The next intermediate jam will be held on Nov. 30th.
The song of the week will be '(Someday) We'll Meet Again Sweetheart' in the key of Bb.
Flatt & Scruggs - key of B (instruments tuned up a half step higher than standard)
This was the first song that Flatt and Scruggs recorded together after leaving Bill Monroe's band. (Lester Flatt on guitar and lead vocal, Earl Scruggs on banjo, Jim Shumate on fiddle, Howard Watts, a.k.a. Cedric Rainwater on upright bass, and Mac Wiseman on guitar and tenor harmony vocal.) It is one of 28 songs that Flatt & Scruggs recorded together on Mercury Records between 1948 and 1950. To listen to the complete collection of 'the Mercury Sessions' refer back to the song of the week write up for 'Why Don't You Tell Me So':
Parmley & McCoury - key of B
This is the first version of 'We'll Meet Again Sweetheart' I heard when I was just beginning to get into Bluegrass. This record (in the form of a cassette tape I bought at a Bluegrass Cardinals concert) has been in my collection since 1992, and was a big influence on my playing. From the same album, check out the following songs. This is really high quality Bluegrass well worth taking the time to listen to (over and over) and absorb.
Roll On Buddy - key of B
I'm Going Back To Old Kentucky - key of A
Swing Low, Sweet Chariot - key of B
Down The Road - key of B
I'll Drink No More Wine - key of G
Smoke Along The Track - key of A
I Hear A Sweet Voice Calling - key of E
We'll Meet Again Sweetheart uses the same progression that is used to play 'Blue Ridge Cabin Home':
The melody of We'll Meet Again Sweetheart uses all 7 notes of the Major Scale, with the lowest note being, in Nashville Numbers, the '5' below the '1' (F note in the key of Bb; D note in the key of G). and the highest note being the '4' above the '1' (Eb note in the key of Bb; C note in the key of G).
One characteristic feature of the melody of this song is how often and how long the melody lingers on the 3rd of each chord (i.e., in the key of Bb: D notes during Bb chord measures, G notes during Eb chord measures, and A notes during F chord measures. In the key of G, the corresponding notes and chords are: B notes for G chord measures, E notes for C chord measures, and F# notes for D chord measures).
Another feature of the melody - and one which severely limits the range of keys in which I can feel comfortable singing the song in - is the unusually wide intervals between some of these 3rds of each chord and the note that immediately precedes them. This occurs, for instance, at the end of measure 2 going into measure 3, where the melody abruptly descends from the 3rd of the 1 chord to the 3rd of the 4 chord, and in measure 6, where the melody abruptly ascends from the root of the 5 chord to 3rd of the 1 chord in anticipation of the upcoming chord change from the 5 back to the 1.
Playing in Bb: A Quick Review
The Bb Major Scale consists of the notes: Bb, C, D, Eb, F, G, and A.
If you wish to get really familiar with using this scale on fiddle and mandolin, I recommend as a fun exercise, transposing the melody of Turkey In The Straw
https://www.idahobluegrassassociation.org/intermediate-jam/category/turkey-in-the-straw up 3 half steps from G to Bb.
Here are the corresponding notes of the G and Bb Major Scales:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
G, A, B, C, D, E, F#
Bb,C, D, Eb ,F, G, A
The 1, 4, and 5 chords for the key of Bb are Bb, Eb, and F.
The Bb chord consists of the notes: Bb, D, and F.
The Eb chord consists of the notes: Eb, G, and Bb.
The F chord consists of the notes: F, A, and C.
The b3 and b7 ('blue') notes for the key of Bb are D and Ab.
When playing up the neck on banjo in the key of Bb (capo 3, playing as if in G), you may find it helpful to use your 10th and 15th fret markers as your primary points of reference.
Summary Of Last Night's Teaching Segment
The E Major Pentatonic Scale consists of the notes: E, F#, G#, B, and C#.
The E Minor Pentatonic Scale consists of the notes: E, G, A, B, and D.
Put these two scales together, and you end up with a good combination of notes for playing songs in the key of E, (like 'In The Pines', last night's song of the week) when a bluesy or lonesome sound is highly desirable in breaks and in licks used in your backup playing: E, F#, G, G#, A, B, C#, D.
In Nashville Numbers, and then transposed for each of the other 7 Major keys used at the jam, the notes become:
1 2 b3 3 4 5 6 b7
G A Bb B C D E F
A B C C# D E F# G
Bb C Db D Eb F G Ab
B C# D D# E F# G# A
C D Eb E F G A Bb
D E F F# G A B C
F G Ab A Bb C D Eb
Have a happy Thanksgiving!