September 11, 2010 in Jazz Standards
This is among Charlie Parker’s most melodic heads. It’s a fantastic tune to blow over, and it’s more accessible than many of Bird’s other tunes. He’s a story to illustrate what I mean: I have a friend who is a good blues guitarist. He does not particularly care for jazz, but he loves this song. It’s his favorite jazz song to play. I think that is a testament to how melodic the head is, especially for a bebop tune. Yardbird Suite is one of the most singable bebop heads, and the changes are great also. I love the quick ii-V in concert Eb (F-7 Bb7) right after the I chord in C. This same progression appears also in many other tunes (in various keys), such as Groovin’ High and Joy Spring.
Yardbird Suite Playalong
Recordings of Yardbird Suite by Charlie Parker, Herbie Mann, Kevin Mahogany,
Hampton Hawes, and Tal Farlow
Richie Cole-with one of my mentors, Bruce Forman on guitar!
Cyrus Chestnut, Solo Piano
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