jazz chords

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 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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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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