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    Friday, September 22nd, 2017 11:59 AM


    CoolAnd we've got another great day on our hands here. A rehearsal yesterday for a couple 3 hours, and then some pretty good guitar practice here at home. 
       Two new pieces on YouTube, both of them Yardbird Suite. One is a fairly brisk trio setting and the other a much more laid-back quartet with guitar.
      I favor those with just bass and drums, or with guitar added instead of piano. The piano tends to cover too much sonic ground, with all the possible frequencies covered. Perhaps if they stuck to one register or another..
      My chops are getting better from the practicing, but I still need to remember to align myself with the rhythm section(this  goal courtesy of a Michael Brecker clinic I watched online).. Recorded a couple things yesterday that showed some pretty good technique but they were all pushing the beat instead of relaxing into it.
      So I ended up scrapping most of what I'd recorded. That's fine. You're either hot or you're not, and I was not-so-hot here, even though I thought I was at the time.
      Funny thing about time. Once you get it, once your stuff starts landing in 'the pocket', you can feel it. It feels lighter, since there's no push/pull tempo-tantrum tension in there. And then you can feel more acutely when it's not in the pocket.
      I work on lines when I practice, playing interesting lines that go somewhere, and take your ear with it- but as much as anything, I work on time. How to play smoothly, how to relate to the rhythm section. Finding more 'truths' here as I work it. Different ways to relate.
     One thing I've discovered is to listen to the bass and drums viscerally- to experience the boom of the bass and the crisp sounds of the drums. That tends to pull you into the environment, and aligning with them is just a matter of course.
     You can do it quantitatively, with a metronome; or qualitatively, by listening and responding to the sounds of the rhythm section. I try to do both.
      And it seems to be something you have to maintain, just like you maintain muscle mass by lifting weights or some other malarkey. You've gotta practice your time. At least I have to..
      Oh, and I was kidding about lifting weights being malarkey. It's also something I do to maintain and maybe even add on a little bit more.
      Okay, that's all I've got for this Friday morning. As ever, thanks for reading, whoever-reads-this. More later.

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