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for Bernard Black and the River City Brass Band, Music Director Denis Colwell
Memories of You
Andy Razaf/Eubie Blake, composers
Drew Fennell, arranger


I sat for a number of years next to one of the best trumpet players anywhere, Bernie Black. I am generally not one to "blow smoke," so believe me when I say it that he can do things that no one else can do. And that is where this arrangement of the charming tune Memories of You began. Ever since hearing Benny Goodman's rendition of the tune in the movie "The Benny Goodman Story," I've always appreciated the simple grace Goodman had as he glided around his instrument. Since Bernie has that same quality on the trumpet, I saw a perfect match in this song.

For me, Benny Goodman's version of the tune is Memories of You. I was shocked to find, after buying the sheet music of the tune, how little Goodman's performances resembled the original melody. It really is an improvisation on the tune. Even though it is not so true to the original, it really is so very captivating. So, I did a pretty faithful transcription of the tune a la Benny Goodman, and then backed it up with a sumptuous but gentle accompaniment.

I think Bernie is probably one of only a handful of trumpet players anywhere who can play this with the facility required. It is a difficult tune - even for Bernie, I imagine - but he just makes it sound so very easy (and that, of course, is the hard part).

  • Memories of You is not published.

  • Hear a short sample of Memories of You by the River City Brass Band, Denis Colwell, Music Director, featuring Bernard Black, Cornet from the compact disc recording Big Band Brass!*.

*Right click on the link and choose Save Target As... to download the file.

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