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Diatonic chord substitution - Jazz theory and harmony lesson

Diatonic chord substitution lessonChord substitution is to replace a chord by another one to add more harmonic interest to a piece, a song or a chord progression.. In jazz music, this technique is widely used to add interest to a . It can be useful to reharmonize a harmonic sequence or a jazz standard.There are two types of substitutions :

  • Diatonic substitutions (chords that have the same tonal function) :
    • Relative minor.
    • Secondary relative minor.
    • Dominant minor (II-V).
  • Chromatic substitutions (Formed with chords from other keys or modes) :
    • Tritone substitution.
    • Secondary dominant chords.
    • Chromatic common tones.
    • Chord quality substitution.
    • Adding II-V progressions.

This post is focused on diatonic substitutions, chromatic substitutions will be discussed in another topic.

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5 tritone substitution jazz guitar licks PDF ebook - Pay what you want

5 tritone substitution jazz guitar licks ebook light5 tritone substitution licks PDF eBook with tabs, analysis, videos and backing tracks links included.
Now available by paying what you want. Click here

Guitar walking bass lesson and improvisation with tabs | Bb blues jazz progression

Guitar walking bassThis lesson is about a 12-bar blues in the key of Bb included two guitar transcriptions with tabs : a guitar walking bass line for the accompaniment and a guitar improvisation to solo over.

Note that this study is based on a common blues jazz progression but with a descending chromatic progression in bars 7 & 8 using three dominant 7th chords (Bb7, A7, Ab7) to approach G7 at the end of the bar 8.

Bb7 | Eb7 | Bb7 | % | 

Eb7 | Edim7 | Bb7 A7 | Ab7 G7 |

C-7 | G7 | Bb7 G7 | C-7 F7 | 

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NEW PDF eBook available | 11 blues-jazz progressions for guitar | Chords and comping studies

11 blues jazz progression for jazz guitar - Pdf eBookA new printable PDF eBook is available. It's about 11 blues progressions for jazz guitar with tabs, analysis (with roman numerals), explanations and audio files, divided into four chapters :

1- Blues progressions and variations
2- Chord studies
3- Guitar walking-bass studies
4 -Rhythm patterns

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How to play minor and major 6 chords on the guitar | 24 Diagrams and voicings

6 chordsMajor 6 and minor 6 chords are often used in place of major 7 and minor 7 chords when comping over jazz standards. That's why it is very important to be able to play them on the guitar neck. There are two main types of chords that contains a sixth, M6 and m6. These chords are made up of 4 notes and built with the interval patterns :

  • R-3-5-6 for the major 6 chords.
  • R-b3-5-6 for the minor 6 chords.

In this post you will see how to play these major 6 and minor 6 chords (root and inverted positions) using 24 guitar diagrams and voicing charts.

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So what chord - Jazz rhythm guitar lesson - Modal comping

So what chord - Guitar lessonThe origin of the "so what chord" name would be due to its use by the jazz pianist Bill Evans in the modal tune "So what" by Miles Davis. This is is a cool and modern sounding chord voicing often used as an alternative to quartal voicings. It is built with a fourth chord on the bottom (3 perfect fourths stacked) and a major third added on the top. This particular chord was originally played on a piano, but it is quite interesting to play it on the guitar to support rhythmically and harmonically a soloist over a modal tune.

This jazz guitar rhythm lesson with tabs and diagrams provides you some interesting ideas of comping inspired by McCoy Tyner's playing on "impressions" by John Coltrane. 

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Jazz guitar chord changes & comping study - There will never be another you

There will never be another you - Guitar chord study"There Will Never Be Another You" is a popular song by Harry Warren (music) and Mack Gordon (lyrics). It is one of the most known jazz standards and an indispensable study for any jazz guitarist. This jazz guitar comping lesson provides you different chord positions (drop 2, inverted, rootless and extended chords) on the top four strings of the guitar to comp over this jazz tune. By the way, it will also give you some new ideas to support harmonically a soloist. Indeed, you may even try to apply these chord voicings to the tunes you are used to play.

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Chords in fourths - Quartal harmony - So what chord

Quartal harmony - Chords in fourthsTo enrich and modernize the harmonization of a piece it is common to use fourth chords. They can replace some original chords to bring more melodic freedom into improvisation and more tension in harmony. Since the late 1950s, harmony in fourths has played a very important role in the development of modern jazz. Musicians and composers have used a lot the quartal harmony. Among them, the great American pianist McCoy Tyner, who is a master in the art of playing quartal chords. Mike Stern, Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Bill Evans and Kurt Rosewinkel have also used this technique. In this lesson we will see how to build chords in fourths, how to harmonize the major scale with and how to use them in comping. 

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Last edited: 29/03/2017

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