July 26, 2012 11:43 PM   Subscribe

I'm looking to compile a collection of a certain kind of codas or outros or tags. Like, when the song is over, and the musician or band has to tie things up into a neat package, they may play something like this classic. (OK, maybe that wasn't so neat.) I'm not just looking for the well-trodden, but also for someone's unique stamp on the well-trodden. The ironic or earnest. Rock, jazz, classical — any genre!

Any genre! If you have an example of a "CLASSIC!" way to end Bhangra, Gamelan, Gurage, Reggae, Thrash, Chinese Folk, you name it, I wanna hear the BIG ENDING! What makes it such a classic for that genre?

PERSNICKETY WARNING: Please edit YouTube links to cut right to the chase by appending "&t=_m_s" to the URL — the blanks are filled in with the time in minutes and seconds where you want to video to jump to when started.
posted by not_on_display to Media & Arts (11 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: The end of Al Jolson's Good Evening, Friends from the opening theme of his radio program got quite a bit of traction. Example. Another example.
posted by Balonious Assault at 12:53 AM on July 27, 2012 [1 favorite]

My favourite outro is at the end of Wire by Strawpeople. There's no video so no youtube, but the song is here and the outro starts at 3 min 44 sec.

I'm not totally sure if this is the kind of thing you're looking for. Strawpeople were a fairly mellow electronica duo that didn't perform live, so don't have quite the same big ending/wrap up the song for the audience thing going on. But I always felt this was a really mellow and interesting way to ease out of that song.
posted by shelleycat at 1:39 AM on July 27, 2012

I'd nominate Derek & The Dominoes' Layla, but the length almost qualifies it as a separate piece.
posted by tommasz at 5:02 AM on July 27, 2012 [1 favorite]

There's a whole sort of subgenre of these where the song starts slow and builds, and then the coda is a reprise of the slow bit from the beginning.

Bohemian Rhapsody and Stairway to Heaven are two of the classic examples.
posted by nebulawindphone at 7:47 AM on July 27, 2012

The end of Baba O'Reily by The Who. It's not complex, but it just keeps building along the same theme.

I'm a big U2 fan, and they're not known for their outros, but the one I'd point to is With or Without You, actually because its not big. Its a quiet but melodic 4 chords that repeat with the fade. In the context of the 80's, its really unusual, in that there's still a build, but it doesn't blow the speakers out. During the Joshua Tree tour they actual did a proper outro solo, with a nice vocal coda as well.
posted by dry white toast at 7:52 AM on July 27, 2012

Another subgenre, from the world of jam bands: songs that just drift out on a quiet spacey closing jam — no Epic Last Chord, no last repeat of the verse or chorus, etc., just pleasant noodling tailing off into silence.

The famous(-if-you're-into-that-sort-of-thing) "epilogue" to Truckin' on the Grateful Dead's Europe '72 album falls into this category. (Weirdly, given all the tape-sharing, it's impossible to find the actual Europe '72 version of this online. The whole show it's from has been pulled from and other sites. Oh well.)

Or for Phish, there's The Squirming Coil, which ends in a jam from which the instruments drop out one by one until there's just solo piano left: here's how it begins and and here's how it ends.

You could think of that Layla outro as sort of the granddaddy of all these.
posted by nebulawindphone at 8:02 AM on July 27, 2012

Also, this might be outside what you're looking for, but there's a subgenre of outros on albums that set up the next track. Pink Floyd did that a great deal (on Dark Side of the Moon and Wish You Were Here), and a good recent example is Arcade Fire. Where at least a hanging open note from one of their plethora of instruments drags into the next track. A couple of case studies:

The transition from Haiti to Rebellion (Lies) on Funeral.
The Suburbs to Ready to Start on The Suburbs. The Suburbs actually has a few of those, but this gives you the idea.

Final note on that: Arcade Fire's signature live moment is when they fade out of Power Out and into Rebellion (Lies) by dissolving the song into pretty much utter cacophony, but somewhere in there the bass line from Rebellion starts and pulls everything back into cohesion. I've seen it a few times and it's spine-tingling. Here's one example.
posted by dry white toast at 8:10 AM on July 27, 2012

Pat Metheny Group's San Lorenzo. The studio version and the live version from the Travels album.

On Stevie Wonder's album Music of My Mind, the song Superwoman seamlessly moves into Where Were You When I Needed You. The two songs are actually considered to be two parts of an overall song about/speaking to "Mary".
posted by fuse theorem at 10:02 AM on July 27, 2012

Best answer: For pop music, here's the Truck Driver's Gear Change web site. It contains numerous examples. Here's one. (Blatant shift at 0:20.)
posted by ignignokt at 1:00 PM on July 27, 2012

Best answer: From jazz: the Basie Ending, which became something of a big band cliché.
posted by misteraitch at 1:12 PM on July 27, 2012 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks Balonious Assault and misteraitch, those are exactly the types of things I'm looking for. ignignokt, too, is on the right track. I'm looking for things that are variations on certain conventions. Like at the end of a song, where someone will croon, "And that ain't aaaaaalll!"
posted by not_on_display at 3:32 PM on July 27, 2012

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