JAZZ CHORD SOLO­ING

Guitar Techniques - - TalkBack -

Thank you so much for your re­cent les­son on solo­ing with jazz chords. It’s some­thing I’ve looked at for years in to­tal won­der, be­liev­ing it’s some mys­ti­cal art or par­tic­u­lar ge­nius on the part of a se­lect band of play­ers. I sup­pose I should have re­alised that there are ‘ways and means’ of crack­ing the code. And while I wouldn’t pre­tend to have nailed the en­tire process, the door has cer­tainly been opened and I’m al­ready mak­ing head­way. I never, ever thought I’d have the where­withal to think on my feet enough to solo us­ing chords – I even strug­gled with 3rds be­fore – but Mil­ton Mermikides’ ex­pla­na­tion and ex­am­ples have made me re­alise these things can be done in man­age­able stages. Okay, I’m still at stage one, but be­fore this I never thought I could even get to this point! Thanks, GT!

Frank Nor­ton

That’s al­ways been a mys­tery to me, too, Frank (in fact I said so in my editorial that month). But as Mil­ton ex­plained, it’s a case of un­der­stand­ing the the­ory at­tached to chord solo­ing – knowl­edge of in­ver­sions and in­ter­vals, the CAGED sys­tem and so on. And while the ge­nius of a Joe Pass or a Martin Tay­lor can­not sim­ply be taught, the el­e­ments that they are us­ing to ap­ply their ge­nius most cer­tainly can. Glad you en­joyed it, and we are most happy to have Dr Mermikides on hand to sup­ply such eru­dite and re­ward­ing lessons.

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