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  1. #1

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    Our standard for Dec 2018 will be Don't Blame Me (Dorothy Fields, Jimmy McHugh, 1932).

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    Jazz Standards Songs and Instrumentals (Don't Blame Me)

    Hope everyone's enjoying the season? I already bought myself a Christmas present!

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    do you guys all play d-7b5 instead of d-7?
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  4. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758 View Post
    do you guys all play d-7b5 instead of d-7?
    Which bar? Bar 5? "I'm under your spell"? If so, yes.

  5. #4

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    Some do, some don't. If you mean bar 5, some have Dm7b5/G7b9 and others just Dm7/G7. But all of them have Em7b5/A7b9 following (I believe so anyway).

    Actually same with bar 3. Some use Dm7/G7, others Dm7b5/G7b9. Also, some use the b9 both times, others just G7.

    Choose which you prefer!

  6. #5

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    cool, it was in all the charts i looked at, but i’m thinking it wasn’t the original. i actually ordered the original sheet music yesterday (i like doing this if i’ll really be digging into a tune).
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  7. #6

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    Often the actual original music (straight from the composer's hands) isn't what a lot of people, including the famous pros, play. It's also often piano or orchestral so no nice convenient chord symbols!

  8. #7

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    You can find the original (or other early) recordings on YouTube. (We have it so easy these days!) Why trust the sheet music? Plus the research can be enlightening.

  9. #8

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    Quite a lot of the time it told me that many of the original versions sounded outdated, at least to our ears, and what they were doing nowadays was actually much better.

    That's no criticism of things as they were, it's just that things inevitably evolve, mature, progress, evolve, what you will. So change is usually good. Not always, but usually.

  10. #9

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    i like to see the original chords so it’s easier to make my own harmony without thinking subs of subs. rags you should know by now my harmonic choices arn’t conservative. was just inquiring if it was an integral part pf the tune, eg Night and Day
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  11. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758 View Post
    if it was an integral part pf the tune
    If what was?

  12. #11

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    the minor two five going to major, and my example was night and day in which that is a defining characteristic of the song. Now that I’ve done some more listening it seems that the d-7b5 is just a sub some people choose to use. i asked at the point where a bunch of charts (including the “vanilla” changes) i looked at used this sub. it’s fine, it sounds cool, it must have just become “common parlance.”
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  13. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758 View Post
    the minor two five going to major, and my example was night and day in which that is a defining characteristic of the song. Now that I’ve done some more listening it seems that the d-7b5 is just a sub some people choose to use. i asked at the point where a bunch of charts (including the “vanilla” changes) i looked at used this sub. it’s fine, it sounds cool, it must have just become “common parlance.”
    Right, Joe. Sorry, I'd completely forgotten about it all. So what will you use finally? Probably most versions use it in bar 5 but it's whether it's used in bar 3 as well that seems to be the thing. More difficult to solo with, you've got to keep changing the notes all the time.

  14. #13

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    no worries, it has been quite a while since i posted any music. I’ve shifted gears from arranging to more improv based comping and single line soloing. I’m hoping i can get comfortable enough with this tune to post improv here for the first time.

    if i was doing an arrangment, there’s no telling what i’d play there. For my backing I’ll just have d-7 because it is more...malleable?

    anyway, we’ll see how this goes; i’m a little nervous to be honest, especially due to my limited practice time. I’ll be listening to a lot of different recordings of it; maybe that will help
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  15. #14

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    December 2018 - Don't Blame Me-a70bb13d-a8c4-4eca-bd0e-715addd1aa30-jpgDecember 2018 - Don't Blame Me-9d667574-1040-45ce-b8d9-19b2aff67969-jpgif anyone is curious
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  16. #15

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    so it looks like the -7b5 does have some history! (f-6=d-7b5)
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  17. #16

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    You're saying that version has the m6/m7b5 in the 3rd bar. So go for it then. And hurry up, it's almost Xmas.

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758 View Post
    so it looks like the -7b5 does have some history! (f-6=d-7b5)
    Learning to exploit the equivalence between F-6, D-7b5 and rootless Bb9 (or other chords with those intervals) has helped me in the past few years. Thinking of them as basically the same thing helps me explore different chord voicings.

    Here are cleaned up & de-skewed versions of your charts that are a little easier to read. They’re good charts. Whether to play D-7b5 or D-7 seems like a matter of taste. I think prefer latter since it’s brighter, but both work with the melody. And the G-6 I always think of as E-7b5.

    December 2018 - Don't Blame Me-1d8d9f6f-cd51-4262-b3ab-0b827e98eeb2-jpeg December 2018 - Don't Blame Me-f471ed71-fb87-4355-b541-3f02a1059bc3-jpeg

    My first stab at the tune. Actually, I’ve worked on it before, but it’s been a few years.


    (I deleted a second version.) I’m not sure what to do with the tune. I guess it’s time to listen to a few recordings.
    I also need to hold back the tempo!
    Last edited by KirkP; 12-10-2018 at 08:39 PM.

  19. #18

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    Well done, Kirk, pretty swingy as usual :-) I was playing with it the other day as a swing solo and I was using almost exactly the same shapes as you were.

    Mind you, I wouldn't touch that sort of music score with a big pole, of course. We all know the chord diagrams are nonsense (the piano IS playing a Dm7b5 because it's a D-based chord). Also, there's no indication at all of who actually arranged it for piano. I don't know how it worked in those days. Did they get a score direct from the composer or just get one of their in-house piano arrangers to do it? We don't know.

    There is a version of it online which has a link to what looks like that particular score:

    "Don't Blame Me" from 'Sugar Babies' Sheet Music in C Major (transposable) - Download & Print - SKU: MN0037665



    The song was written for 'Clowns In Clover' (1932) and appeared in the film 'Dinner At Eight' (1933). Anyway, there are lots of the old records on YouTube done in various ways.

    The jazzers did it too, Monk, Hawkins, Teddy Wilson (that's an interesting one), etc.

    But Barney Kessel did a version:



    Personally, I've done about eight videos and fifteen audios already on this tune. I tend to avoid CM solos because I haven't the patience for it. Apart from anything else I tend to hit on something interesting and promptly forget it! So I tend not to do them, it's too much bother.

    The single-string stuff is far easier but after a while it becomes tedious, to be honest (it's a pretty easy tune) so that's when I start experimenting and it goes weird :-)

  20. #19

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    Kirk, I've just seen your second version. Great! Thanks for that :-)

  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1 View Post
    Kirk, I've just seen your second version. Great! Thanks for that :-)
    I removed the Telecaster take this morning as it wasn’t doing it for me. Maybe I can do something better later.
    In my listening this morning (while doing chores!) I found a couple of special versions:
    - Ahmad Jamal, with Ray Crawford on guitar doing his wonderful bongo thing
    - Coleman Hawkins
    - Art Tatum
    - Jessica Williams
    When searching for this tune, it helps to add -swift to eliminate most of hits on the Taylor Swift tune.

    The default chart in iReal Pro is also good. The few differences with the chart posted earlier are just a matter of taste.

    December 2018 - Don't Blame Me-65647b21-9662-4aad-90fe-0e7750c98156-jpg
    I usually start learning new tunes as a solo pieces. Maybe that’s because I took piano lessons before guitar.
    Last edited by KirkP; 12-08-2018 at 05:32 PM.

  22. #21

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    Those chords were somewhat the basis of my first 'weird' version. None of the notes there were haphazard.

    Imo, there was nothing wrong with your second version. You'd played it once straight and heard something else in your head and played it. Quite right, nothing wrong with that. In some ways it was more fluent than the first one because you'd done the first one.

    Having been through that process a million times myself (!) I can tell you that the more you do it the worse you think it sounds. It's just the way it happens... but not necessarily to the listener who comes across it.

    So, as that listener, I enjoyed it, it swung along in a bluesy way very well and sounded like a perfectly valid and creative interpretation of the tune. But I suppose it's you who must be happy with it too, so - !

    You can repost it if you like; I'll listen to it and maybe grab it before you get the collywobbles again :-)

  23. #22

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    Last edited by M-ster; 12-10-2018 at 08:18 PM.

  24. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1 View Post
    Kirk, I've just seen your second version. Great! Thanks for that :-)
    Here’s a replacement for that 2nd version that’s closer to what I was aiming for. It’s on the Tele plugged direct to GarageBand so forgive the crispy tone.
    I also used a click track this time to hold the tempo. I’d rather not, but it helps when I’m learning.

    Next maybe I’ll try a backing track with at least a bass line.
    Last edited by KirkP; 12-10-2018 at 08:45 PM.

  25. #24

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    Yes, I liked that and I think you're right, a bass line would give a finishing touch too.

    Interesting video... what was that? Certainly looked Christmassy!

  26. #25

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    I have problem with recording.. and I want to ovecome it so I decided to record at least once a week (for forum, maybe more for myself) to get used to that feeling and to play for record the way I play without it (or in a gig - strange enough but I am very comfortable at a gig - probably because I have nowhere to run)))

    So it is just dreamy noodling - not quite jazzy.. first take on a spot... trying to play into it .. with family on teh background (not quite on the background to be honest))

    Sorry for quality..


  27. #26

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    I may be mistaken 'cause I did not try with the instrument but in Nat King Cole version in the 2nd chorus at least in bars 3-4 I hear

    Eb6?/Bb - D7/F# - Gm-7 ap[prox.
    (it is in Bb, so it will be F6/C - E7/G# - A-7 in C)

    And I like it much more than in charts...

    I am not sure about the exact harmony... but it definitely has this Ab (or G#) - and in charts it is mor like Ab (an alt sound for V, whether it is Dm7b5 or G7b9) and in recordered version it is more like G# that foes to A

    it is not as straightforward ii - iii7-vi as I played... but sort of mixed harmony.

  28. #27

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    the version that features guitar or the fancy one with strings and shit?
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  29. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758 View Post
    the version that features guitar or the fancy one with strings and shit?
    The one with shit!

  30. #29

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    haha that’s just a phrase around here that means “and stuff like that.” or “etc”
    i use it on the forum and probably sounds like something else to others
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  31. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758 View Post
    haha that’s just a phrase around here that means “and stuff like that.” or “etc”
    i use it around here and probably sounds like something else to others
    Yes, I got it))) just kidding (for a foreigner's ear it is catchy)))

    By the way these style of strings playing unison counterpoint to solist sometimes can be interesting - especially if the orchestra is good( when not too corny and cliche)

    The other record with his small group is real jazzy ... shit... (bro...)

  32. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonah View Post
    I hope more people listen to this. It's got some lovely stuff in it, especially towards the end.

  33. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonah View Post
    Yes, I got it))) just kidding (for a foreigner's ear it is catchy)))

    By the way these style of strings playing unison counterpoint to solist sometimes can be interesting - especially if the orchestra is good( when not too corny and cliche)

    The other record with his small group is real jazzy ... shit... (bro...)
    absolutely, in fact string arrangements like that are actually some of my favorite music and I try to capture as much as I can in my solo guitar arrangements.
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  34. #33

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    now if I could just capture some essence of Shostakovich...
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  35. #34

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    I hope more people listen to this. It's got some lovely stuff in it, especially towards the end.
    Thank you...

    I feel embarassed actually.
    Because I just hear that in some places I did not follow instinct and tried to secure it and as usually it leads to awkwardness and mistakes... hope I will feel more relaxed with it later.

    I really forced myself to upload it - I said to myself: if I do not begin to do it now I will never do it...

    If you do not mind, guys, I will make a few more takes later and probably one with backing track...

  36. #35

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    I liked it too, Jonah, and I know what you mean about being embarrassed. I hope to post improv for the first time here and I don't know if I can do it! I lack confidence (that's why I quit music school)
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  37. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758 View Post
    I liked it too, Jonah, and I know what you mean about being embarrassed. I hope to post improv for the first time here and I don't know if I can do it! I lack confidence (that's why I quit music school)

    I usually quit everything because I had too much confidence!)))

  38. #37

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    My new version on Stratocaster/chambered/:

    Box
    Lovely

  39. #38

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    A bit crazy with iReal .. the pattern was called 'jazz ballad' - I did not expect it would go into double-time.. the changes are default...

    So far I feel myself as if I am searching my pockets but instead of coins so far I find some garbage, old receits, gum... and all shit (as joe2758 would say...)


  40. #39

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    It's definitely your fault, definitely...

    But what is that picture? It's got me worried.

  41. #40

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    wait. your name isn’t jonah!?!?!
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  42. #41

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    Good, you might say lovely to me

    what is that picture?

  43. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonah View Post
    Nice comping. You recrdered it yourself?
    Just using the computer camera but the sound is improved later. Well, maybe not improved but certainly louder!

    As a soloist you are very careful...
    I can't afford not to be :-)

    (I always look like I'm being very, very careful but I'm not actually aware of it, it's just the way I do it)

  44. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonah View Post
    I hope yours is not 2758?
    I have a theory his birthday is Feb 7, 1958... I watch too many detective movies

  45. #44

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    Maybe it is 1927, May 5?

  46. #45

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  47. #46

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    I just did this five minutes ago. Different harmonies in the backing and a different way of playing it. I look careful (maybe) but I'm just playing it as it comes. If it sounds like the other one it's because the phrasing is probably similar. That can change things, it's quite interesting.

    We ought to do a discussion on phrasing sometime... I might start one.
    This take is really nice...om.

    As for phrasing... it is the most important issue ever.


    - playing rythminc excercises like playing 8ths in 3 or 5 or 7 against stable 4/4 (the best thing is to play chords in 4/4 and melody with these groupings on top simultaneously)... these shifting accents get incorporated into ear and then I just tried to play phrases like I play just onbeat 8/8 phrase but starting on 'and' of the 1st beat (basically it is 5/8 grouping thing) etc.
    These shifting accents really move things on when I am able to relate them to harmony properly...
    - then I had to force myself to start a phrase with a pickup note and then to make myself hear how this note is related to the harmony...

    For example if we take an ascending line line F(pickup)/E-F-A-C/E.. over Dm7
    and we play it just in time that E coincide with the 1st beat in comping it will sound as suspension to F but the rythm feel will be very steady -- all in the pocket. It sounds nice because if this suspension... it makes it move on a bit.. right?
    If it were E/F-A-C-E.. everything would be too much in the pocket.. too stable.

    But if we make the 5/8 thing and start a pick up note on the 1st beat.... and play it as a pick so shirfing the phrase 1/8 behind the beat... though in this case there is no suspension - the rythmic shift in accents on the phrase brings in movement...




    Another point - I noticed joe played the melody almost exclusively onbeat... this is really the thing that I have to learn to control.. playing just straight on beat (and correct note) adds the solid ground into a solo...
    I re-listened my playing - almost everyything goes on 'and' which maybe is not that bad as natural hearing but can be quite annoying.


    My problem that I am not only playing as it comes - I am litterally being taken away... at best I feel myself in the middle of the storm and either I catch the wave and survive or lose it and drown.... all I can do is trying to hear something... and if it does not come out I am just lost... and feel like: damn... nothing... empty black... then I just stop...
    I am just not able to consiously use anything I practice in real playing... I tried.. it ruins everything.

    the teacher I took some lessons with said that with such an approach I really have to practice a lot of such things behind the performance so that all the tools would become very intuitive... he said that it is just a personal thing: some players sound like they compose the solo on the spot (he named Raney and Joe Pass - so speed dose not matter here) when he said composed he meant that they more or less coordinate the tools they have, and some players just begin as a warm up and then gradually gets just blown away (he named Wes, Sco... somebody else)...
    I am not sure about names but I think there is some sense in it (it does not make anyone worse or better of course) - when I listen Joe Pass or Raney I mostly hear that their creativiity and inventiveness work within certain territory they know and keep investigating... usually these players are more creatively stable by the way!

    When I listen to Wes or Sco I often hear like they begin a solo with some kind of attampts to approach the unknow thing... in some solos they actually do not come out of it even.. they give attampts trying some familiar phrases and licks like making a test you know... searching for it... and it may happen that nothing works this time so they may end up ok but not great... but if it happens they find they really dive into it and then it's all the fun for them to get to an unknown territory.
    That makes their creativity in performance not always that stable - too much risk... I think in that case the experience of live playing is more important than anything.. you need the circumstances where you cannot stop and quit and have to find solutions more than the players of the 1st type.

  48. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont View Post
    No, I think it's very hard to do well convincingly on the guitar. The guitar's defaults seem to be "dull and boring" or "completely overwrought fake emotional drivel."

    When you hear someone who can really do it well, it stands out. I tell people to listen to a lot of Willie Nelson.
    Willie Nelson’s solos have rarely grabbed me, but I think it’s great advice to listen to and emulate players who are able to make compelling performances without straying too far from the melody. John Knowles comes to mind.



    I’ve sometimes considered trying to reinvent my playing by pretending chords don’t exist for a while and just focus on learning to play melodies in as lyrical and compelling way possible. I’d start with simple familiar melodies and make sure I can nail them and make them beautiful before progressing to more complex melodies and improvisation.

  49. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by KirkP View Post
    Willie Nelson’s solos have rarely grabbed me, but I think it’s great advice to listen to and emulate players who are able to make compelling performances without straying too far from the melody. John Knowles comes to mind.



    I’ve sometimes considered trying to reinvent my playing by pretending chords don’t exist for a while and just focus on learning to play melodies in as lyrical and compelling way possible. I’d start with simple familiar melodies and make sure I can nail them and make them beautiful before progressing to more complex melodies and improvisation.
    Lovely player, this guy. New to me...I'll be checking out a lot more.

    As for Willie, heck, a lot of the his solos would pretty much just BE the melody...but he plays melody in such a convincing way, it never feels redundant to me...Willie plays just like he sings, totally respectful of the tune, with just a bit of artistic license, and I truly don't think he ever played a tune he didn't feel connected to. Willie don't phone it in.

    I'm a Willie fan though...I think he's a national treasure.
    Jeff Matz, Jazz Guitar:
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    "Jazz is like life...it goes on longer than you think, and as soon as you're like 'oh, I get it,' it ends."

    --The Ghost of Duke Ellington

  50. #49

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    To be fair, Willie also played a lot of crap. But when he nailed it I'd say that was because of him, not the guitar playing. It was the kind of person he was coming through much more than studious technique and all that. In fact, he didn't have too much studious technique.

    He was the 'what you see is what you get' type of person. And there was also a bit of 'and if you don't like it you can lump it' in there too. And that's actually quite attractive to people :-)

  51. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont View Post
    Lovely player, this guy. New to me...I'll be checking out a lot more.
    John Knowles and Tommy Emmanuel will release a duo CD soon. I think they’ll do some touring next year.



    John started doing arrangements for Chet Atkins in the 1970’s. Here’s an interesting two hour interview.
    John Knowles Interview - Chet Atkins first Certified Guitar Player - Everyone Loves Guitar - Everyone Loves Guitar