This excerpt comes from a live recording of Lee Konitz, playing the Lennie Tristano composition “317 East 32nd St.” Like all of Tristano’s compositions, the chords from this song are based on a pre-existing standard, “Out of Nowhere.” Konitz’s melodic idea in the first two measures perfectly demonstrates the typical bebop device of surrounding chord tones with neighbor notes and chromatic approaches, referred to as enclosure. Without pausing, Konitz shifts from these enclosures to a descending G major arpeggio. Measure 3 begins with a chromatic line that eventually shifts from the E♭7 chord back to Gmaj7 by surrounding the note D. All of the devices Konitz utilizes in this excerpt are common in the bebop melodic vocabulary, yet the step-wise motion balanced with surprising melodic leaps help keep the listener intrigued and demonstrates Konitz’s mastery of the vernacular.


Lee Konitz on "317 East 32nd St" from Live At The Confucius Restaurant (1955)