Recorded by Harry James
Arranged by Neal Hefti, Prepared by Dylan Canterbury, Rob DuBoff, and Jeffrey Sultanof
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Cat #: JLP-8720DL


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Audio Sample:

Edition: Jazz Big Band Arrangement

Description: Swing - Medium Difficult

Publisher: Jazz Lines Publications

Although trumpeter Harry James was best known for his romantic ballads, his bands often displayed a more adventurous and experimental side. This Neal Hefti arrangement from 1949 is a textbook example of James' willingness to embrace the new bebop sounds of the day.

The arrangement starts out with a brisk opening flourish from James' trumpet before the full ensemble enters. The simple riff of a melody is played in unison by the saxophones and trombones beginning at measure 5, with the band playing a full powered dissonant blast at the end of each A section. The bridge, beginning at measure 14 and once again stated in unison by the saxes and trombones, is pure bebop, sounding at times more like something that Charlie Parker or Dizzy Gillespie would have composed.

A more explicit nod to Gillespie comes with the brief trumpet call-and-response figure in measures 28 and 29 before the band settles into backing up a surprisingly modern James trumpet solo. Similar boppish ensemble figures set up an alto saxophone solo at measure 49, a trombone solo at measure 68, and a piano solo at measure 80. The ensemble returns to a more typical swing style for the final melody statement at measure 86, employing the often-used big band cliche of playing softer on the repeat. In the original parts, handwritten notes indicate that this section was to be repeated ad-lib during live performances. The ending of the arrangement features some James high note blasts over the hard riffing ensemble, coming to a conclusion on one final dissonant, bebop-inspired chord.

This arrangement is written for jazz big band with trumpet soloist. This is not a transcription - it has been prepared from the original set of parts used during the recorded session.

Full Score
Trumpet Soloist
2 Alto Saxophones
2 Tenor Saxophones
Baritone Saxophone
4 Trumpets
4 Trombones
Trumpet Soloist: G5
Trumpet 1: Eb6
Trombone 1: C5