The Ultimate Guide to Dominant Chords for Jazz Guitar

The Ultimate Guide to Dominant Chords for Jazz Guitar

A lot of new guitarists have been asking what dominant chords are, and in its simplest manner, I will walk you through the very basic fundamentals of this. In music theory, a dominant seventh chord, or major minor seventh chord, is a chord composed of a root, major third, perfect fifth, and minor seventh. It can also be viewed as a major triad with an additional minor seventh. The shortcut? Dominant … [Click Here to Read more]

Walking Dominant 7th Chords With Diatonic and Chromatic Passing Chords

Walking Dominant 7th Chords With Diatonic and Chromatic Passing Chords

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]

How To Build A Chord Melody in 3 Easy Steps

How To Build A Chord Melody in 3 Easy Steps

During their jazz journey, many guitarists will build a chord melody of their favorite jazz standard, making the song sound like their own. For those of you who are just discovering this concept, let’s define what a chord melody is. A chord melody is an arrangement of a song that includes both the melody and the harmony (chords) of the simultaneously, at the same time. … [Click Here to Read more]

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

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

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]

The Jazz Guitar Comping Video Lesson of Your Dreams

The Jazz Guitar Comping Video Lesson of Your Dreams

Oh yeah! This is exciting. Time for  the jazz guitar comping video lesson of your dreams.  No kidding! The Gist of It Problem: jazz guitar apprentice is seeking to get better at jazz guitar comping Solution: first reflex is to try and learn more jazz guitar chord shapes. Which does not work, by the way … it leads to more confusion. Alternative: Learn to approach comping from a … [Click Here to Read more]

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

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

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 Chords for Beginners: The Drop 2 Chords Challenge

Jazz Guitar Chords for Beginners: The Drop 2 Chords Challenge

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]

Jazz Guitar Blues: How to Sound Jazzy with the VI Chord

Jazz Guitar Blues: How to Sound Jazzy with the VI Chord

In this blog, we’ll work on the three (most interesting) jazz guitar blues possibilities to make your blues playing sound … well … jazzier! The VI chord, found in bar 8, can really help define the harmonic progression of the jazzier types of blues in your soloing. Let’s get going! Get “Jazz Guitar Blues Six Chord Lesson” PDF Where’s that VI chord? We all know … [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]

Japan, Donuts and Plucking Like a Jazz Guitar Great – Ed Bickert Interviews Part 1

Ed Bickert - great jazz guitarist

Canadian jazz guitarist Ed Bickert is a living legend. A series of fourteen short clips (from closed-doors interviews with Jeff Bickert) were published on Vimeo in 2014. Yours truly, the author of the post and the webmaster on JazzGuitarLessons.net, recently stumbled upon them and decided to make them available (embedded) on this blog. I hope you’ll enjoy these Ed Bickert footages as much as I did. … [Click Here to Read more]

Jazz Guitar Tips: Voice Leading

Jazz Guitar Tips: Voice Leading

Sad news: this is the last of the series of seven blog posts (and videos) on quick-and-easy jazz guitar tips. (Remember last time? We talked about chord cycles …) Good news: this is “the dessert”, the sweet treat … my all-time favorite tip for jazz guitarists of all levels: Learn to use voice leading in your comping! We could also have had this jazz guitar tip … [Click Here to Read more]

Jazz Guitar Tips: Chord Cycles

Jazz Guitar Tips: Chord Cycles

And we’re back to jazz guitar harmony with today’s tip, which is: Play your chords through jazz chord cycles! This is a very straightforward little jazz guitar trick to add to your arsenal. Personally, I basically see the chord cycles as a simple tool to play in all keys. For instance, once you learn a chord, a lick or a song, it can be beneficial … [Click Here to Read more]

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

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

  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 Blues: Comping for Jazz

Jazz Guitar Blues: Comping for Jazz

How to Create Meaningful Accompaniments in Jazz Guitar Blues Comping Contexts Here’s your starting point for everything jazz guitar blues comping. This video and PDF lesson covers everything you need to get started and jazz up your blues comping. Here’s the accompanying PDF: Use this PDF to learn the 3 basic steps for generating great jazz guitar blues accompaniments. In this video, a simple yet effective method is … [Click Here to Read more]