"Feelin'" - Big Sam's Funky Nation

"Feelin'" (PDF) from the Big Sam's Funky Nation album, Peace, Love & Understanding.
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Here are just a few things to consider about this jam, and I use the term jam since the melody seems to consist only of rhythm.  The trombone solo is based around the F blues scale, or simply the F minor pentatonic, and it is the Ab, the minor third, that creates the harmonic rub against the 9th (G) in the chord.  It is also what creates the attitude in this solo.

When looking at the overall shape to this the trombone solo, notice how it begins way up high and gradually descends down an octave.  This appears to be a case of "jumping the gun," where all the excitement is at the top and the energy is not sustained throughout the solo.  If you are going to punch the audience in the face, either hit it and quit, or do not let down your attack by slowly backing away.

The dip in energy may be a result of an undetermined length for the solo section.  In most structured tunes, a solo is usually in the form of eight bars or sixteen bars.  That is usually a fitting length within a tune.  Here, however, Big Sam solos for twenty-four bars which has an odd feeling to it.  Our ears feel like it is an uneven phrasing.  So be aware of where your solo is going.  Practice building your phrases around eight or sixteen bars to build momentum in your solo, rather than noodling around on your horn until the energy fizzles out and you bore your audience.  Punch 'em in the face, instead.

Here's a YouTube video of Big Sam from last week.  It sounds like they've been bumpin' the James Brown recently.

Recommended Reading: Cosmos by Carl Sagan.  Published by Random House.