Sunday, December 5, 2010

Attention Southern Denizens!

Just saw this ad for what looks like an intriguing show next week: Big Star's Third, (a/k/a "Sister Lovers")done live with an orchestra, and Who's Who of Southern Pop Royalty. Check this out:
We (at this rehearsal, “we” includes Mitch Easter, Jeff Crawford, Charles Cleaver, and Matt McMichaels) are listening to and learning “Big Black Car.” On the second prechorus, the acoustic guitar (presumably played by Alex) gets ahead of the progression by a bar, and lands on the D minor while the rest of the instruments are on the D major–then the acoustic seemingly rectifies this “mistake” by glancing off the side of an F# note and joining everyone on the next bar on the D minor. Now, this was before cut-and-paste computer flub-fixing, but Ardent, a top-notch facility, had ways and means to correct things like this, yet it stayed that way. Now, a “major/minor” (aug. 9) chord wasn’t unheard of in the jazz vocabulary of Alex’s childhood home. And the vocal melody also adapts to this major-minor mishmash.

Yet the first prechorus stays on track: A, A7, D maj, D min. And the demo (from the boxed set) has two matched prechoruses.

But the flavor of this “nothing can hurt me” moment has always seemed right, somehow; I’d never questioned it before.

So I think we are going to play the “mistake” (acoustic on Dm and piano and electric guitar on D major). Or maybe we’ll mix it up, alternating nights. Not sure yet. Better yet, maybe we’ll make our own mistakes, in just the right–or wrong–places.

Only the first blog post is credited, to Chris Stamey of The dB's, but I think he's writing all of them, and it's fascinating (if you are, umm, a geek like me) to get a look at this coming together.

We're looking here at Mike Mills, Mitch Easter, Jody Stephens, Stamey (natch), and a slew of other rock and orchestral musicians working to bring this thing to light. I think it looks amazing, but impossible for me. Someone want to go & report?