#1
I'm trying out for the jazz band at my school as a guitar. I made a thread last year on this when I knew very little about any theory or even the guitar. But within a year, I'd like to say I've advanced like crazy. Now I can build chords and look at the seventh chords on the sheet music and know exactly what to play. Basically, I think that as far as understanding the audition sheet music goes, I'm A-OK.

Now I've come across a problem. How to get chords to work right on the guitar. I know basics, like you would usually be OK to omit the root and fifth if they cause trouble as the bass and piano will cover them. But I have a few questions regarding some chords.

tl;dr: Comfirm the shapes to be ideal (and if notes are wrong as well):


F 

E|---
B|-1- C
G|-2- A
D|-3- F
A|---
E|---

F/E (would you just lower the F a semitone instead?)

E|---
B|-1- C
G|-2- A
D|-3- F
A|-x-
E|-0- E

Am7(b5)/Eb (complicated!)

E|-3-
B|-5-
G|-4-
D|-x-
A|-6-
E|---

Db7(#11)

E|-3- G
B|-1- C
G|-1- G#
D|-3- F
A|---
E|---

C7 (#9,#5)

E|-x-
B|-3- D#
G|-3- A#
D|-6- G#
A|-7- E
E|---

Bdim7

E|-4- Ab
B|-6- F
G|-7- D
D|-9- B (could probably make the reach with practice; worth it?)
A|---
E|---


I'm a bit hesitant to remove the root and fifth at times, because sometimes the original chord's tone sometimes seems a bit off. Should I ignore this and assume that if I played it in a jazz setting the piano and bass would come to the rescue? (lol)

Thanks for the help in advance!
#2
Just learn both shapes. You can never assume that the bass and piano are going to be covering a specific note at a certain time (Due to walking and comping) unless it is a specifically written in part. Play the full voicings (I would recommend learning at least three different voicings for each chord type, with the root on different strings) and If you find that the pianist and bassist are just playing by the books, play the modified voicings, or melody voicings of those chords.Just listen and you should be able to tell. Just my 0.03.

EDIT: some of those shapes seem a little bit bizzare. especially the diminished one, if you are playing two cords to a bar at 180 bpm, it would take a lot of practice that could be spend learning new shapes or improv stuff. Honestly, in the couple of jazz bands that I'm in, i've never had to use voicings like that, economy of motion and being able to play every chord is more important IMO to having some unique chord voicings. Other than that, the F/E is right, you play the note under the slash as a bass note. That A-7b5/Eb is a little bit weird, but you could use it, and the same goes for the rest of the chords. Its really your choice if you want to go with the traditional voicings or the more difficult ones, just make sure you can do either without jumping all over the neck. Hope that helps a bit.
Last edited by Envion at Oct 20, 2009,
#3
It might not have been the right board, but still, thanks for the help.