How to Play Work Song by Nat Adderley and Oscar Peterson Jr.

Nat Adderley, the trumpet playing brother of Cannonball Adderley, wrote “Work Song” for an album by the same name released by Riverside in 1960. Be sure to pay close attention to the hits for the rhythm section on the head. This lesson is based off the recording below.

This website his several resources for you on how to play this tune.

First and foremost, I encourage you to learn the melody from the recording. You may need to practice it several times to memorize it. You can use a real book or iRealB, but sometimes the chords are wrong, so I advise to use the recording first.

Once you’ve learned the melody and play along, I would advise you to start learning the chords.

After learning the chords, including the hits for the head, I would advise to learn the piano voicings. I have created several piano voicings tutorials to help you.

Another way to help internalize the chords is to learn the bass line. Below you will find bass line resources for all instruments.

Hope this is helpful! Below is the original recording.