• A Birthday Tribute to James Williams

    We were already working on some songs by James Williams when we realized it's his birthday today (March 8) - as good a day as any to add them to Four of James' songs are newly available. All of them are lyrical, concise, and memorable in his distinctive style; each of these songs has a form only 16 measures long. Two of them were recorded on James' second album as a leader, "Everything I Love." Thoughts is a gentle, introspective Latin song; a piano part is available showing James' intro and fills from the recording. For My Nephews is a beautiful, warm-toned 3/4 song that has been recorded quite a number of times; besides the quartet version on "Everything I Love", James played it in duo settings with bassists Dennis Irwin and Ray Drummond, as well as another quartet with saxophonist Clifford Jordan. James' solo piano arrangement of this song is also available with an exclusive recording by Kenny Drew, Jr.

    Wishful Thinking comes from James' third album as a leader, "Images (Of Things To Come)." A bright-sounding song despite its minor key, it was recorded with a funky Latin-rock feel but could also work with other kinds of grooves. Finally, Roadlife is one of James' most fun songs, a swinging 16-measure blues. First recorded by James with an all-star trio with Ray Brown and Elvin Jones, we also have a video of a large ensemble performance led by pianist Jonathan Batiste. It's been recorded by several other pianists including Mulgrew Miller, Eric Reed and Glenn Zaleski.

    One of James' nephews was the drummer Tony Reedus, who we are now also introducing as a composer on The Far Side is the title track on Tony's first album as a leader; it's an uptempo burner with plenty of drum breaks. We also have his rhythmic minor blues head Minor Thang. Tony's album "The Far Side" also has two songs by pianist Jonny King, now available as well: the uptempo The Stumbling Block and the bossa Song Of Gideon. Both have challenging, inventive changes in Jonny's signature style.

    One more composer - also a drummer - is newly represented: Steve Johns. We've featured Steve in several of our exclusive Minus You tracks, but now we have two lyrical, laid-back songs of his on Deep Blue and River's Edge were both recorded by two bands: Bill Moring's Way Out East and the quartet Native Soul.

  • Five new songs to kick off 2023

    Our first new arrivals in 2023 cover a variety of styles and tempos. First up is Nino's Scene, a sunny calypso song by Sergio Mihanovich recorded by Art Farmer. Curiously, Art's version is a studio recording that was marketed as a live album, with overdubbed applause.

    We have one newly added song each by pianists James Williams and Donald Brown. Both of these were recorded in quartet settings with saxophonist Billy Pierce, whom both played with in different incarnations of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers. Williams' Images (Of Things To Come) is an elegant, lyrical 3/4 song with a colorful set of changes. We also have an exclusive solo piano version by Kenny Drew, Jr., playing the composer's own arrangement. Blue Nostalgia is Donald Brown's take on a mid-'60s style associated with another onetime Jazz Messenger, Wayne Shorter. It's an uptempo song with a slightly irregular form and some quite advanced chords.

    We recently put up several co-written songs by trumpeter Jim Rotondi and tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander. One more is available now: Stay Straight, a sequel to the earlier Straight Up. This lively uptempo swinger is a variation of the Straight Up theme in a different key, with a new bridge 16 measures long instead of 8. A full set of horn parts is available for the sextet arrangement. Eric Alexander also played on the recording of Jose's Lament by pianist David Hazeltine. This laid-back song, which alternates between swing and a 12/8 Latin groove, comes from an album by drummer Joe Farnsworth also featuring bass legend Ron Carter.

  • Jim Rotondi and Eric Alexander - a dynamic duo as players and composers

    Trumpeter Jim Rotondi and tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander are both great musicians and accomplished composers in their own right, but they have also collaborated to write several fun, challenging and groovy songs they've recorded together. We've had Biru Kirusai up on for a while; five more co-composed songs of Jim's and Eric's are now available. The earliest of these is Straight Up, first recorded in 1992 as the title track of Eric's first album as a leader. This high-energy uptempo blues with a bridge was later recorded by Jim and Eric with the cooperative sextet One For All. Burner's Waltz is a modal 3/4 song dedicated to, and recorded with, master organist Charles Earland, the "Mighty Burner," with whom the two composers played extensively. Likewise Mode For Mabes honors another veteran collaborator, pianist Harold Mabern. This one features a medium Latin-rock groove and a piano intro vamp in Mabern's distinctive style. Two more come from Jim's 1997 album "Jim's Bop": the slow, laid-back Last Call and the angular medium-up King Of The Hill.

    In addition to lead sheets, all of these songs have parts available for the arrangements heard on the original recordings. All are quintet arrangements except for Mode For Mabes which is for sextet.

  • New arrivals in Piano Corner, and some cool jazz classics

    Our two latest additions to the Piano Corner are very different. First is Geoffrey Keezer’s Premonition, a subtly ominous medium-slow song that packs a lot of rhythmic and harmonic variety into a short form. Originally recorded on Roy Hargrove’s debut album as a leader, our lead sheets reflect this first version. James Spaulding recorded this song in a different key, playing the rarely featured bass flute; we have a lead sheet based on this recording as well. Geoffrey’s solo piano arrangement is available as well as exclusive audio, video and score of a duo version he recorded with bassist Daryl Johns.

    On Fletcher Henderson's Soft Winds we now have a piano melody and solo transcription from Art Tatum’s 1944 trio recording. As with many Art Tatum solos, this one may take a few listenings to fully comprehend! This is a great opportunity to get an in-depth look at the style of one of the most virtuosic soloists of the Swing Era.

    Two classics of 1950s “cool jazz” are also now available. Tasty Pudding is a mellow minor-key swinger by Al Cohn, which has been recorded in quite a variety of different keys, tempos, and arrangements. We have no less than six versions available: the original Miles Davis recording with Al’s full septet arrangement, and condensed scores for versions by Chuck Wayne, Stan Getz and Bob Brookmeyer , Chet Baker, Dave Frishberg, and Herb Geller.

    Also recorded by Chet Baker is In A Little Provincial Town by tenor saxophonist/flutist Bobby Jaspar - a charming, romantic ballad with a rhythmic double-time intro. Our lead sheets are based on Bobby’s own 1956 quintet recording, but we also have melody parts reflecting the arrangements recorded by Chet and by J.J. Johnson. J.J.’s is the best-known recording of this song and features Bobby on flute with the classic rhythm section of Tommy Flanagan, Wilbur Little and Elvin Jones.

  • if you got an email from us . . .

    Hi, customers.
    You may have recently received an email from that has information from your orders from the last few years.
    The part of the website that sends emails to customers has apparently not been working correctly for a few years. The tech guy fixed it yesterday. Now it's sending out all the backlogged notifications. No need for you to worry, all is secure and you are not being charged again.
    We apologize!
    Check out the new music we have!

    Maureen Sickler

  • Bebop classics by Bennie Harris, plus one more from Don Friedman

    We're excited to bring the music of Bennie Harris (affectionately known as "Little" Bennie Harris) to the catalog. Bennie was a trumpeter and composer associated with the original bebop scene in the '40s. Several of his compositions have become standards, but they're not always properly credited. Wahoo, one of two Harris songs now on, has often hidden in plain sight: it's frequently played as a shout chorus for the Juan Tizol standard Perdido, whose chord progression it shares. Wahoo definitely stands alone as its own song; our lead sheet is based on the first issued recording, a live version by Tadd Dameron's quintet.

    Bennie Harris stopped playing in the '50s, but he remained closely connected to the scene as a talent scout, helping to launch the careers of younger hard bop musicians such as Joe Gordon and Tina Brooks. Evidently, he was still composing in the '60s, as shown by Mid Nite Lament. This beautiful, haunting ballad is still very obscure but, by making the lead sheet available, we hope it will get the recognition it deserves. It was recorded in 1963 in Los Angeles by alto saxophonist Earl Anderza, featuring the brilliant but under-recognized trumpeter Dupree Bolton; this recording was unreleased until 2007. We also now have a video of this song on our YouTube channel, played by alto saxophonist Elijah Shiffer and pianist Ben Rosenblum at the studio.

    One more Don Friedman song is also now available. From A To Z is a Friedman classic—equal parts bossa and baroque. Like others of his songs, Don recorded this one several times in a variety of settings and tempos. Our lead sheet is based on the last recording of this song, from his quartet album "Friday A.M." In 2011, Don recorded it in a duo setting with then 15-year-old bass prodigy Daryl Johns at Van Gelder Studio in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. Exclusive audio and video is available as well as for the other songs Don and Daryl recorded at this session.

  • Dedicated to Phineas Newborn, Jr.

    Don Sickler: I can still remember the thrill of meeting the legendary pianist Phineas Newborn, thanks to composer/pianist James Williams. James first brought him to our rehearsal studio in NYC to go over music for some upcoming projects James had planned for Phineas, probably in the early 1980s.

    Phineas Newborn, Jr., can already be found on playing Ray Bryant's Reflection on the classic Roy Haynes trio session "We Three," recorded at Rudy Van Gelder's Hackensack studio in 1958. Pianist James Williams would have only been seven years old at that time, so he may not have been familiar with Phineas then. On the other hand, the astute James Williams might have already been digging Phineas' playing! They were both in Memphis.

    Phineas is connected to SFM/jazzleadsheets in other ways: he was the first pianist to record Clifford Brown's Daahoud in a piano trio context in 1956. For a real treat, check out Phineas playing Ray Bryant's classic Cubano Chant (solo piano in 1979) [click on the album cover with Ray's giant hands and scroll down to see the video].

    Now jazzleadsheets wants to celebrate Phineas Newborn, Jr., with five tribute pieces by three of our composers. Phineas was a big time hometown hero to both James and Donald Brown. Geoffrey Keezer also got to meet and hang out with Phineas through James. Check out how Phineas inspired these composers!

    -- by James Williams
    Phineas: The Living Legend
    Fond Times With Junior

    -- by Donald Brown

    --by Geoffrey Keezer
    Newborn Spirit
    Waltz For Phineas

  • Buddy Montgomery is "Here Again" with many more!

    Pianist and vibraphonist Buddy Montgomery was a unique and fascinating composer who deserves wider recognition. We've had his song Here Again on for a while; now we're making four more of Buddy's songs available. Three of these were recorded on his 1997 trio album, "Here Again."

    Aki's Blues is a 24-measure blues head, full of Buddy's signature subtle harmonic detail.

    The laid-back medium swing tempo of Hob Nob With Brother Bob makes it particularly fun, combined with its blues-infused melody. The piano transcription of Hob Nob With Brother Bob shows both in and out heads, for an in-depth look at how Buddy creatively and expressively interpreted his own melody.

    Buddy recorded two completely different versions of 1,000 Rainbows, in 1977 and 1997. It's a funky song with a slightly mysterious mood; both versions are built around rhythmic bass lines. The very simple earlier version has lead sheets plus second parts. A piano melody transcription and bass part from the "Here Again" album are available.

    The fourth newly available Buddy Montgomery song is My Sentiments Exactly, from his 1988 album "So Why Not?" This one is a funk classic that guarantees a good time. It has a stop-time intro that really showcases Buddy's effortless phrasing and rhythmic feel.

    In 2019, rising star pianist Isaiah J. Thompson recorded a tribute album of Buddy Montgomery songs, including these four as well as Here Again. These versions feature Isaiah's own rearrangements, which are discussed on in the descriptions under his album cover for each song.

    Four other newly added songs on include Booker Little's Larry-LaRue. Named for his son and daughter, this was Booker's second recorded composition. It's a beautiful song with that bittersweet mood that really defines the Booker Little style. Full score and parts are available for the original arrangement (3 horns, bass, and drums) played by the Max Roach Quintet.

    Gwen is a unique song: a ballad written by master drummer "Philly" Joe Jones, originally played by the composer himself on piano! This romantic bebop ballad comes from Jones' classic album "Showcase." From trumpeter Joe Gordon we have Diminishing, a cooking, modal uptempo swinger with a tight two-horn arrangement.

    Finally, Dexter Gordon's iconic Cheese Cake is now available. Perhaps his best-known composition, our lead sheet is quite detailed with several of Dexter's melody variations as well as Sonny Clark's piano fills. We also have a transcription of his solo--lyrical, catchy, and clearly articulated throughout, this is one of the all-time classic hard bop solos.

  • New Arrivals in Piano Corner

    We are continuing to expand's Piano Corner with seven newly added songs by four of our great pianists. All but one of these songs have Solo Piano Arrangements. Cecilia Coleman, who celebrated a birthday yesterday (September 8), wrote The Man In The Brown Hat in tribute to Thelonious Monk. It's a quirky medium-up song that accurately captures that unique Monk bounce. In addition to our lead sheets we have a piano lead sheet showing the right-hand voicings on her recording; these are expanded to two hands in Cecilia's Solo Piano Arrangement. Cecilia also wrote an easy solo arrangement for I Deal, a swinging blues head by master hard bop pianist Sonny Clark. Sonny's comping on the in head as well as his solo are available - again transcribed by Cecilia Coleman. These detailed transcriptions are an invaluable resource for exploring the Sonny Clark sound.

    From Bertha Hope we have A Wise And Wonderful Book, an appropriately deep ballad; Between Two Kings, which combines ballad and bossa sections, and Da La Senidras ("Sardine Salad" spelled backwards), an angular medium-up song. Bertha's solo piano arrangements are available with exclusive recordings by pianist Glenn Zaleski. Glenn also recorded his own interpretations of Between Two Kings and Da La Senidras; these recordings are available as well. We also have a melody transcription for one of Bertha's two recordings of A Wise And Wonderful Book.

    Finally, we have two more by Bertha's first husband, Elmo Hope. Monique (named for Elmo and Bertha's daughter) and Three Silver Quarters are exquisitely beautiful songs, both in slow 3/4 with irregular forms. These songs originally come from Elmo's 1963 album "Sounds From Rikers Island" and were later recorded, combined as a medley, by Bertha with Don Sickler for the 1998 tribute album "Hope Is In The Air." Don's Solo Piano Arrangement of Three Silver Quarters is available but has not yet been recorded.

  • Hi Voltage from Hank Mobley

    Hank Mobley's music is very popular on, and for a good reason: it makes you feel good to play it. We're excited to announce that all six songs from Hank Mobley's 1967 album "Hi Voltage" are now available on This album has sometimes been overlooked, but features an all-star lineup and plenty of fun, catchy songs. In particular, many of these songs are quite simple and we feel they can be great for younger or less experienced players and ensembles to learn the classic hard-bop style. Bossa De Luxe has been on the website for a while but the others are newly added.

    Going in album order, we first have High Voltage, a soul-jazz classic—not quite a blues—with a gospel-infused groove. Two And One is a modal medium-up swinger with a hip rhythmic kick. Hank's gorgeous, wistful ballad No More Goodbyes, the only quartet track on the album, features a detailed Hank Mobley melody transcription. Advance Notice is another rhythmic medium-up song while Bossa De Luxe is a medium-slow bossa with a slightly mysterious vibe. Finally, Flirty Gerty is another groover in the soul-jazz vein, this time a loping medium swing.

    All these songs except No More Goodbyes have sextet parts that reflect the arrangement on the recording. The lead sheets (first parts), second and third parts are available in transpositions for all melody instruments. Most of the songs have separate piano, bass, and drum parts as well as full scores.

    One other Hank Mobley song is newly available. Bossa For Baby comes from another 1967 album, "Far Away Lands." This charming, lyrical bossa was originally recorded in a quintet setting; second parts are available for the two-horn arrangement.

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