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I take a long look smack down in your mind, and what I see, you would not have no friends - Bertha Lee, Mind Reader Blues

Author Topic: Miller's Breakdown  (Read 107838 times)

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Online Old Man Ned

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1845 on: March 14, 2018, 03:16:00 PM »
"a bit too much like gibberish....." !!
It's the opposite to gibberish! This stuff's pure gold for me.

Thanks for taking the time to post such a thorough answer to the Jaybird puzzler, John. 

I loved
"Hearing where melodies live in the scale is really where the rubber meets the road in terms of improvising, too"

Thanks again,
Ned

Online Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1846 on: March 15, 2018, 05:39:50 PM »
Thanks very much for the good words, Old Man Ned.  I'm glad that made sense for you.
All best,
Johnm

Offline Gumbo

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1847 on: March 16, 2018, 04:45:33 PM »
Thanks Johnm, for the puzzle and the breakdown. I shall endeavour to read that through again at least once a week for the foreseeable future. It's heartening to see how close I got without much familiarity with alt tunings.. The three top strings are right and I think I was playing something close to the bass line an octave up?  I even wondered about retuning to Open D, but didn't for lack of time.
I shall persevere!

Online Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1848 on: March 17, 2018, 04:27:22 PM »
Hi Gumbo,
I'm glad the explanation resonated.  I think the encouraging thing about the process, apart from the fact that it really works, is that it is a learned and learnable skill, not some sort of gift that you're either born with or can never have.  It amounts to cataloguing the aural properties of the different playing positions and tunings, based on how they are voiced and what is plausibly reachable in them.  Some positions and tunings are easier to identify than others, but they are all potentially identifiable on the basis of what people play in them and the sounds that result from that.  At this point this thread has close to 300 songs in it, so if you'd like practice in developing these skills of identification, you could just start at the beginning of the thread and work your way through the songs.
All best,
Johnm

Offline Gumbo

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1849 on: March 19, 2018, 10:56:26 AM »
Thanks John, I'll do that. And I wish you all the best with the next 300 ;)

Online Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1850 on: March 20, 2018, 10:55:13 AM »
Hi all,
I have a new puzzler for those of you who are interested.  It is from Little Hat Jones, and it is his "You Don't Mean Me No Good", recorded by Morris Craig in Texas in 1964.  Here is "You Don't Mean Me No Good":




The questions on "You Don't Mean Me No Good" are:
   * What playing position/tuning did Little Hat Jones use to play the song?
   * Where is Little Hat Jones fretting what he plays over the first four bars of the form?
   * Where does Little Hat Jones fret the bass run he plays in the 7th and 11th bars of the form?

Please use only your ears and your guitars to arrive at your answers, and please do not post any answers before 8:00 AM your time on Friday, March 23.  I hope you enjoy "You Don't Mean Me No Good", and thanks for participating.
All best,
Johnm
« Last Edit: July 06, 2018, 09:19:17 AM by Johnm »

Online Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1851 on: March 24, 2018, 11:34:24 AM »
Hi all,
Any takers for the puzzler on Little Hat Jones' "You Don't Mean Me No Good"?  Come one, come all--answer just one question or all three!
All best,
Johnm

Offline Lastfirstface

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1852 on: March 24, 2018, 11:47:03 AM »
- E standard tuned low

- something like 0xx757 rocked down to 0xx656 and back

- second fret 5th string, fourth fret 5th string, second fret 4th string, then a bend at the fifth fret on the 4th string and back down through the last two notes

Offline eric

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1853 on: March 24, 2018, 01:05:20 PM »
Dropped D?
--
Eric

Offline Prof Scratchy

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1854 on: March 25, 2018, 05:20:46 AM »
 * What playing position/tuning did Little Hat Jones use to play the song?
 -Drop D

   * Where is Little Hat Jones fretting what he plays over the first four bars of the form?
 -  0xx565//////; 0xx434///////; 0xx565///////; 0xx232///////

   * Where does Little Hat Jones fret the bass run he plays in the 7th and 11th bars of the form?
 - 5str 0 2; 4str 0 3b 0; 5str 2; 4str 0; 6str 0

Offline blueshome

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1855 on: March 25, 2018, 05:44:39 AM »
Just got to this, I?m with the Professor- I thought the bass run was the giveaway .

Online Old Man Ned

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1856 on: March 26, 2018, 01:00:08 PM »
A bit late coming to this as I've been aware, unusually, without a guitar.  I'm also hearing this in D, assuming dropped D tuning, but I'm having trouble hearing anything on the 6th string. The bass run I'm hearing as open, hammer on to 2nd then 3rd fret on the 5th string. Open 4th string, then a bend at the 3rd fret 4th string. Back to open 5th string,  hammer on to 2nd then 3rd fret, then open 4th string.

Online Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1857 on: March 28, 2018, 04:04:22 PM »
Hi all,
It seems like everyone who intended to respond to the puzzler on Little Hat Jones' "You Don't Mean Me No Good" has done so by now, so I'll post the answers.

For Little Hat Jones' "You Don't Mean Me No Good":
   * His playing position was D in standard tuning.  A couple of factors help to identify the playing position as D in standard tuning as opposed to dropped-D tuning:
   1) He never hits the low D note which would be right there for the taking on the open sixth string if he were playing in dropped-D; and
   2) When he goes to the IV chord in the song, for the first time, at :09, he hits the low root of the IV chord in the bass, while going back and forth between the third fret of the second string and the first fret of the first string in a G7 chord.  Were he playing in dropped-D, he would have to fret that low root of the IV chord at the fifth fret of the sixth string, making what he's playing in the treble at the same time unreachable.  In D standard, the phrase is right under the hand.  (He could be playing in DGDGBE and getting the root of the IV chord on the open fifth string, but a host of other things he plays eliminate that tuning from the realm of possibility.)
   * In the first four bars of the form, Little Hat Jones goes from a D7 in the first bar, played on the first three strings, 5-3-5 going from third to first string, to a D dim7 in the second bar, fretted 4-3-4 on the first three strings, returning to the 5-3-5 D7 in the third bar, and in the fourth bar (after the opening solo) goes from the third fret of the fourth string to the fourth fret of the fourth string in the fourth bar, ending up with a D7 voiced 4-5-3-5 on the top four strings, from fourth string to first. 

This is a really unusual move.  It is somewhat akin to the Scrapper Blackwell-derived move that Robert Johnson used in virtually all of his songs played out of A position in standard tuning, in which he goes from an A7 at 9-8-9 on the top three strings to an A dim7 at 8-7-8 on the top three strings.  In Robert Johnson's case, he's hitting the root of both chords on the open fifth string and voicing the fifth, seventh and third of the two chords on the third, second and first strings, respectively.  In Little Hat Jones' move, he is voicing both chords with the root on the second string, moving the seventh down and back on the third string and the fifth down and back on the first string.  It isn't until the fourth bar of the form that Little Hat Jones adds the third of the chord, on the fourth string.  The move is pretty close to what Doc Watson did two frets higher, in E, on his arrangement of "Deep River Blues", though Doc voiced the third of both chords on the fourth string.

   * The run that Little Hat Jones played in the 7th and 11th bars was played as follow:  It starts on beat two of those bars with a triplet going from the open fifth string to the second fret of the fifth string and then to the open fourth string.  On 3+, he strikes the bent third fret of the fourth string twice.  On beat 4, he hits another triplet, going from the open fourth string down to the second fret of the fifth string and then returning to the open fourth string.  On the downbeat of the 8th and 12th bars, he concludes the run by hitting the open sixth string which is a low E note (relative to his tuning), thus pointing once again to D position in standard tuning rather than dropped-D tuning. 

Thanks to all who participated in this puzzler and I hope you enjoyed the song.  I believe all of Little Hat Jones' recordings from the 1960s have been put up on a youtube channel by Fede Cochero, so if you'd like to hear the rest of his recorded performances from the field recordings done in the '60s, you should look for them there.  It's apparent in listening to them that he could still sing and play really well at that point.  It's a shame he didn't get to record or perform more then, but it's also possible that he wasn't interested in pursuing that at that time of his life. 

I'll look for another puzzler to post soon.

All best,
Johnm   
« Last Edit: March 28, 2018, 04:09:50 PM by Johnm »

Online Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1858 on: April 09, 2018, 11:25:49 AM »
Hi all,
I have a new puzzler for those of you who are interested.  It is Lemuel Turner's "Jake Bottle Blues".  Here it is:



The questions on "Jake Bottle Blues" are:
   * What playing position/tuning did Lemuel Turner use to play the song?
   * Do you think he played the song with the guitar in the conventional position or lap style?  What did you hear that affected your choice?

Please use only your ears and your your guitar to arrive at your answers, and please don't post any answers before 8:00 AM your time on Wednesday, April 11.  Thanks for your participation, and I hope you enjoy the tune.
All best,
Johnm

Online Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #1859 on: April 13, 2018, 05:24:53 PM »
Hi all,
Any takers for the Lemuel Turner "Jake Bottle Blues" puzzler?  Come one, come all!
All best,
Johnm

 


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