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Monday Notes

Nina Simone, Feeling Good. A song to explore soul music

[Monday Notes No. 144] Feeling Good is a soul piece made famous by Nina Simone in 1965. The song appeared the same year in a musical starring Cy Grant, but it was Nina Simone who made it popular. Her version is certainly more successful and intense, let us try to analyse it also to better…

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Monday Notes

James Brown Cold Sweat, a classic Rhythm & Blues piece

[Monday’s Notes No. 122] Rhythm & Blues was a kind of response of jazz music to rock, an antidote that was produced to resist the popularity of rock. Let us listen here to a song by Rhythm & Blues’ greatest performer, James Brown, entitled Cold Sweat.

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Monday Notes

Stevie Wonder, Where Were You When I Needed You

[Monday Notes no. 92] Stevie Wonder is one of the most creative and innovative musicians in soul music and beyond. On the album Music Of My Mind Stevie Wonder plays all the instruments, so it is a ‘one man album’ like those recorded years later by Prince and Paul McCartney, to give other examples. Let’s…

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Monday Notes

Bobby Hebb, Sunny. A Soul piece that is ideal for playing Jazz.

[Monday Notes No.58] Sunny is a 1966 Bobby Hebb song, a great Soul music classic. The very simple but effective harmonic progression has made the song enter the jazz repertoire. So it is often the case that Sunny is played in jam sessions, especially jazz-rock ones. Here is the analysis of the song and the…

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Monday Notes

Georgia On My Mind, Ray Charles and soul music

[Monday Notes No.48] Georgia on My Mind was composed by the great songwriter Hoagy Carmichael in 1930, but Ray Charles’ interpretation in 1960 surpassed the original in popularity, the pianist-singer turning it into one of his biggest hits.

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