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  1. #1

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    so for those of us who play in this style regularly, what tunes are your favorites to do? i thought i'd post a few of the tunes i've arranged that i really like to play...

    misty
    darn that dream
    embraceable you
    a foggy day
    my old flame
    i should care
    the things we did last summer

    these are my favorites right now, anyway...so what are you all playing?

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  3. #2

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    My list has some of the same tunes as yours so I will just add a few to your list. I have re-harmonized most of these. Most are old standards. I love these older tunes.

    I Remember You
    I'm Old Fashioned
    Like Someone in Love
    The old Milestones
    Along Came Betty
    Dolphin Dance
    The Lady Wants To Know
    Body and Soul
    You Go To My Head
    When Sunny Gets Blue
    The Touch of Your Lips
    Someone To Watch Over Me

  4. #3

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    I guess ill add a few

    Four on Six
    West Coast Blues
    Take Five

    Well I guess thats all for now
    Wes Montgomery anyone?

  5. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by wizard3739 View Post
    My list has some of the same tunes as yours so I will just add a few to your list. I have re-harmonized most of these. Most are old standards. I love these older tunes.

    I Remember You
    I'm Old Fashioned
    Like Someone in Love
    The old Milestones
    Along Came Betty
    Dolphin Dance
    The Lady Wants To Know
    Body and Soul
    You Go To My Head
    When Sunny Gets Blue
    The Touch of Your Lips
    Someone To Watch Over Me
    ah, the touch of your lips...loved that tune ever since i first heard tony bennett do it with bill evans. i'll have to add "young and foolish" to the list now too, and "waltz for debby." great stuff...

  6. #5

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    Ahhh, yes all good stuff. I heard the "Touch of Your Lips" first from Chet Baker and later, a very nice version from Doug Raney's "Back To New York" album. I think maybe Doug picked up on that tune when he was working with Chet Baker.

  7. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by aPAULo View Post
    I guess ill add a few

    Four on Six
    West Coast Blues
    Take Five

    Well I guess thats all for now
    Sorry about that. I didnt realize the chord-melody part.

    Could someone explain a little bit what chord-melody style is? Like would Joe Pass on Virtuoso be chord-melody?
    Wes Montgomery anyone?

  8. #7

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    yes, but joe's solo playing is chord melody on a whole different level...basically, it's playing the chords and melody at the same time, solo or with accompanyment. there was an early post in this category in which me and i believe funkyE9th posted some of our chord melodies...


    arranging songs like this is actually my favorite thing to do...

  9. #8

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    I think that the term "Chord Melody" gets thrown around a lot, but I have seen all of the following referred to as "Chord Melody."

    1. Simply playing a tune's melody with supporting chords.
    2. Playing an arrangement of a tune's melody (which may include elements such as couterpoint and single note passages (among other textures) that are not strictly though of as "chords."
    3. Improvising on a tune with chords.
    To echo Mr. Beaumont, Joe Pass knew hundreds (if not thousands) of standard tunes. He could play any of them and provide harmonic accompaniment "at will." He did play at a different level. He just knew so many tunes. I assume he also had arrangements that he knew as well. Possibly for a particular tunes intro.

    I like combinations of the above (I'm thinking of solo playing here).
    1. Arrangeing tunes such that you really aren't improvising on the tune at all...you are playing an arrangement. This can sometimes add a breather on a gig, plus, an arranged tune could be performed in a way you wouldn't normally play if you were to improvise on the tune. Obviously, you can interpret an arrangement differently each time it is played. An example would be arrangeing a tune with a "classical" approach.
    2. Play a tune's melody with chords (chord melody), but don't arrange what you are doing. Just start into the tune and see where it takes you (or you take it<g>). You will find yourself in new territory with fresh ideas that could eventually be incorporated in an arrangement.
    3. Play a chord progression that you know and try and create your own melody.
    Nothing profound here, but it can help spice up a lonely gig. I have had to play many solo gigs, and it is cool, fun and rewarding to approach things differently. You can even apply restrictions to see where it takes you. For example, "I am going to play this tune without playing on my low E or A strings." It does become sort of a game.

    However, my favorite solo jazz guitar tunes (as recorded by others) are usually very elaborate arrangements. I love to hear guys improvise on tunes, but to hear a very excellent standard played as an arrangement can be mind blowing. When I first heard Johnny Smith play his arrangement of a tune called "Golden Earrings" (forgot the name of the album) it was just incredible. Or Pat Martino playing "Passatta On Guitar" and "Both Sides Now." Yeah, there is some improv on those, but they are arrangements as well.

    -Butch

  10. #9

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    I think chord melody is the style I like most. Johnny Smiths' cut on "Golden Earrings" was very typical of his style. I also believe his classic version of "Moonlight in Vermont" changed the way many guitarists (myself included) use their instruments. For me, the Mellow Guitar" album by George Van Eps was the release that made me want to be a guitarist. What went through my head was " How could he play so much with just one guitar??" He was truly a master of the 7-string and has influenced many of the current jazz guitarists.Best Wishes.

  11. #10

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    Hey Wizard, do you recall the title of the album by Johnny Smith that has "Golden Earrings" on it? I would like to get the CD version of it if it is available. That album had a lot of standards on it that are associated with guitar - "The Shadow Of Your Smile", "Manha De Carnival" (Black Orpheus) among others.

    Thanks,
    Butch

  12. #11

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    This is the only one I remember: Best wishes

    Legends: Solo Guitar Performances
    Audio CD (August 24, 1994)
    Original Release Date: February 23, 1976
    Number of Discs: 1
    Label: Concord Records

    This one has very tasty George Van Eps solos on it also.

    song list:

    1. I'm Old Fashioned - Johnny Smith 2. Macho's Lullaby - Johnny Smith 3. 'round Midnight - Johnny Smith 4. Wally's Waltz - Johnny Smith 5. Black, Black, Black - Johnny Smith 6. Golden Earrings - Johnny Smith 7. Romance De Los Pinos - Johnny Smith 8. Nortena - Johnny Smith 9. The Maid With The Flaxen Hair - Johnny Smith 10. Waltz - Johnny Smith 11. The Old Castle From 'Pictures At An Exhibition' - Johnny Smith 12. Sevilla - Johnny Smith 13. Cheek To Cheek - George Van Eps 14. A Foggy Day - George Van Eps 15. Tangerine - George Van Eps 16. Sunny - George Van Eps 17. Why Was I Born? - George Van Eps 18. I Didn't Know What Time It Was - George Van Eps 19. Tea For Two - George Van Eps 20. The Man I Love - George Van Eps

  13. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont View Post
    so for those of us who play in this style regularly, what tunes are your favorites to do? i thought i'd post a few of the tunes i've arranged that i really like to play...

    misty
    I am actively trying to get misty going, but it is so hard. I am also working on 'Night and Day', which I have been having a little more success with.

    I am finding that if you listen to JP's stuff decreased by around 30% with the Amazing Slow Downer (or something like it), you can not only hear the notes clearly, but more importantly it seems that his 'feeling' really comes through.

    Not sure if that makes sense, but when slowed down, I understand how he was trying to play it rhythmically with his 'feelings'. Eh, anways --- I just wanted to say those are two I am really trying to learn.
    ...practice is fun

  14. #13

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    My favorite style of playing. I have been working on tunes for awhile, and have this set list so far.

    Autum Leaves All The Things You Are
    Alone Together Beautiful Love Call Me
    Deacon Blue Don't Get Around
    Days of Wine & Roses
    Gentle Rain Georgia
    Girl from Inpanema How High The Moon
    In a Mellow Tone Misty
    My Romance Shadow of Your Smile

    I am working on adding subs, walking basslines, and throwing in improv lines to expand them now.

  15. #14

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    deacon blues? the steely dan tune? i'd love to hear that...i'm a huge dan fan.

  16. #15

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    Yeah, I got that arrangement from the book "Steely Dan for Solo Guitar". I really like the old standards, but one of my goals is to incorporate tunes that are more contemporary into my rep.

    Steely Dan, Beatles (of course), Stevie Wonder, Burt Bacharach, etc, all have wonderful tunes that seem to work well for solo guitar.

    My arranging abilities are pretty elementary at this point. I use the 3 note "Freddy Green" 7th chord shell voicings, and put the melody on top. That is the basis of what I do, then throw in other chords periodically.

    I have been working on Robert Conti's approach, and with his method, you can pretty much arrange any tune if you have the melody.

  17. #16

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    I hear what you are saying,Derek,about the mixing of contemporary songs into the standards mix.Some of Steely Dan's stuff is certainly appropriate IMO..the song Cousin Dupree form a recent Dan CD is excellent....great chords.....
    I'd like to know some more contemporary songs that people use in jazz.I know any amount of standards but I like to feel that I'm living and playing in the 21st century as well as the last.

  18. #17

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    Actually 'Cousin Dupree" might not lend itself to chord melody style.Good song tho'

  19. #18

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    Morjaz wrote:

    >I'd like to know some more contemporary songs that people use in jazz.I >know any amount of standards but I like to feel that I'm living and >playing in the 21st century as well as the last.

    Some of the tunes I hear for solo guitar (and ensemble) are, Bacharach's "Call Me", "The Look of Love" (currently working this one up), and "This Guy's In Love".

    Several people have done Cyndi Lauper's "True Colors", and "Time After Time". Stochello Rosenberg does a killer version of Stevie Wonder's "I Wish", and Jimmy Rosenberg tears up the "Theme From Aladin".

    Jody Fisher does a great job with The Beach Boys "Surfer Girl", Eagles "Desparado", and Beatles "Here There & Everywhere".

    Lenny Breau did "Monday, Monday" by the Mamas & Papas, "A Hard Day's Night", and "You Needed Me" by Ann Murray . Several people have already done Nora Jone's "I Don't Know Why".

    Just because standards were mined from dance (pop) and show tunes back in the day doesn't mean we can't use Disney or other sources now. I love it when I hear someone playing familar tunes and then drop in something unexpected like the above. Really does it for me.

  20. #19

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    Just the other night I was trying to think of something 'ironic' to pick and try to play as a jazz tune. By ironic, I mean a heavy metal song, or something rough and loud. I would love to make a song like that nice and smooth just for fun.

    Maybe something like 'Back in Black' by AC/DC?
    ...practice is fun

  21. #20

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    you need some melody...

    let's start a list of pop tunes that might be fun to do...

    i've done al green's "lets stay together" and "don't tal" by the beach boys...i even figured out a solo arrangement of a tune called "adam's song" by blink 182 for a student...has a nice, if not somewhat repetitive melody.

    i would think some carpenters tunes would work nicely...

    i'd like to figure out a chord melody to harry nilsson's version of badfinger's "without you." (you know, the one mariah carey schmaltzed up)

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont View Post
    you need some melody...

    let's start a list of pop tunes that might be fun to do...
    I think that is an awesome idea mr. b -- is there any criteria we should look for though?
    ...practice is fun

  23. #22

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    i think you just need a strong, easily recognizable melody...

    it'd be cool if the song had a cool chord progression too, but when you start harmonizing, you can make it interesting...

    last night, my fiancee had on some weezer (and yet we get along, go figure), and i picked up the tune "jamie." always liked that one...i'm gonna try arranging it.

  24. #23

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    What about something like 'Margaritaville' by Jimmy Buffett?
    ...practice is fun

  25. #24

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    This is not solo jazz guitar, but Alex Skolnik, the shredder kid who used to be in the 80's band Testament grew up, and went back to school to get a jazz performance degree.

    He now fronts the Alex Skolnik trio, (google him and his site will pop up) and their first album was metal anthems run thru the jazzinator. Pretty cool stuff, but not for the jazz purist.

    It is a great object lesson in the idea that most anything can be turned into a jazz tune. So, if you have a strong melody, as Mr. B says, all that limits you is your imagination, and ability.

  26. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by derek View Post
    ...all that limits you is your imagination, and ability.
    Do'h...stupid ability!
    ...practice is fun

  27. #26

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    My songlist:

    Don´t get around much anymore (with special arrangement)
    Ornithology
    Well you needent
    Satin Doll
    Summertime (Jazz/Funk)

    Bye !

  28. #27

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    This is a cool topic.

    Way back, when I frist started learning jazz in the '70s, I remember learning standards and then listening to pop and rock on the radio (as well as the local L.A. jazz station of course ). But, there was always a disconnect to me with the tunes. So many great standards were not played very often, and so many pop tunes from then have a lot of nostalgia for me. Some 80's pop tunes were cool too. I was passionately involved with jazz, but I only heard standards associated with jazz guys or muzak played in stores and elevators!

    There were many cool pop tunes from the 60's and 70's but you didn't hear jazz guys playing them.

    I started to learn some of the more contempory pop tunes (meaning, tunes we don't think of as standards) in the 80's when I was playing regularly in a jazz trio. It was a lot of fun, and as Mr. Beaumont stated, you could add some spice to the chord progressions with a little reharmonizing. Below is a list of some of the tunes I played. Some were definatley played for the humor, but it was cool to play these tunes in a "jazz" way, but also have an audience who could recognize the tunes.

    Some examples:

    Bossa tunes:
    1. And I Love Her (The Beatles)
    2. If You Could Read My Mind (Gordon Lightfoot)
    3. Belive it or not...Stairway to Heaven (Led Zepplin) was fun to play as a bossa with the descending Am, Am+7, Am7 chord thing going on. I used to just play the first section of the tune...seriously, it was always fun.
    Ballads:
    1. I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry (Hank Williams Sr.)
    2. You've Got To Hide Your Love Away (The Beatles)
    3. The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face (Roberta Flack).
    4. Lay Lady Lay (Bob Dylan)
    Actually, there are several tunes that have great melodies. You may not like the Carpenters, The Fifth Dimension, The Everly Brothers and others, but if you look past the recording and check out the actual tune you will find some "diamonds in the rough". It can also be alot of fun.

    -Butch

  29. #28

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    Absolutely a cool subject.
    I'll throw in 'We're Only Making Plans For Nigel' to the list,as I heard a near bossa version recently and it sounded quite good.
    Of course one person's 'cool' and 'hip' is another persons 'square'.
    And you can make a square song hip by what you do with it.
    The standards that we play have been established some time ago.If you play a standard it's going to sound at least a little like jazz.....if you are good you will breathe new life and fire into the piece.
    Taking a contemporary song and jazzing it convincingly is harder IMO.Pulling the song from one genre,jazzing it,and presenting it in a different genre.
    But of course it can be done and I hope the 'contemporay' list 'grows and grows...

  30. #29

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    John Pizzarelli did a disc a while back called "John Pizzarelli Meets the Beatles". Excellent job of remaking these tunes in various jazz styles.

    Of course, on the other end you have Richard Cheese. He has taken all sorts of rap, pop, and metal tune and "lounged them out". Here is his myspace page. Worth a look.

    www.myspace.com/richardcheese2

  31. #30

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    I've been a big fan of JP......he's also laid down a swinging "Fools Fall in Love',(I like the chordpro in this).....and he's covered 'God Only Knows"
    Very recently The Puppini Sisters made swing versions of 'Wuthering Heights' and 'Heart of Glass'

  32. #31

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    My list at the moment

    Wes Montgomery
    Bumpin ( there's a very good Powertab-version available : check it out)
    Canadian sunset
    The shadow of your smile

    Summer night ( the version of Philip Catherine : much better th. for ex. Joe Pass : less is more)
    Midnite blue (Kenny Burrell )
    Black coffee ( Webster-Burke )
    Desifinado ( Jobim )
    James (Metheny )
    Doc (Earl Klugh )
    Affirmation ( G.Benson )
    Last edited by Aladin111; 07-30-2007 at 04:21 AM.

  33. #32

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    Hi guys... might as well list some of the songs that I do...

    Satin Doll
    Misty
    What Are You Doing The Rest of Your Life
    Bluesette
    Shadow of your Smile
    Corcovado
    One Note Samba
    Ipanema
    Isn't She Lovely
    Yesterday
    Michelle

    plus a few more..
    Anyway guys.... it's a pleasure to be on this forum with all of you.
    Keep up the good work!
    frio

  34. #33

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    Just discovered some great (jazz - latin) tunes ( written by )
    Added them to my songlist.

    Flamingo ( T.Grouya )
    Summer Samba ( M + S.Valle )
    Estate ( Bruno Martino )
    Kiko ( Klugh )

    Not very difficult to play.

  35. #34

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    Swanee River(up)...Beautiful Dreamer (6/8)...Red River Valley (Bossa)...
    As Long As He Needs Me(Oliver)...Things We Said Today(Beatles) Latin (Wes Octaves)..Up The Lazy River (Up)...Polka Dots And Moonbeams (CM)...Let's Fall In Love (CM)..I've Got A Crush On You(CM)...Let's Call The Whole Thing Off (CM)...Corcovado (CM)...Blue Skies(up)...Billies' Bounce(up)...Tune Up(CM)...and on and on...

    time on the instrument,,,pierre

  36. #35

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    Some current favorites:

    Lullaby of the Leaves
    Misty (CM)
    Bernie's Tune (CM)
    Rhythm-a-ning
    Scrapple from the Apple
    How High The Moon (CM)
    Topsy
    Comin' Home
    Angel Eyes

  37. #36

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    Hello, my name is Sam and I am new to this forum. In fact, this is my very first post/reply.

    I have been a player off and on for forty years, but I started learning theory and jazz only recently. I play a D'Angelico NYL-5 archtop with a floating pickup, a Martin accoustic/electric flattop, and a 1972 Gibson SG Deluxe that I purchased new in 1972.

    I've enjoyed reading some of the suggestions to consider for the playlists. I have only recently started to try and work out some arrangements myself and I'm taking it slow mainly due to lack of experience & knowlege. A lot of the tunes on my own playlist I've learned from tabs and scores. No matter how I've learned them, I still really enjoy playing them and hunger for more. Here is my current playlist:

    I’ve Grown Accustomed to Your Face
    The Shadow of Your Smile
    Black Orpheus (Maha De Carnaval)
    The Girl from Ipanema
    All the Things You Are
    Corcovado (Quiet Night and Quiet Stars)
    Just the Way You Are
    God Bless the Child
    Misty

  38. #37

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    Green Dolphin Street
    Have You Met Miss Jones
    There'll Never Be Another You
    You Stepped Out Of A Dream
    Tangerine
    I Love You (Cole Porter)
    Out Of Nowhere
    Stella By Starlight

  39. #38

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    A couple of suggestions for recent songs that may work - "Goodbye Mr A" by the Hoosiers and "Fix You" by Coldplay. I haven't tried them yet but I'll get round to it soonish. Right now I'm working on "Secret Love" and "Georgia on my Mind".
    Spiderman needs no fancy suit or gadgets plus he's a jazz guitar fan

  40. #39

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    Just stumbled on this thread. Someone a while back mentioned Richard Cheese, and I just have to say that he's freaking awesome and hilarious. Also, someone asked about the Johnny Smith album with "Golden Earrings" on it. It's on a record that is simply called "Johnny Smith." I have it on vinyl, but I think it's available on CD. It has a black cover and a pic of his guitar in the middle. What a great album. The version of "Yesterday" he does on it is to die for. On the actual topic, a couple of my favorite songs to play that I haven't seen mentioned (unless I just missed them) are "Beautiful Love," but done kind of slow, and "I Can't Give You Anything But Love." I know I'm kind of being Captain Obvious, but what a great source for finding new material this thread is.

  41. #40

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    All The Things You Are
    Autumn Leaves
    Georgia On My Mind
    Green Dolphin Street
    Here’s That Rainy Day
    Misty
    Moonlight In Vermont
    Over The Rainbow
    Satin Doll
    Sleepwalk
    The Christmas Song
    Till There Was You

  42. #41

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    WOW! And here l am struggling with a little solo on 'That cat is high'! Play loadsa Beatles tho, mainly as songs, one of my favourites was one they covered... 'Till there was you'. Love their harmonies too. Happy jazzing!

  43. #42

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    Misty, Somewhere Over The Rainbow, Something, When I'm 64, Suicide is painless (The MASH Theme), Night and Day, WhenYou Wish Upon A Star

  44. #43

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    Hi Sundogg. I see you're one of many who play 'Over the rainbow', is this the Eva Cassidy version or the original style arranged for guitar? I once had a score for jazz guitar and lost it. Do you know if there is a jazz version of the original style available these days? As l'm a complete newbie to the jazz world, it seems right to tell you that l am unfamiliar with many of the jazz players and music discussed on this site. Many thanks. . Regi

  45. #44

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    Hi Regi, There are some excellent versions of "Rainbow" by guitarists, Tommy Emmanual plays a nice one as did Ted Greene, Earl Klugh and the list goes on. The version I found that most inspired me however was Keith Jarrett, the pianist and Bill Evans. If you are just getting into chord melody playing there is some very good information here at this site and many people willing to offer assistance. One of the things my teacher, an excellent jazz guitarist Tom Lagana, taught me was to listen to everyone, horn players, pianists (who are harmonically sophisticated) and of course guitarists. Some chord melody players I would suggest are Martin Taylor, Joe Pass, Barney Kessell, Ted Greene, Lenny Breau, Earl Klugh and then read interviews with them to see who they listen to. Check out pianists Keith Jarrett and Bill Evans, they play fairly close to the melody line with some beautiful and original embellishments.

  46. #45

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    Hi Sundogg. Thank you so much for sharing your time with me...it will not go to waste! Yes l do love using chords and have a reasonable understanding of them so am attentive to your suggestions of named guitarists to listen to. I do listen to other instruments but mainly bass, and like...if and when possible...to include a walking bassline. Oh that we had more hands! However, l'm somewhat tentative about going 'too deep' as yet, and feel l need to maintain self discipline and be 'theoretically content' before l tackle anything too complex. But thanks to this site... and its members, l am getting there! Having said all that Sundogg, you've led me into temptation...l'm gonna go and buy some of the music you recommend...with my pension that is...hope l've got time to learn it! Thanks again. Warm regards. Regi