Transcription: Li'l Darlin'

Composer: Neal Hefti
Transcription starts at 0'11"; ends at 4'12"
From the album: Count Basie - Wild & Swingin'
Leaders of the session: Count Basie
Recorded: July 23, 1968; Antibes Jazz Festival; Juan-les-Pins, France
CD: Fuel 2000 Records 302 061 352 2

For many Count Basie fans, " Li'l Darlin' " is the tune most closely associated with Freddie Green because of the guitar's G13 arpeggio that occurs four times in the arrangement. On this CD, a microphone was positioned very close to Freddie; his guitar was recorded much louder than was typical. This fortunate circumstance allowed Freddie's comping for the entire tune to be transcribed.

  • Measures 1 and 2: The celebrated G13 voicing!

  • Measure 9: The G and C# appear to be an unusual choice of notes, but can be heard as the 9th and augmented 5th of an F7 chord. The original 1958 Neal Hefti arrangement calls for a F7+5 in this measure.

  • Measure 11: The F voicing on beat 1 was a Freddie favorite.

  • Measures 14 and 15: Here is a perennial Freddie Green rhythm guitar "lick". He frequently used this ascending figure when a dominant 7th chord lasted for two measures. The written change is G7, but he substitutes a Dm7 for the G7. Dm7, spelled d-f-a-c; sounds like a G11 or a G9sus4 when heard over a G bass note.

  • Measures 24 and 25: Again, he substitutes a minor seventh chord (Cm7) for a dominant seventh chord (F7).

  • Measure 32: An F6 voicing that was infrequently used by Mr. Rhythm.

  • Measure 42: The Bb voicing on beat 1 is unusual as it was fingered with the thumb on the 6th string and the index finger barring the other strings. The voicing can also be employed as a Gm7 if the 6th string bass note is sounded instead of being muted.

  • Measure 56: The voicing on beat 1 is open to question as it cannot be discerned, even when isolated via a digital transcription device.

  • Measures 72 and 73: This descending line is an indisputable example of Freddie's use of one-note voicings.

Important: The chord diagrams illustrate probable forms used by Freddie Green based on extensive research conducted by the primary contributors to this web site. As there is no video record of this recording session, Freddie's exact fingerings will never be known. Note that Freddie often used his left thumb to mute or partially depress the 6th string.

  • An "x" indicates that a finger is placed on the string, but the string is not fully pushed down to make contact with the fret.

  • A "black dot" indicates that a finger is placed on the string, and the string is pushed down to make contact with the fret.

  • A "white dot" indicates that a finger is placed on the string, and the string is pushed down to make contact with the fret. A white dot also indicates that the note is added to the chord form on the previous beat. Adding an upper note on beat 2 or 4 is a typical Freddie Green technique.

  • If there is no "x", "black dot", or "white dot", the string is fully damped by a finger of the left hand.

Transcribed by Michael Pettersen
October 2004

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