My weekly schedule is structured so that Fridays are dedicated solely to “creative activity.” I have no Friday classes, and do my best not to accept other appointments. I lock myself up in my office or home studio, roll up my sleeves, and work without distractions. This Friday I wrote (scribbled!) lead lines for the remainder of the big band chart I’m preparing. I will harmonize these passages over the weekend. I am not wedding myself to any of the following, but I think it’s a decent start. First, I wrote this trumpet section soli line:
Writing a trombone soli was next on my agenda. I led into it (following trumpet solos) with a subtle quote from the introduction to “Bye Bye Blackbird,” as recorded by Miles Davis.
Finally, I wrote two choruses that will be played by the full ensemble before “recapping” with the melody. The first chorus will start off bluesy and rather quietly, and will then develop into a full out “shout chorus.” [My gut feeling is that the second chorus will need to be tweaked, to make it BIGGER and more dramatic… but we’ll see.]
I ended the day by entering these lead lines into Finale, along with rehearsal letters, thereby making a visible framework for the entire chart. Going forward, it will be an exercise in “filling in the blanks” — harmonizing, writing rhythm section parts, etc. I’m in the home stretch!