Wednesday, November 14, 2018

November 10, 2018

Next Time: Sat., Nov. 17, 11am-3pm, TowerLight (3601 Wooddale, St. Louis Park) 


Your regular scribe was feeling irregular, and was not present for this edition of the Workshop. He is taking the report from the trusty Raphael and passing it on to you. 

Present were, of course, Raphael (bass), along with Sam (trumpet and trombone), Wes (tenor), Jack K (trumpet), Bob (guitar), Carl (trombone) and Annie (vocals). The songs played are as follows:

In A Mellow Tone (I-206), Sam
Now's The Time (II-293), Jack
Salt Peanuts (II-340), Raphael
Blue Trane (I-54), Wes
Out Of Nowhere (I-318), Sam
The Nearness Of You (II-285), Jack
It Could Happen To You (II-204), Raphael
Along Came Betty (III-22), Wes
'Deed I Do (III-92), Annie
Little Girl Blue (III-243), Annie (Really struggled to get 3/4 to 4/4/ transition.)
2 Degrees E, 3 Degrees W (II-408), Carl
You're Nobody Till Somebody Loves You (II-438), Annie
The Way You Look Tonight (II-415), Annie
Softly, As In A Morning Sunrise (II-355), Bob
Old Man From The Old Country (I-308), Annie
Jersey Bounce (III-223), Raphael
On The Sunny Side Of The Street (III-312), Annie

Reference recording of Little Girl Blue (Ella Fitzgerald)


--SJH

Friday, November 9, 2018

November 3, 2018

Next Time: Saturday, November 10, 11am-3pm, TowerLight (3601 Wooddale Avenue, Saint Louis Park)


On hand at one point or another were Jack K (trumpet), Sam (trumpet and trombone), Wes (tenor), Raphael (bass), Steve M (alto), Steve C (piano), Steve H (alto, piano), Victor (vocals), and Jim D (clarinet and vocals). We had to keep sending people upstairs for a while with the front desk unattended, so people were in and out.

Playing got started with Sam's handout, a harmonized version of Lullaby of Birdland. Jack took the next number, I Could Write A Book (I-186). Steve M gave the call to How High The Moon (I-180). Steve C went Latin with Blue Bossa (I-50). Yours truly switched over to piano for one tune while Raphael gave us the challenge on Waltz For Debby (I-432). We almost knew it was the call before Wes opted for Donna Lee (I-123). Your scribe dug into his bag for a four-part version of Four Brothers. Sam worked us hard on Dear Old Stockholm (I-102).

We started some vocalizing with Victor's first choice, Basin Street Blues (II-37), followed by Stardust (II-367). Steve M took another turn, this time Indiana (II-201). Victor was ready to go on Bye Bye Blackbird (II-73). Jim D thought it would be fun to do the vocalese version of Robbin's Nest (II-330), which has a different name which your scribe forgot to scribe. Victor went back to his standard, Avalon (II-25). There is apparently also a vocalese version of Red Top (III-332), with which Jim D also regaled us. Steve C changed things up a bit with Oleo (I-309). Victor got in one last vocal call, Blue Skies (II-58). Raphael decided on the old standard Out Of Nowhere (I-318). Sam took us out on My Little Suede Shoes (II-282).

--SJH

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

October 27, 2018

Next Time: Saturday, November 3, 11am-3pm. We will be at TowerLight (3601 Wooddale, St. Louis Park) at least through the new year as The Hook and Ladder plays out a busy calendar, then undergoes renovations.


We began with a short list of Steve C (piano), Raphael (bass) and Steve H (alto). Newcomer Doug (alto) was there to begin, but then had to leave before we got out of the first tune; we hope he'll return. Raphael took the first call, Cedar Walton's Holy Land (II-166). Steve C opted for the very classic The Blue Room (I-53). Yours truly stayed on the blue theme with Bluesette (I-56). Raphael, just looking for something new, found Bolivia (III-56), which took us quite a while to sort out, but proved fun in the end. Steve C pulled out another oldie, Flamingo (IV-134). Right next to that was A Foggy Day (IV-135), the choice of your scribe.

By this point, our guitarists, Bob and Serdar, and Wes on tenor, had made their entrance. Bob took his chance to call You're Nobody Till Somebody Loves You (II-438). Serdar followed with Tenor Madness (II-390). Wes surprised no one by making us work hard on Anthropology (I-29). Bob eased up on the madness and the studies with So Nice (I-362).

Vocal time came around; Annie (vocals) and Carl (trombone) had arrived in the midst of the instrumentals. Annie's first choice was Dearly Beloved (I-103), which we took at a lazy swing until Annie slowed down even more for something almost sultry. She followed this with the pretty 'Tis Autumn (handout). Carl was allowed the instrumental call, and we played So What (I-364). Annie went into Full Fall mode, with the melancholy Autumn In New York (I-38), followed by the bouncier Autumn Leaves (I-39). Wes chose old favorite Donna Lee (I-123) for the instrumental break. Back to vocals, we were treated to My Man (III-294), followed by Exactly Like You (III-116). Your scribe took it upon himself to put us in 3/4 time with Alice In Wonderland (I-17). Annie's final two for the day were Ev'ry Time We Say Goodbye (III-113), and I'm Old Fashioned (III-66). We topped things off with  everybody getting a chorus on Wes' suggetion, Ain't Misbehavin' (III-13).

--SJH

Thursday, October 25, 2018

October 20, 2018

Next Time: Saturday, October 27, 1-5pm, Hook and Ladder, Lake and Minnehaha, Mpls.  UNConfirmed!

New Plan: Saturday, October 27, 11am-3pm, TowerLight, 3601 Wooddale Ave, St. Louis Park


Your scribe is behind in grading, so this one will have to be quick.

Present were Raphael (bass), Steve C (piano), Serdar (guitar), Craig (guitar), Jack D (trumpet), Jack K (trumpet), Carl (trombone), Annie (vocals), and Steve H (soprano). Yours truly was late to the proceedings for various reasons, arriving halfway through, and Raphael was once again kind enough to keep tabs on things. Tunes and musician who called it are listed here.

My Romance (I-289) Jack K
Killing Me Softly With His Song (IV-241) Craig
Exactly Like You (III-116) Steve C
Masquerade (III-269) Raphael
Blue Monk (I-52) Serdar
If I Should Lose You (II-193) Jack D
Nancy With The Laughing Face (III-298) Jack K
'Tis Autumn (handout) Annie
Never Let Me Go (III-299) Annie
Bean's Blues (handout) Steve H
How Little We Know (hadnout) Annie
Let The Good Times Roll (handout) Annie
Give Me The Simple Life (handout) Annie
So What (I-364) Carl
Quiet Nights Of Quiet Stars (I-335) Annie
Without A Song (II-427) Annie
Billie's Bounce (II-44) Serdar
Witchcraft (III-452) Steve H
St. Thomas (II-337) Serdar

--SJH


Thursday, October 18, 2018

October 13, 2018

Next Time: Saturday, October 20, 1-5pm. TowerLight, 3601 Wooddale Ave., St. Louis Park

FJF practice: Bean's Blues

A good crowd was on hand as we returned after several weeks to the Hook. Jack D (trumpet), Jack K (trumpet), Sam (bass), Wes (tenor) Steve H (piano), Steve M (alto), Craig (guitar), Victor (vocals), Carl (trombone), Annie (vocals) and Dick (vocals).

We are preparing for the possibility of doing some sort of gig as a group, so we are beginning to run through some tunes for which we have multi-part charts. We started this week with Bean's Blues, an original. After hacking through that for a while, then moved on to the regular things we do. Jack D called Gypsy In My Soul. Jack K changed the tempo with Tune Up. Wes took us back to the roots with Ain't Misbehavin'. Steve M called the classic East Of The Sun, West Of The Moon. Sam couldn't wait until the end of our session, turning to favorite St. Thomas. Carl wrapped up the instrumental portion with Doxy.

Victor got the vocals going with Bye Bye Blackbird. Annie introduced us to the great 'Tis Autumn. Dick opted for Cole Porter's All Of You. Victor answered with All Of Me. Annie brought music for Give Me The Simple Life. Dick decided on Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me (II-107). Yours truly got the call on the instrumental break, turning to I Got Rhythm (IV-182). Victor took a vocal turn on Blue Skies (II-58). Annie slowed things down on Who Can I Turn To (II-423). Dick chose old favorite I Could Write A Book. Victor gave another go at In The Still Of The Night (II-198). Annie continued to work on Without A Song (II-428).  Craig, in Dick's absence, called the instrumental Work Song (II-429). We finished off with everyone chiming in on Basin Street Blues (II-37).

--SJH

Thursday, October 11, 2018

October 6, 2018

Next Time: Saturday, October 13, 1-5pm, Hook and Ladder (Lake and Minnehaha, MPLS)


Sam's FJF practice: Bean's Blues (I'll provide the chart.)

We got started this rainy morning with Sam (trombone, trumpet), Steve H (piano), Wes (tenor), newcomer Ari (trumpet), Raphael (bass), Craig (guitar) and Steve M (alto). Apparently some listeners stopped in at some point, and one even joined in!

Things got started with Sam's choice, Lullaby of Birdland (I-256). Ari, by virtue of sitting next to Sam, got the next choice, going with All Blues (I-18). Craig was up next, and opted for Satin Doll (I-349). Before heading out, yours truly called seasonally appropriate Autumn Leaves (I-39).

Sam and your scribe both had to leave early, but Raphael took notes on the remainder. In fact, it was Raphael's turn, and he chose Soul Eyes (II-261). Ari pulled out a favorite of several Workshoppers, St. Thomas (II-339). Steve M. turned to an excellent alto number, Misty (I-277). Ari had to run at 1:00, and Wes was out early as well, but those left behind continued gamely on.

Craig called You're Nobody 'Til Somebody Loves You (II-438). Someone requested I've Never Been In Love Before (III-194). Raphael found the little-remarked Telephone Song (III-390). Craig got another shot and went with Moonlight In Vermont (III-282). Peggy, who had stopped in to listen, got a turn with Summertime (IV-xxx). Steve M chose I Love Paris (I-189). Raphael came back with Night In Tunisia (I-302). Craig really dug back with the old boogie Caledonia (III-70). Someone called I"ve Grown Accustomed To Her Face (III-192). Raphael returned to a number we had done the previous week, Kalmar and Ruby's Three Little Words (III-406). Steve M. decided on On The Sunny Side Of The Street (III-312). Craig wrapped things up with Crazy (III-86).

--SJH

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

September 29, 2018

Next Time: Saturday, October 6, 11am-3pm, TowerLight, 3601 Wooddale Ave. St. Louis Park


Sam (trumpet and trombone), Steve (piano and soprano), and Raphael (bass) set up while having a conversation about the possibility of a dedicated group of Workshoppers playing in the Freedom Jazz Festival next year. Then we got started on some tunes, starting with Sam's Add-A-Tune, Billie's Bounce (II-44). Your scribe, having been taken over by an Ellingtonian spirit, had a few of the Duke's old songs in mind; first up, Black and Tan Fantasy (II-50). We worked on it for a while, just trying to make sure of the best way to proceed through the chart, and whether to solo on a major blues or a minor blues. Raphael was happy to move on to Early Autumn (II-114). Sam took us through an easy-swingy version of Softly As In A Morning Sunrise (II-355). Wanting to play a little more upbeat soprano, yours truly called Tangerine (II-386). Raphael worked us out on Yardbird Suite (II-433). By this time, Annie (vocals) and Carl (trombone) had settled in, so Carl got the last instrumental choice, surprising us with Watermelon Man (III-429). It remains this writer's contention that old men and funk do not mix.

Annie began the vocal segment at 1:00 with a reprise of Early Autumn (II-114), and followed it with Give Me The Simple Life (handout). Sam, trying to match Carl's cheek, opted for Sister Sadie (III-355); this writer's opinion on the matter (see above) was only reinforced. Back to vocals, fortunately, Annie chose September Song (II-344), followed by How Little We Know (handout). The Ellingtonian spirit once again seizing the piano player, he called Creole Love Call (III-88) for the instrumental. Another pair for the vocalist, this time Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans (II-108), and Without A Song (II-428). Somewhere in here we had gathered a handful of listeners, who settled into the chairs in the TowerLight theater where we play and were a most appreciative group. Raphael decided to pick up the pace a bit, and came up with a lively rendition of Get Me To The Church On Time (II-146). We finished with three featuring Annie: Exactly Like You (III-116), Fine and Mellow (II-122), and Quiet Nights Of Quiet Stars, otherwise known as Corcovado (I-335).

Participant Picks
Black and Tan Fantasy
Duke Ellington
Theolonius Monk

Creole Love Call
Duke Ellington

Get Me To The Church On Time
Shelley Manne/ Andre Previn
Oscar Peterson Trio

Exactly Like You
Aretha Franlkin
Diana Krall
Nina Simone

How Little We Know
Nat King Cole
Hoagy Carmichael and Lauren Bacall