Thread: Wynton Marsalis
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Old 12-18-2010, 02:36 PM
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Default Re: Wynton Marsalis

Originally Posted by aydee View Post
Trumpeter Lester Bowie said of Marsalis, "If you retread what's gone before, even if it sounds like jazz, it could be anathema to the spirit of jazz."

In 1997 pianist Keith Jarrett criticized Marsalis saying "I've never heard anything Wynton played sound like it meant anything at all. Wynton has no voice and no presence. His music sounds like a talented high-school trumpet player to me."

In 1986, in Vancouver, Miles Davis stopped his band to eject Marsalis, who had appeared onstage uninvited. Echoing Clarke's comment, Davis said "Wynton can't play the kind of shit we were playing", and twice told Marsalis to leave the stage saying "Get the @#$ off."
Wow, to be dissed so hard by those three marvels of jazz ... Wynton must have a hide like a rhino not to seriously question himself. Lester's comment is great - if you retread then all that's left is to polish the music up to an ever brighter sheen, which is cool in its way, but you can't say goodbye to the confronting, nasty, raw side of things. You can't go telling people what they should and shouldn't play - we all have to go to hell our own way or, in some cases, our teacher's way.

The Keith diss is too harsh IMO - I thought that the Wynton vid in the OP was great. I didn't know he could be that cool - I thought he was all about classy old time. Still what Keith said is no worse than what WM's been saying about people like Keith. Tit for tat. Oh well. I bought a Keith DVD a few months ago with Jack D on drums and it's magic. I've played it heaps and can forgive Keith anything at the moment. Jack didn't thrill me in a few records I'd heard in the past but on this DVD he plays with a ton of fire - like Elvin Mk II. His instinct for choosing the right note at the right time is genius. Sorry about the digression. The KJ quote made me think of the vid ...
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