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Hey all.
First of all, I don’t play anything. I do well just playing Youtube videos much less an instrument. i did take mandolin lessons about 12-14 years ago and could play the important chords in bluegrass and some very basic picking on bluegrass stand by’s. Been thinking of getting another mandolin and starting it up again. All this boredom has me wanting to do something. Getting old though.

Anyway, what I am really curious about is wondering how the musicians in the accompanying band know exactly when to come back in and play with the soloist.

I started thinking about this while watching Buddy Rich playing drums on the many Tonight Show with Johnny Carson he appeared on.
The song would start off with the band and he playing the song...always jazz. Then the band would stop and he’d take off on these huge, wandering, incredible solos that often lasted near 5 minutes and then without missing a beat, the band would come back in perfectly and they’d finish the song.

There were no players flipping pages following along. How do they know when it’s time to for them to all come back in and where they come in at? Is Buddy giving them a signal or some type of heads up that they know signals them to come in?

If it were any other kind of music I could understand how the others would know. Seeing as jazz is highly improvisational and the players wander all over the place depending on how they want to play a song, it’s seems very hard to know when the right time is for the band. By the way, this is him playing with the Tonight Show band, not his own band that’s used to him and know how he’s gonna play.

Please explain it so I can quit wondering about it.

thank you
Larry
 

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If they have played together for any time, they just know. It’s a subtle communication within the band. Almost like knowing when it is your time to speak in a conversation.
 

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Ba-nan-nah-nuh
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Hey all.
First of all, I don’t play anything. I do well just playing Youtube videos much less an instrument. i did take mandolin lessons about 12-14 years ago and could play the important chords in bluegrass and some very basic picking on bluegrass stand by’s. Been thinking of getting another mandolin and starting it up again. All this boredom has me wanting to do something. Getting old though.

Anyway, what I am really curious about is wondering how the musicians in the accompanying band know exactly when to come back in and play with the soloist.

I started thinking about this while watching Buddy Rich playing drums on the many Tonight Show with Johnny Carson he appeared on.
The song would start off with the band and he playing the song...always jazz. Then the band would stop and he’d take off on these huge, wandering, incredible solos that often lasted near 5 minutes and then without missing a beat, the band would come back in perfectly and they’d finish the song.

There were no players flipping pages following along. How do they know when it’s time to for them to all come back in and where they come in at? Is Buddy giving them a signal or some type of heads up that they know signals them to come in?

If it were any other kind of music I could understand how the others would know. Seeing as jazz is highly improvisational and the players wander all over the place depending on how they want to play a song, it’s seems very hard to know when the right time is for the band. By the way, this is him playing with the Tonight Show band, not his own band that’s used to him and know how he’s gonna play.

Please explain it so I can quit wondering about it.

thank you
Larry
The lead will tell you by emphasising a note or just the tiniest flick of a chord and you just KNOW.

It's not all that cerebral - it's kinda instinctive.
 

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I've played drums my whole life. I can always tell when Buddy is bringing the band back in. As stated, when you've played together, you just know.
 

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Hey all.
First of all, I don’t play anything. I do well just playing Youtube videos much less an instrument. i did take mandolin lessons about 12-14 years ago and could play the important chords in bluegrass and some very basic picking on bluegrass stand by’s. Been thinking of getting another mandolin and starting it up again. All this boredom has me wanting to do something. Getting old though.

Anyway, what I am really curious about is wondering how the musicians in the accompanying band know exactly when to come back in and play with the soloist.

I started thinking about this while watching Buddy Rich playing drums on the many Tonight Show with Johnny Carson he appeared on.
The song would start off with the band and he playing the song...always jazz. Then the band would stop and he’d take off on these huge, wandering, incredible solos that often lasted near 5 minutes and then without missing a beat, the band would come back in perfectly and they’d finish the song.

There were no players flipping pages following along. How do they know when it’s time to for them to all come back in and where they come in at? Is Buddy giving them a signal or some type of heads up that they know signals them to come in?

If it were any other kind of music I could understand how the others would know. Seeing as jazz is highly improvisational and the players wander all over the place depending on how they want to play a song, it’s seems very hard to know when the right time is for the band. By the way, this is him playing with the Tonight Show band, not his own band that’s used to him and know how he’s gonna play.

Please explain it so I can quit wondering about it.

thank you
Larry
First of all there's rehearsal time, when the tune and all the cues would have been discussed and practiced. The cue to pick up after a drum solo like Buddy played would have been something as simple and barely noticeable as a head nod, or more something more overt like a vocalized count off like "1! 2! 1-2-3-4!"

Take a look at this video
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cwwm4yvYCoc


At the 3:07 mark, you see Doc Severinsen in the background watching Buddy intently. He's waiting for that cue. At 3:22 you see Buddy turn his head slightly to the left toward Doc and mouth something ("OK!" maybe?) That's all Doc needs to get the band going again.
 

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Ba-nan-nah-nuh
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Can't believe this pix was taken almost 11 years ago - but I'm working out a bassline to (look in the mirror to see) the computer screen in front of me.

Yeah - the bass isn't plugged in yet ....

It's not always easy to anticipate a break in a song if it's a playlist that the group has sent you to work up a day --- or even a few hours --- before the gig.

Gig-players and "call" players are always having to rush-learn a song and many times I've not heard the number before.

Then there's always their interpretation of the music - it's got a different meter or key (not very hard, that part) or inflections. The inflections are the worst!

Oh, sure, if you KNOW the song - but I like to play Radio Roulette and learn to listen to the changes that break a song into the areas that each player has to also hit on the mark.

So ---> yes - there are audible clues and winks and head nods, but mostly it's knowing the song at hand.

Here's me and "The Walk'em Boys" a couple of years ago - that's me on the far left of the bandstand ... sorry for the short video - but I didn't take it.....

I had 24 hours to learn 6-10 song playlists and most of the music was unknown by me - but I know I can 'box-out' a bassline as long as I know the key and at least some of the progressions. Still - it's simpler to just hug the root and keep a low profile, musically, that is.

View: https://youtu.be/On1rw8AhKX0


PS - I built that bass......
 

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I'm the Southwest's best "Okayest Guitar player." Really.
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Played bass off and on for 40+ years. The answer to the question is, "it depends." The more you play, the better you'll get.
 

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I don't even know....what I'm doing here....
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I think plp is a pretty active brass guy. Trumpet, if I remember correctly.
 

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Playin mandolin for 30 years.

Arthritis kicking my ass now.

Still hoot with cowboy chords on guitar.
 

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"Been playing guitar for many years now. I recommend it highly". Yes sir. Been massaging the fret board since I was 7. Watch the chart, count the bars for each instrument/song. i.e. 15 bars for the drum solo or lead guitar. Roll from there.
 

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Music generally has structure like a house. It's not that hard to find the exit or take cues when you should jump out the window. I've sat in cold on many shows. Grab the bass player and have him cozy up next you... then signal/conduct when oddness approaches. Not to mention sheet music and "fake books" for standards and various shorthand styles (Nashville numbers comes to mind) for charting a song before you play it. Also, comp off someone for awhile and you get used to their phrasing.
 

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Musicians? How about the singing ones?
Tenor - 45 years
10 or so different choirs and vocal groups including a couple of really good quartet's.
Still singing at age 61!
I cannot read a note of music.
I have been blessed/cursed with a perfect pitch memory. I memorize my parts. I can hear every note in a musical chord and repeat it.(in my range). It's like a musical photographic memory. The folks I sing with, and the directors, cannot fathom it.

I use a program called "sharp eye". I lay the music I've been given to practice on the scanner. The program reads it and generates a MIDI file in musical parts. I listen. (*What's really awesome is if I can find the song being sung buy another choir) After 2 or 3 run-througs, I've got it and can sing it. God-given super power? Could be. However, it really pisses off the choir members who sing off key.
:drunk:
 
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