Saturday, April 30, 2016


The Jethro Tull version of Bach's Bouree is one of my musical touchstones. It was the first thing I'd learned on the flute (at least the melody I mean). And as much as television shows like HBO's Vinyl exude raw hatred for Tull, the jazz version of the bouree is absolutely brilliant.

And that brilliance would be completely absent if it weren't for the bass part. Glenn Cornick was an amazing player and the bass solo does one of the things one does not normally expect from a bass solo: it's musical.

A kind of study of theme and variation, using the counterpoint to the melody as the starting place (which, c'mon, that's awesome), the bass part actually goes into freaking chords. Chords, man. Chords. Chords on bass are notoriously muddy.  But Cornick, genius that he was, created a whole subject/answer jazz/rock classical/modern simple/elegant part with this piece.
The simple/elegant part of it makes it surprisingly tricky to play.
The best tab I can find for it is on Songsterr.  Some of the positions, however, seem suspect to me. There are some jumps which seem unnecessary and looking at videos of Cornick playing it, he doesn't seem to be playing it that way.
But it's a good start. And tablature is not a terrible way to read either. There are some time things which confuse me somewhat. But I'm getting over them.

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