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A new challenge - one I really want
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paul

paulmiller



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Location: Lewisville, Texas, USA
No. 1 Posted on Apr 17, 2014 9:02 PM Profile | PM | Email | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
Our big band is at a point where there's nothing we're working toward, no definite shows or gigs coming up. So John has had us reading a lot of new music. Mostly he'll pass out a chart, we play it, and if he thinks it's pretty good then he'll ask our opinions (if he doesn't like it, it's off the list). He also sent everybody in the band a list of all 1400 charts in the library, and people are free to request charts, which I have not done (yet).

So a couple of days ago he emailed me asking if I wanted to read Rich's "Channel 1 Suite" the next night. My response was yes, but please let me work with the chart for a week first to get comfortable with the time changes.

Got the chart yesterday, and next week we're going to play my absolute favorite Rich opus. Given the choice I'd rather play this than West Side Story. It's not going to sound like Rich, but I can't wait for next Wednesday. The band has been really wailing lately, and the thought of getting to kick them through that arrangement gives me goosebumps.



The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely preferable to the presence of those who think they've found it. - Terry Pratchett

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pwc





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No. 2 Posted on Apr 17, 2014 11:12 PM Profile | PM | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
Sounds challenging and good luck with it. I am in hiatus right now and looking for some playing opportunities .....


Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.
Singlestroker





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No. 3 Posted on Apr 18, 2014 10:43 AM Profile | PM | Email | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
That is some challenge Paul. It must be nice to be able to say that you're up to it. I don't think I'll ever be in that happy position.

Our leader decided to have a couple of months without a gig this year, so that we could go through some material in much the same way as you are now doing. Unfortunately, the result has been a much-depleted attendance, so that we haven't been able to enjoy the sessions as much as expected.



paul

paulmiller



Posts: 2708
Joined: Jan 23, 2005
Location: Lewisville, Texas, USA
No. 4 Posted on Apr 20, 2014 11:04 AM Profile | PM | Email | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
The hard parts of that chart, I think, are the time changes and the solos. I was surprised the first time I saw the chart to see how it's written, and that requires an adjustment to my thinking about it. I actually think it may be easier than it sounds when listening.

I don't pretend that I can come even close to what Buddy did on the solos, but there I'll just do my best to keep the feel he had and play something interesting.

Besides, playing stuff that's outside our usual boundaries is how we get better.



The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely preferable to the presence of those who think they've found it. - Terry Pratchett

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Singlestroker





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No. 5 Posted on Apr 21, 2014 10:33 AM Profile | PM | Email | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
paul wrote:... playing stuff that's outside our usual boundaries is how we get better.


I agree. I am never happy unless I'm improving, and that's the way I shall stay.



paul

paulmiller



Posts: 2708
Joined: Jan 23, 2005
Location: Lewisville, Texas, USA
No. 6 Posted on Apr 23, 2014 12:46 PM Profile | PM | Email | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
The challenge has gotten delayed by a week. I woke up at 3 AM Monday with severe pain that turned out to be a kidney stone. So now I'm stuck at home, drinking lots of water, eating pain pills regularly, and waiting for a 2 mm stone to pass through my system.

Not what I had in mind for the week.



The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely preferable to the presence of those who think they've found it. - Terry Pratchett

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Singlestroker





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No. 7 Posted on Apr 23, 2014 1:41 PM Profile | PM | Email | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
paul wrote:
The challenge has gotten delayed by a week. I woke up at 3 AM Monday with severe pain that turned out to be a kidney stone. So now I'm stuck at home, drinking lots of water, eating pain pills regularly, and waiting for a 2 mm stone to pass through my system.

Not what I had in mind for the week.


For what it's worth, I wish I had a mere kidney stone. I say that tongue-in-cheek. It's a nasty thing to have. I was comparing it with the biopsy I'm having of my only kidney next week to see if the rapidly-growing tumour on there is malignant. I lost the other one seven years ago, to another tumour. These biopsies are taken by guiding a needle into the kidney while the radiographer watches where it is going through an ultra-sound scan. At worst the complications of taking the sample can kill. Thus, for the second time in a few years I could be dead in a few days' time. I think I would prefer that to the other bad possibility, which is that the biopsy destroys the kidney and leaves me with none.

I look forward to catching up with you shortly, when we can both resume our current challenges!

By the way, I had a listen to some of your past recordings, posted on your website. I like them. No, I like them a lot.



Singlestroker





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No. 8 Posted on Apr 23, 2014 11:12 PM Profile | PM | Email | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
I apologise for my last post, Paul. In hindsight it reads as if I'm belittling your problem. That wasn't my intention.


paul

paulmiller



Posts: 2708
Joined: Jan 23, 2005
Location: Lewisville, Texas, USA
No. 9 Posted on Apr 24, 2014 8:14 AM Profile | PM | Email | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
No worries. My problem is indeed pretty minor. It hurts, but I have great pain meds, and am basically sitting around waiting for the stone to pass. It's an expensive inconvenience, but my life isn't threatened.

All our thoughts are with you. I hope it goes really well for you. Hang in there.

p.s. - thanks for the kind compliments. I really appreciate them.



The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely preferable to the presence of those who think they've found it. - Terry Pratchett

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Singlestroker





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No. 10 Posted on Apr 24, 2014 10:19 AM Profile | PM | Email | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
Paul, thank you for your message. Music is a great thing for keeping the mind off these things. You have actually contributed to that by starting off this thread. You put me into "Buddy mode", so I'm now going through as much material of his as I can. I don't think I could ever tire of him and the band at the Montreal Jazz Festival 1982.


paul

paulmiller



Posts: 2708
Joined: Jan 23, 2005
Location: Lewisville, Texas, USA
No. 11 Posted on Apr 30, 2014 8:49 PM Profile | PM | Email | Quote | Search | Copy | Favorite
Tonight was big band night, and we read Channel 1 Suite down. I hadn't done as much work on it as I wanted to last week (I only started feeling good again yesterday), but what little I'd done helped considerably.

Good news is that we got through it and only had to stop a couple of times. The chart perfectly maps the Mercy, Mercy recording, with the bass trombone solo at the end. When we finished John was happy, and it's obvious we can do this song. So we'll start working on it with an eye toward a potential show in October.

I got through it ok, but it wasn't as smooth and crisp as it needs to be, and my solos tonight were striving for mediocrity, but it will get better.

On a related note, we annually do a tribute to another big band at one of the venues we play. We've done Basie, Herman, and others, and are honoring Les Elgart next month. John said tonight that next year we'll do a Buddy Rich tribute, at which point our lead trumpet said, "We have to do West Side Story." Time to start working out.



The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely preferable to the presence of those who think they've found it. - Terry Pratchett

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