Thursday, September 29, 2005

Thanks to Jeffrey at Straight No Chaser and to Taxi Driver at Xanax Taxi for deigning to recognize my humble efforts. Pretty much the first response I've gotten except from a couple of creepy web spider thingies, and both of these blogs are full of very good stuff.

Here is a summary of my MP3 postings to date. Some are no longer online, but let me know if you want a copy and we'll work it out.
    Previous Posts
  • Marvin Gaye - Star Spangled Banner
  • Jimmy Wilkins Orchestra - Upper Manhattan Medical Group
  • Sarah Vaughan - If You Could See Me Now
  • Joe Farrell - Follow Your Heart
  • Miles Davis - Out of the Blue
  • Sam Jones - Thumbstring
  • Thelonious Monk - Jackie-ing
  • Duke Ellington - Satin Doll
  • Dizzy Gillespie - My Heart Belongs to Daddy
  • Count Basie - My Heart Belongs to Daddy
  • Isley Brothers - Harvest for the World
  • Les McCann - Kathleen's Theme

Here's Henry Mancini's Fallout, which I ripped from a rather chewed copy of the LP "Music from Peter Gunn" (RCA Victor LSP-1956). Encore Recordings didn't have another copy. There was a skip around measure 17 in the introductory flute solo, so I patched in the drums and bass from about measure 5 so I could practice along with it.

The bassist is Roland "Rolly" Bundock, a veteran who performed at Carnegie Hall with Glenn Miller in 1939. He also recorded with Mel Torme and Dave Pell, and with Mancini, on electric bass, as recently as 1973, according to AllMusic.Com . According to a Glenn Miller website he passed away in 1998.

Here is the original bass part, page 1, andpage 2. Here is my page 2 edit of the bass part to show the closing as recorded with walking bass and drums fading out instead of the Molto Ritard and held chord in the written part. Note also that the written part designates a bass solo in letter H, which is more trombone solo in the recording. I have trouble getting the trombonist to butt out during this part when we perform it. I haven't looked at his part yet.

With the chromatic bass line, the changes of key, and the rather brisk misterioso tempo of 170 bpm, this is a classic study for string bassists! Take it to the woodshed!!

Friday, September 23, 2005

Eddie Harris and Les McCann's "Swiss Movement" is one of the great live jazz albums. The style is very accessible and funky and the mood is very spontaneous. Benny Bailey sat in on trumpet and you can hear what sounds like somebody explaining how the song goes at one point. Les McCann's Kathleen's Theme sounds deceptively simple, to me, after I started trying to write it out. Here is my working leadsheet, pending Tom Loncaric's setting me straight. Suggestions are welcome.

The bassist is Leroy Vinnegar. Leroy was born in Indianapolis in 1928 and died in 1999. ALLMUSIC.COM says he first recorded in 1942 with Paul Whiteman. In the early 50s he played with Chet Baker, Stan Getz and Shelly Manne, in the 60s with Les McCann. He even recorded with the Doors. Leroy Vinnegar was a quintessential West Coast bassist.

Come see the II-V-I Orchestra Sunday, September 25, from 6:30 to 9 at the Creekside Grille, 5 miles west of Ann Arbor at the Zeeb Road I-94 exit. This month we'll be getting out a bunch of Count Basie charts and going at it!

Monday, September 19, 2005

A good tune I didn't know when it came out in 1976 was the Isley Brother's Harvest for the World. This is a lot better tune than "We are the World" ever was and almost as good as "What's Goin' On". It's a jazzy, soulful peace'n'love kind of thing with nice chords. We performed it at our summer camp talent show this Labor Day weekend and 2 ladies jumped up out of the crowd, started singing and clapping, and got all the little kids up dancing and banging on percussion. It was big fun.

*** The MP3 is my edit... the quiet part of the prelude is shortened by about a minute and the main tune is tacked right onto the prelude. The PDF file is my approximation of the chords and form. I couldn't get it to lie very well on the ukelele.

Sunday September 25, 2005: ii-V-I Orchestra at the Creekside Grille, 6:30 to 9 pm.

WATCH THIS SPACE because my other band, Surry Scheerer and the Dean Solden Quartet, will be appearing in late October at Goodnite Gracie's in Ann Arbor.