A Foray In To Jazz Guitar

Well, my guitar arrived a few days ago and I have had the chance to try it out. I have had it running through my birthday present and it sounds very clean, crisp and authentic to what I hope to achieve.

Well, what do I hope to achieve? I hope to get a similar sound to Bucky Pizzarelli – back when Bucky jammed with Zoot Sims on a release in 1976. It is a very warm clear tone – a thing of beauty & a joy forever.

The style which I play my guitar is Jazz Chordal – essentially akin to the rhythm guitarists of rock music. I am the first to admit I am fairly crap at it – but it is a lot of fun and proves to be a welcome distraction.

To say it is a ‘welcome distraction’ may be taking away the healing properties of learning a new skill – and, yes, it is therapeutic to me. I am gaining maximum expression with minimal input (essentially I am just making a noise at the moment) but I am constantly learning new things – this is doing me wonders. I have set myself realizable goals and I am achieving them.

The first thing to figure out on my new, left-handed guitar is the strumming. I am pretty clumsy with a pick so Googled the best way to ‘pick’ a Jazz guitar. Apparently, it is to have the thumb on the sixth string, pointy finger on the fourth string, sweary finger on the third string, ring finger on the second string – then you gently close your hand up in a groping fashion, sounding all of the strings.

I am learning Barre chords for my right hand (left-handed guitar) as my right hand is not the most mobile (yet). I have worked my way through the Major, & Minor barre chords and I am working on the Major Seventh Chords. It is proving a challenge – but I am rising to it.

Once I have the hang of how to finger the barre chords, I will working my way to Chord progressions – Figure this is the logical conclusion as I need to play something other than isolated chords.

I have found that Google is my friend on this – there is a massive amount of free literature and videos online that help with Jazz Chordal playing. One of the good sites I have found is Guitar Lesson World. The below Jazz Chord Progression is lifted from that site – I aim to achieve this.

Jazz Progressions are simply common chord progressions in jazz music. One of the most common progressions is the ii-V-I progression. The ii-V-I sounds at its best when you use seventh chords and their expanded voicings, apperently. The ii chord is a minor chord, the V chord is a dominant chord, and the I chord is a major chord. So the most basic Jazz progression is the ii minor 7 – V dominant 7 – I major 7. In the key of C, this progression is Dm7-G7-Cmaj7.

Below, you will find a few examples lifted from the above site that I aim to experiment with.

jazz-progressions-ii-V-I-progressions
‘Borrowed’ from Guitar Lesson World
 
A Harrogate Blog - Written By A Harrogate Blogger. Andy Is Harrogate's Chief Procrastinator. A 'Funny Little Man.' By day a web designer, Andy has a hand in several music projects - including being in a chart-topping producer duo and he runs his own record label.