Thursday, February 14, 2013

My Romance

To Celia


Drink to me, only, with thine eyes, 

And I will pledge with mine; 
Or leave a kisse but in the cup, 
And Ile not look for wine. 
The thirst, that from the soule doth rise, 
Doth aske a drink divine: 
But might I of Jove's Nectar sup, 
I would not change for thine. 
I sent thee, late, a rosie wreath, 
Not so much honoring thee, 
As giving it a hope, that there 
It could not withered be. 
But thou thereon did'st onely breathe, 
And sent'st it back to mee: 
Since when it growes, and smells, I sweare, 
Not of it selfe, but thee.

- Robert Burns: The Poetry (1896)

Happy Valentine's Day!  It is the most romantic day of the year- the day when men desperately try to find the right expressions of love for the women that are their heart's desire.

It is a day for chocolates, cards, flowers, romantic dinners,  big teddy bears, expensive gifts, jewelry - what other ideas can we come up with guys?   If you have the right woman though,  it is really the thought that counts.   What can be better in the "thought"  category than poetry, music,  or anything created with love of her in mind?  

This is the spirit with which I arranged and recorded  My Romance, one of the most romantic songs ever composed.  I wish that I could sing like James Taylor (who has a great vocal version of this song),  but I can't.  I wish that I could write romantic  poetry like Robert Burns, but I can't.  All I can do is play hack amateur jazz,  but if it is truly the thought that counts then the message should be bursting through....

                                I Love you Celia
  
Celia Meloni Taylor

World's most beautiful woman

                                                     World's most beautiful bride


"My Romance" music by Richard Rodgers and lyrics by Lorenz Hart


My romance doesn't have to have a moon in the sky
My romance doesn't need a blue lagoon standing by
No month of May, no twinkling stars, no hideaway, no soft guitars

My romance doesn't need a castle rising in Spain
Nor a dance to a constantly surprising refrain
Wide awake I can make my most fantastic dreams come true
My romance doesn't need a thing but you

My romance doesn't need a castle rising in Spain
Nor a dance to a constantly surprising refrain
Wide awake I can make my most fantastic dreams come true
My romance doesn't need a thing but you

Geek Alert


The arrangement and pacing for My Romance was inspired by the excellent version recorded by Brad Mehldau on his Introducing Brad Mehldau album. I got some good ideas for the intro and exit solo from Ed. He suggested using a trick from Gershwin, which is to employ lush major chords following a diminished progression (F-Ab-B-D in this case). I also took a piece of a jazz etude transcription from him for a nice sound over the final G7b9 chord in the opening solo. I had some versions of this with more runs and notes, but it didn't sound as tasteful or romantic to me, so I went with the less-is-more approach.