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  #1  
Old 11-27-2017, 03:09 AM
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Default Keeping big band horns from dragging. NOW w/ VIDEO!!

Anybody with real experience out there have any tips? I've been playing every other month or so with a big band a friend of mine is putting together. Mostly very good LA session folks. THEY sound great together but as a group the time gets pulled down very easily. On sections where I'm not playing it drops dramatically as well so I know it's not something I'm specifically doing. I listen to recordings and even when I'm pounding away, they're sometimes an eighth note behind.

The last rehearsal had a great bass player who I've played a bunch with before. He was definitely more my tempo ally than I've had previously, which helped the situation a lot but I feel like I could probably be doing more to keep things moving along.

I'm definitely not a super loud player in these situations as I'm trying to blend but I recognize that that could be a potential issue for togetherness. Another possibility could be that I need to use a ping-ier ride?

I've seen these same musicians in other bands where this doesn't seem to be the case, so I'm guessing there's some techniques or tricks to helping keep the band in tempo. Any thoughts? Anecdotal ideas welcome as well. Thanks!


PS - I did a search but didn't find what I was looking for, but if you know of a certain thread where this gets discussed, feel free to post a link..
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Old 11-27-2017, 03:48 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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I'm definitely not a super loud player in these situations as I'm trying to blend but I recognize that that could be a potential issue for togetherness. Another possibility could be that I need to use a ping-ier ride?
Unless there's a conductor (as often there was in olden times) then your drums are definitely the timekeeper. You don't need to be loud as a drummer, but the ride may indeed be the issue. A group of players needs a pulse, and it might just be an improvement in the pulsiest sound on almost any stage: the ride or hats.

Good luck!

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Old 11-27-2017, 03:52 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

In my experience, the bass player has the greatest control over tempo in a jazz/big band setting. If you can find a bass player who locks in with your timing, the horns will have no option but to follow.

Another factor - I've heard a few big bands lately where the drummer is playing a tiny bop kit and low, trashy cymbals. Can't hear the cymbals at all, and barely hear the drums. The ride cymbal needs to heard clearly over the entire band, so make sure its one with some clarity - at least a medium, or a ping or similar. Save the the soft thin rides for playing in a trio.
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Old 11-27-2017, 04:18 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

I agree with what others have said. I'm betting some or all of the horns can't hear the bass and/or drums when they are playing.

At rehearsals, set up the whole band in a small tight circle. Where everyone faces everyone else. You will experience a huge difference.


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Old 11-27-2017, 04:50 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

Do they drag it down as a group? The first thing I would do is ask them why the tempo is dragging. It could be because they can't hear you do to the instrumentation, or maybe they feel like you are pushing the tempo. You mentioned that even when you are pounding away that they, as a collective, are behind. Even if you're not pushing the tempo, do they still do it as a group?
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Old 11-27-2017, 04:52 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

Make sure you're being heard-- I would be using somewhat brighter, heavier cymbals-- A. Zildjian, Paiste Signature, whatever you have that cuts. Especially ride and hihats. I simplify my thing overall-- more quarter notes on the cymbal and in comping-- comping becomes more about big punctuations/dropping bombs than in small group playing. Don't be afraid to hit the drums. What sounds blended to your ears behind the drums is probably not going to be strong enough.

I guess there's no leader running the rehearsals? If there was you could talk to him, and he could rehearse the horns on this point, and/or tell you what you're doing wrong that is contributing to the dragging.
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Old 11-27-2017, 05:29 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Originally Posted by ConcertTom View Post
Anybody with real experience out there have any tips? I've been playing every other month or so with a big band a friend of mine is putting together. Mostly very good LA session folks. THEY sound great together but as a group the time gets pulled down very easily. On sections where I'm not playing it drops dramatically as well so I know it's not something I'm specifically doing. I listen to recordings and even when I'm pounding away, they're sometimes an eighth note behind.

The last rehearsal had a great bass player who I've played a bunch with before. He was definitely more my tempo ally than I've had previously, which helped the situation a lot but I feel like I could probably be doing more to keep things moving along.

I'm definitely not a super loud player in these situations as I'm trying to blend but I recognize that that could be a potential issue for togetherness. Another possibility could be that I need to use a ping-ier ride?

I've seen these same musicians in other bands where this doesn't seem to be the case, so I'm guessing there's some techniques or tricks to helping keep the band in tempo. Any thoughts? Anecdotal ideas welcome as well. Thanks!


PS - I did a search but didn't find what I was looking for, but if you know of a certain thread where this gets discussed, feel free to post a link..
Oh man. This is an issue all over the place!

Mostly, it's a problem when jazz cats are on a pop or Latin gig, and the horns need to be more on top, but instead they drag like hell because they're used to it. In any horn band, it's all about the lead trumpet. He/she is the sound that the other horns will try to blend with. If the lead trumpet drags, so will the rest of the horns, because that's how you get a section to sound tight.

So, the discussion should be between you, the lead trumpet, and the band leader. Make it understood that, while you like a laid back approach in this setting, an 8th note is just too much of a good thing, like ketchup on fries.

A bright ride could help, too, but you can play a 10" Zil Bell -- it won't matter until the trumpet decides to adjust his/her time center.

I play weddings sometimes with a pretty heavy trumpeter in town. She'd play jazz 365 days a year if she could -- but she still knows how to be in the center of the beat when it's time to play a pop tune. And I thank her for this after every gig.
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Old 11-27-2017, 06:23 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

Thanks for all the replies so far!

Yes there is a conductor. It's his charts we're playing. He's a skilled musician and arranger, but I think somewhat new to conducting. Honestly, I haven't actually been watching him much except when I know I need something from him since im focusing on the charts (my sight reading is slightly rusty), so I don't know what he is or isn't doing. Do big band conductors usually do that thing like classical conductors do where they're like a 1/8 note ahead of the music? Seems like not.

The horns definitely drag on their own. Like I said, when there are sections that I drop out or drum-less intros,the tempo can easily drop way down. I have wondered if they felt like I was pushing too hard, but in listening to the recordings, it seems to me that I'm pretty close to right on the money. I know some of it is just the nature of many people trying to make sound at the same time, exponentially adding to the sonic "weight" in all aspects, like how traffic builds up on itself by its very nature because the person behind you doesn't know they can move until AFTER you've started moving, the delay of which builds up down the line so that your 2 second delay equals 30 seconds a half mile back.

I'll try using more appropriate equipment for the next rehearsal in a few weeks. My kit is definitely a bop-y kit and the main ride cymbal is pretty dry and trashy. I picked it because I thought the dryness would equal clarity, but maybe it's the wrong frequencies that are popping through and not cutting through the sounds of the players horns. I've got some drums that might fit better into the traditional big band concept as well.

I'll also see how close I can sit to the section leaders at least. Maybe if the lead trumpet and alto are closer that'll make a difference.

Thanks again!
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Old 11-27-2017, 06:31 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

Also, I haven't been really vocal about it with the band so far because of insecurity on my part. I'll work on getting over that in a still-not-being-a-jerk fashion.
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Old 11-27-2017, 08:21 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Originally Posted by ConcertTom View Post
Also, I haven't been really vocal about it with the band so far because of insecurity on my part. I'll work on getting over that in a still-not-being-a-jerk fashion.
That's how you get things done. Ask an honest question about what's going on and they will appreciate you for even questioning it.
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Old 11-27-2017, 12:07 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Originally Posted by Morrisman View Post
In my experience, the bass player has the greatest control over tempo in a jazz/big band setting. If you can find a bass player who locks in with your timing, the horns will have no option but to follow.

Another factor - I've heard a few big bands lately where the drummer is playing a tiny bop kit and low, trashy cymbals. Can't hear the cymbals at all, and barely hear the drums. The ride cymbal needs to heard clearly over the entire band, so make sure its one with some clarity - at least a medium, or a ping or similar. Save the the soft thin rides for playing in a trio.
I have to agree with these sentiments. In my experience, bass tends to be where time tends to lock in to in a big band situation. Which is something that if the bassist isn't really a jazz guy, usually can fall apart really quick. So I'd actually start by talking to the bass player, and seeing what you need to do to get you and them synced up.

I also agree with the cymbals thing, big band and combo jazz are two different things. You might need a ride with a bit more ping to it.

Lastly, it all falls on the conductor. If he's not doing his job and keeping things in check, then you might need to talk to him. I've never actually played in a big band where the conductor was conducting the whole time... if that is the case for yours, maybe that is what is dragging the horns down.... especially if like you said, you aren't watching him the whole time. Maybe it is a case where the conductor is slowing down, you aren't watching him, and they are?

Anyway, all in all I think you just need to go talk to some strategic people... tactfully. Just see exactly what the problem is. I would maybe start with the bass player, see if they notice what is going on. Maybe both of you can then talk to the conductor.
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Old 11-27-2017, 02:04 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Also, I haven't been really vocal about it with the band so far because of insecurity on my part. I'll work on getting over that in a still-not-being-a-jerk fashion.
Yeah, and you have to be careful, because to the section, or to the lead trumpet, dragging so much could be an intentional, cool thing to do; or, it could be the leader and/or section struggling with new and/or difficult material; or, it could be a somewhat lazy, jazz combo habit.

Maybe something like: "I know I'm (relatively) new to this group and music, and I dig how the horns are laying on the back side of the beat. But, frequently, from what I'm hearing, the section is laying back so much that they're an 8th note or more behind, which is more than what I'm used to hearing. If this is intentional, then cool, I'll just keep it all moving and I won't sweat it. But can one of the horn players record a small bit with their phone and see if there's too much laying back?"
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Old 11-27-2017, 07:30 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

Horns as a rule listen to your hihat on two and four. Make sure it can be clearly heard ( as others have stated). Your swing beat on the ride should prominently accent the quarter note. Dark ride cymbals that blend really do not work well for Big Bands. Stick definition should be clear. Have two ride sources as well if possible a ride with good stick definition and a secondary ride source other than the hihat.

You need to set up the horn figures so they are aware that they are coming up. it can be a simple as a quarter note played on the snare or bass drum prior to the horn figure.

Simplify yours fills, stick to eight notes or triplets that make it easy to understand where the next bar starts. Many drummers try to do interesting cool fills and the Horns have no idea where 1 is. Keep your fills simple and use dynamics too.
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Old 11-27-2017, 07:49 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Originally Posted by RickP View Post
Horns as a rule listen to your hihat on two and four. Make sure it can be clearly heard ( as others have stated). Your swing beat on the ride should prominently accent the quarter note. Dark ride cymbals that blend really do not work well for Big Bands. Stick definition should be clear. Have two ride sources as well if possible a ride with good stick definition and a secondary ride source other than the hihat.

You need to set up the horn figures so they are aware that they are coming up. it can be a simple as a quarter note played on the snare or bass drum prior to the horn figure.

Simplify yours fills, stick to eight notes or triplets that make it easy to understand where the next bar starts. Many drummers try to do interesting cool fills and the Horns have no idea where 1 is. Keep your fills simple and use dynamics too.
All good points! I already try to keep it simple but I'm going to try and practice the charts a little more before the next session so I can anticipate better.

I really like the quarter note on the snare before a horn line idea. Super simple, makes total sense, but something I haven't specifically thought about before.


Keep em coming! This is super helpful.
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Old 11-27-2017, 08:25 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

You need to rush and scream a lot. That works for me ;)
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Old 11-27-2017, 08:42 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

I feel so sorry for you. I know what it's like for everyone else to drag.

At church, there was a time where we all first started playing with a metronome; however, I was the only one who had it in his monitors because I was the only one with IEM's. The leader basically said, "If you aren't with him [me], you are wrong." To be honest it didn't get any better until others got IEM's in their heads with the click track.

I have no words of wisdom, but I do offer my sympathy.
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Old 11-27-2017, 08:58 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Originally Posted by ConcertTom View Post
All good points! I already try to keep it simple but I'm going to try and practice the charts a little more before the next session so I can anticipate better.

I really like the quarter note on the snare before a horn line idea. Super simple, makes total sense, but something I haven't specifically thought about before.


Keep em coming! This is super helpful.
Check out some of Mel Lewis' work - he is brilliant at setting up figures and plays excellent fills that really set up the band.
The Terry Gibbs Dream Band recordings are a must listen.
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Old 11-27-2017, 09:48 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

Just do as Buddy Rich would do:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=covU...annel=MetaSage
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Old 11-27-2017, 10:18 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

Do you ever bring it up in the horn-section's presence? "Hey guys, I've been feeling some sections dragging a bit, I want to make sure that everyone can hear me and nobody feels I'm rushing the beat or anything".

Something like that might get you some direct feedback. I tend to pull out these type questions early and often to keep things on the right track with a new group I'm not used to playing with.
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Old 11-27-2017, 11:30 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

I ditto the section lead especially the trumpet. It's also instructive recognize that are are leads and then there are soloists. Trumpet players tend to have spent hours in the shed every day. You can have a problem, if the section is following the solos and not the leads. Also it helps to recognize the need to breath. Maybe look at the phrasing add a crash at the end of the notes, and at the beginning of the next note.
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Old 11-28-2017, 02:23 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

I used a Paiste 2002 ride or a Zildjian 21" rock ride when I was with an 18 pc. band for three years. Listen to Ed Shaugnessy's cymbals you'll get the idea.
Also, we would not only record rehearsals and go back to critique, but one thing I liked to do was walk in on their "sectionals" and click two sticks together on two and four next to them as on the bandstand and we'd suss out the passages that were causing the dragging down of tempos.
One concept I see Tommy Igoe does with his band in rehearsals or before a gig is for him to keep time and everyone sing their parts.
The old-school saying was "if you can sing it you can play it" and all instrumentalists should get in the habit of working with a metronome more often.
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Old 11-28-2017, 04:06 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

If I'm playing with horns and I feel I'm fighting to keep them in lockstep with my tempo, I will emphasize the quarter note feel on the ride and keep a strong 2 and 4 going on the hi-hats. I will simplify my comping and use phrases that make it really easy to tell where we are within the form of the tune. Players who have weak time sometimes need to regularly hear "obvious" fills that end on 1, etc.

The bummer here is you're kind of dumbing down your playing to compensate for musicians who aren't that good. And as a result, it won't sound hip. But a band is only as strong as its weakest members, so if this is the hand you're being dealt, then you can only do what you can do and try to help. Those situations aren't much fun, in my experience.
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Old 11-28-2017, 04:23 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

I’m surprised the conductor isn’t all over their asses. The one that led the big band I played with was all over the time, but we had an excellent trumpet and Sax players that would often play planned solos and he had a heck of time keeping them two in line- they would start ad libbing and no one knew where to come in, and though at rehearsals the horns would behave during concerts they would often pick up the tempo- which was hilarious watching the conductor trying to get everyone in time. He’d throw his hands up and walk side stage as the band cut loose/ the audience actually loved that. I learned to keep on my toes and be the glue to blend all those rough spots that left everyone else lost.
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Old 11-28-2017, 04:58 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

I'd not feather the bass drum, get some Zildjian A's for a brighter sound and really keep it simple till they are up to snuff. Same as in any situation if the band is dragging or rushing or just nor playing their parts in time you gotta simplify to the point that there can be no question where the 1 is. sometimes that means doing the old school 20's four on everything for a bit.
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Old 11-28-2017, 09:59 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

None of the above replies (unless I missed it) mention the importance of a crisp hi hat chick. Listen to Jeff Hamilton or Dennis Mackrel and you'll see what I mean. No matter what he's doing elsewhere on the set, his 2 & 4 are very distinct.

If the hats are fuzzy on 2 & 4, the time with the other band members doesn't seem as locked in. At least that's what I've found.
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:48 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Sounds like my dad studied with Buddy Rich. Dad didn't drum, although he could blaze a brutal solo on the butt bongos.

TRY ME!

[The conductor should be having a discussion with them.]
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Old 11-30-2017, 02:23 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

Are you setting them up for their hits properly? It really helps if you're able to help with the big hits. They'll even thank you if you do it tastefully.
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Old 12-08-2017, 05:56 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

The next session is still a couple weeks away but I'm starting to go through my stuff to see what will work the best equipment wise. While I'm not planning on buying anything new to play in this band at this juncture, I think I may have some better options than what I was using. I actually have a 20" A Ride that had been cut into deeply to deal with some major cracks. It's on loan with a friend but I'm getting it back from him early next week to try out against some other contenders.

I'm also going to try out a couple different kicks and snares. If I have the energy or time, I'll try and post a video of some of the different options and see what your opinions are.

And I'm spending a little more time with the music beforehand so, as mentioned, I can better set up the horns.

Continued thanks for all the suggestions!
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Old 12-08-2017, 06:46 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

You know what's weird about his situation? It's the lack of understanding that it's everybody's job to play in time. To demonstrate, I mixed a band where the drummer was stuck in traffic, but we were all ready to go, so the band started without the drummer. You know who drives the band the most? The bass player. It was such cool thing to see and hear - I wished I recorded it. When the drummer finally did show up, we were all joking about "what's the noise? what's that noise?" The dancers didn't seem to notice that there was no drummer for the first set.

But if you take away that bass player laying down the quarter note lines, the whole thing falls apart.

So this falls back to the usual thing: drummer locked together with the bass player, and the two of you propel the band to play in time. I like listening to the entire band, but when I'm playing drums, I'm still locked together with the bass player. Think of the drums as the engine of the car, and the bass as the wheels of the car, making it roll down the road. You don't necessarily need the "correct" gear - contrasting Mel Lewis with Buddy Rich proves that point. You need to lock in with the bass player. If you're not locked, the band has the excuse to slip all over the place, and that's not cool (although the great horn sections play so well in time as to not need the rhythm section - be very afraid of those kinds of sections).

With your initial report of the horns always dragging, I'm wondering if the bass player is a confident player?
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Old 12-08-2017, 03:15 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

I'm wondering about the acoustics of the room. Sometimes in a bad room the horns are hearing your echo off a nearby wall louder than they're hearing you - so they play to the echo. Or more likely, you're hearing their echo off the wall the horns are facing. This would explain why the conductor is hearing everything together and you're hearing the horns behind the beat. Possible?
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Old 12-08-2017, 03:25 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

You could work out some choreography with the horns, it'll help keep them engaged when not playing, and if one is out of sync! well it's easy to see who is dragging.
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Old 12-08-2017, 04:25 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post
You know what's weird about his situation? It's the lack of understanding that it's everybody's job to play in time. .....

With your initial report of the horns always dragging, I'm wondering if the bass player is a confident player?
I understand it everyone's job, but knowing that many of these guys and gals are top level LA big band players, I'm taking it upon myself to do as much for my part as I can.

As I mentioned before, the bass player from the last session (and the upcoming session, thank god) was someone I've played with a lot before and he was locked in with me, which was a HUGE improvement over previous sessions, but there were still noticeable moments of differentiating time between the rhythm section and the horns. I can blame them all I want and talk with them about it, but assuming a general respect for their abilities, I have the most power to improve things with my own actions.
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Old 12-08-2017, 06:44 PM
brentcn brentcn is offline
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post
With your initial report of the horns always dragging, I'm wondering if the bass player is a confident player?
Drummer and bass player can glued together, it doesn't matter. If the horns want to drag, they can.

Think of it like separate cars traveling. All the cars can travel at the same rate (speed), but some cars might be behind, and others ahead. In the case, the horns sound like they're behind. They're choosing to orient themselves this way, most likely due to the nature of the section leader's playing.

No matter what you play, or how well you play it, a horn player (or any other musician) can drag if he/she wants to, out of habit or out or artistic interpretation.

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This would explain why the conductor is hearing everything together and you're hearing the horns behind the beat. Possible?
Not unless the room is REALLY long, empty, and with a flat wall at the opposite end. The drummer will hear the horns, because the sound will bounce off the side walls, music stands, other musicians, etc. Like the OP said, the horns are sometimes more than an 8th note behind.

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I have the most power to improve things with my own actions.
Yup. There might not be anything you can do about it. I've had this conversation with a good friend and great trumpet player. Essentially, what I was told was "that's the way I play".
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Old 12-08-2017, 07:04 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Essentially, what I was told was "that's the way I play".
Right. I think I know a few guitar players and other drummers who would adopt this excuse given the chance.

I'm just a dragging player, man, that's how I roll! I play behind the rest of the band for that unique "off" sound!
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Old 12-08-2017, 07:53 PM
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You could work out some choreography with the horns, it'll help keep them engaged when not playing, and if one is out of sync! well it's easy to see who is dragging.
As much as this is funny, I do play in another large band where everyone standing steps together (Left foot on 1), and it really makes a difference.
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Old 12-10-2017, 11:05 PM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

Hey Tom - yes, this is something I really think about! I think it's good to be open to a couple of things - firstly try not to point blame to anyone as the goal is the same for everyone to get things happening, secondly take responsibility as much as you can for the time (without getting too down about yourself) and do as much positive stuff as you can to improve at leading the band. One way I work on this is to use a click with my weekly big band and to use it in different ways - for example, all the way through the tune, then maybe halving the clicks, or running it for count ins and turning it off then on again later to check how we're doing. For my regular band it works well and the bassist is a fan as it helps him to work on his time too. I wouldn't do this with most other bands though.. It works well in a band that rehearses regularly with no conductor and the band can rely on you to always count in tunes at exactly the correct tempo - and it also gets them used to playing their soli sections exactly at the right tempo and I tell them the tempo markings so they can practise at home.

I've found it's a really good way to work on getting used to leading the band, as you get more comfortable playing ahead of people (or behind if they're rushing) and you get more confident at being the drummer with 'perfect time' then you can slowly start phasing out the click as you want to, then it's all coming from you. I think this could be controversial with some drummers and bands - but it has worked well for me and is worth considering (although I'm still constantly thinking about and working on keeping the time so it's probably something that never ends!).. At least I'm not sitting scratching my head about what to do to stop things dragging like I used to. Another useful thing is to record and listen back to rehearsals. Also speak with the bassist about what they think - a solid bassist drives a big band just as much, or sometimes even more, than the drummer.. if you come apart, the band will usually go with the bass.

Caroline
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Old 12-11-2017, 12:21 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

Maybe you could do the old James Brown trick and have separate rhythm section and horn section practices. He would drill each section separately and have the horn section do very rhythmic/shot oriented parts to make them very conscious of time and also make them tight as hell. Drummer pulls double duty, hitting both the rhythm and horn section practices.
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Old 12-11-2017, 01:37 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Originally Posted by ConcertTom View Post
As much as this is funny, I do play in another large band where everyone standing steps together (Left foot on 1), and it really makes a difference.
When I was in college, all the percussionists had to “dance” in orchestra rehearsals, because our conductor couldn’t keep the group together. By dancing we could tell which way they were tending and then adjust.

That conductor did NOT get tenure, thank goodness.
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Old 12-11-2017, 03:51 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

I dunno,maybe the obvious and tell them they are having timing problems.

As the cliche goes ,lead ,follow or get out the way.
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Old 12-13-2017, 10:49 AM
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Default Re: Keeping big band horns from dragging

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Originally Posted by Morrisman View Post
In my experience, the bass player has the greatest control over tempo in a jazz/big band setting. If you can find a bass player who locks in with your timing, the horns will have no option but to follow.

Another factor - I've heard a few big bands lately where the drummer is playing a tiny bop kit and low, trashy cymbals. Can't hear the cymbals at all, and barely hear the drums. The ride cymbal needs to heard clearly over the entire band, so make sure its one with some clarity - at least a medium, or a ping or similar. Save the the soft thin rides for playing in a trio.
This, I used a 20" Heavy K ride for years in a big band for precisely that reason.
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