Just Close To You Alone – Cecil McBee & Verena McBee
A tender ballad, one of Cecil McBee's great lyrical compositions that now has a lovely lyric by his wife Verena McBee.
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- Recording: Verena McBee - U-Phoria
- Recorded on: February 23-24, 2017
- Label: verenamcbeejazz.com ()
- Concert Key: D-flat
- Vocal Range: Mezzo Soprano, A-flat3 to D-flat5
- Style: Ballad
- Vocals - Verena McBee
- Tenor Sax - Christian Contreras
- Violin - Gabe Terracciano
- Piano - Billy Test
- Bass - Zwelakhe Duma Bell Le Pere
- Drums - Jon Di Fiore
Verena has a big vocal range so she elected to sing it in Cecil's original instrumental key of D♭.
If another key would be better for you, send the key you'd like to firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll post the transposition on the website for purchase. If you're not sure which key is best, send us your range and we'll work with you to figure out the best key.
Our vocal lead sheet starts with the melody. Don Sickler: When I sent Verena proofs to look at for the vocal lead sheet, she immediately added a ♭9 to all of the B♭7 chords because that's the way she prefers it. I had already discussed and finalized the instrumental lead sheet for Close To You Alone with Cecil, and we had discussed the B♭7 notations. Obviously the only crucial ♭9 for Cecil is where the melody lands on the ♭9 in the last measure of the bridge. Cecil said that of course, if you like, all the B♭7s could be ♭9 chords, but he doesn't want you to be locked in, so he prefers the B♭7 notation for the rest of them. If Verena likes them all to be ♭9s for her arrangement, great! Also, for dramatic effect, Verena likes to put a hold on the ♭9 in the last bar of the bridge, before starting the last A section. Each A section of this beautiful AABA ballad is extended to 10 measures in length.
Lyric description: Musings on love, absence, desire; how love changes everything.
When Verena recorded it in 2017, she used the instrumental title.
born on May 19, 1935
From the time he first arrived in New York City in 1964, Cecil McBee has remained one of the most in-demand bassists in jazz, appearing on hundreds of influential recordings as well as in clubs and concert halls throughout the world. During this same span of five decades, McBee has also become a celebrated composer and teacher, leading his own ensembles and earning a distinguished professorship at the New England Conservatory in Boston, where he has taught for over 25 years. Read more...
born on February 27, 1973
Born and raised in Northern Germany, Verena McBee has been always connected to the arts. Starting at age 7 she took piano lessons over 15 years in her hometown at the Conservatory of Osnabrueck and added the flute at age 14 and joined a local theater group. Read more...