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Hey Guys!

I was lucky enough to be able to pick the tune of the month for January, and I've decided to go with Chick Corea's "500 Miles High". I'm fairly new to this TOTM thing, so please let me know if this has already been chosen in the past (couldn't find it in the search, so I'm guessing it's fair game).

I've always loved this tune, and figured this was a good opportunity to learn it. If anyone needs a playalong, I can hook you up. I have a concert pitch lead sheet that I'll be transposing as well if anyone needs one.


Looking forward to hearing everyone on this one! Here's a nice version I found on YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XN_VeD58kyY
 

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As a longtime fan of both samba music AND Chick Corea, I'm looking forward to having a go at this one. It's one of those tunes we read through a time or two at rehearsals but never performed.

From Return to Forever's (RTF's) Light at a Feather with Airto on percussion and Flora Purim on vocals...if you're into this type of music those first two RTF albums are amazing. Joe Farrell is great on woodwinds, one of the GREAT doublers...
500 Miles High (lp version)
 

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u

Had no intention of jumping in this soon, just happened to be looking at this today and had a reed with some good stuff happening. So I took a quick go at it... I did two takes, this was #2 (although the first 50 secs was from the first intro). I faded as there was still about another 4 minutes of jamming on the end there!

500 Minutes Long


ps - I Actually timed it pretty good that was in real time where I started the backing part....
 

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Had no intention of jumping in this soon, just happened to be looking at this today and had a reed with some good stuff happening. [....]
500 Minutes Long
Nice one Shawn, very melodic playing, good tenor sound that's recognizably yours, lots of good ideas. Listened several times. Great start to the month's takes!

Happy New Year to all!

Howard
 

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This is a great choice IMO from StrongD, this would be a great no. To work into my repertory, even for my middle of the road type function gigs. As with last months from Howard's selection of a great std. Anyway I hope to do this classic justice in the comming weeks.
Hamish
 

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I have combined my ver. Of 500 miles high with a short film I made about the problems with Israel and Palestine.
We have lots of Jews and Arabs in London and they manage to live together peacefully. The dialogue has been cut, but it’s a simple message. Hope you enjoy.

http://youtu.be/TrvfQXsk5mM
 

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Hamish - I like the soprano sound you were getting. A little reminiscent of Wayne Shorter with the articulation, but a little darker rounder sound. Very Nice. Cool arrangement I liked the variety of textures in there. Did note a few pitch discrepancies (a little under), but overall very engaging and interesting take. Great job.

Hope we see a few more folks dip their toes in the water this month, it's really an interesting tune with a lot of possibilities. I'm sure I'll jump back in with a more traditional Brazilian samba take or something before the end of the month, maybe I'll have a go on alto next time...

In the mean time, here's a little Stan Getz take on this..wasn't sure anyone shared this one yet.
500 Miles High
 

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Hamish - I like the soprano sound you were getting. A little reminiscent of Wayne Shorter with the articulation, but a little darker rounder sound. Very Nice. Cool arrangement I liked the variety of textures in there. Did note a few pitch discrepancies (a little under), but overall very engaging and interesting take. Great job.

Hope we see a few more folks dip their toes in the water this month, it's really an interesting tune with a lot of possibilities. I'm sure I'll jump back in with a more traditional Brazilian samba take or something before the end of the month, maybe I'll have a go on alto next time...

In the mean time, here's a little Stan Getz take on this..wasn't sure anyone shared this one yet.
500 Miles High
Thanks Fsax
Thats some compliment to be compared to a major Jazz Artist, Playing Sop as i am primarily a Classical Clarinetist.
The notes that were under must have been my blue notes. Ha Ha.
Anyway look forward to your samba version.
Hamish
 

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I setup a quick bossa nova backing track and recorded a few takes on alto this time... called T2 the "master", thought the impov had a little better flow...alt. take was the third of 3 complete takes I did.

Bossa alto take (master)

Bossa alto (alternate)
 

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I setup a quick bossa nova backing track and recorded a few takes on alto this time... called T2 the "master", thought the impov had a little better flow...alt. take was the third of 3 complete takes I did.

Bossa alto take (master)

Bossa alto (alternate)
Hi Fsax
I would pick bits from both takes, I preferred your longer phrases, but saying that if the backing was more up front, the short phrases could quite well fit in nicely, especially with a latin feel. Do you prefer to mix with a very quiet backing. I have a 4 CD set of S.Getz with his bossa arr, Jobin & Astrid gilberto
In storage, ( for about 5 yrs) must search it out. Anyway an enjoyable listen.
Hamish
PS. I think everybody else has left town.
 

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Hi Fsax
PS. I think everybody else has left town.
No, I've been listening since commenting on Shawn's tenor take, and enjoyed both your arrangement and Shawn's alto take (just heard the master take so far). Will comment more shortly. I've also been shedding pretty hard on this tune and other stuff. To keep things moving I'll post a take from the 9th, even though it's not where I'd like to be in terms of having "inside" ideas to play over all sections of the tune, and faster lines at will. Would love to discuss more what to play over this tune, and what to practice to help, so please share ideas, but I feel the need to figure out what I've been playing a little more first (some of what I play is based on harmonic stuff I worked out, others just pretty much blowing at this point) before saying much myself. Anyway here's a first shot:

http://db.tt/l1zRKvtQ

Sax setup: Yamaha YTS-23 sax, vintage Broadus 4+ Hard Rubber mouthpiece opened to around 0.110, Van Doren Java unfiled 2.5 reed.

Recording: Backing track played over KRK Rokit 5 monitors, recorded with sax "through the air" on a Tascam DR-07 Mk II portable digital recorder (using the built-in mics), edited in Audacity and exported from Audacity to mp3 with VBR 0 "best quality" setting. Incidentally I think the KRK's and the Tascam are both great pieces of budget gear.

Howard
 

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Howard - Sound is sure coming along. Some interesting sequences in there. I liked your patience letting things unfold and develop naturally early on. Some interesting longer horizontal passages, a little more development on some simple melodic or rhythmic ideas might help things along on a piece like this where the tonal center jumps around a bit. Trying to play long connected lines over all those chords is a bit of a challenge, at least for me it was...

fwiw, I'm just glad I could get a few tries in, being such a fan of this style. I'm trying to work on other priorities with my limited time, like trying not to scoop into the beginning of so many notes on alto, voice leading, etc. With my alto takes, all I really tried to do this time was connect the chords better and play nice time and melody...often i find myself playing too many notes, not really hitting the changes. So I took a more laid back approach...
 

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No, I've been listening since commenting on Shawn's tenor take, and enjoyed both your arrangement and Shawn's alto take (just heard the master take so far). Will comment more shortly. I've also been shedding pretty hard on this tune and other stuff. To keep things moving I'll post a take from the 9th, even though it's not where I'd like to be in terms of having "inside" ideas to play over all sections of the tune, and faster lines at will. Would love to discuss more what to play over this tune, and what to practice to help, so please share ideas, but I feel the need to figure out what I've been playing a little more first (some of what I play is based on harmonic stuff I worked out, others just pretty much blowing at this point) before saying much myself. Anyway here's a first shot:

http://db.tt/l1zRKvtQ

Sax setup: Yamaha YTS-23 sax, vintage Broadus 4+ Hard Rubber mouthpiece opened to around 0.110, Van Doren Java unfiled 2.5 reed.

Recording: Backing track played over KRK Rokit 5 monitors, recorded with sax "through the air" on a Tascam DR-07 Mk II portable digital recorder (using the built-in mics), edited in Audacity and exported from Audacity to mp3 with VBR 0 "best quality" setting. Incidentally I think the KRK's and the Tascam are both great pieces of budget gear.

Howard
Hi guys
Just listening to Howard's ver. I have come to the conclusion, somewhat late in the day, that for me as a non improviser, more embellishing type, that the TOTM is not for me. I can obviously see what you guys are trying to do, but I don't feel I can add much meaningfully comments to your endeavours. You live for jazz, and are well read in all it's facets, unlike myself, who is more a melody / Classical instrumental type. Over the time and two tunes I posted, I was grateful for all your comments, and for Fsax to compare my sop playing with mr Shorter, well unbelievable. So with that I bid you all adieu, and wish you all well in your musical pursuits.
Hamish
 

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PS. Forgive me for using TOTM to plug one of my short films, one of my other passions.
 

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Here is my take. 500 Moles

I have a used a new mpc - Drake Bergonzi 8** with RJS 2H and Drake Lig. I am still experimenting with this mpc with reeds etc, the Drake lig I find very fiddly to use, so I might do another take later on with my usual mpc.
 

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Everyone's takes are fantastic .. it's kind of hard for me to make a useful comment on any of them, other than they're very inspiring.
Nobby - I tried the lig that came with my Drake .. it lasted about 5 minutes - no idea where it is now, but that's one less stress to deal with !! :mrgreen:

I struggled with the timing in the head .. and the solo section is the usual mess.
I thought about playing lines through the chord changes, but I'm just trying not to get lost, and keeping things separate helps.(more to work on .. :evil:)

50 feet high and clipping the trees ..
 

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I struggled with the timing in the head .. and the solo section is the usual mess.
I thought about playing lines through the chord changes, but I'm just trying not to get lost, and keeping things separate helps.(more to work on .. :evil:)

50 feet high and clipping the trees ..
Sounds quite good, Brendan, for someone who, like me, is I guess still learning. I wasn't staring at a chart, but I didn't notice the timing problem on the head if there was any. Also it sounded like you indeed avoided getting lost, and were "inside" the changes during your solo... to be able to do that is an essential step to really playing a tune. Fantastic job with that... I am definitely not as solid (yet?) on this tune in that regard. Obviously some of the lines were not as interesting or complex as they'll become as you practice more... but they definitely had harmonic logic to them and there were some cool twists and turns in there. Sounds like you have a good ear.

When I just blow on this tune, instead of concentrating on playing roots or chord arpeggios, sometimes I'm not always conscious of precisely where I am in the changes although eventually a milestone comes by that lets me know. Whereas it sounds like you know where you are and what's coming.

Also, it's very cool to hear a bari on this kind of tune, and your tone and phrasing worked for it. Quite a nice tone on what I imagine is not an easy instrument to play. Enjoyed this take a lot and will listen to it again.

Howard
 
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