TL;DR (rightfully so ), here’s the recording:
Sight-Reading Challenge: Autumn Leaves Walking Bass (phone recording)
(Way too long of a) Backstory:
I signed up for this event as a performer, got my setlist ready and a guest vocalist confirmed but work stepped in. With no time to practice, I had to pull out of the roster but being in the audience and just hang out with such a cool bunch of people, still makes it absolutely worth it! Saturday evening comes, big screen connected to the laptop, headphones ready, click the link to join the event…technical difficulties. Fast forward 1h45m, I finally manage to reboot the system and join the event, just in time to hear amazing performances from CT and LievenDV (listen to the whole concert here).
Somewhere in the chat, I see an invitation from adi_mrok to join with a last minute performance. Me, being a classic definition of a yes-man when it comes to challenges, I agree to it before even thinking what this means. I open Justin’s website, search through the song list, spot https://www.justinguitar.com/guitar-lessons/autumn-leaves-walking-bass-ja-525 and decide that a sight-reading challenge of a jazz standard (almost) everybody heard before would be the most appropriate closure of the event.
And here comes my biggest failure of the night. Instead of downloading a Guitar Pro file with the transcription, I automatically downloaded the PDF. This meant that instead of pressing play on Guitar Pro, I had to scroll through the PDF file while playing. As you can imagine (or even worse, as you might have experienced last night!), it did not go down well. I quickly realised that and ended the performance.
I really felt bad for Brian who organised this open mic with a special cause, and also for all other performers and audience members. Had I just played one of songs I know or downloaded the Guitar Pro file, I would provide a minute or two of musical background while people would be “leaving the venue” after another successful event. I have to admit, the entire fiasco left a bit of a sour taste in my mouth.
Today, I woke up to a message from a vocalist I collaborated with before. It read “Would you be able to accompany me on a few songs in 2 weeks if I send you the charts later today?”
Of course I instantly typed yes but just before I sent it, I decided I need to test myself first. I opened Guitar Pro, loaded the Autumn Leaves file, plugged my guitar into the amp, put a phone in front of it, pressed record, pressed play in Guitar Pro and here’s how the closure of the 007 open mic should have sounded yesterday.
While it is far from perfect, I think I passed my test. I will be performing in a couple of weeks!
Thank you for listening. Criticism is always welcome.