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  1. #76

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    Quote Originally Posted by kris
    I know this guitarist.
    But Donna doesn't have to be played that fast. Parker's version is slower - recorded it in the '40s.
    Jazz education has developed a lot and the young musicians are very perfect and fast, but they learn from good role models - Charlie Parker.
    Ben Enunson plays very modern musical phrases that he thinks of himself, but Donna Lee is composed by Charlie Parker.
    Playing Donna Lee is a kind of tribute to Parker / a genius who died too early /.
    Except it’s obviously a Miles Davis tune

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  3. #77

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    Ragman 1
    The technique of playing acoustic guitar with the thumb is very limited.
    I don't know if there is a Donna Lee version of Wes.
    Wes was a very fast guitarist, but would he be able to play Donna Lee with thumb quickly?

  4. #78

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    Quote Originally Posted by Christian Miller
    Except it’s obviously a Miles Davis tune
    Was Aebersold wrong?
    How old was Miles when he was recording it with Parker?
    Wiki:
    "Donna Lee" is a bebop jazz standard attributed to Charlie Parker, although Miles Davis has also claimed authorship

  5. #79

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    Quote Originally Posted by Christian Miller
    Except it’s obviously a Miles Davis tune
    don't you know Miles?

  6. #80

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    Donna Lee
    Attached Images Attached Images

  7. #81

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peterson;[URL="tel:1148044"
    1148044[/URL]]This is supposed to be fun and honestly, comments like that spoils it. The only “right” tempo is the one anyone feel like playing. I was quite glad to post a slow first attempt.
    Now I’m not, instead I’m glad this is virtual.

    Anyway...

    Well played, your feel was great and comfortable!

  8. #82

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    Quote Originally Posted by Christian Miller
    Hard to do on guitar.
    Very, but, like I said, some people can do this stuff, others can't. Like me, it's just not in the genes or something.

    Was that 6.45 am or pm? Maybe you've got to get up really early

  9. #83

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    Anyway, just to prove I don't hate the tune, Peterson, or anybody else, or this jam thing, or anything else, here's my version. You'll recognise the beginning. It doesn't last :-)


  10. #84

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    I was going to call her Donut Lee, but sense prevailed

  11. #85

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1
    Anyway, just to prove I don't hate the tune, Peterson, or anybody else, or this jam thing, or anything else, here's my version. You'll recognise the beginning. It doesn't last :-)

    If you played first phrase in comfortable tempo...you can do it all.
    Donna Lee is like an improvised head.Don't waste time playing over chords.

  12. #86

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    I've never heard anybody call Back Home Again in Indiana.

    It's always Donna Lee. So, it's about the head.

  13. #87

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    If you played first phrase in comfortable tempo...you can do it all.
    Donna Lee is like an improvised head.Don't waste time playing over chords.
    You don't understand, Kris, I don't care if I can do it or not. It's an obstacle race for people with spider fingers and lots of stamina. Why do I need to do it? I don't. All that struggle for what? So I get my gold star? So I can show Mommy and Daddy? It's too childish.

    Of course I could do it if I put my mind to it but I don't need to. I get a million times more joy from playing over the chords than I ever, ever will from being able to play this, or Giant Steps, or any of fast those things at breakneck speed. I'm not going to do any jazz gigs, I'm not making a CD, or anything else. I'm just here because I like playing music. I don't have to prove anything to anybody.

    If I DID want to do any of that I definitely wouldn't try to do it in a week, either, it's ridiculous. I'd take it away and perfect it by myself, however long it took. But I don't, thank god; there's no point.

    So I just do what I do. Anyway, who knows what will happen between now and Friday? Maybe I get a big bang on the head in an accident and wake up speaking ten languages and being a bebop master. Then everyone will be jealous!

  14. #88

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    I don't know if this is novel enough to bear repeating, but one of the wisest things I've heard is this, "everyone has his/her own relationship with music".

    In jazz guitar forums it seems as if there is, at least vaguely, a shared idea of a goal - which seems to be to become a "well rounded jazz musician". Maybe I'm overstating that.

    But, not everybody has an interest in that or maybe even the same idea as to what it means.

    My two all time favorite jazz guitarists are Jim Hall and Wes. I doubt that either one of them had much interest in playing Donna Lee at Charlie Parker's tempo (around 220 bpm, I think).

    As far as Donna Lee goes, my interest is limited to improving my ability to play the head. Why? Because every now and then at a jam somebody will start playing the head and everybody joins in. Terrible reason. Maybe it's the "why climb Everest?" answer, "because it's there".

  15. #89

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1
    You don't understand, Kris, I don't care if I can do it or not. It's an obstacle race for people with spider fingers and lots of stamina. Why do I need to do it? I don't. All that struggle for what? So I get my gold star? So I can show Mommy and Daddy? It's too childish.

    Of course I could do it if I put my mind to it but I don't need to. I get a million times more joy from playing over the chords than I ever, ever will from being able to play this, or Giant Steps, or any of fast those things at breakneck speed. I'm not going to do any jazz gigs, I'm not making a CD, or anything else. I'm just here because I like playing music. I don't have to prove anything to anybody.

    If I DID want to do any of that I definitely wouldn't try to do it in a week, either, it's ridiculous. I'd take it away and perfect it by myself, however long it took. But I don't, thank god; there's no point.

    So I just do what I do. Anyway, who knows what will happen between now and Friday? Maybe I get a big bang on the head in an accident and wake up speaking ten languages and being a bebop master. Then everyone will be jealous!
    OK...
    Oh gosh, today is Sunday and I've been playing Donna Lee all day and only the head...What's a day...:-)

  16. #90

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    In fact, it's a brilliant piece.
    You can play it every day as an exercise.
    You have to be precise and you have to figure out mistakes.
    Donna Lee teaches jazz phrasing, the more you play it, the more addictive it becomes.
    Probably the same is with Confirmation.
    Charlie Parker is forever alive.

  17. #91

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar
    I've never heard anybody call Back Home Again in Indiana.

    It's always Donna Lee. So, it's about the head.
    It is simply a showy piece and it will appeal to all kinds of jazz jams.

  18. #92

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    Quote Originally Posted by kris
    In fact, it's a brilliant piece.
    You can play it every day as an exercise.
    You have to be precise and you have to figure out mistakes.
    Donna Lee teaches jazz phrasing, the more you play it, the more addictive it becomes.
    Probably the same is with Confirmation.
    Charlie Parker is forever alive.
    Well said. It's a great exercise in a number of ways. It has value as a prime example of a bop approach to music. A great example of melody across bar lines, among other attributes.

    It also has value as material for which to solve technical problems with fingering and picking. I've been working on it for years, now and then, and still, in this thread that suggestion by Danil about how to play the chromatic line changed how I'll be playing it in the future. It is a good example of how a fingering/picking which works at a moderate tempo may need to be reworked to go to a faster tempo.

    It's also interesting to see how other people approach the fingering. I'm not sure that any two people do it the same way.

  19. #93

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    95% yakety-yak in this thread, gotta be a record! I dunno but I see these jams more as a kind of put your sh*t out there and be done with it sort of thing. Don't like / know the tune? Too technically demanding? Pass - easy.

    This tune is all about the head, how are you not going to play it?

    The other 5%, actual takes posted, I liked Kris's phrasing on the nylon string, though not crazy about the tone and the funky take was fun, in the pocket. Thanks for that.

  20. #94

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  21. #95

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    One of the most interesting interpretations of Donna Lee:

    Last edited by kris; 09-26-2021 at 05:19 PM.

  22. #96

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    Smile and good night:




  23. #97

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1
    You don't understand, Kris, I don't care if I can do it or not. It's an obstacle race for people with spider fingers and lots of stamina. Why do I need to do it? I don't. All that struggle for what? So I get my gold star? So I can show Mommy and Daddy? It's too childish.

    Of course I could do it if I put my mind to it but I don't need to. I get a million times more joy from playing over the chords than I ever, ever will from being able to play this, or Giant Steps, or any of fast those things at breakneck speed. I'm not going to do any jazz gigs, I'm not making a CD, or anything else. I'm just here because I like playing music. I don't have to prove anything to anybody.

    If I DID want to do any of that I definitely wouldn't try to do it in a week, either, it's ridiculous. I'd take it away and perfect it by myself, however long it took. But I don't, thank god; there's no point.

    So I just do what I do. Anyway, who knows what will happen between now and Friday? Maybe I get a big bang on the head in an accident and wake up speaking ten languages and being a bebop master. Then everyone will be jealous!
    I completely understand your position. I also agree that the head can be viewed similarly as running a sub-6 minute mile (for adults our age). There are many merits worth striving and attaining in this music but it is not paramount to do so. I’ve avoided Donna Lee. (the head) all this time and I’m using this V-jam as the catalyst to get to work. Everything before me is not null and void because I didn’t learn the head.

    I think the spirit that Peterson put forward is spot on and yes this tune will be called at a jam session. You are also right that others are putting too much into the tackling of the head in an improv thread but hey, if someone’s bringing Donna Lee into the mix it deserves a cursory discussion at minimum.

    All in all the session doesn’t define us. Better yet, the music we are serving is a music born from strife and we can’t be surprised that elements of competition rise to fray here and there, but they are just pieces of the puzzle and not the full picture. In a nutshell, it’s all good.

  24. #98

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    Quote Originally Posted by kris
    In fact, it's a brilliant piece.
    You can play it every day as an exercise.
    You have to be precise and you have to figure out mistakes.
    Donna Lee teaches jazz phrasing, the more you play it, the more addictive it becomes.
    Probably the same is with Confirmation.
    Charlie Parker is forever alive.
    I agree. Almost the whole bebop language is in Donna Lee and Confirmation


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  25. #99

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    I will just say that the time I invested in learning the head and Parkers solo and getting the tempo up to about 200 was one of the best, most satisfying, and musically fruitful things I’ve done. Right up there with learning a bunch of the Jimmy Raney solos from that Aebersold set. Broke me out of so many cliches and dead ends.

    It’s like running or weight lifting. Not useful in themselves but they build up capacity for other things.


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  26. #100

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    I would say that there's a bunch of guys who couldn't run a mile, let alone in under 6 minutes, but would not think twice about playing Donna Lee at, say, minimum 180 bpm? And only because at slower speeds it's not the same tune. It's not a pissing contest, or shouldn't be.

    Regarding the head, even if you choose not to play it, I think any subsequent improvisation is going to need to reflect its phrasing and or intensity, in order to sound "right".

    Discussion on performance, tips etc, are great and, not being a bona fide jazzer, I've learned a lot from (comments on) the earlier jams. I've spent a lot of my free time recently exploring (how to play) II V I's for the first time, believe it or not.