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Blown changes, Nord Piano 2 on uptempo stuff....


Dave Ferris

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So a couple of totally random, rambling thoughts..fwiw.

 

Played a drummer-less trio (piano/bass/guitar) gig backing a vocalist this past Friday. She has a book we usually play tunes out of but we also call things on the spot. Someone requested "Unforgettable" (you could hear the groans in the trio :D ) for her to sing. Personally I hate the f..ing tune having done for so many years on wedding/casuals , but it's always a crowd favorite in these type of situations...so there you go.

 

I can honestly say I hadn't played it in a few years , since I'm kinda outta the casual biz , and most singers don't do it that I work with..thank God.

 

She had never sung it and we were trying to figure out a key. I did remember the default casual key was F ...like with the Nat/Natalie version. She said it seemed a bit high, so we said ok...Eb. I didn't run the changes quickly/silently,before we started, figuring ..oh yeah I'll remember this pos.

 

So we get to bar 5 where harmonically, things start changing up. I can't recall for sure what I did..but it de-railed the train off the tracks. :laugh:

 

I might have went to a Cm7 ..thinking the next key center was Bb..when it was really Ab. The correct chord at bar 5 would be a DbMaj7 or Bbm7 which functions as the IV or II chord of Ab , then goes to the Gb7 for a bar ...then to the root movement of :

AbMaj7 Db7(G7) | Cm7 F7 | Fm7/Bb | % | % | % :|| ...then back to the top.

 

and then the second ending really got out there. :crazy: It ends in the different key of Ab and then modulates back to Eb to go back to the top. But it was so screwed up (totally my fault :blush: ) that we just kinda went into a dissolve mode and put the damn thing out of its misery... :laugh: And would you believe it...the woman who requested it, came up and put a twenty in the jar and said, "I loved your rendition"....wow ! :cry:

 

Of course first thing I did when I got home late was open up the Steinway and review those changes. I felt bad I screwed it up. But it had been so long since I'd played it, plus it was towards the end of the night when everyone was mentally not as sharp. But it was certainly a case for use it/play it or lose it. Also coming up on age 61, my memory recall isn't what it used to be. ;)

 

So also during the course of the evening a trumpet player/vocalist gets up to sit in, and calls "Night & Day" at about 144 = half note. So a pretty screaming tempo for that particular song. He scatted, very well, over about 3 choruses and then gave it to me. I think I did 2 choruses on it. But in trying build and really open up on the second chorus - I really felt handcuffed with the Nord action not being responsive enough. No one noticed, I'm sure , but me . But I got that feeling, that I don't like to get with electronic keyboards - jeez that sounds nothing like what I can do on (even a bad) acoustic. ;)

 

I dig the Nord overall for most stuff - ballads, latin, ECM loose straight eighthy type stuff, anything that really has a deep groove from 60 - 100 for the half note. And even medium up swing around 120 = half. But when it gets in that "other" area ...man I'm cursing the thing...and thinking I should be on a CP4. ;)

https://soundcloud.com/dave-ferris

 

NY Steinway D

Yamaha AvantGrand N3X, P-515

 

 

 

 

 

 

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From Yamaha's CP4 Stage website:

 

Yamaha's innovative GH3 keyboard has three sensors: in addition to two sensors to detect keystroke strength, it includes Yamahas original Damper Sensor. This enables you to use advanced techniques such as playing the same note repeatedly with perfect articulation, previously only possible on a grand piano, which blends sounds without the use of the damper pedal. You also enjoy the keyboard touch of a grand piano, including keys with weight gradations heavy in the lower end and lighter in the higher end. The NW (Natural Wood) keyboard, with the same structure as the GH3 keyboard, and synthetic ivory keytops also provide the feel of a grand piano, even the fingertip sensations.

 

In a recent thread, I wrote about the Kawai controller having 3 sensors and thought the new Kurzweil boards should offer it too.

 

 

On their site, http://www.kawaivpc.com/, Kawai states this:

 

What are the benefits of a 3-sensor keyboard action over a 2-sensor keyboard action?

 

The VPC1's 3-sensor action allows improved responsiveness, especially when playing the same note rapidly. Moreover, triple-sensor key detection allows the same note to be re-triggered without the sound of the previously played note being cut-off, enabling greater expressiveness and control when playing trills. Finally, the third sensor also measures the key-release velocity, allowing the software piano (or hardware tone generator) to produce notes with different tonal characteristics ranging from staccato to legato playing.

 

Casio's PX-5S has "Tri sensors".

 

Why don't Nord keyboards have this too?

 

Tom

 

"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent." - Victor Hugo
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Oops - happens. 20 dollars in the tips jar though. Can't have been a total car crash - better to think of it as a novel arrangement with an unusual reharmonization.

 

I thought you'd bought the CP4. I'm clearly not paying enough attention.

I'm the piano player "off of" Borrowed Books.
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Certain types of music and/or gig situations will expose the limitations of electronic KBs.

 

The trick is to become familiar enough with the KB(s) in order to overcome its shortcomings.

 

Unfortunately, practicing those pos, sos, lame a$$ tunes that paying customers want to hear is the only way to avoid blown changes. :laugh:

 

BTW, it probably wouldn't hurt to practice those tunes on the Nord Piano 2 or CP4 instead of the Steinway. :D:cool:

PD

 

"The greatest thing you'll ever learn, is just to love and be loved in return."--E. Ahbez "Nature Boy"

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LOL - enjoyed the story nevertheless...makes me feel like I'm not alone. But I'm lazy, I always use my iRealB app with vocalists. Then I don't care what key they choose.

Hamburg Steinway O, Crumar Mojo, Nord Electro 4 HP 73, EV ZXA1

 

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Trio with piano,bass and tenor sax. The club owner wanted us to play"Battle Hymn of the Republic" ala Herbie Mann. The sax played starts playing "Dixie". We just go with it and finish the wrong tune. The owner says she has never heard a better rendition of Battle Hymn. Tips us an extra $100.00.
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But I got that feeling, that I don't like to get with electronic keyboards - jeez that sounds nothing like what I can do on (even a bad) acoustic. ;)

 

I dig the Nord overall for most stuff - ballads, latin, ECM loose straight eighthy type stuff, anything that really has a deep groove from 60 - 100 for the half note. And even medium up swing around 120 = half. But when it gets in that "other" area ...man I'm cursing the thing...and thinking I should be on a CP4. ;)

 

I know that feeling very well. Maxed out, the piano sound and keyboard are giving you NOTHING back inspiration wise. I am happy to say it's not a common occurence with the CP4. Rather the thing just invites you to play and play.

Kawai C-60 Grand Piano : Hammond A-100 : Hammond SK2 : Yamaha CP4 : Yamaha Montage 7 : Moog Sub 37

 

My latest album: Funky organ, huge horn section

https://bobbycressey.bandcamp.com/album/cali-native

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Dave And Bobby

CP4 is better for uptempo than Nord: And awkward bulk aside, how does CP4 compare regarding 300+ quarter note with the CP5? The CP5 I have yet to learn how to program, nor have a carrying case for? I played it Sunday for a Car show in La Jolla. Band said it was good, but I think a lot of adjustments to my touch, and sample options, and CP5 eq, and amp, are needed. I am used to old Kurzweil still.

Any hints appreciated, Dave! My hands are not up for heavy action, so I turned it to Soft action in Utility, is that correct approach?

And just for contrast.. there is a very competent jaz pianist with a lot of speed who likes the Nord you have

You don't have ideas, ideas have you

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are. "One mans food is another mans poison". I defend your right to speak hate. Tolerance to a point, not agreement

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is it cause Nord buys their actions from Fatar?

Yes.

 

I visited Fatar's Website and didn't see any digital piano keyboards with three sensors.

 

What are they waiting for ?

The new Numa Stage and Numa Concert models have 3-sensor Fatar keyboards, so they have started to make them.

 

That said, it is not a panacea. The advantage of the third sensor is that it allows you to re-trigger a note without having to lift your finger as high. It assists in rapid trills, and in pianissimo same-note repetitions. I don't think there are any other advantages.

Maybe this is the best place for a shameless plug! Our now not-so-new new video at https://youtu.be/3ZRC3b4p4EI is a 40 minute adaptation of T. S. Eliot's "Prufrock" - check it out! And hopefully I'll have something new here this year. ;-)

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Dave, your story reminds me of a couple of experiences I've had.

Years ago I was in a 50s/60's cover band. The singer/band leader/guitarist played everything down a half step after I'd been in the band a couple of years, so rather than relearn everything I just changed my keyboard as well. One night, a friend of the guy paying us wanted to sit in on harmonica. After one tune, he asked me what key we would be in for the next tune, specially chosen for him to blow over. I completely forgot about the transpositioning, and gave him the key we used to play in.

Now, he could have done a couple of things when he realized he was playing in Bb and the band was in A - stopped playing, used his ears and grabbed another harmonica, asked me what was going on...but what he did was, just kept playing. Man, it was awful! Afterwards he was pretty PO'd, like I did it to make him look bad.

I'll save the other story. I was asked to sit in with an actual Hammond player's jazz band. Playing his organ. It wasn't pretty!

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Funny, Dave.

 

That particular tune is non-intuitive, to say the least. What key should it be called in? The familiar Nat/Natalie vesion starts in F, ends in Bb (and the solo section is in Db). I have to admit that after reading your post, I jumped on the keys and tried it in Eb. Had to think a bit. In your situation, having not thought about it for a while, I might have just used the xpose function on the DP and not told anyone....

 

Once when I was very green, a singer called Lush Life in A. I was naive enough to think I could do it. I was wrong, I didn't even really know it in Db, but the singer didn't really know it (in any key!) either, so luckily it was a little unclear as to who was the culprit.

 

For years, "The Christmas Song" would bite me every season the first time it was called, 'till finally I shedded it enough to grok the structure. I still remember the personal satisfaction from when it was called in an unusual key the first time of the year and I nailed it.

 

Transposing separates the pros from the greenies. We had to do it without a button. I teach all my students to learn a new tune in at least three keys.

 

Bill Spencer

 

 

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I did remember the default casual key was F ...like with the Nat/Natalie version. She said it seemed a bit high, so we said ok...Eb. I didn't run the changes quickly/silently,before we started, figuring ..oh yeah I'll remember this pos.

 

So we get to bar 5 where harmonically, things start changing up. I can't recall for sure what I did..but it de-railed the train off the tracks. :laugh:

 

I might have went to a Cm7 ..thinking the next key center was Bb..when it was really Ab.

 

I didn't think about this when I posted but my recall is better then I thought. Going to that Cm7 or EbMa7 was the right chord - in the key I was most used to playing it in - the original key of F. ;)

 

I just didn't have the mental sharpness (at that juncture of the evening) to transpose on the spot that whole harmonic sequence. And to remember that the IV chord(in 3 flats), Ab Maj7 , became the new key center. For some reason my mind was saying the V chord Bb Maj 7 was the new key - which, again, it would have been in the original key of F.

 

Bill- yes the original key, at least on gigs in LA was F. And unless someone had a chart, it was rarely done "like the record" with that modulation to the solo section in Db. The solo was always played in F through the entire first ending, then the vocals came back in again , in F, for the 2nd ending going out.

 

Yes regarding the Xmas Song - that tricky 1st ending is the thing that trips everyone up on first play usually.

 

Lush Life in A ?! If someone pulled that here without a chart, they'd risk the piano player packing up and going home. :laugh:

 

And I don't even know if the Nord has a transpose button. I guess it does , but I don't know where to look for it. But I've never used that feature on a keyboard...I'd be afarid I'd forget to reset it ...in fact I know I'd forget. :laugh:

 

You know I don't even own an iPad or phone so .....

 

 

CP4 is better for uptempo than Nord: And awkward bulk aside, how does CP4 compare regarding 300+ quarter note with the CP5? The CP5 I have yet to learn how to program, nor have a carrying case for? I played it Sunday for a Car show in La Jolla. Band said it was good, but I think a lot of adjustments to my touch, and sample options, and CP5 eq, and amp, are needed. I am used to old Kurzweil still.

Any hints appreciated, Dave! My hands are not up for heavy action, so I turned it to Soft action in Utility, is that correct approach?

And just for contrast.. there is a very competent jaz pianist with a lot of speed who likes the Nord you have

 

I don't own the CP4..yet. But yes I could tell in the few times I've played it that faster tempos would be easier and more fluent.

 

Regarding the CP5 - I've lost a lot of my knowledge after 2 years not having it on how to get around on it...certainly a verbal description. But I do recall futzing with the tone, hammer hardness and other features a lot. In the end though I'd compare with the original and always default back to it...so there you go.

 

As far as the touch setting - sorry I can't help you there. Again the default was OK for me.

 

And I have no doubt that someone, somewhere, who is a good player, can get around on it better then me at fast tempos. But for the way I play and my technique is set up - once again the Yamaha works better for me.

 

https://soundcloud.com/dave-ferris

 

NY Steinway D

Yamaha AvantGrand N3X, P-515

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I have played Unforgettable with Eb the starting chord ( I think that supposedly puts it in Bb major ) AND I believe I once played the same mistaken chord, that you played! However, I genuinely appreciate that song, the craftsmanship to write it , the fantastic arrangement written for Nat King Cole. The string writing is excellent. I still have not learned the ending, as on the original recording.

You don't have ideas, ideas have you

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are. "One mans food is another mans poison". I defend your right to speak hate. Tolerance to a point, not agreement

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is it cause Nord buys their actions from Fatar?

Yes.

 

I visited Fatar's Website and didn't see any digital piano keyboards with three sensors.

 

What are they waiting for ?

The new Numa Stage and Numa Concert models have 3-sensor Fatar keyboards, so they have started to make them.

 

That said, it is not a panacea. The advantage of the third sensor is that it allows you to re-trigger a note without having to lift your finger as high. It assists in rapid trills, and in pianissimo same-note repetitions. I don't think there are any other advantages.

 

Fatar needs to update their website.

 

I am aware of what the 3-sensor design does for the player.

 

Even if there are no other advantages whatsoever, for many players, this is important.

 

If the 3-sensor design assists in rapid trills, and in pianissimo same-note repetitions, then, by Dave's submission below, I believe this is exactly the problem that needs addressing.

 

 

But in trying build and really open up on the second chorus - I really felt handcuffed with the Nord action not being responsive enough. No one noticed, I'm sure , but me . But I got that feeling, that I don't like to get with electronic keyboards - jeez that sounds nothing like what I can do on (even a bad) acoustic. ;)

 

I dig the Nord overall for most stuff - ballads, latin, ECM loose straight eighthy type stuff, anything that really has a deep groove from 60 - 100 for the half note. And even medium up swing around 120 = half. But when it gets in that "other" area ...man I'm cursing the thing...and thinking I should be on a CP4. ;)

 

So I return to the question I posted in a previous thread:

 

Why doesn't Kurzweil offer this in their brand new top-of-the-line keyboards, the Forte ($3,995) and the Artis ($2,195) while the Casio PX-5S ($999.99) and NUMA Stage ($1,299.95) do?

 

Hopefully, Nord will include this in their next models.

 

Tom

 

"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent." - Victor Hugo
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I have 3 fakebooks that start it on Gmaj7:

 

Chuck Sher's The New Real Book Vol II

Hal Leanord's The Real Book Vol. 3

Jamey Abersold Vol. 58 "Unforgettable Standards"

 

 

The Abersold version is kind of interesting the way it shows bars 3 and 4:

| Gmaj7 | Gmaj7 | C#-7 | F#7 |

 

The other two books show the usual:

| Gmaj7 | Gmaj7 | Bbdim7 | Bbdim7 |

Harry Likas was the Technical Editor of Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book" and also helped develop "The Jazz Piano Book." Harry spends his time teaching jazz piano online and playing solo piano gigs.

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Agreed re sluggish keyboard on NS2. Good for general use.

I'm keeping mine. But I am getting a CP4 + Hammond XK1C as a better all around playing rig.

 

Hammond C3, Leslie 122, Steinway B, Wurlitzer 200A, Rhodes 73,

D6 Clav

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Yes Unforgettable has always started on G major ( original sheet music ) . The question for me was a theory question, what key is it in, C major or G major? The reason Dave and I both made the identical mistake is lack of clarity about the bi tonality.. a fifth apart G and C

The only remaining question: which is the key? Or is it both? -)

You don't have ideas, ideas have you

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are. "One mans food is another mans poison". I defend your right to speak hate. Tolerance to a point, not agreement

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They use a key signature for G, but it ends on C and in my opinion the songs harmonic structure acts like it's in C.

 

By the way it's ranked at #777 of the top 1000 standards on the jazz standards website. http://www.jazzstandards.com/compositions/index.htm

 

TOP TEN:

1930 1 Body and Soul

1939 2 All the Things You Are

1935 3 Summertime

1944 4 'Round Midnight

1935 5 I Can't Get Started (with You)

1937 6 My Funny Valentine

1942 7 Lover Man (Oh, Where Can You Be)

1930 8 What Is This Thing Called Love?

1933 9 Yesterdays

1946 10 Stella by Starlight

Harry Likas was the Technical Editor of Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book" and also helped develop "The Jazz Piano Book." Harry spends his time teaching jazz piano online and playing solo piano gigs.

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Yes the *original* key (published sheet music) was written in G. Funny how a certain *version* can become known as the original.

 

Yes the b5/tritone thing is played in place of the Diminished chord, although in my experience , I've found more by East Coast guys and straight jazz guys. I'm a card carrying member of that latter club...but on casuals, I put on a different hat to blend in. ;)

 

On general casuals in LA (being as white/un-hip as many of them are) - if you played that b5 sub, they'd look at you like you were from Neptune or something. :crazy:

 

I'd put in my little reharms here and there ..but I'd judiciously choose my spots. Try as I might to fit in to that whole scene though - my rep as a Jazz UFO is pretty much cemented in older LA casual lore. :laugh:

https://soundcloud.com/dave-ferris

 

NY Steinway D

Yamaha AvantGrand N3X, P-515

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Agreed re sluggish keyboard on NS2. Good for general use.

I'm keeping mine. But I am getting a CP4 + Hammond XK1C as a better all around playing rig.

 

Good call for two keyboard thing Bill. If I were to get back into that particular ballgame - I'd go with the CP4 & either a NS2 76 or Kronos 73. :cool:

https://soundcloud.com/dave-ferris

 

NY Steinway D

Yamaha AvantGrand N3X, P-515

 

 

 

 

 

 

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On general casuals in LA (being as white/un-hip as many of them are) - if you palyed that b5 sub, they'd look at you like you were from Neptune or something. :crazy:

 

LOL. But when you did a casual at my house I was EXPECTING those heavy duty reharms and you didn't do it. It would have been welcome to me. (who cares about my guests...)

Hamburg Steinway O, Crumar Mojo, Nord Electro 4 HP 73, EV ZXA1

 

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