Monday, March 2, 2015

Quincy Davis' Tip of the Week

Quincy Davis, who currently teaches Jazz drums over at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, MB has been posting his "Tip of the week" series over at YouTube.com, featuring some very important, useful and very well-articulated concepts:











Thursday, February 26, 2015

More Rational Funk...

A few more episodes of Dave King's series "Rational Funk"...











Monday, February 23, 2015

The Monday Morning Paradiddle















Well I'm back in the saddle and well rested now after some solid time sitting on the beach in Mexico for the past week. Fortunately while I was gone my Four on the Floor operatives still found the time to scour the interweb for these random bits now presented before you. So please enjoy!

- My friend Matt Wilson recently toured Canada, playing Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal. Peter Hum over at jazzblog.ca contributed these nice articles about Wilson:

http://ottawacitizen.com/entertainment/local-arts/matt-wilson-on-finding-consolation-in-jazz

http://ottawacitizen.com/entertainment/music/jazzblog/a-half-dozen-matt-wilson-cds-reviewed

I'd also add Matt Wilson's album "Humidity" to that list. It's one of my all-time favorites.





















- I posted this before but here's the tracks from my latest offering Trio3 YVR:

https://soundcloud.com/jon-mccaslin/sets/trio3-yvr



Some people have inquired about where they can find this album. It's only available for digital download (and for free!) and I have no plans to press any CD (or vinyl!) copies. So please enjoy while it's up on Soundcloud.

I am, however, currently compiling a book of my tunes due to "popular" demand. Sort of a Realbook type of thing, but containing all my original compositions (and with the right changes! haha)





















- Here's an article from the archives on Elvin Jones entitled"A Walk in the Park" from The New Yorker circa. 1968:

http://www.bangthedrumschool.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/ElvinJones.WalkToParl.1968.pdf

Thanks to Adam Nussbaum for passing this along.


- Leo Sidran interviews Bill Stewart over at his blog, The Third Story:

http://www.third-story.com/episodes/2015/2/4/episode-24-bill-stewart


- Wallace Roney shares his perspective on many of the great Jazz drummers over at the Snapshots Foundation:

http://www.snapshotsfoundation.com/index.php/articles/135-wallace-roney-interview


- Here's Kenny Washington vs. Joe Farnsworth in a good, old-fashioned Gretsch-Drum-Night-at-Birdland style drum battle:

https://socialcam.com/videos/Y1AlQWxo?autostart=true&no_fb_log=true#_=_


- Here's a great link to some different manuscript templates you can download and print off (for those of us who still write music by hand!):

http://www.apassion4jazz.net/manuscript-paper.html


- Gregory Hutchinson has some video drum lessons coming our way. Here's a preview!




- Thank you to Marvin Bugalu Smith for sharing this inspiring footage of some killing drummers, playing in the Paris Metro:



I got a chuckle out of the old guy who gets up and leaves because the drumming is "disturbing" his reading his newspaper haha.


- And speaking of West African drumming here's Curtis Nowosad, originally from Winnipeg, now studying at the Manhattan School of Music (and a student of John Riley's) playing his transcription of Senegalese drumming Master Doudou N'Diaye Rose's "Cheikh Anta Diop" from the acclaimed album "Djabote:



Here's a few words from Curtis about this transcription:

"This music has been very influential to me since it was introduced to me by Taylor Eigsti in 2012. I was immediately struck by the power and intensity of the rhythm, and the total synchronicity of such a large ensemble, especially when seeing Doudou and his ensemble (mostly if not all family members) on video. I attended the Betty Carter Jazz Ahead workshop at the Kennedy Center in 2013 & 2014 and one thing that is unique about that program is that every day begins with a listening session led by a different faculty member, and both Marc Cary and Jason Moran played this for the group, adding to my resolve to try to really internalize the music and begin adapting it to drum set. I also had a few great conversations with Tarus Mateen about Doudou and other Senegalese musicians, as he used to live in Senegal and played with many of these musicians. Cheikh Anta Diop (named after the great Senegalese historian and anthropologist) is my favorite track from his album Djabote (which was significantly recorded on Gorée Island in 1991), so I began messing around with learning it, but it was John Riley who really pushed me to finish it and present it to the other drummers at MSM in the spring. It is really incredible how relentless the rhythms are and how they interlock. When you start adding Doudou's solo line over top of the drum ensemble ostinato, there are some very cool polyrhythms that start happening, such a 5/2, 4/3, and 3/2. It is really helpful to hear a rhythm like 5/2 in a completely organic, non-academic sort of way; really hearing it instead of intellectualizing it. The more I study it the more I see the similarities between Sabar and various African Diasporic traditions, such as Brazilian (playing with one hand and one stick as on a repique), Cuban (many phrases could be transplanted and would fit directly in clave), and other Caribbean and American styles, the rhythms just manifest themselves differently. I'm glad that people have taken the time to check out the video, and I hope someone is inspired to check out the master himself. Despite the many hours I've spent listening to this music, I'm still dealing on a pretty surface level so I welcome any and all feedback and suggestions for other African traditions to check out!"

If you don't already own this album, get it! I first heard this around 1995 and it changed my life.

Curtis also has a new album coming out on the Cellar Live label in March, I believe, so be sure to check that out once it hits the shelves.


- Here's Steve Smith doing his thing at the recent NAMM 2015 trade show:




- And here's New Orleans drumming master Johnny Vidacovich demonstrating some different ways of playing 2 against 3 on the drums:




- What am I listening to/reading these days?


Christopher Smith - "Mel Lewis: The View From the Back of The Band"

Maria Judge - "Jake Hanna: The Rhythm and Wit of a Swinging Jazz Drummer"

Terry O"Mahoney - "Motivic Drum Soloing"

Todd Bishop - "Brazilian Drumming"

Myriad 3 "Tell " - Ernesto Cervini (drums)

Jerrold Dubyk "The Maverick"- Jesse Cahill (drums)

The Herbie Nichols Project "Strange City" - Matt Wilson (drums)

Cannonball Adderley "Things Are Getting Better" - Art Blakey (drums), Milt Jackson (vibraphone)

John Coltrane & Don Cherry "The Avant Garde"- Ed Blackwell (drums)

Mel Lewis  "...and Friends" - Mel Lewis (drums)


- And today's Last Word goes to whomever came up with this useful list of things to think about:


Thursday, February 19, 2015

And Now a Special Message from Buddy Rich...




And just so you know that this guy knows what he's talking about (!) here's Buddy Rich from the Lenny Bruce Show circa. 1959:



Monday, February 16, 2015

The Tree-Two New Orleans Clave

I've been checking out Stanton Moore's DVDs and such lately and really dig his breakdown of traditional and contemporary New Orleans Second Line grooves. In particular his use of sticking patterns on the snare drum that use both doubles and single strokes really loosen up the groove.

I've been messing around with these two variations and found them to be very practical in my own playing.

Here's the basic version, with the accents based on a 3-2 Son Clave:










And here's a variation with a slightly different accent pattern that uses a 3-2 Brazilian/Bossa Nova Clave:











Make sure to really emphasize the accents.

And thanks to kind people over at LP Percussion, here's Stanton Moore demonstrating a few more groovy ideas from the Crescent City:

Monday, February 9, 2015

Great Drummers

Thank you to Mike Clark for passing along these nifty compilations: