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Originally Posted by Nahum
With the jazz vocalists of my circle, the songs of Kern, Gershwin, and other Broadway (and of course valentine) luminaries were almost always performed in full

Interesting .. Chet Baker, Anita O'Day, Frank Sinatra, Sarah Vaughan, even Ella Fitzgerald (who often did sing verses) never sang the verse for 'my funny valentine' as far as I can tell. You have to go to Streisand or show type performances usually. I don't think there are any instrumental versions that play the verse, not that I can find anyway. I guess performance practices vary.

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Originally Posted by beeboss
even Ella Fitzgerald (who often did sing verses) never sang the verse for 'my funny valentine' as far as I can tell.

First of all , Linda Ronstadt with Nelson Riddle recorded all songs with intros ; and of course Ella:

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Originally Posted by Nahum
First of all , Linda Ronstadt with Nelson Riddle recorded all songs with intros ; and of course Ella:

I stand corrected. I only checked the other Ella version (where there is no verse)...


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Originally Posted by Dantheboogieguy
Once thing that I dislike with lead sheets is the fact that they don't include the full tune. My funny valentine has an intro but most lead sheets refrain from giving the full tune with the intro. Also, why did they only give out the tune as a lead sheet? I mean, did they never publish a full piano score for piano and vocals?
For many tunes, eg My funny valetine, Autumn leaves and But beautiful all you have is lead sheets. Why is this?
Is it even true that there are no piano scores? People have only given me lead sheets so I assumed that it is all that we had.


Verses from that era were presented as intros 8 to 16 bars delivered ‘rubato’ and sometimes in a declamatory manner. They were not typically repeated elsewhere in the song lyrically or melody wise, so are not like what verses are considered now in normal song form. More like a preamble leading to and presenting the song’s true beginning. They never seemed to have the memorable “Bits’ of either words or melody.

If you want to learn jazz; read the Wikipedia page linked previously many times.
Buy the Real Book, vol 6.

Sometimes piano scores can be useful though, not as a substitution for the ability to handle lead sheets but as an example of how ‘in one way’ the song could be played.

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Originally Posted by emenelton
Verses from that era were presented as intros 8 to 16 bars delivered ‘rubato’ and sometimes in a declamatory manner. They were not typically repeated elsewhere in the song lyrically or melody wise, so are not like what verses are considered now in normal song form. More like a preamble leading to and presenting the song’s true beginning. They never seemed to have the memorable “Bits’ of either words or melody.
It is very sad that over time the popular taste of instant aesthetic pleasure cuts off vers of songs belonging to the Great American Songbook, without understanding their melodic and compositional value in general. It's like considering the three and a half movements of Beethoven's ninth symphony as an optional preamble to Ode to Joy.

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Originally Posted by Nahum
Originally Posted by emenelton
Verses from that era were presented as intros 8 to 16 bars delivered ‘rubato’ and sometimes in a declamatory manner. They were not typically repeated elsewhere in the song lyrically or melody wise, so are not like what verses are considered now in normal song form. More like a preamble leading to and presenting the song’s true beginning. They never seemed to have the memorable “Bits’ of either words or melody.
It is very sad that over time the popular taste of instant aesthetic pleasure cuts off vers of songs belonging to the Great American Songbook, without understanding their melodic and compositional value in general. It's like considering the three and a half movements of Beethoven's ninth symphony as an optional preamble to Ode to Joy.



These intros to me could be compared to when somebody is going to tell you a fact but first insist on telling you a long story to lead up to it.

There are so many songs that have the rubato intro which is technically called a verse. I use to wonder why in Jazz Charts, an 'A' section was called the chorus and the 'B' section a bridge. It wasn't until I learned about these types of verse's that I understood.

The Jazzer's took the parts of the songs they thought were good and left the intros out.

The spoken word intro on Cannonball Adderley Quintet - "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" (1966) - could be considered a verse like we're discussing.

Its a preamble to the song proper:
-shares no material that relates to the song melodically and compositionally or ever reappears in the song-
-is significantly long in length and stands on its own if read or heard separately-
-decidedly declamatory-
-does prepare the listener for the song proper-
-Cannonball Adderley considered it important to be part of the song that his piano player wrote-
-is not included in other performances of the piece-

now about getting rid of the boring bits of Beethoven's Ninth - not a good idea!

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just quickly--

There have been many such threads here, but the ultimate answer always is---you gotta do it and stop thinking about doing it.

If you aren't compelled to pick stuff out on your own, by ear, then you don't really want to do it.

It has to be a situation where you can't stop yourself from trying, and every session leads to more curiosity and more tries. More and more issues arise, and you can't stop--they spur you on. Every bit of knowledge learned leads to more seeking.

BTW, remember that Lennon and McCartney knew nothing, book-wise--only what they heard. And look where that got them.

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Originally Posted by rogerzell
jBTW, remember that Lennon and McCartney knew nothing, book-wise--only what they heard. And look where that got them.
And every second of us is Lennon, and every third is McCartney.

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me too.

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Nahum--you're right. I guess there's no point in trying.

Dan--forget it, you'll never be able to play jazz.

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Originally Posted by rogerzell


BTW, remember that Lennon and McCartney knew nothing, book-wise--only what they heard. And look where that got them.

Originally Posted by rogerzell
Nahum--you're right. I guess there's no point in trying.

Dan--forget it, you'll never be able to play jazz.

This is one possibility. There is another: continue to poke around "without books" for about 30 years, and see what will happens - hi,Donald!.
In case there is so much time .

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Originally Posted by Nahum
This is one possibility. There is another: continue to poke around "without books" for about 30 years, and see what will happens - hi,Donald!.
In case there is so much time .

Right again--spend that 30 years just reading--like Jelly Roll and Armstrong did.

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Originally Posted by rogerzell
Right again--spend that 30 years just reading--like Jelly Roll and Armstrong did.
..., and one in four of us will be like J.R. Morton, one in five will be Satchmo.

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one in 6 will be Homer Simpson

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Originally Posted by rogerzell
just quickly--

There have been many such threads here, but the ultimate answer always is---you gotta do it and stop thinking about doing it.

If you aren't compelled to pick stuff out on your own, by ear, then you don't really want to do it.

It has to be a situation where you can't stop yourself from trying, and every session leads to more curiosity and more tries. More and more issues arise, and you can't stop--they spur you on. Every bit of knowledge learned leads to more seeking.

BTW, remember that Lennon and McCartney knew nothing, book-wise--only what they heard. And look where that got them.

Exactly so.

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Jazz started in the southern US where the majority was uneducated. Songs would pass from person to person by ear. Different people would repeat a song in a slightly different way but still maintain the main theme. Improvisation is common.

The people who are trained in Classical tend to follow sheet music and reproduce the notes as written. Many are not used to improvisation so anything that sounded ok but not as written is somehow wrong.

When we go to a concert that features new compositions, it's the first time the composer performs his work. The musicians are given sheet music to follow. In a typical Jazz concert, the audience wouldn't expect to hear the copy of an old song by Duke Ellington. Performers would improvise around the song so that the theme can be heard but not exactly as recorded years ago. Modern Jazz is mainly improvised music. The performer(s) are not playing the works of a dead composer / songwriter. There is no sheet music to follow and music gets created on the spot. The only limit is the performance time.

Besides a few Jazz & Blues books recommended by the teacher notated with the bass clef & chords on top like lead sheets, I also have the sheet music of "Blue Skies" by Irving Berlin & "What a Wonderful World" as sung by Louis Armstrong. These are uplifting pieces to play during the last 2 years of lockdowns & re-openings. Someone who is trained in Classical music would be reading the 2 clefs in a straightforward way and doing the repeats the same way. Not everybody knows what is swing rhythm and would play pairs of 8th notes evenly. Those who are into Jazz would be more inclined to fill in the bass with chords and improvise whenever possible.

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Although I have a jazz piano course online I have to say that playing with other people, whatever their standard, has been so important for me over the past 50 years. I have also been lucky enough to find teachers and evening classes in London but this is obviously difficult for many people.
Start by learning scales.
Then discover how these scales are the building blocks of chords.
Then see how these chords link together. This will lead you to well known sequences like II-V-I and the I-VI-II-V turnaround.
For example, take the C major scale: CDEFGAB and from this you can build 7 chords:
C+E+G+B = C major 7
D+F+A+C = D minor 7
G+B+D+F=D dominant 7
And from these 3 chords you have the II-V-I:
Dmin7-G7-Cmaj7.
So many jazz standards contain this sequence but you need to gradually recognise them in different keys.
Learn Jazz Piano Online

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