Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 2

S

TheFingertip
String Quartet

BY MORRIS ACEVEDO
THE SECRET TO PLAYING SMOOTH
chord changes lies in voice-leading. Simply put, this means paying attention to
how each note in a chord moves to the
next chords notes. To get a feel for voiceleading, lets try several variations on the
same progression: Am7 - D7 - Gmaj7 Cmaj7-F#m7b5-B7-Em7.
Notice how Examples 1 and 2 stay on
the inside four strings, while Examples 3
and 4 descend and ascend on a split string
set: six, four, three, and two. By using in-

versions, we can creep along on the same


string set throughout an example.
As you move from chord to chord,
imagine each string is a separate instrument or voice. Listen for common tones
and stepwise (half- or whole-step) motion
within each line. Now try to hear the progression as a set of four independent lines
moving up or down the fretboard. Hey
you have a string quartet at your fingertips!
Once youve played these examples,
transpose the progression to different keys.

# b
Em7

# 4

ww

===================
&

#
=
( n )w

Ex. 1

T
A
B

Am7

D7

Gmaj7

Cmaj7

F m7 5 B7

10
9
10
10

10
7
10
9

8
7
9
9

8
5
9
7

7
5
7
7

7
4
7
6

5
4
5
5

# b
Em7
ww

#4

n
#

(
)

===================
& 4

=
Ex. 2

T
A
B

Am7

D7

Gmaj7

Cmaj7

F m7 5 B7

5
2
5
3

7
5
7
5

7
4
5
5

8
5
9
7

10
9
10
9

10
8
9
9

12
9
12
10

Finally, try voice-leading other common


progressionsImaj7-VIm7-IIm7-V7, for instance, or a backcycled series of IIm7-V7Imaj7 cadences. Some pointers:
Be careful how you use major 7th
chords in the 3rd inversion, such as Ex. 1s
Gmaj7. In some contexts, this voicing
sounds too dissonant; in other situations,
its totally cool.
Stay on one string set for the entire
progression. Doing so will force you to hunt
for new voicingsthats good.
Use the lowest note in each chord as
your focus point.
Keep traveling in one direction along
the fretboard, until you run out of room,
or your ear tells you its time to change direction.
Wherever possible, build each line
from common tones and stepwise motion.
Once youve explored the single-

string-set concept, experiment with


changing string sets in the middle of the
progression, and try voice-leading the
changes to your favorite tunes. Skillful use
of inversions and voice leading makes for
colorful comping.
g

North Texas State and Berklee alum


Morris Acevedo lectures on jazz improv at
U.C. Berkeley, directs the Berkeley Jazz Guitar Ensemble, and teaches at the Blue Bear
School of American Music in San Francisco.

# b
Em7

# 4

#
w
( n )w

w
===================
& 4
=

Ex. 3

T
A
B

Am7

D7

Gmaj7

Cmaj7

F m7 5 B7

10
12
10

10
11
10

8
11
9

8
9
9

7
9
7

7
8
7

5
7
5

12

10

10

# b
Em7
ww
#4

( n )w

===================
& 4
w
=

Ex. 4

T
A
B

Am7

D7

Gmaj7

Cmaj7

F m7 5 B7

1
2
2
3

3
5
4
5

7
7
5
7

8
9
9
8

7
9
7
8

10
11
9
11

12
12
12
12

S
E
S
S
I
O
N
S