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  1. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1
    So how do you stop it sounding sad? Not that I mind sad, but just asking. Do it fast? Play it weird like Fred Hersch? Thing is, the main tonality is minor, especially the descending Fm line and the bridge.

    What do you suggest? Even better, show us with your version!

    (But I don't think my latest version was sad. That was the point!)
    There’s something about your recording technique that tinges all of your takes with a bit of nostalgic melancholy. Acoustic guitar, quiet, a bit of white noise, plenty of room ambience as if recorded with a distant mic, contemplative tempos.

    Partial aside:

    Reminds me of this project by an artist who goes by the name Caretaker. He took a bunch of old, forgotten swing-era jazz records and presented them in six parts as a way of chronicling the descent of a patient into the horrors of dementia:

    “Released from 2016 to 2019, its six albums depict the stages of dementia. It distorts the music as each stage passes. The first three consist of big band records, while the fourth and fifth stages are sound collages of them.”

    I read somewhere he was originally influenced by music in the ballroom scene from the movie The Shining. It is a pretty cool project—I’ve listened to a bit of it, but to be honest it kind of creeps me out so I haven’t tried to listen to the whole thing.


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  3. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple_Jazz
    I don’t know if it’s because I listened on my phone or what but it was very hard to hear you over he backing track and there was no meat to the overdrive which contributed to burying you in the background. Having said that, awesome job!! Loved the head and really dug how you handled the A section, great movement.
    I agree. I thought the piano in the backing track was too loud. I'm aware that on Aebersold records the piano is panned hard, but I didn't have an obvious way to pan the playback (I have to figure that out for next time). Since the clip got my ideas for the tune out, I posted it anyway.

    edit: I found a Windows Device Settings screen with L and R sliders. At that point I found out that the youtube track is recorded in mono. So, I didn't find a way to reduce the volume of the piano. Suggestions would be appreciated!

    I'm not sure how to make the overdrive "meatier". It's not a sound I use a lot, but I have one patch programmed in my pedalboard for some big band arrangements that call for it in the charts. More gain, I suppose? This patch models an overdriven amp (probably a Boogie). I didn't use the Distortion module in the ME80. Maybe more treble from the amp?
    Last edited by rpjazzguitar; 05-08-2021 at 03:34 PM.

  4. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1
    So how do you stop it sounding sad? Not that I mind sad, but just asking. Do it fast? Play it weird like Fred Hersch? Thing is, the main tonality is minor, especially the descending Fm line and the bridge.

    What do you suggest? Even better, show us with your version!

    (But I don't think my latest version was sad. That was the point!)
    I don't think major/minor tonality is the defining factor in sad/happy. I think mood also depends on how you play and (to a degree) production. At one extreme: slow, legato, sparse note density, more emphasis on lower pitches, straight/single time, few triplets, half notes or whole notes in the bass = sadder. At the opposite extreme: lots of bebop style asymmetric and rhythmically offset phrases and bebop triplets, staccato phrasing, walking bassline, lighter reverb, harder swing and/or more double time, greater emphasis of higher pitches, more 1/8's and 1/16's = happier (or at least more excited) mood. I mean Beautiful Love or What Is This Thing Called Love are both minor (though WITTCL resolves ends on a major), but typically fairly uptempo, played boppish-ly and not usually described as sad.

  5. #29

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    Pre covid, I went to hear Robert Glasper at the Blue Note in NYC.

    At one point, I thought I heard some references to Stella. Very subtle.

    Later, he actually stated part of the melody more clearly. I don't think it was as written. And, it was only a portion of the tune.

    They soloed only on a different section of the tune. Iirc, it was 8 bars near the end.

    The lesson: playing the tune the way the composer intended is one option, but there are others. I know people who are doctrinaire about not varying the composer's melody an iota, but I'm no longer one of them.

  6. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar
    Pre covid, I went to hear Robert Glasper at the Blue Note in NYC.

    At one point, I thought I heard some references to Stella. Very subtle.

    Later, he actually stated part of the melody more clearly. I don't think it was as written. And, it was only a portion of the tune.

    They soloed only on a different section of the tune. Iirc, it was 8 bars near the end.

    The lesson: playing the tune the way the composer intended is one option, but there are others. I know people who are doctrinaire about not varying the composer's melody an iota, but I'm no longer one of them.
    I saw Steve Slagle (outdoors) a couple of weeks ago. He played "Moments Notice" with a different set of notes on the same phrasing over the first half of the tune. I talked to him afterward (he lives down the street from me and I know him socially) and he said that he's played it so many times that he plays different notes all the time to keep the tune interesting to him. I play melodies differently from the original all the time, but in my case they're mistakes.
    Last edited by John A.; 05-08-2021 at 06:36 PM.

  7. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by John A.
    I saw Steve Slagle (outdoors) a couple of weeks ago. He played "Moments Notice" with a different set of notes on the same phrasing over the first half of the tune. I talked to him afterward (he lives down the street from me and I know him socially) and he said that he's played it so many times that he plays different notes all the time to keep the tune interesting to him. I play melodies differently from the original all the time, but in my case they're mistakes.
    Hello Steve! I've played Cor De Rosa and Exits and Flags - two tunes he recorded in 1986 with the astonishing bassist Nico Assumpcao and guitarist Ricardo Silveira. I've lost track of his more recent work, unfortunately, and really should catch up.

  8. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar
    Hello Steve! I've played Cor De Rosa and Exits and Flags - two tunes he recorded in 1986 with the astonishing bassist Nico Assumpcao and guitarist Ricardo Silveira. I've lost track of his more recent work, unfortunately, and really should catch up.
    He has two recent releases, one with a trio and the other with a larger group. The show was in a sort of amphitheater-like spot in Central Park with the trio. He sounded great.

    John

  9. #33

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    Here's a take I did. I've always liked this tune, although there are other Monk compositions that I think are more idiosyncratic to his style. It was written for Bud Powell!


  10. #34

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    Excellent, Alter! Great lines and lots of variety.

  11. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alter
    Here's a take I did. I've always liked this tune, although there are other Monk compositions that I think are more idiosyncratic to his style. It was written for Bud Powell!

    This recording is the best of all Virual Jam recordings so far.
    A long solo with an excellent sense and taste, at an extremely professional level.
    A modest man who plays the guitar very well.
    Congratulations Mr. Alter.

  12. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar
    Pre covid, I went to hear Robert Glasper at the Blue Note in NYC.

    At one point, I thought I heard some references to Stella. Very subtle.

    Later, he actually stated part of the melody more clearly. I don't think it was as written. And, it was only a portion of the tune.

    They soloed only on a different section of the tune. Iirc, it was 8 bars near the end.

    The lesson: playing the tune the way the composer intended is one option, but there are others. I know people who are doctrinaire about not varying the composer's melody an iota, but I'm no longer one of them.
    Even though your particular tone and style on this wasn’t my cup of tea I did enjoy your cracking open the melody. Gently making fun of/with the tune. I totally agree that esp. in jazz we are not slaves to just one performance of the melody even if it’s the composer’s.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

  13. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by lawson-stone
    I totally agree that esp. in jazz we are not slaves to just one performance of the melody even if it’s the composer’s.
    Sometimes it's even difficult to find a recorded version that sticks to the melody as written to just learn the basic version...

  14. #38

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    Thanks for the kind words. If I was to critic myself, there's quite a bit of repetition in the solo at times, plus a bit too chromaticism on various lines (I do enjoy "cleaner" playing).

  15. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alter
    Here's a take I did. I've always liked this tune, although there are other Monk compositions that I think are more idiosyncratic to his style. It was written for Bud Powell!

    Love the ES sound, A! They got so hot . . . I almost had to turn my speakers down. Five stars.
    Play live . . . Marinero

  16. #40

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    Yea... Great take Alter, I agree with Kris. It was fun to listen to.

    I would also agree with you about the content thing... but it was still cool. We're not at a gig etc.

    The only thing I would say... to elevate your solo, get noticed etc... have a shape in mind... when or as you play. By that I mean, something needs to help bring us... the audience, somewhere. Just rambling on is great for this forum etc... but through some musical concepts..... you need to take your solo somewhere and then back. Playing head, soloing then the head again.... is not the goal, right.

    Could be as simple as standard 2/3rds of the way through.... Have a high point, where you've been heading and can come back from. You sound like you have pretty good chops so even just some articulated double stops or something that breaks the 8th notes , da-ba-doo-ba thing, ( it gets old), with some energy that make us feel like we went or are going somewhere.

    You don't need to change anything... and it's still cool. I'm no critic etc...

    Please take my comments as positive, I dig all your posts.

  17. #41

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    Great job Alter: over 5 mins long and you kept my attention the whole time. I didn't have time to hear the others properly.

    I don't know if you realize Reg, but a lot of people here (definitely me) are probably pushed for time and are not in a position to "craft" a solo in the way you allude to. So, we just put something out there.

  18. #42

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    Forgive a second post -- different approach.


  19. #43

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    Awesome Alter..interspersed with some Wes chordings ... Majestic

  20. #44

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    Here's another one, this time with a backing track, trying to add a somewhat different color and feel from my first. I also thought about some of the things said on this thread about varying the content more, taking liberties with the head and trying not to fall into too much do-be-do-be-do-be unbroken strings of 1/8 notes.. And I had fun with the track, which is pretty funky.

    Last edited by John A.; 05-09-2021 at 11:10 PM.

  21. #45

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    Better late than never?
    Was trying to keep it short and stick to the original melody.
    You guys are hard acts to follow...

  22. #46

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    rp: that was wonderful.
    John: very daring and unusual.

  23. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter C
    Great job Alter: over 5 mins long and you kept my attention the whole time. I didn't have time to hear the others properly.

    I don't know if you realize Reg, but a lot of people here (definitely me) are probably pushed for time and are not in a position to "craft" a solo in the way you allude to. So, we just put something out there.
    yea Peter.... I get it.... I don't have any time either... and probable should not make comments. And tried to make comments not offensive or mean in spirit... But... this forum is about as easy and safe as it gets...I enjoy Alters playing and his posts, he's a wonderful player.... Sometimes it's difficult to hear or see aspects of one's playing. And many don't ever get taught how to craft solos... or have the time to even think about the concept. And what happens is we become good at what we do, if we don't start, as in the case of crafting solos, we become good at not crafting solos. I'm using term "crafting" to imply musically organizing one's solo...

    Examples, as Altered said, he didn't like his use of too many chromatic note... that is part of crafting a solo. Chromatic notes imply... Harmony. When one used too many chromatic notes... the harmony can become undefined, muddy from mixing too many harmonic references.

    Examples of Crafting... (in no specific order)
    1) Harmonic Plan... make choices as to what changes your using, and imply them 1st time through. This will help one be able to help shape your solo... lots of techniques, tension release, set up extensions for effect...
    2) melodic development... the melody and/or your melodic ideas, Again set up your targets so they will have a effect when used and will also help define your Shape. Simple techniques, such as lines that move up... to the target and then back down . Or use of melodic and octave transpositions... etc...
    3) Same thing, but with use of Rhythm...
    4) Energy, all the simple physical BS

    All these, (and as many more as you choose), are used to help shape what we play.

    The use of these techniques are part of Performance techniques.

    There's nothing wrong with just putting something out, it's all good. But if we start doing something, like the crafting thing.... we will get better. That's all I'm trying to do.

  24. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter C
    Great job Alter: over 5 mins long and you kept my attention the whole time. I didn't have time to hear the others properly.

    I don't know if you realize Reg, but a lot of people here (definitely me) are probably pushed for time and are not in a position to "craft" a solo in the way you allude to. So, we just put something out there.
    I interpret Reg's comment as a suggestion to think about the solo as a whole, not as advice to compose it in advance. That doesn't take extra time; it just takes some attention. E.g., decide how many choruses you're going to play, where you introduce new motifs, where the peaks and plateaus are, and how hand off to the next soloist or get back to the head.
    Last edited by John A.; 05-10-2021 at 11:32 AM.

  25. #49

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    My take: quite vanilla I guess and not overly sophisticated but that's where I am at right now so that's what I can do. It's a great tune and I love the head. I will work some more on this in th future.



  26. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by TOMMO
    My take: quite vanilla I guess and not overly sophisticated but that's where I am at right now so that's what I can do. It's a great tune and I love the head. I will work some more on this in th future.


    Nice one. Good phrasing, some cool ideas, great tone. I like what you did on the head a the end harmonizing against the piano counter-melody.