Recorded by Count Basie; Brand New 2018 Edition
Arranged by Frank Foster
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Cat #: JLP-51213DL


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Edition: Jazz Big Band Arrangement

Description: Swing - Difficult

Publisher: Jazz Lines Publications


New Edition for 2018!

First recorded on 'Not Now, I'll Tell You When,' Frank Foster's 'Back to the Apple' is yet another entry into his stellar record as one of the primary arrangers for the "New Testament" Count Basie bands of the 1950s and early 1960s. It's a thrilling ride from start to finish that keeps the listener guessing despite it sticking closely to a standard Db blues form.

A typical Basie introduction sets up the quick tempo before the full band enters at measure 9. The saxophones handle unison melody duties while being ushered along by some razor-sharp wah-wah backgrounds in the brass before the composer takes the spotlight as tenor saxophone soloist at measure 33. The tenor solo lasts four choruses in total, with some backgrounds on the third chorus at measure 45 that tease at a shout section without quite getting there.

Counter-acting descending and ascending lines after the tenor solo set up a dueling series of ensemble solis, beginning with the brass for a chorus at measure 81 and followed by the saxes for two at measure 93. The full band converges at measure 117 at full blast, gradually tapering off to make way for four choruses of trumpet solo beginning at measure 133. Joe Newman plays the solo with a Harmon mute on the original recording, but consider this to be musical optional attire.

One chorus of Basie piano continues to taper the volume down before the final shout section at measure 170. Although the band is playing at a minimal decibel level, there should be a relentlessly driving sense of swing throughout. The shout gradually builds until 194, where things return to full strength for a chorus. Once again, the volume dips slightly for a moment at measure 206, where the brass return to their plungers from earlier, but the momentum continues to build all the way until a drum break at measure 242. The arrangement comes to a thrilling conclusion with some saxophone soli fills around the brass and rhythm section, a quick Basie piano tinkle, and one final powerful full band blast.

This arrangement is for jazz big band. Basie's piano introduction has been transcribed for your pianist's convenience, but otherwise this arrangement is not a transcription - it has been prepared from Frank Foster's original score and parts.


Full Score
2 Alto Saxophones
2 Tenor Saxophones
Baritone Saxophone
4 Trumpets
4 Trombones
Trumpet 1-3: Eb6
Trombone 1: Cb5