Is there anything you are studying at the moment?

Discussion in 'Musically Speaking' started by BarryMClark, Jan 3, 2015.

  1. BarryMClark

    BarryMClark Member

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    I am actually working on jazz-blues at the moment. Using extended/altered chords in the basic 12 bar blues and applying minor/major pentatonics to them.

    Anything specific you are working on?
     
  2. JeffB

    JeffB Member

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    defense games.
    Still the same crap I was 6months ago. Chords.
     
  3. tonebender

    tonebender Member

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    I never quit working on the blues.
     
  4. SouthpawGuy

    SouthpawGuy Active Member

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    I wouldn't say studying but I've been working on adding an extra note to 4 notes arpeggios ( Maj7, Dom7, min7, dim7 etc). What that does is give you 5 notes, or pentatonics other than the usual Major or minor variety.

    Pentatonics are good for guitar players as they provide two note per string forms, or shapes, which lend themselves to " guitarisms", if that's a word.

    Thing is there are three "other" notes from a Major scale which can be added in turn to a 4 note arp, same goes for the three different minor scales, so it can be a bit overwhelming.

    For example A minor 7 arp = A C E G

    The A minor 7 arp is produced from the C Major scale which is C D E F G A B C.

    So three notes remain unused, the D, F and B notes.

    Adding each of them in turn to A C E G ....

    A B C E G

    A C D E G

    A C E F G

    Great fun :)
     
  5. vanschoyck

    vanschoyck Member

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    Working on memorizing a bunch of Charlie Parker blues choruses, mainly. Very humbling.
     
  6. marty grass

    marty grass Member

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    Interesting. Do you find it helpful?
     
  7. SouthpawGuy

    SouthpawGuy Active Member

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    In a word .. yes.

    It's really just another way of looking at scales and arpeggios and importantly substitutions.

    In the example above A B C E G, Am7 with an added 2 = Am9

    but the same notes are also C Maj 7, C E G B, with an added sixth, i.e. an A ( C E G A B )

    -----------------

    the second example A C D E G, Am7 with an added 4th = the A minor pentatonic scale

    ( which is also the C Major pentatonic scale ),

    it could also be called a Dm7 arp with no third but Root, 2nd, 4th, 5th, flat 7th ( a modal arp ? )

    ------------------

    and the third example A C E F G, Am7 with an added 6th = F Maj 7 ( F G A C E ) with an added 2 = F Maj 9

    So with one 4 note arpeggio as a starting point and adding one extra note lots of ground can be covered.

    ------------------

    The ones with the added 2nd and 6th degree sound consonant or safe. Those with the added 4th tend to sound more "out there" or dissonant, especially over major or dominant chords as the 4th degree is only semi tone away from the 3rd, and creates lots of tension.

    The shapes can involve some large stretches but they're worth learning.
     
  8. Trip 5s

    Trip 5s New Member

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    A week or so before the holidays I downloaded Chuck D'Aloia's "Blues with Brains" videos. There is a lot of material. I'm taking a first pass at it by just seeing all there is to see. I'm nearly finished with the viewing stage. Next will be to go over everything again, guitar in hand, and start getting these things under my fingers. I expect it will be a month or so before I'll be able to assess the value of the material and quite a bit longer to really go deep and learn it in the ears, brain, and fingers.

    The gist seems to be how and when to apply scales usually associated with jazz, especially the 4th and 7th modes of the melodic minor scale into the blues. He's using more familiar pentatonic scales as an entry way into this. There is much demonstration also of how triads and diatonic 7ths fit into the grander schemes. There's also sections and explanations of chord substitutions, turnarounds, phrasings, and many other smaller components. He's usually playing as he's talking which is a good way to get your ears used to these (new) sounds. I believe he knows this material very well and am somewhat optimistic that it will be helpful to me.
     
  9. tonebender

    tonebender Member

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    Thanks, I will look into that video.
     
  10. Koula

    Koula Member

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    Griff Hamlin's Blues Guitar Unleashed.
     
  11. BarryMClark

    BarryMClark Member

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    Indeed they do. One of the problems I have had with study (less so lately but HORRIBLE over the first 25 years) was discipline. I would skip the easy stuff like working with Pentatonics of the major/minor variety because they didn't let me breathe or whatever artsy bs you want to call it. Even in their simplicity, I am finding a wealth of education in them that I have missed for a very long time. One of the things I am after is improv playing and what better place to start! I actually have to force myself to stick with the M/m pents and not noodle off somewhere. I have been actually taking it a step further and restricting myself to strings. For instance, I have to come up with a tasteful lead using ONLY the B & E strings for a turn and only strictly using the pent notes (no blue notes). Coming up with something that works is easy with 4 notes. Coming up with something tasteful... yeah... not easy. haha. Next turn I might allow for blue notes or change the strings that I am restricted to. Maybe use the tritone adjustment for altered doms. I am still kicking myself for thinking I was too good for the simple stuff early on.
     
  12. Koula

    Koula Member

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    This really resonates for me. It seems you are being more mindful of what you're playing, paying attention, each note counts.
     
  13. SouthpawGuy

    SouthpawGuy Active Member

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    Here's something to ponder ....

    Take a six note blues scale and remove the fifth, eg for the A blues scale remove the note of E leaving A C D Eb G.

    Why do that ? Because it's a way "in" to much more complex material.

    The remaining notes are an A min7 b5 arpeggio with an added 4th.

    The 4th adds extra tension and also gives us a five note shape, or pentatonic.

    The min7b5 chord itself isn't that common but the trick here is to use it over an F7, or |Cm7 F7 |

    i.e. a min7b5 built on the 3rd of the dominant chord.

    Even someone with a few months of playing guitar can learn the blues scale, applying it in this way opens up a whole new bag of tricks.

    tab
    .......................................................................................................... 8 10 11
    ..........................................................................( next octave) 8 10
    .......................................................... 5 7 8
    ........................... (next octave) 5 7
    .............. 3 5 6
    ..... 3 5
     
  14. SouthpawGuy

    SouthpawGuy Active Member

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    Some chords to solo over with the tab above

    tab

    ..........X ......................X ......................X
    ..........8 ......................6 ......................4
    ..........8 ......................7 ......................5
    ..........7 ......................7 ......................5
    ..........8 ......................6 ......................X
    ..........X ......................X ......................5

    ..........F9....................F13..................Am7b5


    | F9 F13 | Am7b5 F13 |

    Two beats of each chord, strum them a few times to get the tonality in your head, sequence them or use a looper etc
     
  15. Randy2270

    Randy2270 New Member

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    When I am not doing comparative rhythm changes from http://www.freddiegreen.org/technique/mp_compare.html, I am generally playing every chord with every voicing out of the picture chord or encyclopedia of chords book. All chords except for mMaj7, mMaj9, b5M9, #5M9, never found a reason to play those, but all other chords, yes, I usually do one or two keys a day. Also, I have been playing Basin Street Blues a lot, which tends to cheer me up.
     
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  16. Randy2270

    Randy2270 New Member

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    I remember seeing Dan Crary at a workshop once and he made a comment about practice. He said that you can make yourself miserable by practicing too much and then you won't want to play at all. The thing to do is play stuff you like and incorporate a little bit of rudiment along the way. We all hear stories about how some of the professional players will practice for like 8 hours a day, and that is fine if you are at Julliard or something, but if you are a working Joe like me, it just isn't practical. Just like in everything in life, a little moderation with zero guilt goes a long way.
     
  17. Yooper

    Yooper New Member

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    I've been trying to break the habit of bracketing scales/modes within the octaves between the 6th and 4th strings, or the 3rd and 1st strings. Too often I rely on rooting on the position on the E strings. It can save a lot of neck jumping when I work the scales between the 2nd and 5th strings along with the other patterns.

    This helps immensely as I'm learning more standards and finding new approaches to rock and blues.
     
  18. TheUnicorn

    TheUnicorn Member

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    This is a solid tip! Thanks Dave.
     
  19. Koula

    Koula Member

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    I'm working on those Memphis soul licks, you know, the kind Hendrix and Pops Staples played.

     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2015
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  20. Brian Toth

    Brian Toth New Member

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    I'm never not working on something. In addition to normal chops workouts and sight reading studies, I'm currently writing and arranging two new songs for my #1 daily and with our keyboard player, transcribing a couple of Sonny Rollins' solos, and working on new Lydian Dominant ideas.
     

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