jazz chords

  • Jazz Up Basic Guitar Chords - Jazz guitar lesson for beginners

    Jazz up your chord - Jazz guitar lessonGenerally, when a beginner start to learn to play guitar, he tackles open chords (up the guitar neck), those found in many popular songs. Then, come the bar chords (major, minor, dominant 7) a little hard to master. But all these chords do not have a very interesting sound and are not mostly used in jazz music. That's why in this lesson for jazz beginners we will take the main basic guitar bar chords to transform and enrich them so that their sonority is richer, exciting and better suited to jazz concept.

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  • Stella by Starlight - Jazz guitar chord melody lesson

    A new video is online on the youtube channel. It is a quick jazz guitar chord melody arrangement with chord diagrams of the famous jazz standard "Stella by Starlight" (Victor Young). 

  • Extended major 7th chords | Guitar diagrams & voicings | Cmaj9, Cmaj#11, Cmaj13

    Major 7th chord extensionsIf the basic sound of jazz is based on tetrad chords (four-note chords), it is common to extend them with other tones. These other notes forms the upper structure of a chord which includes 9th, 11th and 13th. Adding extensions to chords help to get off the beaten tracks and provides some new harmonic colors to your playing (chord soloing, comping, and arrangement). This lesson provides you useful extended major 7th chord shapes to apply to your playing.

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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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  • 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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  • 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 lesson - There will never be another you - TABS & JPG

    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 voicings (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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  • 15 basic jazz guitar chords you must know

    15 basic jazz guitar chordsHere are the 15 most important jazz guitar chord positions that every beginning jazz guitar student must know. They are grouped into five families : 

    • Major seventh chords (Maj7)
    • Minor seventh (m7)
    • Dominant 7th (7)
    • Half diminished / minor seventh flat fifth (m7b5)
    • Diminished 7th (dim7)

    How are built chords ?

    Chords can be built with root (1), minor (b3) or major third (3), fifth, which can be perfect (5), diminished (b5) or augmented (#5) and seventh, which can be major (7), minor (b7) or diminished (bb7). 

      minor major perfect diminished augmented
    Root          
    Third O O      
    Fifth     O O O
    Seventh O O   O  

     

    Generally speaking, chords are constructed by stacking thirds (minor and major). Here is a summary chart about the construction of the main types of chords.

    Minor seventh (m7) 1 b3 5 b7
    Major seventh (M7) 1 3 5 7
    Dominant seventh (7) 1 3 5 b7
    Half diminished (m7b5) 1 b3 b5 b7
    Diminished seventh (dim7) 1 b3 b5 bb7

     

    You will find below ten guitar fretboard diagrams and charts related to these chords. Three positions for each type of chord. One with the root on the sixth string, one with the root on the fifth and one with the root on the fourth string. Of course, there are many other important jazz chords, but the idea is to show only 15 basic chords no to destabilise the jazz beginner with too much chords. Please note that in this lesson augmented chords have been voluntarily omitted. However, for much information, you can visit the full lesson about the inverted jazz chords related to these basic positions.

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