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Anything else? Provide feedback about this page. Back to top. Get to Know Us. Amazon Music Stream millions of songs. Audible Download Audiobooks. DPReview Digital Photography. Shopbop Designer Fashion Brands. Amazon Business Service for business customers. Advanced students will be able to immediately absorb and work on many of the concepts covered in the lessons.
Beginner and intermediate level students will benefit greatly from the transcriptions of the numerous video performances with close ups when relevant. Music is like a language, and it is best learnt by surrounding yourself with better musicians. The goal of the "In The Style Series" is to give you this access, as much as possible, in the comfort of your own home! He came to prominence in the s for his Django Reinhardt-influenced style on the guitar, as well as for being a jazz fusion virtuoso on the electric guitar.
He often performs within the swing, jazz fusion and post-bop mediums. This section will discuss certain idioms and consequently devices associated with the guitar. A relatively common trait of this style involves devices used to connect and approach melodic phrases. This run is performed starting on an open string, followed by fretting the 1st, 2nd and 3rd frets consecutively. This is then repeated on the string below, until the desired note is reached. It is important to note that doing this is not strictly a chromatic scale because in order for it to work more efficiently, it is necessary to miss certain notes of the chromatic scale.
This method is much easier to use than a purely chromatic run, which requires a more cumbersome picking pattern at fast tempi. This devise involves strict alternative picking combined with rest-stroke technique. There are exceptions for this, where a full chromatic scale is used, usually when the range of the phrase is less than an octave. This minor II-V progression naturally leads into G minor, however Reinhardt prefers in this case to lead into the tonic major.
Also within the harmonic progression, the root notes between Eb9, and A-7b5 present an interval of a tritone. Similarly, the chromaticism in the melody is followed by parallel semitone chord movements within the harmonic progression: A7-Ab7-A7 This recording was produced at some point in the s, although I am unable to find an exact date for this performance. In the next chapter, I shall discuss the reinvention of style inflected by American influences of the time.
Django Reinhardt with Duke Ellington. November It is a vexed question. The awareness of our awareness the double, the second degree is our source of strength and or torment. In an interview that I undertook with Robin Nolan, he stated the importance of remaining open to modernisation and invention, and argued that Reinhardt himself was keen on this ideology:.
He was ahead of his time. This crisis in tradition is a common reoccurrence seemingly throughout the history of Gypsy Jazz, even with classical pioneers such as Baro Ferret. The s presented new ways of thinking about Jazz music, and this undoubtedly effected the way in which Gypsy Jazz was performed around the same time. However, this is not to say that there were not traditionalists. Many Gypsy Jazz musicians at least thought they remained faithful to the classical style, although this interpretation of faithfulness was often interpreted in different ways.
According to Yurochko:. It is also profoundly flawed, a gigantic torso of burstingly noisy music that absolutely refuses to resolve itself under any recognized guise. However, Gypsy Jazz remained seemingly uninfluenced by Rock inflections until artists such as Boulou and Elios Ferre followed Jazz Fusion conventions and studio techniques to enhance their music although only Boulou Ferre in the s.
Other than this there is little evidence to suggest that Gypsy Jazz instantaneously correlated with the Jazz Fusion movement.
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This is not to say that other traditional early 20th century guitar styles remained autonomous of this movement. Plectrum technique, rhythm and repertoire alone constitute evidence of conservation in Gypsy Jazz guitar style. Denis Chang states that there is:. In fact, the pioneers of the modern style have done just that, Adrien Moignard comes to mind; that is what sets them apart from the other modern players who have ignored the roots of the style. My opinion of course! Clearly its origins go back much further, and whilst I believe that Chang was acknowledging the importance of the history of the genre pre-dating Reinhardt, it is arguable that too much concentration on the past is an overly reverent and conservative view point, especially considering that modernisation was at the heart of the inception of the Quintette du Hot Club de France.
I will now look into particular recordings of the s, demonstrating this crisis of tradition. Although he never recorded commercially until the late s there is video evidence of Babik experimenting with a MIDI guitar and electronic backing tracks. The move towards electronic instruments undoubtedly raised questions of authenticity, not only in Gypsy Jazz music but other jazz genres.
This development of music technology proves to be a key factor for these crises in tradition throughout history. Throughout history, new instruments and instrument components drawing upon technical possibilities of the day have often incited debates as to their legitimacy and place within musical culture. The arrival of the pianoforte into a culture that revered the harpsichord was for some an unwarranted intrusion by a mechanical device.
What Pinch and Bijsterveld argue here is that newer technologies will always bring about a crisis in tradition and even if at first seemingly controversial, it is perhaps an element of the evolutionary nature of music.
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Despite their often-radical negligence towards certain classical features mentioned within the first chapter, they are still firmly bracketed under the Gypsy Jazz label. Whether this is due to their inherent relation to Baro Ferret and Gypsy ethnicity, or musical character is debatable. Here I shall outline features of musical examples of the s and s: whereby Boulou and Elios Ferre arguably step back to more classically inspired works.
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The musicality itself is far from Swing-influenced, Gypsy Jazz music presented by Reinhardt. I am even unsure as to whether traditional rest-stroke picking was used, as the guitars tone is often effected and characteristic of American Jazz Fusion guitarists. On a similar note, Boulou Ferre deliberately employs a distorted guitar tone.
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Although this was not specifically intentional, the distortion that can be heard here was the nature of pushing a valve-powered amplifier to a high volume, resulting in a lack of tonal clarity. This distortion can be heard throughout, but most noticeably from why Reinhardt forcefully plays in octaves. It can also be heard when forceful chords with tremolo are deployed from The introduction of the Long Play record by Columbia was another key factor for musical reinvention. The fact that musicians in the s were presented with the ability to record more music per side of disc was detrimental to music production of the time.
The introduction of the LP was undoubtedly an enabling factor to the modernization of Rock and Jazz Fusion. However, I would argue that the music in this case is not trying to be, or fit into the label of Gypsy Jazz. Indeed, the band name itself suggests an evolution or transformative process moving away from previous incarnations.
It is explicitly a Jazz Fusion recording, incorporating instrumentation used in Rock music of the s. This evidence suggests that the only defining feature of Gypsy Jazz is the performer, Boulou Ferre, himself. This is much the same way in which Babik Reinhardt takes a musical step away from the Classical Gypsy Jazz style.
In which case, it is not musical style, but ethnicity and relation to the classical masters that places them firmly within the Gypsy Jazz label. I shall talk more in depth about this conflicting debate between musical style and ethnicity in my third chapter. It seems that their version of the piece utilizes a softer rhythm, with an often less abrasive timbre with grace-notes at This performance is more representative of Modern Jazz than of a Gypsy Waltz, and is characterized by a freer interpretation of classical Gypsy Waltz rhythm, heard at This is one of the rare cases where the rhythm guitar begins by arpeggiating the chords as opposed to playing La Pompe.
The opening head section is almost entirely performed this way, resulting in a very modernistic take on the original composition. Their arrangement draws attention to accents in the music with more dynamic contrast creating a modernistic approach to this performance These more aggressive statements give a fresh interpretation to the music that was previously written with more leniencies in tempo, and a generally more free and novel approach to lead performance. This style echoes the concept of this album, namely, as the album title suggests, a surreal or dream-like impression of classical Gypsy Jazz.
Although a more recent recording from Boulou Ferre, this is deliberately a conscious move back to the style of Reinhardt. This recording and album, although sharing musical similarities to the modern American Jazz music of the time, is perhaps a step back to a more classically inspired work.
I would argue this is due to a returning focus on the acoustic guitar as key instrumentation. Consequently, the idioms of Gypsy Jazz guitar, such as rest-stroke picking, and musical devices i. This is unusual for classical Gypsy Jazz recordings, which are generally left untouched by studio effects. These studio enhancements are generally uncommon, and debatably a radical movement away from the musical style of Reinhardt in that they constitute an attempt to embrace the American Fusion movement using electronics as instruments.
Boulou and Elios Ferre have therefore explicitly stated that this album was recorded as a live performance, even though there are certain elements of studio enhancement. The tempo varies with a gradual accelerando building from to Rhytm Futur was originally composed by Reinhardt, and was originally through-composed, intentionally not leaving space for improvised instrumental solos.
Their music was arguably an innovation from certain classical aspects of the music, including an entire negligence of the standardised La Pompe throughout the recording. This can be heard on Track Despite much of the Gypsy Jazz repertoire originating from American Swing music, Gypsy Jazz focuses predominantly on the guitar. Whereas American Swing music utilizes guitar as a predominantly rhythm based instrument, this of course has exceptions as mentioned earlier , Gypsy Jazz has predominantly string based arrangements.
One very recent recording could be described a prime example of this musical evolution: La Fuente ft. This can be heard most clearly from , although the harmony remains static throughout. Therefore, there is nothing obviously in common musically with the classical style of Gypsy Jazz other than the inclusion of a Gypsy Jazz trio i. However, what this effectively demonstrates is the widespread influence of Gypsy Jazz beyond that associated directly with American Jazz music.
This proves to be the case in the s also, where Rock music could be considered as just as much of an influence on Gypsy Jazz musicians i.