#1
I was just wondering if anybody new any good jazz chord progressions or songs that would be good for me to learn on guitar? I'm an intermediate level guitarist (I can sweep, do legato, tapping and all that) and I'm in a post-rock band, but we're trying to experiment a bit and my theory's pretty poor so I thought learning some jazz would help me a fair bit - particularly after watching Tosin Abasi, haha.

Also, we're moving onto 7-strings pretty soon and I was wondering if anybody new any full barre chords for a 7-string that I could work around?

Thanks, Henry
#3
If you have the cash, invest in a "Real Book." A must have for any jazz musician.
and if you can sweep fluently I would no longer classify you as intermediate.
#5
Definitely "The Real Book" would be a great addition to anyone wanting to get into jazz. (or any fake book for that matter, but the most abundant one is "the Real Book")

But you will need to also do a lot of listening around the genre to fully gain it's benefits.

A great standard with a cool chord progression to solo over is "Mr P.C." by John Coltrane.
Take a listen to it on youtube or something, it pretty much just begs for cool licks and is fairly simple to solo over, the changes are all simple to keep up with, etc etc.

As already mentioned, the ii-V-I is great (also the minor ii-V-I) to work on your jazz playing.

Just listen around!
I can't tell you how much listening to artists has helped my jazz playing.
Take a look into guys like Coltrane, Wayne Shorter, Charles Mingus, Miles Davis, Wes Montgomery, there are loads out there!
#7
ii V I IV
III VI II V
ii V I then I becomes the ii of another ii V I
all the best.
(insert self-aggrandizing quote here)
#8
The guys punk ninja suggested are all good to listen to, but I wouldn't recommend trying to jump into any coltrane or mingus tunes right off the bat (that isn't to say that you shouldn't at least give them a listen - charles mingus especially. Go get Mingus Ah Um and listen to it 5 times, then listen to it another 5 times in the car, and then another 5 times every month for the rest of your life).

I'd recommend starting off with some Louis Armstrong. I'm sure a lot of people think that his music is just "basic swing," which has somehow become synonymous with "easy jazz" in today's world, but if you take five minutes to look at the charts to some of his music, you'd very quickly see that even the most basic Louis Armstrong tunes use changes that are developed well beyond the standards for today's popular music. Plus, the songs are really catchy. If you try and listen to a Coltrane song (even his earlier stuff) right off the bat, you're likely not going to like what you hear, and it might turn you off of jazz. Louis Armstrong, however, can appeal to anyone. You could get some of his Hot Fives and Sevens recordings, but I'd recommend finding something where he sings more, because he's got a great voice. Try looking up his recordings of the following:

Hello Dolly
Cabaret
On the Sunny Side of the Street - probably the best song he's ever recorded
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1qKZgKJcTZ8&feature=related

Mack the Knife
Someday (you'll be sorry)
Ain't Misbehavin'


you'll find that most of those songs use dominant substitutions for minor chords, as well as some key changes and the like. They're still mostly playable with just a major scale, but even these simple tunes would ideally require stepping outside of the single-scale approach.

Another great artist to look into is Duke Ellington. He's written some great tunes that maintain a great balance of jazziness and catchiness. Some good songs to try and learn might be:

In a Sentimental Mood
I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart
Don't Get Around Much Anymore
Solitude
It Don't Mean A Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)

Ella Fitzgerald has lent her voice beautifully to Duke Ellington's work, and is probably the best person to listen to if you want to really appreciate his music. Here's a couple of links to some great recordings:

Solitude
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cgy9v9wee3Q

Sophisticated Lady
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r0l5VwyJNjo

I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zdiy0U3pmNk


All of these songs will give you a run for your money if you've never played jazz before, and will be especially hard if you're a bit shaky on the theory front. Plus, they're beautiful to listen to. As far as giving you some ideas for post-rock experimentation, they probably won't be very helpful. However, they'll give you a good start on the long road to learning jazz music, and will hopefully turn you on to the genre as a whole.

To finish, I'll give you a list of some more prominent artists that you might want to look into hearing, starting with some basic stuff and progressing down to more complicated artists.

Count Basie - good swing, hot orchestra
Billie Holiday - great singing, really depressing
Django Reinhardt - fast ragtime guitar that'll make you feel like a failure at your instrument (and did i mention that his left hand was badly mangled?)
Dizzy Gillespie - bebop trumpeter, blended swing and african/latin/cuban influences.
Charlie Parker - bebop saxophonist, worked with Dizzy, really fast sax lines over complex changes
Thelonious Monk - bebop pianist with a unique style that's unmistakable
Bud Powell - another bebop pianist, very influential
Dave Brubeck - jazz pianist who made some really catchy songs with odd time sigs
Charles Mingus - jazz bassist with prolific composition and arrangement skills
Miles Davis - jazz trumpeter, spearheaded modal jazz
Bill Evans - jazz pianist, worked with miles, made some great modal jazz and cool jazz
John Coltrane - jazz saxophonist, pushed the boundaries of jazz music in every emerging subgenre
Herbie Hancock - jazz pianist who popularized the use of suspended chords
ornette coleman - inventor of free jazz

All of these artists made various styles of music throughout their careers, but I figured I'd give you some of their main traits incase something about them might peak your interest. I suggest working your way down the list to kind of get an idea of how jazz has evolved in complexity.
Last edited by Glen'sHeroicAct at Apr 1, 2011,
#9
I was just wondering if anybody new any good jazz chord progressions or songs that would be good for me to learn on guitar? I'm an intermediate level guitarist (I can sweep, do legato, tapping and all that) and I'm in a post-rock band, but we're trying to experiment a bit and my theory's pretty poor so I thought learning some jazz would help me a fair bit - particularly after watching Tosin Abasi, haha.

Also, we're moving onto 7-strings pretty soon and I was wondering if anybody new any full barre chords for a 7-string that I could work around?


Well, the main thing is, do you understand why barre shapes work on 6 strings? Otherwise you're not going to learn much from Jazz or from 7 string barre shapes.