Note:This scholarly essay is part of a research project submitted in partial fulfillment of the degree of Doctor of Musical Arts in the School of Music. The project also involved the preparation and performance of two lecture recitals related to the essay topic.

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Title:Conversational jazz styles: Bill Evans and the drummers who shaped the music
Author(s):Widenhofer, Marc Stephen
Advisor(s):Spencer, Joel
Contributor(s):Spencer, Joel; Gray, Lawrence; Solis, Gabriel; Stephens, John Chip
Department / Program:School of Music
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree:A.Mus.D. (doctoral)
Subject(s):conversational jazz
jazz drumming
Evans, Bill
Motian, Paul
Bunker, Larry
DeJohnette, Jack
Morell, Marty
LaBarbera, Joe
Abstract:Bill Evans was one of the most influential pianists of the 20th century. From his 1956 record, New Jazz Conceptions, until his untimely death in 1980, Bill Evans led a trio that would defy the confines and roles of traditional piano trios. A wealth of studies and analysis examine the interplay between Evans and his various bassists; however, little research focuses on the drummers. Through transcriptions and analysis, I will articulate the accompaniment of the drummers who helped define this genre of jazz. In addition, I will discuss the musical language that existed in the collective improvisation of the Bill Evans Trio by drummers Paul Motian, Larry Bunker, Philly Joe Jones, Jack DeJohnette, Marty Morell, Eliot Zigmund, and Joe LaBarbera. I will analyze each drummer’s timekeeping, group improvisation, and musical interactions in relation to the bassist and pianist.
Issue Date:2019
Publisher:School of Music, College of Fine and Applied Arts, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Rights Information:© 2019 Marc Stephen Widenhofer
Date Available in IDEALS:2019-04-16

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