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  1. #1

    Suggest recordings that illustrate predominantly chord-tone vs chord-scale approach?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    here's a famous solo that is the first thing that comes to mind when I hear "chord-tone" solo
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  3. #3
    Bearing in mind that a lot of chord-scale solos are centred round chord tones by default. I mean, running C mixo or C dom bebop over C7/9/11/13 is going to give you a chord tone every other note, can't help it.

    Or do you mean, literally, only chord tones?

  4. #4
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    I mean you could get it in one solo: Adam Rogers on Dexterity

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    Suggest recordings that illustrate predominantly chord-tone vs chord-scale approach?

    Btw no bopper or harmonic eta jazzer plays only chord tones. But there’s a difference between scales and chord scales.... and a grey area in between!

  6. #6
    Thanks. Can you suggest a Body and Soul solo that is predominantly a chord-scale approach?

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by paulcw16 View Post
    Thanks. Can you suggest a Body and Soul solo that is predominantly a chord-scale approach?
    do you mean like modes and shit?
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  8. #8
    this starting around 2:30 maybe..not sure I'm old school
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  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    Btw no bopper or harmonic eta jazzer plays only chord tones. But there’s a difference between scales and chord scales.... and a grey area in between!
    Well like many things "chord-scale theory", that depends on who you ask. Hal Crooks seems to think there is no difference:
    Berklee Today | Berklee College of Music

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tal_175 View Post
    Well like many things "chord-scale theory", that depends on who you ask. Hal Crooks seems to think there is no difference:
    Berklee Today | Berklee College of Music
    I don't really care what he thinks :-)

    Seriously, there's a grey area. Perhaps Hal is correct. But if by scales we mean the narrow traditional meaning:

    1) Things going up and down by step

    Which something you can hear right away, or see in a transcription.

    as opposed to a chord/scale:

    2) A collection of notes that can be used as a type of organisation related to an underlying harmony ... or something?

    A bit more analytical anyway.

    There is rather a lot of 1) even in early jazz.

    So you have scalar movement in pretty much ALL jazz improvisation as well as chord tones. One of the first things to jump out at me about Bird, for instance. But also true of anyone you can name in the history of... well... music.

    Now using scales to highlight specific chord tones in rhythmic space ... that's a good skill to acquire....
    Last edited by christianm77; 11-07-2018 at 06:26 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by paulcw16 View Post
    Thanks. Can you suggest a Body and Soul solo that is predominantly a chord-scale approach?
    Tis a really tricky one to answer, because you can do a chord scale analysis on almost anything.

    That's not to say that's what the player was thinking. Burton is an adroit choice because he was a populariser of the chord scale (CST) approach. So he DOES think that way, at least sometimes, without question.

    Very few jazz players articulate the changes exactly as written (OK it's more like NONE) so as soon as someone plays a substitute there is a potential chord scale description of that, alongside more traditional/old school descriptions.

    For instance, play Am(maj7) on D7 - like Parker - you can see/hear that as Lydian Dominant. Now I'm pretty sure Bird was thinking A minor on D7, but it's an interpretation you can make, and who's to say it's wrong?

    What makes a CST player?

    Sooo - what I think of as CST based playing is kind of an accent in a player that you can pick up on. From what I have transcribed and listened to:

    * Modern CST players seem to be quite interested in how the melody relates to the chords and how this can be used in combination with chord scales to organise pitch choice in soloing. Someone like Bird doesn't really seem to care about that - he just plays over the basic chord colour/sound and extends or subs it as he wishes.

    Joe Pass used to say everything was either major, minor or dominant, and I can imagine Parker dealing with harmony like this. A CST guy will go into a lot more detail.

    * They tend to make certain orthodox and 'correct' scale choices on chords based on that understanding, unless they are subbing. So a CST player - in contrast to Bird - will favour Ab7#11 (lyd dom) in Cherokee instead of just playing generic Ab7 stuff, for instance.

    * They don't tend to use the old school technique of using added notes in lines to outline basic chord sounds (so called bebop scales - actually go back to the 1920s and earlier) that therefore the scales are more colouristic rather than locked in harmonically even when played stepwise - and most obviously in the use of intervallic or 'modern' figurations of chord/scales.

    That's because in the older music scales had harmonic and non-harmonic notes, and there was a rhythmic importance to the harmonic notes. In a chord scale, any note that isn't an 'avoid' note can be featured harmonically.

    (* This has a effect on phrasing, feel, accentuation and the way lines work rhythmically.)

    It's a flavour I tend to pick up right away in someone's playing - probably sounds more technical than it is.

    Someone like Bill Evans is kind of on the cusp - he'd had a heavy background in bop and many of his lines are rooted in this idiom, at least early on, but he is also exploring more of these melodic minor modes and so on.

    But it's not an easy thing to put in black and white - here is a modern style CST player and here is a chord tone player - I use a mix for instance as many players do, and there are steps in the evolution in jazz between those two points. As far as I'm able to determine CST didn't even exist in its modern form in the late 50s/early 60s when BE was reinventing jazz harmony.... The Lydian Chromatic method is an early precursor.
    Last edited by christianm77; 11-07-2018 at 06:57 PM.

  12. #12
    Personally, to me it's just music and it either works or doesn't.

  13. #13
    There's another related thread here:

    Tunes that outline the chords with arpeggio

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    My attempt to demonstrate the difference

    Quite hard to do this for me!

    I'm aware that this is a bit of a extreme case - most players use a combination. Although I think of Kurt Rosenwinkel as leaning more CST, for instance, and less bop...


  15. #15
    Honestly, if it sounds like scales, it's probably a shitty solo anyway.
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  16. #16
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    For me, chord tone playing is just a mind set. When I'm "chord tone" playing I'm just aware of where the chord tones are.

    You can end up with the same line while thinking CST or thinking Chord Tone. However, the primary difference for me is I end up with a lot more chromatic stuff when thinking Chord Tone.
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  17. #17
    This seems like a good exercise.

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  18. #18
    In that article Hal Crook is talking about a chord scale "approach" - but as used by beginning and intermediate improvisation students. So does that mean advanced/pro improvisers don't use a chord scale approach? If not, then there really is no issue, is there?


    A few other questions come to mind:
    1. Didn't post-bop usher in modal tunes and playing?
    2. If yes, wasn't that done at least partially to allow an improviser to stretch out and not be constrained by fidelity to a fast harmonic rhythm?
    3. What percentage of pro jazz players and recording artists since 1965 were/are still hell bent on aping Bird?
    4. How would Bird approach soloing on So What and Impressions?
    5. Was Trane a CST weenie?
    6. Trane's solo on Naima sounds like he used a lot of scale passages (because he did). So does that make it a "shitty solo"?



    Last edited by Jazzstdnt; 11-09-2018 at 02:24 AM.

  19. #19
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    Suggest recordings that illustrate predominantly chord-tone vs chord-scale approach?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jazzstdnt View Post
    In that article Hal Crook is talking about a chord scale "approach" - but as used by beginning and intermediate improvisation students. So does that mean advanced/pro improvisers don't use a chord scale approach? If not, then there really is no issue, is there?


    A few other questions come to mind:
    1. Didn't post-bop usher in modal tunes and playing?
    2. If yes, wasn't that done at least partially to allow an improviser to stretch out and not be constrained by fidelity to a fast harmonic rhythm?
    3. What percentage of pro jazz players and recording artists since 1965 were/are still hell bent on aping Bird?
    4. How would Bird approach soloing on So What and Impressions?
    5. Was Trane a CST weenie?
    6. Trane's solo on Naima sounds like he used a lot of scale passages (because he did). So does that make it a "shitty solo"?



    Players teach CST concepts at all levels. Whether or not it’s the way they think I have no flipping idea. Usually cst players sound a certain way - see above.

    1) sure

    2) most players on changes weren’t as free as bird rhythmically its true

    3) No one has successfully even imitated Bird, that’s the joke. They might get the notes but the invention and swing are unique. Prob best to give up, but it’s addictive.

    The best second gen bop players took bits of Bird and formed there own language out of it. Even today, most really good jazz players in any style have gone through their Bird phase, usually earlier rather than later.

    4) he would approached them a little like Cannonball? Bird would have no problem, I think. Probably play his usual harmonic invisible paths and incredible rhythmic structures over the top and sound amazing and better than everyone else as usual.

    5) I don’t know what weenie means. I don’t think CST really existed back then but did he read George Russell?

    6) you know a lot of bop era players could NOT hear Trane. Barney Kessell for instance, even the early stuff. Trane is a different thing.

    Trane could play a slow build solo on the minor pentatonic scale for 5 minutes and not sound boring. He can do many things that would make most of us look ridiculous.

    Scale lines in jazz? They are everywhere. But never or very rarely in isolation.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Jazzstdnt View Post
    Was Trane a CST weenie
    According to wikipedia page of Lydian chromatic tonal organization, yes:
    "In arguably his most famous piece, "Giant Steps," Coltrane can be heard traveling through a succession of three parent Lydian Chromatic scales: C Lydian, A? Lydian, and E Lydian."

  21. #21
    Here is my understanding of all this:
    Chord-scale means chord tone = scale tone. Every chord is seen as vertical realization of a 7 or 8 note linear structure and vice versa.
    So the true non-cst, chord tone based music was swing, Dixieland and gypsy jazz where there was a clear distinction between scale and chord tones. Melodies were based on primary chord tones. (non chord tone) Scale tones were treated as passing tones or fast passages.
    Bebop is actually CST based on the definition above. They didn't call it that because the term didn't exist which is not important. It is CST because chord extensions were emphasized. They were not passing tones but melody notes in solos. So all scale notes were treated as chord tones.
    Post bop took this a little further and treated modal moments in tunes as opportunities to imply different harmonic relationships. Say if there is an area with two bars of a dominant chord that don't resolve, 4th can be sharpened. But that's melodic minor (a mode of it) which means the whole thing can be shifted to melodic minor harmony by implying other chords diatonic to melodic minor judiciously.
    Disclaimer: I only studied and played in the styles of bebop and hard bop at this point. My understanding of pre and post bop is based on listening to music in these styles and hearing/reading experienced players in these styles talk about how they approach things.
    Last edited by Tal_175; 11-09-2018 at 01:08 PM.

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    And yet as you know Barry Harris’s understanding of bop is based around scales. That surprised me a lot, but now I understand the value of it.

    There’s some overlap with standard CST choices but some differences too, if we compare to something like the Levine Jazz Theory book

    Hence I don’t think chord scale and scales necessarily are the same thing.

    Furthermore swing era players like Lester do play chord tones but they also take quite a generalised diatonic view of the changes. They don’t play all the chords.

    I think it’s more accurate to say earlier jazz is more key centric, bebop started to dig into the secondary dominants and modulations within the key, and cst takes this tendency further.

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    Guitarists did tend play out of the shapes tho

  24. #24
    Even though CST appears to be a theoretically descriptive name for certain styles of post bop jazz, I think a big part of the CST and bebop distinction is also in the language.

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    Suggest recordings that illustrate predominantly chord-tone vs chord-scale approach?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tal_175 View Post
    Even though CST appears to be a theoretically descriptive name for certain styles of post bop jazz, I think a big part of the CST and bebop distinction is also in the language.
    CST can describe some of the harmony. Can’t describe the language though so most teachers tell students to cop and transpose ii v licks.

    This worked pretty well for many of the 2nd gen guys actually. It’s not itself a bad thing.

    But whose licks were Bird and Diz playing?

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    But whose licks were Bird and Diz playing?
    some ancient astronaut theorists suggest they were visited by otherworldly beings
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  27. #27
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    Suggest recordings that illustrate predominantly chord-tone vs chord-scale approach?

    Another thing that springs to mind - look at a page of Parker on Rhythm changes or something and aside from passing tones and chromatic voiceleading from V to I, and the odd reference to ivm or the blues, what you have is pretty diatonic to the key. Where divergences from this are likely to happen is in the bridge. This is similar to Charlie Christian or Lester Young’s practice.

    It’s rare I feel the need to analyse Parker using CST - he does do a few things like for instance use the Am(maj7) sound on D7.... D7 Lyd Dom. I would interpret that more as Parker thinking minor on dominant though, already a very common strategy by the swing era.

    The natural 11 is used as commonly if not more so. I think many CST guys separate ii and v though so maybe they would see that as a prolongation of the ii chord or whatever. I prefer to throw out the avoid note rule and just think of scales of V and arps. It’s a matter of preference.

    One harmonic stylistic feature of Parker that I don’t hear in earlier improvisers is the way he will almost invariably reference b9 on a VI7 chord.

    In fact one thing you can do to make yourself sound pre bop is to use the natural 9 here - much more common for Django, Prez and Charlie Christian for instance.

    With someone like Bill Evans it’s a bit different.

  28. #28
    I haven't done much analysis of pre-bebop jazz but I hear a certain "sweetness" in Django, CC or Dixieland that I associate with the use of a lot of primary chord tones (with embellishments). Did they use upper extensions on down beats like bebop and onwards?

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post

    But whose licks were Bird and Diz playing?
    Play back at 1.5 times speed




    Oh, and don't land on the root of the chord as often.
    Jeff Matz, Jazz Guitar:
    http://www.youtube.com/user/jeffreymatz

    "Jazz is like life...it goes on longer than you think, and as soon as you're like 'oh, I get it,' it ends."

    --The Ghost of Duke Ellington

  30. #30
    All of this is very interesting. There is only one little problem:

    There is no such thing as a "CST player", as apart from a modern jazz player.


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