Eines der wirklich verblüffenden Fundstücke. Wer kommt auf sowas?
Fundort: irgendeine Theaterzeitschrift des 18. Jahrhunderts
Wippsterz ist eine ältliche, vom Duden als „landschaftlich“ klassifizierte Form von Bachstelze. Im Kontext des Fundorts (habe vergessen wo genau) war es aber deutlich als Bezeichnung für einen dandyhaften Nervösling gemeint, diese Bedeutung findet sich lexikalisiert nur noch im Deutschen Wörterbuch von den Grimms:
übertragen verwendet für einen unruhigen, in steter bewegung befindlichen menschen, belege s. in den zu 2 angeführten wörterbüchern.
Gebildet wird das Wort aus „wippen“ und „Sterz“ (für Schwanz). Einige grossartige Varianten finden sich auch in Brehms Tierleben:
Haus-, Stein- oder Wasserstelze, Wege-, Wasser-, Quäk- und Wippsterz, Bebe-, Wedel- und Wippschwanz, Klosterfräulein oder Nonne, Ackermännchen etc.Brehms Illustrirtes Thierleben (1866) im DWDS
Vorschlag: Wieder geläufig einführen für nervöse Zeitgenoss*innen. „Was für ein Wippsterz“, „Sei doch nicht so ein Wippsterz“ etc. Bitte in der nächsten Chat-Nachricht verwenden.
Epperson, Bruce D.: More Important Than the Music. A History of Jazz Discography. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press 2013.
Where do you look up information about jazz, blues, gospel and all that ja…ngling music, I mean besides just googling yourself to death in a pool of abundant, half-reliable information? Where do you go where the information, however correct it might be, doesn’t feel sticky? In discographies? Which ones? Epperson’s book on the topic, More Important Than the Music (2013), is fascinating. Sure, from one perspective, it gives you an abundance of facts, of nerdy information about nerds and their nerdy obsessions, it painstakingly records who published which list of jazz records at what time under what circumstances. That is the purely fact-driven aspect. On the other hand, it introduces you to a world of people whipped by their desires, bound together in love and hatred for the topic and for each other, stuck in decade-long feuds about plagiarism, money, mutual criticism and appraisal, a world full of projects only making it from the letters A to K because of over-ambition, corporate enemies or new technology. A world full of hope and despair, of half-arbitrary decisions about race, genre, cut-off dates, band formats and sound formats, driven by personal interest of the respective researcher. A world of necessary, but neither academically nor financially rewarded research, with no sustainable way to make it profitable. I don’t know if Epperson realises just how hilarious his chosen quote to end the book is, where Howard Rye says:
The single biggest factor in jazz discography is that neither Brian Rust nor Jørgen Jepsen gave a damn about the needs of those who wouldn’t buy their books!(Rye in Epperson 2013, 212).
Talk about an exclamation point to end a book about, well, lists. This is not how a tragedy ends (or a comedy, or a romance) – this is how you end a farce, a book with farcical subject matter, intentionally or not. As I said somewhere else: A discography is but a list made by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. (Including myself, of course, although the only ‚discographies‘ I create consist of second-hand information and aim at cutting the corners of availability).
Below is a list of the jazz discographies that Epperson discusses more than just in passing and around which he constructs entire chapters or paragraphs. Epperson’s book is an eloquent, informative and fluid (and at times hilarious) read from a historical/narrative perspective, but it doesn’t have registers telling you which discographies or names are discussed on what pages, and which chapters and paragraphs deal with which time spans exactly etc. (actually, in the text, the chapter titles do indicate time spans, but they don’t do this where it would be most useful: in the „contents“ overview). So I assembled a list according to Epperson’s chronology with some of the crucial quotes for each discography. The list only treats general jazz (and blues) discographies, meaning there are no specialized discographies: no label discographies, no single-artist bio-discographies, no solographies (yes, those exist), no national discographies and so forth.
Since discographies tend to have shifting titles, different editors/authors, changing time spans and volatile edition histories, I somewhat lump the titles and publication years for the discographies together. The gist of each work’s identity will be researchable with this, if you want to dig into it. Or just read the book.
Schleman, Hilton: Rhythm on Record (1936)
The lack of session-level information has led many discographers to relegate Rhythm on Record to protodiscography, leaving the honors of „first discography“ to Delaunay’s Hot Discography, which appeared three months later.However, within the limited goals he set for himself, Schleman was largely successful, an discographers were still using his book some sixty-five years later.(Epperson 2013, 29)
Delaunay, Charles: Hot Discography (1936)
„Charles Delaunay is the undoubted father of discography as we know it today,“ adds Sheatsley. „It was he who first saw and utilized the importance of master numbers.“(Epperson 2013, 38)
Blackstone, Orin: Index to Jazz (1945–1950)
Therefore he stuck to an alphabetical-by-artist structure from start to finish, unlike Delaunay’s affinities of style arrangement.(Epperson 2013, 51)
Delaunay, Charles: New Hot Discography (1948)
Recognizably a Delaunay product, it retained the affinities of style approach for musicians recorded before 1930 but abandoned it for later artists, who were grouped in straight alphabetical order in a long section of their own.(Epperson 2013, 56)
One other prescient feature of New Hot Discography bears mentioning in some detail. Each issue (usually, but not always, a 78 rpm, two-sided single) was assigned a „discode“, a Delaunay-assigned serial number comprising a number, letter, and number.(Epperson 2013, 59)
Carey, David, Albert McCarthy (and Ralph Venable): The Directory of Recorded Jazz and Swing Music [The Jazz Directory] (1949–1955)
McCarthy, Albert and Dave Carey: The Directory of Recorded Jazz and Swing Music Inlcuding Gospel and Blues Records [The Jazz Directory]. (1955–1957)
The discographic format wasn’t radically different from that of the contemporaneous Blackstone or Delaunay works, but it was crisper and clearer, mostly because, once and for all, it subordinated matrix numbers to recording sessions arranged in a chronological format.(Epperson 2013, 69)
Delaunay, Charles and Kurt Mohr: Hot discographie encyclopédique (1951–1952)
The format of Hot discographie encyclopédique (HDE) was a complete break with any of Delaunay’s previous works and bore a strong resemblance to Carey and McCarthy’s series, so it instantly became known as the „French Jazz Directory„. Delaunay admitted that the times had changed and „such a work as this must be objective, not selective.“(Epperson 2013, 76)
Rust, Brian: Jazz Records, A–Z (1961)
Although this session-based layout was not radically different from that in The Jazz Directory, the refinements he did develop ended up making Jazz Records, A–Z so superior to anything that came before that it was eventually called the Rust format.(Epperson 2013, 85)
Where did you go for availability, not history? […] Even Malcolm Shaw, who edited the latest (2002) edition of Rust’s Jazz Records, A–Z, admits that „JR [Jazz Records] as it stands is probably due for a total reconsideration of the concept“.(Epperson 2013, 4)
Jepsen, Jørgen Grunnet: Jazz Records, 1942–196X (1963–1970)
Survival demanded a relatively straightforward editorial policy. „This is not a complete listing of all jazz records,“ cautioned Jepsen. „This is only an attempt to list all the records known to the editor and his collaborators.“(Epperson 2013, 89)
Godrich, John and Robert Dixon: Blues and Gospel Records, 1902–1942 (1964, 1969)
Dixon, Robert and John Godrich: Blues and Gospel Records, 1902–1943 (1982)
– and Howard Rye: Blues and Gospel Records, 1890–1943 (1997)
The decision to include all existing material without differentiating whether it was commercial or archival (and whether or not it was relevant to record collectors) proved to be the single most important metric by which Blues and Gospel Records came to be evaluated over the years.(Epperson 2013, 94)
Leadbitter, Mike and Neil Slaven: Blues Records, 1943–1966: An Encyclopedic Discography to More Than Two Decades of Recorded Blues (1968)
–: Blues Records, 1943–1970: A Selective Discography. Vol. 1, A–K. (1987)
–: Blues Records, 1943–1970: A Selective Discography. Vol. 2, L–Z. (1994).
The few who did review the 1987 revision generally considered it a significant improvement over its 1968 predecessor. Everyone agreed that its new subtitle A Selective Discography, was a far more realistic description that the first edition’s unfortunate Encyclopedic Discography label.(Epperson 2013, 101)
Bruyninckx, Walter: 50 Years of Recorded Jazz. 1917–1967. (ca. 1968–1971)
–: 60 Years of Recorded Jazz. 1917–1977 (ca. 1977–1980)
–: 70/75 Years of Recorded Jazz. (late 1980s to early 1990s)
– and Domi Truffandier: 85 Years of Recorded Jazz. (CD-ROM 2003)
„Despite his continued plagiarism,“ recalled librarian Matthew Snyder, „by the late 1980’s [sic] the general opinion on Bruyninckx appeared to be that the improved quality of his work, combined with his extensive coverage, had produced the best available jazz discography.“(Epperson 2013, 113)
Raben, Erik: Jazz Records, 1942–80: A Discography. (1989–2007, A–G. Unfinished)
Everyone agreed that its musicians index, included at the end of each volume and not as an appendix at the end of the series, was much needed and badly overdue […].(Epperson 2013, 117)
Lord, Tom: The Jazz Discography. (1992–2002)
„It is possible that Lord’s project has already taken over the market for Raben’s volumes, and that Raben’s project will die. This possibility, in combination with the frustrations of using Bruyninckx’s paperbacks and his inept marketing of 70 Years, may mean that that, in jazz discography’s own little version of a hostile corporate takeover, Lord’s project has already emerged the victor.“ [Kernfeld/Rye](Epperson 2013, 125)
Lord was a businessman, a marketer who was peddling a product – the others were either professional academics or amateur scholars undertaking research. […] „Lord is more of a collator than a researcher,“ observed Edward Berger […].(Epperson 2013, 126)
(note that this Tom Lord has no relation to the Tom Lord who made 1976’s Clarence Williams-discography)
The notable Websites and Online Articlesthat Epperson lists in his bibliography are:
Ein weiterer Moment voller Plunder aus der Kulturgeschichte. Heutiges Fundstück: Bettine von Arnim denkt an einem Brief an Karoline von Günderrode [sic] über die Beat-Generation und James Dean nach:
Da ist’s deutlich, daß der Geist auch nur Frühlingsatem schöpft und daß Jugend nicht in Zeit sich einschränkt, die vergeht, da Lebenslust nicht vergehn kann, weil, wie Natur Frühling aufatmet, wir Lebensbegeisterung aufatmen.– Es ist dumm, was ich hier sag, ist nicht uneingehüllter Geist, der den Wahn vernichtet, aber unter der armseligen Hülle des zwanzigmal wiederholten Vergleichs liegt einer zerschmetternden Antwort Keim auf das, was Du mir schon mehr als einmal gesagt hast: „Recht viel wissen, recht viel lernen, und nur die Jugend nicht überleben. – Recht früh sterben!“
(Bettine v. Arnim: Die Günderode. Leipzig: Insel 1983 . S. 413.
Abb. Deutsches Textarchiv
Rated as: Album
Album Status: Genre Recommendation
Specific Genre: Indie Rock, Noise Pop
Main Genre: Alternative Rock, Rock
Undertones: Slacker Rock
Label: L’Age d’or
1 Ich muss reden, auch wenn ich schweigen muss 2 Du bist ganz schön bedient 3 Gott sei Dank haben wir uns beide gehabt 4 Ich hab 23 Jahre mit mir verbracht 5 Ich werde nie mehr alleine sein 6 Michael Ende, du hast mein Leben zerstört 7 Ich mag dich einfach nicht mehr so 8 Ich bin neu in der Hamburger Schule 9 Es ist einfach Rockmusik 10 Hauptsache ist
Der da drüben ist jetzt DJ in Berlin
This is a very short, but all the more concise follow-up in the direct vein of their debut Digital ist besser (which was published not even five months earlier the same year): their simple, brash, riff-driven indie rock (with some noise elements) and panache for post-adolescent yearning is still fresh although they’re less eager to impress with pure force and noise experimentation. The lyrics are as clever, but take a notable shift towards a generation in their mid-twenties slowly realising they’re not automatically the youngest people anymore when entering a room.
The thematic choice and the sonic restriction pay off: with a Marcel Proust-referencing title and a runtime of not even thirty minutes, this could have come across as a weirdly uncomfortable, extremely rushed sophomore effort, seemingly just throwing leftover ideas from the debut at the wall. But it’s not! With its rigid structure, the choice of avoiding lengthy guitar thrashing and the lyrical quality, they manage to turn their simple formula into another melancholic but emphatic indie rock burst that expertly thwarts collapsing beneath built-up expectations and self-imposed ambitions.
Rated as: Album
Album Status: Genre Contender
Specific Genre: Avant-Garde Jazz
Main Genre: Jazz
Undertones: Chamber Jazz
Label: Unit Records
1 Lanjusto 2 The Arrival of Lee Pershn Sirgal 3 A Tale from the Forest 4 Vom fernen Kern der Sache 5 Knock Code 3 6 Seldom Was Covered with Snow and Old Oak 7 The Angry Man 8 Sad Lily
There is too much water in the sea
While the debut Hildegard lernt fliegen (2007) of Andreas Schaerer’s brainchild already impressed with originality and freshness through jester-like flirtation with the ridiculous in a chamberesque avant-jazz context, its follow-up is the six piece avant-combo’s fully realised form. The composition are as unpredictable yet easy to follow, there’s a larger amplitude of moods – compare the histrionic showtune extravaganza of „The Arrival Of Lee Pershn Sirgal“ with the almost Ellingtonian melancholy of the double-bass-reliant piece „Sad Lily“ – and, yet again, outrageous vocalist Schaerer is in full flight: his voice cajoles, careens, scats, doubles as a trombone and does all the silly tricks you would expect from a vocal acrobat. The difference is, though, that it doesn’t come off as a pure joke, his voice is implemented as an additional instrument.
The compositions, though having an earnest bend towards Mingus and avant-prog, owe a larger part to Zappa’s big band experiments (don’t pay too close attention to the lyrics though, they are pretty clearly just syllables meant to match up a former scat in dadaist/Eno-manner). While Schaerer is the brain and heart of the project, one should listen very, very carefully to the band – whipped into shape with the precision of a workaholic, they still all find little niches, cracks and alcoves to make the whole affair conversational instead of stubborn, open-ended instead of constructed (when a featured typewriter provides the beat, you hardly notice for how naturally it fits in). Probably the band’s masterpiece, as Hildegard goes flying like a weird, boney, flapping and yapping wayward mechanism through some Dali-painting’s sky. Be sure to pick this one up if you’re interested in the theatrical side of contemporary avant-jazz, where Zappa’s shadow stops looming and things turn bright again.
Rated as: Album / Archival
Album Status: for Fans
Specific Genre: Cape Jazz, Piano Jazz
Main Genre: Jazz
Undertones: Third Stream
Label: Black Lion
1 Little Niles 2 Resolution 3 Which Way? 4 On the Banks of Allen Waters 5 Knight’s Night 6 Pye R Squared [Medley 7–9:] 7 Mood Indigo 8 Don’t Get Around Much Anymore 9 Take the „A“ Train
A good but in no way essential addition to Brand’s early work
Originally recorded in 1965 (but not released until 1973), this is early Brand. It doesn’t sound unfamiliar, but Brand displays neither his sprawling african piano swirl, nor does he go into his Ellington-musings too often (though he does, of course: the last three tracks here are an Ellington-medley).
No, in this London solo-session (Pye Studios), he explores pieces which are slow and abstract, with some of his signature clusters and fast little dissonant attacks thrown in, but he never sets into the relentless groove familiar from his works from the later 1960s. His tone is harsh and direct here, the abstract pieces sound pleasingly pensive and alienated, and the Ellington-pieces sound, well, also pleasingly pensive. Abstract Brand plays some abstract Ellington, both survive. The songs are not very constructed but do follow Brand’s idiosyncratic logic of structure which is always borderline improv.
Of most interest is the display of an additional side of Brand in 1965 – his published works, like the trio-session Duke Ellington Presents the Dollar Brand Trio, retained more of a swing feel, while the live set Anatomy of a South African Village was already introducing his mobile, sprawling „cape jazz“. This, on the other hand, is Brand displaying his stark, slightly avant-garde leanings. Without the soft touch, though. If there ever was a great pianist who didn’t care about the „soft touch“, that is Dollar Brand.
This is a good but in no way essential addition to Brand’s early work, as everything that is „signature Brand“ is only faintly audible here, as if he was deliberately holding back. Brand wasn’t a refined player at that time, so the slow but brittle sound might not be everyone’s cup of tea. I’m not surprised this didn’t get released until when he was already internationally famous, because it has this demo-feel all over it, as if Brand was just trying out some new motives on some afternoon in the studio. Yet it lets you see Brand’s less approachable, voice-searching leanings at the time, which makes for a great complementary addition.
Edition trivia: The several mid-1960s sessions Brand played (mostly in Europe) have a messy publication history. The tracks from this 1965-session have surfaced 1973 on several LPs and CDs eversince, usually called This Is Dollar Brand or Reflections. They are the same and the track listing is usually congruent, but the LPs and CDs called Reflections usually feature four additional tracks. Several online sources claim that these sessions were issued under either title in 1965, but that is not true. While this track list here contains the session’s bulk of interest, the entire session is available on Reflections (Black Lion BLCD760127).
Rated as: Album
Album Status: Classic
Specific Genre: Jazz Fusion, Jazz-Rock
Main Genres: Jazz, Rock
Undertones: Avant-Garde Jazz, Blues Rock
1 Right Off 2 Yesternow
The outrageous one
Miles Davis’ fusion albums of the late 1960s and early 1970s form something like the cast boy group of progressive jazz: the chilled-out mysterious one (In a Silent Way), the brainy weird one (Bitches Brew), the wild one (Live-Evil), the aggressively sexy one (On the Corner), and now: the one that everybody wants to hang out with – the outrageous one, the fun guy! In a less moronic way to talk about it, it really seems like Davis had a sort of vision for this period and what to do with the fusion style: though similiar, each of these albums represents one perfect stylistic distillation of what fusion could do.
Jack Johnson, then, is obviously and audibly spliced together from several different jam sessions (this is most notable when a short part of In a Silent Way shows up on side B) – but let’s talk about what it sounds like if you have no edition history to consult.
On the side-long first track (which is what this album is all about) a small raunchy combo kicks it right off with a simple blues rock rhythm, a distorted electric guitar attack, a bass finding its bluesy groove and staying with it – did I mix up records in the sleeve again? No, after John McLaughlin’s hilariously primitive riffs cease for some moments, Davis’ piercing trumpet takes over about two minutes in and it’s simply a ride of a totally loose groovy funky unstoppable jazz rock jam from here on, as the trumpet and the guitar exchange improvised solos and duels without giving it a thought. The soloing in the following ten minutes is just brain-melting, Davis screeches, rocks, and lumbers his way through the blues rock like you’ve never heard him. This part ends about twelve minutes in with some short ambient fusion intermezzo but thankfully immediately returns to the same relentless groove, with Steve Grossman’s saxophone and a new trumpet sound, the band continues to groove even swampier and Herbie Hancock is thrown into the mix. Judging from his performance he must have thought something like: „Okay guys, if you’re not taking this seriously, I’m not“ and plays a totally disastrous solo on some heavily distorted, disastrously sounding organ and the result somehow is instant history. With this completed line-up, they tip the rhythm into even dirtier territories, McLaughlin wraps it all up with a razor-toothed shredding guitar fest à la Hendrix and well that’s that.
Side B is more akin to the calmer, more textured and nuanced fusion sound of Silent Way and Brew, and it’s also a very good track, with calm keyboard layers for Davis to float away on, the typical start-stop bass patterns and heavy editing. It’s a generally more pensive, deliberate affair that gets screechier and decidedly cross-grained in the second ten minutes when keyboard, electric guitar and trumpet are constantly fighting for attention. Good stuff.
Either way, with all the splicing done here, the reduced fusion line-up and the improvised feel to it, this is not a „perfectly executed“ album – but who cares, among Davis’ fusion and jazz-rock albums, this stands as an absolutely unique, unrepeatable jam session that might well become your favourite „rock“ record for a while. Indispensable.