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  1. #31
    destinytot Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Jeff View Post
    And by the way Stevie's Songs in the Key of Life is a virtual encyclopedia of styles from the 40's-70's--gospel, RnB, rock, soul, fusion, big band, you name it it's there. My favorite SW album and one I still listen to all the time.
    Couldn't resist the pun

  2. #32
    Stevie Wonder is the jedi master grand master sensei of juicy modern harmony. I love Mozart, Beethoven, Bach, Bartok, Ravel, Debussy, Ellington, Kenton...

    but Stevie...

    Stevie's on a whole nother list of greatness. Those harmonies are ridiculously tasty.

  3. #33
    destinytot Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by jster View Post
    So, first question: Can you really write a great key change without a great melody? Be honest now!
    I think you can start from great changes and make a good melody: lyrical, melodic improvisers do it all the time - I'm positive that not everyone can hear it.

    Just my speculation, but I'm starting to think the key change is great (pleasing but unexpected?) because the melody is simple - but effective. (A simple punchline that sends you the wrong weigh.)

    Quote Originally Posted by jster View Post
    Second question: If so, can we get a master table of key change progressions that goes beyond the cliches? Can't be that many possibilities can there? Or are there?
    There's the old saying "Show me your friends and I'll tell you who you are"; I think it applies to changes you like. It's all knowledge of self - and its value is that it puts you in the driving seat. It seems to me that the 'master table' arises from one's own 'research'.

    I've studied a lot of Tom Jobim, and I doubt anyone appreciates or admires his music more than I. But - when it comes to beautiful changes - I think the Brazilian 'moderns' rule. There seems to be a lot of - er - 'cross-fertilisation'...

    Eumir Deodato and Moacir Santos will always be huge for me - and the so too are songs by Caetano Veloso, Milton Nascimento, Toninho Horta, Djavan, Ivan Lins. Here's are some faves:

    Superlative (but short) George Benson solo:


    Those vocals get a hallelujah from me:


    Genius and vision:


    Maça (Apple) - a metaphor about values; "I turned round and came back to Rio"


    Simple but effective melody and subs;
    Last edited by destinytot; 12-20-2015 at 01:35 PM. Reason: clarity

  4. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Stevie Wonder is the jedi master grand master sensei of juicy modern harmony. I love Mozart, Beethoven, Bach, Bartok, Ravel, Debussy, Ellington, Kenton...

    but Stevie...

    Stevie's on a whole nother list of greatness. Those harmonies are ridiculously tasty.
    Agreed.

    And a little closer to Classical is " All in Love is Fair ."

    What is NOT fair is Stevie gets to be a Genius and I don't .Grrrr.
    I noticed that a lot of Jazz Guys like Herbie Hancock have serious respect for Stevie's Jazz Chops .

    I was trying to remember that instrumental Fusion tune called " Contusion" featuring Michael Sembello on Guitar..( who also did the song "Maniac " I think ( versatility or what?).

  5. #35
    destinytot Guest

    Maça sketch

    Quote Originally Posted by destinytot View Post
    Maça (Apple) - a metaphor about values; "I turned round and came back to Rio"
    Had a bash at it:
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by destinytot; 12-20-2015 at 04:13 PM. Reason: add mp3 (soundcloud link not working)

  6. #36
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
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    Hatfield, PA. Have also lived in Riverdale, NY, Brooklyn, NY, The Hague, Netherlandd
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    I like the places the bridge goes in Visions. I don't know that it modulates exactly, more like it wanders then comes home like the prodigal son. Reminds me of some of Benny Golson's tunes like Along Came Betty or Whisper Not with the half-diminished pivot chords. When I have some energy I'll post the changes. Took it off the other day.

    Then there is this wonderful surprise at the end of You and I: The tune is in F. When he sings 'You and IIIIII...' that last time he flips very cleverly to the key of Ab.

    Off the top of my head, away from the guitar: First measure Db Maj7 (3 beats), Db Maj7 C Min7 Bb Min7 (8th note triplets on last beat) 2nd measure: Ab Maj7 (3 beats), Ab Maj7 G Min7 F min7 (8th note triplets, last beat) 3rd measure: Bb/C (2 beats w/ritard starting) C7 (b9? 2 beats w/fermata) // F maj7 Fine

    Beautiful stuff, and his voice still gives me chills...
    Last edited by fasstrack; 09-11-2016 at 04:46 PM.

  7. #37
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
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    Now that I think about it, another nice little deviation---though not a modulation---is in the bridge of If It's Magic: after it goes to Amin for a bit it resolves to E Maj 7 rather than the expected and common E7.

    Little touches like that make him the songwriter he is...

  8. #38
    Join Date
    May 2010
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    Mystic CT
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    Stevie Wonder is a composer, and a songwriter, and combines them magically. They work as well as Gershwin tunes done instrumentally, they're fun and challenging to play, and they are, for the most part, sublime. Even a pop trifle like "I Just Called..." has a beautifully composed ending that we await somewhat impatiently while he's murdering a 2-5-1. He is a sly, funny, inspired dude.

  9. #39
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
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    Hatfield, PA. Have also lived in Riverdale, NY, Brooklyn, NY, The Hague, Netherlandd
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    Do you guys know Seems so Long, from Music of my Mind (with the great Buzz Feiten)?

    No big modulation, but do you remember Seems So Long, from Music of my Mind? In the B section (where he sings 'and it seems---so long), he does like a Maj7th to a 4 dominant, repeats it, then does it in a remote key and smoothly returns to the home key with Min 7 Min7 up a step Maj7 up a half-step, then a pivot with Min7 on the same root to make a II to a 5 dominant. Pure Stevie, and the song is a gem no one plays. One of his better lyrics, too...
    Last edited by fasstrack; 09-13-2016 at 11:22 AM.

  10. #40
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
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    Winnipeg Manitoba Canada
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    been exploring this song for a while -


  11. #41
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Hatfield, PA. Have also lived in Riverdale, NY, Brooklyn, NY, The Hague, Netherlandd
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    Quote Originally Posted by WillMbCdn5 View Post
    been exploring this song for a while -

    That was my 'money tune' when I was a street player...

  12. #42
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Location
    San Leandro, CA
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    1
    Hi, I'm new to this forum and stumbled upon in Googling for information on the chords in Stevie Wonder's "Overjoyed". I play both piano and guitar but on a very recreational level (the sports equivalent of someone who "throws the 'ol football around" on weekends). But my ear has a thirst and radar for unique and amazing chord theory and I too have been mesmerized by what happens chord wise in "Overjoyed" so I really appreciate the discussions at the start of this thread. Thank you for that. I also could care less for pop music but every now and then I'll hear some clever chord work in one fleeting instance within a pop song and wonder if it was the work of a bored and repressed session musician during the recording of that record.

    Anyway, back to "Overjoyed," my confusion is what is happening during the intro when he goes from a Dbmaj9-C9-Bmaj9-C9-Dbmaj9-Bmaj9 to end on a Bb and then go into the song. On the one hand it seems perfectly normal on paper, as these are all chords in the key of Eb major, and he's basically ending the intro on the dominant, but in the recording it sounds far more complex and haunting than that. I'm curious what all your thoughts are on this intro, from the perspective of professional musicians.

  13. #43
    I’m not a pro, but what I hear (translated to the guitar) is this:
    x433xx Db6
    x323xx C7
    x213xx Bmaj7
    x323xx C7

    second time it goes on down to
    x103xx Bb

    So essentially a chromatic descent in the bass and middle voice while preserving the top Bb note unchanged.

  14. #44
    He's playing with function. F/A can be seen/heard as a V6/V in Eb (indeed this is how I heard the F when it first appeared), but F is also the IV of C major. Really, the F is functioning as a IV going to V in C major. This is confirmed immediately when the G/B is heard.

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