A turnaround is a short chord progression that takes you back to the start of a song, a solo section or even takes you to a new key. Sometimes they are used as an introduction or an ending to a song. The chords of a turnaround range from simple to complicated, but all turnarounds are… Continue reading How To Create A Blues Turnaround
Tenths-a third plus an octave-can add an extra dimension to a composition by imparting depth and emotion to a melody or bass line. Tenths can even bring life and energy to a simple scale. Try playing this E major scale harmonized with parallel tenths. The upper notes add a bit of color without obscuring the… Continue reading Study in Tenths
This jazzy tune in 3/4 features a simple melody supported by some rich extended and altered chords. The pedal E in the lower voice in the beginning provides a measure-level pulse, but also creates some extra dissonance that obscures the harmony. Can you name the chord in the first measure? Maybe it's an Ebmb5#7/E (yikes!)… Continue reading Jazz Waltz for Guitar
Composing from a blank page can particularly challenging. Where do you start when you can start anywhere and with anything? Today though, the whole tone scale was on my mind, and as I was experimenting, a familiar Bach piece, the Musette from English Suite #3, jumped out at me. The first four notes in particular,… Continue reading Baroque Impressionism?
Harmonics are a natural feature of vibrating objects. For string instruments like the guitar, harmonics are played by lightly touching a string at certain places to mute the fundamental pitch (the note you ear when you play an open string), but still allowing the overtones of the string to sound. The loudest harmonics occur at… Continue reading Harmonics Study