JD on the Box II

Sunday, October 26, 2003
Skipped market for the first time yesterday... stayed home sick. But practice time has gotten better now that baseball's over.

Brought back High Level Hornpipe, with a new perspective... doing more with the "rise and fall" of the tune than just variations... there's a bit more of how contest fiddlers handle things like Clarinet Polka... the melody is a framework. The left hand contributes directly to the rise and fall and isn't as locked in to a pattern.

Four-to-the-bar swing stuff is getting more consistent too... "If I Had You", "Sunny Side of the Street" (finally), others. Errol Garner's early stuff has been a big influence, although he got into some rhythmic stereotypes in the melody that are annoying to listen to (this seemed to decline in later recordings). The tune is a framework.

Villa-Lobos Choro #1 and Joplin's New Rag were both heavy practice items, but both remain difficult. I'm looking forward to nailing down a new set of rags this winter. Not much classical the past few weeks. Still listening to Matteo's tunes nearly every day, picking up a few of them playing-while-listening, but without seeing them I don't think I retain them as well... need to map out themes & structure on paper in order to really get it, I think. Found a score for "Palomita Blanca" at TodoTango and it's a great tune... I need to work it for awhile to personalize it.

Reading has been Kenny Hall's tunebook, Nat Cole biography. Really enjoying watching DVDs of older musicians.