ISSUES IN JAZZ: A LISTENING AND STUDY CHART
TITLE OF PIECE Dr. Jekyll COMPOSER: Jackie McLean STYLE/S: LEADER: Miles Davis Hard Bop IMPORTANT SOLOISTS: Miles, Trane, Cannonball, Paul Chambers, Philly Joe Jones
FUNCTION OR PURPOSE: Listening / Recording
IMPORTANT DATE/S: Recorded on April 3, 1958
TRACK FORM: TIMINGS/ NUMBERS INTRO
OFTEN SET BY THE FORM HEAD BRIDGE SOLOS SOLI TUTTI-SHOUT OUT-CODA
MAJOR MINOR MODAL BLUES RHYTHM CHANGES
DIXIE SWING BOP SHUFFLE FUNKY FREE LATIN ROCK LAID-BACK VIRTUOSIC
COMMUNICATION INTERACTION BACKGROUNDS POLYPHONIC HOMOPHONIC POLY/CROSS RHYTHMS (HETEROPHONY
RANGE PHRASING CONTOUR IMPROVISATION MELODIC VS ARPEGIATTED VOCAL VS INSTRUMENTAL IDEAS
PERSONAL, IDENTIFIABLE OR PECULIAR MANNERS OF PLAYING
OTHER MUSICAL ISSUES:
IMPORTANT SEMINAL DEVELOPMENT S
SOCIETAL/ CULTURAL ISSUES:
RACIAL ETHNIC POLITICAL ECONOMIC RELIGIOUS NATIONALISTIC WORLD/GLOBAL IMPLICATIONS
VOICINGS IMPRESSIONISTIC EXTENSIONS SUBSTITUTIONS
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Head (12 bars) Trumpet Solo Alto and Tenor Solos Bass Solo Trumpet Solo Drum Solo Head Outro Tag
The instrumentatio n is a typical small hard bop combo consisting of some the greatest players of the day – Miles, Trane, Cannonball, Paul Chambers, Philly Joe Jones and Red Garland – the instruments are alto sax, tenor sax, trumpet, and rhythm section.
The tempo is blazing fast, yet this all-star band plays each section with ease. The dynamic is generally loud even during the solos as the players seem to battle each other – especially between alto and tenor sax.
The reaction is one of adrenaline and excitement. The playing is so incredible and flawless that the piece is high-energy and very exciting to listen to.
The main tune is a very very fast hard bop line. It is not a very recognizable tune, and the solos are taken at a blazing speed. Most of the solos are both angular and have a sense of phrasing and purpose. The strongest set of solos in my opinion is the battle between Cannonball and Trane, or the incredible drum solo leading back into the head. Philly Joe Jones maintains
The harmony is actually quite simple considering the complex bop melody and improvisations The voicings show a bit of the modern influence, many times leaving out the root for the bass player to take care of.
The rhythm is a hyper bop, however it doesn’t feel rushed as Miles plays somewhat of a more relaxing solo than Trane.
The communicatio n in this piece is amazing from the trading fours with the drums and trumpet solo to the solo battle between alto and tenor sax. One can recognize the separation between players through their playing style.
All players on this album have a unique way of soloing. The most recognizable for me would have to be John Coltrane. The way he treats a phrase and aggressively goes after the line is recognizable as the way he plays on Giant Steps.
This was a breakthroug h recording showing all of these musicians at the top of their game. Even Miles – who is not known as a dazzling bebop soloist can keep up with John Coltrane.
Perhaps the title Dr. Jekyll has a deeper meaning – representing a character that seems normal, but has something else going on below the surface. I’m not sure if this was meant as a political statement.
perfect time and development without the usage of the hi-hat. #