No more tinny synthesizers!
May 17, 2008 6:54 PM   Subscribe

I'm for looking non-karaoke instrumentals to sing over, preferably free. Ideally someone just playing an acoustic guitar or piano with no vocals, limited frills and high recording quality, either jazzy standards or pop. It's actually pretty hard to find all three at once on youtube and other such sites, so I thought I'd give Mefi a shot. Somebody must have a collection...any ideas?
posted by StrikeTheViol to Media & Arts (5 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
I'm not sure if this is what you want or not, but check out Depapepe. Drop me a line if you're interested in some high-quality samples of their tracks (is this against the site rule? heh.)
posted by semi at 7:46 PM on May 17, 2008

Response by poster: Cool music, but not quite what I was looking for...I'm looking for instrumentals at a singing tempo.
posted by StrikeTheViol at 8:59 PM on May 17, 2008

Best answer: Top notch instrumental music is tough to "sing over," as the instrumentalist is often carrying the melody, leaving a vocalist not a lot of room. But try these:

Tuck Andress Man In the Mirror, Europa, Over the Rainbow
Earl Klugh Living Inside Your Love, Dance With Me, Like a Lover
Stanley Jordan Autumn Leaves, Stairway to Heaven, Eleanor Rigby
Joe Pass Do Nothin' Til You Hear From Me, Don't Get Around Much Anymore, Summertime, Mahna Da Carnaval
Charlie Byrd Corcavado, Wave
Ed Bickert You'd Be So Easy To Love, Lollipops and Roses

Keith Jarrett Trio My Funny Valentine, I Loves You Porgy
Erroll Garner One Note Samba, Spring Is Here medley

Special Treat: Hoagy Carmichael singing/whistling a harmony part for Stardust, leavin' you the melody...
posted by paulsc at 9:18 PM on May 17, 2008

Well, I borked that last link. Here's Hoagy: Stardust
posted by paulsc at 9:35 PM on May 17, 2008

Best answer: If you're looking for jazz non-karaoke instrumentals, look into Jamey Aebersold Jazz Play-Along books. Each one has a book with the tune and lyrics written out in jazz chart format (for C instruments/vocals, Bb instruments, Eb instruments, and bass clef instruments) and the CD plays through each tune a certain number of times. Most of the volumes (of which there are more than 100) are played by a piano trio accompaniment (piano, bass, and drums).

I personally have 32 of the Aebersold books. Some of them you might like:
  • Volume 22 - Favorite Standards
  • Volume 23 - One Dozen Standards
  • Volume 25 - All-Time Standards
  • Volume 31 - Bossa Nova
  • Volume 32 - Ballads
  • Volume 40 - Round Midnight
  • Volume 51 - Night and Day
  • Volume 55 - Yesterdays
  • Volume 58 - Unforgettable (ballads)
  • Volume 71 - East of the Sun
  • Volume 89 - Darn That Dream
  • Volume 98 - Antonio Carlos Jobim (Bossa Nova, accompanied by guitar trio)
  • Volume 107 - It Had to Be You - 24 Standards in Singer's Keys
  • Volume 110 - When I Fall in Love
  • Volume 112 - Cole Porter
These usually run about $15 for the book/CD set. They're great to sing with, especially since each tune is usually repeated multiple times. You learn to listen for indications from the rhythm section about where you are, you learn to find your place again against the harmony, and you get to practice dropping out for a chorus or two to imagine letting the sax player have a solo.

Highly recommended.
posted by phoebus at 10:20 PM on May 17, 2008 [1 favorite]

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