Armada of Bass Players

While Håvard, Joona and Fredrik are gearing up for the start of the fishing season, I’m left gritting my teeth with all my fishing stuff, flies, rods and reels left behind in Finland. (As I mentioned earlier, I had no space left in my luggage when moving to Copenhagen because of the double bass…) For the time being I have had no options to go and get them, and it looks like it may well be may before it happens… Lot’s of jazz and no fly fishing is still ok I keep telling myself…

Instead of fishing, I’ve been going to jam sessions. The importance of jam sessions cannot be undermined for jazz musicians. The roots of this social phenomenon were formed already before and during the bepop era, in 1940’s. Usually there is a set presented by the house band followed by performances of freely formed groups of  jazz musicians involving professional and amateur jazz cats alike. The music is improvised on the spot usually on top of the themes and structures of well known jazz standards.

Jam sessions keep musicians always on their toes since no group and session are the same. For the audience it is usually easy to point out, who is making music and who is not. Many times there can be 7 saxophone players waiting to get to show off their soloing skills and the poor bass player has to comp for the whole session since there is almost allways fewer bass players than saxophonists or piano players.

Of course, when this monday I went to Copenhagen’s Blågårds Apotek to get rid of my fishing angst and get to play some good jazz, there were not one or two other, but an armada of alltogether 7 (!) bass players waiting for their turn. I had my chance for two tunes, which was great fun after all.

These great photos from last monday’s session are courtesy of Michael Bauer and they are published under creative commons sa-3.0 license.

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