Transcribed jazz trombone solos

Transcribed jazz trombone solos

There is a lot of good music out there that has already been played! As a jazz player, you can take advantage of that and learn from the masters. Transcribing jazz trombone players is a good place to start.

Transcribing solos played on your instrument is smart, even if there might be some technical challenges, you know that it is playable on the instrument. Often you will find that licks and melodies that sound hip or challenging are in fact quite logical on the instrument it is played on.

If you are new to transcribing jazz solos, I suggest beginning with articulate artists such as J.J. Johnson or Curtis Fuller. Both their melodies, phrasing, and rhythmical patterns are clear, making them easier to write down and memorize.

Trombone jazz etudes based on famous jazz standards

If you want to start playing trombone jazz solos right away, skipping the transcribing part, I got you covered: I have written fun and challenging jazz solos for trombone based on the chords from famous jazz standards. These jazz etudes all start easy and the difficulty gradually builds up for each chorus. If you signed up for my newsletter, you already have one in your inbox. There are over 100 pages of trombone jazz solos in the member’s section of this site, and more are added regularly. Here you will find all the solos from my best-selling book 10 Jazz Etudes For Trombone plus many more. Here is a list of some of the tunes you will be soloing over:

  • Summertime
  • All The Things You Are
  • Stella By Starlight
  • Blues in Bb
  • Body And Soul
  • Rhythm Changes
  • Take The A Train
  • Cherokee
  • Doxy
  • Have You Met Miss Jones
  • On Green Dolphin Street
  • All Of Me
  • How Insensitive
  • Donna Lee
  • Misty
  • Night And Day
  • There Will Never Be Another You
  • Killer Joe
  • Take Five

Every note in each solo is there for a reason, and they are written especially for a very special instrument – the marvelous trombone! Start your free trial now and access all the solos in the Jazz etudes section.

Transcribe yourself

Yes, ready-to-go sheet music with trombone solos is great, and I play these jazz etudes frequently, both when I practice myself and with my students. But deep learning comes when you transcribe the solos yourself. That lets you get under the skin of the trombone player. You gain a deeper understanding of the melodic lines when you have to figure them out on your own and examine their relationship to the chords. This is probably the best ear training available for a jazz musician, and I strongly recommend you get started right away. Don’t just go for the notes. Listen carefully to the phrasing, dynamics, and tone of the trombonist you are transcribing.

Start your free trial now and get access to all the jazz solos and jazz etudes for trombone right away – plus more than 2.000 pages of trombone sheet music and exercises covering all aspects of your performance.



Don’t borrow – steal!

Like Pablo Picasso said, “good artists borrow, great artists steal”. I encourage you to do so too.

  • Find phrases and patterns in the solos you transcribe and give them some extra attention.
  • Analyze why that phrase caught your ear.
  • Transpose it and play it in all 12 keys
  • Find spots in other jazz standards where it fits.
  • Tweak it and make your own variations.

This is a great way to build up your jazz vocabulary, and once you played a phrase enough times, you will start thinking that it was your own all the time, and it will be incorporated into your solo playing. Believe me, I know that to be true.  So start stealing! Fun fact: in the above-mentioned jazz etudes, you’ll find tons of my preferred jazz phrases, stuff I play all the time when I improvise. You are welcome to steal all the phrases you like and put them to (better) use. Lots of the phrases were probably stolen by me in the first place, but I like to believe that they originate from my brain…

Solos by trombone masters

If you, like me, tend to be a little bit lazy, I have dusted off the Internet and found some great solo transcriptions for you. Laziness is good, especially if it means grabbing your horn within a few seconds.

J.J Johnson: I Love You
J.J Johnson & Al Grey: Let Me See
Frank Rosolino: Let’s Make It
Frank Rosolino: Cherry
Curtis Fuller: That’s Alright With Me
Curtis Fuller: Mode for Joe
Carl Fontana: Polka Dots And Moonbeams
Steve Turre: Chairman of the Board
Andy Martin: Get Happy
Wycliffe Gordon: Jolly Jume Jumey

Thanks to Nick Lariviere, Dave Wilken, and Al Kay for sharing the solo transcriptions!

Trumpet solos

If you are interested in transcribed trumpet solos, there is a whole lot of them to be found here!

Sax solos

Kelly Bucheger has a bunch of great saxophone solos available at his site. Find out how great Coltrane and Dexter Gordon would have sounded if they were trombone players!

Do you have trombone solo transcriptions that you want to share? Send me an email!

Slide on!

Anders Larson trombone player


  1. william 13 years ago

    muito bom o site, e é bom saber que podemos ter pessoas que postam materias ditaticos sem outras inteções, valeu …

  2. king2b 13 years ago

    Thanks for the kind words, William (and thanks to google translate, not too good at portugese!)! Always nice to hear that you find the content useful!


  3. Sergey 12 years ago

    where is it possible to listen to the original versions?

  4. Anders 12 years ago

    Hi Sergey!

    Try searching for the songs on spottily – they might have the right versions!

  5. Rob Egerton 12 years ago

    Hi there. Congratulations on a great site! On the subject of jazz trombone transcriptions, I have uploaded nearly 50 of my own to my YouTube channel:

    Please go and have a look and tell me what you think. All the very best!

  6. ERIC WIK 12 years ago





  7. Anders 12 years ago

    Eric, thanks for the kind words! I hope you find something you can use on the site!


  8. Matthew Johnson, M.D. 12 years ago

    Excellent work on the CF solo for Soon. I was very close to Carl. We were on the Paul Anka band in the late 70s.

    The most natural Trombone player ever.Also the laziest !! As Buddy Rich was to the drums, Carl was to the Trombone. the big difference ??? CF was a real sweetheart. I called him my Trombone Dad. Watrous calls him The Godfather of Bebop Trombone. I agree wholeheartedly !!

    For those who haven’t heard this track, it is on Carl Fontana ” the Fifties” . Uptown Records, Flashback Series.

    Matthew Johnson
    Lsas Vegas, NV

  9. Anders 12 years ago

    Hi Matthew!

    Thanks for your comment, really inspiring to hear about your personal relationship with Carl, wish I had been there, but unfortunately I still wore diapers in the late 70s… 🙂 Feel free to share more of your trombone stories here on digitaltrombone anytime!

  10. Gaby 12 years ago

    Thank you so much for the website! I’m 1st trombone at my high school and I really want to work on my soloing and your website seems so helpful!

  11. Anders 12 years ago

    Hi Gaby!

    Nice to hear from you! If you are into improvising, I can recommend these two posts (among others):

  12. Kali Barton 9 years ago

    Thank you for posting the transcriptions, I’m in the process of learning to improvise at the moment so the timing couldn’t be better. I’m afraid I’m rather attached to the little black dots and feel lost when faced with chord progressions.

  13. Nick Viola 8 years ago

    Your site is EXCELLENT
    Thanks a million.
    Have a good, pleasant holiday.

  14. Anders Larson 8 years ago

    Thanks Nick 🙂 Comments like yours keep me going!

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