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Music Discuss specific tunes, the writing of tunes, other questions, concerns, etc. related specifically to the music or music books.

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Old 09-03-2019, 11:51 AM   #1
Peter.Bailey.Bagpiper
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Default Jazz standards for GHB?

Hey all,

This weekend I had the great pleasure to join the house band at a fantastic jazz bar near where I live. We played When the Saints Go Marching In together because it was pretty much the only tune I knew that fit both the pipes and the venue. We played it in Bb although Eb is also doable for that tune.

I spoke to the band during the break and they asked me what else I knew and wanted to maybe plan something out in the future.

So that's where I'm at - wondering what else I might be able to jam with them on. I say "jazz" in the title but really any sort of hymn/gospel stuff would work too - the band likes to do popular/simple sing-alongs like I'll Fly Away and This Little Light of Mine.

Thanks!
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Old 09-03-2019, 07:58 PM   #2
Joseph Diodato
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Default Re: Jazz standards for GHB?

Peter,

This may be on your radar already, but Keith MacDonald's Church Piper series sounds like a good fit for your needs. Perhaps you might check out the Privy Piping book as well.

Cheers,
Joe
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Old 09-04-2019, 12:09 AM   #3
TwitchyFingers
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Default Re: Jazz standards for GHB?

George Gershwin's "Summertime" works and the drones shouldn't get in the way of the backup band. Start on your F.
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Old 09-04-2019, 04:49 AM   #4
Klondike Waldo
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Default Re: Jazz standards for GHB?

It would depend on what you mean by "Jazz." If trad/NewOrleans style, I know "Didn't He Ramble" and "Back Home In Indiana" work .
(I used to play tuba in trad jazz bands).
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Old 09-04-2019, 11:03 AM   #5
Peter.Bailey.Bagpiper
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Default Re: Jazz standards for GHB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TwitchyFingers View Post
George Gershwin's "Summertime" works and the drones shouldn't get in the way of the backup band. Start on your F.
All the references* I pulled show you need a full octave below the first note - given that we don't have a low F, how do you handle this?

* I even tried playing along with Ella on my piano and she starts on F (natural) and sure enough by the time she hits the low note on the y in "easy" it's a full octave down.
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Old 09-04-2019, 07:56 PM   #6
TwitchyFingers
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Default Re: Jazz standards for GHB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter.Bailey.Bagpiper View Post
All the references* I pulled show you need a full octave below the first note - given that we don't have a low F, how do you handle this?

* I even tried playing along with Ella on my piano and she starts on F (natural) and sure enough by the time she hits the low note on the y in "easy" it's a full octave down.
You'd have to stay on the B instead of going to the octave F. In retrospect, Summertime isn't the best suggestion.
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Old 09-05-2019, 12:01 AM   #7
TwitchyFingers
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Default Re: Jazz standards for GHB?

I've been wracking my brain for a jazz standard that fits the chanter's abilities without fudging an octave. About the only one that I can think of in our range is Moonglow. I tried it. It fits. And I wouldn't play it in public.
There are very likely others, but they're likely to be problematic for two reasons:
1: A lot of jazz tunes are going to involve chromatics. So, you're going to have to be really up on your cross fingerings. F nat, C nat, E flat, G sharp.
2. Most jazz standards are going to fall heavily into songs as opposed to tunes. A lot of those are going to have a lot of the same note repeated in the lyrics, which makes gracing clunky at best. Not being able to shade or tweak a note with embouchure like a sax or trumpet is likely to make jazz-like expression very difficult.
For as long as I've been piping, I've been a fan of mainly hot jazz and sweet sound from the 1930's. And for all that time, I've rarely if ever thought to play those tunes on pipes. It's just so hard to get expression without making it sound rinky-dink. In the same way, I wouldn't sit in on the 1812 Overture.
The other option would be to take a piping standard and jazz it up something like this:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCL_...axMh7WKFpyRZTE
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