“The Fibonacci Quartet Plays Improv” — a poem by Gerard Furey

September 8th, 2019

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 Image from Pixabay

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The Fibonacci Quartet Plays Improv

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They

start

right now.

Something new?

Some chords, progression.

Hold on there! This piece is moving,

building slowly, then steps it up into a minor

key, kind of bluesy maybe, and the drummer, of course, sets the pace for the bass player’s

just as steady thrumbing gait then escalates to the high frets and back and over I just can’t see which string, tip-sliding in purely tempo

ordered motion made emotion because by now our beings have been somehow cornered, arrested, and it’s not until the afterglow we come to know we don’t see our date, or our drink, or that our cigarette’s glowing embers

give all of us who sit at these dim lit tables that sense of mist, of night, of the lonely – now honed without our knowing by the pianist who seemed simply to be sitting but slyly was entoning the quietest chords, left hand (four beats), right (five more) and suddenly all fingers are skating, punctuating a cascade of notes all of which now take over the

narrative as we ache to embrace our soul’s secret wish to partake any piece of this pure luxuriance that may be Heaven made, or maybe Hell because we’re addicted and choose to stay because this is what we thirst; Wait!

Just how and when did this archtop Gibson come to take over the lead with chorded runs the like of which make you wish you never quit lessons.

And so it goes, each hallowed solo is followed with forms of applause from we groundlings;

not boisterous, no, just enough so each player knows

we know they know they have reached us

and this piece never

will happen

again

this

way.

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___

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Gerard Furey was born in Scranton, PA and raised in Pittsburgh. He had a standard ‘50s childhood and was introduced to jazz by his father who had a fantastic collection and one of the first stereo systems in the South Hills. Gerard taught high school Literature classes for 40 years. He is not a musician, but did have drum lessons from Tom Sedota, went to school with Robbie Klein and engaged in long philosophical discussions with Kenny Blake.

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2 comments on ““The Fibonacci Quartet Plays Improv” — a poem by Gerard Furey”

  1. Gerard-

    I love the idea and the execution. Great poem. First nightclub job I had in Pittsburgh was at the Top Shelf on Liberty Avenue – Kenny Blake and Spider Rondinelli were playing across the street!

    John

    1. Thank you! Each ‘stanzette’ has the number of syllables of the Fibonacci Sequence (1,1,2,3,5,8,13 . . .) up and then back again. Lot of finger counting but I thought of what I’d heard in gigs I’ve gone to and it got easier thinking of the music. How lucky we are to find that kind of music! And, not that the music’s not good now, but wasn’t Pittsburgh an amazing place to grow up in back when the mills were still up?

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