Unsquared Dance / Take Five / Blue Rondo

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Posted: 2011 03-08


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Brubeck at the Kennedy Centre

One of the most famous songs in the history of jazz was written while riding a horse. “Oom–chucka-chuck, boom boom … If you’re alone and just riding with nothing but you and your horse, and the horse is going along at a steady gate, I could hear how to put a different beat against that. 1 2 3 4 5. That was the start of the way I thought about rhythm.”

Dave Brubeck was awarded the prestigious Kennedy Center Honor in Washington on his 89th birthday — Dec. 6th, 2009.

After a touching tribute by Herbie Hancock, the musical segment began with the (very) All-Star Dave Brubeck Quintet opening with a short take on the hipster’s Unsquare Dance, and then joined by the large Jazz Ambassadors of the U.S. Army Field Band to play the biggest-selling jazz song of all time, Take Five.  A complete hit song in less than 2¼ minutes.  Enjoy the trading off between Miguel Zenon’s sax and Joe Faddis’s trumpet — and don’t even try to sit still.

They’re then joined by — as an evidently wonderful surprise to Dave — his four sons! playing his famous and snappy Blue Rondo a la Turk on their respective trombone, piano, cello, and drums.  Enjoy Dave’s famous joyous jazz smile as he sums up fatherhood and art and music and longevity and giving.

To add some visual candy to the musical majesty, watch for the beautiful retro-Hollywood Big Bandstand shot (say, 2:15 or 2:37) — set to a gorgeous 21st century backdrop.

Brother Dave was one of the masters of jazz rhythm who stepped it up, played with it, challenged it from every angle, and captured the polyrhythms and faster tempo of our modern times.  Just as the Beatles made rock music accessible to fans of many genres, it was composers and players like Brubeck and Dizzy who spread jazz into the guitar & drum stores and classrooms all over the world. 

Take five and enjoy this.

Guaranteed to unsquare you.


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Hold on to your tumblers listening to this!!!

And all written while riding a horse ... of course!!

Thanks for posting, Mr. B!!

Megan in PA

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Susan in PA

Hasan Sabri Kayaoğlu-Dedegi

Honoring Dave Brubeck with his sons Jazz quintet - Dave Brubeck oğullarının Jazz beşlisiyle onurlandırılıyor.

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