Taketh Five, verily.

Taketh Five, verily.

Postby inthegobi » Tue Sep 15, 2015 11:29 pm

David,

Well, I'm working up Desmond's 'Take Five' on alto recorder, with piano. I hope I the composer isn't spinning in his grave.

I thought I was the only one crazy enough, but 'Take Five recorder' in You-know-you-want-to-tube threw up several fascinating versions of 'Take Five'.

I thought the one by the Formosa Recorder Quartet was an especially interesting arrangement - and I love their great-bass player. His instrument is at tenor sax range, but he's doing oddball things - i swear he's singing into it also. The great bass is typically a very quiet instrument; you year a little of its true sound only near the end of his solo.

The japanese student version is just plain cute.

A version for recorder and guitar was very good but I missed hearing the recorder play it through - they switch to guitar too soon for me.

A quartet arrangement marked 'adapted Stan Davis' is good, too.

Preliminary practice puts it as jaunty, even saucy, compared to smoky with an alto sax. It's not *half* bad - it's the other half that's worrying me, heh. I've transposed it up a half step from e-flat minor to e-minor; six flats is not only exceedingly tough without keywork, the sound gets strangled by so many weak tones. It's more for convenience: I don't have to re-write it, just scribble out the G-flat signature and scribble in a single sharp. And then transposed it up an octave: an 'alto' recorder is higher in pitch than a soprano sax. The purity of their tone make recorders sound deceptively low. They're about as close to a pure sine-wave as you can get in an acoustic instrument.

I'm just starting; right now it's more than a little wooden, and not because my instrument is rosewood. Wish me luck!

(Shh. Don't tell James that my plan, if I can pull it off musically, is to do it as a prelude, and pair it with the congregation singing 'Sing of the Lord's Goodness', a "parody" of it, at the Offertory. I'm not a huge fan of the hymn, but the congregation in question happens to know and like that particular it.)

C Kirk, 'setting music back 10,000 years' (Spike Jones)
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Re: Taketh Five, verily.

Postby lasaxman » Wed Sep 16, 2015 1:10 pm

:harp: May the force be with you!
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Re: Taketh Five, verily.

Postby inthegobi » Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:28 pm

I forgot to follow up.

The prelude went well, and people knew the associated hymn and like it on its own. I was happy with the way it came out, I was reasonably jazzy for a complete long-hair (in the old sense).

Only one oddball moment occurred on the high F's, which were F#s for me after transposing. The only way to get that note on a traditional F instrument like mine is to stop the end of the bell: you shove the instrument into your body somewhere. It's a little tricky to be subtle - or avoid knocking your teeth. I can't do it as some do, put it into their torso - it doesn't seal. So I put one foot on a little stool and bow a little to put it just above my knee.

C Kirk
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Re: Taketh Five, verily.

Postby lasaxman » Wed May 18, 2016 2:41 pm

When playing gigs with my trio we would occasionally get requests for Take Five, so I finally decided to add it to our repertoire. The song is fairly simple and easy to play, except for the bridge, which is a little tricky because it is in a high register for alto sax.

OTOH Improvising in odd time signatures has always been difficult for me. It does not come naturally.

What is the name of that hymn (found in Catholic hymnals) in 5/4 time?
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Re: Taketh Five, verily.

Postby inthegobi » Thu May 19, 2016 12:26 pm

David,

I blush to say I asked the keyboardist to improvise, but not for as long as in the most common recording from the DBQ. (Re-listening to it, what an amazing percussion solo.) I have avoided much improvisation in a Mass setting, but I'm interested to hear how it could work.

The hymn is 'Sing of the Lord's Goodness' by Ernest Sands (b.1949); a British Anglican priest.

Here's the tune on the OCP website. It has the same phrasing and almost exactly the same chord progression as the Desmond tune, and one could easily play the sax line as an obbligato over the hymn. The Canterbury Dictionary of Hymnology says it *has been described* as a ripoff of 'Take Five', but obviously it *is*. (Would that have once been a legal issue?)

The lyrics are a tissue of phrases mostly from the Psalms (the last verse is from Ps.150). The first three verses praise the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. As modern hymn lyrics go, it ain't bad.

OCP suggests using it as a processional, but that's daft, and a serious act of uncharity to anyone in the procession who was once in marching band. It's just the right length for an Offertory, however.

Verse 1. Sing of the Lord's goodness Father of all wisdom,
come to him and bless his name.
Mercy he has shown us, his love is forever,
faithful to the end of days.

Refrain: Come, then, all you nations,
sing of your Lord's goodness,
melodies of praise and thanks to God.
Ring out the Lord's glory,
praise him with your music,
worship him and bless his name.


Verse 2. Power he has wielded, honor is his garment
risen from the snares of death.
His word he has spoken, one bread he has broken,
new life he now gives to all.

Verse 3. Courage in our darkness, comfort in our sorrow,
Spirit of our God most high;
solace for the weary, pardon for the sinner,
splendor of the living God.

Verse 4. Praise him with your singing, praise him with the trumpet
praise God with the lute and harp;
praise him with the cymbals, praise him with your dancing,
praise God till the end of days.

- C Kirk
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Re: Taketh Five, verily.

Postby lasaxman » Thu May 19, 2016 8:06 pm

inthegobi wrote:The hymn is 'Sing of the Lord's Goodness' by Ernest Sands (b.1949); a British Anglican priest.

Here's the tune on the OCP website. It has the same phrasing and almost exactly the same chord progression as the Desmond tune, and one could easily play the sax line as an obbligato over the hymn. The Canterbury Dictionary of Hymnology says it *has been described* as a ripoff of 'Take Five', but obviously it *is*. (Would that have once been a legal issue?)

In my opinion (which along with $2 will get you a cup of coffee) it is close but different enough to be legal. However, I was very surprised when a court held Robin Thicke's song "Blurred Lines" to be a ripoff of a Marvin Gaye tune. I thought the similarities were very superficial.

Have you heard the mass that Dave Brubeck composed? It is called To Hope! A Celebration.
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Re: Taketh Five, verily.

Postby inthegobi » Sun May 22, 2016 4:41 pm

lasaxman wrote:Have you heard the mass that Dave Brubeck composed? It is called To Hope! A Celebration.


I just have. Delightful! I'll have to listen again to specific parts. I don't think all parts of it would work for a typical Mass IMHO, but there's nothing wrong with a 'performance' Mass. Bach's B-minor Mass comes to mind as an example of that sort.

There's a great video of a piece of it played by Brubeck in Russia, on You-know-it-tube. People are obviously having a good time.

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