Gary Burton: Four Mallets, One Vibraphone

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Gary Burton i i

Gary Burton. courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption courtesy of the artist
Gary Burton

Gary Burton.

courtesy of the artist

Here's a rare treat: a solo performance from six-time Grammy-winning vibraphonist Gary Burton. In his 50-year recording career, Burton has recorded in many different group configurations and made duo recordings with artists including bassist Steve Swallow, guitarist Ralph Towner and, most famously, pianist Chick Corea. However, in this session with KPLU/Jazz24 program host Abe Beeson, it's just Burton and his vibes — and it's wonderful.

During their conversation, Burton talks about the first time he performed in a duo setting with Corea. He also recalls the circumstances that caused him to master the technique of using four mallets (two in each hand) when playing the vibes, rather than just two, which was the standard when Burton first took up the instrument. Along the way, he also gives three masterful solo vibraphone performances.

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