If you are learning to become a jazz guitarist, you might be one of many that struggle to express captivating, contemporary jazz harmony. One of the best ways to overcome this obstacle is to take a simple melodic approach. One approach is combining some commonly encountered arpeggio shapes as chord substitutions. This way, we can imply complex super arpeggios while maintaining some harmonic “hipness.”
In her course, Take 5: Jazz Super Arpeggios, Sheryl Bailey debunks the common misconception that modern jazz harmony is convoluted. She shares her approaches to utilizing some simple shapes, and moving them around to achieve different harmonies.
Here are three jazz guitar arpeggio lessons from the course. For the full course, check out Sheryl Bailey’s full course, Take 5: Jazz Super Arpeggios on TrueFire!
Jazz Arpeggios Guitar Lesson – Level 5: Turned Up – Overview
In this tune, I use 3 moveable ii-V-I patterns starting with using a maj7 arp up a minor 3rd: Dbmaj7 on Bbmin7. Then, I raise the 5th of the Dbmaj7 to Dbmaj7#5 over Eb7: which creates an Eb79 #11 13. Next, we move the Db up a whole step to Ebmaj7 over Abmaj7 to create an Abmaj79 #11 6. Pattern #2 (ii-V-I) uses maj7 arpeggios moving up a minor 3rd, then down 1/2 step to create a min79, dom7susb9b13 and then maj79 6 #11. Finally, the ii-V-I Pattern #3 uses Bbmin7 over Bbmin7, moving up a minor 3rd to Dbmin7 over Eb7, which creates an Eb7susb9b13, then moving the min7 down 1/2 step to Cmin7 over Abmaj7 – creating an AbMaj79.
Jazz Arpeggios Guitar Lesson – Level 5: Turned Up – Performance
This progression comes from the Miles David classic “Tune Up.” So, it is a perfect set of changes to experiment with using these Moveable II V I Patterns. Miles constructed this tune in a very common harmonic pattern of II V I’s moving down in whole steps. So, it is perfect to experiment with all 5 of them. Furthermore, we can add a little extra sumthin’ to take you to some real contemporary harmony.
Jazz Arpeggios Guitar Lesson – Level 5: Turned Up – Breakdown
ii-V-I Pattern #1: maj7, maj7#5, then up a whole step maj7, so Gmaj7 over Emin7 = Emin79, Gmaj7#5 over A7 = A79#11 13, then Amaj7 over Dmaj7 = Dmaj79 6 #11. ii-V-I Pattern #2: maj7 up a minor 3rd, then down 1/2 step – Fmaj7/Dmin7 = Dmin79, Abmaj7/G7 = G7susb9b13, Gmaj7/Cmaj7 = Cmaj79 6 #11. ii-V-I Pattern #3: min7 up a minor 3rd, down 1/2 step. Cmin7/Cmin7, Ebmin7/F7 = F7susb9b13, Dmin7/Bbmaj7 = Bbmaj79. ii-V-I Pattern #4: min7 to min/maj7 up whole step min7. Emin7/Emin7, Emin/maj7/A7 = A79#11, F#min7/Dmaj7= Dmaj79. ii-V-I Pattern #5: maj7 to min7, down 1/2 step – Fmaj7/Dmin7 = Dmin79, Fmin7/G7 = G7susb9b13, Emin7/Cmaj7= Cmaj79…and I’ve added one last tricky one I call the “Special Sauce”: maj7 to maj7#5, up whole step to maj7#5: Ebmaj7/Cmin7 = Cmin79, Ebmaj7#5/F7 = F79 #11 13, Fmaj7#5/Bbmaj7 = Bbmaj7- super trendy sound of the millenial jazzers!
Digging these free jazz guitar arpeggios lessons? Check out Sheryl Bailey’s full course, Take 5: Jazz Super Arpeggios.