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jazz guitar newbie

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 lars
(@lars)
Noble Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 1120
Topic starter  

I've never been much into jazz (playing). But somehow I subscribe to this jazzguitar site - and recently I received this lesson on walking bass comping.
http://www.jazzguitar.be/walking_bass_guitar.html

I decided to give it a try and it is fun. Completely different from what I usually play, and really something to practice. But a few questions:

1. would it be stupid to practice this with a pick muting the 5th string when needed with the thumb/index on the fretting hand. I know it's good for my picking accuracy, but I wonder if it would take me anywhere along the jazz road, or if I should just use fingers which I do to little anyway.
2. I tend to use my thumb a lot on the 6th string for the shell chords - F7 1x121x, Bdim 7x676 etc. Is this generally a good idea.
3. Any ideas for (easy) songs to continue with - where I can make up a walking bass line with chords on the top - I have this Real book, so there is a lot to choose from ...

thanks
lars

...only thing I know how to do is to keep on keepin' on...

LARS kolberg http://www.facebook.com/sangerersomfolk


   
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(@scrybe)
Famed Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2241
 

I do the thumb-over thing too, and its never hurt me!! I'm a jazz newbie, too, though. From what I've seen in countless hours on youtube, 'proper' jazzers don't do thumb-over, ever, it seems. But I've been trying to learn some Jim Hall style rhythm playing, and I find that it sometimes works better that way (I use the thumb to mute the 5th, too) and other times (depending on what I'm playing) just using fingers works better. I'll try tabbing a couple of things to illustrate a bit later (once I've woken up properly, lol)

Autumn Leaves got drilled into me at one stage, and I have some pretty jazzy chords I can tab out if ya want for that. Once I've actually got to a point where I'm comfortable doing the comping-rhythm thing and understand a bit more of the theory involved, I'm gonna suggest it to the powers that be as a lesson on here. But right now, I'm all-ears so I couldn't explain the principles behind what I'm doing fully just yet. :cry:

Oh, and thanks for the cake. :wink:

hth

Ra Er Ga.

Ninjazz have SuperChops.

http://www.blipfoto.com/Scrybe


   
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(@voodoo_merman)
Reputable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 368
 

Using your thumb to get the bass notes is a necessary and often needed technique when playing solo jazz guitar. There are freaks out there that seldom have to do it (Joe Pass and Wes Montgomery for example). This is possibly due to personal preference. But, guys like Pat Metheny and Tal Farlow do it constantly when playing solo. A close examination of some of these solo pieces reveals that there is sometimes no other physically possible way to get the bass notes in time and still keeping the melody and/or chords ringing.

I personally feel that it is an excellent skill to acquire. If you can train yourself to the point where it comes naturally, you can seriously open up some harmonic possibilities that are pretty impressive to listen to.

In terms of learning how to do it, I personally wouldn't go anywhere near actual jazz songs just yet. I would start off with very simple songs. I'm talking "Marry had a little lamb" and "twinkle, twinkle, little star" simple. And, then jazzing them up with the bass notes and altered melody. The best way to learn something new is slowly. Once you get the hang of doing super simple songs, then I guess you can start trying some of the simpler jazz standards. Remember, any and every song is a jazz song...potentially. I bet you could make those easy songs sound great with some bass notes thrown in.

At this time I would like to tell you that NO MATTER WHAT...IT IS WITH GOD. HE IS GRACIOUS AND MERCIFUL. HIS WAY IS IN LOVE, THROUGH WHICH WE ALL ARE. IT IS TRULY -- A LOVE SUPREME --. John Coltrane


   
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 lars
(@lars)
Noble Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 1120
Topic starter  

Ok - thumbs up ... ehr... over then - thanks

...only thing I know how to do is to keep on keepin' on...

LARS kolberg http://www.facebook.com/sangerersomfolk


   
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