"Buckjump" - Trombone Shorty

"Buckjump" (PDF) from the Trombone Shorty album, For True.
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Here we go with a new batch of Trombone Shorty solos.  This is the opening track from the For True album, and features the Rebirth Brass Band.  As an example of contemporary New Orleans music, this track combines the traditional brass band sound with modern electronic beats and rhythms.

The tune takes place in the key of D minor, using minor pentatonic riffs toassemble the melodies.  Because there are at least eight horn players on this track, I'm sure that there are some horn parts buried in the mix that I wasn't able to hear and notate.  But notice how, with all the different riffs being played, they still create space so that the other melodies can be heard.  This style of call and response allows the melodies to overlap each other in a contrapuntal manner.

The solo makes use of the D harmonic minor scale, with the raised 6th (B) and 7th (C#) ascending, and lowered 6th (Bb) and 7th (C) descending.  This scale puts the emphasis on the half-step neighbors of the chord tones, embellishments used to create slight melodic tension.  But also notice how this chromaticism spices up the limited range of the solo.  For the most part, the solo only covers one octave (maybe an octave and a half).  In addition, Shorty's four-bar phrases help mold his ideas into clear statements.

I couldn't find a video of this tune yet, but I did a search for the term "buckjump" instead.  So here's a YouTube video of "that crazy new dance all the kids are doing these days."

Recommended Reading: Back to School for Grown-Ups: Everything You Should Have Learned in Class by Stephen Evans and Ian Whitelaw.  Published by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.