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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I regularly visit tenor battles in Leiden in The Netherlands. Last Sunday they had three great and very expressive tenor players in the house: tenors Rinus Groeneveld and Wouter Kiers from Holland and John Dikeman from USA (but living in Holland for some years now). John (also a member here on SOTW) plays a lot of styles and brought some free jazz spirit in this battle, making this session a bit more chaotic than normal, but it also worked very inspiring on both Dutch Texas Tenor guys!

Nice is also to hear the differences between the sax and mouthpiece combinations of the three players: as saxes a Buescher 400, a Selmer Mark VI (with a SA80 series III neck!) and an old Conn. As mouthpieces: a Ponzol 120 with Bari medium reed, a Link Florida 9* with bari medium reed and a Theo Wanne 10 with a FL number 4 reed (if I remember well).

The organizer of these battles just put some clips on YouTube. Here are some links. The first one is a version of the 'Blues March' with screaming solo's by John and after that chase chorusses of Rinus and Wouter:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xj4lkNcz69M

The second clip is a part of 'St. Thomas' (with a very free ending starting at 4:55!):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HOCE564B2Zs

The third one is a solo of John Dikeman (I think it was in 'Oleo'):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mjGF3DPzjac

I have to say that the clips sound much less than what I heard live, but that's often the case with recordings made with a small camera.

I posted some while ago some other clips of another tenor battle in the same cafe >here<.

Enoy!!!
 

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You know, I play sax and love jazz music...but I might not have stayed in that club very long if that was the "entertainment." LOL

And I think these clips are proof positive that moving around a lot while playing does not a great sax player make (i.e. master the instrument first and then work on the Sonny Rollins impression).

Exhibit A: Note how the tenorman in the following clip plays softly and hardly moves around at age 80+, but that the net effect is a performance that is ultimately more powerful in terms of its artistry....


Different strokes?
 

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You know, I play sax and love jazz music...but I might not have stayed in that club very long if that was the "entertainment." LOL

And I think these clips are proof positive that moving around a lot while playing does not a great sax player make (i.e. master the instrument first and then work on the Sonny Rollins impression).

Exhibit A: Note how the tenorman in the following clip plays softly and hardly moves around at age 80+, but that the net effect is a performance that is ultimately more powerful in terms of its artistry....


Different strokes?
Right on!! I'm with you. Those jam sessions that are all loud and no tone tend to make me give a walking ovation,lol.
 

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Nice clips. Thanks for sharing. These guys play with lot of energy that's for sure.

Here is a polar opposite featuring a couple of my favourite present day tenors: Harry Allen (Selmer BA with a refaced master link) and Scott Robinson (Conn New Wonder with hard rubber Vandoren). Nice contrast of melodic styles with Harry having a heavier Ben Webster-ish tone and Robinson, a light, Lester Young type sound.




 

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Discussion Starter #5
You know, I play sax and love jazz music...but I might not have stayed in that club very long if that was the "entertainment." LOL

And I think these clips are proof positive that moving around a lot while playing does not a great sax player make (i.e. master the instrument first and then work on the Sonny Rollins impression).

Exhibit A: Note how the tenorman in the following clip plays softly and hardly moves around at age 80+, but that the net effect is a performance that is ultimately more powerful in terms of its artistry....
Funny that you mention Benny Golson Doc, because he played the day before this tenor battle in the Bimhuis in Amsterdam and gave a great concert :). Actually some of the people in the audience of Sunday visited both concerts, must have been quite a contrast! Something like comparing apples and pears. I guess the guys in the tenor battle took Benny's song-title 'Whisper Not' a bit too literally :bluewink:.

Right on!! I'm with you. Those jam sessions that are all loud and no tone tend to make me give a walking ovation,lol.
Indeed this jam session was a bit too much of 'who has the biggest sound' and most of us know what playing too loud can do with the quality of the tone. But, as already mentioned in the first post, the quality of the sound was live much much better than in the YouTube clips. So take care judging those guys just on only these clips, all three of them are good players and have a great tone. I know Rinus Groeneveld (the oldest player) for a long time and he can come along with anyone in any style. He once played in the 70's with Dexter Gordon, who spoke the words 'Nice tone!' to him after they finished :).

Nice clips. Thanks for sharing. These guys play with lot of energy that's for sure.

Here is a polar opposite featuring a couple of my favourite present day tenors: Harry Allen (Selmer BA with a refaced master link) and Scott Robinson (Conn New Wonder with hard rubber Vandoren). Nice contrast of melodic styles with Harry having a heavier Ben Webster-ish tone and Robinson, a light, Lester Young type sound.
Thanks for posting that Liam :). I also like those guys and have seen some of the clips before. But I would like to see Harry (who doesn't have a real big sound IMO) surviving in those Dutch session in Leiden. Technically no issue at all, but soundwise I'm not sure if he could be heard.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Another clip of the same session was uploaded yesterday. Here is 'Tenor Madness' (which was probably not composed by Sonny Rollins, but by Kenny Clarke and Kenny Dorham. See >this< very interesting post for more information on that):

 

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Damn, I'm not as good as Benny Golson...! Well, I guess I have to work on that.

No, I'm not surprised a lot of people aren't into this. Especially out of context, small camera with bad sound, I think a lot of the energy and sound quality is lost and you're just left with crazy out-of-tune machodom.

Anyway, it was fun as hell to do. Wouter and Rinus are two serious old school honkers and it was a great experience to play with them. They really know that bag inside and out and sound great doing it, I was just trying to keep up! But if you're not into Big Jay McNeeley or any of those other full on R&B screamers, than it's not going to be for you. So comparing it to Benny Golson makes no sense. I'm not saying it's on par with Big Jay either, just that's a much better frame of reference.
And I'm coming from a full on high energy free jazz background, which speared them on a bit as, Rinus especially, is very into Albert Ayler and all of those players as well. So I think they both enjoyed an excuse to really push the envelope sometimes and just squeal like a dieing pig. Personally, I think that's great. More screaming, more death to pigs!

I was just having fun and trying to hang in. I just realized, this was the first standards gig I've done in 5 years, and I gig quite a bit. But after this I think I may try to get back into it. It's a great feeling to just play a fantastic melody like Flamingo or Georgia on my Mind with a swinging band and let loose and not worry about impressing conservatory friends.
 

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That stuff reminds me of a favorite quote by a friend of mine commenting about a sax player. "He moves his fingers around until he thinks it sounds like jazz".
 

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... I would like to see Harry (who doesn't have a real big sound IMO) surviving in those Dutch session in Leiden. Technically no issue at all, but soundwise I'm not sure if he could be heard.
I would have thoight that if he couldn't be heard then surley the rest of the band would be playing too loud??
 

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How regularly do these shotoouts take place? and where's the venue? I visit Amstelveen quite a bit & an excursion out would be too good to miss.....
 

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nice to hear and see John with some of the best local honkers and being at par with them!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Anyway, it was fun as hell to do. Wouter and Rinus are two serious old school honkers and it was a great experience to play with them.
John, it was for sure also a great (and loud!) experience for the audience, who where lucky engough to hear the full quality sound of the horn-players instead of the small camera weak sound interpretation of it that we are discussing here on SOTW :).

I would have thoight that if he couldn't be heard then surley the rest of the band would be playing too loud??
Fully agree Liam. Only issue is how to get the rest of the band quiet, especially when you have a drummer, guitar player or complete Big Band on stage :bluewink:.

How regularly do these shotoouts take place? and where's the venue? I visit Amstelveen quite a bit & an excursion out would be too good to miss.....
Those jazz battles are organized in cafe 'De Uil van Hoogland', Nieuwstraat 28 in the beautiful 17th century city centre of Leiden (Netherlands). It's about a 20 minutes drive from Amstelveen. Check >here< for the agenda: all battles are at Sunday's (once a month, only during winter, free admission) starting between 16:00 and 16:30.

Next battle (20 Nov 2011) is with Susanne Alt (alto), Robert Veen (tenor) and Olaf Hoeks (tenor). That will be a lot softer, less wild and probably another style, but also very interesting. I will post a new SOTW thread when clips come available.
 
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