Stand By Me

Playing Bass to “Stand By Me”

This 1961 hit was written by Ben E. King and was originally written for the “Drifters” who turned down the offer to record the piece. The song was then recorded in studio. The bass line was originally done by Lloyd Nelson Trotman who played the piece on his double bass as one of the recording studio musicians.

The song went to #1 on the R&B charts and was a Top 10 hit twice on the US charts. The song was used in the 1986 film “Stand By Me” staring River Phoenix and Will Wheaton. Many people have covered the song including John Lennon and Cassius Clay (Muhammad Ali).

The song uses a version of the “Common Cord Progression” now called the “50’s Progression” used in Western pop music. The progression is: I-vi-IV-V and was particularly associated with 1950’s and 1960’s “Doo-Wop”.

Connie and I enjoyed a Sunday afternoon putting this all together. I learned the bass line and put together the recording while she collected and sorted through some old photos of ourselves together. Overall, a great project!

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2 thoughts on “Stand By Me

  1. mike says:

    good job guys i like the way you play it better than my version i am just starting to learn that progression style bravo bravo i would love to hear your take on a song called last kiss for the life of me i cant remember who did it but as a kid i loved it!

    Reply
    1. Lanny says:

      Thanks Mike – I’m sure you play it pretty well yourself…. Where are you getting the music? I try to transcribe much of mine n my own if I cannot find original sheet music to use. I don’t trust any of the online tabs out there – besides, they don’t give me any information on timing. Last Kiss, the ’60’s version by the Caviliers? Great bass line!

      Reply

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