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  1. #1

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    Looking for a jazz guitar study book that thoroughly introduce a bit of everything, chord, scales, melody, etc.. I'm likely a beginner to intermediate in my playing ability. Any recomendations?

    Thanks,
    Zach

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    A Modern Method For Guitar

  4. #3

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    The honest truth us that those topics are usually broken down, and a group of books is probably a much better way to go.

    That's true regardless of style, too. The idea of a "complete instrument XYZ method" is understandable from a desire perspective, but doesn't exist in the real world.

    So maybe look at it like the following: (not necessarily in this order):

    1. Reading
    2. Tunes/repertoire
    3. Chords/Comping
    4. Scales
    5. Arpeggios
    6. Improvisation
    7. Solo Guitar/Chord Melody

  5. #4

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    For an overview, you may like to check out Jeff Schroedel's Jazz Guitar: A Comprehensive Guide with Step-by-Step Instruction and Over 20 Great Jazz Classics (Hal Leonard):

    Hal Leonard Guitar Method – Jazz Guitar - Hal Leonard Guitar Method Stylistic Supplement | Hal Leonard Online

    Despite its subtitle, Schroedl's book isn't really a step-by-step instruction but rather a smorgasbord of history, concepts and techniques. If you're looking for the former, Randy Vincent's The Guitarist's Introduction to Jazz is hard to beat:

    https://www.shermusic.com/9780997661743.php

  6. #5

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    Those look pretty good. So many good jazz books.

    friendly reminder- the owner of this very site has materials for the beginning jazz guitarist!!!

  7. #6

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    Both jazzguitar.be's The Beginner's Guide to Jazz Guitar, a free PDF, and Jane Miller's, Introduction to Jazz Guitar, a book for sale, have a lot in them – all you need to start.

  8. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by zkinard View Post
    Looking for a jazz guitar study book that thoroughly introduce a bit of everything, chord, scales, melody, etc.. I'm likely a beginner to intermediate in my playing ability. Any recomendations?

    Thanks,
    Zach
    This book appears to fit your needs. I have it and it is very well done. Just the right amount of info on everything you cite above. HOWEVER while there are chord grids there is no TAB. Just standard notation. It is my humble opinion that if you are serious about the study of guitar playing, music and especially something as involved as jazz; the ability to read standard notation is essential. Perhaps the author felt the same way.

    https://www.amazon.com/Guitarists-In.../dp/0997661747

  9. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by alltunes View Post
    This book appears to fit your needs. I have it and it is very well done. Just the right amount of info on everything you cite above. HOWEVER while there are chord grids there is no TAB. Just standard notation. It is my humble opinion that if you are serious about the study of guitar playing, music and especially something as involved as jazz; the ability to read standard notation is essential. Perhaps the author felt the same way.

    https://www.amazon.com/Guitarists-In.../dp/0997661747
    Plus one on this, I've got tons of others, but this one is at the top of my list.

  10. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by zkinard View Post
    Looking for a jazz guitar study book that thoroughly introduce a bit of everything, chord, scales, melody, etc.. I'm likely a beginner to intermediate in my playing ability. Any recomendations?

    Thanks,
    Zach

    whatever book you choose..your knowledge of triads ( all types) and their inversions on all strings sets along with your knowledge of diatonic harmony will help you alot

    also this stuff will take some time to digest..make some backing tracks if you can .. or better yet ..other musicians/guitarists to play with so this stuff has musical life and not just exercises

  11. #10

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    I think Mark Levine's Jazz Theory is an excellent resource for anybody trying to learn jazz.

    Prior threads are replete with criticisms, but IMO this is an extremely well-written book.

    It presents the material very clearly, in plain English and with multiple examples, which are helpful if you can hack your way through a few bars of standard keyboard notation. There's enough white space on each page that it doesn't seem overwhelmingly dense (I think the layout is helpful).

    Is there a better book? I haven't seen one, but I haven't seen all that many. I think Nettles and Graf may be easier once you've read Levine.

    Since the book isn't about guitar, there are issues of interest to the guitarist which it doesn't address.

    But, I think it's a great resource for the budding jazz player.

    I have the usual shelves of books that guitarists accumulate. Only a few strike me, in retrospect, has having impacted my playing. Bear in mind, though, that I wasn't a beginner when I acquired some of them -- maybe they'd have been more important if I'd had them years before.

    Jazz Theory by Levine
    Several of Warren Nunes' books
    Brazilian Guitar by Nelson Faria (this is a specialized topic, not a general info book, but you can actually learn the style from this book).
    The Real Book
    Rhythms Complete by Colin and Bower -- the book that I learned to read from, after Mel Bay Vol II.

  12. #11

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    Hello, i own at least a few of these books and have discovered that buying jazz guitar books does not make one a better player. If one book didn't produce instant gratification it was the wrong book. It took a few years to figure that out. For me, i would play the first exercise until i could remember it then start playing it against loops and then backing tracks without going to the next exercise until the first one sounded like music, not like some exercise out of a book. If my sweetie said it sounds nice, i could move to the next exercise. This produced the results that just playing through a new book and saying ok , i can do that did not produce. At this time the only 2 books i have out are the All the shapes you are book and the Sweet and Lowdown soundtrack book. Best Wishes on your journey !

  13. #12

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    Agreed. It's more like a course of study, and books are a useful tool.

    Or can be. There are obviously other ways to go.

    But - we now have many books that the greats didn't have, and the kicker is - the greats wrote some of them.

  14. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by zkinard View Post
    Looking for a jazz guitar study book that thoroughly introduce a bit of everything, chord, scales, melody, etc.. I'm likely a beginner to intermediate in my playing ability. Any recomendations?

    Thanks,
    Zach
    if you can already play guitar I like Randy Vincent the Guitarist’s Introduction to Jazz

  15. #14
    And how about any recommendations for learning to read. This isn't something I've endeavored so far in my playing but feeling like it's worth taking up the challenge, so it would be starting from ground zero with reading.

  16. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by zkinard View Post
    And how about any recommendations for learning to read. This isn't something I've endeavored so far in my playing but feeling like it's worth taking up the challenge, so it would be starting from ground zero with reading.
    https://www.halleonard.com/product/6...ing-for-guitar

  17. #16

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    This is the book many jazz players have used for learning to read: A Modern Method for Guitar: 123 Complete - guitar, guitar book, leavitt, modern method guitar, guitar chord, guitar scales it is very thorough.

  18. #17

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    To learn to read:

    A beginner's series like Mel Bay's. First two volumes. You learn where the notes are on the staff and the fingerboard in first position. You learn how to move up the neck on a single string, correctly naming each note. You need to know how to read whole notes, half notes, quarter notes, eighth notes and rests of each value.

    Then, Colin and Bower, Rhythms Complete. Figure out how to play the first exercise in the first position. Then, figure out how to play it -- reading, not by memory -- an octave higher. Do everything as written, then an octave higher. Then do each version (original octave, and octave up) somewhere else on the neck.

    By then, you'll know the fingerboard and the staff and you'll be able to read any note in different octaves, which is a very useful skill. You'll also have basic syncopation and be able to read in multiple keys. Don't overlook the 12th position.

    What you won't have from Colin and Bower is any prescribed fingerings. Maybe Leavitt would be better for that -- I don't know because I never used it, but many speak highly of it.

    Back in the day, I recall working through Paganini Moto Perpetuo with my teacher, Sid Margolis. It's one way to get started on how to solve fingering/picking problems. We also played through a clarinet book. A book called Advanced Dance Rhythms. I got through the first half of Pasquale Bona's book on rhythmic articulation (or something) until it got overwhelming. We read melodies in the original Cardex fakebook. Nowadays there are probably more efficient methods.

    I'd say it's less than a year of work for somebody who can already play a little.

    At that point, you can read most of what you'll ever see in a fakebook. You'll be able, at least, to slowly decipher harder material.

    Then, if you want to be a sight-reading animal, you have to play in a horn band where the guitar is playing horn parts, not just chords.

  19. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by zkinard View Post
    And how about any recommendations for learning to read. This isn't something I've endeavored so far in my playing but feeling like it's worth taking up the challenge, so it would be starting from ground zero with reading.
    Here's a way to ease into it. Learn the lines and spaces on the staff and the time values of notes and rests. There are plenty of YouTube videos explaining this. You can drill yourself on recognizing notes on the staff with this game: Notably Quick Guitar

    Now start to decipher simple melodies from the Real Book. You can also find some old guitar method books like The Mickey Baker Book or anything that was published before Tab became popular and try to work thru them. Don't use anything that also shows the tab. You want standard notation only.

    I'm sure you know the note names on the 6th string which means you also know them on the 1st string. That's 33% of the fretboard. You can calculate the rest using octaves. You might even already know all the notes up to the 5th fret, but the area from the 5th to the 12 frets is where the problem is.

    Anyway, you read, find the notes on the fretboard and work out simple melodies in various positions. Do this 15-30 mins a day and you'll suddenly be able to find notes on the fretboard without thinking much about it.

    Don't over complicate it. Don't turn it into a grueling task that exhausts you and you give up after a week. A little bit everyday will lead to greater progress than spending a couple of hours on it once a week.