Tag Archives: Block chords

Common Tone Substitutions of the Harmonized Major Scale

Common tone substitution is a must have tool in your comping tool box. It is fairly straight forward and is easily incorporated, giving you exponentially more options of chord voicings to choose from. Every chord has other diatonic chords sharing … Continue reading

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Wes Montgomery Chord Solo Transcription: Unit 7

Today’s transcription comes from Montreal Jazz guitarist Pat Mahoney. A high energy chord solo from one of Wes Montgomery’s Best recordings: Smokin at the Half Note with the Wynton Kelly Trio. This is a great study in block chords. Actually … Continue reading

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Soloing with Block Chords Part 6: Major

Good music should reflect life! Life has it’s ups and downs, happy and sad, rain and sunshine, winter and summer …tension and release. The beauty of anything is so much more vivid when seen in contrast to ugly. If I … Continue reading

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Soloing with Block Chords Part 5: Altered Dominant

The ability to find new applications for old material is one of the greatest musical endeavors you can undertake. I had a teacher tell me one time that I already knew all the jazz vocabulary I ever needed, but I … Continue reading

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Wes Montgomery Chord Solo Transcription: ‘Round Midnight

With all the recent talk around here about block chords, I thought today we would go direct to the horses mouth, or should I say the master’s guitar. Wes Montgomery tastefully combines single lines, octaves, and block chords with incredible … Continue reading

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Soloing with Block Chords Part 4: Whole Tone Scale

As I peered through the bushes the purple monkey driving a tractor spotted me. I knew I was in trouble when he climbed down asked me for a banana…”cue whole-tone dream sequence music”…”fade to black” Today we will be exploring … Continue reading

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Soloing with Block Chords Part 3: Half-Whole diminished

One of my favorite scales to use over a dominant chord is the half-whole diminished. The symmetrical nature of this scale really lends itself to block chords. (half-step, whole step, half, whole, etc.). The tensions that we get over a … Continue reading

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Soloing with Block Chords: Part 2 (Unaltered Dominant)

“Gimme some block chords, Red” – Miles Davis If you listen carefully to the beginning of “You’re My Everything” on the album Relaxin’ with the Miles Davis Quintet, you can hear Miles stop Red Garland’s intro and tell him to … Continue reading

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Chord Soloing with Block Chords:Part 1(Minor Chords)

In our quest for chord soloing freedom, I thought I would jump right into the deep end and begin a series of articles about harmonizing melodies. This harmonization is sometimes called block chords. The term “Block chords” is borrowed from … Continue reading

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