Jump to content

Friday Influences Thread 10-21-11


Lee Knight

Recommended Posts

  • Moderators

Well alright! What's been inspiring you to be the great troubadour you are? Or what did inspire your young sponge many moons ago. Either or. Yesterday or a trip in the Way Back Machine.

 

But either way... don't be a stinge, post it for the betterment of all us hapless song geeks. It's only fair. In other words, it's not for you, it's for us.

 

So I bring you this bit of music. It really is unlike anything. And before you think you know what it is and pass it by, just give 1 minute and 30 seconds to let it unfold a bit. A really exceptional piece of tuneage.

 

[video=youtube;94lCeENLDLs]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=94lCeENLDLs

 

More info for anyone who cares: I got this album when it came out in '76. I was 16 and just digging in as a studying musician. There was lots of hoopla among young musicians at the time with the whole fusion thing. I was just as enamored by Johnny Winter, Tommy Bolin and ZZ Top as I was Count Basie, Joe Pass, Ella or Chick Corea. The seeds of punk were sprouting as well. So fusion was less a "happening" for me and really just another source of both great and crappy music.

 

But when I got Aurora, the Jean Luc Ponty album with the above tune Renaissance on it... well, the simple yet musically informed melody line. Ditto for its harmony. Wow. There's power in that line against its harmony. Blew my mind. I began writing small ensemble jazz pieces. Flugelhorn, flute, Rhoads and drum kit. Very 70's. My already existing love of melody I developed as a radio kid got a kick in the ass and I dove in writing melodies with simple accompaniment.

 

And the piano on this tune? It's Patrice Rushen who later became the R&B pop songstress. She got her start in jazz and her solo here is so musical without an ounce of fusionitus. Ditto for Daryl Stuermer's guitar work. Stuermer of course went on to Zappa and later he became that dude playing guitar on all those Phil Collins videos.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

Nile is doing press for his new memoir/autobiography. As a player, he really has internalized that Zen "less is more" paradox: the fewer notes you voice, the bigger your chords sound; the fewer beats you play, the more rhythmic you sound.

 

As a songwriter, I love his description of how he wrote one of his biggest hits. 'Basically, I was just trying to come up with a groove Bernie could walk over". Indeed. When you've got Bernard Edwards in your band, by all means, let him walk.

 

[video=youtube;eKl6EZShaaw]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eKl6EZShaaw

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

There was an article in the NYTimes last weekend which described my college experience to a T:

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/16/books/review/i-was-an-under-age-semiotician.html?ref=books

 

In addition to being ludicrous, it was also, (for the time) quite expensive, and I've always gotten a big laugh out of the couplet:

 

"Educated the expensive way

He knows his Claret from his Beaujolais"

 

perhaps due to the fact that, despite my expensive education, I have no idea how to tell the difference between a Claret and a Beaujolais.

 

[video=youtube;p1a_4CN4onA]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators

 

 

 

Damon Albarn

 

I don't hear him mentioned much lately but I'm still in awe of his mix of pop cool, punk who gives a.., an almost DJ like appreciation for other's stuff and ability to fold it into his own, and his arty soul... sans the Thom York pretense. And he can channel Ian Hunter and Ray Davies all at once. So when I hear a Gorillaz track or catch some live footage, he just strikes me as one cool dude. Brilliant but delivering stupid. Like Monk. I love his stuff.

 

[video=youtube;BG5mFily1aI]

 

[video=youtube;BdAXIj5QViw]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

 


More info for anyone who cares: I got this album when it came out in '76. I was 16 and just digging in as a studying musician. There was lots of hoopla among young musicians at the time with the whole fusion thing. I was just as enamored by Johnny Winter, Tommy Bolin and ZZ Top as I was Count Basie, Joe Pass, Ella or Chick Corea. The seeds of punk were sprouting as well. So fusion was less a "happening" for me and really just another source of both great and crappy music.


But when I got Aurora, the Jean Luc Ponty album with the above tune Renaissance on it... well, the simple yet musically informed melody line. Ditto for its harmony. Wow. There's power in that line against its harmony. Blew my mind. I began writing small ensemble jazz pieces. Flugelhorn, flute, Rhoads and drum kit. Very 70's. My already existing love of melody I developed as a radio kid got a kick in the ass and I dove in writing
melodies
with simple accompaniment.


And the piano on this tune? It's Patrice Rushen who later became the R&B pop songstress. She got her start in jazz and her solo here is so musical without an ounce of fusionitus. Ditto for Daryl Stuermer's guitar work. Stuermer of course went on to Zappa and later he became that dude playing guitar on all those Phil Collins videos.

 

 

 

Cool tune. I am very intrigued to hear your small ensemble jazz pieces.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators

 

Cool tune. I am very intrigued to hear your small ensemble jazz pieces.

 

 

No recordings. It was high school in the 70's. I do however remember one piece and its basic arrangement. I may dig it up and rearrange. When I was doing that, it was very straight harmony. But the tone of the work was like early Mangione or the Ponty piece without the hip harmony.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

No recordings. It was high school in the 70's. I do however remember one piece and its basic arrangement. I may dig it up and rearrange. When I was doing that, it was very straight harmony. But the tone of the work was like early Mangione or the Ponty piece without the hip harmony.

 

I have a back-burner project to do a cover of "Feels So Good". As a kid, I loved that tune. :love:

 

[video=youtube;V7dg8vRDM68]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators

Yes. ^ A musician's wet dream. Not particularly a stunner, but when you combine her femininity with her musicianship and musicalty... schwing fforte! Costello has always had great taste.

 

I love this one cowritten with her husband Elvis Costello. Makes me long for the days when Elvis sang well...

 

[video=youtube;QQkbb_QOnGQ]

 

The girl in the other room

She knows by now

There's something in all of her fears

Now she wears this thread bare

She sits on the floor

The glass pressed tight to the wall

She hears murmurs low

The paper is peeling

Her eyes staring straight at the ceiling

 

Maybe they're there

Or maybe it's nothing at all

As she draws lipstick smears on the wall

 

The girl in the other room

She powders her face

And stares hard into her reflection

 

The girl in the other room

She stifles a yawn

Adjusting the strap of her gown

She tosses her tresses

Her lover undresses

Turning the last lamp light down

What's that voice we're hearing

We should be sleeping

Could that be someone who's weeping

Maybe she's there

Maybe there's nothing to see

Just a trace of what used to be

The girl in the other room

She darkens her lash and blushes

She seems to look familiar

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

This is one of the most devastating songs about war -- and the long and lonely aftermath for the survivors -- I've ever heard...

 

[video=youtube;7z_dUOhkygY]

 

... So they collected the cripples, the wounded, the maimed

 

And they shipped us back home to Australia

 

The armless, the legless, the blind, the insane

 

Those proud wounded heroes of Suvla

 

And as our ship pulled into Circular Quay

 

I looked at the place where my legs used to be

 

And thank Christ there was nobody waiting for me

 

To grieve and to mourn and to pity

 

 

 

And the band played Waltzing Matilda

 

As they carried us down the gangway

 

But nobody cheered, they just stood and stared

 

Then turned all their faces away
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators

James Burton, no doubt. But Ricky Nelson. He was so much better than he might have been. He had as many obstacles as he did advantages from his high profile Hollywood upbringing. His dad and mom both being professional musicians might be a boost. Then again, his teen idol looks might get in the way of really learning craft. But he was good.

 

He really nailed the performances with lots of emotion and his on-the-shy-side swagger. Equal parts Elvis and the Everlys...

 

[video=youtube;0janfcZ8LUw]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

Just started getting into Amos Lee, but I like this song in particular. Been playing it at some open mics lately. Really allows me to dig into my "soul" voice, which is fun. Makes me consider incorportaing more soul elements into my own style in the future. I really like the video too--very clever:

 

[video=youtube;aW85s8wX1LE]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

In college I used to crank up Zappa in the off-campus housing apartment complex where I lived with my buddy, and sometime musical partner, Mark Emmett. (He played bass, I sang lead and played harp in a little blues group called Colonel Boogie.)

 

As a DJ in the 1970s, I loved to play Chuck Mangione, especially late at night, when I could play the full-length album version (around 9 minutes long). When I moved to NYC in the 1980s, I moved around a lot. Long story short, I once lived in a building (not far from where I live now), and Chuck Mangione lived there too. I saw him a lot, in the elevator or coming through the lobby.

 

Cut to 2011: my latest tune, "It's Always Summer in My Mind," was inspired by two of my constant inspirations, Brian Wilson and Johnny Mercer, specifically "Your Summer Dream" and "Autumn Leaves." It was also inspired by another old standard, one that has no rhymes at all, and where each of the verses is written in the form of a haiku: 5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables: "Moonlight in Vermont" (not to be confused with the Captain Beefheart song, "Moonlight On Vermont").

 

[video=youtube;DT0UiD6QSIc]

 

[video=youtube;pfEcGZ4D5Y4]

 

[video=youtube;YnsawgAEeos]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YnsawgAEeos

 

LCK

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

 

James Burton, no doubt. But Ricky Nelson. He was so much better than he might have been. He had as many obstacles as he did advantages from his high profile Hollywood upbringing. His dad and mom both being professional musicians might be a boost.

 

 

They might be, and were in a way, but they were also a hindrance. I think they had reservations about rock-and-roll. Nelson had to overcome a few obstacles there.

 

But what a voice. Easy, natural, tender, yet masculine. Kind of like Sinatra in that department.

 

[video=youtube;-4iBMbwdxPQ]

 

LCK

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...