Ronnie Mathews

  • Joy Spring, new composers and more hits

    Many people have enjoyed the solo transcriptions of Clifford Brown on his classic composition "Joy Spring," but we've often been asked where the lead sheets are. Until now, you've only been able to purchase the arrangement through Second Floor Music's sheet music affiliates, but we've now made individual lead sheets available for everyone in the original key in honor of the 61st anniversary of the septet recording. On top of that, we're adding two new composers this week: tenor saxophonist Ernie Wilkins and pianist Eddie Higgins. With additions to the Piano Corner, Bass Corner, and new quintet arrangements, this update may just raise the temperature a little more on this hot July week.

    CLIFFORD BROWNJoy Spring

    The classic bop standard -- now available in the original key, plus Clifford Brown's trumpet solo from the septet recording.

    J.J. JOHNSONNWPT

    Rhythm changes with a twist. Original quintet arrangement available.

    DON PATTERSON & SONNY STITTAries

    A laid-back, swinging ballad in two keys.

    GRACHAN MONCUR: Thandiwa

    A quirky waltz with first and second parts available.

    ERNIE WILKINSFar Out East

    This bop melody has a serious swing.

    EDDIE HIGGINS: Shinjuku Twilight

    Charming and sweet with Japanese flair.

    RONNIE MATHEWSJohn Charles

    A post-bop blues that features the bass.

    RONNIE MATHEWSSalima's Dance

    Blues-like, with an even-8ths 3/4 groove. Solo Piano Arrangement available.

    RAHSAAN ROLAND KIRKFunk Underneath

    A simple laid-back riff blues.

    Plus, celebrate Hank Mobley's birthday (this past Tuesday, July 7) by checking out our extensive catalog of Hank Mobley lead sheets.

  • jazzleadsheets in early October

    It’s a big update from us this week — eight new charts with exciting options for singers and instrumentalists alike! With so much to choose from, there’s no way you won’t be able to find something that catches your interest.

    We have three new compositions by former Jazz Messengers, starring with composer/pianist Donald Brown’s stunning ballad Dorothy, dedicated to his wife. Not only is it a romantic, complex ballad in and of itself, but we also offer transcriptions of Donald’s comping behind the melody and his solo for pianists who want to learn more about his signature style. Studying Donald’s artistic harmonic voicings in his comping and the way he gives meaning and purpose to each note in his solo is a great exercise for pianists to improve their own skills.

    We’re introducing another new composer, saxophonist Bill Pierce, with his Chuck’s Groove. Like many of Bill’s compositions, this piece features a memorable, tuneful melody and sets it over an unusual chord progression. It’s a great choice for musicians of any instrument or skill level!

    We were so excited about Hank Mobley’s The Turnaround (quintet parts) that we had to make it available for both musicians and singers. It’s a funky, bluesy and fun piece that is easy to master for beginners but really soars when played by masters like Hank and Freddie Hubbard (who are featured on the instrumental recording). Chris Caswell’s playful lyric version, I Found The Turnaround, is expertly recorded by Karrin Allyson. Take a listen and try it out yourself with our vocal lead sheet; the small range of the melody makes it perfect for most voice types.

    Take a trip to South America with Jon Burr’s Sea Breeze. This laid-back, soothing bossa nova features a lyric by the composer himself that reflects the simple joy of relaxing by the sea. We offer this lead sheet in two keys — one for altos and one for sopranos. Full track and accompaniment-only audio available.

    Rachel Gould’s No More Fire (Over You) is another bossa nova with a bit more of an edge. The lyric describes getting over a lover and finally being able to move on. In addition to the vocal lead sheet, we also offer a transcription of Rachel’s recording so singers can learn from her expert phrasing.

    Singers looking to add more waltzes to their repertoire should look no further than Like A Butterfly, Judy Niemack’s lyric version to Ronnie Mathews’s Jean-Marie. This delicate, breezy waltz is a good choice for sopranos since it features the upper register of a vocalist’s range. Full track and accompaniment-only audio available.

    Rounding out our vocal selections is Swinging My Life Away, a vocal version of Ray Bryant’s Tonk with a lyric by Tina May. It’s a fun, upbeat song that celebrates jazz, swing, and being yourself — a message we couldn’t agree with more! Full track and accompaniment-only audio available.

    A tip: if you’re printing from Adobe Acrobat, make sure you specify “none” for print scaling in the dialog. We’ve already made sure the margins are correct. If you let Acrobat print automatically, it might reduce the music a bit.

  • Birthday and anniversary megapost: 10 new products!

    This week (more precisely May 20 through May 24) has important anniversaries we want to honor so we’ve expanded our usual five new entries this week to cover ten celebrations.

    May 20 is the birthday of drummer/composer Victor Lewis (born in 1950 in Omaha, Nebraska). In honor of Victor’s birthday, here’s his great composition Seventh Avenue . For the drummers among you, in our Drum Corner, you can take a special look at some 7/4 “groove” patterns that Victor used on two different recordings.

    When we showed Victor what recordings of jazzleadsheets.com music took place on his birthday over the years, he was blown away. What great birthday presents master drummers gave him, unknowingly, by recording their music on his birthday. Were they omens or just subliminal influences, for a young man who has certainly become one of the great modern drummers?

    Here are Victor’s “birthday presents” that we want to share with you.

    Ittapnna by drummer Walter Bolden, a new composer to jazzleadsheets: on Victor’s third birthday: May 20, 1953, Walter recorded this on “Howard McGhee, Vol. 2” (Blue Note).

    On Victor’s fourth birthday, drummer Art Blakey recorded his Mercury album “Blakey,” (May 20, 1954) featuring these three Gigi Gryce compositions: Minority and Salute To Birdland by Gigi Gryce. The lead sheets have been available for some time but now you can explore Gigi Gryce (alto sax) and Joe Gordon (trumpet) solos for both titles. Plus a new title from that session, Hello, a beautiful ballad.

    For Victor’s tenth birthday, May 20, 1960, drummer Philly Joe Jones recorded his album “Philly Joe’s Beat” (Atlantic). Lead sheets for Joe’s Got To Take Another Chance have been available, but now you can check out Philly Joe’s drum transcription.

    Another drum master, Louis Hayes, recorded his album “The Real Thing,” on Victor’s 27th birthday, May 20, 1977. This session included Ronnie Mathews’ tour-de-force composition Loose Suite (lead sheet editions plus Ronnie’s solo piano arrangement edition).

    I couldn’t stop there, because on May 21, Cleo’s Blues (written and performed by tenor giant Paul Gonsalves) celebrates its 50th recording anniversary.

    And on May 22 bassist/composer Jon Burr celebrates a big one, his 60th birthday, joining jazzleadsheets.com. He has a perfect composition for our upcoming Bass Corner: Smokin’ O.P.’s.

    And finally, also on May 22 (or maybe it was May 24, the recording info on the liner notes doesn’t specify) pianist James Williams recorded his composition Mr. Day’s Dream (lead sheet editions and James’ Solo Piano Arrangement plus recording by Kenny Drew, Jr.).

    Celebrate! Don Sickler www.jazzleadsheets.com and www.SecondFloorMusic.com phone 212-741-1175 email don@secondfloormusic.com

  • 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

  • 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

  • Jazzleadsheets is back! March 3, 2010

    Thanks for being patient with our absence from the scene. Unfortunately, due to problems beyond our control, we had to shut down during the last month to solve some technical problems. Now we’re back on the web bigger (by 5 new titles) and better! We have new additions this week and we’re preparing to add several more important compositions next week.

    The Waiting Game (Tina Brooks): Tina Brooks was a gifted artist and composer (check out our audio excerpt). It’s a shame that we lost him at an early age. One of his older brothers, David “Bubba” Brooks, survived much longer and went on to be quite a well-known swing and R&B tenor sax player. The rhythm section for this arrangement is too involved to make clear in a lead sheet, so we’ve made individual parts and a full score available (a full quintet arrangement—as recorded, trumpet and tenor front line). This is the second of our “as recorded” combos available, and there are many more complete arrangements like this in preparation, to be posted soon. The other arrangement currently available is Gerkin For Perkin by Clifford Brown.

    High Modes (Hank Mobley): Definitely one of the “groove” masters, the Messengers (with Wayne Shorter) recorded this minor key gem live at Birdland.

    Vaun-Ex (Elmo Hope): Elmo moved to LA in 1957 and hooked up with some great West Coast musicians for this date, including Harold Land and Frank Butler, both of whom went on to record some of Elmo’s landmark challenging compositions (coming soon, only on jazzleadsheets.com). Since this was recorded as a quintet, second parts are also available.

    Jean-Marie (Ronnie Mathews): In addition to the lead sheets (and quintet second parts) for this great Mathews’ composition, we’re offering Ronnie’s own Solo Piano arrangement, perfect for launching our Solo Piano editions. As well as being a superb recital feature for solo piano, it’s actually what Ronnie played during performance, regardless of the size of the ensemble. Jean-Marie was Ronnie’s wife and the mother of Ronnie’s pride and joy, his daugher Salima.

    Serial Blues (Kenny Drew, Jr.): Another interesting and challenging composition from the pen of this great second generation pianist and composer. An opportunity to widen your knowledge and your “tone row” experience. Look for some of his father’s compositions coming soon.

    Thank you for playing this music. --Don & Maureen Sickler

  • Two new composers this week

    Pianist Kenny Drew, Jr., an inventive virtuoso with a modern sound and style, joins the site with Third Phase, and trumpeter Bill Hardman, one of Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers in the 1950s and ’60s, offers a groovy Latin piece, Jo-B.

    Two more great Ronnie Mathews titles from his Doin’ The Thang recording, Orient and Let's Get Down.

    Another addition in our two versions series (like Filide last week): Capers, a Tom McIntosh composition with two versions, recorded by two different trumpet players in the same year. Bill Hardman with Sonny Red on alto sax recorded it first, then Blue Mitchell with Junior Cook on tenor.

  • Wednesday, November 11, 2009

    New this week: This week we start something new. Two different arrangements of the same composition. Scroll down to see “Description” and “Historical Notes” for each recording as well as to hear a sample of each.

    Ray Draper - Filide Two different Ray Draper arrangements. One is a quintet recording with John Coltrane. The second is a piano-less Max Roach quintet recording (3 horns). Comparing them makes for a very interesting study: how the melody is phrased differently, how the solo sections differ, the different intro and endings, etc.

    Roland Alexander - Pleasure Bent The Junior Cook recording is available as a single download, but the Roland Alexander recording is only available as an “album” download. There are four great Ronnie Mathews compositions also available on that album download (from iTunes or Concord Music Group), so we’re adding them to jazzleadsheets.com over the next two weeks. Get the whole album at Concord Music Group: Purchase CD

    Ronnie Mathews - two compositions: Ichi-Ban and The Thang An original, a great performer and interpreter, and two of his challenging and fun compositions. More coming in the next few weeks.

    Gene Ammons - Tastin’ The Jug The first title played at the session, after a recording gap of 7 years, a great blues head.

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