Others may not have been as happy to play Recorda Me on a gig as I am. There are certain jazz snobs out there who don't like to play songs because "everybody plays them." This is not my viewpoint. On the contrary, these songs get called on gigs and at jam sessions for a reason -- they are great songs! However, since everyone does play them, we have to make an extra effort to make sure we stand out when we do play them. One great way to do that is to go to the original recording of the tune, and REALLY LEARN IT off the record. Take Blue Bossa, another Joe Henderson classic -- it's often used as a beginner/intermediate level tune because it is straightforward to improvise over -- but how many of us seasoned jazz players have scoffed at the idea of playing it on a gig? The thing is, that tune is killer! (Killer by the way is a good thing in jazz lingo) If you really check out the original Joe Henderson version and learn how he played the actual rhythm of the melody and how he soloed over it, you'd realize that Blue Bossa is no tune to scoff it, rather, it's a tune to STUDY!
The same goes for Recorda Me, you might have played it a million times on gigs, but have you ever played the intro from the recording? It's such a cool intro that not a lot of people play, probably because it's not written down in the Real Book. Let's change that right now and learn the intro once and for all!
Check out my transcription and video tutorial below. There is a unison left-hand piano and bass line and some simple 3-note right hand chord voicings to go along with it. Enjoy it and surprise everyone on your next gig when you play the real introduction to Recorda Me!