2023 Hank Marr High School Jazz Award

Sponsored by Jamey Aebersold & Stanton’s Sheet Music with support from the Jazz Education Connection of Ohio.

Hank Marr High School Jazz Award

Columbus musical legend Hank Marr was one of the world’s masters of the Hammond B-3 organ. Along with Hank’s celebrity status as a member of the jazz elite, he was a dedicated and gifted educator. In recognition of over fifty years as a performer, teacher, arranger and conductor, the Jazz Arts Group has established the Hank Marr High School Jazz Award as a tribute to this special individual. This award will recognize an outstanding high school musicians and their dedication jazz performance.

Grand Prize winner will be awarded:

  • The opportunity to perform as a guest soloist with the Columbus Jazz Orchestra
  • A $500 cash prize
  • Eight (8) Jamey Aebersold books

Runners-Up:

  • The two runners-up will receive eight (8) Jamey Aebersold books: four (4) to keep and four (4) to give to their school music program.

Important Dates:

  • Audition submission deadline: April 5, 2023
  • First round audition notification: April 19, 2023
  • Finals: Saturday, May 3, 2023 – Jazz Academy (Columbus, Ohio)
    • All participants in the live final round must participate in a CDC symptom questionnaire upon arrival, wear a mask, and adhere to social distancing guidelines when in the Jazz Academy space. Vocalists and wind players may remove their masks only when actively performing.

Audition Submissions:

Note: Your audition must be AUDIO ONLY. No video submissions will be accepted. Please reach out if you are in need of assistance in creating an audio recording, as there are many ways to do so (see below for tips!).

All entrants: (except drummers, vocalists and bassists) submit three (3) selections from the Jamey Aebersold collection of play-alongs (see below for tips on selecting tunes); select a jazz standard, a 12-bar blues, and a selection of your choice. Entire audition recording should not exceed 20 minutes.

Drummers: Record two selections of your choice from ESSENTIAL STYLES FOR THE DRUMMER AND BASSIST, Vol. I or Vol. II by S. Houghton & T. Warrington (Alfred); select one swing selection and one contrasting style (use tracks without drums); for your third selection, provide evidence of a medium swing, trade 4s for 32 bars (4 bars time / 4 bars solo). Entire Audition recording should not exceed 20 minutes.

Bassists: Record two selections of your choice from ESSENTIAL STYLES FOR THE DRUMMER AND BASSIST, Vol. I or Vol. II by S. Houghton & T. Warrington (Alfred); select one swing selection and one contrasting style (use tracks without bass); for your third selection, provide a 12-bar blues of your choice: 1 chorus melody, 1 chorus walking bass line, 1 chorus solo on blues changes and 1 chorus melody. Entire audition recording should not exceed 20 minutes.

Vocalists: Record three selections of your choice from Aebersold Play-a-Long Volume 107, Volume 113, or Volume 117. Selections should demonstrate contrasting styles. Entire audition recording should not exceed 20 minutes.

Audition Tips:

  • When choosing selections from the Jamey Aebersold collection of play-alongs, consider selecting from Volume 54, “Maiden Voyage”, which contains many good examples of common jazz standards. Click HERE to purchase.
  • Jamey Aebersold’s list of songs for beginners contains many titles suitable for your audition. Download HERE.
  • For the complete “Rapid Reference” sheet of all Aebersold selections, including song titles, tempos and song types (Blues, Standard, etc.), click HERE.
  • There are many ways to record your audition, from an iPhone recording to a portable recorder such as a Zoom or similar device, or even a recording in a full studio. However, a high-quality recording will best represent your playing, and a sub-par recording could hinder the success of your audition. For questions on how to record your audition selections, please ask your band director/private teacher, or don’t hesitate to contact Zach Compston, Jazz Arts Group Director of Education and Community Engagement at zcompston@jazzartsgroup.org.