Brubeck’s “Time Out:” Acadacemicizing Jazz

TimeOutby Dr. Spin

This month, the world lost two incredible and historically important musicians. Doubtlessly, I have nothing but love and respect for the music and life of Ravi Shankar, but Dave Brubeck was an important personal influence. By extension, Brubeck influenced virtually every student to whom I have had the pleasure of teaching jazz.
The Dave Brubeck Quartet’s unlikely hit Take 5 (written by saxophonist Paul Desmond) from their 1959 album Time Out is a rare beast in the jazz realm. Its infectious melody, which effortlessly flowed over a seemingly un-swingable time signature, allowed the tune to cross over into mainstream popularity. Hiding complexity within accessibility is a surefire way for a song to earn my adoration, so Take 5 had huge appeal...take five over at the Pharmacy

 

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