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  1. #151

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    Chromatic scale-it is also very interesting.
    I think it fits everywhere if it is used correctly.

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #152

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    Quote Originally Posted by kris
    Chromatic scale-it is also very interesting.
    I think it fits everywhere if it is used correctly.
    There is one powerful thought.

  4. #153

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    As someone who primarily picked up the guitar as an accompanying instrument (specifically, to accompany myself – or others –singing), I learned basic chords from beginning guitar books, learning Jimmy Crack Corn, Beautiful Brown Eyes, etc.

    I learn to read music at a young age (piano and french horn), but found playing by ear a much faster way to learn music. So I essentially abandoned reading music for the most part. After the age of 15, the guitar was my main instrument, with occasional forays into keyboards and string bass, spending a lot of my formative musical years playing bluegrass.

    Several years ago I put together a guitar trio, with two friends who knew nothing about theory or jazz – mostly rock and finger style guitarists; but my focus was on GASB. So I had to teach them these songs (after I learned them). My function as guitarist (I was the only singer in the group, unfortunately) was bass and rhythm, which was fine, since I was used to playing bluegrass and flat picking across all 6 strings. The other two played leads and, it turned out, inner voices.

    When we first started, I knew almost nothing about jazz voicings and chord spellings – I could play all those dim, aug, 9, m7b5 chords but didn't know what they were called, since I built them up from the bass by ear. So I would have the other two, when they weren't playing solos, only play partial chords that complemented each other. So I'd have one play an Am triad on the top 3 strings at the 5th fret, the other played a D-F#-C on the top 3 strings at the eighth fret, and I would play a classic folk-music C7 shape up two frets, with the top open, for a D9 chord with bass notes of F#, A, or D.

    I basically started thinking of these chords as simpler chords made more complicated by the bass note. An F#m7b5 was an Am with an F# in the bass, for example; a Bbm7b9 was a Dm with a Bb in the bass. But I also started realizing that an F#m7b5 was a D9 without the root note; and hey, it was also an Am6. So I was thinking about simple substitutions without knowing I was doing that, realizing that those chords I had built up using 5 or 6 strings could have different purposes using only 4 strings.

    The 7#11 was a big revelation to me – to realize that a chord I was playing in Ipanema, created by playing that old-favorite folk-music C7 with an Gb grabbed by thumb in the bass, actually had a name – Gb7#11. For me, in Ipanema, I was combining two methods of resolving to the tonic (F, in this case): the V chord, C7, and the bii, Gb. There was no real problem, since that particular inversion of the C7 on the guitar had no G (but – horrors! – two Cs).

    Another AHA! moment was realizing that if I moved that C7 shape up to its tritone, Gb, and grabbed the C with my thumb on the low E string, I had a C7#11, which sounded suspiciously like the Gb7#11. But I realized the limitation: if playing a C7 over the Gb, best to use a formulation of the C7 chord that leaves out the G; likewise, in the C7#11, leave out the Db in the Gb7 chord formulation.

    So, all along, I was thinking about the functions of these chords I was figuring out: Where is this chord going? or How do I want to approach that chord? without being at all aware of the theory behind it. I had learned basic classical theory, and actually love it, but hadn't been aware of jazz approaches to theory. I was working in a practical way, just figuring out easy musical solutions to what I heard.

  5. #154

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ukena
    As someone who primarily picked up the guitar as an accompanying instrument (specifically, to accompany myself – or others –singing), I learned basic chords from beginning guitar books, learning Jimmy Crack Corn, Beautiful Brown Eyes, etc.

    I learn to read music at a young age (piano and french horn), but found playing by ear a much faster way to learn music. So I essentially abandoned reading music for the most part. After the age of 15, the guitar was my main instrument, with occasional forays into keyboards and string bass, spending a lot of my formative musical years playing bluegrass.

    Several years ago I put together a guitar trio, with two friends who knew nothing about theory or jazz – mostly rock and finger style guitarists; but my focus was on GASB. So I had to teach them these songs (after I learned them). My function as guitarist (I was the only singer in the group, unfortunately) was bass and rhythm, which was fine, since I was used to playing bluegrass and flat picking across all 6 strings. The other two played leads and, it turned out, inner voices.

    When we first started, I knew almost nothing about jazz voicings and chord spellings – I could play all those dim, aug, 9, m7b5 chords but didn't know what they were called, since I built them up from the bass by ear. So I would have the other two, when they weren't playing solos, only play partial chords that complemented each other. So I'd have one play an Am triad on the top 3 strings at the 5th fret, the other played a D-F#-C on the top 3 strings at the eighth fret, and I would play a classic folk-music C7 shape up two frets, with the top open, for a D9 chord with bass notes of F#, A, or D.

    I basically started thinking of these chords as simpler chords made more complicated by the bass note. An F#m7b5 was an Am with an F# in the bass, for example; a Bbm7b9 was a Dm with a Bb in the bass. But I also started realizing that an F#m7b5 was a D9 without the root note; and hey, it was also an Am6. So I was thinking about simple substitutions without knowing I was doing that, realizing that those chords I had built up using 5 or 6 strings could have different purposes using only 4 strings.

    The 7#11 was a big revelation to me – to realize that a chord I was playing in Ipanema, created by playing that old-favorite folk-music C7 with an Gb grabbed by thumb in the bass, actually had a name – Gb7#11. For me, in Ipanema, I was combining two methods of resolving to the tonic (F, in this case): the V chord, C7, and the bii, Gb. There was no real problem, since that particular inversion of the C7 on the guitar had no G (but – horrors! – two Cs).

    Another AHA! moment was realizing that if I moved that C7 shape up to its tritone, Gb, and grabbed the C with my thumb on the low E string, I had a C7#11, which sounded suspiciously like the Gb7#11. But I realized the limitation: if playing a C7 over the Gb, best to use a formulation of the C7 chord that leaves out the G; likewise, in the C7#11, leave out the Db in the Gb7 chord formulation.

    So, all along, I was thinking about the functions of these chords I was figuring out: Where is this chord going? or How do I want to approach that chord? without being at all aware of the theory behind it. I had learned basic classical theory, and actually love it, but hadn't been aware of jazz approaches to theory. I was working in a practical way, just figuring out easy musical solutions to what I heard.
    To me this is the ideal way to use or construct theory; through the demands of practical music making, with the emphasis on what do in a given situation rather than on theory per se.

    If I was trying to sound clever in a paper I might say ‘Phronesis’ - which is also a very good contemporary jazz trio incidentally.