1. #1

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    what jazz guitar method do you recommend meto start learning chord melody/ comping?

    I found some interesting books on amazon. However would like toi heard some recommendations to see what would be the best option to get started

    Martin Taylor Complete Jazz Method CompilationSorry! Something went wrong!

    Andrew Green Jazz Guitar Comping
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    Mel Bay Book: Guitar Melody Chord System

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    Mikey Baker Volume 1:

    1)Do you suggest me one of these? Or maybe another one?
    2) Is the comping the same than chord melody?

    Thanks a lot


    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
  3. #2

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    Chord melody is like soloing using chords - either alone, or in a duo, or a band, but you are leading, musically out front.
    Comping is short for accompanying - always doing it for someone else in the band who is soloing, so holding back.
    So chord melody and comping are different roles, but all you know about chords is used for both, in different ways.

    I'm self taught, so I'm not a good one to answer about methods, books, and systems.

  4. #3
    I see the difference now, so as a beginner using chords (always improvised using one note solo) whats is better to start with? Comping or chord melody/walking bass

  5. #4

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    Might be easier to start with chord melody; you learn the chords in various forms, and you learn to integrate the melody lines, voicing.
    Comping can be practiced, but the real way to learn that is in a band comping for a soloist - it is more interactive, listening, supporting.

  6. #5

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    Forgive me if I've judged wrong and this stuff is too simple.

    Look at 'Rhythm Guitar the Ranger Doug Way.'
    This low-priced book shows how Doug Green uses mostly 3-note voicings
    for his ryhthm work. Three-note voicings are very useful & often preferable supporting an ensemble.

    Whit Smith of the 'hot Club of Cowtown' is all over Youtube and has his own channel.
    Smith uses many voicings of the same or nearly the same chord to provide a lot of
    movement & color to rhythm work. Smith also sells some instructional stuff.

    Here is a link to a convenient guitar chord encyclopedia.
    If you can knock out a I-iv-ii-V on a given string group (say 4-3-2-1 for instance)
    you get pretty much perfect voice leading. There used to be a video of Jack Wilkins
    warming up on this on Youtube. This is academic study (a lot!) but useful, like scales.


    With luck you end up in this neighborhood:

    John Pizzarelli teaches I got rhythm

  7. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by fingernylon

    what jazz guitar method do you recommend me to start learning chord melody/ comping?

    You have probably deduced from some of the comments in your other thread that you are an unusual guitarist (basically, that you have surprisingly good technical chops playing single note lines and phrases without the usual accompanying facility of chord playing, or the usual more structural song based approach).

    When I began teaching myself the guitar I had played the clarinet for eight years already, so with the combination of wanting to play "lead guitar" and having played the clarinet "one note at a time", my approach was also similarly unusual. I decided from day one to play the guitar by ear and learn to play lead first, rather than the usual way of starting with chords. I did not start playing chords until about two years later, and what I discovered was that it was easy after having just played notes. Chords made surprising sense to me and I could make my own chords as needed just based on my ear and my grasp of the finger board from single note playing.

    Post #15 by KirkP in this thread posted some basic jazz chord diagrams that you might examine. I think you might begin by just playing their notes first to hear their sounds, and I think your fingers will find how to form them easily. Depending on your ear, recognition of those sounds and their corresponding fingerings may allow you to begin working up tunes (existing standards or your own compositions). Whether you teach yourself, use method books, or take lessons, it's really ultimately all about focus on learning tunes.

    Everything you want to be able to do is in the songs you want to be able to play, right?

  8. #7

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    I have found videos way more useful for comping, in fact more useful for learning pretty much anything on the guitar. Getting to see another guitarist's fingers and chord shapes on the fretboard is 100 times more instructive I find.

    I've found Vinny Raniolo's videos useful (rhythm guitar on three strings; and his walking bass lesson). His rhythm guitar playing really swings.

    There's some video previews of Martin Taylor's Truefire courses you can find on YouTube which are also very good.

    There's a book called 'Swing & Big Band Guitar' which is about nothing but Freddie Green style 4-to-the-bar comping. It does come with audio examples, which is critical in my opinion as you have to hear this stuff played otherwise the risk is you just play a very boring unswinging, lifeless 4 strokes to the bar.

    Anyway, that's comping.

    Chord melody is different. It is essentially 'solo guitar playing'. Playing the melody line but with chordal self-accompaniment. Lots of videos out on this out there in YouTube-land. And indeed on this site: go to the 'Chord Melody' section and have a look at different people's videos.

    I've found Fred Sokolow's book 'Building a Jazz Chord Solo' very useful. But also Sokolow's various videos (on youtube and guitarvideos.com) e bar.
    Last edited by Matt Milton; 07-08-2020 at 11:04 AM.