Fusion Jazz Rock comes alive at that hands of Jeff Beck and Tal Wilkenfeld

Stevie Wonder is renown for his writing a plethora of great tunes.  And Jeff Beck is a master as taking ownership of other people’s songs by shaping and sculpturing the musical notes into a sound piece that causes the listener to want more.

Jeff Beck and Tal Wilkenfeld
Jeff Beck and Tal Wilkenfeld playing "Cause We've Ended As Lovers"

Wonder’s songs are renowned for being quite difficult to sing. He has a very developed sense of harmony and uses many extended chords utilizing extensions such as 9ths, 11ths, 13ths, b5s, etc. in his compositions. Many of his melodies make abrupt, unpredictable changes. Many of his vocal melodies are also melismatic, meaning that a syllable is sung over several notes. Some of his best known and most frequently covered songs are played in keys which are more often found in jazz than in pop and rock.  For example, “Superstition”, “Higher Ground” and “I Wish” are in the key of E flat minor, and feature distinctive riffs in the E flat minor pentatonic scale (i.e. largely on the black notes of the keyboard).

Jeff Beck began working with Stevie Wonder and created the original drum beat for “Superstition” while in the studio with Wonder.   After writing the song Wonder offered it to Beck to record, but at the insistence of his own manager Wonder himself recorded it first. Beck was instead offered “Cause We’ve Ended As Lovers,” which he recorded on Blow by Blow in 1975.  Jeff Beck would later record his own version of  “Superstition” as a part of the album Beck, Bogert & Appice.

But here, you will hear and see Jeff Beck play the song given him by Stevie Wonder “Cause We’ve Ended As Lovers” and observe the incredible musical talent of Tal Wilkenfeld as she plays a solo on her bass.

Tal Wilkenfeld

She also has her own band where she demonstrates her musicality using a fusion of writing styles as heard in this song: “The River

Tal Wilkenfeld plays fusion jazz rock on bass
Tal Wilkenfeld - if a young woman is going to play bass like this.. couldn't she be fat, or ugly, or smelly, or something ? L.O.L. Tal is an awesome bass player!

of Life” from her first album “Transformation.”  Like many songs of this type, the chord arrangement is not complex, the elements of the song have lots of drama played with dynamic expression.  The melody is estab
lished early with Tal on her bass, and then the song grows with inclusion of a saxophone solo that is laced with complex drum and bass playing dynamics.  The piano lays down nice jazz chords to give the soloist space to play through.  What starts as a calm song turns into a rambunctious, energetic tune.

Tal Wilkenfeld – bass
Wayne Krantz – guitar
Seamus Blake – tenor sax
Geoff Keezer .- piano
Keith Carlock – drums

Guest appearances by percussionist Samuel Torres and Bassist Oteil Burbridge

Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire: What Happens When God’s Spirit Invades the Hearts of His People

In 1972, the Brooklyn Tabernacle could barely draw twenty people to a Sunday service.  Today it is six thousand strong, a testament of what God can do when men and women begin to pour out their hearts to God.

And what does heart pouring sound like?


Continue reading Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire: What Happens When God’s Spirit Invades the Hearts of His People

Smoke on the Water: Japanese or Original with Steve Morse – What Say You?

OK music fans..

My friend Katy Lundeen turned me onto the Japanese orchestra performance of:

Smoke On The Water by Deep Purple

This is a very popular song because of its catchy chord combination:

Pretty good, unique arrangement, and a big sound.

But, then I desired to remember what really attracted me to the song when it came out on August 16, 1972 – also played IN JAPAN by Deep Purple.  So, I went looking for the song and found STEVE MORRIS is now playing this song with Deep Purple.

Roger Glover and Steve Morse of Deep Purple jamming
Roger Glover and Steve Morse of Deep Purple jamming

Smoke on the Water tells the true story about December 4, 1971 when the Deep Purple band was set up in Montreux, Switzerland preparing to record an album.  The Montreux Casino (referred to as “the gambling house” in the song) was hosting Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention (another favorite group of mine)  with a concert held in the casino’s theater.  During the show, in the middle of Don Preston’s synthesizer solo on “King Kong”, the casino caught fire when someone in the audience fired a flare gun into the rattan covered ceiling, which is mentioned in the song as  “some stupid with a flare gun.”  The fire destroyed the entire casino complex, along with all the Mothers’ equipment. The “smoke on the water” that became the title of the song (credited to bass guitarist Roger Glover, who related how the title occurred to him when he suddenly woke from a dream a few days later) referred to the smoke from the fire spreading over Lake Geneva from the burning casino as the members of Deep Purple watched the fire from their hotel across the lake.

Now you know the rest of the story!

Steve Morris is a hard-rock  guitar player’s envy!  Watch what this young man can do with left-handed hammer-ons (no picking).

So, what say you?  Do you like Deep Purple and this song? How about that story in the song?

Share your comment and click on the LIKE and SHARE buttons!

Compare the Thiel Foundation 20 under 20 video responses

Dear Friends:

We all applaud Keil’s completion of the project to respond to Thiel Foundation’s request for response on two questions:  a fellowship for 20 under 20.

Here is Keil’s response: Keil and what he believes for the Thiel Foundation

After reviewing the other videos submitted for the fellowship award of $100,000.00, we think Keil has a good chance of getting selected.

What say you?  What do you think?

Please set aside 20-minutes to view these videos submitted for Thiel Foundation’s award: 20 under 20.  If you agree with our review, then click on the YouTube LIKE button for Keil’s video response.  Also, leave some comments.. here and at YouTube.

Go to Youtube.com and search on these keywords: Thiel foundation fellowship 20 under 20

Here is the link I used: YouTube’s Thiel Foundation – 20 under 20

We look forward to reading your comments.  Please share this with your friends, too.   The more people viewing Keil’s video, the better. Having a large number of views at YouTube will only help Keil’s rank in getting the fellowship award.

Thanks for your time!