You can learn how to play Baby Won’t You please Come Home by Bessie Smith!
Baby Won’t You Please Come Home is a jazz/blues song, written by Clarence Williams.
Sung by Bessie Smith, Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald, it has earned the stripes to be referred to as a jazz standard.
As you learn Baby Won’t You Please Come Home, play the chord progression whilst simultaneously singing the number of each chord as they pass by.
You must make this switch from thinking of chords as names to roman numerals in order to successfully play jazz solos.
The chord progression is classic jazz/blues territory with its I7 – VIx – IIm7 – V7, for the main part, and two II – V – I progressions for the turnaround.
Translated to the key of D, the sections read:
| D7 | B7 | Em7 | A7 | repeat
| G7 G#dim7 | A7 B7 | Em7 A7 |
| D7 B7 | Em7 A7 | D7 A7 |
These two simple chord progressions set a great testing ground to practice your modal scales and arpeggios.
We do plenty of that in the advanced acoustic guitar course.
Soloing with chord numbers
As you have played the progressions and thought of what number they all have, simply keep this in mind as you solo.
In order to use modes and arpeggios for soloing over this piece, you need to use the new chord = new scale/arpeggio method.
Should the chord be an Em7, then you think II which means E Dorian or an Em7 arpeggio. The Conspirian scale would also work.
For the A7, which is chord V you could use a Major Pentatonic, Mixolydian or a Dom7 arpeggio.
It is absolutely imperative that you can do this to any chord of the progression, anywhere on the neck. From here, the next step will be to arpeggio substitute. By doing so you will create a bigger sound.
For the A7 you could play a C#m7b5 arpeggio and automatically hit some more wacky notes.
You could even think of this chord as a place where you could extend to Dom7b9. Use the upper part of that and you’ll find a Gdim7 arpeggio. A diminished arpeggio can be moved around in minor thirds, giving you the opportunity to move the same idea up or down the fret board in minor thirds.
The rabbit hole goes seemingly deep, but really, it comes down to knowing the basics really well in all positions.
Baby Won’t You Please Come Home – Guitar Lessons
Baby Won’t You Please Come Home by Clarence Williams will soon be available as eight step by step guitar lessons.
Until then, there’s complete TAB for what I play in the video available.
Baby Won’t You Please Come Home – Lyrics
Baby won’t you please come home, ’cause your mama’s all alone.
I have cried in vain, never no more to call your name.
When you left you broke my heart,
’cause I never thought we’d part.
Bessie Smith – Biography
Bessie Smith was an American blues singer who was nicknamed The Queen Of Blues and later upgraded to Empress.
Smith is often regarded as one of the greatest singers of her era (the 20s and 30s) and along with Louis Armstrong, a major influence on subsequent jazz vocalists.
Go to Bessie Smith – Biography.
Clarence Williams – Biography
Clarence Williams was an American jazz pianist, composer, promoter, vocalist, theatrical producer, and publisher.
Touring and recording with some of the most legendary blues artists of his time, Clarence Williams spent time with W.C Hardy, Bessie Smith, and Louis Armstrong.
Ella Fitzgerald – Biography
Ella Fitzgerald released 61 studio albums and 25 live albums between 1936 and 1989. Crowned the First Lady Of Song, she is recognized for performing and recording most of the Great American Songbook.
Before this, she pioneered scat-singing in the 40s as a devoted Bebop singer.
Go to Ella Fitzgerald – Biography.
Frank Sinatra – Biography
Frank’s legacy might best be summed up by Stephen Holden who wrote for the 1983 Rolling Stone Record Guide:
“Frank Sinatra’s voice is pop music history. Like Presley and Dylan – Sinatra will last indefinitely. He virtually invented modern pop song phrasing.”
Go to Frank Sinatra – Biography.