After a dual piano intro jam, Donald and Warren introduce what they will be covering in this tutorial and Donald goes over how, as a songwriter, he comes up with different parts using the blues structure and expanding from there.
Here, a basic 12 bar blues structure is played with interesting harmonies added to help form the overall sound.
Donald uses the song “Peg” to showcase how to play the blues using a major sound
The guys go over using bass lines to enhance different blues chords and then perform and analyse “Josie.”
The song “On the Dunes” is played as an example of a type of blues with lots of movement.
In this last video, Donald plays and breaks down a song that ventures away from the traditional blues structure.
In this vintage video from Homespun, you'll get rare insight into the musical thinking of one of the most influential songwriters and arrangers in modern American popular music.
Steely Dan's Donald Fagen reveals how traditional twelve-bar blues and R&B structures can be the basis for unique and sophisticated compositions.
Along with jazz pianist Warren Bernhardt, Donald breaks down the keyboard arrangements to three great Steely Dan hits penned with long-time partner Walter Becker - Chain Lightning, Josie, and Peg, as well as solo works On The Dunes and Tea House On The Tracks.
Play along with Donald and Warren as they take you through the grooves, chord changes and riffs that define these unique songs. Starting with straight-ahead blues ideas, they trace the development of each piece by altering the bass lines and chord voicings and explore the harmonic and rhythmic characteristics that give each tune its singular structure.
Sharing his vast experience in popular music, Donald Fagen provides you with powerful tools to enhance your own playing, writing and arranging, giving you insights into the songs and musical ideas that inspired a generation of musicians.
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