This Stompin at the Savoy was the other tune that Jerry Newman
recorded at the same jam session as Charlie Christians ne plus ultra,
Topsy. Had it not been for the existence of Topsy (aka
Swing to Bop), this may well have turned out to be CCs most highly
Charles is a master at embellishing the themerhythmically and
harmony, melody, dynamics. Joe Guy takes the first solo chorus
followed by Kenny Kersey for two choruses, then Charles.
First CC Solo
CC leads-in his first solo very nicely [love the passage at mm 9-12] and is in full stride
by the time he hits the first bridge.
On the bridge E7, he sounds like hes going
to go into the same phrases he used on the bridge Eb7
on his last chorus on Topsy but then unexpectedly takes a different direction.
At mm 14-15 and again at 29-30, goes to lower frets instead of staying in the same hand
position as would most other guitarists.
Plays his famous flat-3rd / 6th double-stops at mm 27; then again at mm 32 with a
grand flourish not heard on any of his other recordings.
The spacing of the figures on mm 9-14 is reminiscent of the spacing on mm 26-32 on
CCs first Topsy chorus.
Good use of silence before hitting the bridge on the first beat; also good pacing
(holding the B-natural) at the start of the
Note the sharp-5th (F) at the bridge A7.
Bars 30-31 finds the drop to the lower frets once more.
Flat-3rd / 6th double-stops again at mm 5 and a series of Bbs
on alternating strings from mm 8 thru 11.
Then theres that clever open low-E string
on the bridge E7 that startles the listener upon
first hearing. Since the more recent releases of other live versions, we now know it
was a favorite device of Charles on Stompin
he lets it ring
out for a measure or more while he solos over it.
Alternating strings again on mm 26-28this time its sweeping Dbs.
Then its Joe Guy again, for three choruses, between Charles two solos.
Second CC Solo
Ostensibly, CC opens his second solo by playing eight bars of laid-back
riffsbut theyre not nearly as simple as they may seem on first
hearing. Youll need more than a few practice runs before you can get them just
The two flat-5ths (Fb) at mm 11 signal the end of
the laid-back-ness. On the next measure he starts a bridge-like run that serves as a
warm-up before laying into the bridge itself.
Another sound of surprise at mm 23: an arpeggio played a half-step
higher than what the harmony calls for before briefly resolving with the 9th of the A7; then he goes on down another half-step to the Ab7.
The first four bars consist of the drawn-out 9-6-3-6 most commonly found on the guitar
intro to AC-DC Current. This one has a flat-nine in the third measure.
A lilting, melodic bridge.
Sweeping Dbs again at mm 27-30, an octave higher
than on the 3rd chorus of the first solo.
On mm 9-11, the rhythmic emphasis of the repeated figures alternately switches from the
downbeat to the upbeat five times, with alternately inserted sharp-5ths and 6ths,
before CC tops out the phrase.
The solo changes on the bridge follow the contours of the actual melody / harmony of
Joe Guy takes the final chorus with chordal urging from Charles most of the way.