Song: Take Five
Artist: Dave Brubeck Quartet
Album: Time Out (1959)
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Dave Brubeck was an American jazz pianist and composer. Often regarded as a foremost exponent of “cool jazz”, his work is characterized by unusual time signatures and superimposing contrasting rhythms, meters, and tonalities. During his time in the US Army, Brubeck formed one of the first racially diverse bands and in 1951, formed the Dave Brubeck Quartet.
Time Out became Brubeck’s highest-selling album, and the first jazz album to sell over one million copies. The lead single from the album, “Take Five”, a tune written in 5/4 time, similarly became the highest-selling jazz single of all time. It’s called “Take Five” because of the unusual 5/4 meter. It was one of the first Jazz songs with a time signature other than the standard 4/4 beat or 3/4 waltz time. The album is a subtle blend of cool and West Coast jazz.
If you are new to jazz, this is a great place to start! If you’re already a jazz fan, it’s never a bad time to listen to a classic.