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Clarinet Etudes

  Clarinet Etudes
The following études offer the clarinetist arrangements of jazz and pop standards that explore the full range of notes (over 3.5 octaves) and tone colours (sub tone through brilliant) unique to the clarinet.  All études can be watched on YouTube and played/read from PDF transcripts accessed from the links below. The demo-videos use a metronome accompaniment with a backbeat pulse on 2 and 4.

 

Shenandoah
Old traditional tune arranged by Keith Loach featuring Eric MacKeracher on piano and Keith Loach on clarinet performing at Kingston Road United Church in Toronto, Ontario, on December 3, 2017.
YouTube demo:
https://youtu.be/432xNoqyoD0
PDF transcript:
http://www.bitstudio.ca/PDF/Shenandoah.pdf

 

Ain’t No Mountain Etude
Written by Nickolas Ashford & Valerie Simpson in 1966, this arrangement is a lift from the Marvin Gaye/Tammi Terrell recording from 1967. The chord changes in this tune are fantastic and the challenge was voicing them to be heard against the simple pop melody. The etude covers three octaves and has some tricky, key of E, bridge fingerings.
YouTube demo:
https://youtu.be/J9vzSzvuQn0
PDF transcript:
http://www.bitstudio.ca/PDF/AintNoMountainEtude.pdf

 

Donna Lee Etude
By Charlie Parker, bebop, 1/4 note=192.  This arrangement is a tip-of-the-hat to Jaco Pastorius’ 1977 solo bass recording with conga. The étude features some classic and standard jazz colours and licks.
YouTube demo:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCHICxC7Qys
PDF transcript:
http://www.bitstudio.ca/PDF/DonnaLeeEtude.pdf

 

Here’s That Rainy Day Etude
By Jim van Heusen, ballad, 1/4 note=90.  The clarinet is capable of producing a wide range of different sounds. Here’s That Rainy Day (1953) is a sub tone exercise in the chalumeau register and uses accents and/or tenuto to emphasize the melody over arpeggiated jazz chords.
YouTube demo:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ATK_MRHsVnA
PDF transcript:
http://www.bitstudio.ca/PDF/HeresThatRainyDayEtude.pdf

 

There Will Never Be Another You Etude
By Harry Warren, hard swing, 1/4 note=215.  Written in 1942, the work is a classic from the swing era. The arrangement uses diminished scales and references the finale of the Copland Clarinet Concerto with a glissando to high D.
YouTube demo:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wc9_D5uKHJc
PDF transcript:
http://www.bitstudio.ca/PDF/ThereWillNeverBeEtude.pdf

 

Attitudes – by Gary Kulesha
Attitudes for Clarinet and Piano was written in a few weeks during January and February of 1980 for the 4th year recital of Keith Loach. It premiered on March 3, 1980, in Walter Hall at the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto.
“The work is in three movements, Fast-Slow-Fast. The main feature of the piece is rhythm, which is exploited in many ways. Although there is virtually no deviation from a 4/4 time signature, there is in fact almost no 4/4 time in the piece, most of it being written with different metres happening in the clarinet and piano parts simultaneously. The result is like an aural version of an optical illusion, with phrases which should work together slightly sidestepping each other. The second movement, which in performance should sound rubato, is in fact a tightly-controlled study in additive rhythm, that is, the phrases and motives appear and reappear in original and inverted forms with note-values as small as 32nd notes added or subtracted. The finale is a showpiece for both instruments, featuring scaling passages.”
Gary Kulesha – http://www.kulesha.com/
YouTube demo:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1aOMCEd1DwQ

 

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