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A.K.A. Giant Steps Reharms


Reharmonized Standards
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Click here to return to the Theory DenTritonic Reharmonization

Three tonal centers, each a major third, or Giant Step apart, are used in tritonics as the three target centers for all harmonic approaches. These harmonic approaches tend to be pretty simple, primarily V - I and II - V - I mechanisms. Although most of us, myself included, meet these kind of changes when we seek to tackle John Coltrane's Giant Steps, Rodgers and Hart use the same harmonic scheme in the bridge of Have You Met Miss Jones*. In this tune, the three tonal centers are Bb major, Gb major, and D major, in order of appearance. Each is approached by a II - V, with Gb major making a second showing before G-7 C7 returns us to the home key of F major. This shows both cycles possible in tritonics, down a major third, as the first three keys centers move, and down a minor sixth, where D major is followed by Gb major. 

The trick when attempting to reharmonize standards using tritonics is to honor the harmony/melody relationship as much as possible. Occasionally I have succeeded in keeping the original melody intact, but more often than not one or more notes have to be tweaked to fit it all together. This is called harmonic license. Since I am using Have You Met Miss Jones as an example, I will begin by showing you where I tweaked the melody for this reharm. 

 Tritonic Reharmonization 

Have You Met Miss Jones* follows an A A B A form. The only place I needed to change the melody to make everything fit was the first half of the second bar of each A section. I use the original key of F major, so the melody note C is replaced for the first two beats by the melody note Eb. On beat three, the melody note C will work fine, so I return to it in my version. Here are the changes:

A   Eb   F#7b9   |   B   D7   |   G   Bb7   |   Eb   D7b9   |   G   Bb7   |   Eb   F#7b9   |   B   |   F-7   Bb7 ||
A   Eb   F#7b9   |   B   D7   |   G   Bb7   |   Eb   D7b9   |   G   Bb7   |   Eb   |   A-7   D7   |   G   Bb7 ||
B   Eb   |   C#-7   F#7   |   B   |   A-7   D7   |   G   |   C#-7   F#7   |   B   |   F-7   Bb7 ||
A   Eb   F#7b9   |   B   D7   |   G   Bb7   |   Eb   |   A-7   D7   |   G-7   C7   |   F   |   F-7   Bb7 ||

I find this tritonic reharm particularly enjoyable. It stays with the same three keys as the original Giant Steps progression (familiar ground), until the very last three bars, which move back into the original Have You Met Miss Jones' key of F major, before using a II - V to return to Eb major on the turnaround. I also managed to get the bridge a fourth above the original cycle, which really tweaks the ear! For solos, I leave all the flat 9s off of the dominants, except for the D7 in bar four of the A sections. Have fun! [ top ]

* A recording of Have You Met Miss Jones  can be found on the CD oFF tHE tOP: standards 1  Frank Singer plays Straight, No Chaser on oFF tHE tOP: standards 1 / click here for more info

List of jazz standards with tritonic substitutionThe List of Reharmonized Standards using Tritonics [ top ]

All Of Me
All The Things You Are
Autumn Leaves
The Days of Wine and Roses
hear it: download  stream
Green Dolphin Street
Have You Met Miss Jones
Night And Day
Satin Doll
Somewhere Over The Rainbow
hear it: download  stream
Stella By Starlight
There Will Never Be Another You














Reharmonized Standards
The List ]






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