Composers - Scott Mertens
Scott Mertens is a pianist, educator, and composer/arranger based in northern Illinois. Originally from Missouri, Scott has a bachelor’s degree in music education from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and he has a Master of Music degree from Northern Illinois University.
He was the director of the NIU Community School of the Arts Jazz Band, and is a summer faculty member at the NIU Jazz Camp. Scott regularly performs as a jazz pianist in the Chicago area, and is a member of the Doug Stone/Doug Bratt Big Band, a Chicago group which performs all-original big band charts.
Scott has worked extensively with middle and high school jazz bands, and is a band director in Sycamore, Illinois.
Big Band Charts
Funk-aayy! is written for middle school/easy high school level players. The chart features a "Chameleon"-esque groove and a little slice of "I Mean You" inspired melody on the chorus. There’s a section of F blues blowing on the middle section, and a gospel (goin’ to church!) section near the end. Give it a listen and view the score to the right.
This straight-ahead swing tune is perfect for getting middle school groups excited about jazz. The Mingus-style backgrounds and the development give this tune a bit more edge than your typical young jazz band blues chart.
Check it out at the listen link to the left…
Smoke on the Nile
This piece works well with advanced high school, college, or professional groups. This up-swing tune takes a simple melody and develops it in ways that will make this piece an audience favorite. The brass ranges and solo
changes are reasonable, and the saxes will get a good workout on the soli section.