Tuesday, September 2, 2008

5 Songs that got me into jazz

Let's face it, we're at a point here where a lot of people are "introduced" to jazz later in their life. I was one of them. Most of the stuff that "inducted" me was jazz-funk or fusion and whatnot, but anyways, here's a look at what got me into jazz.

And make sure you come up with your own list in the comments, I'd love to post a second round with all your thoughts.

1. Chameleon- Herbie Hancock Herbie Hancock - Head Hunters - Chameleon I first heard this song in a medley of stuff that Maynard Ferguson and his band did when he dropped by my township's high school for a master class and performance. The persistent groove really stuck with me and I loved getting my non-jazz friends hooked on that bass groove.

2. Birdland- Weather Report Weather Report - The Best of Weather Report - Birdland My bassist friend told me to give Weather Report a listen, so I went straight for Heavy Weather. It was a good choice. I still listen to that whole album, they're all genious. I now own this one on vinyl.

3. Kind of Blue (album)- Miles Davis Miles Davis - Kind of Blue This one I heard much earlier then anything else listed here. I heard this album going into 4th grade and loved So What, Freddie the Freeloader, and All Blues.

4. Embraceable You/I Got It Bad And That Ain't Good- Louis Prima and Keely Smith Louis Prima & Keely Smith - Live from Las Vegas: Louis Prima & Keely Smith - Embraceable You / I Got It Bad and That Ain't Good I never knew anybody was ever allowed to have this much fun, especially when playing music.

5. Salt Peanuts- Dizzy Gillespie Dizzy Gillespie - Odyssey 1945-1952 - Salt Peanuts I dare you to listen and NOT say "Salt Peanuts! Salt Peanuts!" I mean, seriously...

Ok, well there's my list of 5 Songs that got me into jazz. Of course I left some out like Soul Bossa Nova, and anything Vince Guaraldi, but we'll save that for another time....



Paul said...

I'm in my 30s and have been playing jazz music since high school. Here are five songs that I was exposed to back in high school that played a formative role in my interest in jazz:

1) Ornithology - Charlie Parker
My high school stage band performed this song my senior year. This song also got me interested in Charlie Parker's music.

2) Birdland - Weather Report
My first experience with this was in marching band - the arrangement was geared more towards marching band music, but the jazz feel really came through.

3) In the Mood - Glenn Miller
Glenn Miller certainly made his mark on music. I never get tired of hearing or playing this one.

4) Stardust - Hoagy Carmichael
I played this one for a (successful) band audition. The teacher from whom I was taking private lessons suggested this one.

5) TJ's Boogie - (not sure of author)
This one goes back to when I just started playing jazz in high school. One of my first solos ever.

jazzfreak11 said...

thanks for your list! hopefully we'll get another response or two so I can put another post...

I'll make sure to add a call of action to today's post.

Jazz Trumpet Licks said...

Yeah, I loved Dizzy Gillespie's Salt Peanuts tune when I first heard it too. It's got a very catchy melody to it.

Nice blog.