"Have You Met Miss Jones" by Rodgers & Hart has one of the most maddening bridge sections of any tune in the "American songbook."
The song is a straightforward A-A-B-A form of 32 bars. The A section couldn't be more conventional, in the key of F concert, the A section has one chord per bar, all in that same key center. To start with this tune, you can use notes from the F concert major scale throughout the A sections. The changes are:
I | vi | ii | V | iii | vi | ii | V |
There are thousands of pop, jazz and classical songs that follow a progression very similar to that. So it seems pretty easy. Until ...
Until you hit that bridge. The bridge goes all over the place, completely disconnected from the F key center. Many a good player has suffered a train wreck here. To get through the bridge, you can break it down. There are three sets of ii-V-I patterns. More often than not, the ii-V-I pattern begins on an odd numbered measure, typically bars 7-8 of a section. In this case, each of the ii-V-I patterns begins on an even-numbered measure, 18-19, 20-21, and 22-23. You can think of the ii-V as leading you to a new resting place. So think ahead to those resting places (Gbmaj7, Dmaj7, and Gbmaj7.) This gives the bridge a sense of "leaning forward", which is a big part of the genius that made this song a standard.
And if you survive to the Gbmaj7 in bar 23, notice there is one more ii-V-I sequence (measures 24-25) taking you back to the key center of F for the final A section. So in that bridge, everything seems to happen one measure before you think it might.
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