Tag Archives: esbjorn svensson trio

Old Wine in New Bottles

Esbjorn Svensson Trio: Leukocyte (2008)

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Medeski Martin & Wood: Radiolarians (I–III) (2008/2009)

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by Marshall Bowden

Reinvention is the name of the game in music, at least in popular forms of music since the 1960s. Beginning with the innovations of The Beatles it became largely undesirable, if not impossible, for a pop or rock band to merely stake out a territory and continue to occupy it in perpetuity. There are exceptions—the Doors, metal bands like Black Sabbath and AC/DC, The Ramones—but overall failure to innovate generally leads to critical, and eventually popular, demise. That has been less true of jazz musicians until quite recently. True, major innovators like Charlie Parker and John Coltrane made it very difficult for new jazz musicians not to take their work as a starting point, but overall the idea of jazz musician as journeyman has provided for many lengthy careers playing in much the same style.

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