The Definitive Guide to Scale Positions for Jazz Guitar

Definitive Guide to Scale Positions for Jazz Guitar

How Jazz Guitarists Memorize the Fretboard with Basic Positions and Patterns Scale positions are the “meat and potatoes” of jazz guitar scales playing. Any melodic idea can be analyzed and explained on the fingerboard as belonging to one or more positions. In this article you will learn to properly place your hand on the fingerboard, understand the fingering principles and finally, learn jazz guitar scales in … [Click Here to Read more]

The Basic Jazz Chord Cycles for Guitarists

Basic Chord Cycles for Jazz Guitarists

Diatonic and Chromatic Cycling to Practice Improvisation and Comping When learning basic jazz chord cycles in a new key (tonality), It’s important to learn as much about it as possible, such as intervals, triads, seventh chords, triads over bass chords and other relationships. A proven way of learning a new key, especially the seventh chords and triads within a key, is going through each cycle.  … [Click Here to Read more]

The Beginner’s Guide to Jazz Chord Progressions

Beginner's Guide to Jazz Chord Progressions

An Overview of Jazz Chords and How They’re Combined Jazz chord progressions are the backbone of western civilization music. The harmony created by chords provides added expression to the melody. Jazz harmony consists of a set of typical progressions directly derived from the European classical music tradition. The goal of the jazz accompanist is to compliment the soloist’s ideas while outlining the given jazz chord progression clearly. … [Click Here to Read more]

How To Make A Guitar Amp Sound Better

Guide for making guitar amp sound better

Musicians are nerdy people – ever searching for a better, more profound sound, tinkering with their gear, and what not. Now, it’s only normal that the idea of making your guitar amp sound better crossed your mind, as it did to so many people before you, and we’re here to share some insight and help you succeed. Your amp – the things that can, and … [Click Here to Read more]

Walking Dominant 7th Chords With Diatonic and Chromatic Passing Chords

Walking chords for Jazz Guitar

Move Between Chords by “Walking” Walking chords are to jazz guitar comping what walking bass is to a bass line. The focus of the lesson will be to play chords in a “walking” fashion on the fretboard. I’m not talking about walking bass lines with added chords here. I really want to approach something jazz pianists commonly do (hear how Monk does it). Its (basically) … [Click Here to Read more]

5 Tips To Start Playing Jazz With Your Acoustic Guitar

5 Tips To Start Playing Jazz With Your Acoustic Guitar

The sound of jazz guitar is usually associated with the electric guitar. However, we often forget that there is a completely developed contemporary acoustic segment of this genre! Jazz on a acoustic guitar may sound a bit different, but is as very rich in style and substance. If you have an acoustic guitar – or plan on getting one – there are some things you might … [Click Here to Read more]

How To Keep Motivated When Mastering The Guitar

How To Keep Motivated When Mastering The Guitar

Learning to play the guitar well is one of life greatest pleasures. Succeeding takes time and patience, and staying motivated when you’d rather be doing anything else isn’t easy. There are several things you can do to remain driven until you master it. 1. Structure your practice sessions. Mastering the guitar requires long hours of practice, and this is usually the main reason you lose … [Click Here to Read more]

Meditative Rhythms: The Ultimate Jazz Guitar Warm Up Exercise

meditative rhythms jazz guitar warm up

In this blog post and video we’ll look into an exercise that is very simple. It’s called meditative rhythms. In my humble opinion, this is the most effective jazz guitar warm up there is! Ready? Jazz Guitar Warm Up: Meditation? Meditative Rhythms is a term borrowed from David Berkman, a jazz pianist and educator in New York. I’ve modified his exercise to suit my taste and … [Click Here to Read more]

5 Reasons to Transcribe Jazz Guitar Solos by Ear

Five Reasons To Transcribe Jazz Guitar Solos By Ear

A lot of players transcribe jazz guitar solos during their practice time. If you are not doing it, maybe it is because you do not see the benefits (yet). We are convinced that you know a handful of jazz solos you really enjoy listening to and in this blog post, we will give you 5 reasons explaining why you should transcribe these great jazz solos by ear.  A word of advice: You … [Click Here to Read more]

Five Chord Melody Tips and Stuff for Jazz Guitarists of ALL levels

Five Chord Melody Tips for Jazz Guitarists

Here’s a straightforward and easy to apply lesson to perk up your chord melody playing. Here are five tips for jazz guitarists of all levels regarding the fine art (and science) of playing harmony and melody simultaneously on the guitar. The Pain Points: In Summary Problem #1: Your chord melody sound like just a “bunch of chords” one after another. Solution: Make the melody a priority. Phrase the … [Click Here to Read more]

How to Sound Jazzy with Altered Dominants

How to sound jazzy using altered dominants

You know the drill: as jazz players, we’re always looking for ways to add nice chromatic notes and altered dominants into our solos. So this lesson is yet another way to solve one of the most typical issues for beginning and intermediate jazz players, which is … How can I sound less inside when I solo? In this blog + video lesson, we’ll do just that … [Click Here to Read more]

How to Play Shell Voicings for Jazz Guitar (3-Note Chords)

Jazz Guitar Lessons: Shell Voicings

Shell voicings for jazz guitar are one of the greatest ways to either go back to basics (to better understand harmony on the guitar) or, plainly, to get started comping. So, forget about memorizing tons of chord shapes. You simply need a few basic chord shells (commonly called shell voicings, or shell chords). Ready? Shell Voicings (3-Note Chords): But Why? As an analogy, shell voicings … [Click Here to Read more]

Jazz Guitar Duos: Top-5 Guitar-Bass Albums

Top 5 Jazz Guitar Duos and Bass Albums

Jazz guitar duos with a bass. No drums. No piano. No brass. No anything else. This is probably the simplest combination you can get in Jazz Guitar. This minimalistic setting helped creating some of the most sensitive and intimate jazz records ever. Ed Bickert & Don Thompson: At the Garden Party (1979) This Ed Bickert and Don Thompson album has of one of the warmest guitar sound … [Click Here to Read more]

Jazz Guitar Albums: 5 Essential Must-Have Recordings You Should Listen To Now

Ed Bickert and Don Thompson - At the Garden Party

The Ultimate Selection of “the best of the best” Essential Jazz Guitar Albums, Old and New Sure, there’s thousands of great albums that have been recorded to this day. But some legendary jazz guitarists have that universal sound that reaches and touches people deeply. If you’ve ever been “grabbed” by the sound of one album, then you know exactly what I mean. So, here’s my own … [Click Here to Read more]

Jazz Guitar Chords for Beginners: The Drop 2 Chords Challenge

Jazz Guitar Drop 2 chords

Here’s a short blog + video lesson on easy drop 2 chords for jazz guitar beginners. Or, as I call it, “The Drop 2 Challenge”. Generally, when jazz guitarists comp (that is, when playing comping a.k.a chords acCOMPaniment), they don’t always use barre chords. Or chords with the root in the bass for that matter. To gain more liberty, the intermediate players will gain lots of … [Click Here to Read more]

Pat Metheny Top-5 Albums

Pat Metheny Top 5 Albums

Pat Metheny: Where to begin when talking about the recorded output of one of the most prolific jazz composer, improviser and recording artist of the last 40 years?!? By my favorite albums of course! In case you didn’t know, Metheny won 20 Grammys and three of his albums went gold. It’s hard to discuss such a jazz giant without forgetting to mention something important. Metheny … [Click Here to Read more]

Powerful Back to Basics: 3 Awesome Jazz Blues Fundamentals

Back to Basics - Jazz Guitar Blues

This is more of a “ready fire aim” type of blog post on jazz blues improvisation for jazz guitarists. Highly recommended: download the following backing track, read some of the suggestions and get cracking. If I were you, I’d even read the post with the guitar on my lap. 😉 At first, take the time to understand what the three exercises are all about.  Each … [Click Here to Read more]

The Dummies’ Guide to Jazz Standards – for Jazz Guitarists

Dummies' Guide to Jazz Standards

The year is 2005. I’m warming up on a few jazz standards on my (then new) blue Godin Flat-Five X. The almost sound-proof cubicle is cozy, but wide enough to fit a piano and one all-purpose amp. The air is old and stinky from being recycled by the ventilation system. And I’m thinking to myself, Oh, quite the honor. I have my own private ON/OFF switch for … [Click Here to Read more]

Getting a Thrill From Harmony and Arrangers – Ed Bickert Interviews Part 2

Ed Bickert - great jazz guitarist

Here are some more insights into Ed Bickert‘s legendary playing. Some musical thoughts that are extremely relevant in understanding his genius and approach to jazz guitar chords. Ed talks about what he finds exciting in nice, surprising harmonies (on the guitar or otherwise) when they’re done with “the right approach, the right sound”. And in the second video, the master mentions arrangers (such as Gil … [Click Here to Read more]

How Chord Melody Can Make You Question Everything and Stuff

Chord Melody: Jazz Guitarists' Ultimate Expression

I often get asked “Is there a chord melody path I should embark on?” And this is a tricky question. I mean, sure, you can get a book of pre-fabricated chord melody arrangements on standards. But it won’t answer most of your questions regarding harmony, melody and guitar playing. Knowing and really playing in chord melody style requires far more than imitation. We have to imitate … [Click Here to Read more]

Jazz Guitar Tips: Learn the Fretboard

learn the fretboard modern method for Guitar A rhythm changes guide and Putting it all together quartal harmony position playing

In this first (of many) jazz guitar tips, let’s address something crucial for jazz guitarists: knowing the names of the notes on the entire instrument. In short, today’s jazz guitar tip is learn the fretboard! You’ll be glad you did. Let first see why (hey, I need to justify what we’re doing here!) and shortly after how (a technique) you can apply. Simple steps to learn the fretboard thoroughly, without too … [Click Here to Read more]

7 Steps (You’re Probably NOT Taking) to Learn Jazz Standards for Jazz Guitarists

Learn Jazz Standards

Let’s be honest: you probably don’t know enough Jazz Guitar Standards tunes to jam with a  fellow jazz musician for an hour. And the problem might simply be that you are not taking the necessary steps to really learn the tunes in question. Good news: you’re not alone! 🙂 In the midst of teaching, coaching and creating new lessons for JazzGuitarLessons.net I recently realized that most students may know … [Click Here to Read more]

96 Jazz Guitar Chords in 10 minutes: how to learn Drop 2 and Drop 3 voicings for Jazz Guitarists

Jazz Guitar Chord Lessons

  Here’s a clever way to learn 96 jazz guitar chords in a few minutes: Learn Drop 2 and Drop 3 voicings (2 things to learn) … for 4 chord qualities (maj7, min7, dom7, m7b5) … at each fret (12 frets on the guitar) TWO times FOUR times TWELVE = 96 So, this whole post will be about “Drop” voicings and more specifically how to … [Click Here to Read more]

Jazz Guitar Pentatonics – Part 1 – What is the pentatonic scale?

Jazz Guitar Pentatonics Part 1

In this article / video series, we will study pentatonic scales and how they can be applied in Jazz guitar improvisations. The jazz guitar pentatonics are used extensively throughout recorded Jazz history. We will go very slow, starting from the construction of two very common and simple to use pentatonic scales. We will then work on them throughout the fretboard (positions), using several patterns. Finally, we’ll see … [Click Here to Read more]

How to Play Jazz Guitar: The Truth About Finding Your Muse

how to play jazz guitar learn it from here

When we are learning how to play jazz guitar, the question is always: “Am I practicing the right stuff?” Or better still: “What is the next step a jazz guitarist at my level should take?” As far as I know, there’s never a perfect answer. Thank God. We are lucky that there’s no pre-established curriculum for a jazz musicians to learn. Else we would all sound … [Click Here to Read more]