Repertoire Spotlight on Jazz for Jazz Appreciation Month

Repertoire Spotlight on Jazz Band for Jazz Appreciation Month

This month we added 25 new ensemble titles to the SmartMusic Repertoire Library. Included are new pieces for choir, concert band, string orchestra, and seven pieces for jazz band. View the complete list here.  

As part of our celebration of Jazz Appreciation Month we’ll focus on one of those pieces, Vince Gassi’s arrangement of Louis Prima’s classic Sing, Sing, Sing, which was immortalized by Benny Goodman’s 1938 Carnegie Hall performance.

Free Ebook: The Big Band Director’s Toolkit

Free Ebook: The Big Band Directors Toolkit

There’s nothing little about a big band, from the huge sound to the amount of work and expertise it takes to successfully direct one. We’ve compiled tips from experienced jazz educators from across the country to help big band directors everywhere.

They share their experience on jazz conducting, teaching swing, and what jazz festival judges want to hear.

Help Drummers Get to the Heart of Swing

Help Drummers Get to the Heart of Swing

Here’s a clear, stripped-down approach you can use to quickly and effectively get your drum students “swinging” without overloading them with excessive technical baggage.

What Is the Role of a Jazz Drummer?

For the first half century of its existence, jazz was a form of pop music designed to make people dance.

Get More Out of Your Jazz Band Rehearsal: Warm Up Chops and Ears

Get More Out of Your Jazz Band Rehearsal: Warm Up Chops and Ears

Any large ensemble director can relate to the feeling of having too much to do, and not enough time. Productive rehearsals require precise lesson planning. It can often be a challenge to touch on all the “problem spots.” In a large jazz ensemble, the director then has to attempt to make time to address improvisation, or hope that this is being thoroughly addressed in private study.

5 Quick Fixes for Young Jazz Trombonists

5 Quick Fixes for Young Jazz Trombonists

Having a strong trombone section can take your big band to the next level. It’s tempting to focus on the shout chorus and the sax soli and leave the trombones to their own devices, but a few simple adjustments can bring your young jazz trombonists up a notch, and add power, balance, and consistency to your horn section.

Matching Students to Instruments: The Instrument Selection Process

Matching Students to Instruments: The Instrument Selection Process

One of the most exciting and important events in the life of a prospective band student is when he or she selects the instrument they are going to play. There are many factors that influence a student’s decision such as the availability of an instrument. These include the popularity of an instrument, parental preference, peer pressure, perceived musical opportunities, and band director needs and suggestions.

Music Educator Spotlight on Chris Gleason

Music Educator Spotlight on Chris Gleason

Today we’d like to recognize Chris Gleason, the 2016-2017 Wisconsin Middle School Teacher of the Year, a national semifinalist for the 2017 Grammy Music Educator Award, and the only music educator among the four finalists for the National Teacher of the Year Award.

Those are just a few of the recent accolades Chris has received.