Bart Marantz NPR/KERA Jazz Education Interview
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Written and Arranged By: Carl Stromen
Instrumentation: Big Band
Publisher: Alfred / Belwin Jazz *First Year Charts Series
Grade 2 1/2 Swing March q = 108 $38.00
“Blues March" is exactly that, a swinging march that will take your first year players and give them a bridge for learning the swing style in an idiom they are already familiar with. Staying true to this form the drum kit sets the mood with a cadence (street beat) written out for your “young” drummer. When the melody enters after just 4 measures of drums playing a cadence, be careful that the saxes and trumpets are also following the rooftop (^) hard accents written by the composer. These are essential dynamics and articulations that will set up the entire piece.
Carl Stromen supplies a stop time rhythm section built right into the piece and will be a hit with your young players as well as the listening crowd. A solo section is provided after the main melody statement and is left to the discretion of the director for improvisers and instrumentation. This “open” section allows students to start improvising early on in their introduction to jazz and is a welcomed addition to this chart.
There are some nice backgrounds behind the soloist, again cued by the director. This makes it easy for the soloist to know where they are in relation to ending their improvised statement and adds colors and texture to the performance. There are written voicings for the pianist and guitarist as well as suggested rhythms for the bass player and drummer. Carl has taken many educational steps to help make this a good learning tool and will provide a solid performance experience for young artists.
“Blues March" is a good beginning chart that will teach style and improvisation while allowing your band and those listening to have fun.
Top note for trumpet is written E in the staff