One can watch saxophonist Ben Donnelly on YouTube, playing the bebop-influenced “Chasing The Needle”, the twelfth item in this collection, to obtain a good idea of what is presented here. Piano parts are fully notated, clearly printed and idiomatic. There are no chord symbols. The YouTube clip even offers a brief cutaway shot of Ben Donnelly’s bare feet, as a bonus! Unexpected Items is a publication that will be a useful and welcome item for the busy teacher to add to his personal library of jazz and funk-influenced pieces. Include them in lessons, maybe as sight reading, for fun, or just for stylistic purposes. The 66 pages represent good value.
Unexpected Items: A dozen fun and challenging original concert pieces for alto saxophone, ranging in difficulty from grades five to eight. Ben Donnelly. Shelled On Records, London UK. ISBN 978-1-78926-242-1. £17.99