News For Lulu – Sonny Clark
A Latin/swing classic from pianist Sonny Clark: original sextet.
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- Recording: Sonny Clark - Sonny's Crib
- Recorded on: September 1, 1957
- Label: Blue Note (BLP 1576)
- Concert Key: F minor
- Vocal Range: , to
- Style: Latin/swing (medium)
- Trumpet - Donald Byrd
- Tenor Sax - John Coltrane
- Trombone - Curtis Fuller
- Piano - Sonny Clark
- Bass - Paul Chambers
- Drums - Art Taylor
In addition to melody parts, the second part tenor sax and third part trombone parts are also available, plus a separate Bass part. If you listen carefully to our except, you'll hear that bassist Paul Chambers plays differently in the first and third measures of what becomes a repeating two-measure pattern. The separate bass part really clarifies the bass line for the melody and Coda, and it also includes Paul's walking line for the bridge.
MP3 download information: The recording of News For Lulu is 8:34 in length, therefore iTunes makes it available "album only." For those of you who prefer to buy from iTunes, we want you to know that the lead sheet for Sonny's Crib from that album is also available here, so you might as well buy the album. The MP "album" comes with the original take (13:31) and an alternate take (9:53) of Sonny's Crib. In contrast to iTunes, Amazon makes most longer takes available separately, at a slightly higher price.
This sextet session was recorded just two months after Sonny Clark's "Dial 'S' For Sonny" Blue Note album, which was Sonny's first official album as a leader. You can learn more about Sonny's background leading up to the News For Lulu session in the historical notes to his composition Bootin' It. Clark had already recorded two dates with trombonist Curtis Fuller, but this was the only time he would record with John Coltrane. On December 15, 1957, Clark and Byrd recorded together on Lou Donaldson's album Lou Takes Off. He'd previously recorded four albums with bassist Paul Chambers and three with drummer Art Taylor. Two of these albums had the three musicians together as the rhythm section.
Coming soon: Hear a sample sample of what we're working on—etudes based on the chord progression of News For Lulu, a demonstration version plus Minus You audio to practice with.
This medium Latin tune has a very interesting bass line played by master bassist Paul Chambers. While the piano plays one line, the bass plays the same line but displaced by a beat to create an overlapping effect. It makes for a great exercise in time and focus.
This is a great one to practice along with the recording; you can not only lock up with P.C., but you can also play along with the all-star rhythm section of Sonny Clark on piano and Art Taylor on drums. If the overlapping bass part is a little too far outside your comfort zone, check out the Minus You version which has a simplified Basic Bass part.
July 21, 1931 – January 13, 1963
A remarkable composer and pianist whose special touch and articulation makes him instantly recognizable at the piano, Sonny (Conrad Yeatis) Clark recorded so much on the Blue Note label that he was practically their in-house pianist. This hard-bop mainstay was particularly noteworthy for his virtuosic right hand lines. Read more...