Kenny Garrett – Amandla

Well, I didn’t finish off this album in 2015 like I had hoped, but maybe with a little luck I’ll finish it in January of 2016!

Believe it or not, this is probably one of the hardest solo transcriptions I’ve ever done. Much of the track has a ‘half-time’ feel that floats. There’s nothing to grab on to, but the time is there – rock solid. It’s a brilliant arrangement!

This is one of those situations where you don’t really appreciate the track until you transcribe it and really have to dig in to what’s going on. The changes on this song are so beautiful, and the feel that is created by the rhythm section is so amazing.

I did my best to capture what I felt was going on time-wise, but I’m sure others might have a different interpretation. If so, I’d love to hear it! For a change, my performance of the solo was based more on feel than on reading the rhythms strictly (and I still didn’t get close enough for my taste).

But check this track out – Kenny’s playing is amazing, with some beautiful lines and rhythms. The PDF starts with his main solo, and continues through the end of the track. After the piano solo, he fills in around the melody as Miles plays, and then trades with Miles as the tune rides out. can you imagine trading with Miles Davis??

Kenny Garrett - Amandla




P.S. My first post with the new Alto mouthpiece!

Kenny Garrett – Big Time

Another great Kenny Garrett solo from Amandla. Actually, there are two solos in this track, so be sure to keep watching the video after the first fade. The solos are split across two pages in the PDF.

I think there’s only one or two more Kenny Garrett solos on this album, I’ll shoot to get the rest done before the end of the year.

Kenny Garrett - Big Time




Kenny Garrett – Jo-Jo

More Kenny Garrett! I love his playing on this album, even though the solos are so short. I’ll have to double-check the chords on this one. I pulled them from a lead sheet, but Kenny seems to be consistently playing major 3rds against the C minor. Even a major 7th and sharp 4. I wish I had a better ear for chords!

Kenny Garrett - Jo-Jo




Kenny Garrett – Jilli

I love me some Kenny Garrett! He’s probably my favorite jazz Alto player on the scene today. It’s like Maceo Parker and John Coltrane had a musical baby.

Kenny has a beautiful, bright, clear sound with a very percussive attack, much like Maceo, but he generally plays music that is much more harmonically and technically complex (which you’d expect given their respective genres).

This is an especially interesting track because it shows Kenny playing over a one-chord funk/fusion groove. I love how he plays with the major seventh in the 4th and 5th bars. He really doesn’t stray too far from the blues scale, but when he does, the alterations really pop.

I think that I’ve got most of Kenny’s solos from this period with Miles transcribed, so I’ll be working them into the mix over the next couple months.

Kenny Garrett - Jilli