The Squid's Ear Magazine
Squidco's Memorial Day Sale, Save 10% to 15% Fri-Monday!


Stevens, John

Search and Reflect [BOOK]

Stevens, John: Search and Reflect [BOOK] (Rockschool)

A reprinting of drummer/percussionist John Steven's music workshop manual used in his London-based organisation Community Music with practical application for running music workshops based on improvisation, originally published in 1985, this edition was re-published by Rockschool in 2007, with additional forewords by Steve Beresford and Maggie Nicols.
 

Price: $35.95
Price Was: $39.95
Squidco Memorial Day Sale!:
Save $4.00




Quantity:

Out of Stock

Quantity in Basket: None

Log In to use our Wish List
Shipping Weight: 30.00 units

product information:

Personnel:



John Stevens-author


Click an artist name above to see in-stock items for that artist.




128 pages, sprial bound, 8.8 x 0.7 x 11.8 inches

UPC: 1902775694

Label: Rockschool
Catalog ID: 1902775694
Squidco Product Code: 28607

Format: BOOK
Condition: New
Released: 2007
Country: UK
Packaging: Book

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"This music workshop manual documents the pieces used by the London-based organisation Community Music in its workshops. The value in these pieces lies in their practical application and they are an excellent tool for every music workshop leader, for every music teacher, and for individual musicians with an interest in improvisation. The pieces are designed to encourage more people to participate in group music-making and therefore cater as much for the musically inexperienced as for the proficient musican. Each piece includes detailed guidance, but only a few include musical notation. They may be played or sung.

An introduction - Preliminaries - offers invaluable advice on how to run an effective improvisation workshop. The manual is then divided into two sections - Rhythm and Improvisation. In the Rhythm Section, the twelve pieces aim to help develop rhythmic skills - maintaining regular tempo, independence, and overall rhythmic awareness. The author demonstrates the essence of timekeeping with the basic unit of ONE TWO. This is presented with clear guidelines for its practice and development, stage by stage. Later, the Rhythm Tree chapter teaches how to play 3 over 4, 5 over 4, and 7 over 4, with many practical ideas and exercises for workshop use. Oddseven explores the harmonic possibilities of a scale within a rhythmic framework.

The Improvisation Section deals with specific processes and skills which help to prepare the way for a sensitive, concentrated approach to create group interaction and individual spontaneity. Beginning with three preparatory exercises to encourage each individual to maintain a balance between being a receptive ear and having creative freedom, this section continues with Click Piece (focussing on short sounds, independence and connectiveness), Sustain (focussing on long sounds and breathing) and a further 14 pieces which develop listening and playing skills within a group environment.

Search and Reflect was first published in 1985 by Community Music, with a foreword by Christopher Small. This edition is re-published by Rockschool in 2007, with additional forewords by Steve Beresford and Maggie Nicols.

About John Stevens
John Stevens (1940-1994) was one of the pioneers of free improvisation in the UK. The son of a tap dancer, he began to listen to jazz as a child. While doing his National Service, he studied drums at the Royal Air Force School of Music in Uxbridge. There, he met saxophonist Trevor Watts and trombonist Paul Rutherford, two musicians who became close collaborators. The Spontaneous Music Ensemble ("SME"), which he co-founded in the mid-1960s with Trevor Watts, explored a form of improvised music that was not dependent on conventional harmony and timekeeping. SME performances at their London base, The Little Theatre Club, could range from duos to 12-piece ensembles.

Early lineups would invariably feature trumpeter Kenny Wheeler and saxophonist Evan Parker but Stevens played alongside a large number of prominent free improvisors in the SME, including Derek Bailey, Peter Kowald and Julie Tippetts. He also worked with jazz musicians such as pianist Gordon Beck, bassist Ron Matthewson and guitarist Allan Holdsworth. From the 1970s, the make-up of the SME began to settle down to a regular group of Stevens, Nigel Coombes playing violin, and Roger Smith playing guitar. John Stevens died in 1994.

About Community Music
In 1983 John Stevens co-founded Community Music, an organisation based in Islington, London, in order to take music to disadvantaged groups who would not normally get the chance to receive professional music guidance. Its work drew upon John's long experience of running improvisation workshops at Ealing College and elsewhere, from the early 1970s onwards. The pieces in Search and Reflect grew out of the musical philosophy established by John Stevens and developed by him and his musician colleagues at Community Music. The writing of the book itself was a collective project by this group with the aim of exploring how best to present John's ideas as teaching titles. Thus the pieces in this manual have been thoroughly road-tested in hundreds of workshops."


128 pages, sprial bound, 8.8 x 0.7 x 11.8 inches

Artist Biographies

"John William Stevens (10 June 1940 in Brentford, Middlesex - 13 September 1994 in Ealing, west London) was an English drummer. He was one of the most significant figures in early free improvisation, and a founding member of the Spontaneous Music Ensemble (SME).

Stevens was born in Brentford, the son of a tap dancer. He used to listen to jazz as a child, but was initially more interested in drawing and painting (media through which he also expressed himself throughout his life). He studied at the Ealing Art College and then started work in a design studio, but left at 19 to join the Royal Air Force. He studied the drums at the Royal Air Force School of Music in Uxbridge, and while there met Trevor Watts and Paul Rutherford, two musicians who became close collaborators.

In the mid-1960s Stevens began to play in London jazz groups alongside musicians like Tubby Hayes and Ronnie Scott, and in 1965 he fronted a septet. Influenced by the free jazz he was hearing coming out of the United States by players like Ornette Coleman and Albert Ayler, his style began to move away from fairly traditional be-bop to something more experimental.

In 1966 SME was formed with Watts and Rutherford and the group moved into the Little Theatre Club at Garrick Yard, St. Martin's Lane, London to develop their new music. In 1967 their first album, Challenge, was released. Stevens then became interested in the music of Anton Webern, and the SME began to play generally very quiet music. Stevens also became interested in non-Western musics.

The SME went on to make a large number of records with an ever changing line-up and an ever changing number of members, but Stevens was always there, at the centre of the group's activity. He also played in a number of other groups, drumming in Watts' group Amalgam and later forming bands like Freebop and Fast Colour, for example, but the SME remained at the centre of his activities.

In the latter part of 1967 Evan Parker joined the SME and worked closely with Stevens in the group, eventually becoming one of the longest standing members. He later summed up Stevens' approach to improvising in two basic maxims: if you can't hear another musician, then you're too loud; and there is no point in group improvisation if what you are playing doesn't relate to what other members of the group are playing.

Stevens also devised a number of basic starting points for improvisation. These were not "compositions" as such, but rather a means of getting improvisational activity started, which could then go off in any direction. One of these was the so-called "Click Piece" which essentially asked for each player to repeatedly play a note as short as possible.

Stevens played alongside a large number of prominent free improvisors in the SME, including Derek Bailey, Peter Kowald, Julie Tippetts and Robert Calvert, but from the mid-1970s, the make-up of the SME began to settle down to a regular group of Stevens, Nigel Coombes playing violin, and Roger Smith playing guitar. During the mid-1970s Stevens played regularly with guitarist and songwriter John Martyn as part of a trio that included bassist Danny Thompson. This line up can be heard on Martyn's 1976 recording Live at Leeds.

From 1983 Stevens was involved with Community Music (CM), an organisation through which he took his form of music making to youth clubs, mental health institutions and other unusual places. Notes taken during these sessions were later turned into a book for the Open University called Search and Reflect (1985). In the late 70s and early 80s John was a regular performer at the Bracknell Jazz Festival.

Aside from SME, Stevens also ran or helped to organise groups that were more jazz or jazz-rock based, such as Splinters, the John Stevens Dance Orchestra, Away, Freebop, Folkus, Fast Colour, PRS, and the John Stevens Quintet and Quartet. He also contributed significantly to Trevor Watts' group Amalgam and Frode Gjerstad's Detail, as well as collaborating with Bobby Bradford on several occasions.

The SME continued to play, the last time being in 1994 with a group including John Butcher. Stevens died later that year."

-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Stevens_(drummer))
5/23/2024

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.


Track Listing:
Related Categories of Interest:


Book
Percussion & Drums

Search for other titles on the label:
Rockschool.


Recommended & Related Releases:
Other Recommended Releases:
Bradford, Bobby
Love's Dream
(EMANEM)



Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought:
Taylor, Cecil Mixed To Unit
Structures Revisited
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Bringing together two essential and impeccably remastered 1960's Cecil Taylor albums — Cecil Taylor Unit Structures and Cecil Taylor Unit Mixed — presenting both traditional influences and Taylor's unique approaches to modern jazz, featuring two septets with musicians including Jimmy Lyons, Henry Grimes, Archies Shepp, Ted Curson, Andrew Cyrille, Roswell Rudd, Sunny Murray, &c.
Ayler, Albert
Spirits Rejoice & Bells Revisited
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Revisiting two of the most essential and influential albums of saxophonist Albert Ayler's discography, both recorded in 1965 — Spirits Rejoice in a sextet and Bells in a quintet — both drawing from some of NY's finest players including Charles Tyler, Henry Grimes, Gary Peacock, Sunny Murray, Donald Ayler and Lewis Worrell, properly remastered to showcase Ayler's stunning conceptions in free jazz.
Prevost, Eddie
An Uncommon Music For the Common Man [BOOK]
(Matchless)
Percussionist, Improviser and AMM founding member Eddie Prévost's fourth book presents a fascinating series of reflections and challenging insights on music in its various forms, and the development of improvised music at the intersection of contemporary compositional and conceptual forms; alongside a personal history of Prevost's life and his relationship with music.
Roman Radkovic Collective
Televize [VINYL]
(Mappa)
A Slovokian experimental group with rock roots and a somewhat DaDa approach to unusual song forms using perplexing repetitions and interventions, led by guitarist and vocalist Roman Radkovič with Josef Novák on keyboard, Jiří Šíla on accordion, Zdeněk Řihošek on harmonica & double bass Zdeněk Caha on drums & voice, and Miloš Šandera on percussion.
Aarni, Olli
Mustikoita Ja Kissankelloja [VINYl]
(Mappa)
Translating to "Blueberries and cat bells", Finnish electronic composer Olli Aarni's sound world is quick paced and surprisingly dense considering an overall feeling of brightness, sounds flashing and swirling by in strange segments of acousmatic exhilaration, pausing form moments before seizing his listener once more with swift streams of alien soundscapes; brilliant.
Leap Of Faith
Phenomena
(Evil Clown)
Two founding member of Leap of Faith, multi-reedist and multi-instrumentalist PEK and cellist and percussionist Glynis Lomon. present two improvisations themed on waves and particle transformations, using microphone techniques to enhance Lomon's bowing, in a set deploying aquasonic, daxophones, gongs, Englephone, contrabassoon, tromboon, and much more.
Futterman, Joel
Silhouettes
(Progressive Records)
This '93 solo concert at Norfolk Academy in Virginia finds free jazz pianist Joel Futterman reflecting on standards and jazz repertoire by inference & reference, improvising over 7 original compositions and Coltrane's "Naima", with moments of lyrical delicacy, savvy swinging sections, and reflective Monk moods, all filtered through his Futteran's powerful creative drive.
Chicago Underground Quartet
Good Days
(Astral Spirits)
19 years after the last Chicago Underground Quartet album, this session with Rob Mazurek on piccolo trumpet, electronics & bells, Jeff Parker on electric guitar, and Chad Taylor on drums, percussion and newcomer Josh Johnson on synth bass & keys is a warm reunion, with individual compositions from Taylor, Mazurek & Parker, and two solo pieces by Mazurek and Taylor.
Rempis / Rosaly Duo
Codes / Myths [2 CDs]
(Aerophonic)
Chicago percussionist Frank Rosaly relocated to Amsterdam in 2016, but his 20+ year collaboration & friendship with Chicago saxophonist Dave Rempis continues, as evidenced in this live performance at Elastic Arts in 2018 during Rosaly's visit back to the Windy City, rewarding listeners with 2 CDs experiencing the two reacquaint through beautifully paced, adventurous dialog.
Berne, Tim / Nasheet Waits
The Coanda Effect
(Relative Pitch)
A tour de force saxophone duo between two masterful New York players--alto saxophonist Tim Berne and drummer Nasheet Waits--recording live at The Sultan Room in Brooklyn NY in 2019, in two impressive dialogs: "Tensile" for nearly 40 minutes of articulate expression and powerful rhythmic interaction; and the more introspective "5See" of impressive technique and intention.
Tipple (Gjerstad / Norton / Watson)
Cartoon Heart
(Relative Pitch)
The trans-Atlantic Tipple Trio of David Watson on guitar & smallpipes, Kevin Norton on percussion & drums, and Frode Gjerstad on saxophone, clarinet & alto flute in their 5th album since 2010, a studio recording from the NY area of 15 succinct and diverse approaches to free improvisation, each player shining uniquely and in extraordinary group interplay.
Dinner Party, The (Adrian Northover / Pierpaolo Martino / Vladimir Miller)
Wednesday Afternoon
(FMR)
Comprised of Anglo-Russian pianist Vladimir Miller (Moscow Composers Orchestra), Italian double-bassist Pierpaolo Martino (Mondegreen, Howl and Machine3) and British saxophonist Adrian Northover (The Remote Viewers, London Improvisers Orchestra), this collective improv trio brings a lyrical and melodic approach to their performances of graceful and cultivated conversation.
Gluck, Bob (Wolper / Azmeh / Filiano / Tabbal)
Early Morning Star
(FMR)
NY pianist & composer Bob Gluck's band with Gluck on piano, Andrea Wolper on voice, Kinan Azmeh on clarinet, Ken Filiano on bass, and Tani Tabbal on drums, blends passionate songs of social justice with captivating improvisational interplay, balancing a love of beautiful melody and sonic innovation, powerful rhythms, and exhilarating interactions between players.
Schindler, Udo
PNEUMA_Sax+Erde
(FMR)
Reedist and mutli-instrumentalist Udo Schindler's first instrument was a soprano sax, and this solo concert at Atelier Ekkelancj Götze in Munich in 2018 brings to the foreground his 40 years of experience, advanced technique, and creative approach to this capricious and demanding instrument, performing a 2-part free-form "PNEUMA-Sax+Erde" and an encore.
Greene, Burton / Guillaume Gargaud
Magic Intensity
(Chant Record)
Renowned pianist and composer Burton Greene joins French composer and improvising guitarist Guillaume Gargaud performing on acoustic guitar, for four duo improvisations recorded at Tilo's Ark, in Weesp, The Netherlands in 2019, in crisp & often rapid dialog that uses space and reflective moments well, the duo joined by Tilo Baumheier on flute for three pieces.
Virtual Company (Fell / Wastell / Bailey / Gaines)
Virtual Company
(Confront)
IST, configured as the duo of double bassist Simon H. Fell and cellist/percussionist Mark Wastell, performing a virtual quartet at London's Cafe OTO, using using pre-recorded fragments of solo work from late guitarist Derek Bailey and tap dancer Will Gaines, combined with sections of silence of unforeseeable length, and then combined with the live musicians; amazing.
ICP Tentet
Tetterettet
(Corbett vs. Dempsey)
10 years after drummer Han Bennink, pianist Misha Mengelberg, and saxophonist Willem Breuker formed the ICP co-op, Bennink & Mengelberg formed this 10-piece "Tetterettet", an all-star international group including Peter Brotzmann, Tristan Honsinger, John Tchicai, this their first incredible and far-ranging album, remastered and available on CD for the first time.
Dresser, Mark Seven (Nicole Mitchell / Ehlrlich / GoGwilt / Dessen / White / Black / McLagan)
Ain't Nothing But A Cyber Coup & You
(Clean Feed)
The 2nd album for East/West Coast double bassist and composer Mark Dresser's Seven band, in a diverse set of lyrically intricate Dresser compositions using unusual and compelling rhythmic structures, with Nicole Mitchell on flute, Marty Ehrlich on clarinets & sax, Keir GoGwilt on violin, Michael Dessen on trombone, Joshua White on piano, and Jim Black on drums.
Parker, Evan / Daunik Lazro / Joe McPhee
Seven Pieces. Live At Willisau 1995
(Clean Feed)
1995 recordings of the superb saxophone trio of Evan Paker on tenor & soprano, Daunik Lazro on alto & baritone, and Joe McPhee on alto & soprano, plus alto clarinet and pocket trumpet, a group that went undocumented until this live concert tape at Willisau was discovered.
Laubrock, Ingrid / Tom Rainey
Buoyancy
(Relative Pitch)
Drawing on several years and many shared projects, the duo of Ingrid Laubrock (sax) and Tom Rainey (drums) recorded this excellent album of sophisticated improvisation at the end of a 17-date tour, performing for a studio audience at Audio for the Arts in Madison, Wisconsin.
Guy, Barry / Eddie Prevost / Evan Parker / Keith Rowe
Supersession [REMASTERED, REPACKAGED, ADDITIONAL TEXT]
(Matchless)
Recorded at a concert in London, September 1984, this supersession brings AMM stalwarts Keith Rowe and Eddie Prevost together with saxophonist Evan Parker and bassist Barry Guy for an amazingly diverse and cohesive long improvisation.
Parker, Evan / Joe Morris / Nate Wooley
Ninth Square
(Clean Feed)
The extraordinary trio of three masterful players from different generations who have broken with convention while playing within free forms--Evan Parker on sax; Joe Morris on guitar; and Nate Wooley on trumpet--performing live at Firehouse 12 in Connecticut, 2014.
Wooley, Nate (w/ Ingrid Laubrock, Sylvie Courvoisier & Matt Moran)
Battle Pieces
(Relative Pitch)
"Battle Pieces" was conceived as a background for an improviser, using linguistics, tape processes & aleatoric concepts to fashion an ever-shifting composition that supplies the soloist with information within the context of an ever-changing series of densities, velocities and silences.



The Squid's Ear Magazine

The Squid's Ear Magazine

© 2002-, Squidco LLC