You Can Learn Guitar Forums Guru Challenge Playing (and "singing") As at My Wedding

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  • #24540
    Adam
    Participant

    All,

    At Dan’s suggestion, I’m posting a request for help. I’m getting married in two months, and I’ve been obsessed with the idea that it would be cool to play “As” by Stevie Wonder.

    I have long been an intermediate guitar player. On a good day, I would not embarrass myself for 2-3 songs at a coffee shop open mike. Over the years, I’ve had a succession of solid guitar teachers, but none have been conventional, so I lack some of the building blocks that others get right away. That’s why I signed up recently for Spytunes – and also because I wanted to learn Dan’s killer version of “I Wish.”

    I have some local professional musician friends who are going to help me figure this out, and provide some backing on the day in question. They’ll also hook me up with a guitar/vocal teacher who has a sense of adventure. But, I can always use additional ideas, and this is where I hope you’ll come in!

    I’m posting a couple of videos covering the song. The first has lovely, polished playing – but seems a bit abstracted from the earthy, soulful groove of the original. The second is a bit wilder, almost a different song instrumentally, but quite interesting. I’d be lucky and grateful to play a pale imitation of either of these. If Dan doesn’t mind, I’ll also post a cover of “I Wish”. This cover translates very nicely into the acoustic guitar context the playful funkiness of the original. It’s good inspiration here.

    I play acoustic and electric. This week, I’m sounding better on the electric, but my guess is that acoustic is the way to go here. I’ll have a backing duo consisting of (some combo of) accordion, tuba, ukulele or harp. They can improvise around whatever I play, and I’d like my guitar/vocal to be able to stand on its own.

    If you have a version of this you’ve already worked out, or are willing to pitch in with ideas for a few chords or other parts of the song, I would be grateful. If you’d like to contact me directly, my email is adam.scales@gmail.com

    Thank you.

    Adam

    #24543
    Guru
    Keymaster

    Great stuff!

    I do like the cover versions here, especially the vocal.

    For the guitar, I would like to hear more definition between the bass notes and the chords, should you play this finger style.

    If it’s a pick we’re going for we need movement between bass and chord as well as more space in the strumming pattern.

    What I’m hearing in the videos is too much legato playing. That’s what I’m trying to say basically.

    So with that in mind. I’ll create some suggested parts, just gotta work out how to insert pictures into the forum here…

    Anyway, until then, let’s look at the chords. In the original key of B.

    I got these off an app called irealpro, a great place to start.

    Intro

    ||: Bmaj7 B7 | Emaj7 ||

    A

    ||: Bmaj7 B7 | Emaj7 | Bmaj7 | Amaj7 |
    | Bmaj7 B7 | Emaj7 |1. G#m7 A#m D# | G#m C#7/G# C#m F#7 :||
    |2. G#m7 A#m D# |

    B

    ||: G#m7 D#7/A# | G#m7/B C#7 :||

    C

    | Emaj7 | Bmaj7 | Emaj7 | Dmaj7 |
    | Emaj7 | Bmaj7 | C#m7 | D#sus D#7 C#m F#7 |

    Coda (same as B section)

    ||: G#m7 D#7/A# | G#m7/B C#7 :||

    Now then,

    You might want to do this in A instead of B, meaning a tone down. You could then fit a capo to get in the original key or sing it lower.

    This would then be the chords:

    Intro

    ||: Amaj7 A7 | Dmaj7 ||

    A

    ||: Amaj7 A7 | Dmaj7 | Amaj7 | Gmaj7 |
    | Amaj7 A7 | Dmaj7 |1. F#m7 G#m C# | F#m B7/F# Bm E7 :||
    |2. F#m7 G#m C# |

    B

    ||: F#m7 C#7/G# | F#m7/A B7 :||

    C

    | Dmaj7 | Amaj7 | Dmaj7 | Amaj7 |
    | Dmaj7 | Amaj7 | Bm7 | C#sus C#7 Bm E7 |

    Coda (same as B section)

    ||: F#m7 C#7/G# | F#m7/A B7 :||

    So, before I start writing parts, lets decide what key and where the capo is going.

    Have a sing to these chords and let me know.

    I do love this song… I mean how could you not?

    Dan

    #24544
    Adam
    Participant

    Thanks, Dan – you sure work quick! :<)

    Let me play around strumming and humming, and get back to you. I can see the case for playing in A given my limited vocal range, but I’ll have a better grasp of that when I meet my vocal teacher. Just trying it on for size, it seems like a good fit.

    My last guitar teacher, whom you’ve probably heard of, is a monster finger-picker. And during my time with him, I adopted that style. I go both ways. Without a pick, my right hand is good for strumming, but much less fluid for moving across strings. With a pick, my right hand is equally good at both, and probably better than my left. Does make any sense? So, if I’m going to get some funky single bass notes in there, or some version of his solo, I suspect the pick is the way to go. But it probably depends on the arrangement.

    Thanks for this head start.

    #24546
    Guru
    Keymaster

    #24547
    Guru
    Keymaster

    That’s in the key of A

    #24551
    Adam
    Participant

    This is great, Dan. I like the Outro picking. Time for some practice and experimentation.

    I’m amazed at how quickly you came up with this. I guess that’s why you’re a guitar teacher…

    Thanks!

    #24552
    Guru
    Keymaster

    Cheers Adam,

    I wanted to be quick so we could see possible pitfalls.

    I just found the chords in the app and went for whatever my instinct came up with.

    I figured if there was any mistakes in there that would be worth discussing.

    The Latin vibe is important, that’s why I said initially I want more definition between bass line and chords.

    Dan

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