On September 15, 2017, I began my journey of transcribing my favorite tune from Joe Pass, arguably the greatest jazz guitarist ever (he is to me). Little did I know that I’d be done with it 5 weeks later on October 22, 2017, though I really only worked on it for about 3 of those weeks. This is one of the pinnacles of my work in jazz studies and I am very proud to present this transcription here. Before undergoing this transcription, I searched and searched on the internet for someone else’s transcription of the tune but just couldn’t find anything from Virtuoso Live!, let alone “Stompin’ at the Savoy.” As such, I think that this is the first ever available transcription of the tune. It is yours to enjoy and learn it with me.
Above (top) is a video that my friend and Old Testament professor, Dr. Lawson Stone, took of me performing the tune. Please excuse the mistakes throughout as I’m only into day two of practicing the whole song. In a week or two, I’ll probably have the whole piece under my fingers a little better, flowing a bit more with a faster tempo. Many thanks to Dr. Stone for inviting me to play with him and his guitars!
Below the video is the link to the PDF transcription. Enjoy!
A few months ago, I wrote lyrics to one of Pat Metheny’s (jazz guitarist and composer) most loved songs entitled “Last Train Home.” These lyrics came to me as I was praying for and grieving the loss of my friend’s (Todd Adams) mother (Sharon Adams). This season in the life of my family has been one of grief as we lost my beloved mother-in-law Tammy Booth to cancer last November. During this time, we have experienced both tremendous grief and yet great comfort from the Lord Jesus. This arrangement of “Last Train Home” is for the comfort of those who have lost loved one’s in the Lord, and a call for those who do not yet know the Lord to not “miss the last train home,” that is, “heaven” – the new heavens and the new earth (Revelation 21-22). “Who would ever say no to this? It’s free, a gift for eternal bliss.”
Sounds so sweet, thank the Lord above
He paid my way with his endless love
To hear his voice, to see
His face…what joy ’twill be
It’s one way, all aboard
The last train home Verse 2
Heavenward is his call for you
For me and all of the world too
He died and rose to save
He made…a way, it’s true
His love’s for you
Don’t miss the last train home
It waits for you Bridge
Many have gone there
They’ve gone before us
We miss them every day, Oh
But we will join them soon Verse 3
Who would ever say no to this?
It’s free, a gift, for eternal bliss
Repent, believe, and love
The Lord…with all your heart,
Soul, mind, and strength
The last call, all aboard (3x)
The last train home
Just letting everyone know that Webster’s Definition of Jazz will be playing this Friday, May 1, 2015 at the Wilmore United Methodist Church from 8:00pm-10:00pm. This is a public event offering for swing dance lessons with a live jazz combo. Admission is $8. There will be a tip jar for the band. We are basically playing for free.
Dave Webster on Saxophone
Larry Crawford on Piano
Timothy Christian on Bass
Here is a song we recorded from a gig not long ago. If you like, come hear us on Friday!
Today on this snow day, I recorded one of my favorite tunes composed by the saxophonist John Coltrane: Moment’s Notice. If you want to hear his original recording, click here to listen from his 1957 Blue Note album entitled “Blue Train.” In comparison, my rendition takes the tempo up a little more (260 bpm) and only features a solo on the piano. Mine is also 3 minutes 22 seconds, whereas his is 9 minutes 10 seconds. A point of trivia is that Coltrane never recorded “Moment’s Notice” again after this album.
As another fun piece of trivia, this is actually the first recording that I have done with my new electric upright bass – the NS Design NXT4. So that’s exciting for me!
I hope you enjoy this beautiful song that Coltrane graced us with.
Now is that a mouth full or what? For over ten years since my high school days – yes it scares me that my ten year reunion is rapidly approaching – I have been playing upright bass, the colloquial name for the double bass. One of the biggest obstacles to me playing upright, however, has been the fact that I have never owned one. This is a quite a pickle I’ve been in: upright bass is one of my favorite instruments to play, yet I do not have one. So throughout these years I have borrowed them to practice from my high school and then at WIU in college, but for the majority of the time I have gone without, doomed to the confinement of my electric bass (boring!).
So as you can imagine, I have been pestering Paige for our nearly six years of marriage to purchase an upright bass, and she has been generous to me throughout assuring me that one day we’ll be able to buy one. And wouldn’t you know it, but that day is today! About a week ago I bought this NS Design bass used for nearly half-off their $1600 price tags, and it finally came in the mail this afternoon.
So I would like to say thank you to my precious and beloved wife for finally giving in to my pathetic begging and pleading for my favorite instrument on the planet all these years! Sweety, you are the best! And I’d also like to say to all of you reading this to enjoy listening to a few of my first notes on my new EUB (Electric Upright Bass), but don’t mind my poor intonation; that’ll come after some more practice.
For those of you who were unable to make the jazz event at NewDay Community Church in Versailles on October 18, we recorded the music for your listening pleasure. And for those who did make it, don’t worry you can relive with great nostalgia Jazz on Main 2014. Thanks to all who came out and supported us and all those who were there in spirit.
Au Privave, Autumn Leaves, Summertime, The Girl from Ipanema, and Blue Monk are jazz standard, while “How To Trane A Monk” (Track 3) is an original composition of mine. We hope you enjoy the music and experience the Triune God who created such a brilliant and complex genre of music.
Timothy Christian – Trumpet, Guitar, Keyboard (Organ/Flute)
For a limited time, I am offering the opportunity to listen for FREE to my full album entitled “A New Standard” where I have composed six tunes that were all inspired by jazz standards and thus they are in a sense “new standards.” I have recorded all of the instruments myself – trumpet, trombone, guitar, piano, bass, drums – and also mixed and mastered the entire album myself.
I dedicate this album to the amazing music educators in my life: Mr. Joe Roman, Mr. Kevin Reavis, Mr. Dennis Stremmel, Dr. John Cooper, and Dr. Michael Stryker. You all have taught and inspired me so much in music. This is for you!
Please feel free to give me feedback, share, and comment. Happy listening!
1. Already, Not Yet
This tune is a musical expression of an eschatological (end-time) truth about the Kingdom of God – the “already/not yet.” Twentieth century theologian, George Eldon Ladd, coined the term “already, not yet” which in a nutshell says that God’s Kingdom is already here in the present because of the work of Christ and the Holy Spirit, but not yet here in its fullness. It is believed that the fullness of the Kingdom of God will come when Christ returns at his Second Coming. Then, the “not yet” will be no more and as Paul would say, “God will be all in all” (1 Cor 15).
So I have depicted this musically as a standard 12 bar blues tune that alternates between a minor blues and a major blues. The minor blues is the “not yet” portion and the major blues is the “already” portion. These go back and forth giving a sense of tension. You don’t know which it is. Is it minor (not yet) or is it major (already)? The point of the song is to show that the present time (the time between Jesus’ first coming and second coming) is one of tension, where God’s Kingdom is already here, but not yet here in all its glory. Below are the lyrics:
It’s already here! It’s not here yet! It’s already here! It’s not yet here!
It’s already here! It’s not here yet! It’s already here! It’s not yet here!
Lo! the Kingdom – Glory Hallelujah – is not yet!
Lo! the Kingdom – Glory Hallelujah – ‘s already!
Already, but not yet
We’re living in the tension
It’s already here, but not yet here!
I wrote “How To Trane A Monk” over two years ago back in 2012. It models the styles and compositions of John “Trane” Coltrane (tenor sax) and Thelonious Monk (piano) when they played together in the mid- to late 1950’s. Now as a theology student, I love puns and the title is indeed a play on words about training (Trane-ing) monks (Thelonious Monk). The lyrics which go with the melody are as follows:
“You take a little bit of this; you take a little bit of that; you put it all together and then, that’s how to Trane a Monk!”
Also, I have recorded all of the instruments and mixed the audio myself. The instruments recorded are trumpet, trombone, piano, bass, and drums.
See Monk and Coltrane’s tune “Bye-Ya” on youtube to see one of their songs in particular that inspired “How To Trane A Monk.”
This is the first of several solo jazz guitar tunes I have recorded for the Summer of 2014. I have called it “Them Blues Be Flat” which is a play on words because the song is (1) a blues tune and (2) in the key of B flat.