Welcome to Checkered Van: Russell Scarbrough's Blog.

Return to Russell Scarbrough's Home Page

Monday, December 10, 2012

Blue Bossa Big Band Chart

My good friend Dr. Sean Reed has posted a couple of short videos from his band's recent performance of Blue Bossa at Arkansas Tech University. I wrote this arrangement several years ago for the Roberts Wesleyan College Jazz Ensemble but have never managed to get a good recording of the piece, so I'm grateful to Sean for posting this performance.


Monday, December 3, 2012

Ebon Echoes, midi preview

clarinet
And here's another midi demo of a swing ballad for big band with clarinet solo, called Ebon Echoes. It was commissioned by the Hilton High School Jazz Ensemble in Hilton, NY, and will be premiered in February 2013 on their annual "Day of Jazz" concert.

"Ebon" is, of course, a poetic way of saying "ebony", which is traditionally the name for the kind of wood from which the clarinet is made (more accurately, African Blackwood or Grenadilla).

Monday, November 26, 2012

Skies Over Fairport, midi preview

Here's the midi rendering of a new piece composed for TWO big bands performing together: the Fairport High School Jazz Ensemble and the SOUL-JAZZ Big Band.

We'll be premiering this on February 8, 2013 in the Minerva Deland Middle School auditorium in Fairport, NY. This is the first of three consecutive premieres I'm having in February, two of which are jazz ensemble works.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Upcoming Commissioned Works for 2013

I'm excited to announce several commissioned pieces I'm currently working on that will be premiered in 2013... which is already shaping up to be a busy year! New music for chamber ensembles and even a few jazz pieces (!) are in the works.


• New Work for two jazz ensembles: Premiere by the Fairport High School Jazz Ensemble and the Soul-Jazz Big Band, February 8, 2013

• New Work for jazz ensemble: Premiere by the Hilton High School Jazz Ensemble, February 15, 2013

• New Work for violin & piano: Premiere by the Irrera Brothers, Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall, February 22, 2013

• New Work for euphonium & piano: Premiere by Mark Kellogg & Joseph Werner, ITEA Northeast Regional conference, Ithaca College, April 19, 2013

• New Work for low flute choir & electronics: Premiere by Peter Sheridan and flute choir, Fall 2013


Friday, September 21, 2012

Flute and Clarinet Duo: Cylindrical Sea

This work was premiered at the 2012 National Flute Convention in Las Vegas.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Upcoming performances, Fall 2012

score paper
Already the summer's over, and a new year of music is underway. I have a number of performances of my music coming up around the country:

September 24: American Jazz Composers Orchestra, at The Grease Monkey, in Arlington, Texas. Performing my arrangement of Dexter Gordon's Cheesecake.

October 7: Sal Lozano Faculty Recital, at Cal State Long Beach. Premiering my quartet for doubling woodwinds, Areté.

October 15: U.S. Naval Academy Next Wave Jazz Ensemble, at Bishop McNamara High School in Forestville, MD. Performing my arrangement of Dexter Gordon's Cheesecake.

October 18: Directing the Roberts Wesleyan College Jazz Ensemble at B.T.'s Cafe, performing several original works.

October 19: Buffalo State Jazz Ensemble with soloist Clay Jenkins. Performing my arrangement of Clay's tune Tray-Bo.

October 21: The Santa Rosa Symphony with the Four Freshmen, at the Wells Fargo Center for the Arts in Santa Rosa, California. Performing my arrangement of Killer Joe.

October 22: American Jazz Composers Orchestra, at The Grease Monkey, in Arlington, Texas. Performing my arrangement of Dexter Gordon's Cheesecake.

November 9: Dickinson College Jazz Ensemble, Carlisle PA, performing new arrangements of Strange Fruit and Fela Kuti's Zombie on their "Sounding Political" concert.

November 10: The Columbus Symphony with The Fab Four, at the Ohio Theatre in Columbus, Ohio. Performing my arrangement of Killer Joe.

November 10: ensemble.twenty.21 performs Cylindrical Sea at the Rochester Flute Association's annual Flute Fair, Pittsford NY.

Pictures At An Exhibition
November 15: Directing the Roberts Wesleyan College Jazz Ensemble with guest artist Charles Pillow, performing big band arrangements from his Pictures At An Exhibition album.

November 29: Columbus State University Jazz Band with soloist Clay Jenkins. Performing my arrangement of Clay's tune Tray-Bo, Columbus GA.

November 30: Directing the Roberts Wesleyan College Jazz Ensemble at the NYSSMA Conference, performing Pictures At An Exhibition.

November 30: Arkansas Tech University Jazz Ensemble, performing my arrangement of Blue Bossa, Russellville, AR.

December 5: Western Illinois University Jazz Band, performing my arrangement of Blue Bossa, Macomb, IL.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Big Band chart: Cheesecake

My arrangement of Dexter Gordon's Cheesecake, as performed by the Eastman Jazz Ensemble.
View the score here.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Upcoming Premieres

Upcoming premieres and other performances:

June 27, "Splode" - SOUL-JAZZ Big Band, XRIJF Rochester NY
July 13, "Crystalline Calls" for flute choir - RFA/Hochstein Flute Camp, Rochester NY
August 10, "Cylindrical Sea" for flute & clarinet - National Flute Convention, Las Vegas
Fall (date TBD), "Areté" for Reed Quartet - Cal State Long Beach, CA
November 10, "Cylindrical Sea" for flute & clarinet -Rochester Flute Association Flute Fair

Friday, June 8, 2012

SOUL-JAZZ Big Band at XRIJF: June 27

My 12-piece ensemble, "Russell Scarbrough's SOUL-JAZZ Big Band", is appearing at the Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival on Wednesday, June 27. We're playing two sets, at 7pm and 9pm, on the RG&E Fusion Stage at the corner of Chestnut and East Ave. in the heart of downtown Rochester. That's a great venue and always a good time in that location. And it's FREE! No ticket or club pass is required, just come right in.

We're premiering a new original composition at the festival: SPLODE, which I wrote this spring specifically for the SJBB to play on this performance. It will feature Nikola Tomic on flugëlhorn and all of our saxophonists: Bill Tiberio, Ethan Helm, Casey MacFarlane, and Dean Keller.

We'll also be playing a couple of new arrangements of soul standards, as well as many of our usual high-energy favorites. Chestnut & East will be hoppin, come on out!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Online Composition/Arranging Lessons on Skype!


I am now accepting students at all levels for Jazz Composition & Arranging lessons online via Skype.

I have a special offer of $25 for a first-time-only introductory lesson for 30 minutes, and I can accept payment with credit cards through PayPal.

Tech requirements for students:
Computer with high-speed internet access
Web Cam with microphone
Skype software (free version)
Adobe Acrobat reader (or the equivalent) for pdf files
Music notation software or scanner to upload written assignments

I can accept Finale or Sibelius, music xml, or pdf files. If your music is hand written, I can accept a high-resolution scan of your work (b/w, 300 dpi).

Interested students should click here.