[Dixielandjazz] Re: NEW TUNES FOR OKOM?
charliehooks2 at earthlink.net
Fri Jun 17 22:43:47 PDT 2005
On Friday, June 17, 2005, at 08:47 PM, Dan Augustine wrote:
> (I never have understood why you can't do dixieland-waltzes.)
But of course you can. There's Fats Waller's "Jitterbug Waltz,"
there's Steve Allen's "Gravy Waltz." There's Ann Ronell's "Willow,
Weep for Me." There's "Hello, Young Lovers," written in 3, which, if
you haven't played, you have a revelation coming. (You ought to hear
Russ Phillips play it in 4 at a lightspeed pace!) There's...oh,
hell, there's a million of 'em: "I'll See You Again," one of Noel
Coward's most poignant tunes...almost as gripping as Irving Berlin's
"What'll I Do?" C'mon: THINK, people! You ever try the 12 bar
blues in 3? No? Try it. Another revelation.
Truth is: jazz waltzes are some of the most wonderful OKOM music
around. Eubie Blake once told me he deliberately wrote his songs so
that they would work in either 3 or 4. He said he was working on the
edge of the popular change over from waltzes to 2-step, and he needed
to touch both bases. And sure enough: if you try almost any Eubie
tune, it will swing in either direction. Try "Memories of You." You
Jazz waltzes can swing their asses off; and because they can, they
are great fun to play in normal dance tempos. But:
Then try my favorite hustle: a superslow downhome black blues tempo,
but separated into triplets on every beat, making a 9/8, but actually
playing eighths and sixteenths. Dooba dooba dooba do daht daht like
Hubert Lawes, the great black flutist back in the seventies who
recorded "Come, Ye Disconsolate"...ooh, man! Ain't nothin' more
total downhome feel than on that cut! It's pure Southern black
church, and there ain't nothin' homey-er than that. You might have
to explain briefly to white audiences where you're coming from
initially, but they"ll hear it soon enough. It's irresistible.
Blacks need no explanation. They'uz born hearin' it!
Time to crash: fun to write, but too much of The Creature, as me
Irish ancestors accurately described him. But I have re-read and
find nothing reprehensible.
"When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading."--Paul
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