Bart Marantz NPR/KERA Jazz Education Interview
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By: Frank Mantooth
Instrumentation: Big Band
Publisher: Kendor Music, Inc.
Grade 3 Slow Swing Tempo = 108 $40.00
“Loafin” is an excellent medium tempo chart that works well for most high school big bands. The inherent risk with a chart at this tempo is the youthful tendency to pick up or rush the tempo. To avoid this, players should subdivide triplet 8ths and constantly remind themselves to “lay back” and take it easy, as the title implies.
Various compositional techniques and textures are used in this chart. The four-way (optional five) unison has the initial unhurried statement. At the bridge (measures 15) the parings in thirds are the same between the alto and tenor, as well as the trumpets. The 2-beat feel returns from the last “A” section of the first chorus, with melody honors going to the four unison players from the first section.
At measure 31 there are the old double 4-way voicings (upper four saxes doubled by three trumpets and a trombone). At the repeat of the “A” section the saxes with trumpet 1 share the unison voicing with the others providing short chords. A piano solo at measure 47 provides a nice textural contrast with a shout chorus that follows at measure 55.
The bridge from measure 15 returns at measure 63, and texturally the chart tapers back to the 2-beat feel unison section at the end. There is a critical piano solo two measures from the end.
Remember this chart is called “Loafin,” but for any band playing this arrangement it will be movin!
Top note for trumpet is F in the staff