10 Seconds: Gwilym Jones
1. Baby Dodds - Drum Improvisation #2 (0'00" - 0'10")
From Baby Dodds - Jazz A' La Creole
"Baby Dodds is the reason why we’re all here. Best press roll in the game. Such a strong opening statement to what is a beautifully structured improvised drum solo. Masterful."
2. The Old Regular Baptists - I Am A Poor Pilgrim Of Sorrow (2'19" - 2'29")
From Various Artists – Classic Mountain Songs (From Smithsonian Folkways)
"I don’t really have an explanation for why I chose this one. It just sounds incredible and when I first heard it I was totally bowled over. Just power of an entire choir singing in imperfect unison like that. It’s kind of trippy and I’m not sure if any of its improvised or if it’s all predetermined, either way it sounds awesome.
Totally reminds me of Coltrane’s Ascension. The 10 seconds of this that I’ve picked has enough intact of both the call and response that I think it should give you a pretty good picture of why I like it so much."
3. Doffs Poi - Bang Bang Bang (1'42" - 1'52")
From Doffs Poi - Dictionary Songs (2017)
“Every song this band have put out makes me smile.
Basically it’s 3 folks who studied jazz at the conservatoire in Trondheim and decided to make a synth punk/indie band. They all absolutely shred and the singer is incredible. She probably has the most diverse tonal range and some of the best harmony/pitching chops I’ve heard from maybe anyone.
I saw them live when I was at the jazz festival in Trondheim in 2016 and it honestly might have been the best gig I’ve ever seen.
The drummer’s ridiculous too."
4. Sonny Stitt - Lover (18'59" - 19'09")
From Sonny Stitt - Jazz at the Hi-Hat (1954)
"Sonny Stitt’s just incredible. That solo break at 18:56 is totally ridiculous. This is probably my favourite recording of him, just total ease and fluency playing a pretty unrelenting stream of 8th notes at nuts tempos. The rhythm section are hanging on for dear life!"
5. Lee Morgan - Ca-Lee-So (0'33" - 0'43")
From Lee Morgan - Delightfulee (1967)
"As I’m writing this it’s a beautiful sunny day and there’s nothing that puts me in the mood to go walk around with my sunnies on and have a few cans in the park like this tune.
I picked this clip because the grooves that Billy Higgins plays on the A and bridge of the head might be some of the most perfect drumming that exists on record. Although the entire track is kind of perfect and I hope this 10 seconds makes you go check out the whole record. Billy’s an absolute master at changing things up to lift the music up in the right spot and this groove change is one of the best examples of it that I can think of."
6. Joe Henderson - A Shade Of Jade (0'00" - 0'10")
From Joe Henderson – In Pursuit Of Blackness (1971)
"I love this tune and it’s played beautifully on this 1971 recording. I love the original recording on Mode For Joe too but I feel like the composition really benefits from the faster tempo, and I love the band crescendo into those pushes at the end of the first statement. Lenny White and Stanley Clarke play their asses off on this record."
7. Pixies - Break My Body (0'38" - 0'48")
From Pixies - Surfer Rosa (1988)
"Probably my favourite chorus from a grunge song. It’s such a weird choice to leave more space in the guitar part and go into the upper register compared to the dense chugging power chords of the verses,
but it totally kills. Also I’ve always loved Frank Black’s voice when he does that high kind of screechy thing."
8. Wayne Shorter Quartet - Starry Night (7'13" - 7'23")
From Wayne Shorter Quartet - Without a Net (2013)
"This clip is probably responsible for me even being a drummer in the first place, and why Brian Blade, and also this specific Wayne Shorter band have such a special place in my heart.
Brian’s energy and musicality really shine through here. The phrasing with the melody, the perfect length of the space he leaves, the mix of timbres within the band, and Brian really pushing everyone’s energy through the roof.
No matter what music I’m playing I always want to find a way to make everyone else in the band feel like whatever they play, I’m behind them all the way, and that’d they’d do the same for me.
I think this clip really embodies that spirit."
9. Jonas Burgwinkel - House Weekend (0'05" - 0'15")
From Jonas Burgwinkel - Side B (2015)
" This is without a doubt one of my favourite records of the last 10 years. I basically listened to this non-stop while I was at college in Birmingham.
Jonas’ feel on the drums is like time travel and it’s some of the spiciest stuff I’ve ever heard. It helps that the rest of the band are unbelievable too. Pablo Held straight up destroys the keys
throughout this track. Robert Landfermann getting nasty on double bass too!"
10. Olly Chalk - Golden (1'49" - 1'59")
From Olly Chalk (2020)
"This is some of the most beautiful solo piano music I’ve heard in ages. Olly recorded this in his flat during lockdown and this part in particular is lovely. I’m always a sucker for nice changes happening
underneath with a constant melody note on top. His tone and touch on this whole piece are just beautiful too.
I was at Birmingham at the same time as Olly and a few other folks (Christos Stylianides, Olivia Murphy, Dan Kemshell, Sam Ingvorsen) and they’ve all since moved to London and consistently create the most beautiful and technically challenging music. Go see them at a venue near you and buy their records!"