The Evolution of Jazz; 26; Count Basie, Part Two
Rodney Richardson and Kansas City 7.
This evolve other places in the in the work of Benny Goodman who was always the intelligent absorber of his first records with Teddy Wilson. He plays a kind of refinement of the Dixieland style. He shows the transition to the style which then dominates his sextet performances. And often the latter the sextet performances where they see himself. With out in the great Charlie Christian and guitar as in the Royal Garden blues it was played in a previous lecture. Here is a pic a red showing the transition to that kind of small band jazz with Goodman on a clarinet. Lionel Hampton on vibraphone but he shoots on drums Teddy Wilson piano and John Kirby on bass.
I am. With regard to the Benny Goodman trio It was one of the first instances of a practice that grew during the 30s hiring by white bands of individual negro Jasmine Goodman added Lionel Hampton the make us trio a quartet then later Kuti Williams said Catholic for a while Charlie Christian. Featured Billie Holiday for a time. Roy Eldridge played with Cooper and Shaw and there were other examples. MC small bands like Joe Sullivan's in New York played bridge club
until contemporary times when mixed small bands are the rule rather than the exception. Bands today are still apt to be all white or Negro but there aren't any exceptions there too. And eventually I believe they'll be no such thing as Negro or white large or small units. The terms just won't be used anymore and that will be a good thing in every way. Going back to the Goodman trio it illustrated as anything else Dan said Al Goodman in those days was an intelligent absorber of new trends in jazz. The trail started at an informal session at a party and vocalist Mildred Bailey's house in 1935 and so pleased with the participants that Goodman hired Wilson and the trio became an entity within the goodman band. Well I was born in 1912 in Austin Texas the same year of birth of Art Tatum as a matter of fact. He began studying music under his parents to tillage and became seriously interested in the piano while a student at Tuskegee University. His first professional jobs were with local bands in Detroit and he began to attract the attention and
respect of the jazz fraternity. When he moved to Chicago to work with orchestras like Jimi Noons and many concerts he was with Benny Goodman from 36 to 39. And since then has had his own large and small units has been a soloist both in this country and abroad and a teacher as Barry Ulanov writes of him most directly influenced by Earl Hines the lineaments of whose style can be found in one Wilson performance after another 29 The last was original in his elaboration of Piano Jazz as a soloist became adept at stringing together ballad phrases with fresh counter melodies and fill in phrases and a steadily moving beat. He submitted himself to a traditional keyboard disciplines and later combined his serious piano studies or rather his classical piano studies. I think the word serious there is. In voluntarily in videos to jazz. He combined his classical piano studies in his jazz playing experience to become one of the finest teachers jazz is ever known both privately. And
at such institutions at the as the Juilliard School of Music. And the Manhattan School of Music. Here is another example of the way and the use of the jazz language had changed. Jelly Roll Morton trio recording of 1927 with Johnny Dodds clarinet and baby Dods drums then a Goodman trio in 1935 with Gene Cooper and Teddy Wilson. This comparison may I point out again is not meant nor are any I've used during the chorus or shall in the future it is not meant to indicate that the earlier Morton trio is worse musically than the goodman. Just as one does not say Bach is worse than bar talk because the musical language. Has developed in the centuries between them. So one cannot say Dods is worse than good when they are utilizing different jazz idioms of different periods of time for different needs. There could have been no Goodman trio were it not for the foundation laid by men like Johnny does. But jazz would not have changed
after Dodds had it not been for a man like Goodman and Wilson. If it seems fatuous to compare the brief periods between jazz in New Orleans and jazz in 1035 with the centuries of development between Bach and bar talk remember that jazz evolved. An unprecedentedly rapid rate with of course much of its material already formed by centuries of evolution both in Europe and Africa and in the period since the 17th century in the United States which was demonstrated at some length in the early electorates and rarely if ever before in the history of music had there been this kind of meeting between a highly developed folk music base. And a highly developed heterogeneous in the urban context head on sort of explosive meeting that occurred in this country during the late 19th and early 20th centuries beginning in the south then spreading an interweaving with other musical strains all over the country. It influenced of course also by as the social history of both Negro and whites which is important
in the rapidity of the growth of jazz. And we've covered that in part as well. In some respects the musical growth was too rapid so that there have been times in the history of jazz which change was lauded just as change without regard for quality or without regard for whether a particular kind of innovation was indeed evolution or just a trick. Dead end and there still remains a cultism among jazz aficionados who have not been able to grasp the full perspective and repetitive of the evolution of jazz. Some who are relatively unaware of its roots. And on the other hand those who believe it to have degenerated after reaching New Orleans and Chicago. But as of now the period of consolidation is setting in as jazz prepares for yet another stage a stage I'll cover in the last lecture and it is possible to look back on its evolutionary examples without having to assume a polemical stance without having to say as some do that there is no jazz of value. There was no jazz or value after the
nine hundred twenty one or your early 1930s. Or as some of the Jazz began. Let's say in 1949. So here is the Jelly Roll Morton trio with Johnny and baby dogs in a 1927 recording. Mr. Jelly Lloyd.
None of the trio performance with Benny Goodman and clarinet Gene Krupa are on drums and Teddy Wilson piano an element of Wilson style incidentally at least the practice he uses quite frequently as those on a totem is the tenth the bass beat based on the chord of that interval. And like Tatum he is particularly adept in its fluid usage in the jazz idiom. You know then it is the Benny Goodman trio of 1935 and someday sweetheart.
Lionel Hampton's addition to the Goodman trio. Brings to mind the fact that during the 30s and early 40s some of the best small jazz recordings small band jazz were made by groups of musicians he assembled for recording purposes only from the later negro bands like Bay scene Ellington and Callaway and from white bands like Goodmans. And next weeks lecture will feature some of those recordings. But the fact that these small recording outfits existed as part of the experimental laboratories with small band jazz brings to mind other small groups that served as experimental sites. As Eddie Finkelstein writes that among them were Jimmy Newman's apex club band with Errol Hines back in the late 20s in the Benny Goodman trio quartet Quintet and Sexton the various groups that Teddy Wilson Billie Holiday and Frankie Newton gathered for recording purposes. Many of these groups and Sessions did not produce a music of absolute lasting power
yet they play the music far above the commercial music being heard at the time. And at the same time avoided the repetition of Dixieland patterns. They help break new ground as did small groups working in clubs for that matter all over the country. They often suffered from excessive harmonics weakness over dependence on riffing for structure or from instrumental brilliance for its own sake. This was a necessary avenue to progress in a way for the job they tackled was the exploration of the full tonal possibilities of the instrument. Something that has been a major concern for Jasmine since the beginning of the Foreign and the ABS absorption of the popular ballad. When this was accomplished as it is in much modern jazz rituals today for its own sake could be thrown away leaving only skill in execution and the popular ballad at least and bought was discarded leaving only the new harmonic system and the ideas that developed out of it will go into more details on that score in the lectures on Bob and the subsequent school as it's called. It's also well to remember that
throughout this period the Blues were being played both by small and large units and the Blues were still quite as topical as they had been in the 19th century and in the early years of the 20th and often mildly sardonic as in this George Frazier lyric played by the Count Basie band.
Why. You have been listening to the evolution of jazz. I recorded series prepared and produced by Nat Hentoff under the auspices of Northeastern University and presented by the
- The Evolution of Jazz
- Episode Number
- Count Basie, Part Two
- Producing Organization
- WGBH Educational Foundation
- Contributing Organization
- University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
- AAPB ID
- This program focuses on the music of Count Basie.
- Jazz historian Nat Hentoff presents a series that traces the history of jazz, from its musical and cultural roots to its contemporary forms. "The Evolution of Jazz" was originally broadcast from WGBH in 1953-1954, and was re-broadcast by the National Educational Radio Network in 1964.
- Asset type
- Jazz musicians--United States--Biography.
- Media type
Host: Hentoff, Nat
Producer: Hentoff, Nat
Producing Organization: WGBH Educational Foundation
- AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 55-32-26 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
If you have a copy of this asset and would like us to add it to our catalog, please contact us.
- Chicago: “The Evolution of Jazz; 26; Count Basie, Part Two,” 1954-05-07, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed September 20, 2021, http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-610vv20f.
- MLA: “The Evolution of Jazz; 26; Count Basie, Part Two.” 1954-05-07. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. September 20, 2021. <http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-610vv20f>.
- APA: The Evolution of Jazz; 26; Count Basie, Part Two. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-610vv20f