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  1. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple_Jazz
    Things Ain’t What They Used to Be in F

    All critiques welcome. I hope to post another later in the week with an added element.

    Nice and swinging. I like the combination of single note lines interspersed with chord moves.

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #27

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    We have some heavy rain here so it's quite dark. Here's a quick and first take with no backing:



  4. #28

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    Picking up the minor blues idea from John:



  5. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1
    This cut sounds really cool. You have some note/scale choices that I can’t put my finger(ear) on, something going on there that sounds totally cool and different! Something I’d like to get into my playing. I hear a minor blues with a locrian kinda sound, is that it?

  6. #30

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    Putting my minor blues into the mix too. Here’s a clip from about two months ago with a trio in the basement.

  7. #31

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    I just fired up a backing track and did this. A kind of opening bargaining position...



    EDIT: I forgot to include--but I'm always open to any helpful observations, insights, suggestions, whatever. It's why I post.
    Last edited by lawson-stone; 06-07-2021 at 10:33 AM.

  8. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple_Jazz
    This cut sounds really cool. You have some note/scale choices that I can’t put my finger(ear) on, something going on there that sounds totally cool and different! Something I’d like to get into my playing. I hear a minor blues with a locrian kinda sound, is that it?
    I can't remember! Hang on...

    Well, I wanted this to be as simple as possible but, analysing it now, apparently not. The chords were simple: Cm7, Fm7, Ab7b5, G7, that's all. But the notes came from all sorts of things...technically.

    I say technically because I wasn't really thinking in terms of this scale, that scale, most of the time. There were some places I put in an altered note over the G7 and played the Cm as a melodic minor. That was probably pretty obvious. I just played it as I heard it at the time. That's why I don't remember.

    But, analytically (I've had to play it back), it went something like this - technically. I stress this because analysing it makes it look like you need a computer brain but it's not like that all, you just play the sounds.

    Cm7 - C harm, C dorian (Bb), Cm pent, C mel (m6). I used the 9 a lot (D) and once emphasised the 11 (F).

    Fm7 - Fm pent, Fm blues, F dorian (Eb).

    Ab7b5 - Ab7b5 arp, Eb mel (includes the b5 (D)),

    G7 - C harm, G7alt (Ab mel).

    But you have to remember it's all mixed up a lot. There might be, say, a bit of C dorian and Cm6 in the same bar. It's really a question of knowing what notes are available, what they sound like, and using them.

    I can tell you one thing I didn't do quite deliberately and that was play C7, or C7alt, in bar 4. I tried it but I thought it got away from the basic minor sound. For the same reason I didn't go back to G7 at the end for a t/around, I just carried on the Cm7. I also tried playing it with sus chords (Cm11, Fm11) but didn't like it.

    But thanks for your interest, hope that answers it. Sorry, it got complicated, it was supposed to be so simple!

  9. #33

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    TOMMO - I hope you got all that. Never work it backwards!

  10. #34

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    I recorded these 2 Blues tunes for the jazzguitar.be forum's weekly jam. One is based on Sonny Rollins' Decision, a take on a minor blues that is, I think, 13 bars in length. The other one is Julian Lage's Boos Blues which I've been working on since he first played it on Youtube. Enjoy!

    Soundcloud decided to make the two tunes a playlist. You probably need to open a new window. Hope that's okay for y'all.



    The tracks also gave me a chance to do try out my new Quilter Superblock, in the mail today. Love it. More on the Quilter Superblock thread.

  11. #35

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    Listening to all the great tracks, there is one thing I notice

    Playing the blues makes us all playing our fave blues licks. That's perfectly alright, but reminds me of a scene in Tremé where Antoine Battiste tells one of his young pupils: "You've played every lick you know. Now the next time, go and play the melody."

    I know that's hard to do, especially when not having a melody to play on - one of the reasons I chose these particular tunes was that that they have, if not a melody, then at least some memorable phrases that are characteristical for them, and which I tried to play off of.

    Any thoughts on that?

  12. #36

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    Docsteve,

    That's actually something I struggled with for quite some time, playing off a blues head and making each blues improvisation sound like the blues song it was based upon. One of my teachers really stressed the AAB lyrical form of the blues. Said the same thing, the blues is more than a bunch of licks thrown together. He's also the teacher that got me listening to more Bill Jennings and early Billy Butler, so he knew a thing or two about real deal blues. Music is a story, and the best way to practice telling a story is to practice playing some blues.

    I gotta say... whew... these blues you've all been posting... they are giving me the FEELS!

    Great stuff all around. We got us some Grant Green, Kenny Burrell, BB King, Basie, type gumbo brewing around these parts. I was waiting for Mr. B to call a session like this for a WHILE! Bout time, Mr. B!

    I'll post soon. I got them job blues that I need to get outta my system. We all got that Pandemic Blues to shake off. Well chosen. Can we keep this going for 2 weeks instead of 1? There's so much to mine with the Blues form, so much the Blues can teach us all.

    Had myself a playlist of over 1,000 blues tunes from my iTunes library. Jazz Blues, Blues Blues, it's all real similar the more you listen. iTunes has been a real jerk as of late, but I guess I have time to rebuild that playlist for the THIRD TIME! Might post some of the more interesting cuts to our Bluesy thread we've got cooking? Slow burn? Simmer? Boil? It's all good

  13. #37

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    This is my first time taking part in this thread... here are two unaccompanied choruses of a blues.




    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro

  14. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by docsteve
    Listening to all the great tracks, there is one thing I notice

    Playing the blues makes us all playing our fave blues licks. That's perfectly alright, but reminds me of a scene in Tremé where Antoine Battiste tells one of his young pupils: "You've played every lick you know. Now the next time, go and play the melody."

    I know that's hard to do, especially when not having a melody to play on - one of the reasons I chose these particular tunes was that that they have, if not a melody, then at least some memorable phrases that are characteristical for them, and which I tried to play off of.

    Any thoughts on that?
    Oh, plenty.

    This came up some time ago when I brought up the very thing you're describing. Unfortunately I can't remember which thread it was otherwise I'd link to it. But the gist of it was that I said just learning a bunch of licks wasn't a good thing.

    Of course, the world and his wife descended on me and told me copying licks was one of the best ways to learn. But they hadn't understood what I said correctly. I'm not against licks per se, I'm against depending on them for soloing purposes. Say someone puts a lead sheet in front of you and says 'play over that' and you think 'OMG, I haven't got any licks for that!' you're stuffed.

    So the solution is not to just copy a lot of licks but to understand the principle behind how they work and be able to apply them. Then you can make your own licks on the spot whatever the circumstances.

    Say you want to make altered sounds over a dominant. You might know a lick or two to do that but that's not the same as understanding what makes a dominant chord sound out. But if you know where to find your b5, #5, b9 and #9 and fit them in and resolve them, problem solved. Better still, learn your altered scales, whole tone scales, tritones, etc, etc.

    So I'm not against licks but one should understand them, not just imitate them without that understanding, that's all.

  15. #39

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    Once more into the breach ...



    I know weren't supposed to do anything too involved for this, but ... I recently got a U-bass (bass ukulele, whatever you call these things ...), which I used on the vocal tune I dropped upthread. I had in mind to do a jazz tune with it because it can get an almost upright like sound, and I have a pretty good set of live drum loops. So I put together a backing track, figuring I'd probably get several uses out of the drum part, and I'd figure out how to get decent jazz bass sound for reference. Then I recorded an archtop part, but I didn't like it. I didn't want to go down the rabbit hole of trying to get a perfect take, so I put it aside.

    Then this morning, I thought "wait a second, U-bass, guitelele, gotta do that." And then "wait a second, GJ guitar would go way better with that than an electric guitar ..." And then "wait a second, how about harmonizing the melody". And then. "wait a second, it would be cool to figure out how to get both parts into one video ..." And down the rabbit hole I went. The actual playing/recording didn't take very long, but mixing, video glitches/false starts, and editing it all together took a good couple of hours.

    Who knows? Maybe by the end of this week I'll finally do an actual straightahead jazz blues ... or come up with some more class-clown hijinks ...

    Regarding vocals -- I've always sung, but secondary to playing and mainly because, well, somebody's gotta do it, but I enjoy it. Also, I really do feel that you can't play blues unless you also sing to some degree. Not necessarily in public, but it's essential to understanding the genre (both jazz blues and blues blues), and doing it makes you a better player.

    Everybody is sounding great this week.

    EDIT: I add some more bass to the mix because you could barely hear the bass in the video upload. Youtube doesn't let you replace a video, though. You can only delete the old and do a whole new upload, so this is a new URL.
    Last edited by John A.; 06-06-2021 at 07:33 PM.

  16. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by John A.

    Regarding vocals -- I've always sung, but secondary to playing and mainly because, well, somebody's gotta do it, but I enjoy it. Also, I really do feel that you can't play blues unless you also sing to some degree. Not necessarily in public, but it's essential to understanding the genre (both jazz blues and blues blues), and doing it makes you a better player.
    About singing, 100% YES!

    I used to sing in high school. SELECT Chorus... whatever the hell that meant Apparently, I was a baritone. Who knows. Fun as hell trying to scat through "Steam Heat" and "Blue Moon" like Louis Armstrong. My classmates share my "enthusiasm" for the jazz tunes we sang. I couldn't do jazzband that year, so I had to get my kicks somehow

    I use it to internalize sounds in my head when I practice these days. I sing 3rds and root movements in the songs I am currently working on to get the sound of the tune thoroughly engrained in my inner ear.

    Sang once or twice at a jazz jam. It's a lot harder than it looks... Gotta remember to sing from the diaphragm and such...

    Really dug that blues vocal you did on that earlier take.

    Rag, my frustration about talking about licks with theory in the forefront is that you risk over analyzing to the point that you separate yourself from the most important element of music: the sounds. That was the same frustration I had in college, too much theory and not enough time spent on how to hear it, sing it, and internalize it all.

    Not saying that's what you are implying, that's just where I come from. From what you play, I can tell that you are focusing in on interesting sounds and locking on to them with your ears. Playing completely acoustic like you do takes guts; it's harder than it looks. My frustration is more with jazz pedagogy and how it often surfaces on the internet, like on our forum here.

    A 100 page dissertation won't help me use those sounds if I can't hear them first. That's why I humor myself with my crappy voice and sing, sing, sing.

    I'm waiting with baited breath for the old "what world do you live on?" to come and visit. King Lear, Hamlet, who knows So far, I've been lucky.
    Last edited by PickingMyEars; 06-05-2021 at 09:41 PM.

  17. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vladan
    Backing track by Oily Wrag

    Vladan, I really liked your interpretation of the Blues. So different from what I am used to hearing and so unique, but enjoyable to my ears.

    Hearing you step forward during a Blues Jam and take your turn to solo, I bet you would have the audience looking up and taking note. If they were like me, they would be trying to discern what you were "saying," and you would keep them guessing, never letting them figure you out.

    I have really learned to appreciate what each musician has to say, and its nice to hear a slightly different voice and style, amid the more traditional sounds.
    Last edited by AlsoRan; 06-11-2021 at 10:47 PM.

  18. #42

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    Wow. What a great thread! Each and every post was entertaining, with all the different approaches and the ability to intersperse chords effectively!

    I was trying to listen for possible scales that were being used. Some seemed to be using more traditional Blues Scales, while others were beyond my being able to figure out.

    Sadly, as much as I have learned using Mixolydian modes/scales (over the Dom7 chords), I am really just happy with the basic Blues Scale with those ninths thrown in, and a good measure of repetition and restraint. Let's me know that I may have been practicing the wrong thing and should have must followed my ears a bit more mixing it all up.

    Bravo to all! Keep expressing your unique voices.

  19. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by John A.
    Once more into the breach ...
    Fantastic John!

  20. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by John A.
    I really do feel that you can't play blues unless you also sing to some degree. Not necessarily in public, but it's essential to understanding the genre (both jazz blues and blues blues), and doing it makes you a better player.
    Quite right, it definitely helps. Nicely played, by the way


  21. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan
    Vladan, I really liked your interpretation ....
    Thank You. You are too kind.

    My Band camp

  22. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1
    Quite right, it definitely helps. Nicely played, by the way

    Rag's, I'd listen to a whole album of you playing and singing like that.

    Mighty fine voice as well. Fits into my own folk and blues sensibilities. Pentangle, Nick Drake, and Davey Graham...

    Never knew so many of you all sang, where were you all when I was making an ass of myself singing earlier on in the jam

  23. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by John A.
    Regarding vocals I really do feel that you can't play blues unless you also sing to some degree.
    Well I do sing (to some degree) but I may better spare you from having to listen to it...


    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1


    Very very nice and what pleasant voice. Suits that song well!

  24. #48

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    Allow me to post two more entries recorded this afternoon:







    I'm open to any comments, critique and suggestions as always.

  25. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1
    Quite right, it definitely helps. Nicely played, by the way

    Yeah! Sounds great. Now we'll have to call you Ragtime Man.
    Last edited by John A.; 06-07-2021 at 08:32 AM.

  26. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by TOMMO
    Allow me to post two more entries recorded this afternoon:







    I'm open to any comments, critique and suggestions as always.
    Sounds great, Tommo. Great feel on Chitlins, and West Coast Blues is a really tricky tune that you breezed through. Well done.
    Last edited by John A.; 06-06-2021 at 01:38 PM.