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falkowskej jackshenry

which arps best to learn?

edited March 2011 in Gypsy Jazz 101 Posts: 24
I've never seen gypsy jazz chord progression which uses a maj7 chord. Most major6, minor6, dominant7,..................my question is what are the chord types that I should learn arpeggios for my lead playing? I don't want to learn bebop. To me nothing sounds worse than a major 7 chord. Nor do i want to learn triad arps ex. maj, min. What are all the aprs that I need to learn in gypsy jazz to be fluent? I noticed some minor7 chords used. but I'd rather arp the minor7. In other words I don't want to learn 1000 different solo arpegio chord types. Just the bread and butter. The "money" aprs for gypsy jazz.
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  • dennisdennis Montreal, QuebecModerator
    Posts: 2,131
    you can get a lot of gypsy jazz mileage with maj7 arpeggios , m7b5 arpeggios and diminished arpeggios

    maj7 works over the major chords, and also over the minor chords and even dominant chords if you're careful.. Cmaj7 over Am... Cmaj7 can also work over D7 if the D7 resolves to G major...

    m7b5 works over all sorts of chords... Bm7b5 can work over G7 or Dm.... Dm7b5 can work over G7... Gm7b5 can work over A7...

    diminished arpeggios are versatile too ... Abdim7 works over G7, Bb7, Db7 and E7.... you can also do Cdim7 over a C major chord!
  • Posts: 24
    Thanks Dennis. BTW I have your 'the art of accompaniment' dvd and think it's great. Looking back at my 1st post, I didn't explain myself very well. I know the major and minor 7 arps really good, and minor 7b5. i came from a bebop backround but literally quit when i heard gypsy jazz. IMHO guitar players are way behind sax or trumpet players in terms of phrasing, articulation, etc. Don't get me wrong , there are some fine guitar players of this generation (Jimmy Bruno, Pat Metheny, George Benson, Robert Conti) list could go on and on. But to me if you pin anyone of these players in comparison to the WW2 generation of horn players, (Miles Davis, Lee Morgan, Cannonball Adderley, Coltrane, etc) the horn guys are so much more personal and articulate. They're literally breathing life into their phrasing.

    Anyway back to the topic of this post. To me gypsy jazz works so much better for the guitar than bebop does. This is why I stopped and started gypsy jazz guitar. ok back to arps! should i not be learning major 6 and minor 6 arps, since those chords tend to be everywhere in gypsy jazz?
  • SoSlowSoSlow New
    Posts: 1
    Hi All - I am a real newbie to Gypsy Jazz - and to the guitar. I am slowly working my way through Michael's Gypsy Picking and am beginning to hear some improvement!!

    I am needing to understand more about chords to follow this thread - and am wondering about purchasing Steve Lynnworth's book - Understanding Chords. Is it a good choice? I am a little concerned - the liner notes say "absolutely no notation used". For my abilities I need tab - so is the book suitable for me?

    Any other recommendations?

    Thanks.
  • dennisdennis Montreal, QuebecModerator
    Posts: 2,131
    well i actually answered your question, no , you're much better off working on the ones i talked about... even if we use major 6/9 chords and whatnot the gypsy sound as far as soloing goes is based on the maj7 arpeggio for major chords (or triads), the m7b5 chord for minor and dominant chords... and the diminished arp for dominant or major chords...


    well actually, it's much more than arpeggios or scales... there's so much articulation going on and it also has a lot to do with melodic contour/context
  • Posts: 24
    hi dennis, 2 questions. Thanks for your insightful reply! 1. i'm planning on getting all 4 of your dvds. Do they show you pretty much all you need 2 know for improvising in this style? also i'm ordering an AJL guitar model jazz. what's your opinion of this guitar? 2. you transcribed a book of Rosenberg trio songs. are they note for note in tab? also i will buy this book but have no idea which albums the songs you transcribed are on. can u tell me which albums 2get so i can buy them and your transcribed book? thanks! Tom
  • BonesBones Moderator
    Posts: 3,127
    Hi Dennis,

    By using the m7b5 arp, do you mean for example Bm7b5 arp over a Dm chord (as well as over a Bm7b5 chord of course)?

    Thanks
  • klaatuklaatu Nova ScotiaProdigy Rodrigo Shopis D'Artagnan, 1950s Jacques Castelluccia
    Posts: 1,665
    dennis wrote:
    m7b5 works over all sorts of chords... Bm7b5 can work over G7 or Dm.... Dm7b5 can work over G7... Gm7b5 can work over A7...
    You can think of it in the opposite terms as well, e.g., play a G7 arp over either Bm7b5 OR Dm6; play C7 arp over Em7b5 OR Gm6; and so on.
    Benny

    "It's a great feeling to be dealing with material which is better than yourself, that you know you can never live up to."
    -- Orson Welles
  • SomeDudeSomeDude Brooklyn, NYNew
    Posts: 36
    Short answer: ALL OF THEM!

    Not all at once of coure, but yes, you should learn how to play everything in every position in every key. What that really means is really learning MAJOR and MINOR triads all over the neck and not just knowing the shapes but knowing the scale/chord degrees. It's actually not as hard as you might think, but it does take some real focus in the beginning. If you understand the notes you're playing and how they relate to the notes surrounding them then it really becomes quite natural to raise or lower a third, fifth, sixth or seventh degree. You're not learning arpeggio shapes, you're learning the language of music and applying it to Django's music.

    I'm going to get grief for this I'm sure: did Django know this theory stuff? No, but he knew what he was playing in his Own Sweet Way, and as the saying goes "you're not Django". [I'm not saying you in particular, but all of us, myself ESPECIALLY]. He knew the sounds of everything he played if not the names for them.

    If you hate the sound of the Maj7 then certainly you should know where it is in each key so that you may avoid it. Plus, as happens with most musicians, your ears grow with time and skill and previous horrible sounds start to become quite nice. I'm sorry if it sounds like a lecture, I wish someone had told me this stuff years ago; and I'm not saying go sit down and learn every arpeggio now (also wish someone told me not to try to do that) because that won't work. Focus on really mastering major/minor triads and then start incorporating other degrees into them. The best way i've found to that is to simply arpeggiate through songs in eigth notes as slow as it takes to do it in time without mistakes. I practice this every day even on songs I know and it really, really, really helps, but you have to go slow! It takes a long time and you're never really finished but if you can do that then you can play anything.

    Best of luck, let us all know how it goes.
  • jimvencejimvence Austin, TX✭✭
    Posts: 73
    Bones wrote:
    Hi Dennis,

    By using the m7b5 arp, do you mean for example Bm7b5 arp over a Dm chord (as well as over a Bm7b5 chord of course)?

    Thanks

    If I may jump in > Bm7b5 = Dm6 (with a different root note), and Dm and G7 are diatonic chords
  • klaatuklaatu Nova ScotiaProdigy Rodrigo Shopis D'Artagnan, 1950s Jacques Castelluccia
    Posts: 1,665
    jimvence wrote:
    If I may jump in > Bm7b5 = Dm6 (with a different root note), and Dm and G7 are diatonic chords
    Yes, technically that's true. But since we often substitute Dm6 for Dm (or Dm7), it's equally valid to play a Bm7b5 over Dm or or G7 arp over Dm6.
    Benny

    "It's a great feeling to be dealing with material which is better than yourself, that you know you can never live up to."
    -- Orson Welles
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