Bobby Watson

  • Get low with these bass features

    The bass player is very important in all these new compositions, so they also add to our growing Bass Corner repertoire.

    Both Bass-ment by Kenny Drew and The Fuzz by Bobby Jaspar feature the bass playing the melody. Important bass lines that hold the whole arrangement together are found in Bill Hardman’s Jazz Messengers classic Politely and Bobby Watson’s Lemoncello.

    Bertha Hope’s Book’s Bok starts with the bass doubling the melody with the piano, and then moves into an important rhythmic accompaniment line. Bertha’s solo piano arrangement is available, as is a recording of it by pianist Glenn Zaleski.

    Drummer Billy Drummonds opening 7/4 bass line had been going over in his head for quite some time before the rest of his composition Dubai came to him. As Billy is one of the gifted drummers who is included in our Drum Corner, we explore both a transcription of his playing behind the melody sections and his soloing over the ending bass line vamp. We also have some 7/4 exercises and groove patterns available.

    Check out this video of Billy talking about and playing Dubai! Be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more exclusive interviews of composers sharing their perspectives as well as tutorials and performances.

  • 12/17/10 jazzleadsheets.com additions

    B’s A Plenty - Elmo Hope This is another great Elmo composition, the opening track on his classic 1959 Elmo Hope Trio album. We’re not really sure what the title means. However, a few nights ago I saw Bertha Hope while I was performing at the Jazz Standard. Bertha’s not sure, but during the period when B’s A-Plenty was written, Elmo was naming quite a few of his titles for her, like Minor Bertha. Bertha always thought the “B” meant her. When I saw Bertha I was playing in a special tribute to Johnny Griffin with pianist/composer Norman Simmons and the Fiftieth Anniversary Big Soul Band. This special evening included an on-stage phone call to the original trumpeter on the 1960 Big Soul Band recording: Clark Terry, who that day was celebrating his 90th birthday. Look for titles by Johnny Griffin and Norman Simmons soon, on jazzleadsheets.com.

    Dark Days - Robert Watson Bobby Watson is, for me, another easily recognizable composer who has created a wide variety of beautiful music over the years, all with his own distinctive stamp. I’ve always loved his ballads. Bobby is a very sensitive person, and when he is moved by something, he makes a powerful musical statement. The music tells you how he feels about Dark Days.

    Just Plain Talkin’ - Tadd Dameron This composition comes from Tadd’s Magic Touch album, where he arranged for larger groups. Just Plain Talkin’ was written for a nine-piece ensemble. Now, everyone can learn and play this great melody. If you’re familiar with Tadd’s writing, you’ll immediately recognize that this has to be a Tadd composition. Read more about this composition in the Historical Notes.

    WE’VE ALSO ADDED SOMETHING NEW - a new relationship with ejazzlines.com

    As most of you are probably aware, Second Floor Music has many combo and big band arrangements available through Hal Leonard. In addition to this relationship, we’re going to be able to make more product available through a new relationship with ejazzlines.com. We’re giving them permission to publish a Don Sickler Jazz Lines Edition series.

    This new series will give me the opportunity to make more arrangements available as they were recorded. The Don Sickler Jazz Lines Edition series will include full scores and recorded parts for compositions where the arrangements, especially because of the complexity of rhythm section parts, make it impossible to represent the music correctly as just a lead sheet.

    Since we’re also getting lots more requests for transcribed solos, this new relationship with ejazzlines gives us the opportunity to often make both a solo and the original arrangement available, and there will be links on both sites to help you connect the editions.

    I can see this can easily get confusing, so I’m going to immediately show you how this works: Jazzleadsheets.com has two more great Hank Mobley solos: Hank’s solo on Late Show and his solo on Deciphering The Message.

    Both titles are from the second edition of The Jazz Messengers, when Donald Byrd replaced Kenny Dorham. Second Floor Music has had two other arrangements available from this important recording session for years. Since the whole quintet recording session is now available as an album mp3 download (or as individual titles), we thought that, in addition to our new transcribed solos, we should make three more arrangements available from this recording session. Here are two links to the whole album: from Amazon or from iTunes.

    Here are links to the quintet arrangements that are available: Deciphering The Message Late Show Hank’s Symphony Infra-Rae Weird-O

    Let music make your holiday season more fun. Especially jazz music. Don Sickler

  • Three new composers

    Hello, music fans. For this week’s jazzleadsheets.com releases, I decided it would be fun to compare compositions by two gifted pianist/composers from Second Floor Music. The compositions start out with some definite similarities, but develop very differently. A Touching Affair by James Williams (first recorded in 1984) vs. Flamands by Don Friedman (first recorded in 1995)

    —- melodic similarities Both composers love the minor key, and they both started their compositions with a vamping piano/bass figure. Another striking similarity is the rhythmic shape and melodic contour of the opening phrase of each melody. This is where the similarity ends. Don’s opening G minor melodic phrase moves from the 5th up to the minor 7th then down to the 11th, while James’ opening F-sharp minor melodic phrase moves from the root up to the minor third then down to the minor 7th. —- melodic phrase development Don repeats the opening phrase melody, then keeps the melody almost intact, but in F minor. James develops his opening phrase over twelve measures. Interestingly, Don’s melody was originally spread over twelve measures when he first recorded it on his “Almost Everything” session. On his “Straight Ahead” session it’s developed over sixteen measures.

    You Never Leave My Mind by James Williams and Marc Ostrow This is the lyric version of A Touching Affair. It’s in a different, female friendly key. In addition to the vocal lead sheet, an accompaniment-only track is available, complete with full chorus (long form) solo section. Besides being a great composer and pianist, James Williams was also a champion for many other artists. He introduced me to Bobby Watson, Billy Pierce (and the other musicians on “Alter Ego”) and later, Donald Brown, Geoff Keezer and many other great artists.

    Horizon Reassembled by Bobby Watson The “Horizon Reassembled” CD reunites the exact same personnel that recorded together in 1991 and 1993. You can find more info about Horizon in the Historical Notes for this composition. Also, I want to mention that Second Floor Music has quite a few Bobby Watson “Horizon” combo arrangements available. Search by Recording Leader for "Bobby Watson & Horizon" on SecondFloorMusic.com. I’ve always loved Bobby’s music. He definitely has a strong compositional voice that is easy to recognize. Look for more of his compositions on jazzleadsheets.com soon.

    Sunset by Kenny Drew Kenny Drew is probably most known as one of the great rhythm section pianists. It’s hard to find artists that he didn’t record with. He’s also a gifted composer, and we’re introducing him on jazzleadsheets.com with one of his beautiful ballads. Kenny Drew is also the father of another exceptional pianist/composer, Kenny Drew, Jr., who is already represented in jazzleadsheets.com. Obviously, two Kenny Drew’s can be confusing, but we’ll try to make that confusion worthwhile as we bring you more of their great music.

    Thanks for visiting jazzleadsheets.com Don Sickler

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