The Distance Between Ones

“It’s the distance between ones that determines tension-and-release in 4/4, because whereas in African music the separate rhythms are played apart from each other, American funk has been characterized by crossing rhythms within the one. The evenly measured, repeating gong of the one serves to tighten rhythmic interplay, challenging dancer and musician alike to construct the deep groove and then, by crossing rhythms, to transcend the implosive contractions of the one into improvised release, so that the dancer has access to unlimited possibilities for syncopated movement within the music. Music and dance become a polyrhythmic swirl and the measured insistence of the one becomes more like a multiplier than a denominator.”
Gary Jardim, “The Chic 4/4,” Village Voice, exact date unknown – cf. this earlier posted quote