Sonny's Tune – Sonny Stitt
A fun laid-back riff blues with a melodic bass part.
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- Recording: Sonny Stitt - New York Jazz
- Recorded on: September 14, 1956
- Label: Verve (MGV 8219)
- Concert Key: C
- Vocal Range: , to
- Style: Swing (medium)
- Alto and Tenor Sax - Sonny Stitt
- Piano - Jimmy Jones
- Bass - Ray Brown
- Drums - Jo Jones
Check out another title recorded on Stitt's "New York Jazz," Norman's Blues
Sonny's Tune is a great example of a contrapuntal two-voice melody that's divided between the top and bottom voices. Stitt wrote a melody and specifically added a written bass part that fills it out. This gives the bass player a nice chance to be a part of the statement of the theme while simultaneously providing the bass function of the band.
Bassists infrequently are given the chance to play the melody, and when those times come up they're often the only lead instrument, but Sonny's Tune provides the unique opportunity for the bassist to have their own counter melody line and be able to phrase it alongside the higher melody part. While this part does require the bassist to play some melodic eighth note lines in time, they are positioned conveniently on the instrument, requiring minimal shifts as well as utilizing a plethora of open strings.
Bassist should get the C treble clef (plus Bass) lead sheet.
February 2, 1924 – July 22, 1982
Alto saxophonist Sonny Stitt was 3 1/2 years younger than Charlie Parker. When they met in 1943, each was surprised to find the other had developed a virtually identical style. Sonny was always frustrated when he was labeled as just another disciple of Charlie Parker, knowing he had already developed his style before hearing recordings of Charlie Parker with Jay McShann. Read more...