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Starting jazz/blues guitar

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by DarQraven, May 21, 2010.

  1. DarQraven

    DarQraven New Member

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    So. Winter is over. My fingers are once again in a moveable state, and I can play the guitar again. Needless to say, my skills are extremely rusty after nearly half a year of no playing.

    I'm thinking of venturing into some of the softer styles of guitar, and I know some of you here are into that stuff.
    So, what can you recommend a 3-year guitar player for starting out in this field?
    Any tutorials or songs or guides to get me started? I know how to play and I know chords (any that I don't know, I can look up). What I'm interested is cool riffs or licks to get me interested and motivated to play again.

    I know my way around a fretboard, I just can't find my way around all the jazz and blues out there. Seems I can't find any cool songs that don't feature a 200 note insane solo somwhere in the middle.
    Any suggestions at all are welcome.

    And yes, I am aware that jazz is all about improvisation. I want to get there eventually, but I need some background and a technique refresher, else I'll just end up shredding metallica riffs over a jazz backing track.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2010
  2. Plumb_Drumb

    Plumb_Drumb yumb

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    that would be hilarious though dude.

    You could do some stage comedy with that.
     
  3. kiff

    kiff That guy from Texas. Give me some Cash

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    or slayer ;)


    ever heard of guitar pro? It's a sequencer program that plays tab. you can isolate the guitars, bass, drums and everything. it includes many practice sessions for blues, rock, etc...
     
  4. DarQraven

    DarQraven New Member

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    Yeah, I've got version 5 permanently installed. However, I'm looking for something inspiring. Exercises and chord lists are all over the internet, but a sequencer program probably doesn't have the quality that makes great jazz players great;)

    Just a song that got you guys started is fine too. No requirements for difficulty or anything.
     
  5. ambershee

    ambershee Nimbusfish Rawks

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    A decent book and CD combo you can play along to always goes a long way. What's better however is if you can find some folks to play with.
     
  6. thewalkingman

    thewalkingman ssssssssssss bugger!

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    Until you kill a man in Memphis, your woman has done left you, and you are doing your third stint in rehab you cant even begin to play the Blues.
     
  7. DarQraven

    DarQraven New Member

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    I could gain 30kg, suit up, wear sunglasses at all times and learn an Italian accent, though. That oughta work...
     
  8. Thrash123

    Thrash123 Obey Leash Laws

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    I grew up on blues myself, as well as being a jazz trombone player. The one thing I can say is most important to both styles would be scales. Knowing your scales helps build jazz chord theory, and also allows you something to base your improvisation off of.

    For learning blues improv on guitar, grab some BB King tunes and learn the pentatonic minor blues scale (it's easy). Then you just figure out the key, and go from there, doing fills. Sammy Nestico had, I believe, some practice CDs out there that I used to improvise to when jamming, but I didn't find em'. I can also toss you a couple background tracks that I've written & recorded for you to improv to, if you like.
     
  9. Jacks:Revenge

    Jacks:Revenge ╠╣E╚╚O

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    the blues are not "soft."
     
  10. theabyss

    theabyss No One Here Gets Out Alive

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    can be done:

    Metallica Gets Jazzy! :eek::D
     
  11. Soggy_Popcorn

    Soggy_Popcorn THE Irish Ninja

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    Darq, as a fellow non-improvising player, let me just tell you now that if you don't wanna delve into music theory, don't even bother trying to "learn jazz riffs and licks." I like jazz too, but it really doesn't work like that.

    Also, blues is not the same as jazz (the title was weird).
     
  12. DarQraven

    DarQraven New Member

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    Indeed. I know there's a difference, but to my inexperienced ear I'll often find a similar style of picking/playing as far as guitars are concerned between the two music styles. If this is a misconception of mine, well .. that's why I created this thread.

    Let's rephrase that, then. I want to get into clean/slightly dirty electric guitar playing without resorting to country or pop. I like how jazz and blues sound, so those are logical choices.

    @Jacks. They are 'soft' if you compare them to what I usually play. Lead gain on 8, mid dropped all the way to 2 and playing at 200bpm quarters is not your typical jazz sound. Actually I think something got lost in translation. By soft I don't mean less manly or emotional, I mean cleaner, less focus on power/anger/energy, the way metal and some hardrock usually do.

    @Soggy: Eventually I do want to get into improvisation and I do know my way around musical theory somewhat already, I'm just looking for examples of what fans consider 'good' jazz. Jazz 101, if you will, so I can explore the genre and its guitar sounds a bit without browsing CD collections endlessly in search for a song I might like. The playing along with solos would only be necessary as long as it takes for me to get a feel for the genre and get my hands fit for the weird shapes and chords I've seen in tabs so far.

    @Thrash, many thanks. I would appreciate the backing tracks, if only because I'm interested in fellow BuF'ers talents.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2010
  13. Jacks:Revenge

    Jacks:Revenge ╠╣E╚╚O

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    did I say jazz?

    I said the blues.
    the blues are anything but soft.

    jazz is soft.
    but jazz is not the blues.
     
  14. DarQraven

    DarQraven New Member

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    Then substitute blues for jazz and my statement still applies. The actual (Dutch) word I'm trying to use doesn't seem to exist in the English language, therefore, my use of the word 'soft'.
     
  15. Jacks:Revenge

    Jacks:Revenge ╠╣E╚╚O

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    then it depends on what you mean by "soft," I guess.

    because I can't substitute blues for jazz; blues is very different from jazz.
    I would readily describe jazz as soft, no hesitation there. but the blues are heavy and gritty, crunchy and wailing.

    you can't play the blues if you don't feel it.
    and you won't get anywhere by faking it.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2010
  16. DarQraven

    DarQraven New Member

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    Yes, very nice.

    Any particular songs that you jammed to and enjoyed, btw? Might be an easier question than the wall of text I've posted above.
     
  17. Jacks:Revenge

    Jacks:Revenge ╠╣E╚╚O

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    well, you said something about power and energy. or anger. and how the blues has less of it?

    there's not "less focus" on power or energy in blues.
    I would argue that the blues has more power and energy than most styles of music. just because other styles might be played louder doesn't mean they have more energy.
    the blues are about feeling.
    you have to feel it if you really want to get anything out of it.

    as for the kind of blues I like to play and/or play along to, the Black Keys provide an excellent example of contemporary blues progression:

    [m]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nVTRGe5IxK8[/m]

    [m]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=653PLUXWQuA[/m]

    [m]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOkWCJilkwo[/m]

    but it can be as loud and angry as you want, just as it can be quiet and reflective.
    there's several directions the blues can take you, as with most styles of music it has sub-styles and sub-genres.

    [m]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=An6z4TaLmT0[/m]

    [m]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DZqmvSOIflE[/m]

    [m]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_R2lLSJKs-Q[/m]

    the best advice anyone could give you right now is to just listen to various blues artists until you find a style or sound that you like best.
    you'll come to find how versatile the blues can be. it's influenced nearly every facet of popular rock music today. in fact, conventional rock wouldn't exist without blues.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2010
  18. hal

    hal Dictator Staff Member

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    Do you have any favorite blues guitarists? That might be a good place to start. It really helps if you enjoy what you are playing and are familiar with how it sounds.

    I got into blues many years ago through listening to rock and learning about the blues influences many of them had. Eric Clapton is an artist that's familiar to most and he's definitely got deep roots in blues. You can hear the influence in any of his music, but the CD From the Cradle is an especially good and diverse example of that. From there you might find an interest in and appreciation for some of the greats... Muddy Waters, Willie Dixon, Leroy Carr, John Lee Hooker and Robert Johnson (to name a few).

    Bottom line. Start with what you like and know and then go from there.

    As far as Jazz/Blues.. one listen to someone like Jimi Hendrix will dispel the notion that the two genres have nothing in common.

    [M]<object width="640" height="505"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/bp0-STZvbD8&hl=en_US&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/bp0-STZvbD8&hl=en_US&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="640" height="505"></embed></object>[/M]
     

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