Abyssinian jazz, jazzy thespians, Wynton HBO, conduction
Ron Scott | 9/5/2013, 1:12 p.m. | Updated on 9/5/2013, 1:12 p.m.
Exactly what is conduction? Morris created a vocabulary of signs and gestures activated to modify or construct a real-time musical arrangement or composition. Each sign and gesture transmits generative information for interpretation. Think of it as a conductor with an ensemble that provides instantaneous possibilities for altering or initiating harmony, melody, rhythm, articulation, phrasing or form.
“J. A. Deane was Butch’s right-hand man. He worked with Butch for many years and understands conduction, and also has his own voice and his own take on it. He will conduct the tribute to Butch, which will feature a cast of musicians that knew Butch well and are also familiar with the language,” stated Haynes.
Deane, who is a multi-instrumentalist, sound designer and conductor, has demonstrated a unique and innovative approach to the world of music. Morris was originally an avant-garde cornet player. In California in the early ’70s, he played with such notables as his brother, the bassist Wilber Morris, pianist/composer Horace Tapscott, trumpeter Bobby Bradford and tenor saxophonist Frank Lowe. While in New York City in the mid–1970s, he worked with baritone saxophonists Charles Tyler and Hamiet Bluiett and tenor saxophonist David Murray.
By the 1990s, Morris’ conductions began receiving attention beyond the jazz realm and were introduced to the worlds of theater, dance and film. He became a major force in new music, performing his conductions and lecturing all over the world. Morris passed away in January of last year.