June 25, 2024

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Interview with Dave Arch & John Parricelli: Jazz is constantly evolving: Video

Jazz interview with a bad musicians, as if pianist Dave Arch & as if guitarist, ungrateful and not polite persons John Parricelli. An interview by email in writing. 

JazzBluesNews.com: – First, let’s start out with where you grew up, and what got you interested in music.

Dave Arch: I grew up near Henley on Thames (in the UK) and because my parents were musical, music of all types was always around. I started playing the Piano aged about 5

John Parricelli: – I grew up in rural Worcestershire in the middle of England. Although not musically trained, my mother loved singing and was really musical. There was always music (usually Neapolitan) in the house. I started listening to pop and rock music in my teens, became obsessed with the guitar and played in various bands in the area.

JBN: – How has your sound evolved over time? What have you been doing to find and develop your own sound?

DA: – I have always tried to sound authentic whatever music I am doing and that is a constantly evolving thing. Even with very simple notes on the Piano the touch and sound is hugely important to me.

JP: – I suppose my aim is to work towards getting to the essence of the music, and to communicate as honestly as possible as an improviser and composer. I’m interested in exploring new rhythmic ideas and harmonic sounds, and I try to keep my ears open. I love a very wide range of music.

JBN: – What routine practices or exercises have you developed to maintain and improve your current musical proficiency, in terms of both rhythm and harmony?

DA: – In terms of Rhythm I work with metronome and record myself to analyse and in terms of harmony I constantly explore lots of different music. I also arrange for different groups of instruments and enjoy the process of voicing and reharmonizing, which in turn comes back to the Piano.

JP: – I play a lot at home, and like Dave I use a metronome. I’m usually working on a new jazz standard, not because I play a lot of that music these days but because it’s the foundation of a lot music and I like the discipline and challenge. I try and focus on harmonies, rhythms, and tempos that I find difficult.  I play electric guitar, nylon guitar and steel strung acoustic guitar, and although there are similarities, there are differences in terms of tone production so I like to play/practice them all at home.

JBN: – How do you keep stray, or random, musical influences from diverting you from what you’re doing?

DA: – I don’t and think it a good thing to keep exploring.

JP: – I don’t really see any music as random or diverting. I may choose to not listen to certain things, but I’m often surprised by songs that I hear on the radio or emanating from my daughter’s room (for example some Billie Eilish or Taylor Swift songs).

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JBN: – In your opinion, what’s the balance in music between intellect and soul?

DA: – As I get older it has swung much more towards soul and how it feels.

JP: – For me intellect is at play (maybe literally) in preparation, experimentation and composition. When it comes to performance, ideally it fades into the background and ears and intuition (or soul) take over.

JBN: – There’s a two-way relationship between audience and artist; are you okay with delivering people the emotion they long for?

DA: – Very much so.

JP: – I’m interested in making music which communicates with people, so yes.

JBN: – How can we get young people interested in jazz when most of standard tunes are half a century old?

DA: – One could say the same about a lot of music. Standards are called that for a reason. They have endured and people want to play/ sing them. As ever it’s what you do with them. That’s where the interest lies and people are still expanding horizons within these tunes. The great classical composers date a lot further back and are still performed and enjoyed today.

JP: – Jazz is constantly evolving. I think a knowledge of the tradition is extremely important in creating the foundation for innovation and many of those standard tunes are a training ground for harmony. Having said that, experimentation has always been a vital part of the jazz tradition, and young musicians are doing that today just as they did in the 1940’s.

JBN: – John Coltrane once said that music was his spirit. How do you perceive the spirit and the meaning of life?

DA: – I have a picture up which says ‘Without music life would not be fair’ which says it all!

JP: – Music has been at the centre of things for me since I started playing along (not very well) to Eric Clapton records when I was a teenager. I’m just as enthusiastic about playing music now.

JBN: – If you could change one single thing in the musical world and that would become reality, what would that be?

DA: – I think people should take more risks instead of always taking the safe options. That’s how great music is made.

JP: – I think all children should have access to music education from a young age. Playing music delivers huge benefits which have a positive effect on many aspects of young people’s lives.

JBN: – Whom do you find yourself listening to these days?

DA: – I constantly listen to all styles of music so can’t single out anyone in particular.

JP: – Too many to mention.

JBN: – What is the message you choose to bring through your music?

DA: – Joy hopefully.

JP: – In addition to joy, peace and love (seriously!).

JBN: – Let’s take a trip with a time machine: where and why would you really want to go?

DA: – I guess to my teenage self but with the knowledge I have now.

JP: – I’d like to go to London in the sixties and listen to Wes Montgomery, Jimi Hendrix, Peter Green and Eric Clapton.

JBN: – So far, it’s been me asking you questions, now may I have a question from yourself…

DA: – You do a lot to promote Jazz and Blues. What brought you there?

JP: – What is your favourite album?

JBN: – Jazz is my life! There are too many of them … and you are so hard to understand, you are such an idiots.

The objectives of the interview are: How to introduce yourself, your activities, thoughts and intellect, and make new discoveries for our US/EU Jazz & Blues Association, which organizes festivals, concerts and meetings in Boston and various European countries, why not for you too!! You can read more about the association here. https://jazzbluesnews.com/2022/11/19/us-eu-jba/

Interview by Simon Sargsyan

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