Morehead State University

Poster Title

The Language of Kenny Burrell: A Transcription Comparison and Analysis

Institution

Morehead State University

Abstract

Kenny Burrell is one of the living legends of jazz guitar. His prolific and influential career has spanned over five decades. He has produced hundreds of recordings as a solo artist and as a sideman for such notable jazz musicians as Dizzy Gillespie, Duke Ellington, John Coltrane, Charlie Parker, and Miles Davis, to name a few. Burrell's cool, laid back approach to the guitar, combined with his lush and deep tone, has personified his career, making him "America's guitar laureate" according to the Detroit Free Press. He has been a powerful inspiration for generations of young guitarists, and will likely be for many more. In order to fully grasp, understand, and codify Burrell's distinctive style, it is necessary to examine his playing through harmonic, melodic, rhythmic, and motivic considerations. To this end, Burrell's improvised solos have been analyzed and compared on the following three recordings: "Chitlins Con Carne", "The Breeze And I", and "I Never Knew". Through a brief biographic study and the analysis/comparison of three transcribed solos, Burrell's musical language is decoded and translated in order to offer a better understanding of his contribution to jazz guitar history.

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 

The Language of Kenny Burrell: A Transcription Comparison and Analysis

Kenny Burrell is one of the living legends of jazz guitar. His prolific and influential career has spanned over five decades. He has produced hundreds of recordings as a solo artist and as a sideman for such notable jazz musicians as Dizzy Gillespie, Duke Ellington, John Coltrane, Charlie Parker, and Miles Davis, to name a few. Burrell's cool, laid back approach to the guitar, combined with his lush and deep tone, has personified his career, making him "America's guitar laureate" according to the Detroit Free Press. He has been a powerful inspiration for generations of young guitarists, and will likely be for many more. In order to fully grasp, understand, and codify Burrell's distinctive style, it is necessary to examine his playing through harmonic, melodic, rhythmic, and motivic considerations. To this end, Burrell's improvised solos have been analyzed and compared on the following three recordings: "Chitlins Con Carne", "The Breeze And I", and "I Never Knew". Through a brief biographic study and the analysis/comparison of three transcribed solos, Burrell's musical language is decoded and translated in order to offer a better understanding of his contribution to jazz guitar history.