Tuesday, March 15, 2011

What Did You Miss This Week? (Week 214 #257)


But first, Joe's recap of the Matthew Skoller/Lurrie Bell visit two weeks ago. Here are a few of Joe's take-aways:

  • Relax. Skoller talked about the importance of relaxing your upper body to play well.
  • Joe paraphrased Matthew's quote: "You are never done learning bending."
  • Skoller talked about accompaniment playing and demonstrated that you should think like a Hammond B3 organ - play throbbing, padding notes under others to fit in.
  • Also on the accompaniment topic, Joe recalls Skoller saying you need to be polite and make the vocalist happy. It's not about you, it's about the music and the vocalist!
  • "Novices don't listen to what they're hearing and playing."
Joe also thanked everyone again who turned out the night before at SPACE to see the Filisko/Noden and Skoller/Bell show!

Now on to Juke, the number one hit on the Cashbox charts. Joe finished up his discussion of the Little Walter smash hit by going over page eight (transcription here - sorry about page 3b; we'll get that to you soon). This page has an incredible swing feel to it and is as well-known as the head. If you tag this on to the end of most any song you're playing, a well-versed band will recognize you're going to end the song. It is a classic outro!

Turn the page horizontally so you can look at it from end to end and you'll notice how rhythmically solid bars 1, 3, 5 and 7 are, with subtle variations in bars 2, 4, 6 and 8. This is the beauty of this chorus. Walter also has an extremely refined use of the almost inaudible rhythmic chording that keeps the song driving ahead.

Juke is a tune all harp players should know and understand. Add it to your repertoire!

James Conway's Irish Harmonica Workshop!!!

B1 Buddy and amazing Irish harmonica master, James Conway, is teaching an Irish Harmonica Workshop on Saturday, March 19, 2pm-3:30pm at the Old Town School, 4544 N. Lincoln Avenue. The price is only $20. Register now!

Here's the workshop description from the OTS website:

The diatonic harmonica is mostly known as a folk or blues instrument but it’s also a great ax to play Celtic music. The 10-hole harp is capable of playing all the standard jigs and reels and with it’s expressive bends and chords can sound like an Irish fiddle or accordion. The workshop will cover topics and techniques such as tongue-chording, modes/harp positions, types of Irish tunes, ornamentations/decorations, tongue switching, and octaves. Jim will have handouts of popular Irish tunes written in sheet music and tablature. Different tunings such as Paddy-Richter and Conway’s bagpipe tuning will also be discussed. Students are encouraged to bring a recording device and a diatonic 10-hole harmonica in the key of D.

Class Notes
  • Joe is off to Brazil so classes next week will be run by Shoji Naito and Zoe Savage. If you want Shoji's comments be sure to bring your transcription along.
  • All Shoji's private lessons will take place in B1 next week.
- Grant Kessler, B1 Blues Crew