Cucumber Slumber

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Murf, Feb 18, 2002.

  1. Murf


    Mar 28, 2001
    Hi guys,
    not sure if this is the right place to post this (mods feel free to move)so if its not apologies in advance,

    Anyway I was just wondering would anybody have a transcription of this groovy little weather report tune, I can play the main figures (which marcus miller slaps in that godawful tribute to weather report thingy) but I'm lost when it comes to that wonderful 'slip slidey' riff (I think its D, F#gF#, D and ends with a double stop on high D), the trouble is the notes seem right but I'm just not getting that 'slide' effect.

    Any ideas chaps?

  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Are you using a double bass? If we're talking about the Miroslav Vitous line on "Mysterious Traveller" - only version I've heard?
  3. Murf


    Mar 28, 2001
    Hi Bruce,
    no I'm using electric, I first heard the tune (cucumber slumber) on the (godawful) tribute to weather report CD, the version on this is played by Marcus Miller, after the main figure he goes into this 'slidey' (for want of a better word) riff (in D I think) and its a damn funky little riff, I then downloaded the original (from audiogalaxy) and it was played by alphonso(sp) johnson.
  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I always thought it was Vitous - I just looked at my CD and it does say the both he and Johnson play on this album - never noticed that before!

    It's definitely a double bass "feel" though and something that is very much defined by being played on DB.
  5. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    You really think so? It always sound like EBG to me :confused:

    Great bass line, my favorite WR tune. Anybody else heard Bill Laswell's version (with samples from the original recording) on Materials' "Hallucination Engine"?
  6. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Agreed...that 'tribute' is coaster material, if you get my drift.
  7. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Finally re-visited this tune.
    Bruce, it's definitely an electric bass...IMO, the whole thing reeks of '70s R&B.

    ...simply, here's what I came with:

    lEG#-DA-G#_..lG/C# G#/D....E_l

    BAR 1
    E=OPEN(slide into the following G#)
    G#=11th fret/A-string
    D = 12th fret/D-string
    A = 14th gret/G-string
    G#=13th fret/Gstring

    BAR 2
    G/C# =17th/18th frets(D & G strings)
    G#/D =18th/19th frets(D & G strings)
    E = 7th fret/A-string

    As far as how to feel or pull off the slides?
    That's on you!
    The above is only a rudimentary sketch...there are slides & ghosted notes galore.
  8. Murf


    Mar 28, 2001
    Hey, thanks Jim:)
    I dont have my bass on me at the moment but it looks right, I seem to have the notes but I just couldnt get the 'slidey' feel however looking at your transcription I see where I was going wrong (I was playing most of it an octave lower...Doh!)

  9. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    Aw, I didn't think it was *that* bad. I liked some of the tracks pretty well, though none of them got the vibe of the original. I liked Elegant People and Palladium because I've always loved those tunes. Cucumber Slumber was pretty fun too, as was Young and Fine.

    Man in the Green Shirt absolutely reeked, though, IMO. And if I hear one more version of Birdland with cheesy vocals I'm gonna have to go postal on somebody.
  10. Murf


    Mar 28, 2001
    ditto and if I hear one more version of Birdland with a guitar playing the opening melody (jacos false harmonics)....there's gonna be a burnin..
  11. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    I could be wrong, 'cause I'm doing this from memory and am not near my CD player, but I think that first G# might actually be a B on the 14th fret.
  12. hujo


    Apr 18, 2001
    Stockholm, Sweden
    I haven't heard this tribute thing you're talking about but i really dig the (original?) version with Alphonso Johnson. He's the MAN!
  13. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Rich- you're sayin' it goes UP to "B".
    I keep tellin' everyone around here I'm a 'tone deaf weasle'(I shoulda been a drummer!). ;)
    The "B" definitely works...I kinda like both, actually.

    While diggin' thru my Weather Report discs last night, I came upon(not literally) that WR tribute cd...I thought to myself, "YECCHHH". ;)

    FWIW, I did like The Manhattan Transfer's cover of "Birdland"; it's on their Extensions album(a pretty nice record if I recall).
  14. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    That's how I seem to remember it. Big ol' slide up into the B. Seems to lie a little better under the fingers, but that may be just my bias. Or my bass.
  15. LeeNunn

    LeeNunn Supporting Member

    Oct 9, 2012
    Atlanta, GA
    Here's how I hear it. I tried to find another transcription for comparison purposes, but I didn't have any luck.

    Attached Files:

  16. Michedelic

    Michedelic MId-Century Modern

    Yep, definitely electric; I saw WP 1974-ish, Alphonso was playing a Jazz Bass, riffing on that tune like it was no big deal, making complicated stuff look easy. English folk-rock band Fairport Convention opened the show. AJ, as far as I know, teaches at a music school in Pasadena, CA.