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NOTE: Basie was in the studio but did not participate in this particular recording. The magic wand that propelled Nestico from a solid but almost anonymous career in music, to the best work in Hollywood through the s and well into the s and beyond, was held by Count Basie. At left: Nestico on trombone — Samuel L. Nestico — was born in that hotbed of swing and jazz, Pittsburgh.
Through his early years, he learned to play the trombone and arrange, played with many bands in the Pittsburgh area, and spent time as a staff musician on WCAE, the ABC radio network affiliate in Pittsburgh. He retired in as chief arranger for the U. Marine Corps band in Washington, D. Sal Nistico was one of the busiest musicians in the decade of the s, playing, among others, with the big bands of Woody Herman and, in Count Basie. Sammy Nestico filled in the details of how his career in music took some very positive turns in an interview in with Marc Myers of the wonderful Jazzwax.
So I called him up. He was playing with Count Basie at the time. Marine Band there at the time. Not long after our conversation, the Basie band came to town, and Sal called and came over. SN: Of course. But instead of Sal introducing me to the Chief, he had trombonist Grover Mitchell do it. Grover was from Pittsburgh, my home town. When I met Basie, he asked me to write a couple of arrangements. I gave that to him and a couple of others.
Write some more. These assignments quickly led to other high-level work. At age 45, Nestico was on his way to a successful high-level career in music. After the superbly Basie-ish introduction played by Nestico on piano 2 , the main melody is set forth in eight bars by a Harmon-muted trumpet probably Al Aarons, the vastly underappreciated trumpet soloist in this Basie band , in unison with a flute, played by Bobby Plater. The two-beat rhythm subtly suggests a horse walking slowly with a leather-skinned cowboy astride it, across a scrubby plain in Marlboro Country.
Remember, this was composed in the s. Right: Sammy Nestico in The trombones, led by Grover Mitchell, play a robust couple of notes that lead to the repeat of the melody played this time by another grouping of instruments. The reeds take the bridge, being balanced against the rhythmic open brass.
Notice how Nestico comps the saxophones on piano in this sequence: he had been listening carefully to the master — Count Basie. Nestico builds a sonic pyramid next, first with the trombones, then the trumpets, then the whole band, and they are shouting. But not for long. More contrasts soon arrive, this time in the dynamics used: louder then softer. Once again Nestico at the piano provides the pivot point for the ensemble which follows.
The various sections of the orchestra, trombones, trumpets and saxophones play antiphonally for eight bars. After this brilliant climax, the dynamic level drops again, and we hear the main flute and mute melody against those tasty instrumental background voices. The finale is a big one, with the entire ensemble building to a blasting end. This is happy music created by a happy man, who at age 95, as this is written, is still with us.
Thanks Sammy, and keep swinging! Sammy Nestico, piano. Great background on Sammy Nestico…and still living! Makes me want to watch Blazing Saddles again. Mike, this is great!!! Many thanks!!! Sammy and Shirley Nestico are my friends!! Your research is awesome!!! This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.
Main Menu. Right: Sammy Nestico in The trombones, led by Grover Mitchell, play a robust couple of notes that lead to the repeat of the melody played this time by another grouping of instruments. The recording presented in this post was digitally remastered by Mike Zirpolo.
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Jazz Journey Series. Score and set of parts. Rhythm section parts are partially notated with chords cued. To play the media you will need to update your Flash plugin. This name will appear next to your review. Leave it blank if you wish to appear as "Anonymous".
“Hay Burner” (1968) Count Basie and Sammy Nestico
HAY BURNER Nestico Arrange Jazz Big Band - (Part Score) Hayburner (Nestico)