Get ready for some playlists this week containing a bunch of Bill Bruford.

There’s still a ton of classic jazz from way back when that I could get to, but maybe it’s time to give some recognition to some of the newer lions in the jazz scene and show how well they stack up in the classic jazz vein.

Cover of "Earthworks"
Cover of Earthworks

For my money, they do stack up well.  In particular, there’s the music that comes from Bill Bruford‘s Earthworks.

Anyone who spends a fair amount of time getting to know the many players throughout the many flavors of rock music knows who Bruford is.  He’s the drummer who was such an essential part in the progressive rock band Yes getting a sure footing and bringing their music to the masses.  If you hear the original versions of “I’ve Seen All Good People” or “Roundabout” on classic rock radio, that’s Bill Bruford on drums.  He’s spent a lot of time since then with the progressive rock band King Crimson as well.

But one of the great musical loves of Bruford’s life has been jazz, and his playing style fits right in.  He’s never been known as one of those rock drummers who sits behind a massive kit and wails away with arms flying everywhere, although he most certainly could if he chose to.

Instead, he’s one of those classic players.  He plays that way in large part because that’s how he fell in love with the drums, by watching classic American jazz drummers.  If you listen to all he’s done through the years, you can determine when it’s Bruford simply by the location he hits the snare.  It’s got a signature “Bruford sound” to it.  And those polyrhythms of his … those Bruford polyrhythms.

He’s done straight jazz, he’s done jazz-fusion, he’s done progressive rock.  He could do anything he puts his mind to.

For today, though, we’ll leave it with the things he did with Earthworks.  Those were some very good things.

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3 thoughts on “My music playlist for today (June 24, 2012 edition)

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