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  1. #1

    Doing standards in a specific style during a jazz jam, question from a singer

    Hi all,

    I have been learning to sing jazz standards, this question is not about guitar playing specifically.

    As an example Come Rain or Shine as done by Chet Baker; he does it very different than more mainstream performances. He does it slower, darker, more intimate somehow including the accompaniment. Most other performances I have found out there are more bluesy and swingy.



    How would I communicate this vibe to the jazz jam musicians?

    -I know I can set the tempo and have a quick convo right before starting with piano and bassist or drummer about the pace.

    -I know I cant expect them to magically play it like the Chet Baker version nor do I want to go up there with too many instructions.

    Thanks in advance for your suggestions.

  2. # ADS
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  3. #2
    Join Date
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    Tell them you're doing it as a ballad and sing (to them) the first line at your tempo. If they're good, get a note to put you in your key, and start singing into the mic at your tempo - they'll fall in.

  4. #3
    In the rehearsal room have the track on your phone and play it for them. They'll get it in a few bars.

    On the bandstand you have to communicate the feel by singing, tapping, dancing and/or with vocal percussion.
    Sing a few notes from the bass line, add mouth percussion for the drum feel, and sing a few notes of the melodyh so they don't accidentally halve or double the time.

  5. #4
    Sometimes I’ll ask my usual jam partner (bass player) to let me start solo, and come in when he feels it.

  6. #5
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    Why can't being the one to count off the tempo to begin the song accomplish your needs?

  7. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Reflex View Post
    How would I communicate this vibe to the jazz jam musicians?
    Well, you just tell them, don't you

  8. #7
    thank you all!

  9. #8
    Join Date
    May 2010
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    be careful in jam session situations: ballads are very hard to play well, especially by amateurs and casual jammers. You might need to go with "slow swing".

  10. #9
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    I think if you just say 'there's this Chet Baker version of the tune I really like and the tempo is here...' that'll be fine

    There's only so much you can accomplish musically on jam sessions...

  11. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Reflex View Post
    Hi all,

    I have been learning to sing jazz standards, this question is not about guitar playing specifically.

    As an example Come Rain or Shine as done by Chet Baker; he does it very different than more mainstream performances. He does it slower, darker, more intimate somehow including the accompaniment. Most other performances I have found out there are more bluesy and swingy.



    How would I communicate this vibe to the jazz jam musicians?

    -I know I can set the tempo and have a quick convo right before starting with piano and bassist or drummer about the pace.

    -I know I cant expect them to magically play it like the Chet Baker version nor do I want to go up there with too many instructions.

    Thanks in advance for your suggestions.
    These are all great suggestions. You may need to go back to the same jam several times before the musicians get it down exactly the way you want it. Different jams have different levels of ability and versatility.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  12. #11
    Snap fingers on 2 and 4 and scat sing the walking bass line. Scat sing the way you want the drums to feel, maybe specify brushes. Then a few words of the lyric and mention Chet Baker. Good players will get close.

  13. #12
    Chet being Chet. He was a lovely musician.
    Jazz isn't dead. It just smells funny. FZ

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