19 April 2013
Post 50: IMPROVISE A THRILLING FINAL NUMBER
It has been a great gig. But now it's time to play the last number. Your energetic young dancers are excited and still want one more good tune to finish what has been a terrific evening.
So: MAKE UP AN INSTANT JAZZ THRILLER.
Agree on your key as Bb. Beat it in at a cracking tempo. Crotchet = 220 will do nicely.
Start by playing three or four choruses with the full band improvising on the chord sequence:
IV IV I I V7 V7 I I
(Think The Girls Go Crazy or The Bucket's Got a Hole In It).
Make sure the tempo never drops.
On a signal from the leader, switch to improvisations on the standard 12-bar pattern. Play twenty or more choruses of this, with plenty of variety (as directed by the leader): you can have ensemble choruses, backed solo choruses, 4-bar trades and choruses against stop chords. Keep the tempo pounding.
Now (on the leader's signal) go back to the first theme (Bucket's Got a Hole) and do the same again - a variety of chorus treatments, always maintaining the excitement and the tempo. Plenty of ensemble work is required.
The leader decides whether to go back again to the 12-bar and also when to give the signal for a thrilling out-chorus.
Want to see how it can all work?
Very well indeed, in the hands of great musicians: