[Dixielandjazz] Two Horn ensembles

Steve Barbone barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Fri Sep 15 13:30:59 PDT 2006

"Edgerton, Paul A" <paul.edgerton at eds.com>

> My answer is that variety is even more important with a very small
> group.  Play in parallel thirds and sixths.  Play counterpoint.  Don't
> avoid unison or octaves.  Take turns.  Use doubles, mutes or even lay
> out.  Play rhythmically.  Play melodically.  Try to work in as many
> variations in texture and dynamics as possible.  Let the changes in
> texture help to bring out the form of individual phrases as well as the
> more obvious eight bar sections.  Experiment, but above all -- LISTEN!


Or, play like Gerry Mulligan & Chet Baker. If you have good ears, it is a
snap to do and lots of fun. As Paul says, LISTEN. That is the key, and just
play the pretty fill notes that go with what you are hearing from the lead
horn. Then switch lead.

Easy enough to switch melody during the song. e.g. 1st horn takes melody
going in, then 2nd horn takes melody on bridge, then switch back on last 8
etc. Don't think about it too much, just do it.

I work numerous gigs in 4 piece format. Trombone, Clarinet, Bass, Guitar. It
is enormous fun and the music just flows if you have the right guys/gals.
My other 3 are Ace Tesone, Sonny Troy and Glenn Dodson and they make even me
sound good.


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