Because of the focus of Jazz@Rochester, I'm often asked whether I'm a musician. I wish. . . . I have dabbled around its edges. I took piano lessons as a child, played trombone and drums in junior high band, and in the past year have bought a mandolin, which alas sits in its gig bag in a corner of the room for the time being. I may want to check out Jazz Licks to get some licks to play when the time comes that I actually want to use my limited ability to read music and play an instrument. The blog is being used by its writer to try to collect jazz licks for publishing in a book later. While compiling, "he" (I'm assuming by the "Big Buzzard" moniker, but who knows?) is publishing them on his blog. As he writes:
Like all jazz musicians, over the years I've learned from those who have gone before, by listening to recordings, and transcribing improvised solos. It's a great way to keep your brain in tune, and to improve your listening and playing skills. Last week I was approached by a music publisher and asked if I would be interested in compiling a set of 50 'Jazz Licks' to be published as a set of cards. It was obvious immediately that this was far too big a task for one person, if there's to be any hope of some kind of comprehensive coverage of the whole of jazz. So, I'm opening this appeal to jazz musicians everywhere to 'send me your favourite licks'.
The writer is interpreting a "lick" as a short phrase, up to 4 bars in length, played as part of an improvised solo or accompaniment. He's got 21 posted so far (as of this post), with music notations and an mp3, ranging from Dizzy Gillespie's Salt Peanuts to Pat Metheny's Third Wind.