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Original recording by Clifton was in the key of...

Hey Rick...

Thanks for the email and kind words in your post.

The original recording that Clifton did was also in the key of G. Aldus Roger was the next person to record that song as far as I know. His version is DEFINITELY based on Clifton's version...he plays it about as close as you can get it to Clifton on a Cajun box. Of course his backup sounds completely different but the actual notes he plays are remarkably similar to Clifton.

Aldus does about 6 different parts just like the Clifton version. Most people I hear today usually play something like "Les flemmes d'enfer" and then do the other part where you hold out the G7 chord. Steve Riley put a version out kind of like that; but many of the juicy original licks are not there. For anyone interested in that tune I recommend listening to Clifton and Aldus FIRST before any of the other version...then make Your Own Version.

Another interesting observation--CLifton put out a French version of "I can't stop loving you" (Don Gibson song also covered by Ray Charles and many others). Clifton's version was in a 3/4 waltz time, though. What I noticed is that the tune of the chorus is the same as the "cajun" waltz "Marie!" I think Aldus also was influenced this waltz version of Clifton and in turn he later recorded "Marie." Anyone curious about this should try singing the chorus of "I can't stop..." in place of one of the French verses of Marie; it works!

Which key depends on which accordion.

On a piano accordion, G would be a very likely key that would be used. Usually in zydeco, when using a piano accordion, they tend to stick to the "easy" keys like G, F.

This song doesn't seem like it would really be at its best on a single row, but I suspect it would fit better on the pull key rather than the push. I can't say that I have tried it on a single row, however.

In my opinion, this is one of those songs that really stands out best on a triple row, which is where I play it. On a triple row, it would be played in the third position of the middle and outer rows. On an F/Bb/Eb triple row, this is Eb. You could also do it on the inner and center rows, in the key of Ab. But Eb works better for me.


Jamey Hall's most excellent Cajun Accordion Music Theory

Brett's all new Cajun Accordion Music Theory for all keys!

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