I Won’t Cry…

Our cover of Janiva Magness – I won’t Cry.
Voice – Madam Blanc
Guitar – Serge Bardot

The harder the words, the colder the night
The closer the hand, the sharper the knife
The longer I hold out, the further you seem to fly
I get cut and I might bleed
But I won’t cry!
The bigger the love, the blacker the bruise
The less that you give, the more i could use
The longer you hold out
The further you seem to fly
I get cut and I might bleed
But I won’t cry!
The quicker the lie
(I might bleed)
The softer the moan
(I might bleed)
All of those whisper
(I might bleed)
They just sink like a stone
(I might bleed)
I think momma should push on
(I might bleed)
Before these fists just fly
I get cut and I might bleed
But I won’t cry!
The stronger the bond, oh, oh
The tougher the loss, oh, oh
The pain in my heart, oh, oh
Until it just stops
Once more I’ll just hold on
Until I get strength to fly
I get cut and I might bleed
But I won’t cry!
I get cut and I might bleed
But I won’t cry!
I get cut and I might bleed
But I won’t cry!
I get cut and I might bleed
But I won’t cry!

Janiva Magness conveys a message of resilience and strength in the face of challenges, pain, and heartache. She talks about enduring difficult situations and emotional pain without allowing themselves to show vulnerability through tears.

The lyrics talk about the various hardships and struggles that Janiva faces, such as feeling cut, bruised, and hurt by love, lies, and loss. Despite experiencing these painful moments, she emphasizes her determination not to cry as a way to show inner strength and resilience.

The repeated refrain of “I get cut and I might bleed, but I won’t cry” reinforces the theme of enduring pain and difficulties without succumbing to tears. It portrays a sense of defiance and courage in the face of adversity, suggesting a refusal to let emotional wounds break them down.

The song is about facing challenges head-on, acknowledging the pain and struggles, but choosing to remain strong and composed despite the hardships. It conveys a message of inner strength, resilience, and the power to persevere through tough times without giving.

Enclosures in Jazz improvisation

Enclosures can create tension, interest, and a sense of movement in solos. The concept involves surrounding a target note (usually a chord tone) with neighboring notes, both above and below, before resolving to the target note. This can add complexity and chromaticism to the improvisation, contributing to a more sophisticated and unpredictable sound.
The purpose of enclosure is multifaceted:

  1. Tension and Release: Enclosure introduces dissonance before resolving to a consonant target note. This tension and subsequent release create a dynamic and expressive quality in the music.
  2. Expressive Phrasing: Enclosure can be used to shape melodic lines in interesting ways. It provides a fluid and connected flow to the improvisation, making the solo more expressive and engaging.
  3. Chromaticism: Enclosure often involves the use of chromatic passing tones, which are notes outside the diatonic scale of the key. This adds chromaticism to the improvisation, contributing to a more colorful and diverse harmonic palette.
  4. Creativity and Variation: Jazz is a genre that values creativity and individual expression. Enclosure allows musicians to experiment with different ways of approaching and resolving target notes, promoting variety and innovation in their solos.
  5. Connecting Chord Changes: When moving between chords, especially in more complex harmonic progressions, enclosure can help smooth the transition between chord tones, making the improvisation sound more connected and seamless.

In summary, the use of enclosure in jazz is a technique that adds nuance, expressiveness, and complexity to improvisation. It is a tool that skilled jazz musicians employ to navigate the harmonic landscape with creativity and flair.

For the Trees….

My Hommage to the beautiful trees……

In groves where whispers weave a tale,
The trees stand tall, a living veil.
Their branches dance in dappled light,
A symphony of green, a pure delight.

Beneath their boughs, a sanctuary found,
A sacred hush, a tranquil sound.
Leaves like emeralds in the sun,
A verdant tapestry, a life begun.

Majestic guardians of the earth,
Roots entwined, a silent rebirth.
They breathe in whispers, exhale in sighs,
A timeless dance beneath the skies.

In spring, they don a vibrant dress,
A kaleidoscope of nature’s finesse.
Blossoms bloom, a fragrant song,
A melody that lingers long.

Summer’s shade, a welcome cool,
Where golden sunlight plays the fool.
Leaves applaud in the gentle breeze,
A rustling ode to sylvan ease.

Autumn arrives, a painter’s brush,
Hues of amber, scarlet, and blush.
A final flourish before they sleep,
A fiery farewell, memories to keep.

Winter’s hush, a silver gown,
Frost-kissed branches, a silent crown.
Yet within their stillness, a promise glows,
Of rebirth, as the cold wind blows.

Oh, the beauty of these ancient kin,
Silent storytellers, where life begins.
In the tapestry of time, they weave,
A legacy of beauty, the trees believe.

Wes Montgomery interviewed by Ralph J. Gleason, 1961

“I got interested in playing the guitar because of Charlie Christian. Like all other guitar players! There’s no way out. I never saw him in my life, but he said so much on the records that I don’t care what instrument a cat played, if he didn’t understand and didn’t feel and really didn’t get with the things that Charlie Christian was doing, he was a pretty poor musician– he was so far ahead.

I’m so limited. I have a lot of ideas— well, a lot of thoughts—that I’d like to see done with the guitar. With the octaves, that was just a coincidence, going into octaves. It’s such a challenge yet, you know, and there’s a lot that can be done with it and with chord versions like block chords on piano. But each of these things has a feeling of its own, and it takes so much time to develop all your technique.

My aim, I think, is to be able to move from one vein to another without any trouble. If you were going to take a melody line or counterpoint or unison lines with another instrument, do that and then, maybe after a certain point, you drop out completely, and maybe the next time you’ll play phrases and chords or something or maybe you’ll take octaves. That way you have a lot of variations, if you can control each one of them and still keep feeling it. To me the biggest thing is to keep the feeling within your playing regardless of what you play. Keep a feeling there, and that’s hard to do.

You know, John Coltrane has been sort of a god to me. Seems like, in a way, he didn’t get the inspiration out of other musicians. He had it. (…) I think I heard Coltrane before I really got close to Miles. Miles had a tricky way of playing his horn that I didn’t understand as much as I did Coltrane. Then after I really began to understand Miles, then Miles Davis came up on top.

Now, this may sound pretty weird— the way I feel when I’m up there playing the way I play doesn’t match—but it’s like some cats are holding your hands. C’mon, you know, and they’ll keep you in there. If you try to keep up to them, they’ll lose you, you know. And I like that. I really like that.”

Nardis in Sardinia….

I have been working on the Jazz tune written by Miles Davis called ‘Nardis’….the melody, especially with it’s Phrygian flavour had got stuck in my head. Some days later I was jamming over some funk when I realised I was playing the Nardis melody (close to), and it fitted. I was gonna call it Sardin….I settled on Sardinia….I hope you dig it.

Some background, courtesy of wikipedia…”Nardis” is a composition by American jazz trumpeter Miles Davis. It was written in 1958, during Davis’s modal period, to be played by Cannonball Adderley for the album Portrait of Cannonball.[1] The piece has come to be associated with pianist Bill Evans, who performed and recorded it many times.

Composition

From 1955 to 1958, Miles Davis was leading what would come to be called his First Great Quintet. By 1958, the group consisted of John Coltrane on tenor saxophone, Red Garland on piano, Paul Chambers on bass, and Philly Joe Jones on drums, and had just been expanded to a sextet with the addition of Cannonball Adderley on alto saxophone.

Coltrane’s return to Davis’s group in 1958 coincided with the “modal phase” albums: Milestones (1958) and Kind of Blue (1959) are both considered essential examples of 1950s modern jazz. Davis at this point was experimenting with modes—i.e. scale patterns other than major and minor.[3]

In mid-1958, Bill Evans replaced Garland on piano and Jimmy Cobb replaced Jones on drums, but Evans too left after eight months, replaced by Wynton Kelly in late 1958. This group backing Davis, Coltrane, and Adderley, with Evans returning for the recording sessions, would make Kind of Blue, often considered the greatest jazz album of all time. Adderley left the band in September 1959 to pursue his career, returning the line-up to a quintet.[10]

In July 1958, Evans appeared as a sideman in Adderley’s album Portrait of Cannonball, that featured the first performance of “Nardis”, specially written by Davis for the session. While Davis was not very satisfied with the performance, he said that from then on, Evans was the only one to play it in the way he wanted. The piece would come to be associated with Evans’s future trios, which played it frequently.[1]

[We’re gonna] finish up featuring everyone in the trio with a Miles Davis number that’s come to be associated with our group, because no one else seemed to pick up on it after it was written for a Cannonball date I did with Cannonball in 1958—he asked Miles to write a tune for the date [the album Portrait of Cannonball], and Miles came up with this tune; and it was kind of a new type of sound to contend with. It was a very modal sound. And I picked up on it, but nobody else did… The tune is called “Nardis.”

—?Interview at Ilkka Kuusisto’s home, ca.1970, Bill Evans[11]

The use of the Phrygian mode and the minor Gypsy scale in this tune is also present in other “Spanish” works from those dates, like Davis’s Sketches of Spain.

Davis never recorded “Nardis”, and Adderley only did once. George Russell recorded it on his album Ezz-Thetics (1961). Pianist Richard Beirach recorded it on his album Eon (1974), guitarist Ralph Towner recorded the tune for his Solo Concert album (1979), and The John Abercrombie Quartet recorded it on the album Up and Coming (2016).

I played a 1997 Fender ‘Big Apple’ Stratocaster through a Neural DSP plugin. Focusrite Scarlett interface into Ableton Live.

Buddy Guy on The Blues

“I’d pay anything to make sure this music does what it’s always meant to do: Let people know they ain’t alone. See, we all got the blues. That’s the human condition. But those blues don’t mean we got to grieve. Those blues will warm your heart. When the groove gets to your gut, those blues, brother, turn sad to glad.”Buddy Guy

When it goes out of shape…

Just remember, never show your hand. So if you didn’t feel 100% about your performance, and we never do, don’t let the audience know. Let them decide how you played and how much they enjoyed it. I think you’ll be surprised in their version of events compared to yours as a player.

Matt Warnock

The dog charity gig was interesting……..
We set up under the lovely shelter they had erected for us. Then there was a downpour and we were flooded out! We moved to higher ground and set up again. It wasn’t ideal, I couldn’t hear the other guys very well, and I wasn’t happy with my sound. However, I resolved to play like I meant it, and look like I was enjoying the best concert ever. The bass player and the drummer didn’t really know the set that well so we were a bit ropey to say the least. But we tried, and it was fun.
At the end of the afternoon, the woman who booked us came over and said……get this….”So you’re Serge Bardot! You are bloody fantastic!”…..She went on to tell us how much she had enjoyed it. How much better we were than any other band she’d booked, and, booked us again (with a fee) for another gig at a private party. We also had a geezer who runs an internet radio station asking us if we had any recordings as he would love to do a feature on us on his show! On top of that a string of people complimented us and thanked us.
So there you go. I have no idea how that works……but it does.

Solo Guitar philosophy by Joe Pass…

“A lot of people think that your’e playing like bass notes at the same time your’e playing chords at the same time your’e playing melody, and it’s not like that. It’s an illusion. Your’e playing a bass note sometimes your’e playing a chord sometimes your’e playing the melody most of the time and your’e filling. So it’s all done by doing something with motion. If you try to play a bass note on the chord on every beat, you’d be working for 8 months on one song and then once you learn it, thats the only way your’e gonna play it.” Joe Pass

I had to let that sink in a while…..

Is Jazz old peoples music?

Jazz Guitar

No, jazz is not just old people’s music. While jazz has its roots in the early 20th century and was popularized by musicians such as Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, and Charlie Parker, it continues to evolve and be relevant today. Jazz has influenced and been influenced by other genres such as rock, hip hop, and electronic music, and continues to attract young audiences and new artists. There are many contemporary jazz musicians who are creating innovative and exciting music that appeals to people of all ages. Therefore, jazz is not just old people’s music, but a vibrant and diverse genre that continues to evolve and inspire new generations of musicians and fans.

Well then, do you have to be old to play jazz?
No, you do not have to be old to play jazz. Jazz is a genre that can be played by musicians of any age. Many great jazz musicians started playing at a young age, such as Wynton Marsalis, who started playing trumpet at the age of six, and Esperanza Spalding, who began playing bass at the age of 15. There are also many young jazz musicians who are making a name for themselves today, such as Joey Alexander, a pianist who gained recognition when he was just 11 years old. While jazz has a rich history and many legendary figures who were active in the genre in the past, it is also a genre that continues to attract and inspire new generations of musicians, regardless of their age.

So, how is jazz doing, as a genre?
Jazz continues to be an important and thriving genre of music. While it may not receive as much mainstream attention as some other genres, it has a dedicated and passionate following around the world. Jazz festivals continue to draw large crowds, and there are many clubs and venues that specialize in jazz music.

In recent years, jazz has also been experiencing a resurgence in popularity among younger audiences, as more and more young musicians are incorporating jazz elements into their music. Jazz has also been embraced by hip hop artists, who have used jazz samples and instrumentation in their music.

In terms of the industry, jazz has faced some challenges due to the decline of physical album sales and changes in the way people consume music. However, many jazz musicians have adapted to these changes by finding new ways to connect with audiences through live streaming, social media, and other digital platforms.

Overall, jazz may not be as prominent in the mainstream as some other genres, but it remains a vibrant and important part of the music world, with a dedicated following and a bright future ahead.

Friday’s Child Album

Six years ago we released this album. We had such great fun making it. If you didn’t catch it first time around, here’s your chance.

Our first album together!
“Each day we went into the studio with an idea, a notion, a catalyst. We emptied our minds and prayed that the Gods of music might express themselves through us”…

This album is dedicated to the glory and majesty of mother earth
Recorded in France 2016. all rights reserved.

Feedback…..
John – Interesting, diverse, mesmerising and most of all extremely listenable. Loved the way the cultures mix and blend superbly on Go-Go-11. That bluesy Stay in bed is a great tune and beautifully handled, however, the best gem amongst all has to be for me, FNIK, that’s awesomely good.


Peter Jezukiewicz Fab album with lots of great ideas and playing.If you start running production coaching courses I’ll sign up!


Steve Trotter – It’s very well recorded….. the content wasn’t what I expected !!! Nevertheless I can hear the work that has been put in to produce such varied tracks … chapeau BenBros for an interesting musical voyage. Hints of Ravi Shankar …Cream …. Al Jarreau …. Alain Caron.

Piers Lane Only had opportunity to listen to the Bhangra track so far. Love it – good drum/percussion sound and lovely freedom to it. Reminds me of Afrocelt Sound System in terms of rhythm/vocals (tho of course different culturally!). Good stuff.

Ernest Taylor What a super eclectic mix of tracks, Steve – very well performed and recorded. Hats off to you and your Bro.

credits

released April 1, 2017

We give thanks to the following musicians for their inspirational contribution….
Madamne Blanc, Tina Chachevski, Rev’ Dave Seward, Serge Baudot, Vihaan Nair, Tim Bragg, The Immaculated Imitators .