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Thursday, March 13, 2008

I guess it really is Wonderful!

I really do love this piece, especially the nice jazzy feel that's introduced to what is really more of a Broadway song...great mix, if you ask me! Anyway, I actually have managed to lose my CDs in the hell hole that is my room, so I looked this song up on itunes to find a copy. And I downloaded one, thinking it would be good...the ten second preview had a sexy jazz feel...however, when I got the song, I found that she (Diana Krall) hadn't even bothered to include the verse in her rendition...what does that tell us? It tells us that that is not the important part of the song. I was surprised...because, seeing as how this is a great example of a verse-refrain form, and the verse actually tells a story to introduce the refrain about her wonderful life of four leaf clovers and all that jazz, I couldn't believe the verse would be so insignificant as to leave out entirely. Now, it's true, I only knew this song because of the refrain, however, when I looked through the stead repetition of the verse chords in 2 measure blocks, and the nice step-wise motion that occurs throughout the verse, I was surprised that it would be treated so seemed pretty sweet to me! It is by far more stable than the refrain, because it incorporateds the same two measures repeating over and over to ground the listener in a steady beat and melody, and the rhythm is simple and concise.
Then I found another the way, this blog has already cost me two bucks!...and this one had the verse. And I really liked the had such a cutesy bit to it, which contrasts nicely with the jazzy verse. It sets up the song in key, story, and melody to enter into a more unstable piece with a swing in the dotted rhythms and more adventurous chords, such as the Csharpfullydim in measures 31 and 39 and the natural E in the and B in measure 47 to create the slightly off-putting G chord. There are also a number of add 6 chords, which add a slight tang to the feeling of the "wonderful" life...such as in measures 33 (Bb7 add 6) and 41 (Bb add 6). Interestingly, these add 6 chords do not appear on the words it's wonderful or it's awfully nice...instead they fall on the lines "You SHOULD care for me" and "It's what I love to see," emphasizing the singer's wishses and desires...rather than the actual truth. Does this mean that she or he is living in a fantasy world and these tangy add 6 chords are the foreshadowing of perhaps an over-exaggeration on their part? I'm not sure...but it does add interest to the piece and a slight question in my mind as to the wonderfulness of his or her life. However, it definately adds the the jazzy quality of the work and the interesting chord progressions, which turn a simple Broadway verse into a funny and rhythmically stimulating refrain!
I also really like how the bridge connecting the refrain repition plays off the verse in measures 49 and 50, with the repeated quarter notes on D that should be like the verse, yet have the swing accompaniment underneath to combine the two characters of the entire piece in two short measures!
Therefore, I believe the verse is essential to the piece and not only has Diana Krall butchered it in her self-proclaimed "best" album, which is anything but the best, but we, the people have done a disserve to this piece by merely memorizing and huming the tune of the jazzed-up, sexed-up refrain. Indeed, the verse is the rock to this beat. The verse is the more stable of the two and provides the foundation for the rest of the piece, not to mention the story to explain the "wonderful." Indeed, the piece is a VERSE-refrain's in the title...verse even comes first! So let's don't forget about it from now on. Okay? Thanks!

PS - If I were to perform this piece, and I would do a damn better job than Diana Krall, whoever she is!, then I would make sure to make my voice change charcter between the verse and the refrain to emphasize their differences, but in the two measures, 49 and 50 that connect the two, as previously discussed, I would try to create a Broadway feel again in the melody to contrast with the accompaniment. I would also add a bit of gruffness to my voice in the refrain to emphasize the sultry mood and chords!

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