Profiling The Cool: Lester Young and the Language of Jazz

The first percussive patterns I was taught at the age of fourteen stemmed from the sphere of the Jazz world, and I imagine it was a similar path for every other percussionist even on a level where it is not made clear, it would be difficult not to find influences in other musical forms that didn’t originally stem from Jazz. Being brought up on a diet of modern music in the family I was never subjected to Jazz, nor was it explored in depth at school; it was purely for practice, a practice in where I did not learn about the musician behind the tubs’, I had incorporated what I had heard here into my style of playing moving on to joining metal and punk acts.
It wasn’t until later in life that I begun opening this particular world to my ears but with already trained ears I always pick out the percussion section first; so when I discovered the works of
Art Blakey, Bernard Purdie and Kenny Clarke, Clarke who had pioneered the use of signature swing in be-bop, had I begun to truly understand their importance and innovative practices. The amount of appreciation gained through just listening has lead me on a passionate journey of discovery and those names above are just a few that offered great influence and artistry that go beyond the basic patterns in which were dominant in the earlier styles of Jazz music, particularly swing – it became necessary break these patterns and open up new possibilities and explore deeper creativity.

During my auto-didactic study of Jazz and its surrounding literature, there exists a language, a language that has sparked a curiosity in uncovering its roots, and although the tune has been sung to some degree (thank you to the 1996 study by Joel Dinerstein) I wanted to revisit this and reinforce the credit to a one, Lester Young – a name who is lost amongst the behemoths of Jazz.

To which we begin Profiling the Cool.

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Part Timer of the Year, diamonds in the rough of 2018

Thank you to Avalon Emerson and the creative folks behind the simple but inclusive idea of celebrating yearly lists by including a direct path to the music available in the digital medium, on the always fantastic and never shunned, Bandcamp.

Yearly lists often rarely give full navigation to purchasable content, with compilers often neglecting this in their drunk-off-own-ego vocalisation parade, but here we see that simple connection made.

Without further adieu please find a selection of twenty musics for your embrace.

Remembering Pinochet: Five Selected Voices

As the world’s political scale tips towards the right, we are beginning to welcome in politicians who are increasingly conservative and regressive in their policies and viewpoints. Recent voting appears to portray a certain desperation or fear that are built alongside  possible failings or a lack of a strong voice to build a succinct path to a well grounded ideology in left leaning parties, something we are seeing across the political landscape of the world. Of course you cannot generalise, it is our democratic right to vote for who we wish, but the recent successes don’t seem to add up in any logical way. Elections held in Colombia and Brazil are examples of right wing representatives that have won the majority, with Brazil being the most recent. I have mentioned previously about the rise of populism, in which some additional political analysis suggests a fall of populism, but this now doesn’t seem the case. Bolsonaro, the newly elected far right president-elect for Brazil will be called in to power on the 1st of January in place of Michel Temer (who entered office with rather hard-line austerity measures, replacing Dilma as the Centre-Left – Workers Party after her trial for impeachment), who now leaves with an incredibly low approval rating through allegations of corruption and appearing two times in court under impeachment, all with the unwillingness to step-down or give up power. Failure to relent or control measures have allowed the voice of a far-right politician to appeal to the mass populace’s broad anger for the current ‘corrupt politics’ and the allegations that surrounded their failings.

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This Year in PAN

photo by. Jasper Spicero

PAN’s oeuvre is a well curated collection of the most audibly progressive and often visually challenging artists of present. PAN’s curation spans from a techno-Gothic style collection of cinematic soundscapes, to playful synthesis and indulgent machine music, often with an important message embedded in it’s creation. Two thousand and eighteen has not been any different, and it has been certainly one of the most interesting years for music; progression has been made within the industry for pushing women and LGBTQ communities closer to recognition for their work, an area dominated primarily by straight males, and this is evident this year in PAN’s assemblage of artists, we are challenging the simplistic and narrow minded figures that present gender and sexuality as something binary, something that the authorities need to have to define us.

Experimentation has been at it’s most highest in recent years, the fluidity of personas that challenge gender and the communities surrounding them are continuing to combine performance and sound, and are being presented across some of the most important venues across the UK, with the live performances that follow, these are being attended to in increasing numbers. We still have a long way to go, and recent political shifts have created a vast chasm of regression that has begun to swallow progress made, resulting in negative environments, a loss of personal identity and true expression that are true to the self. We must use all mediums of art to project and sharpen our perspective in these times of struggle in however we feel creates the most impact socially and politically.


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GNOD R+D vol.3

If Craig Leon had done psychedelic gothic drone that drew from Mancunian Punk – it would of been this. GNOD R+D (Chris Haslam and Paddy Shine)  is a shoot off from the sporadically based collection of collaborating musicians and purveyors of grinding sounds drowning in acidic drones and chains – GNOD.

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Your Own Self

Garrett List’s 1972 release ‘Your Own Self’ comes at a time of new age composition and it’s rise throughout the 1970s; setting the pace as a minimalist transcendental changing piece, whilst following the experimental phases of music throughout the 1960s.

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