Tag Archives: guitar

Minor Mysteries

Hey Jazz Guy, I feel totally lost with minor chords, there are so many different types. What on earth do I play? –Lost in Long Island Dear Lost, You are not alone. Minor harmony is a difficult topic precisely because there are so many variations. We will look at four types of commonly used minor […]

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Contrasting Elements

Hey Jazz Guy, I feel like all my solos sound the same. Any advice on how I can diversify? –Uniform in Unity Village Dear Uniform, What a great question. This is more than just a jazz topic. No matter what style of music you are playing, this concept will give you a great palate from […]

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Rhythmic Variation

Hey Jazz Guy, Im always playing constant eighth-notes, or the same rhythms. How can I get more rhythmic variety in my playing? –Constant in Colorado Springs Dear Constant, This is definitely an issue with improvising, especially for guitarists because unlike horn players, we don’t have to breathe. One method for enhancing your rhythmic vocabulary is […]

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Putting It All Together – Part Two

Hey Jazz Guy, Now that I’ve got the inside playing down, how bout that ‘out’ stuff? –Inside in Indianapolis Dear Inside, How bout that ‘out’ stuff? Well, it is worth looking outside the box to examining some simple techniques that can sound fantastically outside. As with the inside examples, we use for practice the first […]

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Putting It All Together – Part One

Hey Jazz Guy, I’ve got all my scales down pretty good, but still having trouble making all the changes. Can you give me some advice on how to put it all together?? –Fragmented In Fargo Dear Fragmented, A difficult part of improvising, is putting it all together, turning scales into great sounding lines. However, there […]

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Melodic Minor

Hey Jazz Guy, I got the major scale down well, but I keep hearing about melodic minor, can you give me some tips on how it works?? –Major in Minneapolis Dear Major, The mysterious melodic minor’s many magical modes have always presented a myriad of possibilities. The sound is unmistakable and some of the modes […]

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Reharmonizing Melodies

Hey Jazz Guy, What are some more ideas for re-harmonizing a melody? –Standard in Syracuse Dear Standard, Using re-harmonization to spice up a melody can be very exciting. One method that is useful and interesting is to change the bass note. In the examples here we’ve used F as the melody note, and re-harmonized it […]

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Rhythm Changes – Part 2 – Bridge

Hey Jazz Guy, Now that I got the A section of “Rhythm Changes” together, what can I play on the dominant chords in the bridge? –Subordinate in Salem Dear Subordinate, The bridge or B section changes in “I Got Rhythm” is one of the most commonly found harmonic progressions in jazz. Using all dominant chords, […]

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Comping

Hey Jazz Guy, I’ve got my chords down pretty well, but how can be more rhythmic in my accompanying? –Square in Sacramento Dear Square, The most important thing about accompaniment or “comping”, is to make whatever it is you are accompanying sound better. A large rhythmic vocabulary is crucial to making you sound great behind […]

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Jazz Tap

Hey Jazz Guy, Is there a way to introduce tapping in a jazz solo/improv? –Picking in Puerto Rico Dear Picking, What a great question! This is a really cool idea, so adventurous however, that few guitarist have managed to try it, let alone master it. The most obvious candidate for this type of playing is […]

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