The Bebop Players
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|A late bloomer who didn't start playing guitar
until he was in his 20s, Tal Farlow is a self-taught player who didn't read music.
Nevertheless, by the time he was 30, the inventive guitarist had scored gigs with
clarinetist Buddy De Franco and vibraphonist Red Norvo. Blessed with blinding speed, an
unerring knack for great melodies and a deft touch, he won critical acclaim in the early
'50s for his work with Norvo and trumpeter Artie Shaw. He led his own trio until a
distaste for the music business led him to return to North Carolina for work as a sign
painter. By the late '60s, he was making irregular appearances at festivals, and by the
'80s he had resumed his partnership with Norvo, surprising audiences who had never heard
his now-out-of-print seminal recordings.
The great Jazz
Guitarist died on July 25, 1998 at 6.00am at the Memorial Sloane-Kettering Cancer Centre
in Manhattan, NYC, USA. Please visit Andy Sheppard's, Tal Farlow page for more
information and guitarist Dan Axelrod's eulogy, spoken at Tal's funeral service on Jul 29, 1998. Tal will be
sadly missed by all of us.
New York - Tal Farlow
This album comes from one of Tal's most fertile periods' featuring Gerry Wiggins, piano,
Ray Brown , Bass and Chico Hamilton, Drums Tal plays the tunes:
|I Like to recognise the tune|
|Strike up the band|
|Autumn in New York|
|And She remembers me|
|Little Girl Blue|
|Have you met Miss Jones|
Featuring some of Tal's best playing ranging from great chord melodies to
lightening fast tempos.
|Talmadge Farlow (1996) - Lorenzo DeStefano
video features Tal Farlow, talking about his life and work, and preparation for a concert.
Great historical document and a must for all Jazz guitarists.
Style of Tal Farlow : The Elements of Bebop Guitar by S. Rochinski
's book is an indepth look at Tal's playing style and harmony. The book is divided into
four sections, Single Line Solo Construction, Chord-Melody Reharmonization Techniques,
Special Effects and Solo Transcriptions. Steve studied with Tal and has some real insights
into Tal's way of thinking.
Winners - Barney Kessel
One of the finest
guitarists in jazz history, Barney Kessel was largely self-taught after just three months
of lessons at the age of 12. By the early 1940s he was working in big bands, playing in
1943 with the Chico Marx orchestra directed by Ben Pollack, and then in a succession of
prominent swing bands including those of Charlie Barnet, Hal McIntyre, and Artie Shaw.
Kessel also appeared in Shaw's small group, the Gramercy Five. By the late 1940s, he was
doing substantial radio work in New York City, and his long career was divided between
commercial studio work and more straight-ahead jazz playing. In 1952 he joined the Oscar
Peterson trio with bassist Ray Brown. He remained with the group for a year, touring
extensively with Norman Granz's Jazz at the Philharmonic, including a European tour
backing Lester Young and Ella Fitzgerald. Kessel's flexibility made him a natural for
studio work, and he appeared anonymously on countless pop records and TV and film
soundtracks, recording with a Who's Who of American pop music that included Elvis Presley,
the Coasters, the Beach Boys, Cher, Judy Garland, and Frank Sinatra. His jazz credits
stretched from Kid Ory to Sonny Rollins, touching on almost every major figure in between,
and he recorded with a variety of fellow guitarists, including T-Bone Walker and Duane
Eddy. Though Kessel was a consummate swing and bop musician, his instrument lent itself to
the cooler textures of the West Coast style. He became one of the most popular jazz
artists of the 1950s, often working with Andre Previn and Shelly Manne on jazz versions of
musicals. In the 1960s he took sabbaticals from studio work to play clubs and concerts,
and increasingly incorporated Brazilian rhythms into his work. In the 1970s he appeared
with Herb Ellis and Charlie Byrd in a group called the Great Guitars. A stroke in 1992
ended his playing career. consistently won readers' polls in Down Beat, Metronome, and
Playboy. Among the most talented of Charlie Christian's disciples, he combined great
swing, rhythmic inventiveness, a steady flow of melodic ideas, and a technical flare that
was evident whether soloing in single notes or chords. His immersion in studio music
occasionally colored his own projects, which are sometimes diminished by abysmal pop fare,
even including a jazz version of the musical Hair. However, despite decades of work in
commercial music, as an arranger and producer as well as a guitarist, Kessel remained a
great bop soloist, and there are excellent examples of his work from every decade of his
|Barney Kessel 1962-91 This video captures almost 30 years of rare
performances from 1962 to 1991. Barney is seen playing in a trio setting, solo and with
jazz guitarists Herb Ellis and Charlie Byrd.
|Elementary Guitar (1981)
video featues Barney talking about his approach to basic guitar playing.
Dummies (For Dummies) - by Dirk Sutro, Barney Kessel
A new book
out, Barney was involved in producing. It presents a history and overview of Jazz. Great
for the beginner in this field.
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