Country Blues => The Back Porch => Topic started by: waxwing on November 27, 2005, 11:56:47 AM

Title: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: waxwing on November 27, 2005, 11:56:47 AM
Well I was so stoked after singing M & O Blues with Terry Robb playing the second guitar part ala Patton and Brown that I really wanted to work up an arrangement with someone. I had tried to keep an ear/eye tuned to what Terry was playing, and I also had an arrangement of Moon Goin' Down on a duet video by Bob and Woody.  I also listened to all the Patton/Brown sides, which led me to realize that what I would really be creating would be more like Willie Brown backing Willie Brown.-G-

I sorta took the ideas and arranged them to fit M & O Blues loosely. Miller (Cyotegulch) and I have been getting together from time to time and I had sprung the idea on him. So yesterday we set to work fitting the parts together. M & O is a pretty primitive 12 bar form:

| I6 | I | I6 | I7 |
| IV7 | I | I6 | I7 |
| V7/VI7/V7 | I | I6 | I | 

with the final three bars of each stanza being the familiar signature lick (not going to the 7th at the end). Once we had that worked out it was just a matter of working out something for the bar each of IV chord and V-VI chords, and then the tag (which I muffed Willie's nice lick in this take).

I gotta hand it to Miller. After a few run-thrus he was really getting it down, so I decided we should start recording and see if we got something for the Back Porch. This was the 4th take and he had to go or we would have done another.

I think we got the balance right after moving our chairs around a bit. We recorded thru a little T mic into Garageband on my laptop. No effects whatsoever. I really had to shrink it down, tho', 24kps mono, so a little of the dynamic is lost in the translation.

My vocal was getting pretty ragged, altho' I do put a lot of gravel into this song anyway.-G-

Please let me know how you feel about it. Is the sig lick too insistent, played on both guitars with Miller an octave up? Gre thinks we should break it up with an unsung verse in the middle, perhaps before "All o' you men, oughta be ashamed o' yourself".

We'll record again the next time we get together and I'll post a new version.

What fun. Thanks Miller.

All for now.
John C.
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: Prof Scratchy on November 27, 2005, 12:01:25 PM
Good to the last drop!
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: waxwing on November 27, 2005, 12:20:07 PM
Thanks Scratch. That was quick. I was just about to edit my post to include info on guitars and such.

So here it is: we're both playing out of E, capoed up 2 frets. I'm playing my little Stella and Miller is playing his "New York" school parlor (probably a Stella) repaired and set up by Todd Cambio. I think the two Stellas sound great together.

All for now.
John C.
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: a2tom on November 27, 2005, 01:40:37 PM
I love it.  First, I think the gruff vocal quality is great - sounds very natural, not effected, which would be the only danger.  Just sounds hard core bluesy.

The lick - I have found myself more and more into the pieces like this  - with the between-singing repeated lick.  I suppose in some of the great recordings there will be little changes in phrasing or timing, but not always.  The effect of inistence is very powerful too, and here really keeps keeps you dancing along.

The duet work is pretty amazing - very smoothly integrated and well balanced in the recording. 

Thanks for posting!

Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: Buzz on November 27, 2005, 02:24:39 PM
Howdy John!
Just downloaded it, will now listen and let you know my take on the recording.

Meanwhile I am going to beg you to send me mp3s of the 4 (?) Patton/ Willie Brown duets you have mentioned, and lyrics for all of them, so I can listen to them and find my place in the genre, sort of get snuggled down in the groove, you might say...
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: Bob B on November 27, 2005, 03:34:59 PM
Hey Hickory BBQ Duo

That was mighty fine--gritty playing and plenty of hard times in the vocals.  To quote W.B., "Ragged and Dirty"-and in the best way possible!

Bob B
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: Stuart on November 27, 2005, 04:51:21 PM
Well done, fellas, extremely well done!
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: Buzz on November 27, 2005, 05:55:16 PM
Johnny Waxwing: A few observations! :D
1. Sounds terrific for  all the combined efforst of learning it, practicing it, recording it a few times, compressing it, and downloading it. Lotsa work, but sounds pretty fine for all that, indeed.
2. Your vocal sounds terrific. Soulful, in your voice, more natural than rehearsed.I like that.
3. Could hear the second guitar, and really feel it more than hear it. Which may be a good thing: If it is louder than the lead and vocal, it blows everyone out you ca't hear yourself, and the audience gets blasted. If it lies back and is felt, then the totality of the sound is transmitted and picked up as  more of an entity, and that is better.That said, I think we should try other positions for recording the 2 guitars, and turn my volume up (g).
4. I practiced it a few dozen more times with the tune. It is cool. Real cool.I want to do this some more.
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: uncle bud on November 29, 2005, 07:46:20 PM
Nice job, guys! Works really great as a duet.
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: Jeff in Montana on December 09, 2005, 10:58:46 AM
Sounds great!  I agree with the instrumental part in the middle idea would break it up nice.  Have you heard Stefan Grossman and Duck Baker's version of this?  An instrumental; they slow it down abit and one of the two plays a bass line around the Willie Brown guitar part (can't remember which) - gives it quite a different feel.  Can't remember their CD's name - Northern Skies or something like that.  Anyhoo, great job, and, btw, I think vocals sound great.  Thanks.
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: onewent on December 09, 2005, 11:48:51 AM
...excellent...nice strong push &  primitive vibe...two thumbs up!
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: poozmeister on December 09, 2005, 02:38:44 PM
Like it a lot guys!  And the vocals work great like that John.  The backporch thing is so good Waxwing, why didn't you tell me about it before?   Oh wait, maybe you did.  So why didn't you tell me to pay attention?
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: waxwing on December 09, 2005, 06:30:37 PM
Thanks a lot for all the great feedback folks. We both appreciate it much. We got to work on it some more today, for the first time, and put an instrumental verse in between sung verses 2 and 3 and then put the outro at the end of the last sung verse. We like it a lot better. So we did a few takes and I even managed to get Willie's tag right.-G- Take 2 attached below.

Pat - Where the heck you been? I mention the Back Porch over on the 'Shed about 3 times a week.-G- Hope to hear something from you soon!

All for now.
John C.
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: norman on December 09, 2005, 07:01:49 PM
wow! now that rocks! I have to learn how to sing that one

thanx for sharing the progress

Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: Slack on December 09, 2005, 08:12:43 PM
Yeah, wow -- very nice progress guys.  Not sure, without going  back to listen to the first pass if it is your timing or recording technique --- but the guitar guitar parts are much more distinct.  I like oyur singing better too JohnC -- at one point you start to "talk" the verse, which is nice as it gives the vocal some variation -- you might consider doing a bit more of that.

Very cool!
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: dj on December 10, 2005, 06:23:05 AM
That's really beginning to smoke!  The guitars mesh really well now, and the vocal is sounding really good.  Nice singing!
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: Jeff in Montana on December 10, 2005, 08:43:16 AM
Hey, just one more quick thanks!  I just had a blast playing along with you guys this morning on my Martin OM-15.  I had learned this from Stefan's Delta Blues 3CD/ Book package.  The break in the middle works out great because if I lost my spot I could get it back into it quick enough at that point.  I'm thinking you guys starting speeding up a bit at the end, though - I know it couldn't be me slowing down!   :P
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: uncle bud on December 10, 2005, 12:18:16 PM
Sounding great guys, real tight sound between the guitars. Makes me want to play guitar.
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: poozmeister on December 10, 2005, 12:43:48 PM
Hey John - kidding about the "why didn't you tell me?".  Reading between the lines it actually means "Damn - why didn't I listen to John earlier?"  My soundcard has behaved very badly for the last year or more.  So it's been a pain to listen to anything or record on the computer for some time.  Consequently, I've stayed away from all listening rooms.  All of which is changing soon.  My soundcard suddenly now lets me hear up to 5 songs before turning to all static (up from a half song) - but I ordered a replacement anyway... so now I'm listening to music on the computer again, and will try my hand at uploading soon.

I've been working on a duet arrangement of Van Ronk's rendition of "That'll Never Happen No More".  I play the G song  capoed at 5, which puts me in C.  Now I think I have a non-capoed C part sounding pretty good.  I have to record one to try them together and see if they mesh, or where they clash.  May be a month or so before that one makes the Back Porch.  A solo or two will hopefully make it sooner.  Looking forward to checking out more of the songs you guys have recorded. 

Pat D.
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: Prof Scratchy on December 11, 2005, 12:40:36 PM
Well, I enjoyed this the first time round - but the second version takes it a step further, both instrumentally and vocally. Great performance, folks! Love the interplay between the guitars and those gruff and gravelly vocals.
Prof S
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: Buzz on December 12, 2005, 03:59:21 PM
I think we both will agree with these folks:
1.better microphone  placement +/or our location in reference to the mics--> picking up the 2 guitars better. Better ability to hear the 2 parts.Sounds much brighter too.
2. guitar break after 2 verses gives some classic depth and structure to the piece, fixes the pre-war genre of the tune, makes sense, and sounds great.
3. we did speed up a tad at the end, but what the hell, we got into it! (g)
4. your voice sounds really great, in my opinion.
5. the 2 old Stellas sound great together.

We gotta try a couple more duets! I really dig it.

Spoke to Jed t'other day, and he said he'd give a lsten to KCJoe and Minnie's "Joliet Bound", to see if he can hear any  repeated line or structure to the base runs/part Joe plays , or whether it is some/most improvisation. I swear I hear alternating parts. E me the mp3 of that cut, and / or the 2 separated parts and I'll listen some more! 8)

We could actually work on their "Piledriver Blues", which JMMiller covered a couple summers ago at camp! I probably have that on MD.
Title: Re: M & O Blues - Duet
Post by: waxwing on December 12, 2005, 05:03:25 PM
Aw, Miller, you gave away our next duet!-G-

Thanks again folks for all the great feedback.

I thought everybody speeds up toward the end, as long as you do it together. -G-

And, Miller, I figured out how to manipulate the pan a little more subtly in Garageband so I was able to boost your part a bit to get a good balance while it was still in stereo. Glad you like it.

Yeah, I've pretty much worked out Minnie's guitar part and am singing it close to speed. Joe's part seems to be all in the bass, so once we get that sorted we can start workin' it. Really, what you were doin' on Friday, sorta goin' in and out of the boogie walk up, sounded good to me. But it would be good to get some other opinions. Anybody?

Now you know we're gonna rush on this one, it's a train for dang sake!

All for now.
John C.
SimplePortal 2.3.7 © 2008-2020, SimplePortal