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Skylark: playing "almost" a Rythm Changes over the A section

Discussion in 'Music Theory [DB]' started by jjqq123, Aug 10, 2018.


  1. jjqq123

    jjqq123

    Aug 16, 2017
    Hi, i need to learn skylark, and to me some versions (Dexter Gordon´s, Mark Turner´s) just almost play a rythm changes over A.

    I´m more confortable playing this, because real book´s changes seem a little bit confusing to me, and i can hear this changes better:

    |Ebmaj7 C7 | Fmin7 Bb7 | Gmin7 C7| Fmin7 Bb7|
    |Abmaj7 Abmaj7/G|Fmin7 Bb7 |Ebmaj7 C7| Fmin7 Bb7|

    Since i´m here i´ll post my bridge section aswell:
    Cmin7 F7 | Bbmin7 Eb7 | Abmaj7 |G-7b5 C7 |
    F-7 F-7/E |Ebmaj7 Abmaj7/D|G6 Emin7|A-7D7G6Bb7|

    So, my question is, do you "hear" changes similar to this when playing skylark? If not, what chords do do you think will clash with this?

    Thank you very much. Best regards.
     
  2. Great tune! I haven't hear Mark Turner's version in a while (will check it tonight) and do not know Dex's version (will have to check out, though. What record is it on?). I learned the changes from Keith Jarrett's Blue Note set. He plays something like this for the 1st A in Eb (F is also common, in my experience):

    ||Ebmaj7 F-7|G-7 (or Eb/G) Abmaj7|Ebmaj7 (or Eb/Bb) A7|Abmaj7 G-7b5 C7|F7 |F-7 Bb7|Ebmaj7 C7|F-7 Bb7||

    This is a bare bones outline. Lots of opportunities for tensions, added dominants, etc. The three features that standout to me and differentiate this progression from rhythm changes are: (1) whole step movement in bass in ms. 1 & 2, (2) tritone sub to IV chord in m. 3, and (3) II-V to the II7 in ms. 4 & 5. I seem to remember that Turner plays something similar to the above but I'll verify when I get home.

    Your version of the bridge is close but i play some key differences. i have to go back to work but can give changes tonight, if it will be helpful.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2018
    jjqq123 and Don Kasper like this.
  3. Don Kasper

    Don Kasper Supporting Member

    Yes!!!!
     
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  4. Carl Hillman

    Carl Hillman

    Jan 1, 2010
    Composer's (presumed) changes:



    This is closer to the changes meandering posted. (I learned it this way as well.)

    Though, Hoagy's bridge does start like yours on vi instead of the oft heard IV.
     
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  5. jjqq123

    jjqq123

    Aug 16, 2017
    Thank you for your response! Your take on the B section will be very much appreciated. Since i went to the piano your version has a lot more sense than mine.
    "(1) whole step movement in bass in ms. 1 & 2" not a lot of room to be creative here. The thing i hate is that the line cliche has to be one octave up of where i want to hear that line. I think i won´t like that line that much if i have to repeat it for every soloist. Specially if it continues with Abmaj7 (that´s the real book changes here) instead of F-7 in measure 2, followed by Ebmaj7/Bb
    "(2) tritone sub to IV chord in m. 3" i don´t like that chord at all! :D. I guess i could maintain Eb for Eb7..., or play Eb7/G
    "(3) II-V to the II7 in ms. 4 & 5" ok, this one is important, cannot skip.
     
  6. jjqq123

    jjqq123

    Aug 16, 2017
    Thank you. That A7 on bar 3 seems less awfull if preceded by Bb-7 on the 3rd beat and A7 on the fourth beat
     
  7. Carl Hillman

    Carl Hillman

    Jan 1, 2010
    I guess it depends on your tolerance for tritone subs. I kind of like it.

    You could always just play Eb7 there.
     
    jjqq123 likes this.
  8. sorry, not used to typing out changes. original post has been corrected...
     
  9. jjqq123

    jjqq123

    Aug 16, 2017
    Hi meandering, forgot this; i thought about rythm changes after hearing Dexter Gordon´s version. It´s this one:

     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2018
  10. Love that tune, played it on a church gig a while back. All kinds of room for
    creativity. Bass is a bit buried without using headphones on a computer.
    Skylark
     
    jjqq123 likes this.
  11. Whousedtoplay

    Whousedtoplay

    May 18, 2013
    TEXAS
    Who could explain the appearance of that Gmin7(b5) chord before C7, F7 in Eb major?
    It has nothing to do with the leading VII in Major or iimin7(b5) in Minor.
    Some passing (leading) chord, a relative of a secondary dominant/tritone?
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2018
  12. jjqq123

    jjqq123

    Aug 16, 2017
    Hi I think they are called related II, they may be -7 or -7b5 and they precede a dominant chord. May aswell be the related II from the tritone sub (Db-7b5 or Db-7 to C7 to F)
    (Correct me if i´m wrong)
     
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  13. jjqq123

    jjqq123

    Aug 16, 2017
    Beautiful ornaments, thank you.
     
  14. Don Kasper

    Don Kasper Supporting Member

    Here is my (old) chart on Skylark. I'm not sure what version(s) I borrowed & stole from.
    Thanks.
    IMG_3716.JPG
     
  15. Whousedtoplay

    Whousedtoplay

    May 18, 2013
    TEXAS
    As an amateur pop musician, I like Ella Fitzgerald's version of Skylark.

    Just an exception/issue about the bass note with one chord.
    Let's use Don's chords.

    Ebmaj7/Eb - Fmin7/F - Eb/G - Abmaj7/Ab - Ebmaj7/Bb (bass) - (and here is my issue) A7(9) (#11)/C (bass)

    Ella's version is in Ab.

     
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  16. jjqq123

    jjqq123

    Aug 16, 2017
    Very interesting.
    I think i hear C-9 instead of A7 (Ebmaj7/C), but i´m not sure at all.
    1:35 bass does Bb twice (maybe Bb, A, Ab) and i think i hear II V I to Ab
     
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  17. Whousedtoplay

    Whousedtoplay

    May 18, 2013
    TEXAS
    Yes, it sounds very Cmin.
    What’s more, that C is always around.
    The first chord is more Eb6 than Ebmaj7.
    P.S. Don will explain to us that Ella’s version is not acceptable for serious Jazz musicians.:laugh:
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2018
  18. Don Kasper

    Don Kasper Supporting Member

    jjqq123,
    Yes! (transposing my comments to the key of Eb, not Ab!) - "Ebmaj/Bb, Cmin7" is played in m. 3 of the first 2 A sections of the melody.
    At 1:35 (the last A section of the first chorus), IMO, they DO use the "hip" Tritone Substitution "A7#11" (D7#11 in the key of Ab.)
    Thanks for your ears and interest!
     
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  19. Don Kasper

    Don Kasper Supporting Member

    WUTP,
    I believe you are correct - the first chord does not contain a Maj7. Good Earz!
    I believe you are incorrect - any serious musician/bassist should be interested in the actual Harmony in Ella's version!
    Thanks!
     
  20. Whousedtoplay

    Whousedtoplay

    May 18, 2013
    TEXAS
    Don, I've used your excellent chord sheet as my guidance for Ella's commercially more approachable rendition of Skylark.
    Ella's arrangement is a simplified (smoother) version of more a advanced Jazz version of Skylark.
     
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