Melody as rhythm...

Hi, 

I've just been reading "The Jazz Ear: conversations over music" by Ben Ratliff. 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Jazz-Ear-Conversations-Music/dp/080509086X 

I really got hold of it for the interview with Bob Brookmeyer - a big band composer, and therefore directly relevant to my PhD research - but happened to look at some of the other interviews. One sentence in the chapter on Andrew Hill has really got me thinking. Apparently Hill briefly worked with Charlie Parker, and during a conversation Parker remarked, "I look at melody as rhythm"... 

This lead Hill to reappraise the conventional Eurocentric musical approach where "...melody is paramount, harmony accompanies it, and rhythm is the last part to worry about." (p. 50) Hill then states, "It opened my mind to many possibilities... If everything is rhythm, then you just have these rhythms on top of each other. But they're not polyrhythms or pyramids of rhythm; they're crossing rhythms."(p.50) 

I'm now listening to Hill's last CD "Time Lines" (2005)  on Spotify 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Time-Lines-Andrew-Hill/dp/B000E3LJ94/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1457336609&sr=8-1&keywords=time+lines+andrew+hill 

I don't really understand the "crossing rhythms" quote above, so I'm trying to see if I can hear what he's doing... Not so far... But I've only just started... 

But just the idea of "melody as rhythm" generates lots of compositional possibilities to explore. Watch this space... 

Cheers 

Ralf

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