Swapping out a guitar pick for our fingers opens the door to one of the most organic and rewarding ways to play guitar — especially when it comes to jazz!
Performing multiple parts synchronously — walking bass lines, chord voicings, melodies, and solo lines — Sean McGowan’s Fingerstyle Jazz Handbook will enable you to play full, rich solo jazz guitar arrangements that would be impossible to execute with a pick.
Here are 9 free videos from the course to help you get started. For access to the full course, check out Sean McGowan’s Fingerstyle Jazz Handbook on TrueFire!
Fingerstyle Jazz Guitar Lesson – C-Saw Blues – Overview
Here I’ll show you a 12-bar blues in the key of C that features chordal interplay with a walking four bassline in the style of Joe Pass.
Fingerstyle Jazz Guitar Lesson – C-Saw Blues – Performance
This is my performance of the C-Saw Blues. Watch closely at how the chord jabs interplay with the walking bassline. We will break this down in the next video so you can learn at your own pace.
Fingerstyle Jazz Guitar Lesson – C-Saw Blues – Breakdown
Here, I break this blues etude down for you. Using your thumb to perform the walking four bassline, as well as to mute the strings as you play the lead lines is an important factor in this lesson.
Fingerstyle Jazz Guitar Lesson – Starlight – Overview
“Starlight” is a medium tempo étude based on the chord progression of “Stella by Starlight”, that utilizes the finger articulation and independence exercises by seamlessly integrating lead lines on top of moving chords.
Fingerstyle Jazz Guitar Lesson – Starlight – Performance
This piece is tremendous practice for getting your fingerstyle lead playing as well as your bassline walking chops up to speed. I will break this one down in the next video.
Fingerstyle Jazz Guitar Lesson – Starlight – Breakdown
Here, we’ll practice playing chord jabs in different places in the measure while sustaining the melody. Some of these left hand techniques may take some extra practice.
Fingerstyle Jazz Guitar Lesson – Celestial Rhythm – Overview
Celestial Rhythm Changes! Let’s check out the classic Rhythm Changes progression in the key of Bb that moves through 4, 5 and 6-note chord voicings in tandem with a bassline and bebop solo lines.
Fingerstyle Jazz Guitar Lesson – Celestial Rhythm – Performance
Here’s my performance so you can hear how the whole piece sounds. Next we’ll break this down.
Fingerstyle Jazz Guitar Lesson – Celestial Rhythm – Breakdown
Let’s explore some rhythmic variations!
Digging these free lessons? Check out Sean McGowan’s full course, Fingerstyle Jazz Handbook.