Songs 8 and 9: The Monkees "Daydream Believer" and Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah"

I’ve been a bit preoccupied with other things so song-learning has been top of my agenda lately, but there has been some progress.

I struggled with “Mr Jones“, not with the words, as you might have expected, but with the rhythm. Singing and playing this song at the same time is really hard. So I know all the words, and I know all the music, but I can’t do both at the same time!

Last week was Song 8 and I had a go at learning The Monkees “Daydream Believer”. Another piece that I know all the words to already and so it should just be a case of committing the chords to memory, but again, rhythm got me stuck. This really isn’t a guitar song…at least, not without some major re-arrangement. So I gave up quite quickly. I don’t think I’ve even memorised the chords. Consider this dropped from the list!

And so I approached song 9. Leornard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”, which has been covered by many people in many different ways. I’m attempting a fairly standard take of it on the accoustic guitar.

I’d been simultaneously looking forward to and dreading this one. When I mentioned it to Sally she expressed some doubt about it – it sounded to her like quite a complicated piece. But I reckoned the chords weren’t too difficult (I’m sufficiently musical that I can tell a complicated chord sequence). But any song that’s really a melancholy piano piece that will have to be carefully picked on the guitar is gonna be a bit hard.

So I was delighted to find it not all that hard at all. OK, so I don’t do it justice – it’s a beautiful song and I play it clumsily – but I can play C, F, G, Em and Am, and get between them, pretty OK. I’ve still got some words to learn but most of them are there. And it’s been a real joy to do.

I’m away on holiday next week so the next song may have to wait. I’m well behind but have nearly 10 under my belt. That’s 10 songs more than I knew by heart three months ago! Yay!