Page 1 of 2
#1
I know this seems like a pretty ridiculous thing to say, but I actually do have a point.


I've been in music school for a while, and I know my music theory. I know just how much more complicated it is to solo over one of the more "out" Wayne Shorter or Coltrane pieces than a Stevie Ray Vaughn styled blues shuffle.

But for whatever reason, I seem to be able to play in a jazz style a lot better than blues. I can pretty much open up most of the easier Real Book charts and run 8th notes through them, often on a first read. Players like Charlie Christian and Grant Green I can copy pretty much perfectly, getting that really clean muted sound.

However, if I try to play more in the style of Clapton, Hendrix, or SRV, I tend to sound pretty ****ing awful. My bends are almost never in tune. If I try to add vibrato to a bent note it sounds outright offensive.

Perhaps the reason for this is, since I've spent most of my time shedding Charlie Christian, Joe Pass, and other players who don't tend to use string bending, its just not something thats ever going to feel very natural to me.

I dunno, am I the only jazz player that can't play the blues for shit?
I couldn't think of a thing that I hope tomorrow brings
#2
jazz has harder rhythms to grasp and more complex chords progressions.
you just dont have the touch for bending
practice makes perfect
this signature has my gear in it. nothing more, nothing less

Gear
Ibanez S770PB
Jackson Rhoads
Custom Strat
Agile Al 3100
Rainbow Music Shop Custom Les Paul
Dunlop Crybaby Wah
Bugera 6260 212
Line 6 Spider III
#3
Jazz is more flexible, in that musicians have to adjust more in a freestyle jazz jam. A blues jam, on the other hand, will be the same chord progression until the musicians get sick of it and play a different song. In Jazz, as long as you keep the same center, you can basically do whatever you want. Blues is too rigid for that.

Also, I think you just need to practice your bending. Jazz has a lot of potential for bending, something to consider.

Edit: Also, don't use the term "shredding". It's a bastardized term. Frankly, I wouldn't apply the workings of most good musicians to the term "shredding". This is especially true of guys like Joe Pass.
Last edited by crazysam23_Atax at Jun 10, 2011,
#4
my biggest question is this

"how have you gone to music school, assumingly for application on guitar and yet you haven't learned a decent vibrato or trill?"
#5
Jazz is more complicated from a theoretical perspective. the chord changes and overall tones used by jazz musicians are more in depth than any blues. HOWEVER, the trick with blues, while it may be simpler in construction, is that it requires more feeling. anyone can learn how to shred jazz scales up and down (and alot of *uneducated* people i've talked to have said thats all they hear in jazz), or play a pentatonic with blues fifths added in, but the difference is owning it, making it your own, adding your own soul to the style. (uneducated as in, not a musician, or not appreciative of most jazz)

in that, jazz is just as complicated as blues, and vice versa.
My Gear:
Gibson Faded Flying V
"Dante's Inferno" Iceman
Fender Hot Rod Deluxe 112
etc.




Quote by freedoms_stain
I can't imagine anything worse than shagging to Mark Knopfler.

Maybe shagging Mark Knopfler, but that's about it.
#6
to meow, jazz doesnt really have harder rhythms, its just ALOT more complicated harmony wise.

90% of popular blues is a 1 4 5 progression, using all 7th chords.
jazz harmony is much more complicated, using 9th, 11th, 13th chords and aaaallll kinds of altered 7th chords.
(and to all the theory guys, i DO realize alot of jazz is 2 5 1 progressions, but its still more complicated than the blues.)

i love jazz


EDIT: to TK1, i do not believe the blues requires more "feel". feel is how much feeling YOU put into your music, and how much i put into my music.

there is no genre that has more feel or less feel than others.
obviously some genres require more skill (which is harder to play, katy perry or chick corea?), but neither have more or less feel.

feel is a personal thing
my 6 best friends:
Ibanez Artcore AF75
Schecter C-1 Hellraiser
LTD H-207 7 string
Ibanez Acoustic
Last edited by musicTHEORYnerd at Jun 10, 2011,
#8
Quote by TK1
Jazz is more complicated from a theoretical perspective. the chord changes and overall tones used by jazz musicians are more in depth than any blues. HOWEVER, the trick with blues, while it may be simpler in construction, is that it requires more feeling. anyone can learn how to shred jazz scales up and down (and alot of *uneducated* people i've talked to have said thats all they hear in jazz), or play a pentatonic with blues fifths added in, but the difference is owning it, making it your own, adding your own soul to the style. (uneducated as in, not a musician, or not appreciative of most jazz)

in that, jazz is just as complicated as blues, and vice versa.

You've got to be shitting me.
Quote by dudetheman
So what? I wasted like 5 minutes watching DaddyTwoFoot's avatar.


Metalheads are the worst thing that ever happened to metal.
#9
Practice your vibrato then man. It's very much apart of those players you mentioned so I'd get right on that.
As for blues phrasing, that shit can be quite simple. I would start doing simple stuff, copy certain licks from players then after a while (as you become advanced in blues) when your improvising you can hear if your following "blues playing" or not.
Catch the Dragon
Quote by hriday_hazarika
This thread is as terrible as music, which sucks balls.
#10
Quote by z4twenny
my biggest question is this

"how have you gone to music school, assumingly for application on guitar and yet you haven't learned a decent vibrato or trill?"

Have you ever listened to bebop?

Vibrato is used sparingly, if at all, by bebop guitar players.
I couldn't think of a thing that I hope tomorrow brings
#11
Quote by crazysam23_Atax
Jazz is more flexible, in that musicians have to adjust more in a freestyle jazz jam. A blues jam, on the other hand, will be the same chord progression until the musicians get sick of it and play a different song. In Jazz, as long as you keep the same center, you can basically do whatever you want. Blues is too rigid for that.

Also, I think you just need to practice your bending. Jazz has a lot of potential for bending, something to consider.

Edit: Also, don't use the term "shredding". It's a bastardized term. Frankly, I wouldn't apply the workings of most good musicians to the term "shredding". This is especially true of guys like Joe Pass.

Look closer, the word I used was "shedding", slang for practicing.

I would never describe my playing as "Shredding", thats just self-indulgent.
I couldn't think of a thing that I hope tomorrow brings
#12
Any 8 year-old could play a mediocre blues solo by going up and down on a minor pentatonic scale. This solo will sound not-so-good and not have the same soul and spirit that SRV is so popular for.

HOWEVER, that same 8 year-old would not comprehend or even know how to approach a jazz solo. There is no one scale that can be played for many jazz songs. The passing chords of something like Giant Steps would just boggle his musical mind.

The blues is a fairly simple concept because has such simple chords to leave more space for what can be put into a solo. With the passing chords in a blues song, most of the same notes can be played to sound nice. Jazz chords require certain modes to be played at certain times with certain emphasized notes. Many people tend to analyze jazz solos to understand what the professionals are playing over what chord while this is usually not the case for the blues.

Obviously comparing the chord structure of Giant Steps to a I-IV-V 12 bar blues jam is a little unfair, but the main point is that jazz can take years of studying just to understand it while a simple blues solo could potentially be picked up in a few weeks.
Amon Amarth to Frank Zappa
and everything in between.


The A-Z's of music.
#13
hey dude, I have the same problem :-)
as I play jazz I never do any bending and even if i try that would be pretty hard as my 2 archtops have 13s size strings.I never use vibrato in my jazz solos, I hardly use the pentatonic/blues scale in my jazz improv and when I improvise over the blues I will try to play the blues scale but almost ofter drift to a more bebopish type solo, I also have this problem playing fusion.

so for me, as well, playing SRV style blues is pretty difficult
#14
Quote by DaddyTwoFoot
You've got to be shitting me.


Feeling is a technique that should be practiced more then any other. It also dictates who is good or not. Lol.
#15
To me Jazz definitely feels more "technical" while blues feels "soulful".

Jazz is all about chord voicings, arppegios based on those voicings, and scales.

It's true that sure you can run a minor pentatonic over a I-IV-V and have a blues tone but that's a far cry from playing a good sounding blues solo.

My personal tilt is towards blues, although smooth jazz is what got me back into playing guitar. And blues is no technical slouch either - there's a lot more than just running a minor pentatonic or blues scale over a chord progression. And there's several progressions in blues, not just the 12-bar I-IV-V.

Personal taste I guess, but I do agree that the perception is that Jazz is more complicated and it's deserved given the chord voicing and timing IMO. Blues is more fun/cool again, IMO
#16
jazz was born from the blues...while the guitar seems to be an ideal instrument to express the blues because of its ability to distort notes by bending and other techniques..there are some keyboard players that can melt a blues just as good..

using "jazz theory & harmony" your basic I7 IV7 V7 becomes a full pallet of chord substitutions and cycles and symmetric harmonic moves...often hidding the quality of the target chord but not its function.. knowing jazz subs for the basic chords takes alot of study to use them with authority..but there are many players that go through the changes and add bends trills etc and make their jazz solos "bluesy"..george benson, larry carlton, robbin ford, scott henderson alot of the "steely dan" crew and quite a few others come to mind...

study some of the progressions of charlie parker and how he worked around the blues..many of the progressions he worked with are still being used today with re-harmonized chords and a changes in rhythm..

a joe pass trick to see how well you know the blues--play a solo in eighth notes only..no bends or any alterations..sounds easy dosen't it..<wolfgrin>

play well

wolf
Last edited by wolflen at Jun 10, 2011,
#17
Quote by thegloaming
Have you ever listened to bebop?

Vibrato is used sparingly, if at all, by bebop guitar players.

you seemed to miss the point which is
"how do they not teach guitar fundamentals at the music school you're going to?"
#18
Quote by thegloaming
I know this seems like a pretty ridiculous thing to say, but I actually do have a point.


I've been in music school for a while, and I know my music theory. I know just how much more complicated it is to solo over one of the more "out" Wayne Shorter or Coltrane pieces than a Stevie Ray Vaughn styled blues shuffle.

But for whatever reason, I seem to be able to play in a jazz style a lot better than blues. I can pretty much open up most of the easier Real Book charts and run 8th notes through them, often on a first read. Players like Charlie Christian and Grant Green I can copy pretty much perfectly, getting that really clean muted sound.

However, if I try to play more in the style of Clapton, Hendrix, or SRV, I tend to sound pretty ****ing awful. My bends are almost never in tune. If I try to add vibrato to a bent note it sounds outright offensive.

Perhaps the reason for this is, since I've spent most of my time shedding Charlie Christian, Joe Pass, and other players who don't tend to use string bending, its just not something thats ever going to feel very natural to me.

I dunno, am I the only jazz player that can't play the blues for shit?


No, you're definitely not alone there.

regarding why you're having this problem......You answered your own question. You spent most of your time playing jazz, not blues.

lesson to be learned:
Being good at what elitists describe as the "more difficult", or "more advanced" genre doesn't guarantee that you'll automatically be able to play well in all genres, so it's better not to think in those terms.

If you want to get better at blues, you have to play it more often. Being good at techniques like string bends & vibrato comes with experience. Nobody just picks up the guitar and naturally has those skills. it takes practice.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jun 10, 2011,
#19
If you can cop Grant Green and Charie Christian like you say you must be pretty good. But it just seems like you are a jazz musician, not a blues one, or at least not yet. Bends are easy, with a little practice you can get it. It makes sense that if you play jazz, no bends really in it, you just haven't developed the practice. But more important is to capture the feeling, the soul of a given genre. I assume you like blues or else you wouldn't want to play it. Unlike jazz, it's not technical at all, it's ALL feeling. Maybe you're thinking too much. Just close your eyes and wail.
There is another factor though, which is cultural. I also play jazz, blues and metal, the first and last of those being difficult to play many times. But that level of skill doesn't really help much to grasp the spirit of Flamenco for instance. Sometimes I feel like I just needed to be born in Spain to get it. Same goes for Afro-cuban styles. I'm not saying you have to be latin to do it, but it certainly does help.
#20
I heard Joe Pass take a swipe at some contemporary R&B on a live recording -- he sounded like Joe Pass trying to play R&B -- not like guys ho had been doing it for years.

I had a band that played at Barry Harris' workshop -- we did a reggae-ish groove and he sat in and it sounded incredibly awkward.

Being really proficient at one genre does not automatically qualify you for another.

Also: A lot of what Charlie Christian played was blues -- out of New Orleans and filtered throw swing. Seven Come Eleven is a blues.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NtC2XDbE8Zo <--- blues

This is from a different branch that SRV though --- same changes, but swing instead of shuffle -- chromatic embellishments instead of bends and vibrato. One form is from New Orleans, the other from the Mississippi delta.

Go back and listen to T. Bone Walker -- learn his riffs and you will be a monster.
#21
Quote by ElConky
Feeling is a technique that should be practiced more then any other. It also dictates who is good or not. Lol.



It is very arrogant and ridiculous to say any one genre requires more feeling than any other is what I saw that as. What defines feeling is different throughout the genres.
#22
Quote by ElConky
Feeling is a technique that should be practiced more then any other. It also dictates who is good or not. Lol.


so how would one go about practicing that? do i need to look like i'm having an orgasm every time i perform a unison bend? i didn't know you could hear that over the recording...oh, wait a minute...

get real. first, feeling isn't a technique. second, it doesn't come from the performer (live performances aside, for obvious reasons). it is in the music. if i choose to use a bend, it is not because i'm putting feeling into my music, it's because i want to evoke a particular feeling in the audience. it's less about you and more about them. knowledge of THAT is what dictates who is good or not.

and as far as the "anyone can learn to shred scales up and down" argument goes: anyone can learn to play a pentatonic scale and throw in a bend or two. honestly, it doesn't matter if anyone can do it. but i will say this - it's much easier to play with "feeling" than it is to learn to shred scales up and down; that must say something to those who use that argument.

TS, if you want to get better at playing blues, play blues. don't overcomplicate it -- it's very simple.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#23
TS, if you want to get better at playing blues, play blues. don't over complicate it -- it's very simple.


This applies to anything you struggle with... play it more, you will get better at it. Same as when you first started to learn to play Jazz.

Also TS you mentioned struggling to play 'Fusion' quite a broad term, what sort of artists are we talking about ?
#24
The simple response is that blues songs generally use one key, and the chords tend to be diatonic to that key so improvising over the progression grants a lot of freedom as to note choice and not worrying about giving flow or clashing with your note choice. In comparison jazz songs often have a shifting tonal centre (modulation) and within them utilising non-diatonic (out of key) chords requiring you to have a much greater awareness of the tonal centre and chord progression to avoid clashing notes in the improvising. Often one scale won't have the desired effect.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#25
Quote by AeolianWolf
so how would one go about practicing that? do i need to look like i'm having an orgasm every time i perform a unison bend? i didn't know you could hear that over the recording...oh, wait a minute...

get real. first, feeling isn't a technique. second, it doesn't come from the performer (live performances aside, for obvious reasons). it is in the music. if i choose to use a bend, it is not because i'm putting feeling into my music, it's because i want to evoke a particular feeling in the audience. it's less about you and more about them. knowledge of THAT is what dictates who is good or not.

and as far as the "anyone can learn to shred scales up and down" argument goes: anyone can learn to play a pentatonic scale and throw in a bend or two. honestly, it doesn't matter if anyone can do it. but i will say this - it's much easier to play with "feeling" than it is to learn to shred scales up and down; that must say something to those who use that argument.

TS, if you want to get better at playing blues, play blues. don't overcomplicate it -- it's very simple.

Oh, for f*ck's sake.
I can't believe you didn't pick up that he was being sarcastic.
Quote by SteveHouse
This thread is officially about sucking Sleaze off for a sig.


Quote by tayroar
Hey Sleaze I'll give you a blowjob if you sig me. Maybe even some nudey photos?


Quote by crazy8rgood


Sleaze, that made me lulz in my pants.


Quote by 36mikeyb36
hahaha Sleaze i'd give you my mom for that one.
#26
Quote by KYmonster
What you really need, is a new amp.


SHUT UP.

and TS, you have gotta be kidding me. Blues. I I I I IV IV II V IV I V....

Jazz I VI ii V I ii IV V vii I ii V I + endless other chord progressions.

Jazz is so much harden and encompasses a million different styles. Bossa nova, swing, big band, latin, bebop blah, blah, blah...... Not aa chance that blues is harder.
You want some more seeneyj hate? WELL YOU CAN'T HAVE IT

You're all a bunch of f*cking slaves! - Jim Morrison

UG Awards
1st: Biggest Ego
1st: Most Likely To Become Famous
1st: Most Pretentious User
#27
Blues is hard. Everyone that simplify blues to just being a I IV V progression with a single pentatonic scale on top and some "feeling" - are wrong.
Howlin wolf could play over a single chord change and make it sound interesting - not an easy task.
Apart from the basics there is a lot of more advanced concepts that can be applied to blues.

More on topic. There is no other way than just playing more blues to get better.
Alright people, Move along - there is nothing to see.
"Or so you think..."
#28
Perhaps the reason for this is, since I've spent most of my time shedding Charlie Christian, Joe Pass, and other players who don't tend to use string bending, its just not something thats ever going to feel very natural to me.

I dunno, am I the only jazz player that can't play the blues for shit?


I would doubt it.

A lot of metal guys suck at the blues as well.

Excellent string bends and rock vibrato are a physically challenging, aurally challenging art. Obviously you can get better at it, there's no reason to say you'll "never feel natural" doing it.

I would suggest the main difference will be that a "baseball bat" thumb position is necessary for leverage when bending strings, and that the action comes from the wrist while the fingers act as one large pad, those're major issues that're often overlooked.
#29
jazz came from blues, i'd consider it a good idea to start guitar with country, folk, or blues, and then move on to study jazz or classical from there. of course, this is assuming you have the right foundation in theory first. and people ask "where's pop, rock, prog, punk, and metal?" well these genres aren't that different from what you've already learned if you follow this path, so its easy to play whatever you want then. funk would have to squeeze in there if ur doing jazz i guess.
#30
If you keep your thumb more toward the headstock than your index finger then the bat grip isn't necessary. Just a different way of doing it for him to try - not an attack on your method.
#31
Quote by Sleaze Disease
Oh, for f*ck's sake.
I can't believe you didn't pick up that he was being sarcastic.


i'm sorry i can't imply sarcasm out of a few letters. clearly you're much smarter than i am - forgive my stupidity. (</sarcasm>, just to eliminate any ambiguity)

i can't help it if i've seen many genuine cases where people actually believe that crock of bullpies.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#32
Quote by AeolianWolf
i'm sorry i can't imply sarcasm out of a few letters. clearly you're much smarter than i am - forgive my stupidity. (</sarcasm>, just to eliminate any ambiguity)

Clearly I am smarter than you, because the "lol" should have been a dead giveaway, but it obviously went right over your head.
Quote by SteveHouse
This thread is officially about sucking Sleaze off for a sig.


Quote by tayroar
Hey Sleaze I'll give you a blowjob if you sig me. Maybe even some nudey photos?


Quote by crazy8rgood


Sleaze, that made me lulz in my pants.


Quote by 36mikeyb36
hahaha Sleaze i'd give you my mom for that one.
#33
Soul.
Gibson SG - Rose
Fender Stratocaster Mexican-Lucy
Morgan Monroe 32-20 Acoustic
Epiphone Blues Custom 30
Peavey Delta Blues 15
Luther Drive
Russian Black Big Muff pi
Nano Muff
1982 NYC Big Muff Pi
Dunlop Crybaby
#34
Quote by ShiningEntity


at least SOMEONE gets it.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#35
Quote by progrmr
To me Jazz definitely feels more "technical" while blues feels "soulful".


this just says to me that you listen to bad jazz.
#DTWD
#36
Quote by progrmr
To me Jazz definitely feels more "technical" while blues feels "soulful".

Jazz is all about chord voicings, arppegios based on those voicings, and scales.

It's true that sure you can run a minor pentatonic over a I-IV-V and have a blues tone but that's a far cry from playing a good sounding blues solo.

My personal tilt is towards blues, although smooth jazz is what got me back into playing guitar. And blues is no technical slouch either - there's a lot more than just running a minor pentatonic or blues scale over a chord progression. And there's several progressions in blues, not just the 12-bar I-IV-V.

Personal taste I guess, but I do agree that the perception is that Jazz is more complicated and it's deserved given the chord voicing and timing IMO. Blues is more fun/cool again, IMO

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3A2rXFnjRTg

Aw yeah dude, Johnny Hodges is so technical here, total robot.
Quote by primusfan
this just says to me that you listen to bad jazz.

Or no jazz at all.
Quote by dudetheman
So what? I wasted like 5 minutes watching DaddyTwoFoot's avatar.


Metalheads are the worst thing that ever happened to metal.
#39
Quote by primusfan
this just says to me that you listen to bad jazz.

More likely that he's listening to good jazz but assuming that the notes they're using are just random choices from various scales that anyone could plug and play. A lot of jazz players make it look very easy, which leads to the assumption that as long as you can just figure out which scale to play over which set of chords, you'll have no trouble cruising on any jazz tune. The reality of the situation is that a lot of jazz songs are not going to sound as "soulful" as blues, because our ears aren't used to hearing more complex chord changes. Thus, many of the jazz solos that people think "lack soul" or are just mindless wankery are in fact the most effective melodies that a person can get out of some very esoteric harmonic content. It takes much more "feeling" to get a beautiful solo out of Body and Soul than it does to get a beautiful solo out of a blues progression, because the changes by themselves are apt to make most people feel a bit uncomfortable. Yes, I'd say that jazz is undoubtedly harder than blues, because a person needs to first learn how to play over complex changes and then try and add feeling to their playing. Most people forget to add that second part when it comes to jazz, which is why blues seems like such a more soulful genre.
#40
Quote by ElConky
Feeling is a technique that should be practiced more then any other. It also dictates who is good or not. Lol.


Nope. Feeling comes when you have mastered the guitar. Not before. Making stupid faces whilst playing isn't feeling, sorry.

Jazz is far more complex than blues. Blues is a pentatonic scale. Jazz is a myriad of techniques that require time and effort. Jazz incorporates many different chord progressions and scales; not to mention the strange rhythms and off-beat timings that are frequently used. Blues is like the first thing you learn dude. Also, the problem with bending is that it simply comes with experience.
Page 1 of 2