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Harmonica Lessons: "This Masquerade"

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[MUSIC]
Hey,
everybody.
We're gonna do a very, very famous song
called This Masquerade by Leon Russell.
Now Leon Russell is a kinda unusual
character in American pop music cuz he
crosses over between a whole bunch of
different boundaries, which are unusual.
I even heard that he played piano for
Frank Sinatra at one point.
So this is a multi-faceted guy.
And this tune, I'm gonna do it in D minor,
so everybody could play it in
third position on their C harps.
This way, even though I think the original
key is something else, F minor, G minor?
We can all play it in third
position on a C harp.
This tune is, in a certain way,
like a standard jazz ballad,
where it's in one key.
And then it goes into another key for
the bridge.
It goes into the key of the flat sixth.
So from D minor,
[MUSIC]
yeah.
On the harmonica.
[MUSIC]
It's very
bluesy.
Matter of fact George Benson
had the big hit with it and
he soloed over one chord on it.
We're gonna solo over the changes.
And then it goes,
[MUSIC]
goes down and half-steps to C Minor.
[MUSIC]
But the C minor is the two of
the two-five-one of the B-flat.
[MUSIC]
Two, two, five, one.
So B flat on the C harp
is that 11th position,
is the third hole draw
bent down a half step.
[MUSIC]
So now we're in that key.
[MUSIC]
This is just a regular special 20 out of
the box that I adjusted some
of the reed clearances on.
[MUSIC]
So to play the melody, we need that E
flat, which is the fourth hole over blow.
[MUSIC]
And
then it does
something tricky.
[MUSIC]
It goes to the two,
five, one of the key,
a half step above.
So, in other words,
[MUSIC]
whoops, I dropped my harmonica,
that's a bad thing to do.
So from B-flat it goes into A.
So we're
[MUSIC]
and that D becomes
the fourth of A.
[MUSIC]
Now we're
in A major.
[MUSIC]
And then we hit C,
and then A, rather E.
[MUSIC]
See it's a tricky way of
modulating back to D minor.
So we're in B flat.
[MUSIC]
To A major.
[MUSIC]
And from A major we go to A7,
which is the five chord of D minor.
So there's a lot of jazz
type theory in this tune,
even though it was kind
of a pop crossover hit.
It follows that jazz formula of the bridge
going into a related key somehow.
And then into a third key.
Or rather in second key.
It's sort of a two-key bridge.
I don't know the formal word for it, but
there's a lot of tunes in jazz like that.
Misty is like that.
All sorts of jazz tunes go
into one key on the bridge and
then go into another key that
transitions back to the original key.
Except that the difference in
this tune is that the A section,
the D minor part does not repeat.
[SOUND] The first time it's not AABA,
it's just ABA,
B being the bridge in two keys,
and then it goes back.
[MUSIC]
And
the lyrics of this song
are really great.
You can look it up online.
It's about people not really being
who they are in relationships.
We're lost in this masquerade.
So now I'm gonna play
it along with my track.
And hope that you enjoy the tune and that
you're gonna wanna learn how to play it.
[MUSIC]
C.
[MUSIC]
That's
three draw.
[MUSIC]
Without a bend.
[MUSIC]
I'll take
it up an octave.
[MUSIC]
Now I'll
play over the
changes.
[MUSIC]
You could play blues licks
in third position.
[MUSIC]
See,
we're in
B flat
now.
[MUSIC]
Then we're in A.
[MUSIC]
Now
a C chord.
Now an E chord.
Now an A chord.
[MUSIC]
Some double
stops
work.
[MUSIC]
Octaves.
[MUSIC]
And here's the one chord vamp.
[MUSIC]
Sometimes
you can repeat one lick,
audiences like it.
[MUSIC]
Had the tonic runs.
[MUSIC]
Bee-bop licks.
[MUSIC]
Ended on
the ninth.
Lots of ideas in there for you.
Good luck.
[MUSIC]