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Saturday, November 9, 2019

Guitar And The Wind - Barry Galbraith

Bull Market
Guitar And The Wind
Mood Jazz In Hi-Fi
Barry Galbraith
Guitar Solos with Flute and Instrumental Accompaniment
Cover Photo: Ray Pinney
Decca Records Series J9200
DL 9200

From the back cover: When I (Burt Korall) question him (Galbraith) about his root source of a whole generation of guitarists, Charlie Christian, Barry put more light on the subject.

"Every guitarist since the early forties has been influenced by what Charlie did. He made the guitar an adult... It seems to me that practitioners of the jazz guitar were building to his arrival.

"Lonnie Johnson, Eddie Lang, and George Van Eps (George influenced me early in my career, and continues to impress with his block chordal style) made important contributions to the guitar's growth as a jazz instrument. But, for all the depth and meaning of their contributions, Charlie was the one who turned on the "juice", so to speak, and gave the guitar a modern identity.

"Lester Young left his mark on Christian. However, I don't think Charlie was ever conscious of it. Like Lester, he inclined to lone lines, a variety of well-placed accents, and an exploratory quality that is so typical of 'the great ones'.

"If you hear Christian in my playing, it's no accident. Techniques he fathered have become a part of me, for I have admired his work since first exposed to it, and frequently go back to his records for the enjoyment they give me.

"I would feel a sense of fulfillment when and if my way of saying things took on the artless, spontaneous feeling that was Charlie's calling card."

Galbraith, as a person, is unintrusive yet decisive; unassuming yet authoritative; and like many jazz musicians, his instrument has proven more than an adjunct to his personality, but THE friendly medium through which the flow of his thoughts find most compatible expression.

As some of his colleagues have noted, Galbraith has a 'natural' flare that lends the impression of the 'easy and everyday' to the musically valuable or difficult. Whether playing at a social gathering, on a job or recording date, he is 'inside his horn", fully concentrated, oblivious to extraneous bother.

Self taught, Barry has proceeded through the hallowed hals of the school of experience, remembering and assembling, pointing up, underlining the important along the way.

"I spent a lot of time with the big bands (Norvo, McIntyre, Thornhill) in the 'forties and learned a lot about 'time'. My jazz blowing over the last couple of years, however, did the most to finalize, enlarge my perspective concerning the pulse, and playing, in general.

"Association with the Claude Thornhill band in the early and mid 'forties was an education. The band was a feast of sound and nuance, and playing with the band night after night stimulated my sense of musical color.

"Arranger Gil Evans, the man who brought the modern conception to the band, blending the identifying sound and feeling of Thornhill with modern ideas, was a big help to me. He was and is so knowing; perhaps the most adult person I have ever known."

A decade has gone by since Barry's last stint with Thornhill. Like many of the big band musicians, he has gone on to do studio work (radio-TV) and a plethora of recordings of various types. In addition, he has kept abreast of developments in jazz, constantly listening, thinking, and as a result, growing.

This album is shaped to delineate a variety of moods in addition to the softer, romantic feeling that has, by constant association, assumed priority in definition of the word, mood.

Galbraith is found in three basic instrumental frames.

On January 16, 1958, Barry surrounded himself with four trombones – Urbie Green, Chauncey Welsch, Frank Rehak and Dick Hixson (bass trombone); flutist Bobby Jaspar; Milt Hinton, bass; Osie Johnson, drums and Ed Costa, piano. The arrangement for the date were written by Billy Byers, prolific in many recording areas, but especially deft in scoring for trombones. – Burt Korall

From Billboard - April 21, 1958: A nicely varied set spotlighting the artist in several approaches – all of them effective. When Galbraith has the melody or is improvising, he shows a fresh, inventive style. In backing other instruments, harmonically or percussively, he also shines. His admirers will find this one of his best efforts. His style can be traced to Charlie Christian and George Van Eps. Small combo and larger group selections are done with equal good taste.

Bull Market - Billy Byers
Portrait Of Jennie - Gordon Burdge - J. Russel Robinson
Judy's Jaunt - Al Cohn
Nina Never Knew - Milton - Drake - Louis Alter
Walking (Down) - Carpenter
A Gal In Calico - Robin - Schwartz
I Like To Recognize The Time - Richard Rodgers - Harold Arlen
Love I For The Very Young - David Raskin
Holiday - Al Cohn
Ya Gotta Have Rhythm - Osie Johnson
What An I Here For - Duke Ellington

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