For those rockers and intermediates trying to improve...

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by Tag, Nov 30, 2019.

  1. derekd

    derekd Member

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    Naw, it sounds more complicated than it is.

    First thing is understanding major scale theory. That is pretty simple. C major scale consists of C(I), D(ii), E(iii), F(IV), G(V), A(vi), B(vii) with the numbers denoting the degrees of the scale. So D is the 2nd of C, E is the 3rd of C, etc. Think Do rei mi, etc. That's the major scale and its various notes or degrees.

    When we stack the notes of the major scale in thirds we get the following chords Cmaj, Dmin, Emin, Fmaj, Gmaj, Amin, Bmin. Those are just the basic triads, root, 3rd & 5th. You are familiar with these chords.

    In jazz, we add another note to get 7th chords (root, 3rd, 5th & 7th), so Cmaj7, Dmin7, Emin7, Fmaj7, G7, Amin7, Bmin7b5 are the chords in the C major family. As long as we stick with those chords we stay in the key of C. Most pop/rock/country/blues tunes stick to just one key.

    For jazz, the most important notes in a chord are the 3rd and 7th. The bass player takes care of roots so guitarists typically don't have to worry about them. We focus on 3rds and 7ths the most when playing chords or lines, often.
     
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  2. JonR

    JonR Member

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    I think the issue was pedantic/semantic (whatever). You said "turns into", whose meaning was ambiguous. You meant it flattened to become the b7 of IV. Bluesful understood it to mean that the note stayed the same but the chord change gave it a different identity.

    Obviously we three all know what happens in a blues. But just as well to be clear.;)

    OK, now play on...
     
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  3. beatcomber

    beatcomber Member

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    Thanks! I'll work with this and see if I can understand it!
     
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  4. beatcomber

    beatcomber Member

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    Thank you! I'll spend some time working through trying to understand this!
     
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  5. JonR

    JonR Member

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    Here's what Tag meant (key of E):
    Code:
    E7     A7
    -0-----0---
    -3-->>-2---
    -1-->>-0---
    -2-----2---
    -2-----0---
    -0-----0---
    The 2nd string shows the 7th of E7 (D), turning into the 3rd of A7 (C#), while the 3rd string shows the 3rd of E7 (G#) turning into the 7th of A7 (G). This is known as "voice-leading", and it's the mechanism by which pretty much all chord changes (in or out of key) work.
    In jazz, 3rds and 7ths are known as "guide tones", because of the fundamental role they play in expressing the chord changes. Sometimes in jazz, chord accompanists play nothing but 3rds and 7ths.

    Compare how it works when changing from A7 to D7, or D7 to G7. Think of each string as a "voice" (in a 6-piece choir), and each "singer" wants to keep the same note if they can, or just go up or down by half or whole step.
    The usual guitar chord shapes tend to organise your voice-leading for you, provided you keep the chords in the same position on the fretboard, so you don't really have to think about it. But it can be an eye-opener when you see how it works.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019
  6. Tag

    Tag Gold Supporting Member

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    That sounds like a TwoRock Emerald Pro.
     
  7. Tag

    Tag Gold Supporting Member

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    Sure you will. If my simple mind got it, anyone can. Count up the major scale in G until you hit the 3rd. In G that's a B note. Now when the G chord in a 12 bar blues goes to the IV chord (C7) the main note to change is that B note down 1/2 step to Bb. That Bb is the 7th degree of the C chord you are playing.
    Simplest way to look at that is a whole step down from the root C note. If you cant understand that, and want to improve, a few basic guitar lessons will straighten it right out.
    :beer

    If I showed you in person, it would take 3 or 4 minutes and you would fully understand it, and most importantly hear it.
     
  8. Tag

    Tag Gold Supporting Member

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    Not at all. Listen to Robben Ford on a basic blues. The parts rockers struggle with are the most basic bop lines he uses.
     
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  9. Tag

    Tag Gold Supporting Member

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    The reason I am flatting that note is because the 4 chord in a maj blues is a Dom 7 chord, which in C, would be F7, not F maj7. So your example should show how that 3rd needs to be flatted (E to Eb) to make the change! That's the entire point! If you are playing a major blues and the IV chord is a maj7, that's an odd progression and would be treated in an entirely different manner.
     
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  10. Tag

    Tag Gold Supporting Member

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    Ah! Makes sense! Thanks John and sorry for not being clear enough @Bluesful !
     
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  11. Tag

    Tag Gold Supporting Member

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    Just remember that the IV chord in a maj blues is a Dom chord, not a maj 7, that's why the B note (In a G maj blues) needs to be flatted on the C7 chord!!
     
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  12. Tag

    Tag Gold Supporting Member

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    That's it!!
    Thanks Jon!!
     
  13. Bussman

    Bussman Member

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    Yeah. As usual JonR articulated the actual concept better than both of us ever could. We're so lucky to have him.
     
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  14. boo radley

    boo radley Member

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    Well...less interested in the 'how' than the 'why.'

    If someone plays 'rock' music (a ridiculously huge umbrella) and wants to improve -- say he or she wants to solo like Slash, or use the guitar to provide a foundation like the Black Keys, or Sturgill Simpson -- what is the fastest path? I would *think* working with advanced rock musicians, or those who teach rock music.

    But I have no expertise nor experience with this -- the suggestion of transcribing bebop horn lines seems oddly personal, and unrelated (beyond yeah, it's helpful, but so is reading music, improving right-hand by playing bluegrass, working through classical etudes, etc., etc.).

    As in The Karate Kid, are bebop lines from the 40's and 50's like Mr. Miyagi's "wax-on, wax-off?"
     
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  15. Tag

    Tag Gold Supporting Member

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    Yep. They are important in ANY style. Why? Because they wind through the chords themselves, and voice lead not only to the chords tones at hand, but from one chord to another. They help train your ear as well as give you all kinds of jumping off points.
    Listen to Slashes solo in November Rain. I have never learned it, but I bet hes covering some of the changes, which bop lines teach you to hear. Want to learn chords and voicings for rhythm playing? Listen to the piano players or guitarist comping. Of course this is in ADDITION to learning and studying the core material you love, but learn the bop lines, and you will be amazed how simple many things you struggled with before become.
     
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  16. Ed DeGenaro

    Ed DeGenaro Supporting Member

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    Alternatively for the non Jazz guys try using the G major/E minor Blues scale for the I7 (G7) and G minor Blues scale for the IV7 (C7).
    Over the I that'll get you the 1, 9, #9, 3, 5, 6 and over the IV the 5, b7, 1, b9, 9, 11.
    And you can use the G min Blues as well over the V that gives you 11, 5, #5, 6, 1, 9.
     
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  17. Bluesful

    Bluesful Supporting Member

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    All good.

    Jon explained the difference/what I was saying perfectly.
     
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  18. Thumpalumpacus

    Thumpalumpacus Member

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    Both voice-leading and internal motion rely upon this. It's what makes it fun! Looking at changes as a set of parallel melodies is also useful.
     
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  19. Thumpalumpacus

    Thumpalumpacus Member

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    I took lessons in the late 80s because while I was working on my (pretty dull) shred chops, I wanted to introduce something outside and find my own voice. It helped my rock playing to learn jazz; I got comfortable with different harmonic sensibilities, and different rhythms.

    Alex Skolnick too makes much use of outside playing in a rock context.

    You're right, if you wanted to be a great rock guitarist, you took lessons with a Name or went to GIT. The latter would, funny enough, have the nascent shredders learning jazz tunes in the curriculum.
     
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  20. candid_x

    candid_x Supporting Member

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    So many notes. So little music.
     
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