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Every good-bye ain't gone, little woman, and the shut-eye sure ain't sleep. But I said one thing about it, baby, will you please remember me - Frankie Lee Sims, Don't Forget Me Baby

Author Topic: Miller's Breakdown  (Read 122709 times)

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Offline Old Man Ned

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2085 on: October 02, 2019, 01:30:49 PM »
I was wrestling with this one last night and sounds like it got me in the same hold as Prof Scratchy. I've been swithering between E or G in, despite tinkering about with my low strings, I'm going for standard tuning in E.

Really not sure about the bass note....a dampened E on the 6th string at the start and a dampened B(?) on the 6 string for the interlude. Agree, no IV or V chord. Only confident about the last answer though.

All the best,
Ned

Offline Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2086 on: October 02, 2019, 06:28:26 PM »
Hi all,
My apologies to those who have already posted on the puzzler--I had a misprint in the third question which I have since corrected.  I had the guitar interlude starting at 1:40, and it actually starts at 1:50.  At least the question will make more sense now.
All best,
Johnm

Offline blueshome

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2087 on: October 04, 2019, 03:30:12 AM »
Not really sure but I felt it had a cross note feel.

Offline Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2088 on: October 06, 2019, 11:46:00 AM »
Hi all,
Any other takers for the Lawyer Houston puzzler, "Been In The Army Since 1941"?
All best,
Johnm

Offline Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2089 on: October 08, 2019, 09:01:37 AM »
Hi all,
It looks as though everyone who intended to respond to the puzzler on Lawyer Houston's "Been In The Army Since 1941" has done so, so I will post the answers now.

For Lawyer "Soldier Boy" Houston's "Been In The Army Since 1941":
   * His playing position was E position in standard tuning, as Dave and Old Man Ned had it.
   * As he begins the song, Lawyer Houston is hitting a IV note in the bass.  Playing in E position in standard tuning, that would be an A note, which he hit on the open fifth string.  One of the peculiarities of the song is that pretty much from beginning to the end of his rendition, he hits that IV note on the downbeats of measures, going to the open sixth string I note for weaker beats.
   * At the beginning of his guitar interlude, at 1:50, Lawyer Houston is hitting a bVII note in the bass, D, and getting it on the open fourth string.  It's apparent that his strategy for the body of the song was simply to hit open strings in the bass on the sixth, fifth and fourth strings, and reserve fretting for melodic passages only.  This approach also made it possible for Houston to free-hand everything in the left hand and avoid playing and holding down chords in the left hand altogether.
   * It is true, as everyone had it, that Lawyer Houston never hits a IV or V chord in the course of the rendition.

Lawyer Houston's rhythmic feel is different than that of R. L. Burnside, but the droniness of his approach and almost complete lack of chordal information is similar to that of Burnside and other Hill Country players.  Houston was from Texas, I believe, and Lil' Son Jackson's sound in DGDGBE tuning also somewhat anticipated the Hill Country sound.  It's entirely possible that the Hill Country sound was already happening in the late '40s or early '50s, but just didn't get recorded much, though John Lee Hooker and Dr. Ross both anticipated that sound, too, and were from Mississippi.  And I would guess that Fred McDowell was already playing with that kind of sound, too, at that time.

Thanks to those who participated in the puzzler, and I hope folks enjoyed the song.
All best,
Johnm
« Last Edit: October 10, 2019, 06:30:57 AM by Johnm »

Offline Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2090 on: November 09, 2019, 08:57:05 AM »
Hi all,
We haven't had a puzzler for a while and I have a new one for folks who are interested.  It is "Blues For Mattie Mae" by Lattie Murrell.  Here it is:



The questions on "Blues For Mattie Mae" are:
   * What playing position/tuning did Lattie Murrell use to play the song?
   * Describe how what Lattie Murrell frets at :45--:46 helps identify his tuning/playing position.
   * Where does Lattie Murrell fret what he plays from 1:49--1:52?

Please use only your ears and your guitars to arrive at your answers and please don't post any responses before 8:00 AM your time on Tuesday, November 12.  Thanks for your participation and I hope you enjoy the song.
All best,
Johnm

Offline Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2091 on: November 13, 2019, 08:09:40 AM »
Hi all,
Any takers for the Lattie Murrell puzzler?  Come one, come all!
All best,
Johnm

Offline Old Man Ned

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2092 on: November 13, 2019, 01:46:21 PM »
To get the ball rolling, though I've only had around 10 minutes on this, I would say E standard, identified by what I hear as 'hammer ons' the 5th and 4th strings at 45:46 mark. Should get a bit more time over the next couple of days to revisit and figure out the last question and possibly change my mind on what I've put above :-)
All the Best,
Ned

Offline banjochris

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2093 on: November 13, 2019, 04:38:09 PM »
Agree with Ned, and just listening without a guitar in hand I would say that the bit from 1:49-1:52 is the 8th fret of the 2nd string, bent, along with the open 1st string.
Chris

Offline Prof Scratchy

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2094 on: November 14, 2019, 01:16:38 AM »
Yes, E standard tuned down to D, with the moves OMN and Chris have identified. Great performance.


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Offline Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2095 on: November 17, 2019, 11:33:31 AM »
Hi all,
Any other takers for the Lattie Murrell puzzler?  Come one, come all!
All best,
Johnm

Offline blueshome

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2096 on: November 18, 2019, 04:41:49 AM »
Nothing to add to what the Prof said

Offline Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2097 on: November 22, 2019, 09:19:59 AM »
Hi all,
It appears that everyone who intended to respond to the Lattie Murrell puzzler has done so, so I will post the answers.

For "Blues For Mattie Mae",
   * Lattie Murrell's playing position was E position in standard tuning as every responder had it--well done!
   * What Lattie Murrell played from :45--:46 helped identify his playing position because he first played a double-rolled hammer, open-first fret-second fret on his fifth string, going from a IV note on the open string chromatically up to a V note at the second fret, and then did a double-rolled hammer on the fourth string, open-first fret-second fret, going from a bVII note on the open fourth string up chromatically to a I note at the second fret.  In the course of those two double-rolled hammers he eliminated Vestapol and cross-note as being possibilities because both of those tunings put a V note on the open fifth string, and he eliminated EAEGBE as being a possibility as well, because that tuning puts a I note on the open fourth string.  So in that two second interval, he effectively provided all of the information needed to identify his playing position as E position in standard tuning.  Old Man Ned made this point in his initial response to the puzzler.
   * Lattie Murrell fretted the section from 1:49--1:52 exactly as banjochris described it, brushing the bent eighth fret of the second string against the open first string.

Late Murrell is one of those later Mississippi players whom I wish had been recorded more.  I hope folks enjoyed the song and thanks to Old Man Ned, banjochris, Prof Scratchy and blueshome for participating.

All best,
Johnm

Offline Johnm

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2098 on: December 28, 2019, 11:49:42 AM »
Hi all,
It's been a while since we've had a new puzzler, so I thought I would post one before the new year.  It is Mae Glover's "Shake it, Daddy", featuring John Byrd as her accompanist.  Here is the track:



The questions on "Shake It Daddy" are:
   * What playing position/tuning did John Byrd use to play the song?
   * Where did John Byrd fret the ascending/descending run from :05--:06?
   * Where did John Byrd fret what he played in the sixth bar of the form, from :20--:21?
   * Where did John Byrd fret the bass run he played from 2:07--2:10?

Please use only your ears and your guitars to arrive at your answers and please don't post any answers before 8:00 AM your time on December 31, 2019.  Thanks for your participation and I hope you enjoy the song.
All best,
Johnm

Offline mgalup

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Re: Miller's Breakdown
« Reply #2099 on: January 01, 2020, 12:01:59 PM »
Hey Folks,

First, my apologies, as I originally mistakenly posted before the start time of this very thoughtful effort by Mr. Miller. Below are my attempts at the caper!

* What playing position/tuning did John Byrd use to play the song?

-Standard tuning, key of G, no capo

   * Where did John Byrd fret the ascending/descending run from :05--:06?

-B string, chromatic descending and ascending run on frets 0 through 3, interestingly with the low E opening from the fretted G

   * Where did John Byrd fret what he played in the sixth bar of the form, from :20--:21?

-for lack of a more theory-educated way to say this, itís like a C with a G on top, only made minor-sounding by barring the first frets on the B, G, and D strings


   * Where did John Byrd fret the bass run he played from 2:07--2:10?

-Ascending riff starting on the G on 6th string, to B on A string, open D, E on D, open G, and then a little riff to close that out. Not sure if this should be more specifically the exact notes he played in entirety!

Happy New Year to all and thanks, John, for this really amazing resource!

Best,
MG

 


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