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February 2017 • TedGreene.com Newsletter
Welcome to our February Newsletter!
To start things off this month we wanted to share an excerpt from the Ted Greene Memorial Blog. This one is from our good friend, Nick Stasinos:
Ted’s ears were exceptionally accurate! I would occasionally ask him if he had perfect pitch. He denied having it, but claimed you could train your ears to be acute. I started bringing songs I was transcribing for the major publishers and he would nail a chord or a note I was having trouble identifying. He would hum the note he was trying to ID while playing a section over and over again, saying it was nature’s best slow-down machine.
I decided to turn my focus to Ted’s music and started using my lesson time to have him slowly play through the songs from his Solo Guitar album so I could write them out. I asked him to consider having a book of transcriptions published. At first, he was doubtful, questioning whether there was much demand for it since his LP was long out-of-print. I would periodically bug him about a book on Solo Guitar, as well as to release his album on CD. Well, happy day! His CD was released last November . I went to see him play at Spazio’s Sunday brunch the following month. We shared our thoughts on the mixing and artwork of the CD, but didn’t really receive any affirmation from him about a book until I overheard him say, while autographing his CD for a fan, “My friend is working on that for me!”
I had the pleasure of inviting Ted to see Tommy Emmanuel play at Gary Mandell’s Boulevard Music back in 2000. I used to bring Tommy’s arrangement of the Beatles’ “Michelle” (full of harp-harmonics) to my lessons back in ‘94, so Ted was excited to meet him, too. My daughter and I had a blast hanging out with Ted that night. During the workshop the next day, Tommy brought up Ted’s name as having a major influence on his playing. After playing the stock changes for “Watch What Happens” that lead up to the bridge, he then played Ted’s chord substitutions for the same passage, saying in his thick Aussie accent, “Isn’t that killer! I could take a holiday just playing that! In that small passage is Ted’s heart and soul!” Indeed it is, Tommy! [Go here to view: vbguitar.com/Tommy_Emmanuei_and_Ted_Greene]
- Nick Stasinos
Thanks for those reminiscences, Nick. This story ties in with some recent intensive interest in transcribing more of Ted’s recordings. As you may know, last year we started a new section on our site called “Transcriptions.” Now that we have a central spot for collecting all transcripts of Ted’s work this makes it is easier to find them, compare different versions of the same tunes, and most of all, learn to play them. One of our most avid transcribers, François Leduc has posted a complete transcription book of Ted’s Solo Guitar which includes standard notation, Tab, and “basic” grids chord diagrams (not Ted’s grids with symbols for moving lines). We’re also happy to have Mark Thornbury’s grid transcriptions posted, which he did back in 1977 and reviewed some of them with Ted. And of course, a more transcriptions have come to us, taken from various videos of Ted, and some excerpts from audio lessons. I’m happy to report that this month we’re posting the first transcription from the recording we released last year, “Private Concert at Alec Silverman’s Home, 1975” — “Have You Met Miss Jones?” and it was written up by François. This is wonderful to have and I’m sure you’ll love working through it. We’re hoping other transcribers will do some of the other pieces on that fantastic recording. Also to note is a new transcript of Ted’s “Your Song,” taken from the Joey Backenstoe Wedding recording that we posted last year.
As stated in the transcription section, “Due to the rich harmonies and complexity of Ted’s playing, we understand that there are bound to be errors in these transcriptions...” And we encourage people to share typos or corrections if they discover them in our posted files.
Recently Gareth Rixton has joined up with François and together they are reviewing and revising all of the transcriptions of Ted’s Solo Guitar album…one song at a time! Gareth has a team of guitarists who do transcriptions, and he’s working on getting them to pitch in whenever they can. He’s also rewriting the notation in Sibelius. Having Mark Thornbury’s grids is proving to be especially helpful for determining exact chord forms that Ted used. Maybe one day we’ll even be able to include Ted-style grids in these scores…keep your fingers crossed!
Earlier François had combined all of his scores into a single “Solo Guitar” book. However, because of the many revisions that will be coming in the next several months, and the frequent need to replace/update some of these pages, we’ve decided to post all these songs individually. The book version would be too difficult to maintain with multiple revisions, so that will be deleted. If you’ve already downloaded the book, you might want to delete it (since it’s now has known errors) and then download the individual files. Then, if you like the book format, you may wish to combine these files yourself into a book. We’ll let you all know whenever we update any of the pages. The first major revision is of François’ write-up of Ted’s “Danny Boy.”
Another thing to look forward to is that Damien McGowran is coordinating to have some of Ted’s pieces from “Live at the Seashell Restaurant” video transcribed. That will be a nice treat. Thanks in advance, Damien!
And last but certainly not least, we want to draw your attention to a new YouTube video that Tim Lerch has just made for Ted’s arrangement of “I Cover the Waterfront” which is the new arrangement-of-the-month for February. Tim always does a fantastic job in reviewing Ted’s material, giving tips, alternative fingerings, and insights that help in learning these pieces and provides some understand of what’s going on “behind the curtains” of the music. Be sure to check it out here: YouTube. Tim did this on short notice as a special request from me, and of course he did a bang-up job. Thanks, Tim! (If you guys really like this, please be sure to visit Tim’s site and tell him so! timlerch.com).
Well, that’s all for the fun-filled month of February. Enjoy the new material!
~ Your Friends on the TedGreene.com Team
* I Cover the Waterfront, 1982-12-15. [Here we have Ted’s written arrangement of this classic jazz standard. This file contains new notation with lead sheet and lyrics, combined with Ted’s grid diagrams. We added some blank grids for the turnarounds at measures 15-16 and 31-32 for you to write in your own fills. Also included is Ted’s original handwritten lead sheet from 1973. See Newsletter message above regarding a new YouTube video lesson of Tim Lerch reviewing this arrangement.]
ARTICLES & INTERVIEWS:
* Ted Greene - In Tribute An article about Ted shortly after his passing, written by Oscar Jordan for Music Connection magazine, August-September 2005 issue. Thanks to Oscar Jordan for giving us this copy to post.
* Cadential Bass Formulas, 1975-11-08. [Ted gives us 40 examples of bass lines formulas. He expects us to experiment adding various harmonizations. New notation included.]
* Summary and Bass View of Baroque Harmony, 1978-07-08. [On this chart Ted provides commonly used chords for every possible bass note as relating to a particular key – the key of C and Am is used for this page. A resource for composing and you want to experiment with different harmonizations on a bass note. Typed page provided for easy reading.]
* Big Band Blues - I-IV-V & 3 Statement Form (key of C), 1985-05-18. [Another one of Ted’s One-chord-per-beat blues pieces. This one has all V-2 voicing group chords, as 6, dominant 7 or 9 chords. Notation provided combined with Ted’s original grids.]
* Big Band Blues - 3 Statement Form (key of Bb, middle & top strings), 1985-06-20. [Another page of V-2 chords, here focusing on the middle and top 4 strings. Notation provided combined with Ted’s original grids.]
*Big Band Blues - 3 Statement Form (key of Bb, middle strings), 1985-06-22. [This is almost the exact same voicings as the other page in the key of Bb, but this version utilizes only the middle 4 strings. Previously posted we’ve now condensed the new notation page so it all fits on one page.]
*Big Band Blues # 2 - 3 Statement Form (key of Ab), 1985-06-29. [Previously posted and combined with the other “Big Band Blues #2” in the key of G – we’ve now separated them and condensed the new notation pages so it all fits on one page.]
*Big Band Blues #2 - 3 Statement Form (key of G), 1985-06-29. [Previously posted and combined with the other “Big Band Blues #2” in the key of Ab – we’ve now separated them and condensed the new notation pages so it all fits on one page.]
* Harmonic Vocabulary: Progression Study, 1984-02-28 & 29. [Ted walks us thru some basic diatonic progressions of I-ii and I-iii, I-iii-ii using a variety of voicings and treatments. This is good fundamental info for those new to playing solo guitar. These lessons were previously posted as “Harmonic Vocabulary Progression Study_1 (I-ii)” and “Harmonic Vocabulary Progression Study_2 (I-iii and I-iii-ii).” We’ve combined them, provided an improved scan copy and another copy of the same lesson sheets with additional comments by Ted, and we’ve added a “compilation” version that combines Ted’s grids with standard notation.]
* Mastering Inner String Dominant Chords, 1988-09-24. [In this lesson Ted gives some tips for how to visualize dominant chords (7, 7/6. 9, and 13) on the middle 4 strings. This is another assignment page for the student to fill in the dots…but, we included a translation page and filled it out. Ignore this page if you want to do the work yourself.]
* R537 with R536 Chord Scale Studies, 1986-10-13. [This page is located under the Chord Scales header of the Chord Studies section. Two original pages of scale-wise descending harmonies, with broken-chord treatment for variety. Notation and “filled-in grids” added for clarity. Ignore the notation pages if you want to do the homework without the answers.]
* Summertime, V-1 Comping (Key of Am), 1990-08-08. [Well, it’s wintertime, but I guess we can be dreaming about summer! These comping chords sound wonderful and modern, but you may need to spend some time getting friendly with them because of the long stretches. Most are V-1 type voicing groups, but there’s some others mixed in. Notation and lyrics combined with Ted’s grids provided for easy of reading and seeing how the chords are played with the melody.]
* String Transference Studies (part 1), 1988-08-03. [Ted explains the concept of string transference, gives examples, and homework. Two pages: for transferring bottom 4 strings to the top 4 strings, and also for top 4 to the bottom 4. Translation pages included for easier reading.]
* Night and Day - Soloing Thru the Chromatic Spot, 1990-07-06. [Ted gives us a single-note solo for 8 measures of this classic jazz standard – in two different fingerboard positions. This involves ideas for soloing over the Am7b5–Abm7–Gm7–Fm6 section. New notation combined with Ted’s grids aligned to the lead sheet provided.]
* V-1 and V-2 Major Type Chords on Top 4 Strings, 1985-02-03. [This has been posted in the “Combined Groups” folder of the V-System section. Two original pages. Page 1 is all A root major type chords, and page 2 has examples of Eb, D, Db, and A. Ted organized them according to the top voice: as Root, 9th, 3rd, 5th, 6th, or 7th in the soprano. Good reference page for when you’re looking for something new to spice up one of your chord-melody arrangements.]
* V7-I Progressions from V-2 Forms on Top 4 Strings, 1984-12-02. [This is posted in the V-System section / V-2 folder, under the “Progressions and Other Stuff” header. One page of grid diagrams showing some very interesting resolutions of a dominant 7/6 chord to various major type chords.]
* Have You Met Miss Jones? (from Ted’s “Silverman Concert”) Notation, Grids, Tab - François Leduc.
* Your Song (from “Joey Backenstoe Wedding”) Notation, Grids, Tab - François Leduc.
Ted’s Solo Guitar album, individual files (see Newsletter message above), transcribed by François Leduc with notation, Tab, and Grids:
A Certain Smile
Ol’ Man River
Send in the Clowns
Summertime / It Ain’t Necessarily So
They Can't Take That Away from Me
Watch What Happens
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January 2017 TedGreene.com Newsletter
New Year’s Greetings to all Ted’s Family and Students!
For the January Newsletter last year we took a quick look at what was posted in the previous year. Let’s do that again. Here’s a listing of the different sections in the “Lessons” area and the number of lesson sheets we posted last year. Also, keep in mind that many of these files contain more than one lesson from Ted.
Arrangements: 25; Baroque: 8; Blues: 14; Chord Studies: 57; Comping: 11; Fundamentals: 4; Harmony & Theory: 6; Jazz: 11; “Other”: 6; Single-Note Soloing: 13; The V-System: 36; From Students: 13; Personal/Performances info: 6; Personal/Articles & Interviews: 11; and Discography & Publications: 1.
For the Audio section we added: “An Afternoon with Ted” (from Phil deGruy), “Your Song” (from the JB Wedding), “Ted & Emily Remler Jammin’ ” (from the TG archives), “Private Concert at Alec Silverman’s Home, July 1975,” (from Mark Thornbury) and “Moonglow – comping” (from Nick Stasinos). We also started the new “Transcriptions” area last February, and all of the entries were added in 2016. And of course the new “Trail Guide to Chord Chemistry” by Leon White came out in November.
Whew! That’s a lot of new material – enough to keep us all out of trouble for a long time. Nevertheless, we’re blazing forward in our effort to post as much as we can from Ted’s teachings archives. Hold on to your seat, for in addition to the monthly New Items, we’re also doing “Lesson File Upgrades” to a lot of the pages that were posted in the early years of this site. (Hopefully we can finish that well before the end of 2017.) And last but not least, this year Dan Sindel retired as our “humble webmaster” only to be replaced by Jeffrey D. Brown, who is the original developer of this site and long-time media designer/producer in guitar-related markets. In addition to planning future enhancements to the site, he has expanded our outreach substantially via direct marketing and social media.
Now, we’d like to draw your attention to another new item that has been a long time in the making: a newly notated version of Ted’s “Theme from E.T.” arrangement, complete with new grids. We’ve also posted Ted’s preliminary sketches for the making this arrangement. Plus we’ve uploaded a file of the new notation from the music writing program (Sibelius 6.0), and an mp3 file that’s a playback of the Sibelius file. The audio sounds a bit stiff since it’s a computer-generated rendition, but at least it allows you to get an idea of how the arrangement sounds. Unfortunately, we don’t have a recording of Ted playing this arrangement, but we all know that he would have filled it with great feeling, personality, and beauty…so you’ll have to keep that in mind as you work thru the piece.
After I had been writing up Ted’s arrangements for the site for a couple of years, Barbara Franklin told me that she wanted me to be sure to do a good job on Ted’s “Theme from E.T.” arrangement. She said Ted really poured himself into that arrangement, and that he was very proud (in his humble way!) of the final outcome. She wanted a new write-up to be done, and done well.
Leon White was involved with the history of this arrangement, so we’ll let him tell you about how it got started:
“Back in the day, Professional Music Products (PMP) was contracted to run the Belwin-Mills guitar catalogue. Marty Winkler, head of Belwin-Mills Publishing Corp., would often send us requests for particular guitar things and we’d work on them. One day he called wondering if Ted Greene would be willing to do a solo guitar arrangement for ‘Theme from E.T.’ I thought I knew the answer (‘No’), but I told Marty I’d ask him anyway. To my astonishment Ted said, ‘E.T? Hmmm…let me think about it.’ He was not in a publishing mood at that time so I didn’t expect anything. Out of the blue he called me back and said, ‘Okay, I’ll do it!’ I then worked it out so Ted could work directly with the music engraver that Belwin-Mills used. The result was a multipage sheet music version of Ted’s “Theme from E.T.’ Ted really surprised me in agreeing to do this, and we’re all so glad he did.”
Though it was published back in 1983, copies of it are difficult or impossible to find. On the TedGreene.com site we’ve had Ted’s four handwritten pages posted for several years, but they’re pretty hard to read. If you search the net you can find a Guitar Pro version of it with Tab, although I haven’t checked its accuracy against Ted’s original pages.
This new write-up of Ted’s arrangement began several years ago with the transferring of his handwritten page into Sibelius. (Dr. David Bishop helped me with the initial notation input.) Then came time to add the grid diagrams. Ted’s hastily drawn grids on his original sheets are difficult to read and they don’t include his usual dot, X, square, triangle, and star symbols for moving lines. I think he must have included those diagrams there just as a general indicator for what chord form is to be used and for the location on the guitar neck. In our new version we used Ted’s grids as guides, but created all new diagrams and added the moving note symbols, which necessitated the addition a few more grids. We hope this makes the music easier to follow and understand what Ted intended.
This whole process was a bit overwhelming, and I kept procrastinating finishing the project. In the Fall of 2016 I finally got enough ahead with the monthly New Items so I could focus on getting this job completed. David Bishop then spent time proofreading everything; the corrections were then made, and now at last we have this to offer to you all. We hope you enjoy it.
There were a few things relating to Ted’s teaching archives that Barb said she really wanted to be sure got “out there” for the world. One of them was the posting of all of Ted’s “V-System” pages along with explanations. This “E.T.” arrangement was another one. I believe (hope) that she and Ted would be happy with our presentation. Perhaps one of you will learn it well enough to record and post it on YouTube (in part or in its entirety).
Happy New Year!
~ Your Friends on the TedGreene.com Team
* Theme from E.T., 1982-09-16. [See Newsletter for more details. This is Ted's arrangement of John Williams theme for the film, “E.T. the Extraterrestrial.” Previous posted, we have now added 12 pages of new notation with grids for easy reading. We’ve also included the notation file (Sibelius 6.0) for those who would like to have it as an aid to learning. And we’ve posted an mp3 file that was generated from the Sibelius program so you can get an idea of how it sounds, albeit a rather mechanical rendition – but it at least lets you hear it as a whole, in tempo, and “correctly” executed.]
* Theme from E.T., - Ted’s Original Sketch, 1982. [These are Ted’s preliminary sketches for his arrangement. Dated just a few days before he wrote out his full arrangement.]
* Harmonic Patterns, 1973-10-30. [Ted gives us 54 exercises in 2-part or 3-part harmony for developing better musical hearing, fingerboard dexterity, visualization of the fingerboard, and harmonic knowledge. New notation provided for easy reading.]
* Harmonic Patterns, 1976-03-14 and 1976-04-29. [Ted called this “Type I: “Held-not” sound or Interval “Fill-ins.” The emphasize here is to let the notes ring for the full duration of the written notation. We can really see here how Ted would take an idea and methodically expand it to include many subtle variations. Two original pages accompanied by three pages of new notation.]
* Harmonic Patterns, 1978-09-04 & 05. [Here we have a truckload of exercises with assignments to do even more variations. This page was filed in Ted’s regular teaching materials, but may have been just for his private studies. New notation provided for easier reading.]
* Neo-Baroque Ascending Diatonic Bass Progressions, 1990-09-01. [Ted gives us 5 little etudes with ascending bass progressions. This file replaces one that had been previously posted as “Neo-Baroque_3.” We’ve improved the scan quality, added notation, and included chord names.]
* Neo-Baroque Light Colors-Diatonic Major Key, Upper Register, 1985-02-21. [Ted composed these two pieces demonstrating what he called “light colors” for the upper register of the guitar. They’re wonderful ideas that you could use, in part or whole, in a variety of situations for intros, fills, endings, etc. This file replaces one that had been previously posted as “Neo-Baroque_4.” We’ve improved the scan quality, and added notation.]
* Jazz Blues Comping, 1995-03-29. [Here’s a blues accompaniment page that Ted wrote up during a private lesson. I guess we could have placed it in either the “Jazz”, “Blues” or “Comping” section on this site, but we thought it best suited for the collection of Ted’s “Blues” studies. As extra bonus material, at the bottom of the sheet Ted started to write out a blues in F using “old pick-style rhythm.” Perhaps he left it unfinished as an assignment for the student to follow-thru and complete it. We left that for you to work on, but we’ve added standard notation to the G blues portion.]
* R537 Voicings Chord Scales, 1986-10-12. [Using the voicing of R, 5, 3, 7 Ted shows various chord scales in a few different keys, ascending and descending on the bottom string set and the string set starting from the 5th string. Three original pages combined with three “filled-in” pages for the grids that Ted left blank for the student to complete. In Ted’s “V-System” organization these are the V-5 chord groups. Go here: tedgreene.com/teaching/v system V-5 for more on that voicing group.]
* R536 Voicings from the Bottom String, 1986-10-12. [On this page Ted gives us four examples of harmonized chord scales with 6ths!! Interestingly, he names the chords on the third and sixth degrees as “minor b6.” Keys: F, Ab, and E. As with the R537 voicings, these belong to the V-5 voicing group.]
* Cherokee (middle 4 and Bottom 4 strings), 1984-02-25. [If you worked through the recently posted comping page for “Cherokee,” this one will sound very familiar – the difference being that this version is in the key of Ab and utilizes the middle and lower set of strings. The other version is in the key of Bb and uses the top 4 strings only. The voicings are almost identical. Ted indicated that this piece could be used for comping or as a chord solo. Notation with lead sheet combined with Ted’s grids provided.]
HARMONY & THEORY:
* Cadences, circa 1973. [Ted explains what a cadence is, various types of cadences, gives multiple examples, and tells us a thing or two about music along the way. Good fundamental info. Transcription pages included.]
* Most Common Harmonic Tendencies in Jazz and Related Music, 1977-10-27 & 1979-09-14. [Using Roman numerals Ted lists every degree of a “home major key” and then shows the various common harmonic tendencies of that chord toward other chords as relating to the key. Transcription page provided for easy reading.]
* Jazz Blues (single-note solo), 1986-08-31. [This could go in either the jazz, blues, or SNS section, but we thought it was better suited for the “Jazz” section. New notation page included.]
* Chord Forms for Visualizing Scales, Arpeggios, and Runs, 1978-07-17 [A collection of chord grids meant to be used as skeletal outlines for visualizing scales, arpeggios. Three pages.]
* Melodic Patterns, Key of C, 1974-02-19. [This page is almost identical to another page Ted wrote up. It seems that in the early 1970’s he was constantly revising and updating his lesson sheets, so we sometimes find some redundancy…which never hurts the learning process. New notation included.]
* V-2 7b9, Learning to Work with 7b9’s in Musical Passages, Top 4 Strings, 1988-01-13 [Ted gives us 5 examples of resolutions of dom7b9 to major chords (V-I). Translation page included for easy reading.]
* V7-I, V7-I Progressions with Visually Troublesome V-2 7b9’s, 1984-03-28. [On this page Ted shows how diminished 7 chord forms can function as rootless dom.7b9 chords. He points out the chord tones to be used as “anchors” to help visualize the chord name. (In example #5 he stretches it out a bit and takes it somewhere else.)]
* Summertime / It Ain’t Necessarily So (from “Solo Guitar”) Grids, Mark Thornbury.
[Mark wrote: I don’t really have any comments about this piece, although you can see I sort of skipped the analysis of the descending diminished triads with auxiliary soprano melodies on top in the next to last line. I wish I had asked Ted about that, for it sure is a cool ending!]
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