What is more rewarding to play classical or jazz?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by beginner, Jun 27, 2013.

  1. J. Jericho

    J. Jericho Fortissimo User

    Mar 16, 2011
    Several thoughts....

    First, all music is a a combination of sounds and pauses thrown together, with a rhythm and a relationship among these sounds. To say that Jazz is just a bunch of notes or exercises stuck together makes it in no way different than any other kind of music. We practice exercises to be adept at playing the notes that the composer writes. We practice etudes to be able to add an emotional, communicative aspect to the music. When the subject of genre comes up, as it has in this thread, one may be surprised at the similarities among them, which brings me to...

    Second, it has been said that Jazz is a stream of eighth notes, so let's compare Baroque and Bebop and see that perhaps these are two forms of the same thing, separated by a couple of centuries. I would say that Johann Sebastian Bach and Clifford Brown had a lot in common rhythmically and musically. The difference between what we consider Classical music and Jazz is that the composer of Classical music has a deadline to come up with something musical that may be next month, next week, or even tomorrow, and he has the opportunity to change and perfect his composition before it is played. The Jazz improviser's deadline is RIGHT NOW!, and it has to be perfect the first time, which implies to me that an ability more difficult to develop than playing notes on a page is required in order for the performance to sound appropriately musical. Speaking of which...

    Third, When it comes to music, beauty is in the ear of the beholder. Everyone hears things in their own unique way. What sounds pleasing to one listener may sound horrible to another. A problem arises when a narcissistic listener declares as fact that a particular form of music is worthless, or worse, just because it doesn't happen to appeal to him. I have said before that there is a place for profanity, just not on TM. I think that TM should promote discipline of the kind it takes to become a better player and also to become a better communicator. People of all ages have access to TM, and it won't harm us if we set a positive example of how to engage in the exchange of thoughts and opinions. And yes, we can condemn that which is deserving without vulgarity and profanity, although we can allude to it if we choose. If someone wants a medium that is accessible to people of all ages that emphasizes all that is crude, all they have to do is turn on their TV. I would prefer that we keep TM and TV as it is today distinct from each other, however.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2013
  2. Comeback

    Comeback Forte User

    Jun 22, 2011
    Fort Wayne, IN
    Fine post, J.Jericho. We often associate trumpeting with singing, however there may be other useful vocal associations too. Some jazz improv can be likened to musical conversation, other efforts seem more like extemporaneous speaking. In either case it is important to have something to "say" and the musical capability to express ones self effectively. Written music, whether classical or a big band chart, provides the opportunity for premeditation, which can lend itself to creation of memorable repeatable melodic experiences for listeners. There is plenty of merit in both approaches.

    I am an adult educator. When I conduct a class, my activity can be likened to jazz improv. I try to be sensitive to my audience and, within limits defined by course objectives, try not to stick to a script, letting the conversation shape itself in a manner that is most meaningful and, hopefully, memorable to my particular audience. If I am presenting before a larger audience in a non-classroom environment where my topic is specific, my effort becomes premeditated and potentially repeatable.

  3. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    Jim ALL jazz imnprov IS musical conversation.
  4. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    Jim, Jazz imorpv is all about "singing" the notes... those black things on the page... just close approximations of graphical representation of the words... play the words, not those black things on the page... then you;re singing jazz!
  5. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    I am a medical educator... and when I do bed side rounds on my patients I do conduct jazz improvisation at bedside, with the medical students, residents, patient and myself as one swinging ensemble. After the bedrounding sessions, as then "pimp" my students and residents on what "chart" was the patient playing, who was the leader, who was the soloist(s), and what harmony, riff, scales, etc were being used?
  6. mchs3d

    mchs3d Mezzo Forte User

    Sep 30, 2005
    Provo, UT
    Personal taste would be the deciding factor. Bud Herseth said he got the most satisfaction from playing a symphony. In fact, he didn't really like playing solos much!
  7. J. Jericho

    J. Jericho Fortissimo User

    Mar 16, 2011
    A very good point. Nuance, a component that can make music beautiful and unforgettable.
  8. stumac

    stumac Fortissimo User

    Oct 19, 2008
    Flinders Vic Australia
    I recall an interview some time ago with Russell Procope who said "I think we played Mood Indigo every night of the 28 years I was in the Ellington Band, never quite the same each time".

    A Symphony is also at the conductor's interpretation, the Orchestra is his instrument.

    Regards, Stuart.
  9. Stefen

    Stefen Pianissimo User

    Apr 1, 2013
    Sutton Bridge, LINCS. UK
    Just playing is very satisfying, stop for 15 years and see how sad you get :D
  10. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

    Sep 20, 2009
    New York State USA
    the sad part is the "comeback" -- well the first 4 or 5 months of the "comeback" -- now that is the harsh reality of NOT playing either Jazz or Classical for 15 years, seems that when you start a "comeback", you can't play much for several months (IMHO)

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