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Guitar Licks: Wes Montgomery

Guitar Tablature - Wes Montgomery Licks The next great guitarist to stand up after Charlie Christian was Wes Montgomery. It took him a long time to become famous, but during the last years of his life he had great commercial success. It's the release of the album The Incredible Jazz Guitar of Wes Montgomery in 1960 that made him famous in the jazz world. Unfortunately he died of a heart attack at the height of his success, only 43 years old.

Wes Montgomery's trademarks are picking with his thumb rather then with a pick (he actually did up and down strokes with his thumbs) and his use of octaves.

His influence can still be heard today in many players. Jazz guitarists like George Benson, Pat Metheny and Emily Remler say to be influenced by Wes Montgomery.

Recommended listening: Smokin' at the Half Note (live)
Related Wes Montgomery article: Wes Montgomery's Guitar Gear

II V I Licks

1) The first lick starts with a series of arpeggio's. The first 4 notes make a Dm7 arpeggio, followed by a Cmaj7 arpeggio, then again a Dm7. The Cmaj7 arpeggio in the first bar contains all the tensions of Dm7 plus the b7 : C(b7), E(9), G(11), B(6). The Last bar is build around a C triad arpeggio.


Guitar Tablature : Wes Montgomery : Lick 1


2) The second half of the first bar consists of a chromatic line. This chromatic technique is also used a lot by Pat Metheny.


Guitar Tablature : Wes Montgomery : Lick 2


3) This one has a nice voice leading.


Guitar Tablature : Wes Montgomery : Lick 3


4) This one's a blues cliche.


Guitar Tablature : Wes Montgomery : Lick 4

V I Licks

1) There's a nice chromatic line in the second bar, delayed by the Dm arpeggio.


Guitar Tablature : Wes Montgomery : Lick 5


2) This one speaks for itself.


Guitar Tablature : Wes Montgomery : Lick 6

Minor Lick

This lick is in the D Dorian scale with some added chromatics.


Guitar Tablature : Wes Montgomery : Lick 7

Dominant Lick

This is a blues lick with some double stops.


Guitar Tablature : Wes Montgomery : Lick 8



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