January 7 Rehearsal Note

Hello JJB Musicians,

In this note:

1. Welcome back note, concert date

2. Goals for the session

3. Listening Links (the solos and some parts (especially drums) are not always exactly as written, but it is critical to listen weekly)

4. Important Dates:   Clinics, Concerts

1. It was GREAT to see everyone after the holidays, and get back to our instruments and making music together.  A special welcome to our new members!  I am looking forward to the music we will work on together this session.  We will learn 4-5 new pieces, and enjoy some previously learned pieces.  (Don’t worry if you are new – just play what you can, and practice a favourite or two from the fall session.)  We will select 3 – 4 of the new pieces to focus on and play at the April 14 afternoon concert.  Although we work towards playing our best, we are understanding and supportive of each other!   Life is busy, arthritis acts up, or a sick dog keeps you up all night, but never skip a practice because you feel you are behind, because your best is good enough!!

2. Some of our goals for this term:

Improvise:  This is a skill that evolves over several years.  Studying music theory and harmony is a good foundation, and there are good theory courses online and in book form.  We will touch on some basics of chord progressions and writing your own 8 bar solo.  (See band note November 5 for more about chords). We will use exercises and strategies to build skills and develop confidence in “making it up on the spot”.  When performing, most musicians do have a set of “rifts” or patterns that are well-rehearsed to use as they improvise.  When starting out in jazz, it is very helpful to use a written solo, or write out your own solo.

Improve technical playing:  Musicianship improves with long tone warm ups, technical exercises for your instrument  in method books –scales, arpeggios, slurs, stacattos, crescendos, etc. (Rubanks is a great resource for the serious musician), practicing select measures slowly with the metronome, then gradually moving up the tempo, and practicing along with a recording or with friends to learn to keep your place and play what you can.

Listen to jazz! Critically important, and fun!  Please listen to 102.5 on your way to rehearsal to get in the groove!  I am also circulating a CD  “Urban Flower” which is by the local 9 piece band Alternate Takes.

Learn/review various scales beginning on   concert Bb, Eb and F, and sight-read some easier pieces from our method book which are great for developing skills in improvisation.

Get to know each other, and arrange to meet up in small groups to rehearse parts, have coffee, and try out some duet, trio and quartet music.

Most importantly:  HAVE FUN playing great music!!!

3. Pieces and Listening Links:


Feeling Good (from The Roar of the Greasepaint -The Smell of the Crowd  ) L. Bricusse, A. Newley, arr. Stitzel  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gTduOkOpC4M

Mixed Bag       V. Lopez     https://www.jwpepper.com/sheet-music/media-player.jsp?&type=audio&productID=2701905

All My LovingJ. Lennon, P. McCartney, arr. Stitzel  (see the band leader score as you listen!)

(easy piano – see the chords played)

All My Lovin’  (watch this piano performance and notice the repeated chords (minor chords are in lower case, and MAJOR CHORDS are in upper case)

Piano version (rhythms different in our version) d – G – C – a – F – d – Bb – G – d – G – C – a – F – G -C

Our jazz version (swing eighths)                              c – F – Bb – g – Eb- c – Ab – F-  c – F – Bb- g – Eb- F -Bb

(Notice that we are playing a whole tone lower than C Major, in Bb Major.  However, no matter the scale, the chord progression is the same:   ii – V – I – vi – IV – ii – I – V – ii – V – I – vi – IV – V – I )

Reminder – Chords are indicated in Roman numerals. Each chord is built on the degree of the scale of its name, so the ii chord (two chord) is built on the second note of the scale, the note next to the home tone, and is a minor chord.

Piano chords demonstrated –       https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kJ3rzF3pC8


Round Midnight  (Cootie Williams and Thelonius Monk  arr Smukal) *tenor sax solo



It Don’t Mean a Thing (If it Ain’t Got that Swing)  https://www.halleonard.com/viewaudio.action?itemId=7470508&fileName=https://s3.amazonaws.com/halleonard-audio/07470508.mp3


So What (Miles Davis arr Sweeney) https://www.jwpepper.com/sheet-music/media-player.jsp?&type=audio&productID=2470822

Ain’t Misbehavin’  (Thomas “Fats” Waller arr Ford) (piano solo)


Moondance (Van Morrison arr Lopez) https://www.jwpepper.com/sheet-music/media-player.jsp?&type=audio&productID=2701897

Stay Cool (Vince Gassi)


Into the Sun (Sorenson) last piece (Latin – reggae) – Standards of Excellence for Jazz (Pearson and Sorenson)  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9nue-pMTg20


4. https://ottawanewhorizons.com/calendar/

Clinics:  January 28, February 11, and Neil Yorke-Slader on March

Concert :  Sunday, April 14  (afternoon)

Possibly community concert?  Monday, April 1   (any suggestions? – senior’s home, daytime concert at school, local restaurant)