Monday, October 01, 2007

Vibraharp, part 2

As promised, here's Milt Jackson. Unfortunately, the sound quality doesn't do justice to his playing, but there you go.
For the record, he is the swingingest m-f- ever. One of the main reasons I got into playing jazz in the first place is that I saw a concert of the Modern Jazz Quartet at the Berlin Philharmonic with my friend Warner P. And the concert bowled me over. They were promoting their Ellington album at the time.
For what it's worth, I was worried, going in, that the "Modern" in the MJQ would refer to something like the Art Ensemble of Chicago. I was really only fulfilling a concert requirement for a music class. But, man, what a pleasant surprise.
Connie Kay on drums was this giant (6ft something) playing on a mininal drum set; Percy Heath was stoic and steady; John Lewis minimalist and square; and Milt Jackson was just swinging like mad.
Never before this concert had I realized how much "play" is involved in playing music. The contrast of styles between John Lewis and Milt Jackson just made songs soar. Awesome stuff.
And yet, none of their albums really captured that spirit for me. Which just made me buy more, of course. I'd recommend "No Sun in Venice" and "Pyramid," but they're all tantalizingly near-great.

(Bear with Sanborn's yacking; the song is worth it.)

No comments: