Experience has made me pretty adept at discerning which parts of any given performance are composed and which are improvised. It’s generally easier to tell than it should be. Not that it necessarily matters; it’s the end result that counts. Chances are, however, if the composed and improvised don’t integrate well, the music probably won’t be very interesting. Composer/trumpeter Taylor Ho Bynum does an admirable job on Other Stories [Three Suites] in making that line as invisible as possible, creating a series of well conceived and executed suites that make an organic-sounding use of organization and spontaneity.
Become a JazzTimes member to explore our complete archive of interviews, profiles, columns, and reviews written by music's best journalists and critics.