Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

32 bar AABA form and Joe Pass solo

32 bar AABA form and Joe Pass solo in Stuffy w/Herb Ellis

I thought it was a good idea to listen to solos and break them down. I'm also trying to find stuff that is playable. So here is a nice one that you can learn a lot form and much of it is quite playable.

Stuffy (video below) is a 32 bar AABA tune almost exactly the same as "Rhythm Changes". The A sections in this tune are essentially rhythm changes, but the bridge is different. It is also a very common progression for a Bridge (B section) and broken down to the basics, looks like this below. It's in the key of Eb. Adding  II  V equivalents make is more jazzy.
Key of Eb
B section  (Bridge)
||  Eb7      |             |  Abmaj7     |              |

| F7         |              | Bb7           |               ||  

Whatever the bridge progression, listen to this for the AABA format over and over again. Get used to hearing it repeated.
Listen to Joe Pass Solo around 2:00.
I'm transcribing part of Joe Pass' solo. I have the bridge and A done but still need 2 AAs. I think we can learn a lot from the Bridge I've already transcribed. 
You can hear this bridge at 2:20
I have a transcription, and we can break it down.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Thurs Nov 16, Autumn Leaves, All of Me


I love it! Thanks Marlene and Freddy.
You can play along with this one guys, it's in your key.
You can go nuts on Youtube yourselves and find your other versions to listen to.


Barney Kessel - Key of Cm/Eb 

Miles Davis
Here's Miles version of Autumn Leaves. It's in the other common key that this tune is found in, Bb/Gm, and you should learn it in that key as well. It's not a hard transpose. It's just so great to groove along with this..the best! Listen to the chord progression.

....and even Eric Clapton
 Here's Eric Clapton's contribution to the world of Autumn Leaves. It's in the Key of Bm/D. Listen to the chords going by.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Notes from Thurs Nov 8

Here are a few more charts. I've added All of Me and Autumn Leaves because we can learn the most from these 2 tunes. I've included Spooky as well because it has become a jazz standard, it's funky and it's so "II-V" ! This is also an example of how jazz chord progressions made it into "pop" music. So if you want to get a head start on those here are the charts. We'll look at them next week.
Here they are:
1. All of Me
2. Autumn Leaves
3. Josie
4. How High the Moon
5. Girl From Ipanema
6. Spooky - video below, play along. This is the original version, in Fm.

I made a Repertoire page with a basic standards list.
Videos below.

Please just peruse the pile of charts I gave you. You don't have to know how to play them all, but just look at the different chord progressions.

What to look for when looking at the tunes:

1) Note the key of the song.

2) Look at the chord progression as a whole. Is it a blues? Is it a 32 bar AABA? What's the "form". Is it "1st ending 2nd ending"? Is it rhythm changes? It is a minor key tune? etc.... How can you describe that tune?

3) Look at small parts of the chord progression and try to identify the II-V's here and there in the songs. Are there any cycle of 5th patterns (even for a few bars)?

4) Look at all those V chords moving around.

- When you're playing any of these tunes (or parts thereof) see if you can locate where the melody is on the guitar, in relation to the chord. And don't forget to locate the first note of the melody so you can hum the melody while you're playing the chords.
-  Play the chord progressions using whatever chord forms you like, or can play! The important thing is to play the tune, but make sure you practice the chords you can't play yet as well, then work them in.
- Note any fingering patterns that become obvious when you're playing through the chord progression.

Re: some even harder stuff. There's no reason why we can't learn parts of tunes.
Thanks Isreal for reminding me of Agua de Beber. If we have time, we can work on it. It's a cool tune and I have a good chart.
And Michael...I've added Girl from Ipanema, what the heck.
We might even try Round Midnight...later.
John - as I mentioned, Lost Weekend is "Rhythm Changes" in the key of D so you can practice that. The bridge is not Rhythm Changes though, it goes to F#m - C#7 - F#m.....then down from F#m to Em back to D (the old 1 2 3 trick, or in this case 3 2 1 (F#m-Em-D) )
And yes, So What does start on a D note! Thanks Michael M for pointing that out. I've readjusted my fingers to accommodate it.

Speaking of "rhythm changes", you can read all about Rhythm Changes at Wikipedia and see some variations and chord substitutions. There are tons of ways you can play this chord progression. But regardless of what alterations you make, always remember the basic chord progression. That's really important. The chart I gave you is as basic as it gets *. (note, that goes for any tune you learn..if you're learning other people's interpretation of things, make sure you're aware of the base chord progression. You can get this by 1) looking in fakebooks, or 2) YouTubing the tune and compare the chord progressions of different versions.)
I highly recommend you buy a standard fake book or get one online. You can buy a bundle of about a dozen of them, as pdfs. That's what I have, it's great.
Most of the charts I've given you are from the original "vintage" Realbook 1 fakebook so you can see what those look like.

* The original is actually even more basic but these are the standard changes played in the jazz world.

Next week, more fun, and tips for improvising. Plus it's about time we started adding some colourful notes to the basic chords we've been playing so heads up for that.

Videos below

Here's a nice version of I Got Rhythm, the original tune. Listen to the form AABA and listen to the changes. You can play along also. The chords aren't identical but they never are. 

Here's a really fast version Sarah Vaughn that modulates to different keys. Don't try to play along just listen to the "changes" and when it goes from one key to another. Just listen.

 RHYTHM CHANGES EXAMPLE 3 - a modern approach
Herbie Hancock, Branford Marsalis. At 2:00 you can hear the chord progression starting and 2:12 you can firmly hear it. Listen to the bass player play the "changes" starting around 2:12!

The ridiculously fast Anthropology by Charker Parker. Typical bebop rhythm changes. Again, just listen to the changes and even more importantly try to hear the AABA AABA AABA..... blur going by.

So What
One of the best moments in jazz, for me, is the cymbal crash at the top of the blowing (soloing) of So What, at the end of the "head". It's the sweetest cymbal crash in all of jazz. That's at 1:32.
You can play along, use the Dorian scale. The melody is easy too and starts on D and is fairly easy to finger on the guitar.

Spooky Classics IV - Fm
Play the Bb13 chord using the G6 chord position I showed you, except play the b7 note on the D string with your barred first finger. It's easy. Otherwise just play Bb7 (using the movable E chord) and play the Fm7 using the movable Am position.

Josie (Steely Dan) done by Larry Carlton (love the hair)
(Forget about the intro just start at the "groove" part Em)

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Here are some standard tunes that make for a good basic list. These are among the 200 (or so) tunes that a jazz guitar player should have a handle on. (But starting with 10 is just fine! :) . You will discover which ones you like to play, and you can design your own repertoire according to your own taste.

Some of the standards you should investigate

Freddie the Freeloader *
Blues w/Everything
All Blues
Blue Monk
Straight No Chaser
Now's the Time
Billie's Bounce
Blues for Alice

Autumn Leaves
All of Me
Honeysuckle Rose
My Romance
Sunny Side of the Street
Ain't Misbehavin'
Satin Doll
Night and Day
Fly me to the Moon
As Time Goes By
Softly as a morning sunrise

Scrapple from the Apple
Green Dolphin Street
How High the Moon
Stella by Starlight
All the Things You Are
Round Midnight
Rhythm changes [wikipedia]
    1. I Got Rhythm
    2. Anthropology
    3. Oleo
    4. The Bridge (B section) appearing in many tunes,

So What

Latin Jazz
Black Orpheus
Girl from Ipanema
any Jobim tune
Blue Bossa

Minor Swing

Watermelon Man
Work Song
some George Benson - Affirmation
some Wes Montgomery

Friday, October 19, 2012

Week 5 - Oct 18 Summertime, Aeolian/Dorian, Cycle of 5ths

Aeolian and Dorian minor scales/modes - the difference and how to play.

Summertime, play along

Cycle of 5ths
(look at the chart for Scrapple from the Apple that I gave you and you can see a common way that the cycle of 5ths is used)

Summertime, played by me.