Hal Leonard Play Alongs

Chris98

Senior Member
Messages
1,076
I've just got Vol. 35 Bluesy Jazz, and made a start on the first track "Angels Eyes" which is rather nice and bluesy. I noticed Pete recommended the book on his main site and although I think it's going to be a bit challenging with the improvisation I like what I've heard so far and keen to give it ago, the backing tracks are really good as well.

The other thing is that the book has notation for C Treble, Bb, Eb & C bass instruments so one book and CD has you covered whatever you choose to play.

Does anyone know if all the Hal Leonard Play Alongs have good quality backing tacks and are there any other titles in the series you'd recommend?

All the best,

Chris
 
Last edited by a moderator:

AndyB

Member
Messages
210
Location
Durham, NC, USA
Hi Chris. I would say that the Hal Leonard recorded backing tracks far exceed the Aebersold. I have these volumes and really enjoy them much more than any of the Aebersold volumes that I have:

Swing Favorites - Alto Sax
Jazz & Blues - Alto Sax
Jazz & Blues - Tenor Sax
Motown Hits: Jazz Play-Along Volume 85 (C, Bb and Eb)
Ray - Music from the Motion Picture Soundtrack (C, Bb and Eb)

Jazz & Blues contains a written solo part that is really good until you can improvise your own. The written solos are very interesting too. Jazz & Blues is my favorite playalong of any series so I ended up buying both tenor and alto volumes (same backing tracks). Unlike other volumes I've seen, the alto sax part is not just a modified tenor score. The swing favorites book is more like the alto sax replacing the clarinet in a swing band on the melody part and very nicely done. The Ray Charles and Motown are lots of fun to play but often not in the original keys.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
OP
Chris98

Chris98

Senior Member
Messages
1,076
Hi Andy,

thanks for the suggestion, I'll have a look at "Jazz & Blues".

I'd not realised how big the "Jazz Play Along" series is, there are are 104 titles!

Best wishes,

Chris
 

c9off

Senior Member
Messages
607
Location
London SE/Kent & Rickinghall
Hi Chris

I bought the smooth jazz book following a track This Masquerade on Crazydaisydoo's Youtube page (he uses HL so you can hear for yourself what the backing tracks are like..)

cheers
Geoff
 
OP
Chris98

Chris98

Senior Member
Messages
1,076
Hi Chris

I bought the smooth jazz book following a track This Masquerade on Crazydaisydoo's Youtube page (he uses HL so you can hear for yourself what the backing tracks are like..)

cheers
Geoff
Hi Geoff,

I noticed the 'Smooth Jazz' book and have to say I am a little tempted, although I wasn't sure I was going to admit to it! I'll have a wander over to Crazydaisydoo's YouTube page and have a listen.

All the best,

Chris
 

DaveW

Member
Messages
163
Location
Stockport, Cheshire

half diminished

Senior Member
Messages
1,361
Location
Buckinghamshire
I use these and they are brilliant.

I have:

  • No 2 Miles Davis
  • No 3 The Blues
  • No 6 Jazz Classics
  • No 10 Disney Classics
  • No 13 John Coltrane
  • No 33 Sonny Rollins
  • No 35 Bluesy Jazz

The chord progressions seem to be pretty accurate according to Karen my teacher (she often moans about some of these books).
 

visionari1

Senior Member
Messages
1,606
Location
Out in the Countryside of Nelson NZ
I also have a few Hal Leonard playalongs, and throughly recommend them.

I have:
Vol 2 Miles Davis
Vol 4 Jazz Ballads
Vol 8 Antonio Carlos Jobim
Vol 12 John Coltrane

I fiind by importing the MP3's into Transcribe you can really work on sections with & without soloits.

I also open say 4 transcribe files open

1 Hal version no solist
2 Hal version with solist
2 Craisydaisydoo version
4 The original tune.


It's really important to put the bar counts in accurately.
I cycle through these to hopefully get everything under my fingers.

Cheers:mrcool
 

Jules

Formerly known as "nachoman"
Messages
4,450
Location
brighton by the sea
Apparently the "Soul Jazz" one is particularly good. The manager of our London store flagged it for some great 1960s blue note-y type of material. A really listenable era, not particularly well represented in playalong land. Whens someone going ot do a Turrentine playalong..... ?
 

rhysonsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,518
Location
Surrey, UK
My favourite at the moment is the Horace Silver. Some really fine tunes and plenty of variety, with minor blues, latin feel, 6/8 etc.

I've also got the Benny Golson, Sonny Rollins and the Soul jazz that Jules mentions.

Rhys
 

thehunt

Member
Messages
797
Location
Studham Bedfordshire
Hi Chris, funny but i am doing Angel eyes and Masquerade for our Christmas concert. I have a few of the Hal Leonard playalongs, Jazz Ballads and another one which i can't remember.
Crazydaisydoo's version of Masquerade is just beautiful. That is from the smooth jazz playalong. Phil
 
OP
Chris98

Chris98

Senior Member
Messages
1,076
I don't know whether to thank you all or not as I fear this might end up being expensive! But it's good to know that they are worth further investigation.

Hi Chris, funny but i am doing Angel eyes and Masquerade for our Christmas concert. I have a few of the Hal Leonard playalongs, Jazz Ballads and another one which i can't remember.
Crazydaisydoo's version of Masquerade is just beautiful. That is from the smooth jazz playalong. Phil
Phil, did I read that right, you're mentioning Christmas already! :shocked: I'm looking forward to hearing how the concert goes.

I Listened to Crazydaisydoo's version of Masquerade, and the Smooth Jazz play a long is now even more tempting.

All the best,

Chris
 

Sue

If at first you don't succeed try try try a Gin
Subscriber
Messages
2,340
Location
The Millenium Falcon
I have 3 Hal Leonards:

Volume 6 - Jazz classics
Volume 43 - Gerry Mulligan Classics - actually arranged by Gerry mulligan and features him and his own Rhythm section!
Volume 17 - Count Basie

I enjoy playing along with these every now and then when I have time for some self indulgence :)
 

thehunt

Member
Messages
797
Location
Studham Bedfordshire
Xmas concert

You know it's not that far off. 6th Dec. Only got eight weeks to get my fingers round my impro on Angel eyes and this masquerade. Struggling with them both. :(
I don't know whether to thank you all or not as I fear this might end up being expensive! But it's good to know that they are worth further investigation.



Phil, did I read that right, you're mentioning Christmas already! :shocked: I'm looking forward to hearing how the concert goes.

I Listened to Crazydaisydoo's version of Masquerade, and the Smooth Jazz play a long is now even more tempting.

All the best,

Chris
 
Messages
59
I've just got Vol. 35 Bluesy Jazz, and made a start on the first track "Angels Eyes" which is rather nice and bluesy. I noticed Pete recommended the book on his main site and although I think it's going to be a bit challenging with the improvisation I like what I've heard so far and keen to give it ago, the backing tracks are really good as well.

The other thing is that the book has notation for C Treble, Bb, Eb & C bass instruments so one book and CD has you covered whatever you choose to play.

Does anyone know if all the Hal Leonard Play Alongs have good quality backing tacks and are there any other titles in the series you'd recommend?

All the best,

Chris
HI there Chris
There's a Gerry Mulligan Hal Leonard play along. Its very good. The tunes are actually played by Gerry Mulligan and his rythym section - They are all Gerry mulligan original tunes - so I guess it helps if you are a GM fan.
The only thing about it that i dislike is that they have changed the key of the songs to suit being played on Eb, Bb & C instruments so you get a bit of a surprise when you try and play along with an original recording (but then why bother when you got a GM playalong?.. and they do always say that the best way to learn is to try tunes in all different keys)
All the best
Jake
 
Last edited by a moderator:
OP
Chris98

Chris98

Senior Member
Messages
1,076
I was hoping someone might be able to help me, tonight I decided to have a go at "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy' from HL Vol. 35 Bluesy Jazz. But I've run into a problem, the lowest note on the score is A (below the stave) which alas is not possible on my tenor.

No Problem I thought I'll transpose it up an octave on the fly, which would be good practice anyway. Then I ran into G and A above the stave which if I'm transposing makes that the altisimo range, somewhere I've yet to go on my instrument.

Is it best just to shift up the octave for those parts that are written too low for my instrument and read the rest as written or can I be clever and substitute say the low A, actually I don't think that will work as it needs to go down the come back up. Oh dear what to do? Go back to "Sugar" iron out a few wrinkles I guess.

All the best,

Chris
 

half diminished

Senior Member
Messages
1,361
Location
Buckinghamshire
Is it best just to shift up the octave for those parts that are written too low for my instrument and read the rest as written
I run in to this also in fact Karen often asks me to play 'an octave above' how it's written on the fly. I'm playing Alice in Wonderland which starts on low A, which I don't have on the tenor so I play an octave above. Recently I was asked to play Smoke Gets in your eyes and octave above how it was written. This also mans playing Altissimo G so Karen suggested I just play that note an octave lower. Worked OK and added an interested twist at the higher octave.
 
Top Bottom