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EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Gary Burton: Seven Songs for Quartet and Chamber Orchestra

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While there is still a handful of ECM titles from vibraphonist Gary Burton that remain unreleased on CD, perhaps the most unique of the bunch is Seven Songs for Quartet and Chamber Orchestra, originally issued by the German label in 1974 and the first of two collaborations with Zimbabwe-born, British-resident composer/pianist/trombonist Michael Gibbs. The similarly intriguing In the Public Interest (Polydor, 1974) is a more conventionally configured large ensemble with horns, reeds, piano, bass and drums; Seven Songs, on the other hand, remains the more unusual of the two, teaming Burton's quartet with members of Hamburg, Germany's NDR-Symphony Orchestra, performing ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

The New Gary Burton Quartet: Guided Tour

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For some, retirement means winding down and enjoying what life has to offer, after a lifetime spent with the daily grind of making a living. With most musicians, however, while making a living has been a not insignificant challenge, making music can hardly be called a daily grind; it's work, to be sure, but it's also play. Still, for those who have-- either by choice, necessity or both--engaged in a career that's a mix of education, recording and gigging, retirement can mean clearing the plate of at least one of those responsibilities.Such is the case with vibraphonist Gary ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Chick Corea and Gary Burton: Burlington, VT, October 19, 2012

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Chick Corea and Gary Burton with the Harlem String QuartetFlynn Center for the Performing ArtsBurlington, VTOctober 19, 2012The sound itself was absolutely sublime as it emanated from the instruments of pianist Chick Corea and vibraphonist Gary Burton on October 19, 2012 at The Flynn Center in Burlington, Vermont. The ringing clarity of the notes pealing from Corea was perfectly in proportion to the warm glowing flow of sound as it arose from Burton. During those moments it mattered less if the hypnotic sonority was the result of the impromptu chemistry that the duo discovered at ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Chick Corea & Gary Burton: Chick Corea & Gary Burton: Hot House

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The creative connection upon which vibraphonist Gary Burton ruminates to such length, in his essay for Hot House, is evident from the first instrumental exchanges with longtime collaborator, pianist Chick Corea. Burton and Corea complete each others' thoughts throughout “Can't We Be Friends," sounding as effortless and natural--arguably more so--as the seamless improvisations that earmarked their very first recorded project together forty years ago, Crystal Silence (ECM, 1972).The symbiosis recurs throughout the ten tracks here, which span standards from pianist Bill Evans' “Time Remembered" to The Beatles' “Eleanor Rigby," where the duo merely hints at the famous tune, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Chick Corea & Gary Burton: Hot House

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With a partnership lasting longer than most marriages, pianist Chick Corea and vibraphonist Gary Burton know what it takes to keep things fresh. Since the release of Crystal Silence (ECM, 1973), they have toured virtually every year, but record far less frequently, with only six albums to their credit, most recently The New Crystal Silence (Concord, 2008). With the pianist especially busy these days--his The Continents: Music for Jazz Quartet & Chamber Orchestra (Deutsche Grammophon, 2012) just out and a live set from his 2011 Return to Forever IV tour, The Mothership Returns (Concord, 2012), on the near horizon--anytime Corea ...

LIVE REVIEWS

New Gary Burton Quartet: San Diego, California, October 12, 2011

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New Gary Burton Quartet Neurosciences Institute San Diego, CA October 12, 2011 Vibraphone master Gary Burton has returned to the guitar quartet, a format that has served him well since his early recordings with Larry Coryell in the '60s, and especially with Pat Metheny in the '70s. His current group was born about a year ago, when he began touring with drummer Antonio Sanchez, double bassist Scott Colley, and protégé Julian Lage, a guitarist of infinite potential. A scheduling conflict led to an important, one-night only substitution--Sanchez had a prior commitment ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Gary Burton Quartet: New York, NY, September 21, 2011

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Gary Burton QuartetBlue NoteNew York, NYSeptember, 21, 2011 Lionel Hampton carved out a place for the vibraphone in a swing setting, and Milt Jackson brought the instrument into bop, but Gary Burton remains the guru and guiding light in virtually every other aspect for vibraphonists and fans the world over. As a visionary educator, he helped to make Berklee the place to go for aspiring jazzers, and as a performer, he's redefined the very way the vibraphone is played. His four-mallet grip and stunning technique pointed the way to a more pianistic approach for ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

The New Gary Burton Quartet: Common Ground

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In a career now entering its sixth decade, vibraphonist Gary Burton has participated in plenty of one-off recordings, paying tribute to everyone from tango master Astor Piazzolla to mallet-men who have come before, like Lionel Hampton and Milt Jackson. His discography has been nothing if not unfailingly consistent--every recording meticulously conceived and flawlessly executed. A project, perhaps, rather than an ongoing concern, but Burton's last record, Live (Concord, 2009), remains as exhilarating a concert recording as the vibraphonist has done, bringing guitarist Pat Metheny and bassist Steve Swallow back from his mid-'70s groups, with newcomer/drummer Antonio Sanchez along for the ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Chick Corea / Gary Burton: San Diego, USA, March 1, 2011

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Chick Corea / Gary BurtonAnthology,San Diego, CAMarch 1, 2011 Pianist Chick Corea and vibraphonist Gary Burton first met in the late 1960s, as Burton was leaving, and Corea was joining saxophonist Stan Getz's band. Together, they released one of the most astonishing records of the 1970s, Crystal Silence (ECM, 1973). Since then, they have reunited several times, expanding their original concept of piano/vibes duet to a new plateau. Tuesday's concert at Anthology was the first of a two-night residency, which is somewhat unusual for the San Diego venue. The building was ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Gary Burton's Arrival: Celebrating 50 Years

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Gary Burton's Arrival: Celebrating 50 YearsBerklee Performance CenterBoston, MAApril 8, 2010 When was the last time you saw a concert that featured Gary Burton, Mick Goodrick, Abe Laboriel, Harry Blazer, Joe Lovano, John Scofield, Steve Swallow, Antonio Sanchez, Tiger Okoshi, Jim Odgren, Donny McCaslin, Makoto Ozone, Julian Lage, Vadim Neselovskyi, Luques Curtis, James Williams, and Chick Corea? Unless you were at the Berklee Performance Center on Thursday, April 8, the answer is never. Billed as “Gary Burton's Arrival: Celebrating 50 Years," the sold-out performance in Boston featured four groups that Gary ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Chick Corea/Gary Burton: Crystal Silence - The ECM Recordings 1972-79

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Chick Corea/Gary Burton Crystal Silence - The ECM Recordings 1972-79 ECM Records 2009

It's a story that's been told before, but it's worth repeating. Pianist Chick Corea and vibraphonist Gary Burton were performing individually at a 1972 Munich festival, and ended up as the only two artists at a late night jam session. While the two had attempted working together in the 1960s, it was in a quartet context that never seemed to work--in no small part due to the challenge of combining two chordal instruments without getting in each other's way.

INTERVIEWS

Gary Burton: Forging Ahead

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“I got started in Nashville and knew a lot of the country musicians. I got my first record contract from Chet Atkins who saw me playing in a local club in Nashville and who decided to talk to RCA and get them to offer me a long-term contract," says this renowned musician born in a small Indiana town, less than 300 miles from the country music capital of the world.

The musician speaking isn't Crystal Gayle, the popular country singer who was raised in an Indiana small town, nor is it John Mellencamp, one of Indiana's favored songs ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Gary Burton / Pat Metheny / Steve Swallow / Antonio Sanchez: Quartet Live

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It's rare that a group can reunite to create what it had decades ago while remaining completely fresh and relevant. When guitarist Pat Metheny regrouped the Gary Burton Quartet--his training ground, beginning in his late-teens, from 1974- 1977--as one of his By Invitation performances at the 2005 Festival International de Jazz de Montreal, it was clear that this was something that couldn't be a one-shot deal. The quartet--featuring original members Steve Swallow (electric bass) and Burton (vibes) alongside drummer Antonio Sanchez (a newcomer to the group, but an ever-present partner with Metheny since the guitarist's Speaking of Now (Warner Bros., ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Chick Corea & Gary Burton: The New Crystal Silence

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The original Crystal Silence (recorded in 1972) was--and still is--one of the strongest early releases on the then relatively new ECM Records. Pianist Chick Corea and vibraphonist Gary Burton have been working as a dynamic duo for over 35 years now, releasing many CDs in duo form and with various ensembles. The playing on the original Crystal Silence is almost telepathic and the scope of the compositional direction wide, enough to produce a riveting album never hampered by the 'limited' orchestration of just piano and vibraphone. The New Crystal Silence seeks not merely to revisit the past, ...



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