While perusing the homepage of this site earlier today, making sure everything was in order, something jumped out at me: A major gap in my tempo categories! How did this happen? How have I not recorded anything between 260-300 BPM?? That’s prime wanking territory. I’ve spent years perfecting paradiddles and triple flama-ratama-dingdongs in the this range, yet I somehow neglected to record anything for this blog. I immediately went up to my studio, set the click track to 285 BPM and got to work.
The second-fastest loop yet to be released, today’s groove kicks of my new tempo category with some straight up bebop playing in the vein of Max Roach and Vernel Fournier. A four bar phrase with brushes on the snare drum, this uptempo jazz groove is one of many that I’ll be releasing in the next loop pack.
Well, I promised nothing but jazz this week and I’m staying true to my word. As much as I wanted to record some glam-rock, power ballad beats (trust me, they’re coming), I resisted the temptation and stayed focused on the “classic” stuff.
Like yesterday’s groove, today’s loop is another eight bar phrase, but at a brisker tempo and played with brushes. Stylistically, it’s a mix of all of my favorite brush players including; “Philly Joe” Jones, Max Roach and Vernel Fournier.
One of my biggest regrets is that I never saw Elvin Jones perform before he passed away. Whenever he was in New York, performing at The Blue Note or The Village Vanguard, it seemed like I always had a gig or a rehearsal and couldn’t make it to the show. I kept hearing from friends that he was still playing with the same fire and energy that he did in the 1960’s with Coltrane, to the point where it seemed like he getting better in his later years. I had a false assumption that age would never slow him down and I would have plenty of opportunities to witness one of the great masters in person.
I’ve noticed there seems to be a shortage of decent jazz drum loops out there and I’ve decided to do something about it. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be recording a wide range of jazz grooves. Everything from Art Blakey Mambos to Vernel Fournier bush patterns. Today’s loop is the first of many more to come. It’s a groove in 3/4 inspired by Elvin with a bit of Bill Stewart thrown in.
Sorry things have been quiet around here. My wife and I went away for the weekend to celebrate our one year anniversary and for some reason, she wouldn’t let me bring my drums. Look for some new loops tomorrow.
In the meantime, check out this 1959 video of the Ahmad Jamal trio featuring the great Vernel Fournier on drums. Next to “Philly Joe” Jones, he’s one of my favorite brush players.