Get the best from guitar playing lessons only at learnguitar
“Gone are the times when someone who wanted to learn the guitar had to adjust their schedule and travel to a class. Today the internet has taken over as the most reliable source of learning guitar from the comforts of one’s home. The lessons start with the basics of playing guitar and one can gradually start at their own pace with these lessons. The basic lessons include a step by step guide on different chords, holding the guitar, strings, etc. The lessons then gradually continue with the advanced techniques of playing the guitar in all levels and styles.
One can learn to play either an acoustic guitar or electric guitar or both techniques of playing either style is slightly different. Lernguitar.net can help one master both the techniques. In a space of just two weeks one can start playing the guitar confidently in front of a small family gathering or even a party. One can even imitate the style of their favorite guitar players by learning from the internets top instructors such as Sonya Perricone, Rick Napolitano and Don Lappin. The site contains hundreds of compositions from the world’s best guitar artists.
All the lessons are placed in a continuous flow so that you don’t get lost in the mix. The site is unlike any other free guitar lessons site where guitar lessons are just posted without caring about the order. The site also shares the secrets of the Pro’s which have made them what they are today. One can follow in their footsteps and become a professional guitar playing artist himself by learning through learnguitar.
Next on the list of imparting lessons is learning the tricks of mastering the different scales on the guitar. Mastering scales requires a lot of practice but Learnguitar makes it easy and enjoyable. The best part of the site is that it encourages the learner to try out the different styles with a lot of confidence. One can master more than one style and be good at both of them. Apart from mastering scales, the site also teaches you how to become perfect at playing chords and rhythm. The best part of playing any musical instrument is that if one plays it in the correct manner one gets a lot of confidence and motivation to continue the learning process and this is the sole purpose of Learnguitar.
Apart from techniques one can also concentrate on a particular style of playing the guitar like Jazz, Metal, Country,Funk, Blues and Rock. All the lessons are in the form of easy to read printouts and videos. Learnguitar guarantees that even a beginner who does not know the ABC’s of guitar playing will become a pro if they seriously spend time with the video guitar lessons and practices playing the guitar regularly. “
Trying to pin down the key differences between ragtime and jazz music can be a confusing process. The two genres are very similar, and many scholars trace the roots of jazz back to ragtime music. A few key differences do exist between these two genres, however, and these were outlined by Ortiz Walton in 1972 as part of his text, “Music: Black, White and Blue.”
Solo vs. Ensemble
- Traditionally, ragtime music is played by a single piano. Although many ragtime players do use other instruments, most notably the banjo or the guitar, the music is generally thought of as being played by the piano. Jazz, on the other hand, is almost always played by a group of musicians on instruments like the piano, trumpet and trombone. It’s possible to find pieces that stray from this instrumentation, but they generally hold true as a difference between the two genres.
Replication vs. Improvisation
- Jazz depends heavily on improvisation. The only fixed version of many jazz songs is the particular version that has been recorded. Finding transcriptions of jazz records can be difficult, and many musicians have to learn new songs by listening to other musicians perform them. With the improvisational spirit prevalent in jazz, learning each individual note played by the original performer isn’t that important. Ragtime music, on the other hand, is often written down, and the songs are more musically structured than jazz.
Homophony vs. Polyphony
- Jazz music is heavily textured musically. The multiple instruments often play their own section and this provides an overall richness and depth to the sound. This is one way in which jazz can be similar to ragtime, because both use syncopation, but ragtime music is strictly homophonic. This means there is one musical voice, while polyphonic means there are multiple. Syncopation, a common factor in ragtime and jazz, means that the music changes so that the previously weaker beat is accentuated.
Saloons vs. Weddings
- The setting in which ragtime and jazz are played is the final key difference between the two genres. Ragtime music is more dance-oriented and was generally used as background music in locations such as saloons or homes. Jazz music wasn’t limited to such informal scenarios, and was often played at functions such as weddings, balls, funerals and parades.
Lolita du Gaul
Love comes and goes; obsessions are forever…
-Vic Dillinger, The Black Orchid
I am not madly in love with the country of France, not after what they did to Jeanne d’Arc (I can hold a grudge for a mighty long time).
However, there are some French things I like: escargot, Brigitte Bardot, and Jerry Lewis, to name a few.
French literature and French art are almost unparalleled. In the realm of popular music, however, France hasn’t given us much. They can’t seem to put together a killerrock band, for example. I think the French language itself is the barrier – that nasal, choking-on-your-own-tongue ululation and whining that passes for speech makes life difficult for any rocker trying to have any street cred toward badassery.
I mean, can you imagine how lame Metallica’s “Enter Sandman”
would sound if sung by some French guy? It can’t be done. Similarly, imagine if some version of a French Crip (a “Crêpe”?) threatened you with, “Don’ make meeee cut vous wiz zeesbaguette!” You’d be shaking in your Italian leather loafers, for sure, and you’d have to get on your Vespa and putt-putt outta there toot sweet, eh?
There is one area of pop music where the French have been successful, despite the “I-need-the-Heimlich-maneuver” vocal strangling of the lingua franca. This is in the area of thechanteuse, the nymphet vocalist, all wide-eyed innocence and allure. Among that group of teen queens, one reigns supreme. Her dominance of the girly, bubble-gummy French pop music genre of the early to mid 1960s is why I am madly in love with France Gall.
This bébé filles was born October 9, 1947, with a much longer handle: Isabelle Geneviève Marie Anne Gall. She was the only girl of three siblings. Music was in the family. Her grandfather had helped found a French national children’s choir. Her father, a popular French music hall and jazz musician, was very successful. He was also a highly respected songwriter, and had written hits for some of France’s better-known crooners (you wouldn’t know any of ’em, so I won’t waste your time naming them). Her mother, Cécile, was a singer. Isabelle learned piano and picked up a guitar as a child. In her early teens, she and her two brothers formed a vocal trio.
Not surprisingly, when the young Isabelle displayed early vocal talents, her father encouraged her singing. What is surprising, though, is he also later encouraged her to drop out of school to pursue a singing career (the French, perhaps, aren’t well-known for their parenting skills).
Isabelle Gall adopted the new moniker “France Gall”. With her dad’s connections in the French music biz she was able to book some studio time and record her first single in 1963 when she was fifteen years old. The song she cut, “Ne sois pas si bête“, is an interesting amalgam of jazzy horns, with a driving back beat. Her delivery is staccato, almost machine-gunning lyrics in bursts. It is an extraordinary piece of early 1960s French pop music, and unlike anything played on American radio in the same period, although it is evocative of early 1960s’ Anglo rock.
I don’t parlay vous Frenchie (well, just enough to be dangerous: “meh”, “merci bleu-bleh“, “zizzle voswah”, and “stinky cheese”). France Gall’s first single’s title translates into “Don’t Be So Stupid/So Silly/Such a ‘Tard” dependent upon context. Even though I barely comprende I get the tone. This tune was an instant hit, and sold an impressive 200,000 copies out of the gate in 1963. At 2:17 long, it is a short burst of fun, even though I understand almost nothing of what she sings.
France Gall was part of a pop music genre in France known asyé-yé (“yeah-yeah”). The yé-yé bunch were mostly teen girls who sang vacuous material aimed at a naïve European teen audience. The style incorporated elements of Anglo pop music with homegrown French twists. It is a strange combination, and it is also infectious.
The novice France Gall differed from this lot of prefab sprouts for a couple of reasons. One, she had talent as a vocalist. Secondly, she did not restrict herself to covers of American or British hit singles as most of her peers did. Instead, she recorded songs written specifically for her or songs that writers were shopping around. Thus, in an era of cover girls, France was building an oeuvre of originals.
France left school in the wake of her first hit. Her second outing in 1964 proved she was more than a typical yé-yé. The child-like quality of “Sacré Charlemagne“, written by her old man Robert and another guy, was also a hit even though it qualifies more as a children’s song and not merely “child-like”. [Children’s songs would be a format she would revisit over the course of her career]. This song went on to sell over 2 million copies.
Her big career break came almost immediately after “Sacré Charlemagne“. A music insider introduced her to a songwriter/producer named Serge Gainsbourg. Gainsbourg was the stereotypical image most Americans have of Frenchmen: greasy, smarmy looking, of questionable hygeine (dumping cologne over the stank instead of taking a shower), almost predatory in his demeanor. Yet, he was a gifted songwriter, knew a good hook when he heard one, and the combination of his tunes and France’s voice made her successful outside her homeland.
Gainsbourg wrote “N’écoute pas les idoles” (“Don’t listen to the idols”). This was a hit for France Gall, and in March 1964 this tune topped the French pop charts and remained there for three weeks. The song is excellent; it is underpinned with a churning, noodling bass line, and her vocals keen and rise in places (although, again, I don’t have a clue what she is saying, and I don’t care).
In a true indicator of social norms (European blasé versus American puckered conservatism) the televised “performance” of this song occurs on a stage set featuring a bed. A male is reclining on the bed listening to records – France walks over and sits on the foot of the bed while he is on it!! That would’ve been just too awful and scarring to see on TV in America. Not in the Magic Land of Gaul, though, in 1964.
For those not in tune with what the rest of the world does musically, there is an annual contest for pop music that is decades old (started in the 1950s) called Eurovision. It is a showcase for artists of different countries to submit material and then get a chance to do it before an international panel of judges (sort of like a relevant version of American Idol). Some past winners of this contest are ABBA (of Sweden), Sir Cliff Richard (of Britain), Lulu (of “To Sir, With Love” fame), Celine Dion (in 1988), and Katrina and the Waves (in 1997). In any event, this competition can be a major springboard for a budding artist.
France’s success with Gainsbourg’s songs brought her a string of follow-up hits in the wake of what I call “The Idol Song”. She drew nearby international attention, and although France Gall is a French native, she was entered as a contestant in 1965’s Eurovision competition representing Luxembourg.
Serge Gainsbourg gave her ten songs from which to choose one to sing at the competition. She selected a song of his called “Poupée de cire, poupée de son“. [I called this “The Poopie Song” until I learned “poupée” meant “puppet” and not “feces”. So, I’ll call it “The Puppet Song”.]
This tune has a galloping, spaghetti-Western feel to it, sort of like some of Ennio Morricone’s instrumentals. It’s a soaring up-tempo piece, well orchestrated, and France sang it on March 20, 1965, for Eurovision’s judges. She won the competition with that song. She later recorded this tune in German, Italian, and Japanese!
After her win at Eurovision she spent the summer of 1965 touring her country with “Le Grand Cirque de France” (“The Great Circus of France”). This road show was a great public relations vehicle for her, and was a combination radio broadcast and live circus. She continued to hit the charts with Gainsbourg’s songs. She also took a campy stab at American-style Country & Western in a non-Gainsbourg song called “L’Amérique” (“America”). About halfway through the song she does a bit of hillbilly twanging over light banjo work. In her native language it is charming and unintentionally funny.
Gainsbourg, though, was France Gall’s Svengali, and he put words in her mouth through his songs she would not have willingly sung if she had understood their subtext.
Eurovision’s “Puppet Song” was a good example. She sang about being a puppet in the sense of having no control of her emotions sometimes; Gainsbourg’s take on it is she washis puppet to do with as he pleases.
Her next song by Gainsbourg was called “Baby Pop”. He followed that up, though, with some genuine sleaze. He wrote a tune called “Les Sucettes“. [I will call this “The Sucker Song” for obvious reasons; you’ll see]. The song on its surface is about a girl’s love for lollipops. However, buried in the double-entendre of the lyrics are clearly intended references to fellatio. Gainsbourg thought it was hilarious for this girl (who was 18 at the time she recorded it) to be singing innocently about oral sex.
France Gall, while not the first, was one of the first French
video vixens. Little films (that would later be known as “music videos”) were made of her lip-synching her songs, with jumpy camera effects and Carnaby Street-mod still shots integrated into the live action. It is these little filmed interpretations of her songs that made me fall madly in love with her. France Gall has a visual appeal as well as aural.
Most of these pieces are straightforward performance films. Some interpret the songs with narratives. Others are just pastiches to something or another unknown to Americans. For her video of “The Sucker Song” the legal-aged Lolita is dolled up in her mod mini-dress and pea coat, her blond hair parted on the side held back with a barrette, and she is wearing black patent leather shoes. She is adorable, and although she is 18, she looks about 14.
Gainsbourg used this Lolita image to great effect in the shoot. In the full version of the song’s video, it is Gainsbourg seen sitting in the prelude, all smarmy and oily, with his missing upper right incisor, smoking a cigarette, his gold wedding band plainly visible as he ogles the nubile France Gall.
For her part, she couldn’t have been either cuteror more naïve. She emotes as if licking lollipops was the most earnest topic ever. She smiles prettily throughout, she rolls her eyes adoringly, and on a cuteness scale of one to ten, she is an eleven (only baby polar bears are cuter than this).
There was an uproar over this tune when it was released. Although France Gall didn’t get the innuendo the rest of her listening public pretty much did. She only found out much later (after several more collaborations with Gainsbourg) what the song’s lyrics really meant.
When she did learn of the controversy, she felt betrayed by him. It severed their partnership, and she refused to sing the song for years to come. [She later reported that during a Japanese TV appearance in 1966 she hadn’t understood why there were so many men hanging around on the set – it was unusual. But after she found out what the song was about, she realized they were all there for the titillation factor, and she was rightfully embarrassed.]
“The Sucker Song” was a huge hit, though, but it did make a stink for France and Gainsbourg both. He was lambasted for putting such filth in her mouth, and she was of course guilty by association. She cut all ties with Gainsbourg and recorded in Germany and other parts of Europe for a time while the controversy cooled down.
Her career never really recovered. She charted with a Gainsbourg tune “Bébé requin” (“Baby Shark”) in 1967. Later, when she no longer had any association with Gainsbourg she still suffered. Her other LPs and singles in the late 1960s failed to chart. One of these songs was “Bonsoir John John”, an homage to slain US President John F. Kennedy. It’s a solid tune, every bit as sincere as Dion’s “Abraham, Martin & John” from the same period, and it is treated well as a ballad by France.
Although co-written by Gilles Thibaut (one of the writers of the French song that Paul Anka would turn into the iconic “My Way”) she couldn’t get away from the sting of public aspersions left over from “The Sucker Song”. The public actually began suspiciously going back into her catalog and looking for similar innuendoes in herchildren’s recordings from the same year as “The Sucker Song” (there aren’t any).
She was chum to the shark press by then, so she moved along to record in other countries.
France performed and recorded mostly in Germany from 1966 through 1972. She was successful among the German people, and scored with many hit singles. By 1968 when her contract with the French Philips Records expired, she moved on completely to a different record company and dropped her management as well. She recorded several unnoticed singles for her new label before it went bankrupt in 1969.
The early 1970s were bleak. In 1971, she became the first artist to be recorded in France for Atlantic Records. Her two 1971 singles failed, and in 1972 she broke down and recorded two songs by Gainsbourg, hoping to recapture some of the glory of just a few years before. These songs, too, failed to chart.
France was floundering musically when she met popular French jazz musician Michel Berger. She was making money from her live performances and from royalties on her earlier recordings but by her early 20s she was at an impasse. She had become enchanted by a song in 1973 written and performed by Berger.
In 1978 Berger convinced France to act in an all-female revue (orchestra, choir, dance troupe) called Made in France (there was only one non-female performer, a guy in drag). Berger co-wrote a rock opera called Starmania in 1979 that featured France as the star. It ran for a month with France starring, then took off on its own with different casts and toured popularly afterward.
France Gall had her own fashion sense. In the Sixties her preferred look centered around the mod’s style of dress. Fortunately, she never adopted the goofy, crappy,
hippie look of the times. She always looked put together, and in a photo of her in 1971 (taken when she was 24, but looking as if she is 16) she wears gear that fits better in 1979 than in 1971. By 1980, France had assumed a tough girl look, and for a French duet she did with Elton John that year (“Donner pour donner“), she looks like a veteran of The Runaways: tousled hair, tee-shirt, jeans, and a riot grrrl look on her face.
Family life, of course, would interfere with recording. In November 1978, France gave birth to a daughter named Pauline. She gave birth to a boy, Raphaël, in April 1981. Still, France toured and recorded around these domestic interruptions.
references of African influence, and it is perhaps one of the earliest “world music” records one can define as such. It is also interesting to note how much France matured as an artist on this record. The influences of Africa and the subject matter are not only of their time but slightly ahead. The title track, “Babacar”, is a good example of World Music in its infancy.
The Berger-Gall family wealth allowed them to travel extensively and to buy homes and properties in other countries. France regularly visited Senegal, and she became active in global humanitarian charities and causes. One of her biggest had to do with the famine situation in Africa. In response to Britain’s “Band-Aid” and America’s “USA for Africa” charities, the French music community created a similar philanthropic group to cut and promote a single for African relief. France and her husband Michel were instrumental in this project.
She toured her native France extensively in the late 1980s, and on the heels of that tour released a successful, live double-LP in 1988. In 1990, she and her husband bought a retreat on an island near Dakar.
In early 1992, she released another “comeback” album called Double Jeu from which she had two hit singles. In July 1992, she and Michel Berger were vacationing in one of their homes near St. Tropez, when he suddenly died of a heart attack. He was 44 years old. France was obviously devastated (in a documentary about her, she said of Berger, reminiscing about meeting him, “It will be him, or else it will be nobody”). To make matters worse, in 1993, France was diagnosed with breast cancer. Through aggressive treatment she became a breast cancer survivor.
France made many comebacks (she was never really “gone”, just spotty in her activities musically), and once recovered from her bout with breast cancer she returned to live performing and recording. In 1996, she recorded a new full-length disc called France. From this she culled a “true” music video directed by Jean-Luc Godard (the French “New Wave” director of 1960’s Breathless fame). The video was recorded near his Swiss home.
Her artistic life seemed to be filled with fits and starts and, seemingly, when she was building momentum something always went wrong to quell it. Sadly, this time it was more death. Her first-born, the daughter named Pauline, suffered from cystic fibrosis. In December 1997, Pauline (age 19) died of complications from the disease. France had “retired” from music by that time after completing an “unplugged” show for French television earlier in the year. She went into seclusion in Senegal. Since then her public appearances have been rare, although she did emerge in 2001 to contribute to a documentary about her. She also appeared on stage for the first time in years in 2007 to perform live on a tribute show commemorating the 15th anniversary of her husband’s death.
France spends more time on her charitable works than anything else. She spearheads many projects, but her patronage is solidly behind a group called Coeurs de Femmes that sponsors and supports homeless and abused women.
France Gall left a major cult figure behind in France Gall. Her songs from her earliest days are interesting little moments of what the French thought of as a type of rock ‘n’ roll. It is a fascinating music in many ways, and although France Gall is not the only successful yé-yé she perhaps is held in greater esteem than most.
This girl-woman/woman-girl is fascinating visually. When she did the video for her first single (the one about being stupid) she looks as if she is 25 years old, very mature looking in her dress and subdued make-up. Later, as she got older, she seemed to revert – pictures of her up until her early thirties show a woman much younger in appearance than her age.
Her music has a sort of timeless quality to it, and these retro tunes are listenable today without sounding so hokey or dated that you just can’t stand it. April March, the American singer who in 1995 released the great single “Chick Habit”, owes a debt to France Gall, and she will admit it. April discovered France Gall when she was an exchange student in France in her youth. She then became hooked on the yé-yé music. [Which, unfortunately, is too easily done – I’m serious. These tunes attach themselves to your brainstem like a parasitic extraterrestrial, leaving you bewitched, bothered, and totally stupefied as to “Why? Why?”]
The song “Chick Habit” as recorded in English by April is a musically faithful version of France Gall’s “Laisse tomber les filles” (“Never Mind the Girls” or something along those lines). In English, April had written new lyrics. She does cover the French version of the lyrics as sung by Gall, and here’s where it gets kind of cool.
Digging around on YouTube (and I sincerely recommend this) you can find both of April March’s versions of this outstanding song (April’s English-lyric version plays over the end credits of the killer movie Grindhouse).
However, you can also find a video clip from 1964 of France Gall doing her version as written by Gainsbourg in 1963. This video is astounding: she is very charismatic, sing-songy in her delivery, smiling, pretty, and just singing her song without being a skeezer about it (the way Britney Spears and her ilk would have done).
The film set is a school room as a nod to France’s youth, but she’s totally in control of the action, ignoring a guy, sticking her finger in his face in admonishment. In short, France Gall’s original is better than April March’s remake. The music vamps a little better, the horns on the hooks are less jarring and more slinky, and it’s just a great record.
And whatta doll she is! She has a natural look with a wonderful little beauty mark beneath her right eye that in later photos I’m afraid she either had removed or airbrushed out.
France’s material is being rediscovered, and newer audiences are catching up with her early singles. Compilations exist as inexpensive primers of yé-yé, but France actually sang in many idioms, including jazz. One of her earliest songs has her scatting on a jazzy tune in her French twang, and it is a moment of greatness.
Why am I madly in love with France Gall? Easy: I love the gems, the undiscovered. But, once recovered, they bring something extra to your life. This woman-girl does it for me.
So…just who are you? That is a question that every solo artist, solo musician, and every solo instrumentalist has probably asked themselves down through the years. The ones who can answer that question will find themselves on the road to a very eventful, and interesting musical career.
Who am I?…Who do I want to be?…Who do I sound like?…Who would I want to be like? These are all legitimate questions, and ones that should be asked. Every one has strengths, and weaknesses. We all have our differences. We all have different goals, and the way we want to achieve them.
To find ones self as a person is a great achievement. To find ones self as a person, and a great soloist is a great Blessing. To find ones self as a person…as a great soloist…and to want to share that with the rest of the world is a most honored desire.
It’s not a fact of being proud. No, it’s not a fact of being better than any, and everyone else. It’s not the fact of being able to do more than anyone else, or being in a class of “It’s me, and there’s no one else”. No…it’s not about any of these things.
Rather, it is knowing that you have something to offer. Knowing that you have something that may help someone. Knowing that it is not only a blessing that you are you, and you know that you are you. But,…knowing that you are blessed so that you may be a blessing to all of the rest of the world.
So…just who are you? how will you perfect your talent? What will you do with your talent? Will you use it to wage war? Or,…will you use it to make peace? Will you think of the fact that any one of your performances just may save a persons life? Or, will you give a darn, and only think you are IT…and there is no reason for you to care?
Finding ones self is not an easy thing. No, it’s not easy at all. It takes a lot of heart, and a lot of grit. It takes a lot of commitment, a lot of patience and endurance. It takes giving ones self completely over to the tools, and ways of perfection. You will have to go through the refining fire. Hours upon hours of epetitiveness, and drudgery. You will need the focus of a microscope. You must have the intense burning desire of a perfectionist.
The mountain in front of you must be just another movable object, and the wide valley just another attainable space. The goal here is to be that great soloist,…that great musician,…that great artist,…that great instrumentalist,…That great vocalist. The goal is to find that person inside of you. The goal is to find, and perfect that talent you have been blessed with. To search your innermost being,…to probe deep in your bowels,…to travel the deep relmes of the mind. To find that spark and turn it into a super nova! To reach beyond the pain,…beyond the wall,… to go beyond perfection. To reach the point where your music is that exact mirror of your soul.
The only lasting way to attain this level that I know of is,…Practice!Practice!Practice!, and Practice some more! If you can see the end result that is possible, if you could just taste the sweetness of what it is like to move the hearts of thousands,…if you could know what it is like to pour music out of your deepest parts until tears uncontrolably flow,…If you could only feel what it must be like to perform for the Creator Himself! To capture the power of the elements,…to hold the secrets of the universe.
Jazz Music Today
Jazz music has evolved to the point where basic signature of the style has minimized into an influential element. For example, the Jazz music of the 80’s electronica music of IDM which stand for Intelligent Dance Music where such artists like Bjourk is known for. The drum and bass is another form of electronica that does not use the typical improvisation that is one of the key elements of Jazz music. In fact, this is not thought of as Jazz music at all, but a style that was influenced by Jazz music.
Musicians of the electronica age were St. Germain, Jazzanova, Portishead, Apex Twin and more who used live Jazzmusic to beats. The Cinematic Orchestra and Julien Lourau from Europe’s France were very successful with this style of music. However, those musicians who master keeping the traditional Jazz music combined with new elements are the most loyal to the style from which it came. In the millennium, Jazz elements became a part of the American Pop scene with the artist Norah Jones, and Christina Aguilera, Amy Winehouse.
There are skeptics who do not believe the music should be called Jazz. However, Christina Aguilera’s Back To Basics album used Jazz brass instruments with urban beats. Jazz music according to the National Public Radio filed a report stating that the music is becoming more popular with the public regarding the interest of the buyers of jazzmusic.
Rhythm and Blues music is a product of Jazz music that describes funk and soul. The musicians who successfully made their mark with this sound of jazz, boogie-woogie gospel, bebop and blues reinvented R&B into contemporary styles. Artist such as Robert Palmers, Jerry Lee Lewis, Fats Domino, Prince, Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Janet Jackson, Keith Sweat, Mariah Carey, En Vogue, Guy, Jodeci, Mary J. Blige, Levert, Teddy Riley, Justin Timberlake, Aaliyah, Missy Elliot, Lauren Hill, Brian McKnight, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis are a few of the many people who’ve made this music popular. Later on Pop artist like Pink, Britney Spears and Gwen Stephani used R&B musical elements in their songs. The wheel of the evolvement of Jazz music keeps turning into new styles, yet turns back at different times toward the root where it began.
Those who were in favor of the traditional Jazz music feared that the essence of Jazz music would be lost among all the new innovations. Free thinking in the world of Jazz caused a division between the modernist and traditionalist. The world of Jazz music has changed to the point where Jazz once the leader turned into an element included in today’s works of art. Nevertheless, nothing in the traditional Jazz music has changed, but the radios have extended their repertoire to include all the styles of music with jazz elements.
The array of Jazz music is present in the Jazz fests who played music with African elements that did not sound likeJazz music. One thing we all should look out for is the musical elements in Jazz that stand out such as the complex rhythm, and the chromatic chordal harmony or chord progressions typical for the Jazz Music.
Hello From Toronto – Free Music, Great Food And Street Life At Toronto’s Taste Of Little Italy
Festival season is in full swing. Summer is a great time to be in Toronto since there are multiple events going on at the same time. I had just heard about the “Taste of Little Italy” street festival and decided to partake of a little free-admission Italo-style celebration.
When I got there yesterday at about noon the restaurants and bands were still setting up. Streets were closed all the way from Euclid to Shaw and everyone was working feverishly to prepare for the 3rd and final day of this year’s Taste of Little Italy. All the major bars and restaurants had big screen TVs to beam the live Brazil-Australia World Cup match to a crowd of avid soccer fans.
At the heart of Little Italy is the CHIN Building, headquarters of Toronto’s first multicultural / multilingual radio station, founded by famous Italian-Canadian entrepreneur and community leader Johnny Lombardi. CHIN broadcasts in more than 30 languages in Toronto, in more than 18 languages in Ottawa/Gatineau and is available via satellite all across North America.
Little Italy is one of Toronto’s most popular entertainment areas with a great variety of Italian restaurants, trattorias, bars and cafés. Other cultures have also made culinary inroads and you’ll find Japanese, Mexican, Peruvian and Portuguese eateries as well.
Since the festival wasn’t quite off the ground yet I decided to treat myself to a little lunch and chose a nice window seat at “El Bodegon”, one of Toronto’s foremost Latin restaurants. Although the menu is dominated by meat and seafood, I opted for a light meal, combining a savoury avocado salad with fried plantains, one of my favourite vegetables. I had a perfect view from my little table by the window and caught a glimpse of two celebrities making a brief appearance: Jack Layton, federal NDP leader, and Olivia Chow, now a federal Member of Parliament. Toronto’s foremost political power couple, made an appearance on their bikes at the street festival.
At about 1:30 pm the music started to get going and right across from my lunch spot a two-man band started to play Latin rhythms and flamenco. After a very satisfying mid-day meal I started strolling through the area and chatted with a few of the bands. One of the music groups, Los Imbakayunas, is from Peru and tours all throughout Eastern Canada during the summer months and plays at various street festivals and special events. The hot Peruvian rhythms and melodic sounds of the pan flute were enchanting the crowds and hips were started to gently sway. Even a woman in an electric wheelchair started to dance exuberantly to the music.
I talked to a gentleman from the Coro Folcloristico Italia di Toronto who informed me that his group has been singing for more than 15 years and their repertoire includes the whole gamut of Italian folk songs, from the north to the south. I also had a brief chat with Pablo Terry, bandleader and flute player of Sol de Cuba who has been brightening up the Toronto music scene for the last 11 years.
Across the street was another band playing Latin Jazz, followed by a group playing contemporary Italian music. A few steps down from Terry was the Jeanine Mackie Band who got the street cooking with their funk, blues and R&B tunes. Further east another Italian choir, the Coro Abruzzo, was setting up for its performance.
A street festival always attracts interesting people. An older gentleman on a bike decorated with a tiger tail, a green plastic superhero adorning the handlebar and a tyrannosaurus rex made an appearance. Of course I had to talk to him. He said his name was Mickey, he’s retired now and he figured decorating his bike would be something to do in his retirement. From dressed-up dogs to dogs in baskets on bikes, everyone seemed to have a lot of fun.
Various entertainment areas were set up for children: young ones were running back and forth inside a very large inflatable train, a soccer challenge was set up and at “Hoop It Up” people could test their basketball skills. Various games of chance were enticing the crowd to try their luck.
Low-cost shiatsu massages were available and henna tattoos could also be obtained. Many of the local stores participated in the festival by providing special sale-priced items on the street.
The Nicorette girls, dressed in devilish red dresses, adorned with diabolic tails, were handing out free stop-smoking chewing gum, trying to entice the smokers to give up their filthy habit.
More freebies were to be had in the form of “clodhoppers”, a truly delicious concoction of fudge and graham wafer crackers. I have to admit I walked by the Clodhoppers truck four times just to scrounge up another free sample of these delicious sweet treats. Another bunch of people were handing out free taste bags of Doritos, containing the new Jalapeno flavour. Later on I bought a pop at Kalendar Koffee House and was promptly given a free hot Nutella sandwich. The generosity was appreciated.
Freebies were available everywhere, free music and very reasonably priced food samples (costing between $1 and $5) made for a great low-cost outing on a hot June weekend.
Learning to Play the Piano Online: Pros and Cons
Playing the piano without having someone to teach you can be difficult. It is like gambling your time and effort based on your own knowledge and understanding. To learn the piano online can have its ups and downs. So decide if you’re really up to the test of playing without the thought of giving up.
Whenever you go to a web page that offers a lot of promises with their online lessons, they do not tell you the downs of learning it without having someone who could tell you if you’re doing it the right way.
In this article, the advantages and disadvantages of playing a piano is discussed.
• The Internet is flooded with millions of searches about learning the piano online. There are those for beginners and for those who want further instruction not found in any manual whatsoever.
• This is totally free. Not unless if you become enticed with the offline CDs and visuals that the website also offers.
• It is more updated than the books and manuals that are bought outside.
• Those who made the websites are freelance musicians that are willing to share their knowledge, facts, ideals and secrets to learn piano the easiest way possible.
• It is filled with so much details and songs you can choose from. Wide array of songs to include in your list.
• It can also help you choose if you want to play jazz, rock, funk, classic, metal and many more.
• You are entitled to rewind every step that you didn’t decipher.
• Every rhythm and pattern is taught thoroughly to help the students understand each line. A lot of online lessons let you read notes and chords at a stage so advanced and at the same time enjoy the directory of entries and resources.
• Aside from the advanced lessons, there are also at least a hundred thousand tricks, patterns and fills. The internet enables online libraries filled with resources that are readily available to those who need it. Furthermore, if you’re kind of slow, chords, grooves and scales can be recapped with the help of their glossary.
• It offers wide range recordings that are also intended for those who can’t read music.
• Easy ways to practice and tackle even the hardest patterns, scales and chords can now be achieved at the touch of your fingertips.
• You also get the chance to choose from top instrument shops because these sites include their cheap yet of best quality. They could show you where and how much you can get from these stores.
• You could play and learn anytime you want, whenever you’re available. Your time is all yours.
• Nothing compares with the real thing. Playing online is like a lifeless form of learning. It doesn’t incur pure satisfaction.
• Questions can’t be answered at a prompt. There are doubts that would fill your mind every once in a while. And to send some questions through the net would require waiting and this will take days.
• No one will see your mistakes and tell you that what you’re doing is wrong. And the thing about that is you can never right your wrongs without anyone telling you.
Dance music is music that is created to be associated with dancing. It encompasses many different styles of music, from waltz, tango, to country music, among others. Dance music also carries the name of the dance that is associated with it. For instance, there’s the cha-cha-cha, merengue, and breakdown. This genre experienced quite an evolutionover the years. In the late 1970s, dance music gave birth to other genres that would later dominate both the airwaves and nightclubs.
Now, dance music is more commonly known as electronic music, techno, trance, and house. Electronic dance music was made popular in the early 80s. It utilizes electronics to produce a new style of dance music and it is often played in nightclubs. This style has flourished even more when personal computers became indispensable. From the popular club scenes in London, it has quickly spread to Ibiza, the capital of electronic music in Europe.
In as early as the 1920s, dance music was already a popular music genre. People went to clubs and danced to jazz tunes. Jazz is a kind of dance music that is produced by string instruments and intricate arrangements. It became a staple music in clubs, although today, this kind of music is referred to as white jazz. The 1960s produced a whole new kind of dance music called the soul and R&B. The 70s is the discotheque era and ruled by DJs who controlled the music in nightclubs.
Today, dance music has been injected with various musical flavors and influences. Combination of one or two genres to produce dance music is fast becoming the trend. However, it has now taken a lower profile and an underground appeal. It has taken refuge in niche radio stations but also gaining a great number of urban artists producing their own kind of dance music. Hip-hop, one of the most popular music genres, took its inspiration from the 70s funk and disco. It is safe to say that dance music is greatly influenced by black music in the previous eras.
Popular Dance Songs
To be classified as dance music, the song must have a 4/ 4 danceable feel. It can either have a rapid or slow beat. It can also be a song that causes the floor to get moving. Although it is synonymous to electronic music, it is important to take note that dance music can be anything like jazz, pop, rock, and other kinds of music meant for dancing. The 80s saw the biggest number of dance music flooding the charts after Kraftwerk successfully penetrated the mainstream with their synth-electronic style. Here are some of the most popular dance songs that have made many clubbers hit the dance floor.
“I Feel Love” by Donna Summer – taken from her album Remember Yesterday – its electronic background ushered in an electronic music genre that was widely utilized in the 80s.
“Vogue” by Madonna – from the album “I’m Breathless”. It became a huge hit and a chart topper in many countries. It also established Madonna as one of the best dance music artists of all time.
“Billie Jean” by Michael Jackson – from the album “Thriller”. There’s no doubt that this song will go down the history of dance music. It is characterized by a distinct bass line and the unmistakable hiccups of Michael Jackson.
“Sweet Dreams” by Eurhythmics – from the album “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” . It was a big commercial success and managed to climb the No. 1 spot of the Billboard Top 100.
“I’m Every Woman” by Chaka Khan – taken from Chaka Khan’s debut album -“Chaka”. It reached No. 1 on the Top 100 as well as the R&B chart. It was Chaka Khan’s powerful voice that made this song indelible in many dance music lists.
“Erotic City” by Prince – a controversial song with a sexy groove, Prince’s falsetto, rhythm guitar, and synthesizer make for a perfect combination of a dance song.
“Dreamlover” by Mariah Carey – from the album “Music Box”. It features a sample from the song Blind Alley. Mariah’s vocal is powerful and with a house beat – “Dreamlover” becomes an enduring dance track.
House Music Artists
House music has almost owned the right to dance music, thanks to the slew of DJs who have emerged over the years and made the crossover to the mainstream. It only makes sense to give them a little space and mention their accomplishments.
Aphex Twin is one of the most influential electronic artists who consistently produce unique style and arrangement. His music is a fusion of various musical backdrops. The Prodigy is an electronic band that mixes rave, hardcore, breakbeat, and a host of different styles that endear them to those who haven’t even heard of electronic music before. Daft Punk is another success story in the genre of house music. They have managed to rake in huge album sales and rave reviews. They have collaborated with some of the biggest names in the music industry and have also dabbled into other areas of the entertainment scene like writing and directing.
The earlier years of hip-hop scene were very much influenced by black music and Africa Bambaataa was one of its major contributors. He initiated break-beat deejaying and created a sound based on electronic funk. The group Kraftwerk is also one of the pioneers of house music. They are the true representation of electronic music as they use electronic instruments and computer-generated sound.
Dance Music and Movies
Dance music is heavily used in movies and movies were even created around the story of a song. There are a number of dance movies produced over the years and many of them have received positive praises because of their unforgettable soundtrack. In 1963, the movie Dirty Dancing set a new bar for other dance movies to follow. Saturday Night Fever, a movie that propelled John Travolta to stardom put the groove back to disco. It was backed by a successful soundtrack album and the unforgettable moves from the lead star. Flashdance is another dance movie that perfectly defined the dance scenes of the 80s. It introduced a new fashion statement, culture, and most of all music. Save the Last Dance in the late 90s used a combination of hip hop, rap, and classical ballet. It also revolutionized a choreography that is a cross between hip hop and ballet. In recent years, dance movies like Step Up became popular because of their awesome choreography and heavy use of pop and dance music.
History And Use Of The Bass Guitar
The bass guitar has been derived from the double bass, which was used in the late 1950’s. Having 4 strings, these instruments add the lower tones to a musical performance. Experimentation with the bass had started as early as the 1920’s. It wasn’t until the 50’s however, that a proper bass instrument was formed.
In the mid 20th century jazz became popular. As double bass’s were used those days, they were often not heard due to the lack of amplification. The drums, banjos and other instruments in the band drowned out the sound of the bass. Until the 1950 when the first electric bass came into existence with modern amplification techniques.
The bass guitar is played like all guitars with the player holding it close to his body in a horizontal position. The strings are plucked with hand or with the plectrum. In the 1970’s, the slapping technique became popular.
Today, the bass guitar ranges from 4 strings up to 11 strings. The 5, 6 and 7 strings providing the mid range while the 11 string starts from a lower than human hearing going up to a very high active. Electric bass guitar players use various configurations. These changes are made by using preamplifiers and speaker sets. Signal processors are also varied to provide new soundscapes.
In night clubs, combo amplifiers are used. These amplifiers are fixed with single loud speakers to make them portable and effective.
The body of the instrument can be of wood or graphite. A wide range of finishing is applied to make it look good. IT can be colored or simply clear white. The work done on the body is fine engineering and delicate balances have to be maintained.
A hot debate rages on what to call this instrument. For non musicians, the term bass guitar is common, while hard core players like to call it electric bass or simple electric bass. Slowly but surely however, this instrument has gathered a large following which likes to use its own jargon.
The electric bass is a part of modern country music, post 1970 jazz and funk. Used mainly to provide backing, it adds a depth to the music. This instrument has added a whole new color to our musical pleasure. In sole music particularly, the bass guitar is effective.
Are sound effects used? Well, yes and no. As the bass guitar sets the tone for the rest of the band, sound effects are not often used, unlike electric guitars. Modern bands however have started experimenting with distortion units to add a new flavor to the bass and low key that they provide behind the music.
As we go into a new century, electric bass’s become more and more popular. All bands use it today to add a subtle background. Many groups like U2 even use it to give a haunted feeling increasing emotional attachment with the music. Newer techniques have made this instrument a crucial part of any musical group today.
Learning To Dance In New Hampshire
If you would live in New Hampshire in the Nashua or Southern NH area, and you are interenst in dancing classes for you or your children, there are a few good dance schools which offer a full range of dance classes.
Some of the different types of dance classes you may think about taking are classes like “Early Dance”; These classes are specially designed to provide children between three and six years of age with a strong foundation in dance and movement. Through participation in these types of programs, young children can learn the basic elements of movement and dance and some elementary positions of ballet. You may find tap dance classes for the older children of four and five year old, and the six year old classes you may find some jazz. Additionally, students may learn the basics of classroom behavior that is required throughout their dancing years.
Also for the younger crowd, you will find dance classes such as “Creative Gym”; usually designed for three to five year olds. The emphasis is on fun, incorporating tumbling and balancing, using equipment and playing games.
Creative Movement classes are specifically designed for self expression, creativity, gaining awareness of their own movement and increasing self esteem. Usually covered are the basic fundamentals of dance and movement space, time, levels, locomotion (walking, jumping, running, hopping etc.) and non locomotion (bending, twisting, stretching etc.) to name a few.
You may also find ballet classing in New Hampshire, which is the foundation of all dance forms. Dance students are strongly encouraged to study ballet. Body placement and flexibility are taught and developed through barre, adagio and allegro work.
Also there is “Pointe”, jazz and tap in NH at various NH dance studios, and for the more advance dance classes, there are modern dance classes – Nikolais and Humphrey dance technique may be studied. These techniques develop self expression, understanding of movement progressions and rhythm. Laban’s movement efforts are also introduced through improvising.
And finally, you many want to learn Hip Hop dance; a stylized form of dance that incorporates both jazz and funkmovement to contemporary music. New Hampshire is a great place to learn to dance and you will find a few of the best dance studios in New England right here in Southern NH.
Improvisation in music is the act of spontaneously creating new melodies, harmonies or rhythms within the scope of an existing composition. Jazz music relies heavily on improvisation, but nearly every type of music makes use of improvisation by the performer. The importance of improvisation varies based on the particular type of music.
- The major traditions of Indian classical music, Carnatic and Hindustani, both rely on improvisation. Musicians improvise nearly all of the music when performing a raga, which is a series of notes used as a framework for a single performance. Raga performances must reflect the time of day, season and mood of the audience in their improvisation, and can therefore be different each time a musician performs.
Folk and Street
- Many forms of folk music from around the world incorporate improvisation into their performances. Examples include Gypsy musicians in Europe and the Middle East and fiddle and banjo players in early American rural life. Street musicians often improvise the lyrics to music they perform, such as corridos in Mexico or freestyle raps in urban areas of the United States and Canada. Musicians perform many such songs differently each time because the songs move from performer to performer aurally, without a written version to rely on.
- Improvisation once played a larger role in Western classical music than today. Composers included fewer details in their scores until the 19th century and expected performers to interpret their compositions more freely. Mozart, Beethoven and Bach all performed improvised music during their lifetimes. The cadenza, a specified portion of a classical composition that is not written out and thus must be improvised, is the only remaining vestige of this tradition.
- Rock music incorporates improvisation in several ways. Psychedelic rock music in the 1960s and 1970s featured musicians who performed extended guitar solos that lasted more than 10 minutes at a time, while the typical rock song is three to five minutes long. The Grateful Dead incorporated longer improvisations into their live concerts, during which the entire band would improvise for up to an hour or longer. The “jam band” subgenre of rock music includes bands whose performances often include extended improvisations over a set rhythm or chord progression.
Jazz is a culmination of American culture and musical styles. Since the early 1900s, jazz has made itself the quintessential American music. From its origins in New Orleans and through its many permutations, jazz remains a trademark of American culture.
- Recordings of jazz began to emerge in 1917, but it most likely existed in some form before then. Jazz stemmed from blues and ragtime, two styles some consider to be the first forms of jazz. The black Creole subculture of New Orleans became the epicenter for jazz. These people were Spanish and French-speaking individuals who rose to a high cultural status in the 19th century. Opposite the Creole culture were uneducated and poor African Americans, and a segregation law brought these two cultures together, mixing the Parisian-educated Creole musicians and blues and gospel-singing African Americans. Since its birth, jazz has evolved into an art form and is the subject of studies at universities worldwide.
- Ragtime is perhaps the first style of jazz music, and it features syncopation, or a rhythm that places emphasis on a beat that is typically not emphasized. Classic jazz is the style that stemmed from the merging of Creole and black culture in New Orleans, and its characteristic is the inclusion of big-band instruments, including saxophone, clarinet, trumpet, trombone and tuba. In 1925, “hot jazz” emerged with Louis Armstrong and his impressive improvised solos. The use of improvisation continued with Chicago-style jazz. By the 1930s, there was a surge of the swing style, which included big band instruments and dancing. Also during this time, the Kansas City style emerged as small ensemble swing and soul. Gypsy jazz, invented by Django Reinhardt, combined American swing and French dance music. Bebop, developed in the 1940s, focused on improvisation not only from the melodic line, but also from the harmony. “Cool” jazz emerged in the 1940s as a combination of bebop and classic jazz. Modern jazz is more free-flowing and improvisational.
- Jazz had its inception in New Orleans, but it is now a nationwide and even worldwide spread. Many styles of jazz take their names from the city where it was developed, such as Kansas City jazz and Chicago jazz. Cool jazz was nicknamed “West Coast Jazz” when it began, as it was formed in the Los Angeles area.
- The mixing of Creole and African American cultures and musical styles brought a combination of African and European rhythms. Jazz rhythms employ the swing beat, which has become characteristic of the genre. Jazz also borrowed “blues notes” from the blues’ additions to the pentatonic scale. The “call and response” technique also became a staple of jazz. Most important, the philosophy of jazz was clear–establishing the need for democracy and creative self-expression.
- The significance of jazz can be noticed by its varying styles, innovations and complexity. Jazz can have a intricate rhythm and harmonic scheme, features that are studied at universities worldwide. While borrowing some creations from other styles, such as blues and European folk music, jazz also made the music its own. The fact that jazz is still undergoing changes today shows that is it ultimately timeless and a classic American tradition.
Let’s get rid of one myth right here! One common myth floating around is that jazz music is complicated. Some people have the idea that it can only be learned by unraveling the deep mysteries of the inner being – like it’s some sort of mystical experience that requires years of learning theories, scales and chords. That thought alone is overwhelming and as a result, we need to refocus our attention to one thing – keeping it simple.
If you seriously want to become a better jazz guitar player, then keeping it simple is all you need to get where you want to go. Start with the basics. You already know that you’ll need some knowledge of jazz guitar scales and chords. You’ll also need a mentor or a teacher who can help you develop your talent and skill and lastly, you’ll need to begin developing confidence in your playing ability (this means practicing what you’ve learned). For the new player, these basic activities will help you progress in your learning and soon, you’ll be looking for the intermediate and advanced teachings in jazz guitar!
The first step to learning how to play jazz guitar is to invest in some jazz guitar lessons. In the basic type of lesson, you should be learning the different scales and chords from a teacher who isn’t trying to impress you with his or her blinding knowledge and ego. Instead, find a teacher who keeps it simple so that you can grow as a student.
Know that you have to invest some time into your playing and practice! One of the players I met used to avidly videotape his playing the gypsy jazz guitar so that he could improve his playing technique. Another woman I met used to listen to a melody over and over again until she had it solidly in her mind. As she listened to the melody, she attempted to memorize it and recreate it on her guitar. In fact, she’s memorized a lot of tunes that way. A few years ago, I knew of a student who used to go over the lesson he just learned for hours, and I literally mean hours, until he knew it inside and out. I think he was just looking for an excuse to play, though, because even after he knew the lesson, he didn’t quit.
Before you get out there and start buying your jazz guitar amps and other gear, consider if you’ll have the time to do the basic things you need to do to learn all about playing jazz guitar. Set your learning and practice habit up for success by keeping it simple and you will reap the results of your investment!
The Beaches district of Toronto has long been noted for the way it is set apart from the rest of the city. In fact, most Toronto residents will correctly state that the Beaches district is a world apart from the rest of the city; the casual atmosphere, particularly during the summer, is at distinct odds from the hustle and bustle that can be found in the city in general. Even in the winter, the beautiful view of Lake Ontario afforded to Beaches area homes, through the lack of high rise condos along the shore means that there is an atmosphere of being set apart.
The Beaches is popular both for tourists to the Toronto area and for those looking to make a home. Woodbine Park is the perfect neighbourhood for those looking to live in the city, yet away from the crazy lifestyle that city living can sometimes mean. This new development includes homes of all sorts, from single-family stand-alone homes to condominium buildings. One of the most attractive features of the Woodbine Park community is Woodbine Beach, a vast expanse of sandy lakefront located just three minutes away from the centre of the community.
The beach includes several city developments, such as easily accessible playgrounds for children. In addition, Woodbine Park plays host to several annual events guaranteed to engage the interest of residents and visitors alike, such as the annual Jazz Festival, the Easter Day parade, and several walks and runs for charitable purposes.
Woodbine Park is one of Toronto’s newest planned communities, and as such includes several amenities above and beyond those which are found in other city neighbourhoods. At the very heart of the community is the 30-hectare Woodbine Park, from which the neighbourhood takes its name. The community also has such features as a full band shell, festival grounds, skating rinks, swimming pools and a library.
If you are looking for a home that is close enough to the Toronto city centre for an easy commute yet remote enough to afford some privacy, Woodbine Park at the Beaches is the perfect area for you. With several types of housing and amenities, it’s a neighbourhood that anyone would love to call home.
Public Enemy Tickets – Hip Hop Legends Return To The Stage
When you use Public Enemy tickets, you’re seeing a band that is as responsible as anyone for the emergence of today’s hip hop sound. The band was a group of fearless pioneers, and their influences on the entire music world may never stop being felt. Below are just a few examples of these influences and a look at how this historic group came together.
The group came together almost by chance, as several of the members were attempting to make it as DJ’s and spinners in the New York area. Chuck D, one of the founding members, worked at a local radio station that featured local rap artists, and it was here that his talents were discovered when he was basically having fun “rapping” off the air.
Chuck also made his living by working at a moving company, where he met and befriended Flavor Flav, who would ultimately become the “face” of the group. Over time, the two began to rehearse together, and they ultimately filled out the group and put together a demo tape that was distributed through their radio contacts.
Their sound was an instant success, and the band got to work on their albums and tours. It didn’t take long for Public Enemy tickets to become “the” concert tickets to have, and there were several reasons for their popularity, most notably their innovations that ultimately became their historic influences.
Public Enemy was seen as a truly innovative band for several reasons. They were one of the first bands to promote and perfect a newly-found genre, that of “rap-rock,” and this was due to their friendship with the heavy metal group Anthrax. This new sound also incorporated elements of funk and jazz, and their samplings came from a range of music never heard before.
Another of the band’s innovations also became an enormous source of controversy. They were the first big-time band to incorporate strong political messages into their lyrics, and these political positions were far from popular with the “mainstream” radio play lists of the time. Their stances were almost exclusively in support of African-American interests, which was a subject that was considered “taboo” until Public Enemy helped make it acceptable. With this success came several bands who followed in their footsteps as well as a host of musical works that continued to develop this theme.
Overall, Public Enemy can be seen as a band of pioneers. They are also known for their intense live shows, which is why anyone who looks at music from an historical perspective should grab some Public Enemy tickets for their upcoming shows.
Jazz music is a distinctly American music form. The genre was born when African music and rhythms, brought to America by enslaved Africans, mixed with European marching band music. Work songs, negro spirituals, and the tradition of call and response also contributed to the genre. Jazz is widely thought to have originated in the red light district of New Orleans, but after several evolutions, jazz has spread throughout the entire world.
- Ragtime was established in the 1890s and was the result of an evolution of traditional marches. Ragtime consisted of syncopated piano rhythms, which were common to African dance music and new to American music. In ragtime piano music, usually the left hand plays the bass notes while the right hand plays the melody. Ragtime music was composed and published, rather than improvised. The first composer to publish a ragtime piece was Ben Harney.
New Orleans Style
- New Orleans style jazz music evolved out of ragtime and became popular in the early 1900s. The bands consisted entirely of brass instrumentation. According to Vernick and Haydon, the earliest forms of New Orleans style jazz featured collective improvisation, wherein each player improvised at the same time. Jelly Roll Morton was a prominent player of this style.
- Chicago style jazz music became popular in the 1920s. This style is characterized by solo improvisation, prominent saxophone, a more frantic rhythmic style and a more swing-oriented drum style. Chicago style players relied on written arrangements and typically had a high technical ability. Benny Goodman made significant contributions to the genre.
- Bebop music became popular in the 1940s. This style is characterized by complex melodies and harmonies, fast tempos, small groups and an air of sophistication. Players often wore suits and berets and considered themselves cool and hip. Charlie Parker is one of the innovators of this style.
- Cool Jazz, also known as West Coast Jazz, was popularized in the 1950s. Cool evolved out of Bebop and is characterized by advanced harmonies, unusual instrument combinations, complex arrangements and little to no vibrato. Miles Davis’s album “Birth of the Cool” exemplifies the style.
- Smooth Jazz came into fashion in the 1980s. Synthesizers, electric keyboards, saxophones, bass guitar and programmed percussion are the predominant instrument choices, and they combine for a polished, downtempo sound. Smooth jazz has been the most commercially successful style of jazz. George Benson, Dave Koz and Najee have all been successful in the genre.
So you heard San José is boring and has nothing to offer the tourist? Think again. The ugly reputation about Costa Rica’s capital as being lame for the visitor circulates around hostels all over the country. What people fail to realize, however, is that it takes time to get to know a big city. Offer a city your time and it will open up to you like a flower reaching for the sun.
San José is the heart of Costa Rica with streets and corners from the history’s past and the in-the-making future. Artistic buildings, inviting city parks, grey concrete offices, huge shopping malls and all that it means to be a University city is the blend that creates this Central American capital. Indeed, it took me some time to figure out the sorting of this mix but it didn’t take long to add San José to my favorite capitals- both in Latin America and in the world.
San José has something new to offer in terms of art, culture and events every time I visit. If those things are your sweetest cup of tea, try visiting during February and March for various arts and street festivals. Often when we travel we tend to stay in cities only for a couple of days. Below I share with you some of my San José top activities so that you can get to know the city better, even if you stop by only for the weekend.
Stay in the area called San Pedro, or go there easily by taxi or a cheap bus ride. Participate or simply watch the buzzing student party street Calle la Amargura in central San Pedro, where you’ll find both people and music from all over the world. Note that you will need an ID to get in to most clubs around town.
Grab a city map from the hotel or tourist office down town to learn the street system; it is built in a grid with most streets being one-way streets. Try walking everywhere to get to see as much as possible of the city’s different looking barrios (neighborhoods). Locate the organic food market Fería Verde de Aranjuez north of the city
center in Barrio Escalante, which is easily accessible by foot. Buy environment friendly handicrafts, clothes, foods and more before walking back to Parque España and Parque Morazan for some Saturday activities arranged by Enamorate De Tu Ciudad. The organization offers everything from children’s fun to free yoga and concerts all day.
Check the schedule for San Pedro’s or Escazu’s famous Jazz Café. If you’re lucky some popular salsa band is playing and if your feet are aching it’s fun just to watch the steam on the dance floor! Note, however, that it gets crowded so get there early if you want a seat. This place is pricey but worth it! Besides, you’ve been spending all day doing free stuff in the park and snacking cheap organic food, so why not?
Before going to bed, make sure to stop for a moment or two to breathe in the spectacular city view by night.
San José is located close to the beach with both Jaco and Puntarenas about a 2-3 hours busride away and Josefinos like to go sun bathing during the weekends. Especially on Sundays. Thus, if you want to avoid the crowd catch the bus on Monday instead and spend the day enjoying Costa Rican coffee at the Teatro Nacional Café.
Continue the afternoon to Mercado the Artesanias, located just around the corner from Teatro Nacional and Plaza de la Cultura (you did keep the map, right?). Look for actual handicrafts among all the souvenirs! Or why not stroll the main street Avenida Central/Paseo Colón all the way to the Sabana park, where you can participate in a variety of outdoor activities or watch others who do while you have a picnic in the grass.
In San José there is always something going on and event information is easy to find. Check out the Tico Times newspaper or sanjosevolando for regular updates.
Although there is no individual musician who can be directly linked to having created jazz music, a number of performers throughout the 1800s and early 1900s contributed to its ultimate creation. The majority of the influence for jazz came from the African-American culture in the United States during slavery and after Reconstruction.
- African slaves in the United States adapted a number of European instruments, most notably the violin, to more traditional African music. European-Americans in turn popularized the music in minstrel shows.
- One of the first major figures in the musical form was Louis Moreau Gottschalk. He adapted the African-American minstrel music into piano renditions. This became popular prior to the Civil War.
- The rise of ragtime music popularized some of the African-American jazz performers themselves. In 1895, Ernest Hogan gained a major hit with “All Coons Look Alike To Me.” Scott Joplin joined him in 1899 with his international hit “Maple Leaf Rag.”
- What ultimately became known as early jazz was developed in New Orleans. A number of African-American artists performed in brothels and bars using marching band instruments. They merged ragtime with funeral-procession music to create a new style.
- The origin of the word “jazz” is unknown. According to the American Dialect Society, it appears to have been used as slang during the early part of the 1900s. It first appeared in print in the “San Francisco Bulletin” on March 3, 1913.
The guitar (violao) is a musical instrument that utilizes strings to produce sound. Usually, guitar is made with six strings, but four, seven, eight, ten and twelve string guitars are not rare.
Guitar (violao) is considered as an instrument in many forms of music like blues, country, flamenco, rock and even pop. Acoustically playing, the guitar involves production of the tone by vibration of the string and modulation by the hollow body. Electronic manipulation can also be done on the tone using an amplifier.
Combinations of various woods, with either nylon or steel strings are used for the construction of guitars. The person who makes and repairs string instruments like guitar is called a luthier.
History and development of string instruments similar to guitar (violao) can be traced back to at least 5,000 years. In those days, when synthetic material was not available for making guitars, a guitar was defined as `a long, fretted neck, flat wooden soundboard, ribs, and a flat back instrument, most often with incurved sides`.
There are two major types of guitars:
Acoustic guitar (violao): A soundboard (present in the front of the guitar body in the form of a piece of wood) is used to produce the sound from this kind of guitars. No external arrangement or device is needed to produce sound. This makes the acoustic guitar quieter than other commonly found band or orchestra instruments and often an external amplifier is used to make the guitar sound audible and to match the sound of other band instruments. The latest range of acoustic guitars come with a host of pick-ups for amplifying and modifying the raw guitar sound.
Within the acoustic guitar type, the sub-categories include: Classical guitars; Flamenco guitars; Steel string guitars (include the flat top or `folk` guitar); Twelve string guitars; Arch-top guitars; Renaissance or Baroque guitars; Resonator, resophonic or Dobro guitars; Russian guitars; Acoustic bass guitars; Tenor guitars; Harp guitars; Extended range guitars; Guitar battente.
Electric guitars: Electric guitar bodies are solid, semi-hollow or hollow. The sound produced is little and low without amplification. An amplifier forms an integral part of electric guitars. Vibrations of steel strings converted into electric signals by electromagnetic pick-ups are fed in to an amplifier using a cable or radio transmitter. The sound is often modified either using electronic devices or through distortion of valves naturally. The pick-ups here are of two types: single line or double line, each can be either active or passive. Electric guitar sound is most commonly used in jazz, rock-n-roll and blues style of music.
Construction of the guitar (violao) is based on whether the player is left-handed or right-handed. Usually, players use their dominant hand to pluck the strings. For most of the people, it is the right hand. The other hand of the player is on the frets for depressing and gripping guitar strings.
The various major guitar components include: headstock, nut, fretboard, frets, truss rod, inlays, neck, heel or neck joint, strings, guitar body and pickups.
There are certain accessories that might be helpful while playing a guitar (violao). Accessories like: Plectrum – also called the guitar pick, is used for picking the strings. It is made of a plastic like hard material; Slides – used for creating glissando effect in blues and rock genre of music. Neck of a bottle, knife blade or round metal bar, any of these can be used as a slide; Copatasto – it is used for changing pitch of open strings.
How To Leave Your Day Job & Teach Guitar For A Living In The Least Risky Manner Possible
By Tom Hess
Wish you didn’t have to work 40 hours every week at a job you hate? If you’re a guitar player, this kind of job will both keep you from playing guitar, and stop you from pursuing a music career. However, you can change this if you really want to. Fact is, teaching guitar for a living is by far the greatest way to do something you love while also making good money.
Why should you teach guitar rather than working at a normal 9-5 job?:
-When you teach guitar, you can easily earn much way money than you ever could at a regular full-time job (successfully guitar teachers can easily earn $100k or more annually).
-Guitar teachers do not have to work full time to make good money, unlike at a regular job where working full-time is the only way to pay your bills and survive.
-You get to make your own time when you are a guitar teacher. Want to take a trip out of town? You can do it. Want to start working on growing a music career? No problem. Additionally, you will actually make money for your time off. Contrast this with working a normal job where you have to request vacation days (where someone else decides when you can or can’t take time off).
-Teaching guitar is a risk free job. Every single one of your students is like a separate source of income. If one of them happens to leave, you’re still okay because you’ve got plenty of other sources of income coming in from the students who’ve stayed. At any regular job, you get one check, and if that check doesn’t show up, you’re ruined.
That said, so many guitarists completely look past teaching guitar because they believe they simply are unprepared for it. Truth is, probably are ready to teach even if you don’t think you are. Here is a tiny list of the frequent complaints (fears) guitarists have about being able to teach guitar, that are NOT valid:
Guitar Teaching Fear #1: You don’t have good enough guitar skills.
Reality: You don’t need to be an incredible player to teach guitar. If you want to, you can make an excellent living teaching guitar by teaching exclusively beginners.
Guitar Teaching Fear #2: You don’t know enough to even make it through one lesson with a student.
Reality: You don’t need to be an expert teacher to get results for your initial students. Your skills will come to you over time and you’ll just keep getting better.
Guitar Teaching Fear #3: You aren’t sure if you have enough things to teach over a long period of time.
Reality: It’s not necessary to know the entire year’s lesson plan just to teach your first student. In fact, you should NOT overwhelming your students with new information during every single lesson.
Guitar Teaching Fear #4: It’ll be too hard to support yourself financially as you transition from your day job into teaching.
Reality: It’s not as hard to quit your job and teach guitar for a living as you might think. Developing a new guitar teaching business requires almost no cost – in other words, you can start earning money teaching while you are still working at your current job with absolutely NO risk of losing money in the process.
Discover more about what you must do to get ready for teaching your first students by filling out this free guitar teaching ability assessment.
How You Can Phase Out Your Day Job To Get Into Teaching Guitar Full-Time.
For tons of guitar teachers, leaving their day jobs might feel very risky. Fact is, there is nothing to be afraid of, it’s actually very easy to phase out your day job without putting yourself in financial ruin. The following is what you need to do right now to start transitioning away from your day job and begin teaching guitar for a living:
1. Make it a point to attract “serious” guitar students only
-Pack your weekends with students, then save the income you make from doing this. After saving enough money to cover half a year of expenses, leave your job and start growing your teaching business even larger.
-Build a website for your teaching business and advertise there in addition to using paper flyers in local music shops (with permission), supermarkets, parking lots, recreation centers and neighborhoods.
-Try to better understand how to convert the potential students who contact you into paying guitar students. This is actually pretty simple, learn more checking out this free resource about getting new guitar students to take lessons.
2. Consistently Work To Develop And Improve Your Guitar Teaching Skills
Even if you are new to teaching guitar, you CAN get great results for your students. Go through the following steps to start improving your guitar teaching skills:
-Focus on your main area of expertise (i.e. playing jazz chords, metal technique, whatever it is etc.). It’s likely that there is someone out there who needs help in this area.
-Learn how to successfully begin teaching beginning guitar students.
-Find a guitar teacher trainer who can show you effective strategies for transforming so-so students to great students, plus effectively teaching students of all kinds of learning styles.
Now that you have read the ideas in this article, you are much closer to actually teaching guitar for a living. To prepare yourself for quitting your day job forever and teaching guitar instead, fill out this free guitar teaching ability assessment.
|Tom Hess is a highly successful guitar teacher, recording artist and the guitar player. He helps people from all over the world learn how to teach guitar. Visit his website tomhess.net to get free guitar teacher resources and to read more guitar teaching articles.|
Jazz: The Forbidden Music
There was a time in history when Jazz the music was banned during World War II when it was considered a plight for freedom against Hitler’s Nazi regime due to what it represents. Jazz music is the product of America that was creatively invented by African American from culture, and all the elements of the American life that influenced this style of music.
Jazz music is a symbol of freedom, hope and the ability of express ones self in through one of best art forms which is music. Meaning, African Americans fought oppression since the beginning of slavery, and Jazz music represented that resistance. Jazz music has a foundation of the basic rules of composition, but it has since expanded its way toward newer forms of music.
America who also gained their freedom from Europe joined showed their patriarchy by listening to the Jazz music on records and on the radio to encourage their fellow Americans to believe in their country, and the freedom it stands for. Hollywood, celebrity musicians and Jazz musicians even supported freedom by joining patriotic films to get their point across to the world. This act caused Hitler and Stalin to fear the effect Jazz music would have on all who listens who could easily be influenced by the idea of freedom, and patriotism.
In the year 1921 there were Americans who did not favor Jazz music or the Jazz dance. There were activist who stated that Jazz is a type of menace that is worse that alcohol, and that it would be better to wipe Jazz out of existence. In Germany, Jazz and all other American music was banned in the country before and after Americans joined the war. Stalin forbid the playing of Jazz music at the end of the 1945 war throughout the Soviet Union, and banned the use of saxophones. Jazz was called “the music of blacks by Hitler as a reason for the prohibition of Jazzmusic. Nevertheless, Jazz music was embraced by all who heard it around the globe.
In fact, It was adored by those who supported the resistance of such a war. In the area of Azerbaijan the year of the 1950’s produced even more forbidden Jazz music into a new style of Jazz known as Mugam that came from the Baku style of music. The sound of Jazz produces an atmosphere of relaxation and freedom that even spread to Algeria who wrote a form of Jazz that spread all around their country and in Europe known as Rai in the late 1960’s. Though there were many haters of Jazz music who forbid the use of it those who understood loved it.
Those who did not like Jazz wrote books on it titled “Vo do do de o Blues” against Jazz and blues. Another title was “Anti rag time girl” about a lady who hates Jazz music. However, when the underground clubs broke the law discreetly to make a home for jazz in Speakeasies they also spread the gospel of Jazz music all around the world.
During the late 1930s and 1940s swing jazz became the most popular music in the United States, and the world. French jazz music was popular, and American musicians drew big audiences when they played there.
Swing was the name assigned to big band music. This was instrumental jazz music sometimes accompanied by vocalists. The music was called swing. Some swing was jazz and not all swing was jazz or swung. Sing, Sing, Sing, is a swing example by Benny Goodman. He called this type of tune “killer diller” and used this type of tune to animate and rejuvenate the audience. The most famous version is done at Carnegie Hall.
In the late 1940s jazz changed from big bands to small groups because of economic reasons. At this time Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Thelonious Monk, Bud Powell and others popularized bebop. This became known as modern jazz music. Other styles such as cool, hard bop, and advant garde evolved and fans of one style tended to dislike the others.
In the late 1940s jazz changed from big bands to small groups because of economic reasons. At this time Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Thelonious Monk, Bud Powell and others popularized bebop. This became known as modern jazz music. Other styles such as cool, hard bop, and advant garde evolved and fans of one style tended to dislike the others.
East Coast Jazz
New York was the hub of jazz on the East coast, and it was influenced by Charlie Parker and the bebop style. As the ‘40s moved into the ‘50s several musicians developed into players that would make some of the greatest jazz recordings and legendary jazz albums. East coast jazz was defined by improvising the written music, had aggressive rhythms, heavy timber and vibrato.
In addition to Parker, Monk and Gillespie, Sonny Rollins, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Charlie Christian, Kenny Clarke, Clifford Brown, Wes Montgomery, Max Roach, Charlie Mingus, Art Blakey, Lee Morgan, Sonny Clark and others became major jazz contributors from the East coast jazz style.
A few of the great jazz music albums were: Art Blakey, Moanin’, Miles Davis, Milestones, Clifford Brown and Max Roach, At Basin Street, Sonny Rollins, Saxophone Colossus, Thelenious Monk, Brilliant Corners.
Birth Of The Cool
Birth of the Cool is the Miles Davis album is considered to be the one that kicked off the cool sound. The nontet featured several musicians important in both the East Coast and West Coast jazz movements. The instrumentation was selected to give a balanced sound. The musical arrangements featured a lighter more lyrical sound than the hard edged bop. Most arrangements were done by Gerry Mulligan and Gill Evans. Davis and Evans later collaborated on Miles Ahead, Porgy and Bess, and Sketches of Spain albums. Birth of the Cool was originally over several sessions on ten inch discs and later combined on one 12 in long playing record.
Blue Note records is considered the best jazz label ever. They have a catalog of great jazz albums. Other East coast labels include, Prestige, Riverside
Ted Giola wrote in his book, West Coast Jazz, modern jazz music wasn’t as established on the West coast as it was on the East coast. West coast jazz in the late 1940s was more traditional. Dave Brubeck formed small groups that played in Northern California. His musical training was classical which influenced his music. Brubeck’s played light and calm melodies. His career got a boost by disk jockey Jimmy Lyons who made his group more widely known. His music gained popularity when alto saxophonist Paul Desmond joined the group. In the late ‘50s he experimented with odd time signatures.
West Coast Jazz
Hints of West coast jazz had been played by Lester Young and even Charlie Parker and others before the style and name became known. The hallmarks of the sound are calmness, restrained timbre, more sophisticated harmonies and limited vibrato.
Along with Brubeck; Gerry Mulligan, Shelly Manne, Shorty Rogers, Stan Getz, Art Pepper, Chet Baker, Bud Shank, Jimmy Giuffre, Russ Freeman, and others played West coast jazz.
West coast jazz became known as white jazz as many of the main practitioners were white, and it was considered inferior for that reason. Some East coast fans didn’t consider it real jazz and pretty much ignored it.
Some of the Southern California players got work in movies and television programs. Shelly Manne worked as a studio drummer and was in the movie, The Man with the Golden Arm, with Shorty Rogers. Manne also did work for the TV show Peter Gunn, where he was occasionally onscreen. Manne had uncredited background appearances as a drummer in other television programs. He wrote the theme for the TV show, Daktari.
Gerry Mulligan, baritone saxophone, was famous for forming a quartet with trumpeter Chet Baker without a piano.
West coast jazz was accessible, and credited with gaining fans that later enjoyed other jazz genres. Listeners found it a looser and cooler jazz.
Contemporary, Pacific Jazz and Fantasy were the best known West coast record labels.
East Coast Meets West Coast
There may have been a difference as far as jazz literature and fans were concerned, but maybe not so much with the musicians. Miles Davis was known as East coast, but madeBirth of the Cool. Sonny Rollins went West and made a trio album with Shelly Manne and Rollins’s bassist, Ray Brown. The album, Way out West, is also noted for having one of jazzes most unusual cover photographs.
The Modern Jazz Quartet and Ornette Coleman were harder to categorize. They roughly fit into the West coast folder. The Modern Jazz Quartet was jazz with a classical flavor. Their sound was unique and had a classical chamber music sound. The musical director was pianist John Lewis and featured Milt Jackson on vibes, Kenny Clarke on drums and Percy Heath played bass. Connie Kay replaced Clarke in 1955. Their most known tunes are Django and Bags Groove.
Ornette Coleman played a plastic alto saxophone which gave a different sound to start with. He wrote free style jazz which had few rhythmic and chord structures. He acquired fans and detractors. Compositions such as Pretty Woman became a tune other jazz musicians included on their albums. Popular Colman records of the ‘50s includeSomething Else, Tomorrow is the Question and The Shape of Jazz To Come.
East coast and West coast were jazz styles and a good jazz musician could change his style to fit. During the 1960s the distinction began to disappear as East and West coast began to blend. The terms faded away and different forms of jazz took parts of each to incorporate into the new forms the music took. Players from the coasts era still played and were popular and made classic jazz songs. It was a great creative jazz era.
You need to find your personal sound. You need to find that something that says “Yeah! This is who I am!” That is, as you already know, or will find out shortly, an ongoing process. Once you find the direction you want to pursue,…once you find your personal sound,…you will be nurturing it for the rest of your life. That is, if you want to be successful like those you admire.
One thing though, is the positive, and proper attitude. I personally think the best attitude to adopt, is one of humbleness. We must remember that we do not hold the monopoly on talent! There is,…and will always be someone who can do it better, play it louder, faster, higher, or lower. When you can realize that we are all different, but we all live on the same planet,…we will be better off. I personally don’t like competition. I realized some time ago that everyone has something to offer. I love to hear someone who has paid the price, and put forth the sacrifice, and made the extreme effort to show themselves worthy of the praise, and admiration of others.
They have in fact, found their personal sound! They have bridged the gap between their soul, and their instrument, or vocal chords! That is what it is all about. The world needs these ultimate artists, instrumentalists, and vocalists!…The ultimate soloists. This is just as important as a great teacher, a doctor, an engineer. The Ultimate Soloists, Instrumentalists, and Vocalists are in fact,…the embodiment of all that makes us human. What sets some apart from others,…What makes some worthy of that high calling, and responsibility is their total commitment, passion, determination, and sheer desire! They realize the Power of Sound,… and they take their responsibility seriously.
Harmonicas: Finding the Harp that Fits Your Needs
Harmonicas are wonderful musical instruments. They’re versatile, they’re relatively inexpensive, they fit in your pocket, and their music can evoke a wide range of feelings. Harmonicas – or harps, as they are commonly called – are used in a wide variety of musical genres, such as bluegrass, the blues, folk, rock, country, Gospel, jazz, and even Classical music.
If you want to learn to play the harp and are planning to take instruction, you should understand the different types of harmonicas that are available. The leading makers of harmonicas include Suzuki, Hering, Hohner, and Bushman. Beyond brands, though, there are other differences you should know about.
The harmonica that most people are familiar with is the ten-hole “Blues harp.” Each of the holes has two reeds, which are tuned to play different notes. Blues harps come in virtually every key, and each harmonica can play 19 musical notes.
Blues harps are a subcategory of diatonic harmonicas, so named because of the two reeds in each hole. Diatonic harmonics generally play only one key. Another type of diatonic harmonica is the octave harmonica, which is tuned so that each hole plays the same note, only an octave apart from one another. The tremolo harmonica also has two reeds, but one plays a slightly flat note and the other plays a slightly sharp note.
A different category of harmonica is the chromatic harmonica. These harmonicas typically have twelve, fourteen, or sixteen holes, and four reeds per hole. They also have a sliding bar that moves the air from the mouthpiece to a specific reed plate. Chromatic harmonicas are most often used in jazz and Classical music.
When you learn to play the harmonica, you’ll first be taught how to breathe correctly. Because successfully playing the harmonica involves both breathing out and breathing in, it’s important to breathe from your diaphragm. You’ll also learn how to correctly hold the harmonica, how to move it, and how to position your lips so you’ll achieve the right notes. You’ll also learn harmonica tablature, or tabs, which in instruction that replaces the need for learning to read music. Harmonica tabs tell you what actions you need to take, such as blowing in the fifth and sixth holes, rather than simply showing you music notation. For example, tablature might indicate an upward arrow with a number above it, indicating that you need to blow on that numbered hole, followed by a downward area with a number on top, indicating that you need to inhale on that hole. Tabs make learning to play the harmonica much easier than learning to play other instruments.
Choosing a Harp
Most harmonica instruction is given in the key of C, so it’s probably best to buy a diatonic or Blues harp in the key of C. Most experts recommend that beginners purchase harmonicas with plastic or aluminum combs (the body of the harmonica) rather than wood. Plastic and metal are both more comfortable and more durable. However, you should be aware that, over time, you’ll probably buy and try several different brands of harmonicas. Each person is unique, and each has to find the harmonica that is the best fit for his or her playing style.
All About Jazz Dance
The Art of Jazz dance is an amalgamation of different styles of dance that began between 1800’s, and the middle of the 1900’s rooted in African American movement. One man known for this type of dance was the star of vaudeville Joe Frisco around 1910 who danced in a unrestrained fashion in close vicinity to the ground while tossing his cigar, and derby in a juggling manner. The Jazz dance style up to the middle of 1950’s was Tap dance which was always performed with Jazz music such as the Jitterbug, Swing, Boogie Woogie, Lindy Hop, and the Charleston. Katherine Dunham is renowned choreographer and dancer studied the cultural dances of Caribbean in Haiti, Jamaica, Trinidad, Tobago, Martinique and Shango making this African American dance a modern work of pure art.
She took this style to Hollywood and Broadway who embraced a more refined Jazz dance. Modern Jazz Dance is a smooth style of dance roots from Tap, Ballet and Jazz music which is performed in many musicals from the Pajama Game to Cabaret to Chicago to music videos and the Las Vegas showgirl performances. The usual technique forJazz dance is that of a ballet dancer for balance and strength from doing slow movements. In contrast the typicalJazz dance has sharp movements, but the skills of ballet smoothes it down into a refined style.
Moreover, Jazz dance is such a versatile style that it can be combined with other dances from lyrical, contemporary and hip hop. Jazz dance like Jazz music can be combined with other dance styles to enhance the dance to another level. For instance, The United Kingdom witness a new movement of dancers in the 1980’s who danced when theJazz, and Funk music clubs was becoming unpopular known as Street Fusion Jazz Dance. Due to the new modern music scene, new groups who longed to keep the tradition of Jazz dance, and still leave room for the new styles.
There are two groups known for street fusion jazz dance known as IDJ ( I Dance Jazz), Brother in Jazz and JazzCotech. Famous people of the world of Jazz dance is Fred Astaire, Jerome Robbins, Jack Cole, and Bob Fosse. In the world of Jazz Dance there are terms people use to describe various dance movement.
Jazz Dance Terms:
Ad lib, Axel Turn, Ball Change, Barrel Jump, Barrel Turn, Bounce, Cake Walk, Cat walk, Catch Step, Chasse`, Coffee Grinder, Contract, Curve Or Arch, Dolphin, Drop and Recover, Fall, Fall Over The Log, Fan Kick, Figure 8, Flick, Flick Kick, Freeze, Funk, Head-Roll, Hinge, Hip Walk, Hip-Fall, Hip-Roll, Hitch Kick, Hop, Jazz Drag, Jazz Run,Jazz Split, Jazz Square, Jazz Walk, Jump Over The Log, Kick, Knee Fall, Knee Slide, Knee Turn, Lay Out, Limbo, Mess Around, Moonwalk, Pencil Turn, Pitch, Pivot Step, Primitive Squat, Release, Ripple, Shimmie, Shiver, Shoulder Fall, Shoulder Roll, Sissonne Fall, Skate, Snake, Snap, Spins, Spiral, Stag Leap, Step, Switch, Table Top, Tilt, Touch, Tripplettes, Turns, Twists, and the Worm.
Fashionable socks, with unique design and exciting colour, are a useful fashion accessory for men. Although not always on show, a subtle hint of colour and pattern when visible really catches the eye. Because most men wear a plain pair of socks, a fresh and funky pair demonstrates an unparalleled attention to detail. Fashionable socks are suitable for both casual and formal wear, but are perhaps most useful to liven up a suit and tie. In this article I will look at the different patterns and styles such as stripes, spots, paisley, argyle and floral.
Striped socks are the most popular style of fashionable men’s socks, a pattern which is used extensively in contemporary fashion. The stripes can vary from very subtle to the big and bold, making it a very versatile pattern. Every designer brand has a range of striped socks, but none are more iconic than the Paul Smith. All his products feature the branded stripe ‘strip’, which is made up of thin stripes of subtle browns mixed in with vibrant colours. The stripe has become unique to Paul Smith, and thus makes a particular design statement when it is featured all over the sock.
Duchamp-London, a premium men’s accessories brand, has a range of striking striped socks that pull no punches when it comes to colour. They have developed a particular colour palette unique to the brand which presents an image of confidence, luxury and success. They are particularly well known for their harlequin sock which has a chequered effect. Wearing a boldly patterned sock with a suit is a great way to inject some colour and detail into an otherwise plain look. Richard James, the Saville Row Tailor, understands how striped socks can work brilliantly with a suit. He uses bright yellows and greens to give formal wear a real boost. Ted Baker, the uniquely British fashion brand, show off their sense of humour with a range of men’s socks that play with the stripe, mixing up different weights of line.
The argyle sock has benefitted from a return to popularity over the past twenty years with fashion brands such as Pringle using it in their knitwear. It has a distinctively British look which combines English heritage with contemporary British cool. Originating from the tartan of the Scottish Campbell Clan lead by the “Duke of Agyll”, the Argyle pattern has a diamond shaped checkerboard pattern. The classic argyle has diagonal lines that cut through the diamonds for a 3-dimensional effect. The argyle sock has a casual and sports-country look that is very much in fashion at the moment. Despite its inherent laid back quality, the argyle sock can be worn with formal wear in muted colours such as charcoal and navy. The argyle sock though really comes into its own in whacky and vibrant colours, making it ideal for casual wear. There are several designer brands that are synonymous with argyle socks, most notably Burlington and Pringle.
The spotted sock is much less common than the striped sock, and is best suited to formal wear. It has a traditional look of old fashioned elegance, and is an excellent way of complementing a very smart and slick suit and tie. The classic style makes use of small dots, whilst a more modern approach uses larger spots or bubbles. For formal wear, choose a neutral base colour such as black or dark grey that is decorated with brightly coloured spots (such as red). For men who like to express their individuality, floral and paisley socks will appeal. Again suited to formal wear, they are ideally suited to occasions such as black tie and weddings. Paul Smith and Duchamp-London have a great collection of floral socks.
Fashionable men’s socks are not for every gentleman, but those who choose to wear them show off a unique look and daring personality. As most menswear is quite plain and classic, make use of the sock to inject colour and pattern.
|David Cole is a trained designer, and has worked in the men’s fashion industry for 4 years since graduating. He has a particular interest in men’s accessories, and runs a website called Herbert Jones Mens Accessories . It focuses on designer brands and offers products such as; mens underwear, mens socks, cufflinks, wallets, belts, bags and shaving accessories.|
Learn Blues Piano
It is not really difficult to learn to play the piano. Almost every individual loves music. Some like rock music, pop,jazz, alternative, rhythm and blues, and many others. Whatever style of music you love, you can play it on the piano. For you to learn to play different song styles on the piano, the very first thing that you have to learn are blues piano.
What exactly is blues piano? It is a music style and once you learn to play it on the piano you will have fewer troubles in learning to play other music styles. Keep on reading and by the end of this article, you will know a great deal about blues music and playing it on the piano.
To start with, you must know 12-bar blues. This is a very common progression if you want to do blues piano playing. To play this particular blues form, most pianists make use of seventh chords. A song is uslly broken into 3 sets. Each of the set consists of 4 bars. Start by playing the song on the C key. Use ‘I’ to illustrate the tone (C) in the C key. The IV tone is F and the V tone is G.
The initial set is played as I-I-I-I. The next set is played as IV-IV-I-I. The final set is V-IV-I-I. Use your right hand when playing these three sets on the piano. To come up with a sound that’s just like blues piano, try to master playing 7th chords.
For your left hand, follow the 8-note pattern. The pattern is like this: I-III-V-VI-VIIb-VI-V-III. When playing the C chord with the use of your right hand, the notes played will be C-E-G-A-Bb-A-G-E. While for the chord F, you will be playing F-A-C-D-Eb-D-C-A. For the chord G, you will be playing G-B-D-E-F-E-D-B.
Try to examine the chords and notes played both by the left and right hand. If you already know the different piano chords and notes, learning blues piano can be very easy. Before anything else, you will have to master 12-bar bluesin the key C. Once you’ve mastered it, you can try playing it using other keys.
If you want to establish a good foundation in playing the piano, you must learn to play the blues first. Many successful pianists started out by playing blues and then they slowly made their way into playing the music style that they love. Once you develop a strong foundation, the new lessons will be so much easier. Learning the different music styles is challenging but if you can play them with elegance and grace, your audience will love and praise your performance.
Find a good teacher that can teach you all the things you need to know about blues piano. If you can’t find a piano teacher, you can use other methods like using DVD or CD programs, online piano lessons, and a piano guide book. The learning process will be solely determined by you. If you’re serious with playing piano and if you’re determined to master your lessons, you will son learn to play blues piano.
You see, it takes some time before you can play really good. It might even take years of learning and constant practice. By exerting enough effort, time, and money, you can be a very good pianist.
There are multiple differences that set jazz apart from classical music, including the choice of instruments, the style of music, and how the music is played. Even though the two genres share some of the same instruments, the way the instruments are played and presented reveals the distinct nature of the two forms of music.
- One basic element that sets jazz apart from classical music is improvisation. This element is a creative process that enables the jazz musician to be spontaneous by making up music while it is being performed. Classical musicians usually perform musical notes exactly as written out on the page by a composer although in past times major figures such as Mozart and Beethoven were known for their improvisational abilities.
- The way that rhythms are performed is another basic element that separates the two styles of music. Even though both genres are based on a regular beat, the beats that are emphasized are different. Whereas classical music generally emphasizes the first beat of each measure, jazz music emphasizes the second beat of each measure and handles rhythm more flexibly, creating what is known as a “swing” effect. This tension created among the beats in jazz is called syncopation, a trait that can be traced back to one of the major precursors of jazz, ragtime. Ragtime itself, though, is sometimes categorized as a form of classical music since it it usually performed as written by composers such as Scott Joplin. Extremely complex rhythmic effects in classical music have been achieved by innovators such as Stravinsky and Messiaen.
- Jazz music often features a combination of brass, woodwind, and percussion instruments. Jazz big bands rely heavily on brass instruments, particularly saxophones, which are rarely used by classical composers, and the upright bass in jazz is usually plucked rather than bowed as it typically is in classical music. Classical orchestras feature woodwinds, brass, and percussion but also include bowed string instruments such as the violin, viola, and cello, which are rarely used in jazz. There are typically anywhere from 50 to 100 musicians that make up a classical orchestra. As another example of the differences in instrumentation, a piano trio in jazz typically consists of a piano, upright bass, and drums whereas in classical music it typically consists of a piano, violin, and cello. The piano is a central instrument of both classical and jazz.
Jazz musicians also play their instruments differently than classical musicians do, sometimes using slurs and “dirty” sounds that create tone colors distinct from what one usually hears in classical music. The composer George Gershwin, who was influenced by early jazz, wrote a famous clarinet glissando at the beginning of his Rhapsody in Blue that imitates the “dirty” sound of jazz.
- Historically, jazz musicians have usually performed in more casual venues such as nightclubs or hotels or specialized jazz clubs. Classical players usually perform in more formal settings, such as a concert hall or amphitheater. Over time, though, jazz has increasingly moved into concert halls and other more formal settings as well. The famous jazz clarinetist Benny Goodman played Carnegie Hall back in 1938. Today, jazz, like classical music, is taught in universities and conservatories and considered by many to be “serious music.”
- Classical music traces its roots back to the 11th century, to Gregorian chants and plainsong developed from monodic (written as one musical line) to organum (two or three lines moving simultaneously but independently, bringing out harmony). By the fifteenth century, composers began writing choral music and adding instrument compositions to the lines of music. Since the Renaissance, the history of classical music is usually divided into baroque, classical, Romantic, modern, and post-modern eras. New Orleans is where jazz originated in the late nineteenth century, created principally by the descendants of freed African slaves. Jazz evolved from dixieland, ragtime, blues, marches, and other influences, including classical music. Its major historical periods include swing, bebop, and post-bop.
Jazz music is appreciated worldwide. If you are ever traveling and are new to some countries, here are where some of the best jazz clubs are located so that every place you go will be just like home.
Canadian Jazz Clubs
In Westminster, you can go to the Java Jazz Café & Bistro. Live jazz is played served with Filipino cooking, with dishes like kare-kare, milkfish and bangus. Every night there are different artists playing. Times are from Tuesday-Thursday from 12p.m. to 2:30p.m. and 5:30 to 12:00a.m. Friday it’s to 1:00a.m., Saturday 3 p.m. to 1 a.m. and Sunday 5:30 p.m. to midnight. If you want to attend jam sessions, they are each Saturday 3p.m. to 6p.m.
If you are ever in Victoria, go to the Hermann’s Jazz Club on 753 View Street. This club has been around for 25 years. You can enjoy good food and international jazz music from the hottest musicians around.
In Vancouver, you can go to Capones Restaurant & Live Jazz Club. Jazz music is played there every night of the week. The food is excellent food and wine. Some of the dishes are pizzas, pastas, tapas and there are also some signature entrees. The musicians that play here are literally chosen to play there from the area and offer great west coast jazz music and blues. You have to call and book in advance to get a table here.
Cuban Jazz Clubs
If you are heading to Havana, be sure to stop at La Zorra Y La Cueva Jazz Club. Open every day, you can eat, drink, dance and enjoy the best jazz music as only the best of musicians play here. Dress tropical for this club.
Chinese Jazz Clubs
In Bejing, you can go to The Big Easy. Modern jazz music and blues is played there. Ted’s Café plays traditionaljazz on Saturday nights. In Shanghai you can go to the CJW. The CJW is the Cigar Jazz Wine House. It is on the highest floor of the fifty-story Bund Centre. The atmosphere is very modern, eccentric with lava lamps, transparent beaded curtains. The food is traditional western and Chinese fusion.
Israeli Jazz Clubs
In Binyamina, you can go to the milestone. The Milestone is set in a beautiful park inside a Roman fortress. The times are from weekends Thursday to Saturday. The jazz music is played by the best Israeli jazz musicians. Gourmet food is served, and there is also an amphitheatre. If you are in Haifa, go to the Hottentot. Performances are just about every single day. The atmosphere is laid-back, there’s good food, drinks and a gallery.
French Jazz Clubs
I had to save the best clubs for last. French jazz clubs. The French are serious when it comes to jazz music. All kinds of jazz music is played from standard to amateur. There are many, many jazz clubs here. Quite a few American jazz musicians chose to live there permanently or temporarily and have enhanced their lives all around. Here is a couple of the best jazz clubs in France. In Paris 4th, there is Franc Pinot. Those that love swing and bebop music should come here. This club has natural acoustics, and is located in the heart of Paris. Times are from 7p.m. to 9p.m., but it depends on who is playing for the night. In the 15th, there is Jazz Club Lionel Hampton where the best bands and artists play contemporary jazz. If you want to enrich your spirit, go travel to other places to appreciate jazz music.
Music is experienced by individuals in a range of social settings ranging
Music is experienced by individuals in a range of social settings ranging from being alone to attending a large concert. Musical performances take different forms in different cultures and socioeconomic milieus. In Europe and North America, there is often a divide between what types of music are viewed as a “high culture” and “low culture.” “High culture” types of music typically include Western art music such as Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and modern-era symphonies, concertos, and solo works, and are typically heard in formal concerts in concert halls and churches, with the audience sitting quietly in seats.
Other types of music such as jazz, blues, soul, and country are often performed in bars, nightclubs, and theatres, where the audience may be able to drink, dance, and express themselves by cheering. Until the later 20th century, the division between “high” and “low” musical forms was widely accepted as a valid distinction that separated out better quality, more advanced “art music” from the popular styles of music heard in bars and dance halls.
However, in the 1980s and 1990s, musicologists studying this perceived divide between “high” and “low” musical genres argued that this distinction is not based on the musical value or quality of the different types of music. Rather, they argued that this distinction was based largely on the socioeconomic standing or social class of the performers or audience of the different types of music. For example, whereas the audience for Classical symphony concerts typically have above-average incomes, the audience for a Rap concert in an inner-city area may have below-average incomes. Even though the performers, audience, or venue where non-“art” music is performed may have a lower socioeconomic status, the music that is performed, such as blues, rap, punk, funk, or ska may be very complex and sophisticated.
When composers introduce styles of music which break with convention, there can be a strong resistance from academic music experts and popular culture. Late-period Beethoven string quartets, Stravinsky ballet scores, serialism, bebop-era jazz, hip hop, punk rock, and electronica have all been considered non-music by some critics when they were first introduced.
Such themes are examined in the sociology of music. The sociological study of music, sometimes called sociomusicology, is often pursued in departments of sociology, media studies, or music, and is closely related to the field of ethnomusicology.
The great depression ended in 1939, after 10 years of unemployment, and Manhattan’s Radio City Music Hall opened during this decade. “Swing” music, a form of jazz music with dominant instrumentals, which developed in the early 1930s, gained popularity. Big bands such as Benny Goodman and Count Basie had couples swing dancing to their lively tunes. These big bands were popular throughout the 30s and Jazz composer Duke Ellington wrote the popular song; “It Don’t Mean a Thing, If It Ain’t Got That Swing.”
Do you remember your favorite songs of the 1930s? Here are some of the most popular songs from that decade, in alphabetical order.
Popular Songs of the 1930s
Craig Stevens as Peter Gunn
A Very Cool Private Investigator
The character of Peter Gunn made his tv debut in 1958. This series was about a suave and sophisticated private investigator, and was one of the first to feature a PI as the lead character. Other programs were modeled after it, and it helped set the standard for future dramas.
Craig Stevens played Peter Gunn to perfection. He reminds me a lot of Cary Grant, with his perfect hair and polished demeanor.
The series is best known for its iconic music, which was written by Henri Mancini. Almost everyone has heard the classic Peter Gunn theme, even if they had no knowledge of the show itself. The use of modern jazz music was groundbreaking and innovative at the time. These jazz themes were used throughout each episode, which enhanced the appeal of the program. It was a stylish series with a lot of mystery and intrigue. Most dramas are an hour long, but the episodes in this series are just half and hour.
Who is Peter Gunn?
Peter is a wealthy private investigator who lives in an exotic city. We don’t know exactly where he lives, but it’s a waterfront location. He drives sporty vehicles and even has a car phone, something that was unusual in that day.
Peter is a bachelor with a girlfriend named Edie. She’s a singer at a jazz club where he regularly meets his clients.
He’s not a conventional PI with a typical office. However, he does have a reputation for being a hard working, trustworthy man. As a result, he has no trouble attracting clients. Peter charges a fee of $1,000, which doesn’t sound like much now, but was a lot of money in the late 50s and early 60s. On a few occassions he accepts cases out of his area.
He is always impeccably groomed and wears expensive suits and ties.
The Iconic Peter Gunn Theme
More About the Peter Gunn Series
The program made its debut in 1958, and ended three years later. A total of 114 episodes were made. The tv seasons were a lot longer at that time, with 30 or even more episodes being common. Today, most series do not film more than twenty five for an entire season, mainly due to much higher production costs.
Although Craig Stevens had been acting for quite a few years, he didn’t become well known until he portrayed Pete. The series also brought fame to Henri Mancini, who won an Emmy and two Grammy awards for his unique style of music. The Peter Gunn soundtrack was so popular it reached the top spot on the Billboard chart.
TV series today do not have distinctive theme songs. I think that is too bad, as many of the old ones become classics. Mancini’s is probably the most iconic, but there are others that have stood out over the years.
The series was created, written and directed by Blake Edwards, who would achieve even greater fame directing such hits as Breakfast at Tiffany’s and the Pink Panther movies. In fact, he would team up again with Mancini again for those films.
Peter’s girlfriend Edie was played by Lola Albright. She was a singer who regularly worked at the nightclub where Pete would often meet his clients. Edie was so successful that she was able to open her own club. She would have loved to be married to Peter, but he seemed to be a confirmed bachelor. They did have great chemistry and seemed well suited to each other.
He knew several people who were regulars at the club, and had proven to be good sources of information. This often helped him solve some of the toughest cases. He also worked closely with the local policeman, Lieutenant Jacoby.
A few years after the series ended, Blake Edwards wanted to revive it. A movie was made and released in 1967 with Stevens once again in the starring role. However, he had no interest in playing the character again on tv. A new pilot was filmed with Peter Strauss playing Gunn, although it was not picked up by any network.
This is one classic tv series that hasn’t become dated over the years. Peter Gunn set the standard for future private investigators, and he really make the genre popular. Future series such as The Rockford Files and Magnum, PI, would become very successful and are classics today.
Peter Gunn is considered by some to be one of the best PI shows of all time. It has so much going for it, including the tightly woven plots, a great cast and top notch jazz music. I would definitely rate it as a highly entertaining show. I discovered it myself not long ago, as it was being played late at night on one of my local tv networks.
The TNT network will be broadcasting a new version of the series, although no air date has been set yet. It’s going to be directed by Steven Spielberg, but there is no word yet on who any of the actors will be. It will be interesting to see who is cast as Peter Gunn.
Craig Stevens Career
Stevens was born in 1918. He originally was going to become a dentist, but caught the acting bug while taking part in the drama club at university. He took a chance by giving up his studies, but he wanted to pursue a Hollywood career.
Throughout the 1940s and 50s he had steady work in movies, but the roles he was offered were secondary ones. Even so, he was able to earn a comfortable living until he made his mark on television.
Once the Peter Gunn series came to an end, Stevens starred in a British drama Man of the World. This was followed by guest appearances on many tv shows as well as a couple more movies. Stevens also appeared on Broadway, playing Professor Higgins in My Fair Lady. He retired in the late 1980s.
He lived a quiet and private life, and for the most part stayed away from the Hollywood limelight. He was married to actress Alexis Smith for nearly half a century. She died in 1993, and he passed away about seven years later.
Are you aware that how-to books are among the easiest books to write? Yes, that’s right, they really are!
After all, how hard can it be to write about something you already know really well, something that you are passionate about? Heck, you may not even need to do any research! What other kind of author has that luxury?
As I say on my ebook on the subject, I am a firm believer that 99% of people who have specific knowledge of ANY subject, coupled with a passion to share that knowledge with others, are natural how-to authors.
In fact, as I state in the Introduction to my book…
“If you can organize your thoughts enough to explain something to someone, and then write that down in simple step-by-step terms, you too can be a how-to author.”
That’s right. How-to books can be written by anyone who is capable of writing down what they are “speaking” as they explain to someone all about something that is near and dear to their heart.
It really is that simple. And the beauty of writing how-to books is that you already have the knowledge inside of you!
Most how-to books are written by “experts” in a particular subject. The cool part about this is that each and every one of us is an expert in some, or many areas! And that includes you!
YES, YOU ARE An Expert
Really, you are! You possess a unique combination of knowledge and valuable life experience that no one else on this planet possesses. In fact, you are the only one truly qualified to write about your knowledge and experience from your own unique perspective.
And that last phrase — “from your own unique perspective” — is a very important one. It’s important because “how-to” books are all about people sharing their individual unique take on something. And it really doesn’t matter what that something is.
Think about it. What are your big interests and/or activities in life? What’s your favorite hobby, or your preferred sport or leisure activity. What do you excel in at the office? What books and magazines do you seek out? What subjects are guaranteed to grab your attention in any situation, or when depicted in the media? What are you good at – at work and/or at play? On what subjects do friends, family members, and co-workers constantly seek your advice and/or expertise? Do you have valuable life experience to bring to the table?
Now that you’ve thought about it, I bet you’re beginning to realize that you are indeed an “expert” on numerous subjects — aren’t you?
Seriously, whether you’re an avid gardener, a fanatical sports fan, an obsessed collector of “stuff”, a jazz pianist, a weekend carpenter, or a card maker; it doesn’t matter what your subject. YOU ARE AN EXPERT at those things that you love and are good at doing.
VLE Does Count!
Whatever you do, make sure you don’t discount your own personal “valuable life experience”. In fact, VLE is the basis for almost All self-help books. After all, what are self-help books except “how-to” books about how to live life. And in these days of Oprah, Dr. Phil, Chicken Soup Books, and Reality TV, I don’t have to tell you how marketable VLE is!
Winter Park Music Festivals to Sound Off July 1 in Colorado
Winter Park, CO June 7, 2006 — The annual Winter Park Music Festivals kick off July 1st with a month long series of outdoor sonorous sessions from jazz to rock, blues, folk and the headliners: Wide Spread Panic and Shawn Colvin.
The town of Winter Park provides authentic Colorado Rocky Mountain getaways for visitors worldwide. The breathtaking panoramic mountain views, easy access to the Colorado River, and endless surplus of activities and attractions make it a popular vacation destination year round.
Lodging is available for the duration of the concert series at Vacations Inc. This premier Winter Park lodging company offers exquisite condos, private and town homes for any size group. A leader in the industry, Vacations Inc. has been providing Rocky Mountain vacations for over 35 years and is proud to offer its finest accommodations to the public for the Winter Park Music Festivals.
The concert series embarks with the 4th Annual Grand County Blues Festival on July 1 and continues with weekly shows: 3rd Annual Winter Park Folk Festival July 9-10 including Shawn Colvin, Widespread Panic Concert at Winter Park Resort July 22-23, and The Winter Park Jazz Festival July 29-39.
To learn more about Vacations Inc. and the Winter Park Music Festivals please visit the website at www.vacationsinc.com or to book accommodation, please call toll free 800-215-6535.
The Many Styles Of Jazz Music Part 1
The essence of the appeal of Jazz music has expanded and became reinvented from the use of elements found in African drumming, spiritual and hymn music, bluegrass hillbilly music, blues, impressionist, and classical traits to newer sounds. Jazz music became popular from radio and underground clubs that influenced other parts of the world. For instance, Europe’s French Jazz scene created Gypsy Jazz and South America’s Brazilian and Afro-CubanJazz sounds. Not only did make it’s mark on the world, but it also found its way back to its roots through urban contemporary gospel music of percussion as well as brass instruments.
Today the contemporary gospel music uses guitars, keyboard, piano, drums and brass instruments for their sound. One can usually tell during the ballads how Jazz chord harmonies are used in the keyboard and piano. The harmony in Barbershop music like Jazz came from the African American Black gospel church community which use close four part harmony without accompaniment. This particular style of music without accompaniment is known as A capella. The Mills Brothers were popular Jazz musicians who learned how this harmonization in the barbershop owned by their father.
In many Jazz groups such as Manhattan Transfer, New York Voices, Acoustix, Bara Vox, Beach Front, BR6 and more the harmonies are similar to that of barbershop. These harmonies are from the chromatic chordal harmony found in Jazz Music. The group Take 6 has expanded the traditional four part harmonies to six tones. Jazz Music did not stop there , but grew into an array of different styles that produce different aesthetic appeal.
The aesthetic appeal can be found in how each part of the music makes one feel once heard. All the different elements from the lyrical content to the kaleidoscope of colorful harmony to the depth of the mood provides its own ambiance of sound. To give examples:
On the extent to which Jazz has expanded are listed below as new expressions to the music.
Vocalese – From 1952 to 1962 Eddie Jefferson and Jon Hendricks made their mark by using their vocals as a substitute for the music instrument in the exact melody. Meaning, the voice imitated the exact solo of a saxophonist solo. It was not wide accepted until the musicians above made it popular.
Cool Jazz– From the latter 1940’s and 1950’s a softer more gentle style of Jazz of both bop and swing with arranged harmonies that are present in Jazz ballads today.
Hard Bop-From the middle of 1950’s the church’s spiritual and gospel roots of African style returned to the Jazzmusic which assisted in the making of Rhythm and Blues. One example of this music is Davis’ work titled “Walkin”.
Mainstream- From the 1950’s era, Jazz improvisation changed from single line melodic ornamentation to chordal which appeared again as a loose form of Jazz music in the later part of the 1970’s and 1980’s. This style was influenced by the cool, classical, and hard bop Jazz styles.
Geoff Emerick was only sixteen years old when he worked on the Beatles’ first-ever recording session. Only a few years later he would play an important part in shaping the fab four’s musical direction.
At the age of fifteen, Geoff Emerick landed a job as an assistant engineer at Abbey Road Studios in London. Emerick, the son of a butcher, had developed a keen interest in music from an early age, despite the fact that none of his family members possessed any particular musical talent.
As a young child, Emerick was capable of picking out simple tunes he had heard on the radio and playing them solely by ear on his uncle’s piano.
“I have no explanation for how I was able to do it; for some reason I just knew where the notes fell, and it was only a matter of going from one note to another to make up the tune,” Emerick said in his book “Here, There and Everywhere – My Life Recording the Music of The Beatles.”
Emerick discovered his grandmother’s collection of classical and operatic records at the age of six, and played these records endlessly. He started to mimic the role of a conductor when listening to the records – using a pencil as a baton.
“The music would not only evoke emotions in me – joy, sadness, longing, excitement – but also conjure up images in my mind,” Emerick said.
When his dad George presented him with his first radio, young Geoff began listening to skiffle and rock ‘n’ roll music. Listening to contemporary music, he said, was like a breath of fresh air. He found himself drawn more and more to pop records, but at the same time retained his appreciation for classical and operatic music.
“Somehow my musical tastes were broadening, not just shifting,” he said.
A FUTURE TO CONSIDER
As he grew older, Emerick had to start thinking about his future. He was however reluctant to follow in his father’s footsteps (“there was no way I could face a lifetime of chopping up raw meat.”) In 1960’s England, pupils completed school at the age of 15. Although his parents suggested he should pursue a career in architecture, Emerick lost interest as soon as he discovered he would have to go to university to do so.
After some deliberation, Emerick finally decided that he wanted to be involved in the creation of music.
“I realized that I was never going to get the proper training to become a professional composer or an accomplished musician, but I wanted to somehow make a contribution,” he said.
Emerick sent application letters to record companies in London, but they either turned him down or never replied. His school’s career counselor, Mr. Barlow, tried to convince him that a job in the post office installing telephones was the right thing for him. But Emerick was headstrong and made it clear that it was music he wanted to do. A few months later, when Emerick was beginning to lose hope, Mr. Barlow called him into his office. There was an entry-level vacancy at EMI’s Abbey Road Studios and a job interview had been arranged.
Playing Bass Guitar Solos
In 1965 British rock group, The Who released a song called My Generation. Apart from its claim to fame as a rock anthem it also contains the most instantly recognizable bass guitar solo in rock and roll. This iconic solo by John Entwistle is typical of the bass solo modeled on similar solo breaks played on double bass and bass guitar in jazzmusic. This type of bass guitar solo is in the form of a question and answer sequence often found in blues music. The Who’s solo also imitates jazz bass solos in that it is played without other instruments behind it. In jazz such solos are played unaccompanied because other instruments tend to drown out the bass.
There have been many bass solos included in rock, funk and jazz but only in pop music has the bass guitar solo stood alone as a piece of music. The first pop musician in England to own and play an electric bass guitar was Jet Harris. He found fame and fortune with The Shadows, Cliff Richard’s backing group who were trying to make their own way in pop music as a vocal and instrumental group. Harris played on the band’s early instrumental hits featuring the lead guitar of Hank Marvin but decided to try to make it as a soloist like America’s Duane Eddy.
Jet Harris’ first big hit as a solo guitarist was in 1962 with his rendition of the 1940 song Besame Mucho. The throbbing notes of the six string bass turned a poignant love song into an instrumental work full of menace. Probably inspired by their former band member’s success, The Shadows released another six string bass solo called Stingray as a single in 1965.
Meanwhile in America in 1963 a young composer and arranger named Jack Nitzsche made a lush orchestral single called The Lonely Surfer. The orchestra was merely the backdrop for a simple melody played on the bass guitar. The Lonely Surfer never climbed higher than number thirty-nine on the charts, but that is pretty good for a bass guitar solo!
These days the bass guitar is an important part of any band. It was actually born in the nineteen thirties but met with very little success until it was adopted by the early rock and roll groups of the nineteen fifties. The bass guitar is of course descended from the double bass which has always been a solo instrument in orchestral music and was often used for solo work in jazz.
If you want to play bass guitar, you might want to consider learning to play a regular guitar first. It is not absolutely necessary to become a lead or rhythm guitarist before playing bass but it seems to be the way that bass guitar players come into the world. To begin your career as a bass guitarist you can try playing through the bass tabs available on the internet. There are also some lessons available for free plus you can view heaps of bass solos and bass guitar lessons on the various video sites.
Once you have some practice on the bass guitar under your belt there is blinding variety of bass guitar techniques to try before you begin seriously to play solos. You can employ a wide range of plectrums or choose from the many techniques which involve plucking, popping and slapping the bass with the fingers. To some people this might sound like hard work but hopefully you will regard it as a labor of love.
Fortunately for jazz lovers, jazz is one of the more accessible music genres on the Internet. Since much of the music is now free of copyright issues or was created with a spirit of sharing and artistic freedom, there are plenty of free jazz downloads available online. Follow these steps to download some excellent jazz for free.
- Get some samples. One of the fastest ways to get free jazz downloads is by finding samples of albums that are sold online. In many cases, you have an option to download an MP3 file of some of the songs that are on the album. Check CD sales sites such as Amazon.com or Download.com to find some high quality free downloads of jazz music.
- Use All About Jazz. All About Jazz is a jazz-focused website that, in addition to many other things, offers free downloads of select songs and albums. Downloading from All About Jazz is easy, free and painless, so head to AllAboutJazz.com to get some free jazz downloads.
- Download from the Internet Archive. The Internet Archive, at archive.org, is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to making knowledge and culture available to anyone for free. Among the many pieces of media at the Archive site are full-length jazz concerts that are available for free download. Head to the Internet Archive, browse the concerts and make a few clicks to get some great jazz downloads.
- Search specific artists. If you want to find jazz downloads of specific artists search for dedicated websites of these artists to get some free samples. For more contemporary artists, use popular promotion websites such as MySpace.com where musicians often place three of four songs for you to download. Spend some time on MySpace finding artists that are connected to each other to get some free music.
The Importance of Buddy Holly in Music History
So what’s the big deal about Buddy Holly? If you’re under 50 you may have wondered why his name gets touted so much in certain circles, especially those of older rock ‘n rollers. You may have wondered why this goofy looking guy in glasses seemed to attract such a following in an era when much sexier entertainers like Elvis Presley were on the rise. You may have wondered why the guy who wrote Peggy Sue gets so many accolades for such a simplistic and even amateurish-sounding song. In fact, you may have even wondered if Buddy Holly would be remembered much at all had he not died young in a plane crash.
Rest assured, he would.
There are plenty of lengthy biographies of Buddy Holly readily available but in this article we’ll simply sum up some key points about the man which reveal his amazing talents, the reason he is so widely respected, and his significance to music history.
Buddy Holly’s World
Perhaps the biggest reason for losing sight of Buddy’s accomplishments today is that we take the modern music scene, which Holly helped to create, for granted. Consider the world Buddy Holly grew up in. Big band music, romantic crooners, and show music were the most popular. Country music and bluegrass was the norm in many regions of the country. Even classical music was significantly popular. Jazz, Boogie Woogie, and Doo-Wop, musical styles originated by black musicians and the true origins of rock ‘n roll, were relatively popular but also limited and in many ways restricted in the commercial market. This was the musical world into which Buddy Holly came of age, and the musical world Buddy Holly would change.
Buddy Holly Was A Pioneer and an Innovator
Buddy Holly didn’t invent rock ‘n roll, what Buddy did was play a key role in establishing the roots of rock ‘n roll as a widespread cultural phenomenon, while at the same time paving the way for all kinds of popular music in the future. Buddy Holly wasn’t just about rock ‘n roll he was about new and remarkable approaches to popular music artistry. Buddy created styles, methods, procedures and even a culture of relating music to audiences that had simply never been done or even conceived of before, and yet, for us today, seem so obvious that it’s difficult to imagine that someone ever had to pioneer these things.
Buddy Holly Wrote Much of His Own Music
Writing your own music was not the norm for popular entertainers before Buddy Holly. He was a singer/songwriter before that concept really even existed. Most popular entertainers were, just that, entertainers. Some of them were exceptionally good at it, even great, but they didn’t write the music. They were stage performers, charming personalities and beautiful singers. Buddy was different. He was a songwriter and music creator first., At the same time however he was quite an impressive stage performer at that, filled with energy and a charismatic quirkiness: Yet what truly lives on today is the wealth of music he wrote and produced, as well as how he went about it.
Buddy Holly Was Involved in Producing His Recordings
If writing your own songs was a rarity in the pop music world of the 1950’s producing your own recordings was as foreign a concept as walking on the moon. This just wasn’t done. No one had thought to do it much less had the audacity to suggest it. Not only did Buddy Holly suggest it, he demanded it, slowly getting more involved in the production until he was at times in charge of it. Then he excelled at it, advancing new recording techniques and methods for laying down tracks that would forever change the industry.
Buddy Holly and the Standard Rock n’ Roll Band
Although there are plenty of variations, we take for granted today that any rock band will consist of a at least two guitars, a bass guitar, and drums. It just goes without saying, but it didn’t go without saying in the 1950’s. Again, big band music was still popular at the time and early rock ‘n roll performers often played with a big band. Buddy Holly on the other hand, leading his three-man band the Crickets while playing his Fender Stratocaster, an instrument he popularized, basically made standard the free-styling rock n’ roll band ensemble as we know it today and have known it for 50 years.
Buddy Holly’s Voice
Before Buddy Holly most male popular performers were crooners. Men with deep, velvety voices and impressive timbres. Think Bing Crosby and Perry Como. Some of the early rock ‘n roll singers and younger pop singers of Buddy’s generation were the same, possessing deep and resonant voices of great musical quality and range; singers such as Elvis Presley and Paul Anka for example. Buddy Holly however had a shallower and more untrained sounding voice, a more natural sound, and sometimes an even peculiar, fun and humorous sound, depending on how he used it. Most notable was his trademark hiccup heard in so many songs, something which even the best Buddy Holly imitators cannot duplicate and rarely even try. Buddy’s natural and individualistic singing style paved the way for countless popular singers to follow, singers not known for singing skill as much as absolute distinctiveness, i.e. Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, and Mick Jagger, all of whom have spoken of Buddy Holly’s influence on their careers.
Buddy Holly’s Essential Influence on Future Bands
Buddy was especially popular in England and toured there. In a few of those English audiences future members of The Beatles and The Rolling Stones could be found, listening and watching with amazement, learning all they could. They were consequently inspired to become song writers themselves and engaging performers. They were also motivated to be themselves instead of trying to fit some commercial mold of teen idols. John Lennon once commented how he used to think he could never perform on stage wearing glasses until he considered that Buddy did it, and without shame or reservation. Somehow Buddy could even make a nerdy style come off as cool and hip. In later years both the Beatles and the Stones readily and eagerly spoke of the role Buddy Holly had in their development as musicians. Paul McCartney once narrated a great documentary on Holly and also secured ownership rights to all of his songs.
Oft Overlooked Facts About Buddy Holly
1. Buddy Holly didn’t just write and sing Peggy Sue. Unfortunately that’s the only song many today even know about. Buddy Holly wrote some 40 songs and was prolific in performing and recording many more, covering quite a range of styles. Paul Anka also wrote a song specifically for Buddy (“It Doesn’t Matter Anymore”) which he recorded not long before his death.
2. Buddy Holly’s roots were actually in country music.
3. Buddy Holly didn’t grow up in the middle of a busy music or culture scene such as New York. Instead he grew up in a small Texas farm town, probably about the last place on earth one would have looked for a great new talent in the popular music industry. What’s more, he didn’t immediately abandon his small town roots once he started becoming successful. He was in his hometown of Lubbock, Texas often and continued to record music at the recording studio of Norman Petty in the even smaller town of Clovis, New Mexico. All of Buddy’s famous early recordings were made there.
4. In the months before he died, and unfortunately we have to break down Buddy’s career into months, he began to wander from rock ‘n roll and even question it’s future. Although his rock ‘n roll music was what he was known for his musical interests ranged much further. In fact, he, like the Beatles years later, became restless with the crazed pop music scene and began to look for new creative outlets. Shortly before his death he began recording more melodic songs with a full orchestra in a New York studio, songs such as “True Love Way’s, Buddy’s most romantic song.
Two Short Years
The most remarkable fact of all is that Buddy Holly accomplished all that he did while a very young man and in a brief career lasting only 2 years. It captives the mind to try to imagine what Buddy might have done had he lived longer than age 22. Instead, with that fateful plane crash on that cruel February night, although the music didn’t exactly die with Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and J.P. Richardson, the American music scene was temporarily paralyzed and the British invasion took over, all the while admittedly inspired by Buddy Holly.
If Buddy Holly is a stranger to you, do yourself a favor and check out some of the many recordings beyond Peggy Sue. You’ll find music that is creative, fun, stirring, sentimental, and timeless.