Category Archives: Video Archive

Game of Thrones | Boyce Avenue


 
About this Video
Game of Thrones – Classical Guitar
I just love this great television series. The acting, the CGI work and the twisted plot lines. Whose going to die next? This type of quality work is in a league of its own in my opinion.

It never occured to me that the opening musical score could be ever be played as a guitar instrumental.

I did a search on Youtube to see what other creative souls have done. At first glance, none of what I heard was appealing enough to get excited about. I have my own ideas on how a solo guitar piece should go together along with an appealing backtrack to make it a worthwhile effort to undertake.

Eventually I came across a very nice rendition by Boyce Avenue. A quiet guitar intro followed by a nice driving orchestration that keeps spirit of the original sound track. I was hooked. Lets do this.

Here is a short run down of what I assembled for my rendition of the Game of Thrones music video.

Composed and written by Ramin Djawadi. The tune is in the key of Cm, in 3/4 time, about 53bpm (160bpm), instrumental pop. Capo at 3rd fret – makes things easier.

The usual effort of finding matching guitar tabs and access to a workable back track was at first met with brickwalls until I came across a guitar tabs post by Dave Tran – exactly arranged like the Boyce Avenue. What luck. He also has made a Youtube video on how to play this tune as per his tabs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NfJnB7gnUVkthe Awesome. Thanks Dave. I have a link in the playlist above as well.

I did my own version of the tabs to suit my style and ability. The guitar tabs I finally worked out are available as a download on the Members page in both PDF and Word format. Look out for any updates as I may revise the tab content as the tune matures.

Next was getting a compelling backing track. NADA available. After much consideration I decided to get the track professionally done. I am considering a release of a practice track version of my pro track in lieu of the actual back track due to copyright issues. I am close to getting releases to selected back tracks in my library.

If you do wish to follow through on doing your own backing track, I can tell where to go, what to do and provide an expected cost. Nothing is free. You either spend the time and resources on your own or you have a pro help out where needed. I can help you there.

NEWS FLASH – I have finally found a copyright broker\distributer that will handle the royalty, distribution and licensing issue for many of my back tracks. I will be offering my awesome instrumental backtracks for a small fee to cover my costs. If you are interested, become a member on my web site and register your back track choice.

CAVEAT – I will only go through the copyright release process if I have 10 or more people interested. So register on my site and spread the word my BT music will be available for download.

Guitar and Guitar Effects
I am using my Takemine classical guitar and use a capo on the third fret. Fingering looks like the Am shape but the tune is still played in Cm. Having a capo for this tune helps a lot when using open strings, where this tune has lots.

I am using only my Flint effects pedal for reverb and for use in the DAW recorder chain.

Audio and Video Production Tools
Audio recording is done using REAPER DAW, ART DI boxes and an ART USB based audio interface to get guitar sound to DAW.

Video production work is done in Adobe Premiere CS5. Original and final Video resolution is 1280x720p. Compression is about 7-10mb/s MP4. Youtube will transcode to their transmission specs anyway.

Get access to my Tabs and more – Be a member
 
Guitar TAB Sheets
Fully documented guitar TAB version. Written in MS WORD 2003, using generic Courier type font. Any version of MS Word after 1997 can open this file. In addition I have a PDF version as an option.

Also available is a blank guitar TAB work sheet for your own edits and mods in the same format and style as the full documented version.
 
Use the ‘Join Us’ menu item on top of this web page to become a member to my stuff – it’s free to join.

Please make any comments below regarding this video. I’ll get back to you if you have any questions. Thank you.

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Last of the Mohicans | Guitar Instrumental


About this Video
Last of the Mohicans
I enjoyed the motion picture (Micheal Mann – 1992 (Daniel Day Lewis) version, not the TV series of the 50’s) but most of all I was taken by the amazing score. It was a case where the producers of this motion picture got it right on many fronts. Unlike a lot of the junk coming out of Hollywood these days.

Composed by Trevor Jones and Randy Edelman, this score is widely recognized as an emotionally soaked masterpiece.

Key: Dm, 4/4 time, about 92bpm, instrumental pop

I felt the overall sweeping panoramic feel of the sound track, the well meshed strings, rhythmic drums and well placed brass could not be whittled down as a guitar instrumental piece to give it any justice. I was wrong. There was a lot creativity out there that has done some awesome work.

During my search on Youtube I did find work done by Dave Monk (oldguitarmonkey, moniker) on the ‘Last of the Mohicans’ main theme. The most compelling of the lot that I have heard.

At the same time, I found work done by Boyce Avenue on their rendition of ‘Game of Thrones’ (GoT). Two heavily orchestrated scores brought down to basics yet has kept the feel of the tune intact and in so doing, making a solo guitar version possible. My work on GoT is in another post.

Dave Monks version is solid and is accompanied by a great backing track. Simple yet compelling and keeping the tribal undertones of the tune. I did a search for a similar backing track and could not find one of any value to me. I’m assuming he either did the work himself or had it produced for him. Either way, very nice work.

But what good is learning this tune with no suitable backing track to play against. I did some experimenting in Band in Box. Not any great luck. The next best thing was to have the back track professional produced, which I did at a very reasonable cost.

If you wish to follow through on doing you own backing track, I can tell where to go, what to do and provide an expected cost. Nothing is free. You either spend the time and resources on your own or you have a pro help out where needed. I can help you there.

As an alternative, I will be releasing (if not already) this back track.

Check out status of copyright release and other info on this track right here.

Just a curiosity. The overall music message of this piece at first was a bit confusing to me. It has powerful undertones and rhythm of a north american native feel, yet it is also called The Gael, strongly suggesting Celtic roots. Go figure. It may very well be because the movie score is recognized in two pieces. One called Promontory (or main theme) and The Gael. Some how the two pieces well mixed into the final score of the film.

A parallel task to the sound track was nailing down the guitar tabs. Again forget it in terms of whats out there. I ended up adapting my own guitar tab version anyway using Riff Station software as my main tool to help transcribe my tabs. Before doing any tab work, I recommend to work out the key and the chords first. It really helps in getting the proper notes when working on tabs.

The guitar tabs I finally worked out are available as a download on the Members page in both PDF and Word format. Look out for any updates as I may revise the tab content as the tune matures.

Special Note – Muted Strings Sound Technique
During a short interval of tune play (see tabs Bar17 to Bar21 of my TAB sheet), the guitar strings are muted in an arranged but fixed playing pattern — Dm (2x), C (2x), F, C, Dm (2x). The palm of hand is placed just over the bridge of the guitar just enough to cover each string preventing regular vibration. Experiment to find a good palm position, with just enough to cover the strings but not enough to dead mute them. Strings should still be allowed be heard – fast attack, fast decay. You only need to mute three strings. Any other finger placement for the chords risks annoying buzzing.

The chord progression requires a different finger placement for the last C chord to make the sound feel correct. This is an instant where choosing the prime notes of the chords that occupy only the D, G and B strings – Dm on the 7th, C on the 5th, F on the 9th and again C on the 9th – roughly, works well. See my TAB sheet for more clarity. The Last C chord finger placement gives the tonal progression its proper sounding effect.

Guitar and Guitar Effects
I am using my Jazzmaster on this tune (.o11 w/flat wound strings). As such, any hopes of getting any brightness is out the window just due to the strings and the factory pickups. In return, I get deep tones and no string buzz on slides. I do want to get a bit more brightness. Use of bridge pickup and playing towards the bridge sharpens the attack on certain music phrases. Jazzmaster pups are purposely designed to provide warm tones – Jazz, blues, soft pop. Use of an EQ pedal set to a slight treble boost helps get the tonal edge I want.

I will probably record this tune again, with a brighter sounding guitar like a Fender Stratocaster. Gotta save my pennnies.

I am using only an EQ pedal (hi-pass) and my Flint effects pedal for reverb in my guitar to recorder chain. I use the Jazzmaster vibrato bar for trills at key phrase end points during play (Jazzmaster does not offer great vibrato leeway in its design – its very subtle).

Audio and Video Production Tools
Audio recording is done using REAPER DAW, ART DI boxes and an ART USB based audio interface to get guitar sound to DAW.

Video production work is done in Adobe Premiere CS5. Original and final Video resolution is 1280x720p. Compression is about 7-10mb/s MP4. Youtube will transcode to their transmission specs anyway.

Membership Access Items – It’s free to register
 
Guitar TAB Sheets
Fully documented guitar TAB version. Written in MS WORD 2003, using generic Courier type font. Any version of MS Word after 1997 can open this file.

Also available is a blank guitar TAB work sheet for your own edits and mods in the same format and style as the full documented version.
 
Use the ‘Join Us’ menu item on top of this web page to become a member – it’s free to join.

Please make any comments below regarding this video. I’ll get back to you if you have any questions. Thank you.

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Claude Ciari | La Playa (The Beach)


 
About this Video
La Playa or Spanish for ‘the beach’

I came across this tune recently and liked it immediately. It has a smooth melodic latin sound and playing style. The first artist I came across playing the tune was Claude Ciari. The posted video was a vintage early version of a music video shot in black and white on 16mm film. The date of release looks like around 1964.

There was a similar video title description – La Oreja de Van Gogh – La Playa, but was clearly not the tune I was interested in.

After having a listen to the many other artists playing La Playa, I thought Claude Ciari not only presented this tune in its release in 1964, but wrote it. However, further reading showed this is not the case. The author of this tune was Jo Van Wetter. In addition, I thought this was just an instrumental, but low and behold it had lyrics as well as I discovered, written by Pierre Barouch. I did see one video of the tune being sung with French lyrics. Very nice indeed.

For my part I believe that Claude Ciari is the face and player of this tune and would represent my take on re-producing my own music video version.

I searched for guitar tabs and any available backtracks before I would take on this tune as a learning starting point. The guitar tabs I did find had errors and there was no backtrack to play against. So I built a simple backtrack using my handy Chordpulse software and worked from that just to get going. I ended up adapting my own guitar tab version anyway using this tool.

The tune is in the key of Dm, played in 4/4 time, has a tempo of about 100 to 110 (settle on 105bpm – go figure) and has a basic latin rhumba rhythm for the playing style.

The tabs I finally worked out are posted as a free download found on my Resources page in both PDF and Word format. Look out for any updates as I may change the tab content to new things I discover.

Back Tracks
The biggest challenge has been to make a pro sounding backtrack myself this time, verses the earlier collaborations I had done for my past tunes. I investigated several composition software products like Presonus Studio One, Cubase, Cakewalk and others and have settled on ‘Band in the Box’ or BAIB.

Those other products are certainly powerful music making tools, but the expense and the steep learning curve are real showstoppers for me. I was sold on how BIAB worked and the large music library in their Real band, Real Tracks and Real Drums product line. The lower cost was also a big factor (bigger bang for the buck – I just got the simple Pro version) and the learning curve was surprisingly workable. The user interface is a bit clunky but reasonably intuitive. The on-line chat and email support was very good.

In learning BIAB, I first developed the song using a simple Real Track supported 4/4 ballad style as there was only a simple unusable low quality MIDI track in rhumba style available. In the end, I did buy a latin based Real Drums bundle for just $29 bucks ($50 CAD) and rebuilt the back track. You can have a sample listen of my finished tracks on the Resources page. The BIAB business model where you buy what you need is a big plus for me. I really don’t need the big bundles offered even though it has a lot of great tracks, but in the end will never be used as far as I can see.

I have used my Takamine acoustic for this tune. I’ll probably release an electric version using my Jazzmaster later.

Please provide comments below on my music video. Thanks.

See below for additional information that may be of interest.
 
Equipment Used and Settings

  • Takamine acoustic guitar.
  • Strymon Flint Reverb, tremolo effect not used. Slight reverb only

Backtracks

  • My fully orchestrated BIAB BT version is available as a member. Get both the ballad and rhumba MP3 versions if you like.
  • I can make the Chordpulse version available if need be. Will need sufficient requests to do so.

 
Guitar TAB Sheets
Written in MS WORD 2003, using generic Courier type font. Any version of Word after 1997 can open this file. Must be a member for access to my guitar tabs and/or backing track(s).

A blank guitar TAB work sheet for your own edits and mods are also available. Must be a member to access. Join Us – see menu item on top of this web page to Join.

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Sari nande


 
About this Video
Browsing Youtube the other day (as I do often for music videos), I came across a wonderful tune called Sari nande. It’s an Indonesian folk song originating somewhere in the 60’s by an Indonesian artist named Andy Tielman (and bros) from what I can gather. The original melody was played with lyrics and simple instrumentation.

I don’t know if he wrote the tune, but he does promote it with his band on the road. I think his last real tour was in the early 2000’s. The tune is very catchy as it has a few nice hooks.

I was taken by one of the first guitar only (with backup band) version I listened to from a dutch party band named The Locomotions. Another band the Dixie Aces also did a very nice job. The later guitar only instrumental versions are not like the original vocal folk tune from Tielman, but has certainly captured the spirit of Tielmans verses and melody but with a more punchy modern bent.

As I found out, there were many posted contributions to this tune. I settled on listening and documenting versions done by the The Locomotions, Dave Monk, the Dixie Aces and Supertuneless. All of these guitar based artists carry the core of the tune in their own way.

The tune is in the key of A and appear to have only 3 chords. A, D and E. You could be using E7’s and Bm as well in places, but needs experimenting.

The tune in general is not hard to learn. There is a fast mandolin like sounding section in the tune if you want to take up the challenge.

I have developed the guitar tabs (in Word and as a PDF) by listening to a combination of Dave Monk and the Locomotions versions. There are a lot of variations and improvisations you can add to the tune using my tabs as a base to any new work.

The posted tabs I did find online appear to differ a lot in phrasing or have outright errors. My tab version is a composite of the artist(s) work just noted. Use it with confidence. It’s very very close to what is being played. I may miss some double fingerings, slides etc., but add them based on your playing style.

As far as playing along with any backtracks, I could not find any online (Karaoke or other wise).

The amateur guitar players who posted videos playing this tune, have used others backtrack works by permission, produced their own or played as a band. Good on them. Nice work. I didn’t think it a good idea to ask them for their materials.

So I decided to get my own backing track produced by a pro composer and musician. I am in the process of learning composition and the recording arts, but its a long road. In the meantime I contract the pro’s.

Early on I did begin the process of creating my own basic backtrack using Chordpulse software as a quick and practical way to practice the tune rather than playing along with an existing Youtube video. Of course, it is not as exciting as a studio produced version, but it did do a lot for learning this tune for now. It is rather incomplete.

There may be three downloads planned, one as an MP4 video playing the Chordpluse tune (visual chord progressions), two, just the soundtrack as an MP3 and three, the actual Chordpulse program file so you can load and modify the tracks yourself (you will need to buy the Chordpulse software – its cheap). It will be in the key of A and be running at a tempo of about 96bpm like the original.

See below for additional information that may be of interest.
 
Equipment Used and Settings

  • Fender Jazzmaster guitar. Neck pickups for brighter sound
  • Strymon Flint Reverb, tremolo effect slightly used
  • Digitech Delay pedal (still experimenting)
  • Lots of vibrato needed. Typically used at end of phrases.

Artists and Versions
Listen for the Dave Monk, The Locomotions and Dixie Aces versions on my video Playlist above this text. See Playlist icon location in upper left hand corner of the video frame – Playlist.
 
 
Membership Access Items – It’s free to register
 
Guitar TAB Sheets
Fully documented guitar TAB version. Written in MS WORD 2003, using generic Courier type font. Any version of MS Word after 1997 can open this file.

Also available is a blank guitar TAB work sheet for your own edits and mods in the same format and style as the full documented version.
 
Backtracks Info

  • A nice variation of my pro backtrack will be available for download, but I need an indication of interest.
  • I couldn’t find any other backtracks to share. As a result, I generated my own practice tracks using Chordpulse, until my pro track was ready.

Use the ‘Join Us’ menu item on top of this web page to become a member – it’s free to join.

Please make any comments below regarding this video. I’ll get back to you if you have any questions. Thank you.

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Video Archive

Manalili | Faithful Love


 

Manalili | Among My Souvenirs


 

Electromaniacs | I Miss You So


 

Manalili | End of the World


 

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Manalili | End of the World


 
About this Video
Another vintage tune that has kept the test of time, thanks to Cesar Manalili.

Originally written by Arthur Kent and most notably recorded by Brenda Lee, Cesar Manalili took it on and produced a nice instrumental version for guitar. Flowing, dramatic, great guitar sounds.

I would say the instrumental backing to Manalili’s guitar is pretty classy and adds to the dramatic musical effect.

I’m playing this musical work in the Key B and to the original Manalili arrangement and tempo with some added phrases and improvisations.

 
…oops pay attention to these points
There is a lot of points here to consider to do this tune any justice. Manalili has earned his nick name guitar master for a reason. This tune has many tough bars to work on – for an amateur. Concentrated finger work, heavy vibrato and reverb on some bars – making for very dramatic effects. Applying nice but difficult lead breaks which I’m still learning to finesse. Do lots of finger exercises.

I would highly recommend you review and learn guitar bends and slides from the guitar gurus on Youtube. It will provide lots of heads up in getting this tune start to sound good.

You will have to work on finding a working reverb setting and maybe use an expression pedal to get the variations used throughout the tune. It’s deep and sustaining. Tremolo is also a subtle but influencing factor in getting the tune to sound good in my view. String bends with vibrato combos. This tune has got it all. Give yourself lots of time to learn this tune. Learn it in pieces. This is where software tools like RIFF station will be of huge benefit – looping, segmenting, tempo control etc.

Additionally, I have produced a practice backtrack using Chordpulse. The backtrack is free to download – (see Resources menu item on the top of this page), but you will need the Chordpulse software product to play it – Just $22 USD bucks A great deal.

I think all this stuff I just mentioned is best pointed out in a ‘How to’ video. A video will best describe what has to be done to make this tune work. Even coming from an amateur like me may be very helpful in the end. Compromise here is very thin. This has been and continues to be a challenging tune to learn. It is by far the toughest tune I have undertaken so far.

I keep mentioning getting ‘that sound’ in my past meanderings. Well here is an example. In a few bars at the start of the tune, you will have to play the guitar strings very close to the bridge for that twangy sharp attack (bright) sound. Country guitar players use this technique a lot. Don’t get too close to the bridge – you will loose volume and it will sound too sharp. You will have to find a place on the string that works for you. The key thing is to have consistency in the sound of the strings, too flat, too bright. You must find that spot on the strings you plan to play and stay there for the duration of the music phrase. Use a hard pick to help add to the sound attack.

Just a note and I’ll say it gain, that some of the effects you are hearing could very well be studio magic (done in post production) and may be quite difficult to emulate if you want to perform it live. So don’t loose any sleep over it. Just experiment with your pedals until you are happy. You may very well find that a single effects setting will work quite well throughout the tune. Then again Manalili makes it look easy.

Bottom line, choose an effects setting you like. Fighting for that studio sound can be a real uphill battle.

This where my desire to get an expression pedal to fool around with comes in (there is one that works with the Flint). I gotta save my pennies for that, so I’ll make do with what I have.
 
Equipment Used and Settings

  • Fender Jazzmaster guitar; pickup switch in treble position, all controls mid range
  • Strymon Flint Reverb, (long and sustaining) reverb effect heavily used. I use a mild but obviously present tremolo setting on the Flint. It will mix well with the vibrato to give a nice dynamic ebb and flow to the overall sound.
  • Use the vibrato bar in some key spots. See the video for where and what I mean.

Backtracks

  • My orchestrated BT version (not yet ready for download. I need an indication of interest before I release.
  • Listen to selected backtracks from my Playlist above
  • I have a nice Chordpulse rendition as a practice track – select from my playlist above. Recommend you get Chordpulse. Its only $22 bucks. It won’t disappoint. A good investment overall.

 
Artists and Versions
Listen for the Manalili, Brenda Lee versions on my video Playlist above this text for more context. See Playlist location in upper left hand corner of the video frame – Playlist.

Guitar TAB Sheets
Written in MS WORD 2003, using generic Courier type font. Any version of Word after 1997 can open this file. Must be a member for access to my guitar tabs and/or backing track(s).

A blank guitar TAB work sheet for your own edits and mods are also available. Must be a member access. Join Us – see menu item on top of this web page to Join.

Please make any comments below regarding this video. I’ll get back to you if you have any questions. Thank you.

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Electromaniacs | I Miss You So


About this Video
In my view “I Miss You So” is the signature tune for the Electromaniacs, a 60’s based Filipino band whose musical influence is still heard today, primarily in the worlds of Youtube and other popular video hosting sites, enjoying cult status. The tune has all the elements I like to hear and play in music; a nice flowing melody, dramatic breaks, smooth guitar lines and is easy on the ear, all in one neat package.

It might be me in old age talking, but this tune covers a lot of musical ground for me.

Penned and played by Ernie Delgado on lead guitar, this tune has not lost any of its appeal. It just grows on you.

Though disbanded some years ago, several attempts were made to re-assemble the band as short as a few years ago, but to no avail. The band itself may be a memory for now, but not its music.

Cesar Manalili, another Pinoy legend has taken on this tune as well and made a few changes to suit his style, but for the most part the musical arrangement has stayed a intact. Adding yet another sound to a great tune.

This musical work is composed in the Key C and set in 6/8 time (get my TAB sheet from links below). In my version an entire post section of the tune (the second bridge section) has been removed and replaced by a shorter improvised more driving section played to the end. I feel it brings another dimension to the tune, yet still keeping the same chord progressions. Let me know what you think after having a listen.

As in Faithful Love, I have had a fully orchestrated backtrack produced that is more modern sounding with a jazzy driving feel. That’s why the guitar has to be played with the neck pickups selected and tone controls set to a mid to high roll off to get that smooth jazzy sound the Jazzmaster can produce. I am not using an EQ pedal like before, but now use just a delay and reverb pedal only, to get the ‘plucky’ Delgado sound. I’ll post a video on how this is done. Suffice it to say the sound track recorded for this video uses my pedal combo setup. I’m still experimenting.

 
…oops pay attention to this…
This is not so obvious, but the opening note sequences before the main melody begins appears to be deceptively slow. It sounds mellow and smoothly paced by the original artists but you will find out this is not the case when you get down and practice these first set of bars. There is a lot of notes to play in those early sequences over what feels to be short period of time.

To learn it, you will probably be slowing down the tempo to get all the notes in those early bars played on time, then slowly speeding it up towards the actual recorded tempo. As you progress, you may find out that you will get to a speed cap – a personal limitation. No biggie of course, but don’t be surprised if you don’t get to full speed. I slowed down my version by about 5% -7% from the original speed just to get the timing correct and still having the backtrack sounding right and the pace feeling good. I use RIFF Station software to slow or speed up the tempo along with its looping ability so you can play a selected section of bars. A real boon to learning the tune faster.

If you adapt and accept a much slower tempo just to get the opening sequence squeezed in, means the rest of the tune will also be played slower, resulting in a plodding along effect, unless you add more filler notes. This doesn’t have to be the case as the rest of the tune can be played comfortably faster.

Conclusion, learn to play the opening and closing sequence as fast as possible, yet keep its intended smooth flow. The rest of the tune will benefit.

Still on the opening sequences. There is some question in my mind regarding the use of a slide or a hammer-on to the intro notes. See notes in TAB below on just the D string. It just sounds bad.

E ————–
B ———7-5–
G ———6-5–
D —–4h5——
A ————–
E ————–
Hammer on or
 
E ————–
B ———7-5–
G ———6-5–
D —–4/5——
A ————–
E ————–
Slide on D string

I’ve played with it and it always sounds choppy. I slowed the note sequence down in RIFF Station and discovered there is no hammer or slide, it’s just plain picking the notes. I use a down stroke on the first note and an up stroke on the second. See my updated tab sheet to see what I mean on the Resources page. The intro now works well in terms of tonal sequence. To get the sound with less of an attack or more mellow sounding, choose the neck pickups and flatten out the tone control. Now it really sounds the way I think it should.

 
Equipment Used and Settings

  • Fender Jazzmaster. Neck pickups, flat tone controls, max volume
  • Strymon Flint Reverb – heavy, tremolo effect to very subtle
  • No vibrato needed, though it may sound more dramatic if you plan to experiment for your sound. Try it out yourself and let me know how she goes.
  • Digitech X Series, Digital Delay set for short rep (I’ll explain in my equipment video)

‘I Miss You So’ Backtrack(s) Info

  • I have a fully orchestrated version for release, please ask if available.
  • I can’t find any other nice back tracks for this tune. I’ll post if I do find any.

 
‘I Miss You So’ Artists and Versions
Listen for the Manalili, Electromaniacs versions on my video Playlist above this text. See Playlist location in upper left hand corner of the video frame – Playlist.

‘I Miss You So’ Guitar TAB Sheets
Written in MS WORD 2003, using generic Courier type font. Any version of Word after 1997 can open this file. Must be a member for access to my guitar tabs and/or backing track(s).

A blank guitar TAB work sheet for your own edits and mods are also available. Must be a member for access. Join Us – see menu item on top of this web page to Join.

Please make any comments below regarding this video. I’ll get back to you if you have any questions. Thank you.

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Manalili | Among My Souvenirs


 
About this Video
Originally written in 1927 by Lawrence Wright, Among My Souvenirs has been performed by many great artists since then like Louis Armstrong, Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra. The song itself then languished for a decade or so through the forties until Connie Francis in 1959 brought the song back to life and into the pop forefront. It’s the updated arrangement at the time that gave the song its more popular appeal and it didn’t hurt having the song performed by a rising star like Connie Francis.

It’s the Connie Francis arrangement that has been adapted by the master guitar player Cesar Manalili on his release of the song done somewhere in the 1980’s at the height of his musical popularity.

Manalili, using his trademark sound along with the backing of a pop orchestra is what appealed to me when I was first researching the next tune to adapt for Bill’s Music. I only made one significant change to my adaptation and that was the choice of guitar. I opted for a classical guitar rather than an electric guitar. After much comparison, the acoustic won out. It just sounded better.

I’m playing this musical work in the Key A and to the original Manalili arrangement in 12/8 time. I had a fully orchestrated backtrack produced that matches the pop musical style and sound I wanted.

I will be releasing (if it is not already) this back track.

Check out status of copyright release and other info on this track right here.

See below for additional information that may be of interest.
 
…oops pay attention to these points
There are several areas that need attention when playing this tune. One, the opening bars have no music for proper intro timing. Any practice track must have timing ticks inserted (at first) to make sure you enter the song correctly (there are three areas in the tune like that). I”ll provide a practice backtrack with the timing ticks inserted soon. Two, keep time with the bass player. You’ll know what I mean when you hear the backtrack.

Surprisingly, my Flint pedal with reverb set to a longer sustain is all I needed to get the sound I wanted. Good ‘ol Flint has come through.
 
Equipment Used and Settings

  • Takamine – Classical acoustic guitar, nylon strings. Flat tonal range set using builtin EQ
  • Strymon Flint Reverb, tremolo effect not used
  • No vibrato needed, though it may sound more dramatic if you plan to experiment for your sound. Try it out yourself and let me know how she goes.

Backtracks Info

  • My fully orchestrated version may be available. Must be a member to verify.
  • Can’t find any other nice tracks. I’ll add them to the playlist above if I do find any.

 
Artists and Versions
Listen for the Manalili, Frank Sinatra and Connie Francis versions on my video Playlist above this text. See Playlist icon location in upper left hand corner of the video frame – Playlist.

Guitar TAB Sheets
Written in MS WORD 2003, using generic Courier type font. Any version of Word after 1997 can open this file. Must be a member for access to my guitar tabs and/or backing track(s).

A blank guitar TAB work sheet for your own edits and mods are also available. Must be a member for access. Join Us – see menu item on top of this web page to Join.

Please make any comments below regarding this video. I’ll get back to you if you have any questions. Thank you.

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Santo and Johnny | Sleep Walk


 
About this Video
Note: updated video -Dec 2016

If you ask most music fans of early rock n roll, Sleep Walk is Santo and Johnny’s trademark tune. It has been recorded and played by a number of marquis musicians and amateurs alike over the years since it was first released in 1959. The tune was written and recorded by Santo, Johnny and Ann Farina.

There are lots of great and not so great renditions of Sleep Walk on YouTube. It’s fun to listen and learn from the contributors and read the follow on comments.  Check it out yourself.  This release is my take on this tune. I use the ‘Shadows’ (or maybe it’s the Ventures??) back track version in my video.  It’s certainly rough on the edges, so I plan to post several more versions so improvements can be seen and heard.

I’m playing this work in the original Key of C and follow the modified arrangement done by the ‘Shadows’ err Ventures rendition.  The chord sequence for the most part is the well adapted rock sequence of the 50’s of C, Am, F(m), G. There is a lot of debate whether the F chord should be an Fm.   The choice is not cast in stone.  Let’s just say you will need both.  I think the first riff through it’s an F followed by nothing but Fm’s other than the chorus, then back to Fm. So choose what feels and sounds best for you. See my TAB sheet link below for my interpretation of this version of the tune.
 
…oops pay attention to these points
The thing that gives this tune a nice feel is the blended note delays that occur after the underlying chord changes.  Couple that with a well balanced reverb and string bend effect and voila.  You can hear what I mean in the main verse structure.  Just listen and feel as to where they are and emulate them in your playing.

I do use the vibrato bar in concert with a legato sliding effect on the guitar in my attempts to get that original pedal steel sound.  Tweeking EQ will also help round out those highs.  Lots of experimentation is required.
 
Equipment Used and Settings

  • Fender Jazzmaster guitar; pickup switch in treble position, controls mid range
  • I use a thick stiff pick for faster attacks on the strings
  • Strymon Flint reverb setting MIX -1/2 turn, COLOR-3/4 turn DECAY-1/2 turn, 80’s switch, tremolo effect not used
  • Boss EQ Pedal Model GE-7, set freq sliders for high pass.
  • I use a Behringer Eurolive B112 PA speaker for practice when I want to make noise, where both the guitar and back track audio feeds are mixed. This keeps the sound tone consistant and controllable in a small room Like I have, in contrast to a separate PA for the back track audio and a guitar amp – just too much variation in tonal quality between the two audio sources. On the other hand, to keep things simpler I just put on my earphones and adjust accordingly
  • The guitar EQ pedal is first in the effects chain, followed by the Flint reverb effect before being mixed and output to the speaker PA or my earphones.

 
Backtracks

  • My pro version back track used in my latest video release may be available for download. I will need an indication of interest first.
  • You can also use the back track offered by the Karaoke-Version  web site, and yes you have to buy the customized track. It’s only $1.99.  This version follows the original exactly.
  • I have used in my first video, what is referred to as the Shadows version. It has been modified from the original.
  • Alternatively, I also have my Chordpulse rendition available as a practice track to get you going. It follows the original score.

Load your selected back track MP3 for practice in your favourite playback software.  I use RIFF Station or if you have it instead, use Song Surgeon software for its looping feature to isolate and repeat or slowdown the sequences to practice.
 
Artists and Versions
Listen to the original Sleep Walk track from my playlist in the videobox (upper left hand corner) above this text to get a sense of the original.

Guitar TAB Sheets – Member Access Only
You can download the original Sleep Walk plus other Tab versions as a Member.  It follows the released version of Santo and Johnny’s music score to the best of my interpretation.
 

*Notes:
Written in MS WORD 2003, using generic Courier type font. Any version of Word after 1997 can open this file. Must be a member for access to my guitar tabs and/or my produced backing track(s).

A blank guitar TAB work sheet for your own edits and mods are also available. Must be a member for access. Join Us – see menu item on top of this web page to Join.

Please make any comments below regarding this video. I’ll get back to you if you have any questions. Thank you.

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Manalili | Faithful Love


 
Acknowledgements
I do want to make a comment here regarding those guitar players who early on have made this tune visible in many ways and brought it to the forefront for all those who love this kind of music. Youtubers like Stratpeter, BurnsErnst and special thanks to Rudy Dela Vega. There are of course many others who have taken an interest in this tune and worked with it. Good on ya. Thanks guys.

I have posted a remix of this tune. It’s at the top of the playlist (Jun 11, 2016).

About this Video
This tune has been around for quite some time (about 30 to 40 years) and recorded by several (not so well known) artists over that period before it caught on here in North America as a cult piece.

Originally written and recorded by Danny Holmsen (at times mistaken for D. Holmer), The Ramrods, Electromaniacs and Cesar Manalili, all took a stab at it. Each iteration sounding more modern and smoother than the last, but keeping the style and arrangement more or less intact.

I would say the last version by Cesar Manalili is a more nicely arranged and orchestrated version, with the Electromaniacs release not far behind. Just as a note, you will notice that the Manalili and Electromaniacs versions has a different opening series of bars.

Faithful Love has quite a strong following with both Filipinos, where the tune gained popularity (Manalili, Electromanics) and the eclectic music scene. It is not unusual to have Faithful Love requested at a Filipino wedding event even today.

I’m playing this musical work in the Key A and to the original Manalili arrangement. Though the original tune was written in the key of A, I’ve heard other amateur renditions in other keys and free improv styles.

I don’t have the original CD’s where more information like publishing house markings would be present. If there is someone with this information, please forward it and I will gladly post it here in an update.

What gives this song its appeal is its hook of nicely layered notes in the main verses. The rest of the tune (the break or bridge section) is somewhat flat and loses a bit of its steam in the original, but applying some improvisation fills this void. Non-the-less, Manalili’s Faithful Love is a relatively straight forward tune to learn and is a joy to play.

See below for additional information that may be of interest.
 
…oops pay attention to these points
There are two areas in which to pay attention when playing this tune, and it has to do with good ‘ol timing. One is in the layered ‘hook’ section where the notes must be held and sustained while moving to the next set of notes – almost a note rolling action, and second is the bridge notes before playing the chorus the second time around.

Lastly, listen for the trademark Manalili sound in his somewhat exaggerated (but nice) reverb setting and subtle vibrato action. His reverb is typically deep and sustained without any noticeable fading. So if you have effects pedals that can provide this feature you will be using it. I use the Strymon Flint effects box to give me my reverb and tremolo effect. Lots of diddlin’ here. Still workin’ on it.

Keep in mind as well, that the effects you are hearing could very well be studio magic at play and getting ‘that sound’ may be quite difficult if you want to perform it live.
 
Equipment Used and Settings

  • Fender JazzMaster; pickup switch in treble position, all controls mid range
  • Strymon Flint Reverb and tremolo effect is used
  • Vibrato bar (yes it’s called tremolo) is used to get that nice twangy effect

 
Artists and Versions
Listen for the Manalili, Electromaniacs versions on my video Playlist above this text. See Playlist location in upper left hand corner of the video frame – Playlist.
 
 
Membership Access Items – It’s free to register
 
Guitar TAB Sheets
Fully documented guitar TAB version. Written in MS WORD 2003, using generic Courier type font. Any version of MS Word after 1997 can open this file.
 
Faithful Love Guitar Tabs sheet
 
Also available is a blank guitar TAB work sheet for your own edits and mods in the same format and style as the full documented version.
 
Backtracks Info

  • My pro-produced BT may be available – I will need an indication of interest first. Contact me.
  • Listen to selected backtracks from my Playlist above
  • I don’t have a Chordpulse rendition. Don’t plan on creating one.

Use the ‘Join Us’ menu item on top of this web page to become a member – it’s free to join.

Please make any comments below regarding this video. I’ll get back to you if you have any questions. Thank you.

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