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Help with re-harm

Phil W

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OK, a humble bassplayer here. I'm learning about harmony so I did a quick reharm of Jingle Bells just for fun and as a learning exercise, it's not anything I would play live. I actually did it with the bass and a looper to generate the chords rather than on keyboard but I know you guys really know the theory stuff so if anybosy has any suggestions or comments on the reharm - even to slag it off - I'm a beginner in terms of reharmonisation (I'm not proud).


You know the melody - here are my changes (al ittle obscure on prurose at times as I wanted to push the envelope rather than do something really useful as an end product.



Verse Progression:


:||FM7 | Em7(no5)| Eb7#11 |BbM7/D | Gm7 | C7 | F#7 | FM7 ||:


Chorus Progression


|| FM7 |Em7b5-A7| Dm7-G7| C7-F#7|

| Bmaj7 |Em7b5-A7|Dm7-Db7| C7 |


| FM7 |Em7b5-A7| Dm7-G7| C7-F7 |

|Bbmaj7|Em7b5-A7| Dm7-G7| F#M7 ||


Bit crazy but it's fun!


I'm still not sure about the second one on the verse - I wrote E sus but Em7 with no fifth sounds better - I'm playing D and G with C in the melody and D in the bass. Any ideas?


I practised walking the changes and soloing over them, referencing the melody. I tried to record all this using the looper (playing the chords up the neck) but unfortunately I can't squeeze the 32 bar form into the 20 odd seconds allowed by the looper - except at some crazy bebop tempo (soon maybe if I practise).

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It's hard to see what your intentions are by just looking at chord symbols. Can you post an mp3 or a pdf of it? I did one a few days ago of deck the halls in a similar thread for a member. It's a few pages back by now, but you can look at it and see what I did. Same kind of thing as jingle bells. Simple major scale reharm. nothing earth shattering, but it's alway cool to see someone elses take on anything.
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Jazzwee, I've edited the original post to add the barlines. I guess the spacing was not obvious and, though I'd struggled to find the bar sign on my computer keyboard, I should have used the character map or something - anyway, fixed now.


Linwood, I could score it out and might do that sometime. I'll try to record an mp3, my keyboard skils might not be up to it but I could loop a bassline, chords and melody - even a solo maybe.

I'm only using a couple of notes for each chord (plus the bass and melody) - mostly guide tones except for the notated #11. One of the F#7 chords has the b9 in the melody which sounds interesting.


Linwood, my apologies for not posting this on that earlier thread, I did see it.

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This is a warning!

The following clip features my abysmal editing and clumsy playing of the above harmony idea through a very lo-fi recording. But the chord seem to work!




The whole 32 bars was too long to loop (I had to ply the whole thing on bass as my keyboard skills are too slow yet) and I don't have a device to play into my computer so I looped each 16 bars (with bass, chords and melody courtesy of my four string) then hamfistedly edited the verse and chorus together to give you an idea of what the chord sequence would sound like.


In the end, I used more of a two feel than a walking bass but mostly because a walking bass plus 2 other bass parts tends to muddy up the sound spectrum.

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I can see what you're doing now. OK....on your second chord, you're calling it a Em7(no5). I'd think of it like an E(#)9b13.

What you've got is fine. The same kind of idea would be to go like:


FM7/E(#)9b13/Eb13/D11 Ab13#11/ Gm11.....etc.



shucks...I left out your #11 on the Eb...put it in there!! Eb13#11


If I was compin with a bass player ...maybe I'd comp like this http://www.bellmusicproductions.com/clientdownloads/phil.pdf

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Cool. I thought I'd throw those voiceings at ya to try. Two notes in your left hand 3 in your right. 1st chord in the last bar, 3 in the left/3 in the right. Just for grins. No roots.....you're playing bass!

Posting pdf's......is it a drag for dial up guys to see or for the page to draw? I don't know how to make them smaller. Even though I'm only using 4 bars, it's a full page. Maybe I should look into that scorch thing. I seen Dave use it and his stuff always looks so clean on the net.

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Linwood, I loved those voicings. I am going to play around on the keyboard or piano more and more, I think. I guess the voicings are coming out of a Bill Evans (and others) influenced approach.


I'm wondering if there's any musical application from that kind of approach (fourths, third etc.) that I could somehow apply to my bass soloing but I can't think of a way except to play arpeggios like that or play the odd pattern in fourths.

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Yea, get to know the scales that work with these type of chords. Scales with -2 or 2+ or 4+ or -6,all the above, etc. Also, look at what your right hand is spelling out. Triads. Arp those upper tones or use 'em to lead to other chord tones. All kinds of things to think about and look for.
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