A mere mortal bass player might have connected the V chord to the VI- by playing the note in between the roots of each. But Paul McCartney starts the sequence two beats early, playing the root of the V and going down a half step before his three-note climb, resulting in a five-note run that fills out the entire gap in the vocals. Of course, little did I know at the time that this famous mop-top had gone on to be one of the most influential bass players ever.
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A few years ago, the NYU Music Experience Design Lab launched a web application called the aQWERTYon. The name is short for “QWERTY accordion.” The idea is to make it as easy to play music on the computer keyboard as it is with the chord buttons on an accordion. The aQWERTYon maps scales to the keyboard so that there are no “wrong notes,” and so that each column of keys plays a chord.
As with many musicians, coffee is a necessity to do what we do, most often nocturnally. I’ve lost count of both the number of late-night performances and studio sessions I’ve done over the years and iced coffees (my saving grace) that have helped me make it through long nights.