Michael Jefry Stevens

Large Ensemble Arrangements

I have always been interested in the relationship between classical and improvised music.  Over the past two decades I have been composing music that blends both genres.

I organized the “Mountain Chamber Jazz Ensemble” in 2015.  This 14-piece ensemble featured strings, woodwinds, brass, rhythm section and voice.  Several of these arrangements are listed in this section.  In the mid 1990’s, as a member of the “BMI Jazz Composer’s Workshop” I began writing big band music.  I met Jeff Raheb there and we started the “Brooklyn Jazz Composer’s Orchestra”.  I wrote the majority of my big band charts during that time period.  

The big band charts range from a deep swing groove (The Money Thing, Jazz Tune) to more open musical forms (Renata, Metatron).  Miniature is a beautiful jazz waltz, and Dancer is written over a long tonal ostinato.  The hybrid charts are more open in nature, utilizing strings and woodwinds as well as voice.

Big Band Arrangements price at $59.95 and include score and all parts as pdf files.

EASY  This is an extremely swinging big band arrangement.  The introduction of the main theme is built around a very strong 12/8 groove.  The blowing section switches to a straight ahead swing feel.  The changes are built on an extended series of dominant chords moving through the circle of fifths. 

Great piece for a high school big band.  Challenging and fun at the same time.

EASY  This composition was composed while I was in residency with the dance department of Virginia Intermont College.  During the week long dance project composed this piece in one of the campus practice rooms.  

This big band arrangement is not difficult and has no individual solos.  The entire group solos at the beginning and the end of the written piece.  It is extremely tonal and would fit into any high school or college big band program

DIFFICULT  This is the first big band composition I wrote as a member of the BMI Jazz Composer’s Workshop in the mid to late 1990s.  The attached recording features The Brooklyn Jazz Composer’s Orchestra performing the piece with Dave Liebman on soprano saxophone.  

This is a very complicated and challenging piece of music and should only be performed by a more advanced big band ensemble. 

DIFFICULT  This is another piece composed for the BMI Jazz Composer’s Orchestra.  This piece is in ¾ time and is built on the opening piano motive. 

The harmonic structure is challenging but approachable by a university jazz ensemble.  This is a very lyrical piece of music.  The orchestration includes much writing for flutes and clarinets.

MEDIUM  This is one of my first compositions from the late 1970’s.  In the late 1990’s I created this big band chart.  This chart really swings.  The blowing changes begin with a Cmi7 – F7 vamp and then proceed through a series of chromatic harmonies that end on a Gbmaj7 chord.  

A bit challenging for beginners but definitely fun.  If the ranges are too high you can move everything down an octave when necessary: