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RE: [RedHotJazz] Early Brass Basses

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  • ALAN BOND
    Hi Folks,                  I m not so sure about the string bass offering greater swing, though it may increase flexibility in a band in some
    Message 1 of 43 , Jan 31, 2011
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      Hi Folks,
                       I'm not so sure about the string bass offering greater swing, though it may increase flexibility in a band in some ways. The early Ellington sides for Columbia which included Henry 'Bass' Edwards on brass bass are masterpieces of swing and 'Hop Head' in particular is a rollicking example of how to do it. I would be the first one to admit that Edwards' short sojourn in the bass chair was eclipsed by the fabulous \Wellman Braud but a good brass player adds an extra voice that can be exploited by great arrangers in a way that could only be imagined until Jimmy Blanton came on the scene and changed the listener's view of string bass players for ever. Cyrus St Clair knew how to voice the sousaphone in the Clarence Williams band and it was quite late when Williams went over to using a string bass and I don't think I have heard many of his recordings that don't swing.
      TTFN - 007

      --- On Mon, 31/1/11, David Brown <johnhaleysims@...> wrote:

      From: David Brown <johnhaleysims@...>
      Subject: RE: [RedHotJazz] Early Brass Basses
      To: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com
      Date: Monday, 31 January, 2011, 16:10

      Hi Alan

      The brass also had carrying advantage in dancehalls when the bands started
      getting larger and I think it would have first appeared in this environment.

      I think the norm for early, i.e 78, electric recording would have been a
      single mike making positioning of the various instruments still imperative
      for balance, but I may be wrong. Anybody know ?  Having said that, I was
      just listening Ellington stereo transcriptions of 1932, also truly revealing
      of the full power and glory of a real N.O. bassist.

      I observe that as amplification on bandstands also became possible brass was
      soon superseded by string which, to me, offers far greater flexibility,
      subtlety and swing.

      Dave


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    • domitype
      I found this 1915  picture (and info) on the Henry Allen Band: http://www.hurricanebrassband.nl/Brassband%20Henry%20Allen%20brass%20band.htm Be sure to check
      Message 43 of 43 , Feb 12, 2011
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        I found this 1915  picture (and info) on the Henry Allen Band:
        http://www.hurricanebrassband.nl/Brassband%20Henry%20Allen%20brass%20band.htm
        Be sure to check the Brass Band History page on that site - lots of research here!

        Dave Richoux (you may notice a different e-mail for me due to technical difficulties with my old one.)

        On Feb 11, 2011, at 12:31 AM, "David Brown" <johnhaleysims@...> wrote:

        Hello John

        Difficult to find pictorial evidence 20s & 30s brass snip
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