Thursday, June 15, 2006

Smoke on the Water

Alternating between jazz and non-jazz tunes, here is the last song I've recorded, this time Deep Purple's ever--popular rock classic Smoke on the Water.

When I started thinking about making a cover of this song, the first question that came to my mind was wheter I should use the original riff or not. Being probably the most instantly recognisable riff in the history of rock guitar (along with, among others, AC/DC's "Highway to Hell", Free's "All Right Now" or Survivor's "Eye of the Tiger"), trying to play this song without its main riff is not only difficult but also a bit nonsense. On the other hand, the riff is so characteristic that if you include it without altering it somehow, it is hard to make a really original cover and avoid creating a mere verbatim copy of the original one, at least in its rhythm part (which in this case is the most important one). What I finally decided to do was to take the main riff, add a bit of swing to it and not only use it for the rhythm brigdes, but all throughout the song. You know what they say: if you cannot beat your enemy...

The riff gives a lot of freedom to improvise over it (in this case G minor and G blues scales are used), and using the typical head-solo-head structure we have a jazzy rendition of this classical hard rock anthem (which more than Smoke on the Water itself, it can be considered just an improvisation over its trademark riff, but well, it is a cover version after all...).

Although I admire Ritchie Blackmore as a guitar player, the solo is not played in his style, but rather this time in my own style (i.e. something like Clapton meets Healey meets Metheny meets Montgomery meets Nelson...).

You can download the song here.

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