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  1. #1

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    2nd position key of F, Some new chord forms, and a Chord Study.

    Don't forget to review.

  2.  

    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2
    Posting in this thread to grab the attention of everyone on these pages. I posted in the pages 1-8 to thread because that's where I'm at right now, but I was just curious.

    What do you all feel like has improved so far in your study of this book? Is it just dexterity and sight reading, or have you noticed an improvement in knowledge of theory/improvisation/jazz related stuff?

    I'm always up for getting better in any area but it would be cool if this gave me a good start on composing jazz for guitar.

  4. #3

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    Hi coyote, I think you'll find we're all quite different in our starting points. For myself, what has improved:

    left hand
    right hand
    knowledge of fretboard

    However the main thing for me has been that I love the music that Leavitt wrote. I appreciate that he has laid out a strategy for me and I'm happy to see it through. I now play jazzy-sounding music. On guitar, not jazz.

    Theory/improv - hasn't made much difference for me. With my background I really need basic competence at what I'm doing before I can improvise. I can't just take a shape and let my ear guide me through it. So I have not been expecting Leavitt to help with improvising, but I do expect it to get me to a level where I can follow another improv course I am familiar with.

    Will Leavitt help if your ultimate aim is composing for jazz guitar? Yes, but by itself it will not be enough. You will need jazz too. Leavitt gives you the basics without which jazz will seem complicated and difficult.

  5. #4

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    For me I think I'm improving on:

    Dexterity

    Sight Reading

    Mental Focus - all this recording has made me realize how when I practice I had often not been that focused, to the extent that I didn't give mistakes much attention. Once I'm recording that completely changes.

    Picking technique - in particular playing with rest strokes on chords on the inside strings.

  6. #5

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    Regarding Composing - Did you see the little compositions that some of us did early in the course. I believe it was one of the first few threads.

    I think if you tried to use the same material that Leavitt used and compose your way through the book you could learn a lot about composing. See if you can find those posts and compositions, it was in one of the first few threads.

  7. #6

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    Made a little mistake at the end. What are you going to do?


  8. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by fep
    What are you going to do?
    Naughty, naughty, you'll need to do it all again now!

    I'm hoping to record today. I find this shape particularly challenging with all the stretches, but the arps are worse than anything. And the chord etude slays me.

  9. #8

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    More to follow.

    Scales:


    I am quite disappointed to see how little I stretch to get to the first fret notes. It feels like I stretch, but you wouldn't know it from looking at my hand.
    Last edited by ten left thumbs; 06-08-2012 at 02:06 PM.

  10. #9

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    Great job folks!

  11. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by ten left thumbs


    More to follow.

    Scales:


    I am quite disappointed to see how little I stretch to get to the first fret notes. It feels like I stretch, but you wouldn't know it from looking at my hand.
    Kudos to you, that chord etude is a ... well let's just say it's hard.

    And good job on the scales.

    I'm not sure I've seen a tune to be played Rubato that has A tempo markings on it. Oh well, I know what they mean. I tried the chord etude this morning thinking I'd record, and I realize perhaps not. I need to work on this one.

  12. #11

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    Thanks. The chord etude is challenging. Very challenging. They only get harder.

    You may remember some time ago I posted I was finding the book too hard and quite demoralizing. This is where I was. For 2 months I woke every morning to feel my left hand had been put through a mangle. I couldn't make progress. I had to use other books and materials to distract myself, while still plodding through.

    I moved on when I got to a certain level of imperfection I thought was OK.

    So, now I'm curious, what do you find difficult about this? Working out the notes? Fingers in the right places? Making it musical? I ask because you're a much better player and I have trouble imagining what would be difficult for you.

    For me the difficulty is 99% getting the lh fingers in the right places, also the picking accuracy (though that is coming). Just getting them there and holding them is so physically demanding.

  13. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
    For me the difficulty is 99% getting the lh fingers in the right places, also the picking accuracy (though that is coming).
    That's it for me too. The chord picking has always been challenging as I had used either fingerpicking or hybrid picking for certain situations in the past. And as long as I've been playing, a lot of these chord changes are new to me. For instance B.2 of M.2 of S.2 and M.2 if S.3 etc.

    And reading chords written in notation is a challenge too as I haven't memorized any of these pieces.

  14. #13

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    My attempt

    Critique, I'm still not strumming fast enough. A technique thing I still need to improve on when doing chords on inside strings with a rest stroke.


  15. #14

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    You made a good job of it Frank, if it was difficult, it didn't sound so.

    I have two quite distinct phases in learning this type of piece. There is reading the notation and working out how it all fits on the fretboard, making decisions about which finger to use, and writing that in, plus any other wee reminders I need. I quite enjoy the 'reading and working out' part, it's almost like a cross-word puzzle.

    Then there's the phase of 'now that I accept this is what my fingers must do, training them to actually do it' - and that's what takes time.

    I suppose that last phase, playing it according to my own interpretation, and making it musical, I rarely get to.

  16. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by ten left thumbs
    You made a good job of it Frank, if it was difficult, it didn't sound so.

    I have two quite distinct phases in learning this type of piece. There is reading the notation and working out how it all fits on the fretboard, making decisions about which finger to use, and writing that in, plus any other wee reminders I need. I quite enjoy the 'reading and working out' part, it's almost like a cross-word puzzle.

    Then there's the phase of 'now that I accept this is what my fingers must do, training them to actually do it' - and that's what takes time.

    I suppose that last phase, playing it according to my own interpretation, and making it musical, I rarely get to.
    Thanks Lauren,

    Writing on the music is a good practice. I'm not doing it, as I'm really focused on improving my reading.

    All those steps make sense and it is a matter of how difficult a piece is. This chord etude and the previous chord etude, those are the ones I had to put work on. Some of the others, I read through once or twice and then hit record. Sometimes one take, other times several takes. I've gotten to were I just take the attitude that I'm practicing while I'm recording, kind of takes the pressure off and I don't care if I have do multiple takes.

    I think on this chord etude I never got to that "musical" stage.

    What are your thoughts on how to proceed.

    I just did the calculation - 52 pages left, about 28 weeks left in the year, that's about 2 pages a week.

    Of course if you want we could try to finish sooner than the end of the year.

    And, what about doing more pages per thread but let the threads run two weeks? There aren't as many posts per thread any more.

    If you leave it up to me, I might proceed to fast.

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by fep
    Writing on the music is a good practice. I'm not doing it, as I'm really focused on improving my reading.
    My book is full of scribbles in pencil. First off, I need to put treble clefs and key signatures in. Second, the fingering (as I absolutely cannot deal with guitar fingering, so I pencil in index does this, ring does that, when needed). Then when I come across a chord I know and recognise, I put in the chord symbol. Call it cheating, but I think he wants us to notice these chord fragments he gives, and it helps me piece the puzzle together.

    What are your thoughts on how to proceed.

    I just did the calculation - 52 pages left, about 28 weeks left in the year, that's about 2 pages a week.

    Of course if you want we could try to finish sooner than the end of the year.

    And, what about doing more pages per thread but let the threads run two weeks? There aren't as many posts per thread any more.

    If you leave it up to me, I might proceed to fast.
    I think we can probably finish before the end of the year. Some of those pages are reading studies, and they really don't count! Right now I'm working around page 90, so happy to go faster till you catch up with me.

    We could do a thread per lesson, so a thread for the rest of F major (up to page 79), then:
    lesson 10 (G major p 80ff)
    lesson 11 (D major, p 90ff)
    lesson 12 (A major p 100 ff)
    lesson 13 (3rd pos, p 112ff)
    lesson 14 (4th pos , p 117)

    There are no chord or picking etudes in lessons 13 or 14. Perhaps allot a fortnight per thread?

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by ten left thumbs

    We could do a thread per lesson, so a thread for the rest of F major (up to page 79), then:
    lesson 10 (G major p 80ff)
    lesson 11 (D major, p 90ff)
    lesson 12 (A major p 100 ff)
    lesson 13 (3rd pos, p 112ff)
    lesson 14 (4th pos , p 117)

    There are no chord or picking etudes in lessons 13 or 14. Perhaps allot a fortnight per thread?
    Good idea. I haven't seen the lessons listed like this. We'll see if a fornight works out. It's easy enough to touch base and see how it's going and adjust the speed accordingly.

    Thanks

  19. #18

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    It's all in the CD (the organisation by lesson). It just gives me that feeling of accomplishment when I can tick a lesson off. Somehow that feels more than just moving on a page.

    There's no way those could be real, weekly lessons, they cover far too much.

  20. #19

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    Page 71, Eighth Note Study
    https://www.box.com/s/0d711228b7a986bf5ae9

  21. #20

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    Nicely done, Oldhead. Good to have you back!

  22. #21

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    Page 70. I should have slowed it down.

    https://www.box.com/s/b6cf835bd0dabe7e6e97

  23. #22

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    Hi Dave, good to see you here again. Well done on the recording, you were brave to take it at such a speed and still do the repeats.

  24. #23

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    I'm going through this (chord etude 2) now - some of these chords are real hard to play fast. The second half of the first bar is a pig to play as written - unless you want to cheat and hit the open B string ... Will take a few weeks to get through that one !

  25. #24

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    Still wanting to be of the people who finish the book. Been busy at it.

    p70 - F Major.


    Very intense I found it to be. Spent too much time on it. This is the main critique for myself.

    p71 - Eighth-note Study


    This study made me realize that I was avoiding learning to read the notes in the IInd and IIIrd position. Instaed, I read the notes to help me memorize the patterns and then try to play them right long enough hoping for the best and trying to get to the end of the study.

    It really hit me once I realized how bad this is is. Not only does it need longer before anything semi-decent comes out. Also the frustration was huge and I wasn't doing what the book was intended for in the first place being: learning to read notes!

    p71 - Chord Forms

    Went over this one a little quick. Making these sound good I find to be very hard. I feel like they're quite telling of where you really stand with the guitar more than playing melodies or leads.

    p71 - Arpeggio's


    Nothing feels more like you are training everything than the Arpeggio Studies. I like them in the sense that they make you feel like you're working hard haha.

    p72 - Chord Etude


    Getting the hang of going through a piece more quickly the first time. Very rough, also recording gear wise. It'll get musical someday

  26. #25

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    Is the point of the chord etude to understand all of the chords? With some analysis I can get some/most of them, but not everyone is easy to get. Strange that the book focuses so little on reading chords from sheet music really.

  27. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by znerken
    Is the point of the chord etude to understand all of the chords? With some analysis I can get some/most of them, but not everyone is easy to get. Strange that the book focuses so little on reading chords from sheet music really.
    No, not entirely. He is building your guitar arranging/chord melody playing from the ground up.

    But - "understand" the chords? What do you mean by that exactly? What is implied by "understanding"?

    Finally, he shows you lots of chords through the series, and you will notice that he has a lot of charts with symbols written above (see page 71 for example). How can one play complex music with effective voice leading from symbols alone if they never learned the various chord voicing choices in the first place? This isn't pop/rock barre chord land anymore.
    Last edited by Jazzstdnt; 12-28-2018 at 10:40 AM.

  28. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazzstdnt
    No, not entirely. He is building your guitar arranging/chord melody playing from the ground up.

    But - "understand" the chords? What do you mean by that exactly? What is implied by "understanding"?

    Finally, he shows you lots of chords through the series, and you will notice that he has a lot of charts with symbols written above (see page 71 for example). How can one play complex music with effective voice leading from symbols only if they never learned the various chord voicing choices in the first place? This isn't pop/rock barre chord land anymore.

    Well, poor choice of words by me. I of course understand the theory behind all chords. I was referring to "picture" recognition, when looking at notes stacked on tops of each others. Perhaps that makes it more clear. So when you play that Chord Etude no 2, should you spend time analysing which chords they all are, and how they work harmonically? You could also just play through the etude and don't spend too much time thinking about what chords you play, of course.


    Like this:

    A Modern Method For Guitar Volume 1 Pages 70 to 72-screenshot-2018-12-28-15-23-31-jpg



    In very few situations have I had the need to recognise chords from sheet music, so I guess that's why I am not that good at it. I mean, using real book for example, you always have the chord spelled out.

  29. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by znerken
    Well, poor choice of words by me. I of course understand the theory behind all chords. I was referring to "picture" recognition, when looking at notes stacked on tops of each others. Perhaps that makes it more clear. So when you play that Chord Etude no 2, should you spend time analysing which chords they all are, and how they work harmonically? You could also just play through the etude and don't spend too much time thinking about what chords you play, of course.


    Like this:

    A Modern Method For Guitar Volume 1 Pages 70 to 72-screenshot-2018-12-28-15-23-31-jpg



    In very few situations have I had the need to recognise chords from sheet music, so I guess that's why I am not that good at it. I mean, using real book for example, you always have the chord spelled out.
    OK a few items.

    1. Yes, picture recognition of chords from notation only is a skill to build. Pianists have to do that. Classical guitarists have to do that. Latin guitarists have to do that, etc. If you play jazz in a big band you may encounter some charts with specific voicings. But more to the point - if you study, play, arrange, or compose harmonically sophisticated music for solo guitar you will need to possess that skill.

    2. Playing first and analyzing second is fine for now. There is a LOT of hand training going on at this point (Volume 1). Later in the series you will learn more about how to approach the creation of such arrangements yourself.

    3. In the Real Book you "always have the chord spelled out"? I think it's just the opposite. You almost NEVER have the chord spelled out - you have a symbol. And in that instance it is left to you to voice it effectively. Such books are not piano or guitar books. No singer, drummer, horn player or bassist will ever have to bother themselves with chord voicings when playing the tune. That is left to the pianists and guitarists, and they are expected to be very resourceful on the spot.

  30. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazzstdnt
    OK a few items.

    1. Yes, picture recognition of chords from notation only is a skill to build. Pianists have to do that. Classical guitarists have to do that. Latin guitarists have to do that, etc. If you play jazz in a big band you may encounter some charts with specific voicings. But more to the point - if you study, play, arrange, or compose harmonically sophisticated music for solo guitar you will need to possess that skill.

    2. Playing first and analyzing second is fine for now. There is a LOT of hand training going on at this point (Volume 1). Later in the series you will learn more about how to approach the creation of such arrangements yourself.

    3. In the Real Book you "always have the chord spelled out"? I think it's just the opposite. You almost NEVER have the chord spelled out - you have a symbol. And in that instance it is left to you to voice it effectively. Such books are not piano or guitar books. No singer, drummer, horn player or bassist will ever have to bother themselves with chord voicings when playing the tune. That is left to the pianists and guitarists, and they are expected to be very resourceful on the spot.
    Regarding #3
    You have to use the spelled out "parent" chord, together with the melody underneath to choose the appropriate chord. So for example a C7, and there is a G in the melody note, so you voice the chord with G in top. This is what you refer to, right? At least as an example.

    Regarding your other points. I think that's part of the problem with this book, to be honest. It's not easy enough for a beginner, and it's not challenging enough(on some points) for someone who have played a while. However, I think it's great for learning to read, and building strength and technique. Still, I practice arpeggios as soon as I have closed the book. I also practice 5 position stuff, as soon as I have closed it. It's like I am in church on sundays, but doing drugs on weekdays. Anarchist


    Anyway, I picked it up to practice what I just mentioned, so for me it's great. All the other stuff I practice after I have closed the book. Volume 1 is almost taking me a year with 1-2 hours every day, so it's not like it's easy to play the pieces. Even though I have played guitar for some years.

  31. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by znerken
    Regarding #3
    You have to use the spelled out "parent" chord, together with the melody underneath to choose the appropriate chord. So for example a C7, and there is a G in the melody note, so you voice the chord with G in top. This is what you refer to, right?
    It depends on what you're doing.

    Chord melody - yes.

    Comping? Probably not because you'll interfere with the soloist/lead.

    But even for chord melody/solo guitar it's more than just the melody note and some kind of spelling below. There are many options for what is spelled below. Just look at what Leavitt does. It may be one note below the melody, or 2,3,4 etc.

  32. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by znerken
    Regarding #3
    You have to use the spelled out "parent" chord, together with the melody underneath to choose the appropriate chord. So for example a C7, and there is a G in the melody note, so you voice the chord with G in top. This is what you refer to, right? At least as an example.

    Regarding your other points. I think that's part of the problem with this book, to be honest. It's not easy enough for a beginner, and it's not challenging enough(on some points) for someone who have played a while. However, I think it's great for learning to read, and building strength and technique. Still, I practice arpeggios as soon as I have closed the book. I also practice 5 position stuff, as soon as I have closed it. It's like I am in church on sundays, but doing drugs on weekdays. Anarchist
    I understand.

    Firstly, no it is not a beginner's book - BUT it has never been depicted by the author as one. He has two books for them (Berklee Press). Once upon a time it was used by Berklee freshman, and who ever said that a music major freshman was a "beginner"?

    Regarding the order of things, if you will look at Berklee Guitar's 8 levels you will have a little insight into how they teach now. (8 levels of semester end "barrier" exams). Of note - both triad and seventh chord arpeggios are included right from the start, to your point.

    That said, Leavitt's books are still very valuable to a developing jazz guitarist, with some edits/adjustments.

    Cheers.

  33. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazzstdnt
    I understand.

    Firstly, no it is not a beginner's book - BUT it has never been depicted by the author as one. He has two books for them (Berklee Press). Once upon a time it was used by Berklee freshman, and who ever said that a music major freshman was a "beginner"?

    Regarding the order of things, if you will look at Berklee Guitar's 8 levels you will have a little insight into how they teach now. (8 levels of semester end "barrier" exams). Of note - both triad and seventh chord arpeggios are included right from the start, to your point.

    That said, Leavitt's books are still very valuable to a developing jazz guitarist, with some edits/adjustments.

    Cheers.

    Well said

  34. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazzstdnt
    I understand.

    Firstly, no it is not a beginner's book - BUT it has never been depicted by the author as one. He has two books for them (Berklee Press). Once upon a time it was used by Berklee freshman, and who ever said that a music major freshman was a "beginner"?

    Regarding the order of things, if you will look at Berklee Guitar's 8 levels you will have a little insight into how they teach now. (8 levels of semester end "barrier" exams). Of note - both triad and seventh chord arpeggios are included right from the start, to your point.

    That said, Leavitt's books are still very valuable to a developing jazz guitarist, with some edits/adjustments.

    Cheers.
    On the chance that you still check this thread, do you have any supplemental material in particular that you recommend? I have a lot of free time for practice lately, so am working through the book as quickly as possible. I ordered the Modern Method Jazz Songbook, so for the time being that will be my supplemental work once it arrives. Do you think that + MM1 is sufficient?