The Canadian Guitar Forum banner

1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
748 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I've been playing guitar since I was 9 (i'm 22 now) on and off. I played classical guitar for 5 years and got my grade 5 Conservatory with preliminary rudiments, but that was almost 5-6 years ago now. My chops are not nearly as good as they were back when I was playing classical, but they arent horrible. I think its mainly because i'm getting bored with playing the same kind of stuff all the time. Mainly Rock, folk, blues kind of guitar.

So i've decided to look into Jazz guitar, since i've heard many people say that it will make you look at the guitar in a completely different way. I am kind of lost at how to start though. I'm considering taking lessons (in Toronto), buying books, listening to jazz, etc.

Can anyone suggest a good starting point for me?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
822 Posts
I would first recommend you start listening to old jazz records, and it does'nt have to be guitar players. Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Thelonius Monk, Charlie Parker. You have to learn the language. The instrument you play is secondary to the jazz concept of improvisation. Since you are classically trained you are probably bored with the limited harmonies used in most rock music and may be somewhat constrained by "the rules" of music.
But also, your classical training is a big advantage over someone like me who was brought up on rock&roll and never learned to read music. Whether you read or not, you have to have ears and a free spirit to play jazz because what is written is only the skeleton, and the flesh and blood is improvised.
Blues is related to jazz because although it is very simple harmonically, it is also very improvisational.
When you say you want to learn to play "jazz guitar", you should be saying, "I want to learn to play jazz". Catch my drift?
One last thought. Jazz is an entire universe. There are many different styles of jazz that are so diverse that it seems strange to label them as one, but what bonds them together is the freedom allowed in the expression. I'm guessing you have learned discipline, now you have to learn to use that discipline to experience total freedom. It's a spiritual journey. Embark, my son.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
748 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I'm a little bit taken back, Im not much of a spiritual man. :p
Sounds like you probably know what youre talking about, could you suggest some records I should check out? Anything I can download off Itunes possibly?

Thanks so much for your replys.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
822 Posts
I don't know what's available at iTunes. There are probably some contemporary artists there but they may not have the old masters. If you're a guitarist you have to listen to Django Rheinhart. He is revered by many jazz guitarists. Some of the other greats did'nt record under their own names so you'll find them playing with singers or horn players. An example, Herb Ellis played for years with Ella Fitzgerald. There's Wes Montgomery, Joe Pass, etc.
In the 70's, fusion introduced John McLaughlin, Larry Coryell, John Abercrombie, Al DiMeola, Pat Metheny. The fusion genre was/is dominated by guitar players because it was a rock/jazz mix. Do a google search for jazz guitar and take it from there. I don't really know what style of jazz you may be into. You have to really dig to find the best music because it is rarely popular, but it's out there. There are tons of compilation CD's that will introduce you to different players before you go and buy one of their records.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
255 Posts
You could try guys like John Schofield, Mike Stern, Scott Henderson, Al Dimeola, Wes Montgomery, and my favorite George Benson. :D
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top