Test pieces for the 2020 National Youth Jazz Competition are:
Composed by John Coltrane in 1959
First recorded on Giant Steps (1960)
Mr. P.C. is a twelve-bar minor blues in a swing feel in the key of C minor. On the original recording of Mr. P.C. the tempo is extremely fast, but there are several recordings where the tempo is more moderate. Choose a tempo that plays to the strengths of the performers, and maintain a swing feel appropriate for that tempo. There are several sample arrangements available on recordings and written charts, but original arrangements are welcome as long as they include a swing feel throughout, the twelve-bar minor blues form, and solo and/or collective improvisation.
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Big Band Section:
Groovemaker by Jeff Taylor – driving, straight-ahead jazz swinger with tight ensembles and roaring shout choruses.
Groovemaker is a straight-ahead jazz at a medium-up tempo. At 19 crisp brass articulations are very important for the right effect and be sure to observe the difference in dynamics on the two times through. At 45, solo space is provided for the 1st Alto and 2nd Trumpet and suggested written-out solos are included on these parts. If desired, other instruments could solo as well (tenor saxes using trumpet chord changes, trombones using rhythm section changes, etc.). Solos begin at bar 53. If your soloists desire to play longer solos simply repeat bars 45 to 69 but play the pick-up note at bar 69 and the background material from bars 45 to 54 only at the beginning of each new solo.
The figures utilized in the chart are fairly standard and should present few problems for younger players. The rhythm section should be careful at bars 9-12 of the intro as the back beat pattern is changed there. The drummer should continue playing the hi-hat on 2 and 4 and kick the written figure with the bass drum, snare drum and tom tom. The recording illustrates this perfectly. Insist on solid ffp’s at bar 45 and fp’s at 15, 69 and 77. Correctly played accents and articulations will help a great deal in achieving a good jazz feel.
You can purchase the score here https://www.ejazzlines.com/?q=groovemaker