Singer's Corner

  • 57 years of music in one week

    The dog days of summer are here. We're marking the start of August with a release that features our classic repertoire and highlights some of our special projects. This week's releases concentrates on important recording anniversaries. Classic recordings like Clifford Brown's Daahoud and Joy Spring (now available in F in addition to the E-flat version added earlier this summer) with details to these classics that are frequently overlooked. We've also added a new vocal selection: Jon Hendricks's lyric to Moanin' by Bobby Timmons. Three more of our composers recorded four years ago this week in what we call our "Duos with Daryl" in a project with the extremely talented young bassist, Daryl Johns, who had just turned 15 years old at the time. We're releasing three pieces, two of which have only been recorded as part of this project, to commemorate the anniversary: Red Sky Waltz (Don Friedman),  Silk (Norman Simmons), and Blues Scam (Richard Wyands). To celebrate their birthdays this week, we are also adding A Laugh For Rory (Rahsaan Roland Kirk) and Smoke Signal (John Webber). This release celebrates music recorded from 1954 to 2011 -- a diverse and exciting selection:

    CLIFFORD BROWN: Daahoud How well do you know Daahoud? Try it exactly how the quintet played it. Two Clifford Brown trumpet solos available.

    CLIFFORD BROWN: Joy Spring Think you know Joy Spring? Think again! New lead sheets in F available. Clifford Brown trumpet solo transcriptions available: master and alt takes from the quintet version (B-flat and C editions); septet version (B-flat and C editions).

    BOBBY TIMMONS & JON HENDRICKS: Moanin' A gospel-inspired lyric on a soul-jazz classic.

    RICHARD WYANDS: Blues Scam Angular hard-bop blues with a bridge. Piano-bass duo score available. This piece has never been recorded before. From the Duos With Daryl series; a jazzleadsheets.com audio exclusive.

    NORMAN SIMMONS: Silk Smooth rhythm changes. Piano-bass duo score available. This piece has also never been recorded before. From the Duos With Daryl series; a jazzleadsheets.com audio exclusive.

    DON FRIEDMAN: Red Sky Waltz Flowing & lovely with changing meter. Piano-bass duo score available. From the Duos With Daryl series; a jazzleadsheets.com audio exclusive.

    RAHSAAN ROLAND KIRK: A Laugh For Rory Simple & modal, in two-part harmony. First and second parts available.

    JOHN WEBBER: Smoke Signal A modern head with many rhythm section hits in the head.

  • Transcriptions, vocals, and much more

    This diverse update has a bit of something for everyone. If you've been waiting for new vocal music, this is your week! We're excited to add new pieces by Sergio Mihanovich and Ruby Braff for voice this week. Instrumentalists can enjoy these pieces as well, of course -- as well as the other six new additions this week. With a solo transcription of Art Farmer, David Hazeltine's own solo piano arrangement, and new original quintet arrangements, these new titles have it all.

    SERGIO MIHANOVICHSometime Ago A wistful classic for singers and instrumentalists. Art Farmer's solo transcription available, as is a vocal lead sheet.

    AL COHNSomething For Lisa Medium swing in a cool jazz style. Chet Baker's quintet arrangement available.

    GIGI GRYCEExhibit A A rhythm changes head with a twist on the bridge. Try Gigi's own arrangement.

    DAVID HAZELTINEAnn's Mood Tonal and beautiful with a cyclical form.

    DAVID HAZELTINEPentimento Charming post-bop bossa. Solo piano arrangement available.

    RUBY BRAFFWe're All Through A sultry medium swing with a lyric describing a relationship's end. Vocal lead sheet available.

    ERIC ALEXANDERLittle Lucas A modal composition with great flexibility.

    IDREES SULIEMANTell Me What's Your Name  A thoughtful, tender ballad.

  • Three new composers. One big update.

    We're back with another big update! This week, we're welcoming three new composers to the site: tenor saxophonist Paul Quinichette, cornetist Ruby Braff and bassist Santi Debriano. Our Recording Session Anniversaries this week celebrates the anniversary of the first recording of Gigi Gryce's Capri with new lead sheets in the original key -- including two Clifford Brown trumpet solos; the recording sessions for Kenny Drew Jr.'s album "A Look Inside" (Alhambra, A Look Inside); Ray Bryant's legendary performance at Montreaux; and Ruby Braff's recording session for his album "Braff!" on which Here's Freddie was recorded.

    We're also celebrating birthdays: vocalist Rachel Gould, pianist Elmo Hope and bassist Santi Debriano. Join us in marking all of these anniversaries and birthdays with great music!

    Check out this week's new music:

    GIGI GRYCECapri  Now available in the original key with two Clifford Brown trumpet solos

    KENNY DREW JRAlhambra A lyrical, flowing bossa

    KENNY DREW JR: A Look Inside A cheerful & bubbly medium swing

    RAY BRYANT: Blues #3 Master the blues in G with this three-chorus piano solo transcription

    RAY BRYANT: Blues #2 A blues tour-de-force: seven choruses of piano solo transcription

    PAUL QUINICHETTE: Prevue A simply & catchy medium swing that makes a great choice for vocalists. Paul Quinichette's tenor sax solo transcription available.

    RUBY BRAFF: Here's Freddie Classic, laid-back mainstream jazz

    SANTI DEBRIANO: Abra Cadabra A bright Latin piece

    Have you seen our new inline audio player? It's a simple blue box that appears in our text notes whenever we want to feature a sample in the middle of text. If you come across a blue box with a triangle on it like this , click it and listen to the music!

    Make sure to click on the dots under the home page slider; we've put some fun ways to look at this week's music there. 
    Enjoy the music!
  • Be jolly: Deck your music stands with new lead sheets.

    'Tis the season of giving, so we're keeping these holidays merry and bright with a new collection of lead sheets.

    HANK MOBLEYNight Watch That’s right — we’ve got more of this classic composer and we can’t wait to share it! Hank Mobley’s winning melodic style — singable, simple lines — is on display here in this Latin/swing hybrid.

    NORMAN SIMMONSSlumberettes Don’t sleep on this jazzy lullaby. This sweet, lilting waltz by composer/pianist Norman Simmons is sensitive and graceful. Pianists, be sure to check out our solo piano arrangements: one by Norman himself and an easy piano arrangement by Don Sickler. Both were recorded exclusively for jazzleadsheets.com by maestro Kenny Drew, Jr. Concert condensed score and second parts available.

    BILL BARRONMinor Mode Don’t confuse this piece with the Booker Little composition of the same name! This energetic medium swing makes a great introduction to the underrated (but always impressive) hard bop composer Bill Barron. Second and third parts available.

    JON BURRRainbow Over Harlem Jon Burr’s charming medium swing has a memorable and dreamy melody — and it’s available in editions both for instrumentalists and singers! Vocalists will love stretching their ears with this piece that we’ve made available in both female- and male-friendly keys. And everyone will enjoy the laid-back feel that supports the alluring melody.

    ROB BARGADTears A sultry, slow Latin piece that mixes a modern jazz melody with a smoldering cha-cha/bolero groove. Rob Bargad flaunts his compositional prowess on this chart. If you’re not hip to this current composer yet, now’s the time to start!

    Share the joy with us at jazzleadsheets.com!

  • April showers bring new composers

    It’s a new month, a new batch of lead sheets, and most exciting of all, two new composers added to our roster!

    We’re very excited to be welcoming GEOFFREY KEEZER and VALERY PONOMAREV to the jazzleadsheets.com family. These two virtuosos represent all that is great about the jazz scene today — not only are they two of the most talented musicians on their respective instruments, but their compositions are out of this world. We’re starting off with one piece from each of their first solo releases.

    Geoffrey Keezer’s first album as a leader was recorded when he was only 17 — a fact that is all the more incredible when you hear his complex, edgy, irresistible composition Babes In McCoyland. With elements of Latin, rock, and gospel all mixed together, this piece is nothing short of addictive.

    Valery Ponomarev’s first solo release came a bit later in life, but his composition Take Care is equally impressive. It fits in perfectly with many of our hard-bop compositions even though it was recorded years later — that’s how much soul and style Valery has as both a composer and a player.

    But the new releases from our other composers are just as enticing. If it’s a ballad you need, look no further than Myles. This sensitive, haunting composition by Billy Pierce is simply breath-taking. If it happens to make you tear up a bit on the first listen, you’re in good company.

    It’s been a while since we’ve treated you with a composition from maestro Al Cohn, and there’s no better piece to come back with than Danielle . This versatile composition (recorded as a bossa, slow swing, or ballad) has a plaintive, nostalgic quality to it and a melody so lovely you’ll be humming it for days.

    And singers: we’ve got a great pick for you, too! Over The Brink comes from Judy Niemack’s fantastic tutorial book, Hear It And Sing It: Exploring The Blues, but it’s a great chart in its own right. The instrumental composition, Push Come To Shove, is by Julian Priester, and Julian and Judy make quite a team. Over The Brink is a sultry, unusual, exciting blues (complete with a minus you audio track) that will push your ear and really work your chops.

  • It's cold out there -- stay in and practice!

    Hello again, jazz fans! It’s been colder than ever at our New York office, but that’s not slowing us down — in fact, we’re back with another update this week.

    Our [minus-you] tracks for Brian Lynch’s Unsung Heroes project were such a hit that we thought we’d release some more! Musicians of any instrument can play along with a professional ensemble on our [minus you] series, with custom tracks for each instrument. This week, we’re releasing The Plain But The Simple Truth, a quirky and catchy Lucky Thompson blues. If you’re looking to kick back with a great recording, be sure to also check out our exclusive audio track of rising bass star Daryl Johns, recorded specially for jazzleadsheets.com.

    This week, we’re celebrating the collaboration between Blue Note and legendary trumpeter Kenny Dorham with two K.D. releases: Philly Twist and K.D.’s Motion. Philly Twist, from the “Whistle Stop” album and written for Philly Joe Jones, is distinctive for the strong rhythmic drive in the head that’s propelled by the syncopated rhythm section hits. K.D.’s Motion, from the “Afro-Cuban” album, is a more laid-back take on the blues, but like Philly Twist, it shows what a genius Dorham was at writing unusual, intriguing rhythms for his melodies.

    If you’re looking for a pick-me-up to your winter blues, try Rahsaan Roland Kirk’s My Delight. As the title suggests, this medium-up swing is sweet, happy, and thoroughly appealing. A contrasting Latin groove in the B section adds some intrigue to the head, making it an all-around winner.

    Vocalists, check out Baby, I’m Coming Home, a charming blues with music and lyric by guitar master Chuck Wayne. If you’re looking for a piece with a classic sound but are sick of overdone standards, you’ll love this chart!

    Finally, we have another transcription for our drummersBilly Drummond on A Peck A Sec from trumpeter Jim Rotondi’s recording of the Hank Mobley classic. This chart shows Billy’s mastery of the straight-ahead tradition and his fantastic soloing as evidenced on the trading section. On this recording, Billy really locked in with bassist Dwayne Burno, who very tragically passed away in December. Listening to this recording again reminded us how talented and special Dwayne was. He is sorely missed by the jazz community.

  • Lots of news for the new year!

    Have you noticed all the latest developments on jazzleadsheets.com? 2014 has barely begun, but it’s already proving to be a huge year for us! If you haven’t been on our site in a while, check it out — you’ll see some new categories, with even more exciting changes to come as the year goes on.

    At the beginning of this month, we celebrated the 75th anniversary of Blue Note Records’ first session with the releases of Melancholy and Solitude, both from that historic January 6, 1939 date. But our celebration of the long partnership between our composers and Blue Note Records is far from complete! We’re introducing our Blue Note collection. Now you can easily find all of the compositions that have been featured on Blue Note releases throughout the years. But even more good news — we’ll be adding to this collection every month to celebrate more anniversaries throughout the year!

    This release, we have several anniversaries to celebrate, which means of course another set of top quality lead sheets. January 19th saw the 46th anniversary of a great Hank Mobley session that culminated with the release of “Reach Out!” In honor of Hank (and all of his fans at jazzleadsheets.com), we’re commemorating this anniversary with Lookin’ East, a laid-back medium groove piece with a bit of Latin flavor. Second parts available.

    The next day, January 20th, marked the 52nd anniversary of a lesser-known release: saxophonist Ike Quebec’s “Easy Living,” featuring Congo Lament by Bennie Green. This composition also has a Latin influence — maybe a touch more than Lookin’ East — and features a nice bluesy lick for the melody. Second parts available.

    Just a few days later we celebrated the 64th anniversary of the recording of Kenny Drew’s Fuguetta (Jan. 23rd, 1950). Originally recorded by trumpeter Howard McGhee, Fuguetta is an unexpected combination of Baroque and bebop, which go together surprisingly well. Try it for yourself and see!

    With all that celebrating, we thought we’d add a couple of ballads to cool us off. First, we’re introducing J.J. Johnson to the jazzleadsheets.com family with his classic ballad Enigma. Many musicians are familiar with the way Miles Davis recorded it, but only at jazzleadsheets.com can you find the original leadsheet, drawn from J.J.’s own manuscript and notated the way he first heard it. We’re very excited to offer this exclusive look inside such a tender, lyrical ballad.

    Finally, a treat for vocalists and their accompanists: Rob Bargad’s Another World. This sensitive, dreamy 20-bar ballad comes complete with an accompaniment-only track so singers can practice along with a professional ensemble to back them up. After you hear Dena DeRose’s plaintive rendition of it, we’re sure you’ll want to try it yourself.

  • Introducing MINUS YOU: a brand new way to practice

    It’s been busy here in our New York office — on Monday, January 6, we celebrated Blue Note’s 75th anniversary with two Meade Lux Lewis piano transcriptions (Melancholy / Solitude) which comprised BN-1, the actual first Blue Note release. On Wednesday, January 8, we celebrated the anniversary of the recording of Kenny Burrell’s classic Blue Note album Midnight Blue. Today we’re back with another round of great charts — and a new collaboration with a new series of audio editions!

    In addition to making leadsheets and arrangements available, jazzleadsheets.com is starting a new series of instrumental audio play-a-long editions for every member of the recorded ensemble. We call it our [minus you] editions. We've long offered practice tracks of our Singer's Corner compositions so vocalists could sing with a professional ensemble, but with our [minus you] series, we're taking it to the next level. We're now offering tracks of the highest caliber musicians with options for each part removed -- so you can practice with professionals.

    I’m starting this new series with the help on one of my old friends, fellow trumpet player, Brian Lynch. We’ve always had the  common quest to pay tribute to very important trumpet player/composers who haven’t received their due. Several years ago Brian came up with his “Unsung Heroes Project” recording concept and came to us to get some music by three of their mutual heroes: Idrees Sulieman, Tommy Turrentine and Joe Gordon.

    We’re starting this marriage of jazzleadsheets.com and Brian’s Hollistic Music with one composition each by these important trumpet/composer giants: Big Red (Tommy Turrentine) Terra Firma Irma (Joe Gordon) Orange Blossoms (Idrees Sulieman)

    Big Red was recorded as a quintet by Brian. Terra Firma Irma was as a sextet by Brian, and also originally recorded by Joe Gordon as a quintet. Orange Blossoms was recorded by Brian in a quartet context. Judy Niemack also wrote a lyric to this beautiful ballad, which required a new title for the lyric version: With You.

    The written music is available in separate editions: go to each song page for a list of what is available.

    Transcribed trumpet solos are also available for Terra Firma Irma (for Brian and Joe) and Big Red (Brian only). Specific [minus you] editions are also available: you can substitute yourself for any instrument in the ensemble!

    "Front line" is the term used to signify the melody player along with anyone else in "the front line" playing harmony parts, as in a quintet or sextet. Our [minus you] editions for front line players feature them as the only soloists; they play in the ensemble for the melodies.

    Solos for front line players: On the original recordings there are often various soloists. On our [minus you] front line editions, you are the only soloist. Rhythm section players play with the whole original recorded track.

  • end-of-2013 additions from jazzleadsheets.com

    Here are our last additions to jazzleadsheets for 2013. We’re looking forward to adding many more, plus new features, in 2014. We can't wait to see you then! And we wish you a Happy New Year.

    Freddie Redd’s sunny Latin So, Samba! celebrates its 25th recording anniversary. It’s a lot of fun with one melody instrument, and it was first recorded as a quintet arrangement so second parts are also available.

    The beautiful ballad Dark Beauty by Kenny Drew, trio & quintet versions with second parts, plus Drew’s piano arrangement from his original manuscript.

    Arioso, James Williams’ soaring melody, plus his solo piano arrangement recorded by Kenny Drew, Jr.

    J.R. Monterose’s lilting Waltz For Claire, a quartet version.

    New composer Grachan Moncur III debuts with Riff Raff, from Jackie McLean’s “Destination … Out!” Blue Note album, plus Grachan’s trombone solo.

    A memorable & delightful vocal, All Because Of You, from new composer/pianist/organist/vocalist Rob Bargad.

  • The holidays are here at jazzleadsheets.com

    The holidays are just around the corner, and it’s been getting snowy here in New York. We’re celebrating the season through great charts — check them out and join in our holiday revelry!

    Kicking off our new additions is a swing/Latin hybrid by Elmo Hope - Abdullah. The minor melody is tuneful and memorable — it might just get stuck in your head. Since Elmo originally recorded this composition with his quintet, we have the original parts available to try out with your own quintet (alternate parts are also available). If you want to play it solo or try out your own arrangement, we offer a regular leadsheet as well. Either way, it’s a strong addition to any set.

    On the slower side of Latin is Los Milagros Pequenos, a mysterious and alluring piece by Norman Simmons. The melody of this chart is slow and meditative; it floats over a repeating bass line that anchors the piece. Norman originally recorded this chart with his quintet, but also wrote a solo piano arrangement for it. The piano arrangement is a great choice for intermediate pianists looking to brush up on their Latin skills — it’s not simplified at all, but isn’t too tricky either. To go along with the piano arrangement, we have an exclusive audio track featuring Kenny Drew Jr. It’s a great example of how to play this beautiful composition.

    If you’re looking for something with a bit more pep, look no further than Ray Bryant’s Bebop Irishman. This chart is as whimsical and fun as the name suggests — it has a jig-like pace with long bebop lines set over a simple folk-like chord progression. This is a good pick to feature the piano, since the long chromatic lines showcase pianistic dexterity. This is not to say that this piece is only for pianists. On a Buddy Rich recording, both flute and vibes are added to the melody, and George Shearing added guitar as well as vibes to the melody. We also have horn editions as well. For drummers, though, we have Evan Hughes’s transcription of Jo Jones’ playing. The transcription includes the drum introduction, time over the in head, trading fours with the piano, and the out chorus. The brushwork on this piece is so incredible that many drummers regard this recording as a sort of bible for brush playing. Now you don’t have to guess what Jo Jones was playing — you can try it all out yourself with this meticulously detailed transcription!

    For singers, we’re releasing the vocal version of the Gigi Gryce jazz standard Social Call. Jon Hendricks’s clever lyric is the perfect foil for the unforgettable melody, making the vocal version a popular choice for decades of singers. Try this chart out for yourself and join the ranks of Ernestine Anderson, Betty Carter, Earl Coleman, Karrin Allyson, Diane Reeves and Cecile McLorin Salvant — all of whom have recorded this classic composition.

    Finally, we have an exotic 7/4 blues from Julian Priester and Judy Niemack. Eros, Judy’s lyric version to Julian’s instrumental Blues for Eros, is a sexy musical retelling of the Greek myth of Eros and Psyche.  Eros, the son of the goddess Aphrodite, seduced Psyche until she figured out his godly identity. He abandoned her, forcing Psyche to seek counsel from Aphrodite, who sent her on a difficult quest to win back her love. Judy draws out the theme of blind passion so strong it verges on desperation; this theme is amplified by the seductive melody by Julian and the driving odd-meter pulse of the bass.

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