Archive for November, 2010

November-30-2010
Filed Under (Acoustic Humor)

João Gilberto and Snoop Dogg make an unlikely pairing. The former, a 79 year old Brazilian guitarist and singer, invented the Bossa Nova style during the late ‘50s. The latter, well.. you know who he is.

Gilberto, along with legendary saxophonist Stan Getz, made an album in the style – entitled Getz/Gilberto – which won the 1965 Grammy for Album of the Year (the same year The Beatles won Best New Artist). The Girl from Ipanema, a track on Getz/Gilberto, won Record of the Year.

Snoop Dogg was nominated for the 2009 Grammy for Best Rap Song and Best Rap Solo Performance for his song Sexual Eruption, (radio edited to Sensual Seduction). The song actually features very little rapping, with Snoop choosing instead to sing an auto-tuned melody. The subject matter is pretty self-explanatory.

Here the two get together to make a Bossa Nova version of Sensual Seduction (perhaps the original title is too risqué for YouTube). Standing offer to AV readers: submit a video of an auto-tuned performance of The Girl from Ipanema and see it featured on the homepage. Bonus points if you rap the last verse.


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November-25-2010
Filed Under (Uncategorized)

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November-23-2010
Filed Under (Acoustic Covers)

We at The Acoustic Version are on a perpetual mission to unearth interesting, innovative, and just plain awesome acoustic versions of songs. We’ve featured some no-brainers – like Dave Grohl’s My Hero – and some less likely acoustic adaptations – like Led Zeppelin’s (disputed) Black Dog. But there are a few Holy Grails which we hold out hope – however meager – will be tackled by some brave, talented, souls with nimble fingers, an excess of free time, and a masochistic streak. Examples include Yes’ I’ve Seen All Good People, Phish’s Foam, and the 2nd Movement of Beethoven’s 7th Symphony. (Are any of these a part of your acoustic repertoire? How long you gonna hold out on us?) Right at the top of the list is Frank Zappa’s brilliant, groovin’ piece, Peaches en Regalia.

Peaches is instrumental, but Zappa had plenty to say. Check out his memoir, The Real Frank Zappa Book, for a window into the workings of a strange and creative mind. Vanity Fair called it “an autobiography of mostly hilarious stories…fireside war tales from the big bad days of the rockin’ sixties…”. This is not to be confused with The Real Book, which, though it can refer to any number of compilations of jazz lead sheets, most commonly refers to a specific underground book self-published by students at Berklee during the 1970s (and which included some original compositions by the authors and their friends). It’s the latter, referenced below, which provides rare notation for this song.
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November-19-2010
Filed Under (Acoustic Covers)

Night in Tunisia began turning heads immediately after Dizzy Gillespie, the great jazz trumpeter, composed it in 1942. An instant standard, it has been covered countless times in almost as many styles, ranging from Victor Wooten’s tap- and slap-bass to Ella Fitzgerald’s sultry storytelling to Bobby McFerrin’s impossibly virtuosic vocal interpretation. Well, add classical fingerstyle to the list, because here is the legendary Roland Dyens performing his strikingly original and extraordinarily difficult arrangement for acoustic guitar.

The song is especially appropriate for Dyens, a French-speaking native of Tunisia. The North-African nation, which incorporated fairly sizable populations of French and Italian colonists after declaring bankruptcy in 1869, was compelled to accept French protectorate status in 1881 and didn’t earn back its independence until 1956, a year after Dyens’ birth.
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November-16-2010
Filed Under (Acoustic Originals)

A large part of Weezer‘s appeal through the ‘90s and into the aughts was Rivers Cuomo‘s refusal to, well, grow up. His angst-ridden ballads of love lost – and love unrequited (like Pink Triangle) – spoke to a generation of teens who recognized themselves in him (or wanted to, anyway). Yet, despite that familiar-sounding profile, the level of quality Rivers achieved with his music set him apart from most whiners of his generation.

This can be attributed, at least in part, to an approach to music which was fundamentally different than that of other “Emo” songwriters, some of whom were characterized by, it must be admitted, an inordinate amount of self-indulgence and self-pity, and a concurrent neglect of musical tradition. After all, if your experience is so unique, so important, and so true, what need do you have for those who came before you?
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