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Swing big band is a popular form of music originating in the United States where the weak pulse is exhibited in the music. Soloists are highly involved in the maintain arrangement while encompassing melody to establish a strong groove vibe. I have attended several swing big bands and become subjected to its unique style. My experiences with Swing Big Bands are the enlightenment of melodies and the sensation to dance. I have listened to a record by Charlie Parker called Billie's Bounce. The song was created in 1945 (Blumenthal, 192). The vivid symphony of saxophone, trumpet, bass guitar, piano, and drums can be enjoyed from the record as melodies overlap to create a smooth vibe. I found this experience delightful because of the variation in plays to combine a refined jazz blues song. Billie's Bounce can be followed through roadmaps as I have discovered several major events across the United States hosting the music with various artists redefining the original record to audiences. I have followed road maps of Swing big bands at the Avalon Ballroom and Roseville Big Band events where Billie's Bounce and other songs like Four on Six by Wes Montgomery (Ellington, 231). I experienced no problems in identifying bog bands events given the contemporary culture entertains the form of entertainment. The use of the internet made my experience quicker for selection of music.
During the period I have listed to swing big bands I appreciated the artisanship behind the innovations of the artists. It has changed the way I viewed Jazz and encouraged my curiosity for other musicians who relish in swing big bands. I have discovered how artists use Jazz to explore different styles and improvise ways of creating music by influencing the reverberation of the instruments (Ellington, 231). While listening to Billie's Bounce, I could hear the tempo of different instruments like the pounce of the chords of the bass guitar and the symphony of the piano. I found the trumpet very obvious as its melody combines with the echo of the drums. I also noticed the solo sessions of the saxophone that boasted the succinct atmosphere.
While enjoying swing big bands I can identify block harmony where the records are enriched with groove melody. The use of different instruments in Billie's Bounce creates flexible harmonic movement while shifting from directions between solo performances (Ellington, 231). I discovered that the saxophone and trumpet guide the tone of the melody as the harmony molds from individual chords. This is a unique feature in my opinion.
From my perspective earlier Jazz music was less refined that swing big bands since the rhythm involved light tune that was not refined. Despite the arrangement of the melody the conservative approach of earlier Jazz was less appealing (Blumenthal, 192). The piano, trumpet, clarinet and trombone usually combined in pairs were used in earlier Jazz. However, swing big bands use more than two instruments. The group size in higher in swing big bands usually around four to upwards while earlier jazz relied on two artists. I found the textures in swing big bands different where the repetition of chord structure and phrase for a refined groove texture. Each instrument could be heard blending into the record. Swing big bands are based off earlier jazz; therefore, the arrangements, form, and jazz elements are similar to those typically used. However, the improvisation of swing big bands makes the melody less constrictive. The freedom of style and lack of structure are two features that define earlier jazz and swing big bands. For earlier bands, the solo time was extended and lacked proper ornamentation.
Blumenthal, Bob. Jazz, London: Collins, (2014).
Ellington, Duke. Will Big Bands Ever Come Back? ;reconciliations of Big Band Era. American Jazz Classics, 2014. Sound recording.
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