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Zach Arbogast, piano

Craig Burletic, bass

Rod Elkins, drums

Nick Vassar, guitar

This recital is presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Music Performance. Mr. Duncan is a student in the studio of Dr. W. Edwin Bingham and Christopher Clark.


Fine was originally a ballad composed as an assignment for a jazz theory class. It now features a fast tempo with a small number of closely related chords that lend a modal quality to the tune. The title is a reference to the writer's apathy to the task of applying titles to musical compositions. Fine has no melody.

The melody Notes is simply based on an "A" major pentatonic scale, with varying harmonies played beneath it. Notes features abrupt changes in character such as double-time passages, and alternate song forms for improvisation. Several genres and subgenres within and outside of the jazz spectrum are alluded to in the piece. These include gospel, blues, oriental music, modal jazz, and jazz fusion. The work also makes use of a variation of "rhythm changes". "Rhythm changes" is a term for a common harmonic progression in jazz music. It is based on the chord progression of George Gershwin's I've Got Rhythm (1930). Typically a composition based on "rhythm changes" is written in the key of b flat-major. In this instance, the progression is in a-minor.

O Ovo or The Egg, is a 1967 composition by Brazilian artist Hermeto Pascoal. The work was originally released on the eponymous Quarteto Novo album of the same year. Despite releasing only one album, the group consisting of Hermeto Pascoal, Theo de Barros, Airto Moreira, and Heraldo do Monte has been hugely influential in Brazilian jazz and instrumental music and in North American jazz and popular music. The composition features the baiao rhythm commonly associated with the Northeastern region of Brazil. O Ova's form shares many similarities with the blues. Hermeto Pascoal is a highly regarded multi-instrumentalist. His works show significant influences from avant-garde and experimental music.

Eulogy is an experiment in modal jazz. It was originally based in blues harmony, but now contains a chromatic harmonic structure. It also contains time changes. While most of Eulogy is in the odd meter of 7/8, it occasionally shifts to the simple meter of 4/4.

In A Sentimental Mood (1931) written by Duke Ellington, is a widely known jazz ballad. The song has been performed by a large number of other influential jazz artists. These musicians include John Coltrane, Sonny Rollins, Michael Brecker, Stan Stan Getz, Benny Goodman, Bill Evans, Oscar Peterson, Django Reinhardt, and Ella Fitzgerald. It employs a contrapuntal technique commonly referred to as "chromatic embellishment of static harmony".

Lucille, Lucille has been through several transformations. It originated as an experiment in atonality. Later, it became an attempt to demonstrate that free jazz does not necessarily need to rely on, or predominantly lean towards, pervasive dissonance and abrasive textures. Lucille, Lucille is neither atonal nor free, although it does contain a passage of collective improvisation. It also transitions through three styles of jazz music: ballad, swing and samba.

Fables of Faubus This satirically scornful1959 composition by jazz bassist Charles Mingus is one of the most unabashedly political works in the history of the genre. The composition is a sardonic protest to a 1957 event in which Arkansas governor Orval E. Faubus deployed the Arkansas National Guard in order to prevent the desegregation of a Little Rock high school by nine African American teenagers. The work originally contained blatantly bitter lyrics which Columbia Records judged to be too controversial for release. As a result, the original release on Mingus' seminal 1959 album Mingus Ah Um was instrumental. The original version, with lyrics, was later released in 1960 on the album Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus. Fables of Faubus features many shifts in style and tempo--something that is typical of Mingus' work. The original lyrics are:

Oh Lord, don't let them shoot us

Oh Lord, don't let them stab us

Oh Lord, don't let them tar and feather us

Oh Lord, no more swastikas!

Oh Lord, no more Ku Klux Klan!

Name me someone ridiculous

Governor Faubus

Why is he sick and ridiculous?

He won't permit intergrated schools

Then he's a fool!

Boo! Nazi fascist supremacists! Boo! Ku Klux Klan!

Name me a handful that's ridiculous

Bilbo. Faubus. Rockefeller. Eisenhower.

Why are they so sick and ridiculous?

Two, four, six, eight: they brainwash and teach you hate


Jomie Jazz Forum


Arts and Humanities | Fine Arts | Music | Music Performance

Marshall University Music Department Presents a Senior Recital, Bryce Duncan, saxophone