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Old 03-17-2014, 01:31 PM
rrayner rrayner is offline
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 722
Default Harlem Nocturne Septet

“Harlem Nocturne” was written by Earle Hagen and Dick Rogers in 1939. This was the other “Nocturne” in my band’s repertoire, the other being my theme song, “Autumn Nocturne”. This arrangement again features tenor saxophone, which was my instrument -- when you are the band leader, you get to say who gets the solos.

I have marked the tempo as “sultry”, which is the mood I tried to project with this piece. I probably started playing this piece back in the late ‘50s, working at the time in either trios or quartets. When I got to the Air Force and was fronting my own septet, this was one of my feature arrangements. The background riffs of the other three horns are pretty simplistic, but it was not meant to be a complicated arrangement. I took liberties with the bridge -- it is not played completely like it was written. I am not certain if I heard someone else play the variation or if I just came up with it on my own.

As will be my practice with all future contributions of septet/octet/big band arrangements, I have notated the drum part (for printing) with standard drum notation and the notes set to a Velocity of 1. The “real” drum part is hidden on the Conductor’s Score, but can be viewed by opening the Working Score. I have anomaly in the drum part in that I have several rim shots, measure 1 for instance, which requires a drum stick. But the direction to the drummer for the rest of the piece is to use brushes. If I ever talk to a "real" drummer about this, perhaps I can figure out a better way to notate this situation.

Again, I have modified note attacks and durations for a more natural feel as described in:

As an afterthought, I have added an MP3 file of what this arrangement sounds like on my Clavinova -- quite a bit different than General Midi sounds.

Ralph Rayner
Attached Files
File Type: not Harlem Nocturne.not (145.8 KB, 30 views)
File Type: mp3 Harlem Nocturne.mp3 (1.98 MB, 20 views)

Last edited by rrayner; 03-17-2014 at 02:00 PM. Reason: addendum
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