Showing posts with label trumpet. Show all posts
Showing posts with label trumpet. Show all posts

Friday, December 13, 2019

Backstage Virtuoso Improv - St. James Infirmary

Not long ago friend Michael Ward-Bergeman, renowned accordionist and composer, sent me a clip in which he and celebrated jazz trumpeter Dominick Farinacci, sitting backstage, were caught riffing off St. James Infirmary ... you know the song?

I wrote to Ward-Bergeman, and asked how this came about:

"Dominick Farinacci is a virtuoso jazz trumpeter that  I have been working with off and on for about a decade. Our most recent collaboration has been a sonata for poets and jazz ensemble titled 'Life and Loves,' produced by the Catskill Jazz Factory. We premiered an early version of this in London last spring.

"When Dominick first got in touch about the project he sent a draft program. It was a bit of a shock to see St. James Infirmary on there."

Ward-Bergeman has had a long association with St. James Infirmary. He has performed the song with Gypsy/Roma bands (featuring members of Taraf de Haiduks), with Yo Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble (including Rhiannon Giddens on vocals, Reylon Yount on yangqin), and has performed it, or variations of it, with a number of renowned chamber groups, roots bands, and so on.

"I said to myself " Ward-Bergeman continued, "'I can't escape this song!!'

"In London, Dominick and I worked with another collaborator, multi-instrumentalist Christian Tamburr, in putting the set together and arranging the songs.  We were arranging for a jazz singer and an opera singer.  Someone had the bright idea to mashup St. James Infirmary sung by the jazz singer with the violent Mack the Knife (with German lyrics) sung by the opera singer.  We pulled this off in one arrangement that was a highlight of the London performances.  There are some big things planned for this project over the next couple years.

"Dominick recently invited me to perform with him alongside some of his other collaborators in Easton, MD.  It was a show produced by "Jazz on the Chesapeake."  The program was a kind of 'best of" of the many projects Dominick has been working on over the past few years.

"About a half hour before show time he asked if we could do St. James Infirmary as a duo.  Cool!  After the show we were still messing around with the tune backstage and someone caught a bit on camera.

"Here it is."

(Double-click to get the full image via YouTube)

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Sheet music for second trumpet

A reader let me know that, in posting the 1929 orchestral score for St. James Infirmary, I had neglected to include the part for second trumpet.

This score, probably the first published orchestration, included parts for piano, alto sax, bass, trumpet, drums, violin. trombone, banjo. You can find the other sheets scattered through this blog (search "sheet music").

Selling for 50 cents, the score was arranged by famed banjoist Fred Van Eps, and published by Gotham Music Service, an arm of Mills Music, Inc. Mills Music was co-owned by Jack and Irving Mills. Irving Mills was Joe Primrose, who didn't write the song.

Clicking on the image should enlarge it.

Monday, April 23, 2012

More sheet music for St. James Infirmary: drums, banjo, piano, trumpet

By a very long margin, the most popular posts on this site are the ones that offer the sheet music for "St. James Infirmary." From what I can tell, these visits are increasing in frequency; perhaps this reflects a corresponding increase of interest in this song?

The first music I posted from the orchestral arrangement was the piano score. The only other sheet music for "St. James Infirmary" that I have so far posted, the trumpet music, is the second most popular item.

I doubt many of the people who visit this site to download the music stay to contemplate the history of the song - which, of course, is what this blog is all about. But that's okay. Since this is the first orchestral score that was published for SJI, just by looking at the sheet music you are gazing into the past, into the early days of the song's commercial popularity.

The sheet music I have posted comes from an orchestral score published in 1929 by Gotham Music Service, Inc., a branch of Mills Music. After all the arguments have been exhausted, Mills Music was primarily responsible for popularizing this song and ensuring its survival. The arrangement of the score is attributed to the legendary banjoist Fred Van Eps (1878 - 1960).

Aside from the piano music and the trumpet music, I have scanned (but not yet posted) the sheets for bass, drums, banjo, saxophone, trombone, and violin. So, for all those who are looking for the sheet music I have already posted, you can click to find the piano sheet music or the trumpet sheet music.

I shall post other music sheets later. To start, here is the banjo music sheet:

And here is the drum music from that 1929 score (clicking on the sheets should give you a larger version):

Friday, November 14, 2008

St. James Infirmary trumpet sheet music

The page of sheet music you see here was scanned from a 1929 orchestral score, published by Gotham Music Service Inc., sole selling agents for Mills Music, Inc., 148-150 W. 46th St., N.Y.C.

Clicking on the image should give you a larger, readable version of the page.

This particular score was almost certainly used by an orchestra of the period. An instruction pencilled in at the bottom of the page tells the player when to "stand up" during the performance.

In this orchestral score, music is included for drums, piano, 1st and 3rd alto saxophones, 2nd tenor saxophone, violin, trombone, 1st and 2nd trumpet, tenor banjo, bass, and 1st violin. The price for the entire score was 50 cents.
Inquiries into the early years of SJI