Here’s a tune I think more people should know.
I played this song on a gig recently, but the lead sheet the bandleader gave me had only the melody and a few wrong chords. The drummer and I had to improvise our own accompaniment based on dim memories of Wayne Shorter’s version on Native Dancer. Milton Nascimento’s lovely melody has been stuck in my head since then, so I spent some time getting to know it better. This chart also leaves some things out (e.g. the acoustic piano part), but it gives a better idea what the band is doing.
Back in March I posted the Branford Marsalis solo on “When Will the Blues Leave” from Kenny Kirkland’s eponymous album. I also transcribed Charnett Moffett’s bass accompaniment, but never got around to putting it up on the blog. Kenny leaves a lot of space in his comping for sax and bass to take the song to harmonically new places, and Branford takes advantage by spending a good amount of time in ambiguous diminished territory, but Charnett plays a pretty straight blues in F, offering occasional chromatic digressions to heighten tension.
Here are both solo and bassline together, for reference:
September 1st is always a strange day in Boston. Many residents will find any excuse to be out of town that day. People of all ages and occupations take impromptu vacations, or call in sick to work, or pack into overcrowded trains rather than commute by car. Police are out in force all over the city. There’s a tension that hangs in the air like caustic smoke.
September 1st is the day that a large proportion of Boston’s 200,000 college students move from one apartment to another. It almost seems like the city is turning itself inside out. From dawn until well after midnight, hallways and stairwells teem with people carrying clothes and furniture. The streets are dammed by double- and triple-parked vehicles. Every year a handful of inexperienced movers manage to get their moving trucks hopelessly wedged in narrow alleyways and under low bridges. The city’s labyrinthine road system traps unsuspecting drivers in a Gordian traffic knot. Commerce and transportation grind to a halt. Nerves fray. Fists fly over parking spots and fender benders.
I like to stay home and read a book on September 1st. If I want a taste of chaos, I just listen to Ornette and Prime Time.