Monday, March 8, 2021

Be like Cannonball ( or Equivalent )

I started my day listening to this amazing recording…..


Of course, Jimmy Cobb is fantastic on this as he always is, but listening to Cannonball Adderley himself got me to thinking. Adderley always has such a beautiful tone and is so smooth and free throughout the alto's range. That lead me to postulate, what would the Cannonball of drums be like? (No fat-shaming, thanks!) The concept of using ideas from one instrument and applying it to another is called transference, so I'll share some thoughts on that now.
Having a tone like Cannonball except applied to drums? Well, I think it would involve having a big, warm, sound at all dynamic levels, and to never sound like we're fighting the drums. More like we're dancing elegantly with them! :) 
Also, what about Cannonball's ability to play over his entire range? Well, on drums it would mean being fluent with a variety of stickings to get around with our hands smoothly. As well, I think integrating rhythms between hands and feet would go a long way to achieving this.
Finally, Cannonball's time is always beautiful and expressive, so we need to do whatever we can to replicate that! 

In closing, I would encourage everyone to find non-drumming instrumentalists (or vocalists, for that matter) and use them as inspiration for what YOU want to achieve on the drums. So whether you're into Yo Yo Ma, Curtis Fuller, or Eddie Van Halen, they all have something to offer you toward your conception.

And as a postscript, I needed to post this because it's so weird. Here's Cannonball Adderley, along with Jose Feliciano, guest starring on an episode of "Kung Fu" in the 70s…..

Someone should do a playlist of Jazz musicians doing weird cameos in movies and TV. This and Elvin in Zachariah would be a great start! 

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