Thursday, June 7, 2012

Using space in solos and grooves

This is a prelude to a post I am working on for my Music for Drummers blog. The drummer is Frankie Dunlop, who is one of my top three favorite Thelonious Monk drummers. The other two are Shadow Wilson and Ben Riley. Dunlop's playing clearly and strongly shows Shadow Wilson's influence. Like Ahmad Jamal on piano, Dunlop makes excellent use of space in his solos, and his dynamic range is wide and musical. He also displays some of Max Roach's influence in that he also plays melodically.

Here are two clips of Dunlop's solos:

This performance shows his beautiful grooves:

What did it take to be a drummer for Monk? Or any member of his ensembles? Here are some of his notes on the subject - you be the judge:

If you are truly interested in digging deeper, Dunlop's main influence, Shadow Wilson, can be heard onThelonious Monk Quartet With John Coltrane Live at Carnegie Hall. Keep checking Music for Drummers for the expanded post on Monk, his music and his drummers.

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