George Russell's book, The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization , first published in , was the first theoretical contribution to come from jazz, and was responsible for introducing modal improvisation which resulted in the seminal recording of Miles Davis' "Kind of Blue. Since it's publication, there have been scores of books on the market which have "borrowed" bits of the Concept's information, but there is only one original. Radical as it may be, the theory is more than one person's eccentricity, having considerable precedent in the work of Ravel, Scriabin, Debussy and in some of the learned works of Bach. The word "Lydian" is here derived from one of the classical Greek scale modes.
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George Russell's book, The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization , first published in , was the first theoretical contribution to come from jazz, and was responsible for introducing modal improvisation which resulted in the seminal recording of Miles Davis' "Kind of Blue. Since it's publication, there have been scores of books on the market which have "borrowed" bits of the Concept's information, but there is only one original.
Radical as it may be, the theory is more than one person's eccentricity, having considerable precedent in the work of Ravel, Scriabin, Debussy and in some of the learned works of Bach. The word "Lydian" is here derived from one of the classical Greek scale modes. Russell's root scale follows the natural overtone series and runs from C to C with F sharp, rather than the customary F natural of the major scale.
For searchers like Miles and Coltrane and Bill Evans, and many in the generations that followed them, Russell's theory provided a harmonic background and a path for further exploration. It also gave rise to the "modal" jazz movement that enjoyed great popularity in the 70's and 80's for better and for worse.
We should not underestimate the extent of Russell's enterprise. His work stands head-to-head with Arnold Schoenberg's "liberation" of the twelve-tone scale, the polytonal work of Stravinsky, and the ethnic scale explorations of Bartok and Kodaly. If you've listened to jazz during the last fifty years, you've heard a good deal of George Russell's ideas; he is one of the 20th century's great originals and one of its bravest innovators. Having finished this work, Russell is completing another volume on related elements which he has been simultaneously developing over the last several decades.
The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization was expanded several times over the years, and has grown greatly since its first appearance in It is with pride and pleasure that we present this fourth and final edition.
If you could sit down and write stuff like that out He wrote stuff like that and it was incredible. George Russell who at the time was working on his Lydian Chromatic Concept Here was a means for breaking free from tonal cliches while maintaining some amount of restraint.
Miles took his musicians into the studio for the first of two sessions for Kind of Blue in March, At the time modal jazz Originally, the idea for this kind of playing with the concept of composer George Russell. A must for the serious musician. Milestones, which was based on two modes He recorded Milestones with Coltrane on April 3, , and both men felt liberated by the new harmonic philosophy. All Rights Reserved. Click here to visit www.
Lydian Chromatic Concept Of Tonal Organization For Improvisation
What is the aim of the Lydian Chromatic Concept? What is the primary difference between the Lydian Chromatic Concept and all other theories of music? What is Tonal Gravity? Why is the Lydian Scale of paramount importance in this Concept? What is the fundamental difference between the Lydian and Major Scale? What is a Lydian Chromatic Scale?
The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization
Russell's work postulates that all music is based on the tonal gravity of the Lydian mode. Russell believed that dominant function was the driving force behind all harmonic motion. Russell focuses on the Lydian mode because it can be built with fifths. For instance, to construct a C Lydian scale one could list the first seven tones on the circle of fifths starting with C, the desired Lydian Tonic. Russell builds a prototype chromatic scale starting on the Lydian Tonic by stacking fifths, skipping the interval between the seventh and eighth tones. Thus the Lydian Chromatic Scale and all its derivatives contain only Pythagorean intervals.
This innovative band leader, influential composer, legendary educator and philosophically profound master of music devoted 50 years of tireless, purposeful development in forging and generously disseminating his visionary theoretical system. Maestro Russell's singular world-renowned theory reveals an objective, illuminating vista of interrelated and boundless insights into what music is telling us about its own innate nature and reciprocal architectonics. His hard-cover book, the fourth edition can be ordered directly from Concept Publishing through Amazon. Scroll down to the very bottom of this page to read a collection of selected wisdom quotes by many Jazz master innovators who either played in Mr. Russell's ensembles, collaborated with him or studied "The Concept" with him. Their philosphical attitude, sense of aesthetics and artistic vision continue to influence musicians around the world to this day. Andy Wasserman has been giving private lessons in the Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization since when he was granted certification directly by George Russell to teach "The Concept" in it's entirety.