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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Rolltrane has very generously given me the opportunity to pick this December's Tune of the Month. Since it's already past midnight Dec. 1 at the longitude of Finland, Egypt and South Africa, and points east, I think it's time to get started. I've chosen Harold Arlen (music) and Johnny Mercer (lyrics)'s My Shining Hour. This tune works well as anything from a mid-tempo swinger to an uptempo burner. The changes aren't too difficult, and it seemed like a good choice for those of us who are learning to work on straight-ahead playing and ii-V7's, and a chance for more experienced folks to blow like mad. This tune seems to be a bit neglected in the jazz discography, but the version by John Coltrane, from the 1961 Atlantic LP Coltrane Jazz, is, to my mind, a classic. It was recorded on Dec. 2, 1959, with Paul Chambers on bass, Jimmy Cobb on drums, and Wynton Kelly on piano. Here is the Youtube video:


PM me if you want to discuss backing-track possibilities...if you don't have a track I may be able to point you toward one. This song seems to be standardly in concert Eb major but Coltrane did it in C major (at about 220 bpm) and it would be cool to have a track in that key as well if someone wants to work on it.

I will post some more information soon, including chords and other youtube videos that I especially liked. There are different sets of changes out there for this song (though they agree on large parts of it), so be aware of that and use the chart that comes with your backing track.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Here are links to some chord charts for My Shining Hour. They are similar to the chords in the Real Book 6th edition, and different from those at Wikifonia.

Usual concert key: E flat:

http://db.tt/5EwR80vQ

Usual tenor sax key: F

http://db.tt/YTzSx2Mq

Note again that Coltrane played this in concert C. I'm trying to transcribe Paul Chambers' bassline and determine the chords from that and by ear; I'll post charts for that version in C and D if get to that point. I'll also add charts for alto sax, at some point.

Here are the above changes, in C. This is concert key for the Coltrane version, but of course you can also use the chart to play alto with an Eb backing:

http://db.tt/BzCNyt3E

Chart in D, for tenor players with C backing:

http://db.tt/RQYBVBFU

I believe the Aebersold and Real Book play-along tracks are in concert E flat. I've listened to a snippet of the Aebersold on Amazon, where you can buy the .mp3 for US $0.99 (but you have to sign up for their cloudplayer, so I didn't).
 

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Whenever it's time to work on a great American standard (Harold Arlen-Johnny Mercer), I tend to check out some vocal versions. Here's Ella with a ballad take and a more uptempo live version from Betty Carter ...for your listening pleasure!

I'll have some takes of my own soon....

Ella Fitzgerald - My Shining Hour

Betty Carter - My SHining Hour
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi Shawn---

Indeed Ella does this beautifully, that was probably my favorite of the vocal versions I've perused on the Tube.

The link to the Betty Carter doesn't work at the moment... would love to hear it!

For a more uptempo jazz vocal version, my pick of the Youtube videos so far (partly a sentimental one since my folks live around the corner from the University of the District of Columbia) is

Krislyn Perry with the UDC Jazz Ensemble.

Not quite Betty Carter, and the scat modulation might be a tad corny, but it swings, and I like her upbeat but not too hammy interpretation.

For sax versions, there's a surprising dearth of the greats (at least on Youtube, and in my collection of recordings) beyond Coltrane, but besides the Stan Getz link that swaman just posted (I agree that he seems to be working hard, and though he was in poor health and just a year from the end of his life, he does some beautiful things with the tune), there's

Pepper Adams.


I also enjoyed hearing altoists Kazunori Sawada and Fumito Takeuchi jam on this too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Here's some Dutch players having fun with it - a charming version with actually very good scatting (most of the times I find scatting just a bad idea).

Sanna van Vliet and Ferdinand Povel:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hk7H65-lrwo&feature=youtube_gdata_player
Thanks, Rennie! I enjoyed the singing, but folks should definitely stick around for the sax solo... Mr. Povel is totally relaxed and in control at a pretty fast tempo and spinning out nice lines with harmonic clarity.

(By the way, I added a chart in C to my earlier post with chord changes...)

Howard
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Sinatra always would include the verse... I think I will too.
Do you mean the introduction ("This moment, this minute and each second in it.... ")? I like it too, that will be cool to hear. The Ella Fitzgerald version linked by fsaxwas9 in an earlier post has it. There's a scratchy but nice and relatively straight LP version, perhaps from the 1940s or early 50s (to judge by the screaming kids at the end---that is if they are are live and not dubbed in) worth hearing from Sinatra on youtube that omits it:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QINEUOU3rTY

I have been looking for another Sinatra version (there was none in my medium-sized Sinatra collection), so I'd love to know about the ones you've heard Hutmo.

For those who want a chart that, unlike the ones I posted, includes the introduction, the Wikifonia charts linked by Mr. PeeBee above include it, and they can be transposed to any key at the website, downloaded, and printed.

Another vocal version I've liked, on the non-jazzy, pop/Broadway side with full strings 'n harp treatment and including the introduction, is Liza Minnelli's:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qqk3r_Cmkk4

I didn't realize she was this good of a ballad singer.

Howard
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Don't forget: if you would like to post a take but need a backing track, PM me with key and tempo preferences. Our own Oilywrag has made some fabulous ones that I've been working with. If you want to do it in C like Coltrane, there's a medium-tempo organ and drums one, and a fast (215) one with standard rhythm section and a flavor similar to the Trane performance. Changes are from SOTW member Andrew Frankhouse's transcription of Coltrane's solo (although they may not match exactly the changes on the record):

http://www.andrewfrankhouse.com/PDF/MSHBb.pdf

These changes are quite close to the ones in the charts I posted (except that Andrew has transposed them to D major for tenor sax players); I'll detail the few differences later. The first page of Andrew's transcription is good for the head as played by Coltrane, too

I actually find it easier to play this tune in C, because it avoids the low-register spatula keys. Doubtless Coltrane transposed it to C to avoid them.
 

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To play in C concert, get the Aebersold mp3 download from Amazon in Eb. Get Audacity (free) and after importing the Aebersold mp3 to Audacity, click Effects and change the key. Then export it to a place of your choice. Now you can practice in Coltrane's key. I think the key of C version is a bit more difficult, but practice will help. Gotta go practice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Nice to hear from you Glenn! If someone wants to go crazy with Audacity or some other audio editor, I guess they could do it this way! Would be fun to hear. In any case I'd love to hear a take from you if you feel like posting one, whatever the key.

Howard

When I lived in Chicago in the early '90s, this was a common jam session tune. We would often start in C and move to Eb in the second chorus, alternating choruses in C and Eb for the rest of the tune. Really fun way to play it!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I edited my post with charts, above, to put the Real Bookish changes up in D as well, for tenor.

This is the link to the D chart:

http://db.tt/RQYBVBFU

The differences with Tom's C backings and the Andrew Frankhouse transcription of JC's head and solo (written in D) are minimal... speaking now in D, the main one is that in measure 23 of the main form (31 in the AF transcription), AF and Tom have an F major chord where the RB6 has F#-7#5 B7#9. Both sound fine, the first is tonic for the preceding ii V7, the second is a ii V7 for the E-7 in the next measure. When I do it on piano I sometimes fall into a plain F# half-diminished, B7, that sounds OK too. But I guess the C backings have the major chord. (Note that Andrew says the changes in his transcription should not be taken as authoritative for the JC performance.)

The other differences are more minor, primarily there's another #5 that is in the RB and not in AF, and the half-diminished chords in the RB in measures 8 and 10 of the main form (16 and 18 of the AF transcription) are straight minor in AF.

Even more minor points: RB has a flat 9 on the dominant in measure 8 (standard extension in this context, diatonic in DMaj, so this is not a significant difference), and AF has the dominant chord in measure 12 (his measure 20) marked alt, also I guess reasonably standard since it's resolving to a minor tonic (B minor, speaking in D). The Real Book also has sus4's on the dominant chords in measures 2 and 26 (A7 speaking in D). I didn't write that in the charts I put up because it doesn't seem important to a pianist or bass player... the 4th is in the melody here, though, and I think that's why it's in the chart.

Howard
 

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This is a great number from the American song Book, one I never heard before, and really worthwhile adding to the rep.
Do members post their version, or just add links to famous artists ? I know Cafesaxophone post there members versions.
PS.
This is a great ver. From the lady who knows how to sing a ballad.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V03hG81ESXM&feature=youtube_gdata_player
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Hi Hamish (and anyone else lurking who needs clarification on this point)---

Yes, the main point of the thread is for members to post their own versions, audio and sometimes video too, recorded with a backing track or live on a gig... pros like many here or learners like me... I hope we'll get to hear yours. PM me if you need a backing track, there's also an Aebersold one in Eb for 99 cents US for the mp3 on Amazon.

The links to existing versions usually appear early in the thread to share some of the most interesting performances and give people ideas of what can be done with the tune. If you check out the main TOTM index thread, you can see what tunes have been done in the past and follow the links to hear what people have played on them:

http://forum.saxontheweb.net/showth...MAIN-THREAD-INDEX-since-November-2009-onwards

Cheers,

Howard

Do members post their version, or just add links to famous artists ? I know Cafesaxophone post there members versions.
 
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