Charlie Parker and Confirmation

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I’ve been playing and studying and analysing and theorising and generally grokking Charlie Parker Omnibook solos for a long time. Every time I open the OB – to any CP solo, it doesn’t make a difference which one it might be – something amazing leaps out.

Charlie Parker played and recorded Confirmation in F. Last night – I was playing the head in the key of D. Putting the usual things into unusual keys often brings out stuff we might not otherwise see.

The thing about Confirmation in the Omnibook: It’s the first transcription in the book. It easily gives the impression that keys to Charlie Parker’s world live in that specific tune.

If only.

The Art Of Bebop – The Art Of Superimposing

The art of bebop is an art of superimposing simple things over simple things. Then when simple things get heard in combination the results aren’t that simple. It’s a “the-whole-is-greater-than-the-sum-of-the-parts” kind of thing.

For example: a Dm7 chord with a 9th and an 11th – the name of it is itself a way to look at it – as a 7th chord with a 9th and an 11th. But in Charlie Parker’s music so-called chord upper structures can can just as well be simple triads. Meaning a Dm7 chord with a 9th and an 11th could be a C major triad sitting on top of a D minor triad.

Look at online essays by Steve Coleman where he describes this sort of thing. Take a look at Barry Harris’ theory system and see how it works there. What they describe basically comes down to superimposing simple things on top of simple things.

Confirmation Of Simplicity

I’ve been playing and studying and analysing and theorising and generally grokking Charlie Parker Omnibook solos for a long time. Every time I open the OB – to any CP solo, it doesn’t make a difference which one it might be – something amazing leaps out.

Charlie Parker played and recorded Confirmation in F.  Last night – I was playing the head in the key of D. Putting the usual things into unusual keys often brings out stuff we might not otherwise see.

The thing about Confirmation in the Omnibook: It’s the first transcription in the book. It easily gives the impression that keys to Charlie Parker’s world live in that specific tune.

If only.

The Art Of Bebop – The Art Of Superimposing

The art of bebop is an art of superimposing simple things over simple things. Then when simple things get heard in combination the results aren’t that simple. It’s a “the-whole-is-greater-than-the-sum-of-the-parts” kind of thing.

For example: a Dm7 chord with a 9th and an 11th – the name of it is itself a way to look at it – as a 7th chord with a 9th and an 11th. But in Charlie Parker’s music so-called chord upper structures can can just as well be simple triads. Meaning a Dm7 chord with a 9th and an 11th could be a C major triad sitting on top of a D minor triad.

Look at online essays by Steve Coleman where he describes this sort of thing. Take a look at Barry Harris’ theory system and see how it works there. What they describe basically comes down to superimposing simple things on top of simple things.

Confirmation Of Simplicity

Picture

Confirmation begins with an Fmaj7 chord. The head outlines an F major triad with a passing tone. Then there’s an Em7b5 chord with passing tones. That leads to 2 notes from of an A maj triad. It all fits perfectly well over the Fmaj7 chord

It’s confirmation of a simple thing – a simple idea: In bebop simple things go over simple things. It’s what comes from that that isn’t so simple.

Confirmation begins with an Fmaj7 chord. The head outlines an F major triad with a passing tone. Then there’s an Em7b5 chord with passing tones. That leads to 2 notes from of an A maj triad. It all fits perfectly well over the Fmaj7 chord

It’s confirmation of a simple thing – a simple idea: In bebop simple things go over simple things. It’s what comes from that that isn’t so simple.