02 March 2009

Brubeck's asymmetrical rhythms

Has it really been 50 years since the Dave Brubeck Quartet recorded and released Take Five, composed by the group's saxophonist Paul Desmond? In the ensuing decades, this piece, written in 5/4 time, has become a jazz classic.

Two years later the group recorded Unsquare Dance, composed in 7/4 time.

I've always had an affinity for Brubeck's music, not only because it's great music, but because of his affection for asymmetrical rhythms, which are very common in Greek and Greek Cypriot folk music. Much of the music I have composed over the years is in similar rhythms, which are fairly rare in western music.

Brubeck is in his 89th year. Long may he continue to make music.

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