Essay on Randy Weston Jazz Concert

3 pages
572 words
University of Richmond
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I attended a jazz concert last week as part of a requirement of students taking a music 33 course. The show was a solo concert by Randy Weston. Randy Weston is a very active and living legend at 89 years old. The artist is a black American background and a giant of a man almost 8 feet tall. I realized that everything about Randy is giant. His voice is deep and booming, and at the same time, his is laughter unique. I believe that since Monk and Ellington, Randy has the most significant sound as well as the most vibrant inventive beat.

Randy introduced the concert with joking that he felt that he had only ten more minutes to the show after introductory clapping by the audience. He then went forward to explain how illness and Mother Nature are connected. If one gets ill, then it meant that one was not right to Mother Nature. According to Randy, music can be used to bring back a sick individual. He then went ahead to state that people possessed by a particular type of music dress in a color that represents the music. He states that in the ancient African civilization communities music concerts could begin at 4 p.m. and last till 6 am in the morning. According to Randy, music takes over the body of an individual and controls them. He then went ahead to play a piece from Africa. The song itself had a very cheerful tone. The tune made me feel as if was I was part of the traditional African community playing the song to bring back an individual from illness. The song had some sadness in it, repeating a call-and-response and a countermelody between them.

Randy introduced second and third songs by describing his visit to West Africa Nigeria. He acknowledges that he was experienced traditional Nigerian music and dance. He also narrated how he was privileged to meet conventional African artists from Nigeria and Ghana. The two songs he played were played live in different concerts that he attended during his visit to West Africa. The two songs had the form 32 bars with the type of AABA and some chord progression. The first song started with very repetitive with the artist playing similar sounds. The third song too had been performed using a piano with similar repetitive sounds creating a unique harmony. The two songs had a melancholic mood thus allowing the audience to experience a relaxed atmosphere as they sat down and listened.

Weston then went ahead to talk about African music after spending time with traditional musicians in Africa. He stated that these musicians had a different concept of music. The musicians create music through various ways, i.e., listening to the rhythm and sounds of insects, the sounds of thunder, wind, etc. the African traditional music also describes where the musicians lie. Music to the traditional African community is living.

The fourth, fifth and sixth songs that Randy played were also compositions from Africa. The songs had a faster tempo than the previous songs played. The nimble rhythm created an overall pleasure to listen giving the audience energy.

In conclusion, the music played by Randy in the concert reached a magical dimension which I would refer to as spiritual. The strength and gentleness of composing of his songs and the hitting of the piano keys and notes create a natural atmosphere whereby the audience feels part of the occasion.

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