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Rock ’n’ Press Rolls

JT’s Managing Editor introduces November 2010 issue by making connection between jazz, drums and rock’n’roll

Lenny White. Cindy Blackman. Tom Rainey. Barry Altschul. Terri Lyne Carrington: This is our annual drum issue, if you hadn’t already guessed. Admittedly, we don’t always adhere so closely to our scheduled themes, but this book is the real deal: a rhythmically minded edition all around, from the features to our Opening Chorus departments to Gearhead and even our monthly columns.

Two of those columns deal with opposing sides of jazz’s percussive sensibility. In Solo, Fernando Gonzalez catches up with the groundbreaking pianist, composer and bandleader Guillermo Klein at his home in Buenos Aires. Klein, as anyone who’s heard his Sunnyside albums Domador de Huellas and Filtros can verify, is the architect of an arrestingly unique music, one that, as he tells Gonzalez, doesn’t have too much use for received wisdom or traditional swing drumming. Instead, Klein prefers to couple postbop harmony with the folkloric rhythms of his native Argentina, or, often astonishingly, invent his own feels. I recall one concert in Washington, D.C., in which Klein directed his Los Guachos band through polyrhythmic ensemble sections that suggested a DJ remixing in real time. It was a mind-blowingly skillful display that was also utterly musical.

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