Saturday, April 23, 2022

Transcription: Kenny Clarke - Swing to Bop

Kenny Clarke playing brushes on Swing To Bop, from the album The Immortal Charlie Christian. This was recorded live at Minton's Playhouse in 1941— epicenter of the formation of bebop. We're hearing a strong quarter note groove, with Clarke making some big angular jabs with the snare drum and bass drum.

The track begins during Christian's solo, in the last ten beats of the first A section. I've included double bars every 8 bars after that. I wrote out two pages of it and stopped when it was time to make breakfast. 

The only things audible from the drums are snare drum and bass drum. There is a cymbal present, and hihat, that we hear later in the recording— at times it sounds he may be playing the hihat with the foot, but mics barely register it. For all I know it wasn't even a standard thing to do yet. You can assume that he's feathering the bass drum throughout this— I've written it in any place it's actually audible. Assume the stickings of most running 8th notes follow a RLRR-RLRR pattern— a swing pattern with the left hand in the gap. 

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1 comment:

Michael Griener said...

Thanks. Coincidentally, those Charlie Christian records are the only thing I've listened to in the last few weeks.
That stuff is still unmatched as far as I'm concerned.