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Analysis of “You Took Advantage Of Me”

Analysis of the jazz standard "You Took Advantage Of Me"
Let’s have a look at the chart as though it was just a conventional standard. It’s a 32 bar sequence AABA in E flat. It doesn’t really modulate much anywhere else - it might go to C minor a bit in the middle 8. C minor is the relative minor of E (flat) major - more or less the same key signature and so, in some sense, the modulation is fairly minimal. Let’s look at the chords first of all. The tune goes … and the first chord is E flat major7, using our voicings, use a 6/9 voicing but I’ve put in a thickening note.
The second chord is E diminished, or E diminished7, and on the music that I’ve transcribed for you I’ve got E diminished in root position. Of course, you can equally well play inversions of it if you find that easier. The next chord in F minor7, then F sharp diminished or diminished7 in root position, then G minor7 - what is it - the third inversion, F sharp, F minor, B flat7 - the thirteenth - and then E flat major7 - 6/9 - E flat7, the standard ninth and I’ve put in a thickening note, A flat major7, the standard third inversion, D flat 7 which is the thirteenth shape and then E flat major7, B flat, E flat.
If this wasn’t a question of vamping, then the tune would go - if I play 2 chords to the bar …
etc. But I am vamping so the left hand goes the root E flat, then the root E for the E diminished, then F, F sharp. So you get this for the A section …
approximately. I hope you’ve got to the stage now where you don’t expect me to play exactly what I’ve written for you, because I can’t remember it and one of the problems with playing stride piano, or vamping, is I need to look at the keyboard, otherwise I miss the roots if I look at the music. It’s a little bit of a struggle. Stride piano isn’t really my thing, but I want to try and give you an idea, at least, of the basic ingredients.
That’s the A section. The B section - when we get to the second time bar - it goes E flat major7 and then a new chord G+7. What’s G+7? Well, actually I don’t have to play G+7, I could just play G7 and I’ve got the thirteenth shape here. But G+7 - another way of saying it is G7 with a sharpened fifth. Let’s look at that. Take C7, take the fifth and sharpen it - that’s the sound that you get - augmented sound. The scale that goes with it not an 8 note scale, but a 7 note
scale consisting purely of whole tones: tone, tone, tone, tone, tone, tone. So there’s only 7 notes to get you up to the octave. If we were to play it in voiced position - there isn’t a fifth in the ninth version but we could put in the sharpened fifth.
Then the thirteenth - if we take the thirteenth and we flatten it then that’s the same thing as having a sharpened fifth. So that’s another voicing for C7 with a sharpened fifth.
In our case we’ve got G+7 and the scale that goes with it is tone, tone, tone … In fact, there’s really only 2 scales for a whole tone, because you have tone, tone, tone, tone, tone, tone starting on C and you do the same thing starting on C sharp or D flat.
Then when you start on D it’s just a mode of the very first scale. There’s really only 2 whole tone scales.
The point about having the sharpened fifth in there - the augmented sound - is that it’s got E flat in it. It’s a very E flat centred piece because you couldn’t really get very far away from E flat. But at least it takes us to C minor and then we get to the middle 8. The middle 8 goes C minor (first inversion), D7 (the ninth), G+7, C7 (the ninth), F7 (the ninth), B flat7 (the thirteenth), E flat major7 and so on. The middle section goes like this …
then we’re back to the A section.
Let’s have a go now at trying to play this in time.

Analysing the structure of the jazz standard “You Took Advantage Of Me”.

You can download the chart for “You Took Advantage Of Me” in PDF format at the bottom of this step.

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