By Paul Combs
Dameronia is the 1st authoritative biography of Tadd Dameron, an incredible and extensively influential determine in jazz heritage as some of the most major composers and arrangers of jazz, swing, bebop, and massive band. He prepared for names like count number Basie, Artie Shaw, Jimmie Lunceford, and Dizzy Gillespie and performed with Bull Moose Jackson and Benny Golson. This ebook units out to explain Dameron's position within the improvement of jazz within the post–World conflict II period. It additionally makes an attempt to make clear the tragedy of his retreat from the heart of jazz job within the Fifties. through tracing Dameron's profession, one reveals that till 1958, whilst he was once incarcerated for drug similar offenses, he was once on the leading edge of advancements in jazz, occasionally watching for traits that may no longer increase totally for a number of years. Dameron used to be additionally a major impression on numerous high-profile musicians, together with Miles Davis, Benny Golson, and Frank Foster. Dameron was once a really inner most guy, and whereas in a few elements of his lifestyles he'll most likely stay an enigma, this booklet manages to offer an intimate portrait of his lifestyles at a number of key levels: the peak of his profession in 1949 and the short yet efficient interval among his liberate from felony and his death.
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Extra resources for Dameronia: The Life and Music of Tadd Dameron
Rachmaninoff Jumps,” the alternate title for “Society Steps Out,” leads one to expect a swing treatment of a theme by the Russian composer and pianist. Indeed, Sergei Rachmaninoff ’s “Prelude in C-sharp Minor” caught the ear of various jazz musicians, from the Casa Loma Orchestra to Charles Mingus. Usually a substantial portion of the beginning of the work is quoted, but in “Society Steps Out” Dameron makes only a motivic reference to Rachmaninoff ’s Prelude in the introduction before presenting a thirty-two-bar AABA tune that hovers between C minor and its relative E♭ major.
24 Tadd may also have been backing up singers in some of the smaller rooms and playing and singing himself with the kid bands of his contemporaries, such as Freddie Webster and others from the fine music program at Central High. In an article for the February 1948 issue of Record Changer, Dameron dated the beginning of his professional career as 1938, but this seems unlikely. Perhaps he was not quite able to support himself by playing music until then and did not consider himself completely professional until he could do so.
In the instrumental ballad “A-La Bridges,” Dameron again uses a dominant seventh chord built on the flatted seventh degree of the key, A♭7 in the key of B♭ . œ œ b œ œ œ œ ‰œ œ . œJ œ œ œ œ œ œ ‰ œ œ œ œ œ # œ ‰ Jœ œ . Jœ œ œ b œ œ œ œ œ n œ ˙ œ œ œ b c ‰ œ & Ex. 1 F 3 Fig. 1. Ensemble line from the beginning of the second chorus of Dameron’s arrangement of his own “My Dream,” written for Harlan Leonard. around. Then, in the bridge, the A♭7 takes on the function usually assigned to the subdominant, E♭ in this case.
Dameronia: The Life and Music of Tadd Dameron by Paul Combs