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Cory Henry transcriptions & analysis?


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I keep being fascinated by Cory Henry's keyboard playing, particularly on organ. I'd like to "ingest" some of his ideas into my own playing but I'm kind of puzzled on where to start. I already have the Lingus transcription (in multiple versions) and have learned the first half, but that one is very dense and "next level".

 

Did some of y'all do transcriptions of his work? Some good pointers on where to start? Maybe some analysis as well? I've attended some of the Snarky Puppy online classes but Cory didn't seem like the educator type.

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Check out some of the Gospel Keyboard Youtube channels they have done videos breaking down some of Cory's work. There's even a Youtube of Cory at four years old playing in church so a lot of gospel influence in how he thinks about playing. Also checkout YouTube's and channel of Nick Semrad, he is the second keyboardist in many of Cory's bands. There is a cool interview with Cory and Nick together talking about their backgrounds.

 

There's a Cory video he put up in the last day or two talking about past gigs with one amazing video. Cory's drummer had given Cory advance notice he couldn't make a gig. Cory said fine I'll get a sub and gig comes and Cory forget to get a sub. So Cory is playing drums on the gig the video is a tune where

Cory had a Moog solo. Cory is on the drums playing with one hand, and the Moog is on a stand by the floor tom and Cory is soloing on the Moog and drumming at the same time. Totally insane.

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Only 23 views of this Cory Henry video?

 

[video:youtube]

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NI: Komplete 14 | VPS: Avenger | Cherry: GX80 | G-Force: OB-E | Korg: Triton, MS-20

 

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Yamaha: Motif XS8, Motif ES8, Motif8, KX-88, TX7 | ASM: Hydrasynth Deluxe| Roland: RD-2000, D50, MKS-20| Korg: Kronos 88, T3, MS-20

Oberheim: OB8, OBXa, Modular 8 Voice | Rhodes: Dyno-My-Piano| Crumar: T2

 

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Not sure where or how I found the link to the version with zero views.... This link has 350k views...

 

Using:

Yamaha: Montage M8x| Spectrasonics: Omnisphere, Keyscape | uhe: Diva, Hive2, Zebra2| Roland: Cloud Pro | Arturia: V Collection

NI: Komplete 14 | VPS: Avenger | Cherry: GX80 | G-Force: OB-E | Korg: Triton, MS-20

 

Sold/Traded:

Yamaha: Motif XS8, Motif ES8, Motif8, KX-88, TX7 | ASM: Hydrasynth Deluxe| Roland: RD-2000, D50, MKS-20| Korg: Kronos 88, T3, MS-20

Oberheim: OB8, OBXa, Modular 8 Voice | Rhodes: Dyno-My-Piano| Crumar: T2

 

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He's an ear player.
Yeah, all the time I've spent trying to Learn About Music gets really frustrated when I investigate Cory's playing and every analyst/transcriber basically comes to the conclusion "yeah, he's improvising the entire harmony, and there's no real rhyme or reason to what he's doing other other than that it sounds cool and he knows it." When I throw down arbitrary quartal clusters and play lines over them, it doesn't sound like THAT.

Samuel B. Lupowitz

Musician. Songwriter. Food Enthusiast. Bad Pun Aficionado.

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He's an ear player.
Yeah, all the time I've spent trying to Learn About Music gets really frustrated when I investigate Cory's playing and every analyst/transcriber basically comes to the conclusion "yeah, he's improvising the entire harmony, and there's no real rhyme or reason to what he's doing other other than that it sounds cool and he knows it." When I throw down arbitrary quartal clusters and play lines over them, it doesn't sound like THAT.

 

 

If you listen to the gospel guys talk about playing there have a approach, but some of their terminology is different but there is a rhyme and reason. The main thing the do have over other is they have great ears and taught in the old school like Jazz player listen and learn. You want to play spend your time playing and watching your elders. Ask a question and someone will play you an answer so ears better be good.

 

When working at and attending music schools what was sad is seeing what would happen to many of these people when they come to school. They could play circles around the other students had the ears to sit in with teacher and play anything. But because they are ear trained they ended up in the low level theory and other classes. The other traditionally trained students have a good grasp of basic theory and reading so they are the hot shots in those classes. Eventually frustration builds with the gospel musicians knowing they can play circles around everyone but have difficulty in the theory and such since they never had any traditional training. They are also getting calls to go on the road backing up name artists playing with other ear trained musicians and don't see the value of studying theory and sightreading so they quit. It sad to see that with so much ability that if they did stay and learn theory and reading they'd be busy the rest of their lives.

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I've read Cory interviews where he talks about how he studied recordings of Art Tatum, Oscar Peterson, and Herbie Hancock as a teenager. So in his playing there's a foundation built on the masters. There's also the influence of playing in church as a youngster. I've heard people with this experience talk about how the purpose of music in the gospel church is to move people, rather than impress them: a musician only succeeds when they move people. These experiences and influences (and of course others) plus a ton of hard work is what I hear when I listen to Cory.

 

To the OP's desire to "ingest" some of Cory's own playing into his own I think Eric's advice is spot on. When doing so look for what it is about what Cory played that pulled you toward it. Usually there's some concept at play that you can then take and create your own stuff around. If you find something that you love and can't come up with an explanation as to why it sounds so good, post it and see if others can help with some ideas.

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