Monday, January 04, 2016

Paul Bley 1932-2016

We've lost quite a few great people this week: the singer Natalie Cole, cinematographers Vilmos Zsigmond and Haskell Wexler, Harlem Globetrotter Meadowlark Lemon, and now pianist Paul Bley— word is, he passed away while listening to an album of his with Charlie Haden and Paul Motian. RIP

The drummer on this recording is Barry Altschul. The ending as he plays it, incidentally, is exactly the way I end tunes whenever there's any kind of ritard and fermata— I won't play in unison with the lead instrument until the last note. Often I'll set up the ensemble last note with an accent on the drums, when there's space. I didn't think there was anything unusual about it, but a couple of people have commented. Just a little postscript on one of my favorite endings ever...

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