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  1. #1
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    December 2018 - Don't Blame Me

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

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

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

  2. #2
    do you guys all play d-7b5 instead of d-7?
    White belt
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  3. #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.

  4. #4
    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!

  5. #5
    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).
    White belt
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  6. #6
    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!

  7. #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.

  8. #8
    Quite a lot of the time it told me that many of the original versions sounded outdated, at least to our ears, and what they were doing nowadays was actually much better.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.

  9. #9
    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
    White belt
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  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by joe2758 View Post
    if it was an integral part pf the tune
    If what was?

  11. #11
    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.”
    White belt
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  12. #12
    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.

  13. #13
    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
    White belt
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  14. #14
    Don't copy me, Joe!


  15. #15
    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
    White belt
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  16. #16
    so it looks like the -7b5 does have some history! (f-6=d-7b5)
    White belt
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  17. #17
    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. #18
    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. #19
    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. #20
    Kirk, I've just seen your second version. Great! Thanks for that :-)

  21. #21
    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. #22
    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. #23
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    Last edited by M-ster; 12-10-2018 at 08:18 PM.

  24. #24
    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. #25
    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. #26
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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. #27
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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. #28
    the version that features guitar or the fancy one with strings and shit?
    White belt
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  29. #29
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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. #30
    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
    White belt
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