Shoji's been listening to a compilation album of R&B hits from 1948 and '49 and his take is pretty clear - these sax honkers have a lot of bearing on Juke and Little Walter's playing.
We listened to tunes like:
- Cornbread, Hal Singer (compare this especially to the alternate take opening)
- Deacon's Hop, Big Jay McNeely
- The Chicken Shack Boogie, Amos Milburn (check Little Walter's playing on Act Like You Love Me with Jimmy Rogers for this one)
- Beefstew, Hal Singer
Shoji points out that Beefstew is especially interesting to compare to Juke because in both cases, the lead breaks from the heavy tonic reliance for a few verses, stays within the chord tones, then circles back to rhythmic ideas on the tonic. The compositional structure of the two songs is very similar.
We spend a lot of time considering Juke a masterpiece and finding it unapproachable and assume it's note choice - Shoji's point is that the backbone of this song is in fact not the note choice, it's rhythm. And a lot of E's!
- Next week is the last class of this session.