Monday, February 9, 2009

All of You w/Lee Pardini + Yuichi Hirakawa

"All of You" written by Cole Porter
Lee Pardini (Keyboard)
Noriyuki "Ken" Okada (Bass)
Yuichi Hirakawa (Drums)
Recorded live on Feb 3, 2009 at Sumika, Los Altos, CA

So here's "All of You" from February 3 Sumika gig. This song was written by one of the greatest composers of all time, Cole Porter. As often seen in his compositions, this tune has a bright color with slight touch of shade, which I like very much.

After vamping in the intro, the theme (or "head") starts from 0:21. I used 2-beat feel with some rushing or delaying to make it sound interesting, with the intention to start walking in 4 beat sometime later. With Lee's cue, I start my bass solo from 1:00. I extended the 2-beat floating feel for my 2-chorus solo, finally starting to accelerate by running bass line to bridge to Lee's keyboard solo. Yuichi and I were perfectly in sync on the groove change. Even from 3:39 to 3:48, we nicely synchronized in "suspending" the groove and restarting. It was great that we pleasingly locked the groove while backing Lee's solo. A good swing feel like this will never make you bored! (Um, that's called "praising your own painting" in Japanese proverb...)

There were so many nice interplays like the motif of quarter notes from 3:56 to 4:01, or the motif using syncopation from 4:14 to 4:22. From 5:42 starts Yuichi's drums solo. It could sound like a free solo but it actually flows over the tune's chord changes in constant tempo. As I start to play the last section of the song from 6:42, Lee joins in to build up to get back to the theme (or "head out").

So we play the head out from 6:49. If you listen closely, you will notice the brief call-and-responses between Lee and me. After 7:24 is the ending (or "outro"). In general, whether or not you play the outro is decided on the fly depending on the momentum of the sound. This time we had pretty nice solos that made us feel like playing a little bit more, so we played some lingering outro with some floating feel. As Lee cues from 8:11 by playing the last phrase of the head, we end the tune.

My favorite moment of this recording is definitely Lee's keyboard solo with the swing groove generated by Yuichi and me. Just as they say, it don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing!

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