Recorded by the Count Basie Orchestra
Arranged by Neal Hefti, Prepared by Rob DuBoff, Dylan Canterbury, and Jeffrey Sultanof
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Cat #: JLP-7741


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Edition: Jazz Big Band Arrangement

Description: Swing - Medium Difficult

Publisher: Jazz Lines Publications

The trombone section of the Count Basie Orchestra of the 1950s - Henry Coker, Al Grey, and Benny Powell - was one of the most dynamic sections in the history of big band jazz. Although the arrangement doesn’t feature any improvisation, Teddy the Toad served as a wonderful vehicle for the trio's unique musical personality.

The entire arrangement is fit around the framework of a concert Eb blues. Following an uproarious introduction from the whole band, Basie takes a partial chorus piano solo to mellow out the mood before the trombones enter with the somewhat lumbering melody at measure 13. This melody is repeated twice, with a simple cup-muted trumpet counter line coming in on the second time.

A pedal point and descending figure in the trumpets and brass set the stage for an extended trombone soli that begins at measure 30. A few measures later, the second main melody figure enters and is repeated by the trombone trio twice. The main backgrounds during this section come from some sharp plunger-muted trumpets that start off relatively sparse but become more busy and prodding as time goes on. The saxes add in a slightly corkscrewing counter line at measure 51 to add to the developing complexity. The original melody returns at measure 63, with the final few measures being tagged a couple of times before a dragged-out rubato trombone section cadenza wraps things up over a surprisingly minor-key finish.

This publication was based on the original set of parts used during the recording session - this is not a transcription.


Full Score
2 Alto Saxophones
2 Tenor Saxophones
Baritone Saxophone
4 Trumpets
3 Trombones
Trumpet 1: D6
Trombone 1: C5