Recorded by Jimmy Rushing with the Count Basie Orchestra
Arrangement Oliver Nelson, Prepared by Dylan Canterbury and Rob DuBoff
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Cat #: JLP-9973DL


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Edition: Jazz Little Big Band Arrangement with Vocal

Description: Swing - Medium

Publisher: Jazz Lines Publications

Blues in the Dark was originally performed by legendary blues shouter Jimmy Rushing with the Count Basie Orchestra in the 1930s. This version, however, comes from an Oliver Nelson-arranged session in 1967. Although Rushing was nearing the end of his life, his powerful voice wasn't diminished in the slightest, and Nelson's harmonically rich and moody style served as an exquisite complement to the singer's unmistakable style.

The arrangement is quite simple from top to bottom, and is essentially the same melody repeated twice with a trombone solo (courtesy of Dickie Wells on the original recording) sandwiched in at measure 33. The horn backgrounds are not technically challenging, but feature some dense harmonies that need to be played in tune in order to work. The main difference between the vocal choruses is that the first has a brief horn shout interlude at measure 17, which should be played in as Basie-esque a way as possible despite the modern harmonies. It is important to remember that every ensemble note, whether written backgrounds or solo fills, should serve the purpose of supporting the vocalist at all times.

This arrangement is for little big band with male vocal soloist. It is not a transcription - it has been prepared from Oliver Nelson's original score and the set of parts used during the recording session. The vocal key is Bb.


Full Score
Alto Saxophone
Tenor Saxophone
Baritone Saxophone
2 Trumpets
Vocal Key: Bb
Trumpet 1: G5