jazz guitar lesson

  • Jazz Guitar Scale Exercises – Position Shifts with the Melodic Minor Scale

    Minor scale guitar exercicesLearning and playing scales can be an important part of any guitarist’s practise regime. By playing scales in a variety of ways we can develop our familiarity with the fretboard beyond simply going up and down scales. In this tutorial we will look at combining two different scale patterns by shifting between them on various strings. For this we are going to use two patterns of an Eb Melodic minor scale, patterns 2 and 3. The Melodic minor scale consists of the intervals R 2 b3 4 5 6 7 (R is for the Root note).

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  • The Blues Arpeggio - How To Mix Major And Minor Triads

    The blues arpeggio guitar lessonWhat's the blues arpeggio ?

    Traditionally, when a student learns to improvise over a jazz, blues tune, he taught pentatonic scales, major triads or dominant 7th arpeggios, but there is something missing to get this specific and exciting jazz, blues sound. The blues arpeggio is a very interesting and important device to use over this musical genre. It is a mix of a major triad and a minor triad, it contains both major and minor thirds, representing one of the most vital elements of the blues. In this jazz guitar lesson we will see how to build the blues arpeggio, how to practice it and how to play it on a blues.

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  • Kenny Burrell - In a mellow tone - Jazz guitar transcription

    A new video has been uploaded on the youtube channel. It is a jazz guitar transcription of the jazz standard "In a mellow tone" composed by Duke Ellington and performed by Kenny Burrell in 1990. Here is the Kenny Burrell version on which the transcription is based and the link to the album dedicated to Duke Ellington.


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  • 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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  • Tritone chord substitution - Jazz guitar lesson

    Tritone chord substitutionOne of the most popular jazz chord substitution is the tritone substitution sometimes referred to as the dominant chord substitution. The most used is to replace the V with a dominant 7th chord whose root is a tritone below. Example with G7 (V), which can be replaced by Db7 a tritone (Three whole-steps) away. Thus giving two chords that have two notes in common. The 7th of G7 (F) is the third of Db7 and the third of G7 (B) is the seventh of Db7. The inversion of the 3rds and the 7ths between the original dominant chord (V) and the substituted dominant chord (bII7) is the main feature of the tritone substitution. 

    Tritone substitution

    If the most common tritone substitution involves two dominant chords, there are other chords that can be substituted as the vi chord, the ii chord, and the iii chord. You can substitute any chord which has its roots the flat fifth of the original chord. The type of chord used depends on the melody and the desired harmony. The tritone substitution can also change qualities from the chord it is substituting. Provided that the melody indicates no strong preferences for chord type. For example, dom7 chords can be played in place of minors. This could be subject of another lesson. Meanwhile this article is focused on dominant seventh tritone substitutions.

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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). 

  • What's a half-diminished chord (m7b5) ?

    What is a half diminished chordYou surely know what are major chords, minor chords, seventh chords and diminished 7th chords ? But you may be wondering what half-diminished chords are ? In music, the most encountered chords are major and minor chords. These are the basis of the Harmony. Seventh chords (m7, Maj7 and dom7) are also widely used, particularly in jazz and blues music. When a guitar student start to take an interest in jazz, he can sometimes find chords with a little barbaric names such as diminished 7th chords, augmented or even half-diminished chords (m7b5). This article will explain you what are m7b5 chords, how to play them on the guitar and how to apply them in common harmonic contexts as major and minor II-V-I progressions.

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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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  • 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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  • What are guide tones and how to use them

    What are guide tonesWhat are guide tones ? They are the notes in a chord which lead or give harmonic pull toward the next chord, these are an excellent way to study and absorb the sound of any chord progression. Guide tones are used to outline chord progressions in an improvisation. They are most of the time the 3rd and the 7th because this is what determines whether a chord is major, minor, or dominant. 

    By working on guide tones you’ll learn how to target important notes in each chord. This jazz guitar lesson explains how to solo over common jazz progressions using and connecting the guide tones.

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  • Mastering the basic jazz scales on the guitar

    Mastering basic jazz guitar scalesWhen you want to master the jazz language, one of the first thing to do is to learn scales and modes. Memorize the fingerings on the fretboard. Memorize their names, their compositions. Make the difference between a major, a minor, an augmented or a diminished scale. How many tones in this one, how many half-tones in this other one. Knowing which scales work with which chords. In the long run the practice of scales can be confusing and seems a never ending. Here are some tricks and tips to work out on scales while developing your musical ear, your guitar technique and your theoretical knowledges.

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  • 12 scales to play over dominant 7th chords - Jazz guitar lesson

    Jazz guitar licks & transcriptionsThe first thing to know before starting exploring the twelve different scales shown in this lesson is how to build a basic dominant 7th chord and what its role is.

    Dominant 7th chords are made up of a root / tonic (1), a major third (3), a perfect fifth (5) and minor seventh (b7). It is the most versatile of any chord. It is considered as a major chord because of its major third (3), indeed the 3rd tell us if the chord is minor or major. The minor seventh (b7) indicates whether the sound wants to move or not (resolve) to another chord. Usually dominant chords tend to resolve to a chord down a prefect fifth (or a chord up a perfect fourth).

    C dominant 7th chord  C E G Bb
    Intervals 1 3 5 b7
    Related Arpeggio 1 3 5 b7


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  • The seven modes of the major scale | Greek modes | Ecclesiastical modes | Jazz guitar lesson with diagrams

    Blues scalesEcclesiastical modes, also named "Greek modes"or "church modes" or "Gregorian modes" formed in the Middle Ages a set of scales whose use has weakened because of the appearance of the major / minor tonal system. Several centuries later these modes have reappeared. They are very used in jazz improvisation as scale of chords and modal playing. 

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  • Kenny Burrell jazz guitar lesson | 10 dominant 7th jazz blues licks for beginners

    Kenny BurrellKenneth Earl "Kenny" Burrell (July 31, 1931) is an American jazz guitarist from Detroit. With Wes Montgomery and Charlie Christian he is one of the most influential jazz guitarist, epitome of good taste and unique swing. His guitar sound is clear, refined and raw, easy to recognize. His guitar playing is unique, grounded in bebop and blues, the man is able to play both blues licks and swinging bebop lines.

    He has collaborated with many artists as sideman (Dizzy Gillespie, "Jimmy Hammond" Smith, Billy Holiday, Milt Jackson, Stanley Turrentine, Stan Getz, Chet Baker, The Jones Brothers...) and recorded many solo albums including the famous "Midnight blue" (Blue note, 1963).

    He has played Gibson guitars (ES-175, super 400) for the majority of is career plugged into a Fender deluxe amp.

    Midnight blue

    How smooth can jazz guitar get ? Right here is the answer. Midnight Blue (released in 1963 by blue note records and recorded by Rudy Van Gelder) is one of those records that you just put on, sit back and relaxis. In this album Kenny Burrell is accompanied by the tenor-saxophonist Stanley Turrentine in a pianoless quintet that also includes Ray Barretto on congas (a highly regarded bandleader in his own right who injects a dash of Latin flavor), Major Holley on bass and Bill English on drums. Midnight blue is considered one of the best recordings of Kenny Burrell's career.

    1. Chitlins Con Carne (5:25)Midnight blue - Kenny Burrell
    2. Mule (6:53)
    3. Soul Lament (2:39)
    4. Midnight Blue (3:59)
    5. Wavy Gravy (5:43)
    6. Gee Baby, Ain’t I Good To You (4:21)
    7. Saturday Night Blues (6:13)
    8. Kenny’s Sound (4:39) 
    9. K Twist (3:35) 

    This album is very useful for basic call-and-response type blues phrasing, recommend for anyone trying to learn playing blues on guitar.

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