|Visit Us On FB
The same problem presents itself in Measure 5, when Teagarden plays notes that suggest he is still thinking in terms of a G 9th. This is one of those instances when the ear reacts in terms of an overall harmonic pattern, of the long sweeping phrase with which the soloist leads the way from its opening chord (G 9th) to its last (E 9th) with such authority and conviction that the degree of adherence to the intermediate stepping stones becomes unimportant.
Just as Teagarden's style and instrument combine to optimum impact in a slow blues mood, the personality and instrumental vehicle of Benny Goodman lend themselves most effectively to an up tempo, in which his fluency reaches an exciting peak of improvisatory expression. The clarinet, though every artist from Barney Bigard to Jimmy GiufTre has found it ideal as a blues medium in the middle and lower registers, is an instrument that brings out more fully in its upper reaches and at faster tempi the advantages of which the technical perfectionist can avail himself.
Slipped Disc, recorded by the Goodman Sextet, in 1945, emphasizes the genius of Goodman in a perfect blend of theme, tempo, accompanying personnel and mood. Taken at 60 measures per minute, it is based on a time-tested chord sequence known since the days of King Porter Stomp. The excerpt shown occurs immediately after Teddy Wilson's piano solo. In the first four measures Goodman plays the same phrases twice, but with just enough variation (in the pair of opening notes) to create an effect of symmetry without redundancy. Measures 4 through 7 again show the value of repetition, this time finding variety through rhythmic instead of melodic changes—on the first statement it is the opening note (D) that is held longest, on the second statement the entire phrase is played in two beats (Measure 6, beats 2 and 3) while on the third statement the C Sharp is held unexpectedly.
Measures 8-12 form one long and incredibly ingenious phrase, dipping suddenly at the start into the nether reaches of the chalumeau (lower) register and coursing upward to the D, almost three octaves higher, in Measure 10, then continuing in eighth notes until the long sequence is broken fittingly by a syncopated phrase in 12.