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  1. #51

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    No Dan, but that tone is added because it is the melody note

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #52

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    Dan’s working on this tune in the key of E. That key seems to put the melody in an awkward range for guitar, but it prompted me to try the tune in several keys. I decided that the key of F seemed slightly easier than E. Here’s a rough take of the tune in F, sticking pretty much to the basic harmony. I don’t think I’ll continue in that key, but it was a good exercise.

    Here’s the chart I used.
    Last edited by KirkP; 05-24-2018 at 10:46 PM.

  4. #53

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    I always groan inside when a "Stella by Starlight" thread opens up. Always, always, always, the same tired debate over the first chord, as if nobody knew the "movie version" started on a different chord. The facts are simple. If you play totally solo, play it any way you want. If you expect to play with jam sessions, you better start with the Em7b5 unless the leader says otherwise.

    Believe it or not, "original" changes have little or no authority on how tunes are played. Chords are named variously, orchestrations vary slightly, and hello... this is jazz... we change things. We reharmonizes. We substitute. Sometimes we don't even play the melody on the "head" but just point at it.

    Sorry guys, I had to get that off my chest. I just get so weary of the "what's the first chord in stella, really now..." It's solo guitar, play what you like hearing.

  5. #54

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    Quote Originally Posted by lawson-stone
    I always groan inside when a "Stella by Starlight" thread opens up. Always, always, always, the same tired debate over the first chord, as if nobody knew the "movie version" started on a different chord. The facts are simple. If you play totally solo, play it any way you want. If you expect to play with jam sessions, you better start with the Em7b5 unless the leader says otherwise.

    Believe it or not, "original" changes have little or no authority on how tunes are played. Chords are named variously, orchestrations vary slightly, and hello... this is jazz... we change things. We reharmonizes. We substitute. Sometimes we don't even play the melody on the "head" but just point at it.

    Sorry guys, I had to get that off my chest. I just get so weary of the "what's the first chord in stella, really now..." It's solo guitar, play what you like hearing.
    Yikes, grouchy.

    Not sure what in this thread would have triggered you, but Christian was half kidding. I was replying to Rags when I said Barry Harris does it, It's the original, and it sound best in my opinion. I guess I did say "it should be." It's like saying "people should grow their hair out longer like they did in the 70's."

    plus a couple people learned about it for the first time and liked it

  6. #55

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    Fine. I think I'll sit this one out. I don't feel like I really fit in here anymore.

  7. #56

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    There's more differences than that.

    Good to know the original. There's some beautiful voice leading and bass line stuff that gets lost in the standard jazz version.

  8. #57

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    Quote Originally Posted by lawson-stone
    I always groan inside when a "Stella by Starlight" thread opens up. Always, always, always, the same tired debate over the first chord, as if nobody knew the "movie version" started on a different chord. The facts are simple. If you play totally solo, play it any way you want. If you expect to play with jam sessions, you better start with the Em7b5 unless the leader says otherwise.

    Believe it or not, "original" changes have little or no authority on how tunes are played. Chords are named variously, orchestrations vary slightly, and hello... this is jazz... we change things. We reharmonizes. We substitute. Sometimes we don't even play the melody on the "head" but just point at it.

    Sorry guys, I had to get that off my chest. I just get so weary of the "what's the first chord in stella, really now..." It's solo guitar, play what you like hearing.
    I don't think anyone was saying Em7b5 is wrong or that one should only play Bo. Rather some of us were offering context. It was news to me until recently, so pay it forward. The Bernstein video and the way he showed the logic of A7 to Cm in terms of the Db diminished scale helped me understand the tune better.

    John

  9. #58

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    Lawson....are you having a pity party today? If so.....snap out of it! You have been such a help and a friend to to me and I appreciate it. What a wonderful contribution you make to this forum....thank you.

    Stella must have been some chick!!! I am having the toughest time with this woman and I want a divorce but I'm gonna keep trying to work it out. Persevere!!!!

  10. #59

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    Speaking of the harmony in stella, I was e-mailing about the end of stella with a guitar mentor of mine-- I discovered the most beautiful and elegant movement built into the series of minor 2-5s. (Not that I invented such a beautiful movement, I truly believe it's implied by the tune).

    I learned a couple years ago that half dim chords want to be arrived to, they need to come from somewhere

    A great place to arrive FROM is a major chord a tritone above half dim chord.

    Ok so on our E-7b5 in the last 8 there, try BbM7, to G minor, to G minor/E (this is your E half dim), then for your A7 chord slide up your half dim chord up a minor 3rd for an altered dominant sound. should be G half dim.

    Here's where it gets cool.

    G half dim is vii-7b5 of Ab. Start on Ab6 and play the same cycle and you should land on F half dim which leads into Gb maj 6

    and we can then do the cycle a 3rd time!

    I do a similar move in the beginning the B section

    the movement to the half dim chord from the major chord is a Barry Harris concept called "major to minor to minor with the 6th in the bass"

  11. #60

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    Quote Originally Posted by John A.
    Cool. Gotta practice that ... in E (ducks)


    John
    How do you lay that out rhythmically, Joe?

    John

  12. #61

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    The Bb major starts where the E-7b5 is in the real book changes. Then the E-7b5 lands where the A7b9 is for two beats, then your G-7b5 (A7alt) on beat 3 of that measure.

    The way I play it is Bb major, contrary motion movement like you've seen on my other vids to land on the E half, then the G half.

    The "major to minor to minor with the 6th in the bass" is essentially a descending bass movement, so I just added contrary motion to that

    The bass movement is like Do-Ti-La(here's 6)-Le-Sol- Se/Fi (your 6 chord with its 6th in the bass)

  13. #62

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    one more thing, its USUAL purpose is going from a major chord to a chord up a major 3rd. So going from Bb to D- (as it does in the beginning of B section)

  14. #63

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    I like this. A lot. I probably ought to get permission from Jeff to post it but it's on YouTube and I'm singing his praises so... this guy plays the ones I wish I'd thought of.

    Hear, look, listen, learn, weep... and say it's nice


  15. #64

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1
    I like this. A lot. I probably ought to get permission from Jeff to post it but it's on YouTube and I'm singing his praises so... this guy plays the ones I wish I'd thought of.

    Hear, look, listen, learn, weep... and say
    I heard, looked, listened, learned, and the wept with envy of his ability. And of course it’s nice, it’s Beau

  16. #65

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758
    it’s Beau
    That was... subtle

    What I like about his lines is that they slip off his fingers and never seem practised. I really couldn't say whether he just did it there and then or if they're worked out before. Magic.

  17. #66
    Stella is a great tune and has a ton of lessons to teach. Those minor 2-5's and back door dominants are great for learning to apply melodic minor among other things.

    I don't have any beef with the Em7b5, but beyond "politics", it's actually kind of cool that that specific 2-5 (Em7b5-A7) resolves 4 different ways in this tune, at least it does on my real book chart. This is one of those that my kids kind of accidentally learned with me, when we did it before. Playing over it, lately, they're humming along. Ha!

    I think it's one that I'll always come back to. Have a love-love relationship with it.

  18. #67

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    Well, I tried


  19. #68

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    man i’d love to see a break down of that move around 15-22 seconds

  20. #69


    Sent from my SM-J727P using Tapatalk

  21. #70

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    Yeah not quite sure what I did there... Basically bouncing between bass and melody notes with some middle voice stuff.

    'I find sleep deprivation helps' Peter Bernstein

  22. #71

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    if sleep deprivation is cool, you can call me miles davis

  23. #72

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    Hey guys,
    a few years ago I made a short video lesson for a student about one of my arrangements of Stella. This is not the same as the version I posted earlier in this thread but there are a few passages that are similar. I'm always trying to find new ways to get thru this tune and interesting voice leading options. This video is on YT but the link is private so let please just keep it in this group. hope some will find a few nice passages in it.


    all the best
    Tim

  24. #73

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    Quote Originally Posted by TLerch
    Hey guys,
    a few years ago I made a short video lesson for a student about one of my arrangements of Stella. This is not the same as the version I posted earlier in this thread but there are a few passages that are similar. I'm always trying to find new ways to get thru this tune and interesting voice leading options. This video is on YT but the link is private so let please just keep it in this group. hope some will find a few nice passages in it.


    all the best
    Tim
    Wow Tim, that was very informative. Thanks so much for sharing that with the group!
    Paul

  25. #74

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    Thanks Paul,
    I hope people don't mind if I post these types of things. I often respond to a students question with a video and then think that maybe the student videos would be interesting to others . if anyone in this group wants the PDF that I'm playing thru here just send me a note that includes your email address and I'll send it to you.

    all the best
    Tim

  26. #75

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    Tim, very generous— thanks alot. BEAUTIFUL and unique treatment of the tune. Can’t wait to sit down and steal your hard work

  27. #76

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    Here 's an improv on this head. Sorry for the sound quality, it's just a portable camera recording.


  28. #77

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alter
    Here 's an improv on this head. Sorry for the sound quality, it's just a portable camera recording.

    Sounds really nice! And I love the tone of your guitar!

  29. #78

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    So here's my effort. I can't seem to make it through even one chorus without some howling mistake, but I still basically don't like this song so I'm giving myself credit for at least challenging an entrenched prejudice, though I didn't overcome it. I'm playing around on this with chromatic bass lines wherever I could find one, and then laying in whatever chord sounded interesting. Results are mixed...


  30. #79

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    Thanks Lawson, your kind support really means a lot to me. Happy to share any of the subs that interest you most

  31. #80

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758
    Thanks Lawson, your kind support really means a lot to me. Happy to share any of the subs that interest you most
    Thank you-it's not my own style of playing, and I doubt I could internalize it, but I do admire it, respect the skill involved in it, and find it fascinating to listen to. It reminds me of composers like Charles Ives, whom I learned to admire when I lived in New England. You really turn that tune inside out, shake all the pieces out, and re-assemble them in a way that is quite surprising and yet still engaging to listen to.

    That one is worth notating, in my opinion, just so it doesn't slip away from you.

  32. #81

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    Charles Ives! what a compliment! thanks again

  33. #82

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758
    Charles Ives! what a compliment! thanks again
    Not exactly a household name even for jazz players!

  34. #83

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    Thanks Paul! I put a lot of thought into each one, my goal is basically to continue making arrangements of how I wish could improvise. I get faster and faster putting them together each time, so I feel I'm getting closer to my goal each time.

    First I make a photo copy of the lead sheet and mask all the chords. Then I look at the changes on my lead sheet and write a simple outline on my blank copy. So, for Stella my working copy said "T1" (turnaround to 1) for the first 4 measures. Then I wrote "BT" (Ballad Turnaround, I made this term up a while ago) for the next 4 bars. The next 3 bars I wrote Mm/6 (Major to Minor to minor with the 6th in the bass).

    I have little pet names for common movements. This way I can memorize harmony, but I'm able to experiment without referencing the lead sheet.

    The game for me is to continually come up for interesting ways to play the same movements

  35. #84

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758
    Thanks Paul! I put a lot of thought into each one, my goal is basically to continue making arrangements of how I wish could improvise. I get faster and faster putting them together each time, so I feel I'm getting closer to my goal each time.

    First I make a photo copy of the lead sheet and mask all the chords. Then I look at the changes on my lead sheet and write a simple outline on my blank copy. So, for Stella my working copy said "T1" (turnaround to 1) for the first 4 measures. Then I wrote "BT" (Ballad Turnaround, I made this term up a while ago) for the next 4 bars. The next 3 bars I wrote Mm/6 (Major to Minor to minor with the 6th in the bass).

    I have little pet names for common movements. This way I can memorize harmony, but I'm able to experiment without referencing the lead sheet.

    The game for me is to continually come up for interesting ways to play the same movements
    Thanks for taking the time to write this Joe.

    So when you say "mask all the chords", you mean you're not able to reference the chart chords at all and you're working with the melody line only and a blank slate for harmony?

  36. #85

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    no, I use the chart to make my outline. So my chart says Db dim 7 for two bars, c-7, F7. Well, to me that's just a turnaround to the 1 chord (I remember the first chord just because it's Stella). Second line is F-7, Bb7, E half dim, Ebmin, That's my "ballad turnaround"Then I have a Bb going to it's 3rd D-7, that calls for Mmm/6

  37. #86

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    Solo Guitar Tune #6 - Stella by Starlight-image1-jpeg
    Attached Images Attached Images Solo Guitar Tune #6 - Stella by Starlight-image1-jpeg 

  38. #87

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    off the cuff first take of stella, kinda lost it at some points. The bridge specifically! Kinda ran out of ideas for that part. That's why recording yourself is great. You get to roast yourself!

  39. #88

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    Hey guys, i definitely want to do laura next (i think it was second place), but if we’re not going straight down our last poll...i like east of the sun, detour ahead, and the folks that live on the hill (keeping with the “not done to death” theme.)

  40. #89

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    Nice playing, Don! can you clarify what you mean by “off the cuff?”

    for insance:

    1. you’ve never played it and are reading a chart
    2. have heard it a million times and trying for the first time
    3. have played it a million times and just seeing what comes out

    thanks!

  41. #90

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758
    Nice playing, Don! can you clarify what you mean by “off the cuff?”

    for insance:

    1. you’ve never played it and are reading a chart
    2. have heard it a million times and trying for the first time
    3. have played it a million times and just seeing what comes out

    thanks!
    Hey Joe! Thanks a lot! I really enjoyed yours too!

    By off the cuff I mean, I've played the tune quite a lot of times and it's more of a train of thought, mixed with some small things that I use every now and then. The idea is that I sit down and try and filter what I know e.g the song (melody and chords), harmony/movements and try to make music. After I play through it once like I did in the video I then sat down and looked at what worked and what didn't, what could be better for next time or what other options I had that didn't occur to me whilst playing through.

    So I end up developing what I have for the tune each time. It's a new process that I'm trying so the tunes I've worked on aren't a lot yet. I basically imagine I'm doing a solo tune on a gig. Whatever happens happens, and it'll be better next time hopefully!

    Cheers,
    Ozzy

  42. #91

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758
    Solo Guitar Tune #6 - Stella by Starlight-image1-jpeg

    Thanks for posting this Joe. Very instructional!