Computers and Music
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
The new Song Search by Tapping web site is ready for use! It's where you tap the rhythm of a song and it will try to guess the song name. You can also train the system to learn new songs. Please give it a try and let me know what you think!
Monday, August 29, 2005
In the spirit of sharing musical ideas, I thought I'd share with you a few tracks from a live show that we did last weekend.

MP3 - All the Things You Are

MP3 - All of Me

MP3 - All Blues

We enjoyed performing and hope that someone might find these tracks somewhat interesting or useful. Feedback is always appreciated!
Saturday, August 27, 2005
I was walking along Commercial Drive today after eating, and I almost reached my car when I heard the strains of a live jazz band emanating from one of the restaurants. Curiosity piqued my interest and I crossed the street to investigate.

It turns out that the place was Rime restaurant (1130 Commercial Drive) where Vancouver drummer Morgan Childs and his top notch jazz band were featuring the original work of pianist and composer Amanda Tosoff (who was on piano in today's band!) I didn't catch the names of all the musicians but I was impressed by their obvious and serious dedication to their art. Another audience member asked Morgan Childs the average age of the members of his band, and they discussed for a moment and determined that it is about 22.

As a music student and musician myself, I have come to realize that jazz is a language, and a very powerful one at that. Like a spoken language, it has vocabulary, consisting of the basic elements in which a musician can express his or her thoughts and ideas. But like any other language, it needs people to "speak" the language in order for the language itself to survive. I think that if Morgan Childs and his band are any indication, jazz is still developing new voices who will continue propelling the language forward and into new realms, depths, and heights.

In an interview with Josephine Ochej (click here), Morgan Childs discusses why he is such a strong supporter of live music:
Jazz music has always been music that has been passed down as an oral tradition. You want to play it? You have to be constantly seeking out music to learn about, and I have always believed that supporting live music should be the number one priority of musicians. Jazz has always spoken to me. The lifestyle. The hang after the gig. The unique personalities and the knowledgeable and supportive and helpful people that seem to surround the music.
Thursday, August 18, 2005
Found an article in Mmegi Online about African jazz musician/vocalist Punah Gabasiane, who hails from Botswana. From the article:
“Punah’s vocal strength has developed over the years and the release of this album marks the epitome of her vocal strength and the ability to make music that does not only appeal to jazz enthusiasts but to all music lovers. With this album, she manages to bridge the age gap and cater for all ages of music lovers,” says a statement from her publicist. Although this is her first jazz album it is not her debut release, as she previously released a gospel album. In 2000, she was voted best gospel artiste during the Botswana Music Awards.
It doesn't seem that Punah Gabasiane has a web site. If you manage to find it, please let me know!
Legendary jazz drummer Roy Haynes celebrated his 80th birthday on March 13th 2005. Newsday describes what must have been an outstanding concert in a belated celebration of his birthday at the JVC Jazz Festival-Newport, featuring such luminaries as pianist Chick Corea, tenor saxophonist Joshua Redman, bassist Christian McBride, guitarist Pat Metheny, and vibraphonist Gary Burton.

In an interview with All About Jazz from 2003 (click here), Roy Haynes talks about trains and jazz critics:
All About Jazz: Many people consider you jazz royalty - an energetic personality.

RH: I do what I do. I've been semi-retired now for the last couple of months. It can get boring, not playing. I read about myself once and it said, “When Roy walks, he walks with rhythm.” I feel like that. When I ride trains, I deal with sounds - 'chugga chugga chugga chugga'.


AAJ: What do you think some of the tasks ought to be of jazz critics? What makes a critic responsible, or irresponsible?

RH: Naturally, when a musician plays a concert or does a recording, his heart and soul - if he's for real - is in it, so when he reads critical things of what he's trying to do, it can affect him. Writers like to write like they know everything, but you can't know everything. I wouldn't want to be a critic, but sometimes when I read what they write about me, I learn more about myself, because I don't know the way it's coming over. I've been fortunate. Most of my reviews have been favorable. I couldn't speak for a lot of other artists, but it's inspiring to get a great review.
Drummerworld has lots of Roy Haynes photos, sound samples, and even a video (click here)! Check it out!
Sunday, August 14, 2005
Found a web site (CtsImages) which has details on some renowned jazz photographers including Ray Avery.
Tuesday, August 09, 2005
Avocado and Shrimp Salad

Thought I'd post a picture of an avocado and shrimp salad that I enjoyed today.
Thursday, August 04, 2005
On his web site you can listen to a full length version of saxophonist David "Fathead" Newman's signature tune, Hard Times (click here).

In an interview with the Salt Lake Tribune, David Newman comments:
Some people are intimidated by jazz. I don't like to be derogatory, but people are under the impression that it is black music. The music may have come from the African-American culture, but it is really America's music.
Jazztimes has a great "before and after" interview with David Newman (click here) where they played a jazz clip, asked David to guess who the musicians were, and he made comments on the music, before the interviewer revealed the musicians' names. The web site has all of the jazz clips in MP3 format and transcriptions of the interview segments.

Residing in upstate New York (at the time of the interview), David Newman discussed Texas, his home state, with the Vermont Review (click here for article):
VR: The music tradition is deep in Texas. It seems that music is inherent Texan trait just as much as football. Were you introduced to music at an early age?

DFN: Yes. There are a lot of influential musicians from Dallas – where I am from. Red Garland, Cedar Walton, Roy Hargrove – to name a few of the present day musicians. Some of my influences from Texas were Arnett Cobb, Illinois Jacquet and Buddy Tate.

VR: Are you Dallas Cowboys fan?

DFN: I used to be but not any more. I have a become a Jets and Giants fan. I am not into football these days because my teams have been a little disappointing. I a big basketball fan. In a basketball, I am a big Knicks fan.
Thoughts of an aspiring jazz musician and computer programmer.

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