Jack DeJohnette on “First Light” (album) 1972

2-pages of transcription of Jack DeJohnette on “First Light” (album). Very short, but very musical examples of mambo, rock, swing, 1972.

The publishing of these transcriptions is admittedly a bit self-indulgent. “First Light” is the very first jazz album I ever owned, when I was twelve-years-old back in 1972. DeJohnette’s use of his hi-hat during the passage I transcribed from Lonely Town (which is the accompaniment to the piano solo) caught my attention even then, years before my first drum lesson: I can remember playing it over and over and thinking how interesting and grooving and perfect it was. Nowadays, I’m also impressed by the integration of the influences of Roy Haynes, Tony Williams, and Elvin Jones that it suggests. But of course, it ends up sounding like no one but Jack DeJohnette. I still practice this often and think of it as a sort of prototype of what a non-repetitive, across-the-barline conception of modern jazz drumming could be.