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Blues: A Modern Jazz Guitar Approach - Part I

September 20, 2013
Tom Lippincott
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The Blues: A Modern Jazz Guitar Approach - Part I

The twelve-bar blues progression has been a mainstay of the repertoire of every jazz musician since the birth of jazz in the early twentieth century.  Over the years, as jazz evolved and sub-styles emerged, the blues form proved itself to be both quintessential and highly adaptable to the varied developments in jazz.  In the early twenty-first century, a new generation of jazz musicians has reinvigorated the genre, but the blues continues to be an essential part of the modern style. If you're interested in learning more about how to incorporate modern elements while still maintaining a thread of the tradition when you play over the blues progression, then this class is for you.

In this class, the blues form will be explored in detail with the goal of applying modern jazz melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic vocabulary to the progression.  First will be a brief survey of the structure and history of the form along with exercises for gaining mastery over the basic harmonies.  Then, common mainstream approaches for melodic and harmonic variations on the progression will be outlined.  Finally, modern approaches to melody, harmony, and rhythm will be applied to the blues form.

The Blues: A Modern Jazz Guitar Approach - Part I covers:

  • Basic jazz blues progressions defined and analyzed, including harmonic function and chord/scale chart
  • Arpeggio and scale studies for Bb and F blues with emphasis on fingerboard mastery and voice leading
  • Discussion of approach notes and target notes and the "bebop scale" with examples
  • Discussion of mixing blues vocabulary with outlining chord changes in improvisations
  • Tri-tone substitution
  • Melodic minor mode substitution
  • Diminished scale use
  • Basic polyrhythm applications for melodic and harmonic improvising; groupings of three
  • Modal approach to the blues, including polytonal side-slipping
  • Applying 3-part-4ths to the blues
  • Running time: 92 minutes
  • 14 pages of written examples (including chord diagrams, standard notation and TAB), exercises, and example solos with close-up views of the performances
  • Each example performance is titled for easy navigation
  • MP3 backing tracks for all written examples and solos

Also see part II of this blues jazz lesson .

Average customer rating:
5 stars Total votes: 15

100% Satisfaction Guaranteed! If for whatever reason, you are not satisfied with a class, just let Mike know and he’ll give you another class in its place or a full refund.


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Blues: A Modern Jazz Guitar Approach - Part II

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Customer Reviews:

Moncef Fadal  (Thursday, 22 December 2016)
Rating: 5
Very rich in content ! Tom is very organized , and doesn't waste time , so everything is realy important ! Highly recommand this!

David Tardio  (Sunday, 11 December 2016)
Rating: 5
I really like how Tom starts with the basics as a foundation for the more advanced material. He is an excellent teacher. Everything is presented clearly and systematically. Because of this you can go back and review certain sections (like using melodic minor or the diminished scale) whenever you need to. Highly recommended.

Jovica Savin  (Sunday, 11 December 2016)
Rating: 5
Again: If you are curious and interested in Jazz Guitar, this is for you! Tom Lippincott is great teacher!
Meanwhile I have some other classes too, and they all are great!

Jay Heaverlo  (Tuesday, 02 August 2016)
Rating: 5
Tom's classes are extremely well put together! The course materials are clear and thorough. I highly recommend any of his courses!!!

Ivan Hinojosa  (Tuesday, 27 October 2015)
Rating: 5
I learned the fundamentals of Blues Jazz years ago, but Tom makes me a new perpective o this, and explain clearly about that important is work on basic on any style to play in another dimension later. Tom is the best serious, clear and clever teacher that i see.

Extremely recommended



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Jack Wilkins

"Once again, another little masterpiece [4/1/12] from the maestro Mr.Herberman. This time he has managed to exemplify, through concise and exhaustive examples,the most fundamental and crucial approaches to mastering fluency in improvising through the changes of any given standard or chord progression...If fluency is what you're looking for, go no further than here...A gem....Thanks Steve." - Dave W. (Dublin, IRL)