Blog # 7
George and Ira Gershwin, “S Wonderful!” (p.94) Track 1.91
In the musician’s guide anthology that came with our text books there is a score of “S Wonderful!” by George Gershwin and lyrics by Ira Gershwin. I was told that the recording that we have is horrible, but it sounds fine to me because I don’t really have much background with jazz and vocal music.
It has a four measure introduction and 2 major sections that each repeat. The first section is from measures five till twenty-eight, and the second section is from measures twenty-nine till sixty. These sections have clearly marked beginnings and endings because of the repeat signs. The second section is the refrain. This song is a verse-refrain form. The refrain repeats and it stands out clearly. “’S Wonderful, ‘Smarvelous, You should care for me!” is the refrain that lasts for eight measures. There is also another eight measure phrase that has the same melody as the refrain but different lyrics. The male and female vocalists switch every eight measures. In the first section is more contemplative sounding and the motives last two measures long. First the male vocalist sings and then it repeats the same melody and harmony but the female vocalist sings different lyrics. There are lots of flatted accidentals added verses more naturals and sharps added in for the second section. I feel like the second section feels more harmonic stable and feels more up beat because of the accompaniment and jazziness. The first section the male sings first and then the second time the female sings, rather in the second section they alternate and take turns and the second time during the repeat they switch.
There are c-sharp diminished chords that have a forward motion going to the B-flat seven (add six) chord in the refrain that contribute to the jazziness feeling of this song. Those chords are played on the popular part “S marvelous, you should care for me.”
The E-natural in measure forty-seven sounds extremely held out and exaggerated. He really emphasizes it and because it’s an accidental it sticks out even more. It’s a g major chord that harmonizes the e-natural, which would be a major three chord.
Overall I really enjoyed this piece. Usually I hate vocal music but this piece is cute and the jazz is enjoyable and pleasant to listen to. And I can understand the lyrics since it’s in English!