Whew… Sorry for the delay. Got waylaid in New Orleans. More on that soon.
The second installment of BYOV was held at Barbés on July 12. We had a great crew and some interesting musical selections.
For those of you playing at home, here were our themes:
a) Acoustic guitar soloists. The suggestion was acoustic jazz guitarists but I thought I’d open it up. So who’s your fav finger-picker or nylon guitar strummer?
b) Great rhythm sections. Should have a good response here. I’ll only allow one Coltrane, Miles, or Messengers record. Get creative. More points for unusual combinations.
c) Musicians with faulty technique that sound fantastic or totally works for them. Cracked notes, singing out of tune, banging pianos with fists… Let’s hear your favorite flubs or bad technique.
I was surprised at the number of acoustic guitar selections we had. Maybe because it was listed first? Good to have heard the varying approaches, though. Had a few folks for the rhythm section and a handful of the “unorthodox technique.” Inversions of these two will probably come back around.
On with the show!
1. Eugene Chadbourne – “Good Bait” from The Hills Have Jazz (Boxholder 046, 2005)
Presented by Richard Gehr – Theme: A & C – CD
As a blindfold test, Richard presented a very unique take on jazz guitar tradition. No one guessed the player.
Of course, Chadbourne has been known as an agent provocateur in the world of rock, country, folk and everything else he sets his mind on. His most high profile groups were Shockabilly and Camper Van Beethoven, though he has made tons of records under his own name.
According to Richard, Chadbourne, being a fan of horror flicks, sent a copy of Shockabilly Baby to director Wes Craven, who actually got in touch with Chadbourne. Craven dug the music and invited Chadbourne to hang on the set of the movie Cursed. The director also lent Chadbourne his prized Gibson acoustic.
Tad Dameron’s “Good Bait” was one of the standouts on this following jazzy tribute (the title was a spoof of Craven’s The Hills Have Eyes). The track showcased a swinging yet discordantly, twangy Chadbourne along with foil electric guitarist Carey Fosse and tenor saxophonist Brian Walsh. The recording was a definite departure from what was generally accepted as a Chadbourne-ian.
2. Frank Vignola – “Donna Lee” – Blues for a Gypsy (Acoustic Disc 43, 2001)
Presented by David Adler – Theme: A – CD
Vignola has been extremely well regarded as a player that can handle nearly any jazz style. On Blues for a Gypsy, he tackles the gypsy jazz reminiscent of Django Reinhardt. The CD came out on David Grisman’s Acoustic Disc label, a home for amazing, acoustic string players. Interesting to note that a lot of the old hippies adopted these acoustic folk, blues and folk forms later on (Jerry Garcia among them).
David mentioned Paul Brady’s astute comment that Django was a be-bop player. The quick eighth note and chromatic movement that was typical of Reinhardt’s playing has fit perfectly in the be-bop canon.
Vignola has carried on the tradition extremely well. I was amazed that the “gypsy” jazz style has remained so popular and studied for so long. Vignola’s solo take on the Miles Davis standard “Donna Lee” had the fleet fingered runs and in the pocket swing that Reinhardt made popular decades ago. This would be a more traditional acoustic guitar jazz setting.