I’m a sucker for the IV minor chord. It’s just like a IV chord, only with a flattened six that makes a songwriter sound all, like, meaningful and stuff.
I love it too much, in fact, and had to impose an embargo on myself at one stage, until I could be sure I was using the IV minor responsibly again, as the Skyliners did in ‘Since I Don’t Have You’: the song has a straightforward doo-wop progression, except instead of I-vi-IV-V, the chords go I-vi-IVminor-V. One little semitone can make a big difference:
Mmmm, that’s good fluff. But it takes a surprising number of people to produce such fluff. Who wrote the song? According to the label on the original 45, the song was written by “J. Rock- The Skyliners”. ASCAP agrees:
BEAUMONT JAMES L
LESTER WALTER P JR
ROCK JOSEPH V
TAYLOR JOHN H
VERSCHAREN JOSEPH W
VOGEL JANET F
That’s J. Rock, plus the Skyliners all right.
But according to Jay Warner, in his “American singing groups: a history from 1940s to today“, Joe Rock wrote the lyric in his car while between stoplights, and Jimmy Beaumont supplied the music the next night. The group recorded an a capella demo, and Janet Vogel, believing recording had ceased, “kept riffing at the end, weaving up to an incredible high C finale”.
So maybe the rest of the group got writing credit for supplying their own vocal parts? In any case, it seems I should thank lead singer Jimmy Beaumont for the IV minor chord, and otherwise I have no problem with Warner’s account – except that’s a C sharp on the recording. Go Janet!
What’s that? You’d like to see the Skyliners doing the number on Dick Clark’s show, dressed in wild west outfits and walking awkwardly down a flight of stairs? Oh, alright.