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Re: [RedHotJazz] Take It From The Verse...

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  • David W. Littlefield
    ... Hi Dave. I m very interested in verses, specifically because I publish fake books for musicians and have increasingly included verses in my sheets. This is
    Message 1 of 7 , Jul 10, 2007
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      At 01:35 PM 07/10/07, you wrote:
      >-- it surprises a lot of people (no one here, of
      >course) that a lot of jazz standards we know and love are really only
      >known by their chorus'... but virtually all of them have verses that -
      >for whatever reason, have been eliminated from subsequent versions...
      >It's really only through sheet music that I know they exist -- it's
      >like a language being shed of its elements!
      >
      >I'd love to find more recorded versions that include these.
      >
      >For instance, how about a good version of 'Dinah'with the verse (I
      >think the Boswell Sisters have one, but is it the real verse) ? 'China
      >Boy'? 'Nobody's Sweetheart'? 'Some of These Days'?
      >
      >I know if anybody knows, the mavens of this list will!
      >Dave

      Hi Dave. I'm very interested in verses, specifically because I
      publish fake books for musicians and have increasingly included
      verses in my sheets. This is due in part to increased interest by
      musicians with a hobbyist interest in the tunes, partly because there
      are some neat verses that truly enhance performance of the tunes. The
      "jazzbos", as I call 'em, weren't/aren't interested in the
      verses--they just use the parts of tunes they can jazz up, and verses
      generally don't jazz readily. Verses are really more for vocalists.

      So, Dave, to get recordings with the verses, you go to the non-jazz
      pop records by "feature" singers like Annette Hanshaw, Gene Austin,
      Rudy Vallee, Bing Crosby, Al Jolson Sophie Tucker, all of whom
      usually sang the verses, more or less straight. Sophie Tucker sang
      the verse of "Some of these days", on, I think, both her 20s records.
      On the records by dance orchestras, the vocalists generally sing only
      the chorus, but many records do play the verse instrumentally.

      Many records were made by bands (eg. California Ramblers) that used
      orchestrations ("stock charts", "stocks") put out by the same
      publishers as the sheet music. The charts were written in sections:
      1. melody played one or more times, often with vocal; 2. verse (no
      vocal) in a key higher than the melody. 3. in the same or higher key,
      a clarinet trio or something; 4. one or more out choruses. Usually
      the charts when played in full were longer than the 78s, so sections
      were omitted. To the uninitiated listener, the verse just sounds like
      a 16-bar interlude.

      That'll get you started. Ask me questions!

      --Sheik
      http://americanmusiccaravan.com
    • Walter Five
      A couple of good versions of Dinah were recorded by Fats Waller and his Rhythm, one studio version (for sure) and a couple of radio performances exist, IIRC.
      Message 2 of 7 , Jul 11, 2007
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        A couple of good versions of Dinah were recorded by Fats Waller and his Rhythm, one studio version (for sure) and a couple of radio performances exist, IIRC. "If you know her, then show her!" Fats wrote that song, I'm pretty sure.

        And I may be confused but didn't Cab Calloway do a wailing vocal version of "Some Of These Days?" I recall a clip of it being used in the film "Forbidden Zone" (Danny Elfman used several 30's and 40's record clips in that film, it was his first movie soundtrack!); and I know for a fact that a good vocal of it was done by the "last of the red-hot mamas", Sophie Tucker. Can't forget Sophie! ;-)

        Dan Van Landingham <danvanlandingham@...> wrote:
        Dave Stuckey <dwstuck@...> wrote:

        Hi folks --
        I'd love to find more recorded versions that include these.

        For instance, how about a good version of 'Dinah'with the verse (I
        think the Boswell Sisters have one, but is it the real verse) ? 'China
        Boy'? 'Nobody's Sweetheart'? 'Some of These Days'?

        I know if anybody knows, the mavens of this list will!



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      • James O'Briant
        A couple of other done to death tunes where one seldom hears the verse, but the verse is worth hearing, are Avalon and Indiana. Jim O Briant Tuba Gilroy,
        Message 3 of 7 , Jul 11, 2007
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          A couple of other "done to death" tunes where one seldom hears the verse,
          but the verse is worth hearing, are "Avalon" and "Indiana."

          Jim O'Briant
          Tuba
          Gilroy, CA
        • Dave Stuckey
          Hi David (and all) -- Thanks for the very interesting reply... yeah, it would make sense that these are found mostly in pop versions, since most/all of these
          Message 4 of 7 , Jul 12, 2007
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            Hi David (and all) --

            Thanks for the very interesting reply... yeah, it would make sense
            that these are found mostly in 'pop' versions, since most/all of these
            were pop songs to begin with, right?

            in fact, the only time I've heard many of these verses are by pop
            singers... for instance, China Boy was by Gene Austin - this didn't
            include the verse.

            Yes, Cab did a crazy "Some of These Days", but just the chorus, I
            think... the first time I heard it with lyrics at all was a late Mills
            Bros. version.

            I feel like I've heard Teagarden sing a verse (or was it a bridge?) to
            "Nobody's Sweetheart".

            Some of the 40's & 50's revivalists like Clancy Hayes are good for
            verses (first time I heard the verse to "Ballin' the Jack": 'folks
            down Georgia way, 'bout to go insane...' )

            "Dinah" goes back to 1924, right? Pretty sure Fats didn't write it...

            Just discovered the other day (via Ethel Waters' 1922 version) that
            there's words to "That Da Da Strain"! Maybe, like the "Tonight Show"
            theme, they came after the fact?

            Anyway, it's fun to use these verses even in jazz versions, since it
            makes the chorus' such a cool 'release' when you get to it... it also
            makes the "done to death" (as James puts it) chestnuts a little more
            interesting to play...

            > Many records were made by bands (eg. California Ramblers) that used
            > orchestrations ("stock charts", "stocks") put out by the same
            > publishers as the sheet music. The charts were written in sections:
            > 1. melody played one or more times, often with vocal; 2. verse (no
            > vocal) in a key higher than the melody. 3. in the same or higher key,
            > a clarinet trio or something; 4. one or more out choruses. Usually
            > the charts when played in full were longer than the 78s, so sections
            > were omitted. To the uninitiated listener, the verse just sounds like
            > a 16-bar interlude.

            Nice - I guess I knew the structure intuitively, but nice to hear it
            broken down...

            Thanks Sheik - I'm headed to your site.

            Dave
          • David W. Littlefield
            ... Hi Dave. Right. ... Hayes for sure. Many people were introduced to the verses by the West Coast bands. ... Harry Akst composed it. ... Actually, the words
            Message 5 of 7 , Jul 12, 2007
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              At 12:58 PM 07/12/07, you wrote:
              >...it would make sense
              >that these are found mostly in 'pop' versions, since most/all of these
              >were pop songs to begin with, right?

              Hi Dave. Right.

              >Some of the 40's & 50's revivalists like Clancy Hayes are good for
              >verses (first time I heard the verse to "Ballin' the Jack": 'folks
              >down Georgia way, 'bout to go insane...' )

              Hayes for sure. Many people were introduced to the verses by the West
              Coast bands.

              >"Dinah" goes back to 1924, right? Pretty sure Fats didn't write it...

              Harry Akst composed it.

              >Just discovered the other day (via Ethel Waters' 1922 version) that
              >there's words to "That Da Da Strain"! Maybe, like the "Tonight Show"
              >theme, they came after the fact?

              Actually, the words to "That doo doo stain" are in the sheet music.
              That's one tune where the verse is commonly played, and accurately,
              whereas the chorus as played bears little resemblance to the sheet music.

              It's true, sometimes lyrics were added to the sheet music, just
              because it was the convention, unless the sheet was a piano solo.

              >Anyway, it's fun to use these verses even in jazz versions, since it
              >makes the chorus' such a cool 'release' when you get to it... it also
              >makes the "done to death" (as James puts it) chestnuts a little more
              >interesting to play...

              The problem is that verses were written for certain tempos and often
              simply don't work well faster, while the choruses may traditionally
              be played fast. "After you've gone" and "Some of these days" are
              prime examples. But this adds to the fun of playing the tune--verse
              slow, chorus fast. "After you've gone"--slow verse, slow chorus, then
              [surprise!] kick it, then after solos, and a couple of out ensembles,
              suddenly slow down the last 4 bars.

              Cheers!
              --Sheik

              > > Many records were made by bands (eg. California Ramblers) that used
              > > orchestrations ("stock charts", "stocks") put out by the same
              > > publishers as the sheet music. The charts were written in sections:
              > > 1. melody played one or more times, often with vocal; 2. verse (no
              > > vocal) in a key higher than the melody. 3. in the same or higher key,
              > > a clarinet trio or something; 4. one or more out choruses. Usually
              > > the charts when played in full were longer than the 78s, so sections
              > > were omitted. To the uninitiated listener, the verse just sounds like
              > > a 16-bar interlude.
              >
              >Nice - I guess I knew the structure intuitively, but nice to hear it
              >broken down...
              >Dave
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