A few weeks ago I had a cold that kept me down for nearly two weeks. It was so bad that I even canceled a gig! I never cancel a gig.
I was downing DayQuil and NyQuil faster than a drunk doing shots on payday. At some point, an idea broke through the fog: “‘Night and DayQuil’ would make a great song title.” Of course, this is a play on Cole Porter’s classic song, “Night and Day.”
Once I had the title, all I had to do was write the song. So I put on my work pajamas and sat down at the piano to write. If you listen closely you will hear faint echoes of Cole Porter’s tune, but mostly it’s its own thing.
A few things I especially like: The rising fourths at the beginning of the tune are bold and create an instantly recognizable musical fingerprint, but don’t sound overly pedantic. Throughout the whole song, the melody floats above the harmony like oil on water; it makes total sense to the ear, but I would pity the freshman theory student who had to figure out how the melody relates to the harmony! Most importantly, it worked. A jazz tune can be a great and interesting tune, but just not feel natural when you improvise over the changes. When we played this Thursday night, it felt like an old friend.