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"Criss Cross" is a jazz composition written by the iconic American jazz pianist and composer Thelonious Monk. The tune was recorded and released as the title track of his 1963 album "Criss-Cross." The piece is known for its distinctive and intricate melody, typical of Monk's compositional style. Monk's compositions are often characterized by angular melodies, unusual harmonies, and rhythmic complexities. "Criss Cross" is no exception, featuring Monk's unique approach to improvisation and his idiosyncratic use of dissonance and syncopation.


His compositions have become standards in the jazz repertoire, and "Criss Cross" is an excellent example of his unique and enduring musical legacy. This arrangement of "Criss Cross" is arranged by Igmar Thomas, leader of the Revive Big Band. Igmar was commissioned by renowned Producer, Meghan Stabile of Revive Music Group, to arrange this song for a singular, special performance in collaboration with legendary Vocalist and Songwriter, Bilal!


This arrangement was originally tailored crafted for the Grammy award-winning vocalist, Bilal, and Revive Big Band. The arrangement has been requested by the esteemed Rutgers University so this iteration has been updated and customized to be accessible to any big band and featured Vocalist or Instrumentalist! All original lyrics were written by Bilal.



  • Jazz
  • Big Band
  • Thelonious Monk Influenced



Set to feature any vocalist or solo instrumentalist. The solo section at both letters "J" and "N" are both improvised solo sections for the featured vocalist (scatting) and/or a talented soloist to showcase their musicianship. Extra parts with solo chord changes for an additional featured soloist have been included. Background parts occur throught each solo section. Thus, this arrangement is great for a modern-day vocalist and big band that can be versatilely employed for many years to come.



  • Vocalist, 5 Saxes (Tenor Sax Solo), 4 Trombones, 4 Trumpets, Drums, Upright (or Electric) Bass, Piano/Keyboard, Guitar + Featured Improvised Solo Tenor Sax.



  • High School (Advanced)
  • College/University
  • Amateur
  • Professional



  • Downloadable PDF - Music Director Notes directly from Igmar
  • Downloadable PDF Score
  • Downloadable PDF Parts
  • Downloadable MIDI MP3's



"Criss Cross," composed by Thelonious Monk arranged for Bilal, is another very intriguing arrangement in RBB's repertoire. This arrangement aims to showcase the unmistakable unique rhythmic, chordal voicings, stylings, and phrasings throughout the arrangement. Showcasing the genius of Monk. All while featuring the versatility of your ensemble's featured vocalist.


For optimal performance and efficacy, this arrangement will be played best with an upright bass. The piece can be performed adeptly with either a vocalist or a proficient, featured instrumentalist (that would play the melody in place of the vocalist).

Criss Cross

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