News

  • Five new composers May 28, 2011

    As I’m sure you’ve been able to see, we publish for a lot of great composers. This week we’re adding five new ones to jazzleadsheets.com. Except for Eddie Costa, who died five years before I got to New York, I’ve had the honor of knowing them personally.

    Of these additions, guitarist Chuck Wayne was the first on the jazz scene. He emerged in the early 1940s and contributed greatly to the new music that was being called bebop. His composition Slightly Dizzy will bring you right back to the energy of the bebop era. It illustrates a favorite device of composers and improvisers, borrowing and enhancing the chord changes of an American standard: this time, How High The Moon.

    Pianist Norman Simmons arrived on the recording scene in the early 1950s. Early on, he wrote a hit for prominent Chicago tenor saxophonist Paul Bascomb. This helped ensure a steady gig for his trio at important Chicago clubs that brought in guest artists, which in turn provided Norman the opportunity to accompany Charlie Parker, Coleman Hawkins, Wardell Grey and many more of the jazz greats. Norman has written many wonderful compositions that we’ll be exploring in the months to come. I decided to start your introduction to him with Stiffed, Norman’s clever composition based on the changes of Just Friends.

    Eddie Costa (piano and vibes) also emerged in the 1950s. He was the Down Beat Critics poll winner on both instruments in 1957. Unfortunately, he was killed in a car accident at thirty-one years of age, and he hadn’t spent much time writing his own original compositions. He did write a few, however, and we’ll be exploring them in the months to come. For now, enjoy his Blues Plus Eight.

    I miss bassist/composer Charles Fambrough, who died this past January, 2011. Charles had a long bout battling kidney failure. He loved music, and we always had beautiful conversations about music and musicians. Charles was still in his twenties when he wrote and recorded One For Honor with McCoy Tyner. He was not only one of the foremost bassists of his generation, but also a marvelous composer.

    Cecilia Coleman is the youngest of our five new composers, but she’s been on the NYC scene now for over a decade. She is originally from California, where she did some recording and composing before coming to New York. She’s a marvelous pianist/composer with a broad composing palette. If her name already looks familiar to you at jazzleadsheets.com, it’s because she’s the pianist on many of the tracks we’ve recorded for jazzleadsheets.com. Her own first composition to be posted is an interesting 3/4 adventure called Pearl.

    --Don Sickler

  • new May titles

    Dexter Gordon’s Le Coiffeur, a title with echoes of 1950s TV, but hipper

    Ronnie Mathews’s Dorian, an exploration of the dorian mode, along with Ronnie’s solo piano arrangement

    Basheer’s Dream by Gigi Gryce, from Kenny Dorham’s Afro-Cuban album

    Sound Within An Empty Room, a beautiful ballad by Fritz Pauer, played by Art Farmer and Pauer. Pauer’s solo piano arrangement available, too.

    The vocal version of Pauer’s instrumental ballad, with lyric by vocalist Mark Murphy, titled Empty Room

    Enjoy the music. Make time to play new music every week! Don Sickler

  • finally, new music! April 2011

    Una Mas - Kenny Dorham - A Kenny Dorham classic. Lead sheets and second parts from his Blue Note recording (complete with shout chorus). Also, solo piano arrangement by Ronnie Mathews.

    Only You - Kenny Drew - A beautiful ballad that pianist Kenny Drew also recorded later at a medium swing tempo. Check out his original chord voicings.

    A Night In Barcelona - Harold Land - A medium bossa with an interesting recurring bass line figure. Flute/Vibes part (Bobby Hutcherson recorded it) available.

    Fire One - Carl Perkins - Lots of twists and turns in this great question and answer melody by one of the unsung “groove” masters.

    Opus In Turquoise - Gene Roland - A beautiful, simple melody, orchestrated by a master. Kenton band backgrounds in C treble clef version.

  • new jazzleadsheets 2/21/11

    C.F.D. - Jack Wilson An exciting quartet piece (with vibes) that would be great for horns - technical but swinging - by the extremely elegant and meticulous West Coast pianist Jack Wilson. First and second parts.

    Fox Hunt - Bill Barron Recorded fifty years ago this month! Take a minute to explore the complexities and inner strengths of Bill Barron’s composition.

    Hipsippy Blues - Hank Mobley Everyone can enjoy this—swinging with the Jazz Messengers “live” at Birdland, “The Jazz Corner of the World.” Another Hank Mobley classic.

    Mo Is On - Elmo Hope Classic uptempo Elmo Hope. Recorded by Elmo’s trio, in 1953, on their first jazz trio recording together. In 1948 this same trio (Percy Heath on bass and Philly Joe Jones on drums) recorded as the rhythm section for Joe Morris’ R&B group. Challenging, but also great for horn players.

    Why Not? - Johnny Griffin Composer/saxophonist Johnny Griffin’s experiment in sound: 2 basses, tenor sax, French Horn, drums. Why Not? First and second parts. Another 50th Anniversary recording. French Horn players - there’s a part for you!

    I hope you enjoy these. Don Sickler

  • Two new composers: Mal Waldron and Gene Roland

    Mood Malody by Mal Waldron This is the first Mal Waldron composition on jazzleadsheets.com. It was recorded by Mal on piano, on what was Jackie McLean’s first album as a leader, with a young Donald Byrd on trumpet in the front line. As far as we can determine, it’s Mal’s first recorded jazz composition. Melody and second parts available.

    Rat Race Blues by Gigi Gryce This composition definitely brings to mind the tension and discord of modern life in a big city. Although the melody starts out simply, it is eventually played simultaneously by three instruments, each in a different key. Gigi expanded the composition into a larger form for a film project, and it became the soundtrack of a prize-winning film. See details on jazzleadsheets.com.

    Same To You by Johnny Griffin A playful Johnny Griffin title that gives you a good technical workout. It was recorded by an unusual ensemble: tenor sax, drums, and two basses, on Johnny’s “Change Of Pace” album. This album is having its 50th anniversary this month.

    Good Old Soul by Tina Brooks We feel it’s very important that everyone has the opportunity to buy the original track. This arrangement appears twice (with an added alternate take) on the original Blue Note session, but they’re both long tracks. At iTunes, you have to get the whole album. Amazon makes longer takes available, so I’ve now added this arrangement to jazzleadsheets.com along with the other two shorter Tina Brooks compositions that we already have online. “True Blue” is a great album, played by an important cast of jazz artists assisting Tina Brooks: Freddie Hubbard, Duke Jordan, Sam Jones and Art Taylor. Latin bridge, swing solos. Great to play. Second parts available.

    Opus In Chartreuse by Gene Roland We have the honor of publishing quite a few Gene Roland gems. Opus In Chartreuse was an important mainstay of the Stan Kenton band. I was fortunate to have had the opportunity to see this master, Gene Roland, at work, doing what he did best, which was write music. I can’t remember who called me, or exactly when it was, but it had to be sometime in the 1970s. I was living in New York, in the theater district, and I got a call to make a rehearsal band. When I arrived I was introduced to Gene Roland, who handed out a few charts, and we rehearsed. I knew who Gene was, and I knew he was a trumpet player, but at this rehearsal he also played tenor sax. After the rehearsal, we were asked if we could make another rehearsal in a week, and we all agreed to come back. The following week, to my utter amazement, Gene passed out a whole book, 20 or 30 complete arrangements for the band. It wasn’t a full big band, but there were seven or eight horns and rhythm section. Gene had not only written the entire book of arrangements that week, but he’d also written out all the parts himself. I was blown away!

    Enjoy the music. Don Sickler

  • end-of-January music from jazzleadsheets

    Click on the links to get more info and to hear the music.

    Bevan’s Birthday - Tadd Dameron Another Tadd Dameron composition from the famous Magic Touch album - a lilting melody enhanced by Tadd’s complex harmonies that starts Latin and then goes into swing.

    Early Bird - Carl Perkins An easy-going and fun swinger from the talented, unfortunately short-lived composer/pianist Carl Perkins.

    Hank’s Tune - Hank Mobley Recorded by Horace Silver, with Hank on tenor and Donald Byrd on trumpet.

    Splittin’ - Ray Bryant Three different C treble clef lead sheets for a very popular Ray Bryant title: two from trio recordings where Ray was the pianist, and the third from a quintet recording with Hank Jones on piano. Melody and second parts for horns.

    Transition Blues - Hank Mobley Hank Mobley’s tribute to the Transition label finally gets the correct title. Check the Historical Notes to read about it.

    Thanks! Don Sickler

  • 1/21/11 new from jazzleadsheets

    Ronnie Mathews’s medium swing waltz Lament For Love. This composition was recorded as a trio by Ronnie in 1992, but the MP3 versions currently available for download are from two other CDs: Roy Hargrove’s “Family,” and Louis Hayes’ “Blue Lou.” Get Ronnie’s solo piano arrangement, too.

    Ode To An Earth Girl by Bill Barron—a beautiful complex ballad by an important but often overlooked composer and tenor saxophonist. This recording was Bill Barron’s younger brother’s (pianist Kenny Barron) introduction to the recording world.

    So Very Glad, a bossa with hip lyrics and sentiments, by composer/vocalist/lyricist Rachel Gould. A master of vocal phrasing, Rachel’s delivery offers insights into interpretation, with attitude. Vocal transcription also available.

    Have You Noticed? by composer/vocalist/lyricist Meredith d’Ambrosio. A consummate musician, Meredith’s compositions are rich with subtleties and details. In addition to the leadsheet, a transcription of Meredith’s recorded version is also available, as well as an accompaniment-only MP3.

    Something Unusual, music and lyric by Sergio Mihanovich. This gentle, swinging dissection of the early days of a love affair captivates audiences. Mihanovich’s compositions all sound like jazz standards. With accompaniment-only MP3.

    There are so many great compositions - take time to listen to a few new ones. Thanks, Don Sickler

  • New titles January 6, 2011

    For our first composition by tenor saxophonist Johnny Griffin, we’re bringing you Sweet Sucker, which he wrote for himself and trombonist Bennie Green to play on Bennie’s “Glidin’ Along” recording for Jazzland in 1961. Vocalist and lyricist Judy Niemack loved the instrumental, and wrote and recorded a lyric version which we’re also making available (Dancin’ Like We Did Before), as well as an accompaniment-only mp3 of that track. Sweet Sucker - Johnny Griffin Dancin’ Like We Did Before - Johnny Griffin & Judy Niemack

    News For Lulu - Sonny Clark This is from Sonny Clark’s sextet recording “Sonny’s Crib” which featured the front line of Donald Byrd (trumpet), John Coltrane (tenor sax) and Curtis Fuller (trombone). The horns break into harmony in only a few places, so our lead sheet editions show just the melody, except for C treble clef. As usual, all the parts are indicated in the C treble clef lead sheet. If you would like to play this as originally recorded with your own sextet, the original Tenor Sax (2nd part) and Trombone (3rd part) are also available as well as the original detailed Bass part.

    Mox-Nix - Art Farmer [2 Art Farmer solos only] November Afternoon - Tom McIntosh [Art Farmer solo only] We want to present three more wonderful Art Farmer solos. The first solo on Mox-Nix is from a quintet recording, and is the earliest of the three solos. The next Mox-Nix solo and Art’s November Afternoon solo come from two different incarnations of The Jazztet. Most Jazztet arrangements are quite involved, and therefore not suitable to be represented by a lead sheet. They really require a full score and individual parts. Thanks to our new relationship with ejazzlines.com, these two Jazztet arrangements are available there, and we have Art’s solos here, at jazzleadsheets.com.

    The Jazztet arrived on the scene with their first album (“Meet The Jazztet”), recorded in February, 1960. This Art Farmer-Benny Golson sextet also featured Curtis Fuller on trombone, who told me that he actually gave the group its name. The rhythm section also featured a newcomer, pianist McCoy Tyner (on his second recording date). The composer and arranger of November Afternoon was also The Jazztet’s trombonist when “The Jazztet At Birdhouse” (Argo LP 688) was recorded, with Cedar Walton on piano.

    Try to celebrate the New Year with music. Jazz music. Don Sickler

  • 12/29/10 new from jazzleadsheets.com

    Prince Albert - Kenny Dorham A classic melody by Kenny Dorham based on the chord progression of the standard All The Things You Are, plus classic solos (transcribed) by Kenny Dorham and Hank Mobley from the classic Blue Note recording of the then-new quintet ready to explode on the scene in 1955. The Jazz Messengers, with Horace Silver on piano, Doug Watkins on bass, and Art Blakey on drums.

    Reflections In Blue - James Williams Pianist James Williams was part of Blakey’s Jazz Messengers in 1978, (actually he was a Jazz Messenger from 1977 through 1981.) The 1978 Messengers also featured trumpeter Valery Ponomarev, saxophonists Bobby Watson and David Schnitter, and bassist Dennis Irwin. Williams wrote this composition to feature the “patented” Art Blakey shuffle.

    Lite-Flite - Kenny Drew This was recorded with Thad Jones on cornet and Bob Berg on tenor sax, George Mraz on bass, Jimmy Cobb on drums, and, of course, Kenny Drew on piano. Besides an exciting uptempo tune to play, I think of it as a great etude for working on “changes” (see my notes).

    Meant To Be! - Ray Bryant & Fleurine (vocal) The vocal version of Ray Bryant’s Chicken An’ Dumplins, with lyric by Dutch vocalist/lyricist Fleurine. Our version is performed by vocalist Tina May and the composer himself, Ray Bryant, on piano. The only time Ray has ever recorded his own composition—and the complete MP3 recording is available only here.

    De Critifeux - Jack Wilson After giving you the blistering tour de force of Jack Wilson’s Jackleg a few weeks ago, we want to next introduce you to the medium up tempo side of this marvelous piano/composer. Lead sheets plus piano arrangement.

    Happy Holidays! Don Sickler

  • 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

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