It has been said that Miles Davis used to tell his musicians not to play the idea, or the note, they were thinking of; rather, they should skip that idea altogether and play the next note. Greg Bryant’s (1979) and Paul Horton’s (1978) most recent release as Concurrence is a compilation of “next notes.” Although these musicians’ notes and ideas direct the listener to the music to come, they are also ideas rooted in history and thus, lay out a clear trajectory from past to present (and beyond).
Both Bryant and Horton are avid listeners --they know the notes and the ideas that have come before them and they know the rules, as well as how to bend and break them. The rules, or perhaps more accurately stated, the histories, are recognized, yet Concurrence pushes toward the unknown in the this collection.
How does this “push” reflect on the current state of improvisational music? Have these two individuals been obligated by the music industry to pull together notes and write them on paper to perform to perfection in a single recording session? Hardly; though not because it is beyond their capabilities. As not only a fan of their music, but also as a friend, I have witnessed the collective brilliance that occurs when Bryant and Horton share the same musical space. Whether it be standards, funk, or even a Radiohead-influenced performance, Greg Bryant and Paul Horton move beyond notes on a page and explore the concurrence of rhythm, harmony, melody, sound, conscientiousness, society, community, and spirituality. In other words, they celebrate the art and passion and wisdom of collective musical composition and improvisation.
This brief collection of songs contains an almost infinite amount of possibilities. Without going into too much details --because that is the joy of listening!--, it is important to recognize the direction in which these two young men are pushing their music. They aren’t playing the same songs of old, trying to renovate them for sale. They aren’t relying on shock value to get a potential listener to turn their ear for a moment. They are playing music and, inversely, music is playing them. I hope you enjoy these tracks as much as I, and that you hear the “other music” recorded here that reflects the past, present, and future of improvisational music.
released September 11, 2015
Paul Horton: Nord Electro Piano, Hammond Melodica
Greg Bryant: Boulder Creek Acoustic Electric Bass Guitar
Recorded & Mixed In Nashville, Tennessee in December of 2014 by Maurice Barrett.
All Compositions Performed & Improvised Spontaneously by Paul Horton & Greg Bryant (C) 2014 Concurrence
Cover Design and Photo by Paul Horton
More about Concurrence at:
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