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How High the Moon is a jazz standard with lyrics by Nancy Hamilton and music by Morgan Lewis. It was first featured in the 1940 Broadway revue Two for the Show, where it was sung by Alfred Drake and Frances Comstock.
In "Two for the Show", this was a rare serious moment in an otherwise humorous revue. The song was sung, in a slow fox trot tempo, by a group of evening-dressed people walking along a London street. At the end, they all looked at the sky, and cowered, obviously terrified: quick curtain. It was 1940, and the time of the London blitz: a clear night meant "bomber's moon".
The earliest recorded hit version was by Benny Goodman & His Orchestra. It was recorded February 7, 1940 and released by Columbia Records as catalog number 35391, with the flip side "Fable of the Rose". The Les Paul Trio recorded a version released as V-Disc 540B with a spoken introduction which was issued in November, 1945 by the U.S. War Department. In 1948, bandleader Stan Kenton enjoyed some success with his version of the tune. The recording, with a vocal by June Christy, was released by Capitol Records as catalog number 911 (with the flip side "Willow, Weep for Me") and 15117(with the flip side "Interlude"). It reached the Billboard magazine Best Seller chart on July 9, 1948, its only week on the chart, at #27.
The song uses a descending chord progression in which the tonic of the moment turns minor to become the II of the chord a whole step below it.
Main Song Download(s)
The main downloads for this Song.
How Insensitive - Play-along Track Leadsheet
Leadsheet to premium play-along track, How Insensitive.
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How High the Moon - Premium Play-along Track, Key of G
Play-along track for jazz standard How High the Moon in the key of G.
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How High the Moon - Play-along with Guitar
Play-along tracks with the guitar taking the melody and solos.
Song Road Map
Tips and tricks for remembering a song.
A Road Map Through Song
Remembering songs is all about the form and harmonic content and movement with taking in the similarities between songs. And, just like a road map they're landmarks that will trigger memories of how to get through various sections, changes or parts of a song.
This section of a song's page presents some tips on how I try and remember a particular song.
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Related Song Files, Resources and Assets
Related Assets for How High the Moon at this time.
Ukulele Fingerboard Chart for C Tuning, Low or High G
Ukulele Fingerboard Chart for C Tuning, Low or High G.
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Open Position Flash Cards for Ukulele C Tuning
Standard music notation flash chards for learning the notes in open position for C tuning.
Movable 7th Chords for Ukulele Chord Chart - C Tuning
A handy dandy single sheet chart showing the each voicing of the four, seventh chords Big Six seventh chord voicings.
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Related Lessons for How High the Moon at this time.
Related Song Books
Related Books for How High the Moon at this time.
Related Lesson Series
Related Lessons Series for How High the Moon at this time.
Types of Chords Available on Ukulele
The types of chords possible on ukulele include open position chords, movable form chords, 4-part chords, a.k.a. jazz chords and free from chords.
Open Position Chords
These are the basic first chords most players learn. There're the chords in the first one, two, three and fours frets of the ukulele and include at least one open string.
Basic Movable Form Chords
Sometimes called "barre" chords, these chords are the basic open position chords that venture beyond the third fret and do not include open strings.
4-part Contemporary Chords, a.k.a. Jazz Chords
Beyond basic open position chords and basic movable form chords these are the core set of 4-part chords that are used to build ALL your contemporary, more advanced chords. Commonly called "Jazz" chords these are the chords where the knowing how principles of how chords are constructed and your knowledge of the names of the notes of the ukulele fingerboard offer the most benefit to using and expanding your chord vocabulary. From these core chords you can create all those crazy named chords such as: 9#11, 7#5-9, 13b5, 7+9 - and on the fly as needed.
Free Form Chords
Free Form chords are those chords that do not fall into one of the above categories. They typically don't show up in chord dictionaries or software programs. You can create these chords when you know the notes of the ukulele fingerboard, know how chords are constructed and know the names of the notes the chord and the intervals that make up the chord.
Traditional and Contemporary Triads
Somewhere in the mix of the above four chord categories, triads should be explored. Triads are the foundation of most chords. They are amazing versatile chords that can be used harmonically as chords or melodically in solos. The student and the type of music determines
A triad is a three note chord. In traditional chord theory there are four traditional triad chord types: major, minor, diminished and augmented. And four contemporary triad chord types: sus2, sus4, add2 and add9.
Triads can be used harmonically, as chords and melodically, as single notes. Triads are a great way to get started with creating melodic solos and improvising.
In my personal and teaching experience triads are the first real challenging chords after the basic open position chords and movable basic chords. I personally found them even harder that the 4-part "jazz" chords.
Common Chord Progressions and Remembering Songs
Learning the similarities between chord progressions and songs helps you remember a lot of songs. There's a lot more in common between songs than one might think.
This series of lessons explores common chord progressions.
Remembering songs is lot like remembering the directions for a road trip. There are the turn-by-turn directions, road maps, signs and landmarks. Turn here, turn there, remember this and remember that landmark. With a songs it's the chords, the harmonic cells and form of the song.
With a few music tools and an understanding of the principles of how chords and chords progressions work. You can start unraveling what's going on in a song. There's a lot more in common between songs than you might think. Each song has it's own direction, signs and landmarks.
Basic Ukulele Chords Charts
Not so much a series - but the basic chords ALL ukulele players should know.
Basic Ukulele Chords Charts - As much as I preach the need to not have to rely on chords charts. When you're first learning the ukulele and chords these charts are a real help - just not long a term alternative to actually knowng your chords, where they come from and how to create them when needed.
Jazz Standard Chord Progressions
These are the chord progressions, extracted from my book Exploring Jazz Chords on Ukulele for use with on-line and private students.
Modular Phonetic Rhythm by Chuck Anderson
Modular Phonetic Rhythm represents a significant advance in the teaching and application of rhythm. Eliminating many inefficient aspects of rhythm education, Modular Phonetic Rhythm streamlines the traditional educational approach, resulting in a reflexive reaction to rhythm.
Related Songs for How High the Moon at this time.
Related Videos for How High the Moon.
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