Guitar Practice Tips
Here are some tips to help you make the most of your guitar practice time.
What Scale to Choose for Improvising?
One of the most common question a beginner asks when he wants to start improvising on guitar is : Which scale to choose over which chords? However, there is a lot of scale and a lot of chord, it is easy to get lost. That's why it is important to make the relation between them, trying to understand what is the appropriate scale that fit the chord and vice versa.
This guitar lesson provides the seventeen most important scales with shapes and formulas to know for improvising over the most used chord types in jazz music (major, minor, dominant and diminished).
Pentatonic scales are scales with five notes per octave. They are frequently used in music all over the world. The word "pentatonic" comes from the Greek word "pente" meaning five and "tonic" meaning tone.
Talk of "the" pentatonic scale generally make reference to the major pentatonic scale and its relative minor. It's a mistake, indeed there are many types of pentatonic scales (Egyptian, Ritusen, Man gong, Altered, Locrian...).
Pentatonic scales are considered earlier than heptatonic scales (seven-note scales) and can be divided into two categories :
- Containing semitones (hemitonic)
- Without semitones (anhemitonic)
The purpose of this post is to propose some tips and ideas for practicing and develop pentatonic scales.
What's Octave Playing?
Octave playing is a big part of jazz guitar language, this technique has been popularized by guitarist Wes Montgomery one of the greatest improvisers and jazz genious of all times. Theoretically, the principle is quite easy to understand. You just have to play lines using two simultaneaous notes separated by twelve semitones. In practice, it is more difficult because of the fingerings. Indeed, you have to move two fingers at the same time while keeping the same hand position. This lesson provides guitar diagrams and easy guitar lines for a good mastery of this technique.
One of the most daunting shifts for any guitarist can be entering the world of jazz guitar. We’ve all read jazz tutorials and watched videos by those in the know and it’s a vast world full of new theoretical and practical concepts.
Most guitar players get into playing through rock/blues and find jazz later on their ability spectrum. If you understand blues, you can start to make some small changes which will add a jazz dynamic to your playing. In this lesson we will cover some of those small changes you can integrate into your playing today.
Arpeggios are essential musical tools that allow you to build pure and beautiful lines while highlighting the harmony. When playing over chord changes, using arpeggios is the most efficient way to connect these chords together. This lesson provides four arpeggio exercises with tabs, standard notation and diagrams that will help improve your guitar skills and your theoretical knowledge.
This guitar lesson is about a very important concept used by many jazz improvisers named "Target notes" or "target tones" or "approach notes". It has to do with targeting chord tones by scale or chromatically. This technique opens the door to another essential type of targeting called "Enclosures" used to surround a chord tone both diatonically and chromatically from above and below. Understanding and applying "Targeting" will help you solos sound more jazzy and allow you to expand your harmonic knowledge.
Learning to maneuver through scales on your guitar will bring about a ton of benefits to you, as a player. First of all, you'll begin to perceive music a little bit differently – you'll find logic where you ought to think there was none, you'll understand how your favorite composers got their brilliant ideas, and, most importantly, you'll get to put the theory into practice.
What's more, the whole journey of exploring the theoretical sphere of music concerning the scales isn't all that hard. Essentially, you'll found yourself amidst the crossroads, and you'll have to choose a path – you'll either delve deep into books about music theory, or you'll have to figure everything out yourself.
Regardless of the path you wish to take, mastering and learning guitar scales is, quite frankly, easy. We've brought together a short list of five tips that will make the process even simpler, and more entertaining.
Guest post by Marc-Andre Seguin
So, you've decided to try your hand at Jazz guitar. This article will assume a certain base level of proficiency in the general language of music apart from the specific vernacular that informs jazz music, guitarists specifically. Not because it's a theory article, but because if you hope to learn how to play this music (and any style, really) a little knowledge goes a long way. If you have no background in notated music, theory and harmony please pick up Barbara Wharram's Theory For Beginners. It will open the door.
Generally, 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.
Tips and Tricks To Help You Practice Scales
When you want to master jazz language, one of the first things to do is to learn scales and modes. Any guitar student need to memorize the fingerings, the names and the composition of each scale. It is important to make the difference between the main types of musical scales (major, minor, augmented, symmetric and diminished), important to know what scale works with a particular chord. In the long run the practice of scales can be confusing and seems a never-ending. Here are some tricks and tips for practicing scales while developing your musical ear, your guitar technique and your theoretical knowledge.