The Anatomy of Improvisation (World Record Club T 526)

Having been burned a couple times by The World Record Club Limited, I tend to steer clear of their oft-seen releases. This is harder to do than you might think because WRC had the best art department of any (semi) budget label I know and when I buy stuff that I have no idea about, it is to the art direction I look. Today, I made an exception and I’m glad I did: This bold sleeve has the exhilarating immediate post-bebop jazz within to back up its graphically propulsive energy.

The late 50s (?) collection of late 40s to mid 50s jazz biggies was compiled as a sort of companion to Leonard Feather‘s tome The Book of Jazz. And it is from a chapter on improvisation that liner note writer Alun Morgan gets down to the nitty-gritty, citing Feather’s book’s transcriptions of parts of the solos in these songs to demonstrate how certain improvised notes “when superimposed over the orthodox chord, give an unexpected yet wholly satisfying effect.” He also explains how transcription can only go so far: “Examining the music aurally, [Coleman Hawkins’] work possesses jazz qualities which cannot be transcribed to stave lines.”  He goes on, “Comparison with the score, however, gives new insights into the work of these remarkable and accomplished musicians.” Great stuff.

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Published in: on May 28, 2011 at 1:25 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I just picked this up today. I have not played it yet but I am sure it was a good find. Payed a whole dollar for it.

  2. I think you did well, sir.

    Though I’m interested you found it for a dollar, suggesting you got this British issue in the States?


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