Archives: December 2015

  • The Gigi Gryce Project and more

    Introducing The Gigi Gryce Project. We're excited to be releasing the first two tracks from The Gigi Gryce Project, Evening In Casablanca and Satellite. Lead sheets for ten of the Gryce compositions we recorded are already available on, but now we'll be able to add minus you tracks for all twelve of these wonderful compositions. Plus, we're expanding our editions to cover other Gryce recordings of the compositions and adding transcribed solos, giving you the opportunity for further insight into these great compositions and great soloists.

    In 1960, when Gigi started recording again as a leader, his rhythm section was centered around pianist Richard Wyands. The Gigi Gryce Project was also centered around Richard, with Gryce devotee Kenny Washington on drums and bassist Peter Washington rounding out the rhythm section. I elected to change Gigi's basic quintet front line of trumpet/alto sax to alto sax/tenor sax, using two of my favorite musicians, Bobby Porcelli on alto and Ralph Moore on tenor.

    With minus you tracks for every instrument, all musicians can have the experience of being part of the session. Stay tuned: we'll be releasing new titles and minus you tracks every week or so.

    With the recent online and DVD release of "Jaco: The Film" bringing renewed and well deserved attention to the late bassist Jaco Pastorius, we want to introduce pianist Jon Davis's beautiful tribute to the great musician, titled Ballad for Jaco. Jon had the honor of playing and recording with Jaco. Jon writes, "It was a life altering experience in that Jaco's musical inspiration and influence was such a powerful force." To premiere the ballad as a piano/bass duo he chose young bassist Daryl Johns, who was just 15 at the time of the recording and video of the session. Lead sheets and Rudy Van Gelder's exclusive audio of the duo are available.

    Geoffrey Keezer wrote Personal Space the day before the session for "Waiting In The Wings," his first album as a leader, recorded when he was only 17. Some years later, Geoffrey was the pianist accompanist for the 2009 Thelonious Monk International Bass Competition, where another young musician, 13-year-old bassist Daryl Johns, was one of the semifinalists. I got the two musicians together in 2011 for a duo session at Rudy Van Gelder's Studio. Geoffrey revisited Personal Space with Daryl playing the melody rubato for the first chorus. Piano solos from both versions are available, along with exclusive audio and video of the duo session.

    Vocalist/lyricist/composer Judy Niemack has Something To Say, and we have a lovely video of her singing it in the studio with guitarist Jeanfrançois Prins. Judy's complete track and a minus you track without vocal are both available in C minor

    TIP: You can find minus you titles by clicking on FEATURES in the top menu bar of every page and scrolling down to Minus You, then choosing For Instrumentalists or For Vocalists. Or type minus you in the search box at the top of every page (instrumental titles only). We'll be adding more in the coming weeks.

    Thanks for keeping the music alive!
    Don Sickler and the team

  • Celebrate Bobby Timmons' 80th Birthday 12/19/2015

    Moanin' is still a favorite with singers: Jazzmeia Horn, last month's winner of the prestigious 2015 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Vocals Competition, sang it in the finals. Nate Chinen, New York Times, reported: "Ms. Horn sealed her win with performances of the jazz standards Moanin' and Detour Ahead." Congratulations to Jazzmeia Horn!

    Check out all our Bobby Timmons music.

  • New arrangements for your holiday gigs!

    Happy Holidays from! Try our holiday arrangements: a beautiful new melody (Almost Christmas from Eddie Higgins and Roger Schore) plus jazzy recorded Don Sickler interpretations of well-known Holiday titles. Ready for you to play no matter what your instrumentation is. Check our New Arrivals list.

  •'s new Holiday Classic "Almost Christmas"

    Lena Seikaly (2015 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Vocals Competition semifinalist) is the voice behind's newest holiday video "Almost Christmas." With a beautiful voice singing a melody as timeless as any of your favorite holiday classics, this is the song you'll want to add to your repertoire!

    Eddie Higgins composed the instrumental version of this song, Moonlight On Kinkakuji, named after a Zen Buddhist temple in Kyoto. It was recorded on Eddie's last album, "Portraits Of Love," in 2008. When lyricist Roger Schore, a longtime friend of Eddie's and of his wife Meredith d'Ambrosio, heard this recording, he was inspired to write a Christmas-themed lyric. "Upon hearing that piece of music, I had the impulse to try and write a lyric for it. For whatever reason, the music and arrangement summoned up images of winter, snow and Christmas." He finished his lyric just in time for Lena to visit the studio and team up with pianist Cecilia Coleman and 18-year-old bassist Kanoa Mendenhall to record this memorable holiday song.

    This is the latest video from, a website geared to inspire, educate and supply a new generation of jazz artists with historical as well as current, innovative music. With a captivating performance by rising talents, Almost Christmas is sure to be a new Christmas standard! Especially if you add it to your Christmas repertoire! Of course, Eddie's composition is great for instrumentalists, too.

    Stay in touch; we plan to add more holiday titles in the next few days. Enhance your December gigs with new arrangements!

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