lot has been said about the use of modes [and less?] Other than that, the charts were just spoken, just saying like “play this figure,” “you play this note, you play this note.”, , which was my tune, and I sketched out the melody and the changes to it for the guys, and, was something that Miles and I did together that morning before the date. Now, whether or not it will happen, I don’t know. Two important notes: 1: there’s absolutely no commercial incentive involved here 2: the podcasts are a hundred percent non stop music, so no talking, jingles or add’s etc. He just strived to be himself, to learn, to develop, and to express a strong, independent personality. For people that are considered to be the most unstable, undisciplined members of society, the fact is that they bring to bear a kind of a discipline on their work that is practically unparalleled. A Bill Evans Primer. And the other thing was that the first complete performance of each thing is what you’re hearing, like the, Miles ran over the charts maybe a couple times, say “do this, do that,” and then he laid out a structure, like you solo first or whatever. I wonder if people told you you sounded like Bill Evans because Bill, Ahmad, and yourself are all dedicated to voice-leading. (Lester Bowie’s was like a favorite comedy record — hilarious as well as insightful). Evans would join Miles Davis’s band in April, 1958, replacing pianist Red Garland. Yeah, well, I had been talking to Philly Joe and the rumors go around. I thought maybe instead of doing one ostinato, we could move through two or three or four or five different levels that would relate to each other and make a cycle, and he agreed, and we worked at it at the piano until we arrived at the five levels that we used. : Oh, I first heard Miles on the very first records he made. Interview Three: The Bill Evans Trio Pt. It’s true, he has a charisma. To me the duo is jazz  stripped down to... © - Steven Cerra , copyright protected; all rights reserved. But I understand that Gil and he are involved in some kind of a project now to record, or to record and tour, or something.

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