Tag Archives: Rick Margitza

Transcribed: Widow’s Walk – Rick Margitza

 

 

This solo has all of the things that I like about Rick Margitza. There’s a lot of great melodic inside playing, material built off of upper structure triads, and a strong display of fluency in the altissimo register. I actually learned this solo 6 months ago, maybe longer, but I just got around to writing it down. I spent a LOT of time playing this slowed down to 50% (even down to 25% sometimes!) in Transcribe! It was the only way I could have possibly gotten the 32nd-note double-time stuff down.

A couple of notes for practicing/performance:
The solo goes up to altissimo D (D4). I decided to write this all with ledger lines and not use 8va.
There are a couple of harmonics in the solo. They have a ° sign above them. Finger the bottom note and sound the top note.

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Transcribed: Rick Margitza – Change Up Melody

This melody blew me away the first time I heard and every time after that. I finally decided to sit down and work it out. On the recording, the Tenor 1 part is played the first time through. This is followed by 4 measures and then the melody is stated a second time with the Tenor 2 joining in. Except for the second note, the Tenor 2 part is a major 3rd below the Tenor 1 part through the entire melody. It creates a nice, augmented kind of sound. You’ll hear in the recording that the piano and bass are playing only the root and 5th of each chord. That openness helps to avoid muddiness with the harmonically and rhythmically dense melody. After the 2nd statement of the melody, the bass starts walking and the piano takes a more traditional comping role.

This tune can be found on Rick Margitza’s Color album. It’s currently out of print and can be a little tough to find.

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Transcribed: Rick Margitza – Spin

Rick_Margitza

 

 

Spin is a tune written by Rick Margitza that he recorded on his 2001 release, Memento. I’ve had this album for a couple years and have always really enjoyed this tune in particular, but only got around to transcribing it this month. It was a fun process and I’m happy to share it with you now.

Here’s a breakdown of the tune:

  • Style: Jazz Waltz
  • Key: F
  • Form: The tune is 76 bars and roughly follows an ABA’ form (26, 26, and 24 bars) in the statement of the melody. One of the most interesting things in this tune to me is that the band plays the same chord progression in the solo sections, but aims for different cadence points leading to a form with 4 sections (16, 24, 20, and 16 bars)
  • Range: The entire horn! Margitza plays from Bb1 (low Bb) to Db4 (altissimo Db). The fluidity with which Rick Margitza plays lines in the altissimo register is one of my favorite things about his playing. You can really tell that he put a lot of work to be able to play like that.

Below is a recording of the melody followed by my transcription. After that, you’ll see the recording of the solo and the transcription. Both the melody and solo are written for tenor saxophone and are not in concert pitch.

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