Transcriptions: Milestones by Christiaan 'Niliov' van Hemert

Some people have literally begged me for some more pianotrio-transcriptions. Someone even was bold enough to suggest creating a separate section called: "Pianotrio-transcription-of-the-week-series". Well, I don't know about that!! (How much would you pay me, Rico :)) Just to show I'm not such a bad guy, here's another one for all the piano-trio fans out there: "Milestones" from the Ray Brown-trio CD "Bass Face". If you thought they only could play grooving blueses and "Oscar Peterson-style tunes" you thought wrong. Benny Green again shows his craftmanship playing this modal song like he's never done anything else, wow!!!

First the introduction, the theme and the interlude:

The mysterious introduction is perfect to get the audience prepared for something modal. The chords are all fourth-voicings. The bass just plays the bottom note of the voicings. The theme is very cleverly arranged with a kind of a C-pedal thing going on in the left hand of the piano which prepares you for the upcoming FminMaj7 chord (in the improvisation a Fmaj7). The melody in the bridge is voiced with fourth-voicings and the bass and drums play a shifting rhythmic pattern; listen to the record to hear what I mean! The interlude is actually the same as the introduction enhanced with a modulation and a F#7 at the end to create the feeling of wideness suited for a modal tune.

The special:

This is what I like in the Ray Brown-trio. Every special they play in different songs fit the style and mood of the song! This special is no exception: a perfect special for a modal song. Listen carefully for the dynamics they use and the tension they create with clusters and Jeff Hamiltons flawless fills.

Benny Green again improvises (in octaves!) again and picks up the melody at the bridge. There are some minor varations in the end-theme, but you can listen for them yourself or just play the same as in the beginning. I did however transcribe the outtro:

At first glance the outtro appears to be the same as the intro. There are however some octave-displacements. This changes the sound of the outtro compared to the intro (the different drum-fills help too). Well, that's it. Play and enjoy!!

©1998 Christiaan 'Niliov' van Hemert. JRC.  JAZZ RESOURCE CENTER