#1
So the Jazz ensemble I'm in is doing a concert showcasing Monk tunes. So far we're doing Blue Monk, Well, You Needn't, and Round Midnight.

My question pertains to soloing. Are there any tips for soloing over Monk? Should I try to emulate one of the many great musicians that he worked with? Any specific key points I should keep an ear out for?

Any help is appreciated.
#2
play diminished arpeggios over the dominant chords. For example: for C7, play a diminished arpeggio with the notes C#, E, G, Bb. You'll get the b9 sound which is a big part of Monk's sound.
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#3
If you can play the changes, use bluesy phrasing and have a good grasp of jazz rhthym (syncopation and all that), than your pretty much set.

You might want to learn how to use some of the bebop scales and when to use chromatics and that. Bebop uses alot of chromatics.

And just remembering from his playing, I think he uses alot of double stops?
#4
^I don't know if he uses a lot of double stops, but there are a lot of dissonant licks that he'll put out there very often.

I have most of the stuff you said in your first statement down pretty well, so I can churn out a passable solo, but I want to get a little more than passable out of it.

@John Tutino- Great tip, I be sure to use it at rehearsal today.
#5
Another trick for dominant chords is to play a major seventh arpeggio starting a whole step below the root of the dominant chord.


Also, try to transcribe a monk solo or two? Maybe of one of the tunes you're going to play. And listen to the Monk/Coltrane album, just because it's great.
#6
Quote by confusius
Another trick for dominant chords is to play a major seventh arpeggio starting a whole step below the root of the dominant chord.


Also, try to transcribe a monk solo or two? Maybe of one of the tunes you're going to play. And listen to the Monk/Coltrane album, just because it's great.

Which Monk/Coltrane album? The Carnagie Hall one or the studio one?

Both are great.

I'm actually the one who suggested we do a Monk themed concert, as I'm almost as big a Monk fan as a Johnny Lee fan.


As for your tip: So play if it's a Bb7, play a G#maj7 arpeggio over it?
#7
Technically you should be thinking of that as an Abmaj7 I believe but it's the same thing. It's a little tip for playing I picked up from a jazz guitarist and so far I've used it a few times and it works. Basically all you're doing is that you're hitting the tensions. If you think of it in a II V I you could play the min7 arpeggio, then the maj7 arpeggio a tone below and you'd be playing all the 9s 11s and 13s corresponding to the V whilst staying inside the key of the I because the maj7 arpeggio is like the arpeggio of the fourth degree.


I believe that's right, but don't go on me 100%. I just did it in my head so I may have made some mistake. All I know is that it seems to fit and I like the sound.
#8
Could you do the same thing for any chord?

Cause over a G7 if you play Fmaj7 your basically playing the b7, 9th, 11th, and 13th, like you said all the upper extensions.

This may seem a bit ridiculous, but could you play pretty much any chord over a G7, as long as its Diatonic.

i.e Cmaj7 over G7 you get 11th, 13th, 1st, 3rd

D-7 over G7 you get 5th 7th 9th 11th

and so on and so on.

Is that an option, workable option.

Could you do this for any chord, obviously you could think of it as turning the chord your playing into a Polychord, or simply adding the upper extensions.

Any reasons why this works over a Dominant chord, is that the only chord it works on? If so why?
#9
My guess(I'm too tired and lazy to go through all diatonic chords in relation to all other diatonic chords atm) is that it does work.


I should work it out.


Though I'm thinking there may be some problem with avoid notes on other chords. So it's a possibility that since the dominant is more unstable you can play avoid notes and sound good, whilst if you play the 11 over a I chord you're going to sound mediocre if you don't know you're about to hit an avoid note and where you're going to go with it.


I hate being able to say this and then sucking at playing it.
#10
Avoid notes... Completley forgot.

Obviously the avoid note in a Diatonic Major scale is the 4th/11th.

It sound dissonant while held over the I chord.

Is there avoid notes for any other chords?

Different avoid notes, ect.
#11
Any note that's a semitone away from a chord tone should be used with care/avoided. So work it out yourself. Go through all degrees in a major scale. Then look at the 9 the 11 and the 13. The ones that are a semitone away from a chord tone should be treated carefully. To test just get a piano key board and play a Cmajor chords in the left hand and F in the right hand as you well said. Then do this with all other chords.
#12
Thats fair enough.
C F B E

C E G B C (C, F, B)

D F A C (E, B)

E G B D (F, C)

F A C E (E, F, B)

G B D F (C, F)

A C E G (B, F,)

B D F A (C, E)

Looks like the only avoid notes in a Diatonic Major key, are the 1st, 4th, 7th, and 3rd

Right?

Obviously, there not all avoid notes in every chord.
#13
Mmm, not quite. You're thinking as in degrees of the scale. But what you should be thinking is extensions. So say you have a chord. You know it's chord tones(1,3,5,7) are going to sound good but you're not sure about the extensions of that chord(9,11,13) so you check. You have to think in 9 11 and 13. I guess it's valid to think the way you did, but man, remember that for each chord? I'd get bamboozled.

C E G B <-- Extensions: D F A. Which one is a note to avoid or use carefully(as Mark Levine would say)? It's F, because the F is a semitone away from the E. It's the 11.

Your turn.
#15
Kyrl sent me here to clean up the mess, so gogo.

In essence, an avoid note is any note that makes a semitone with the chord. There is no more simplified way of saying it. This is the classical way of thinking and most jazz guitarists disagree, don't care and/or have trained their ears to hear some avoid notes as cool notes.

Let's start with a simple A- chord. Play the A- pentatonic over it. There are no half steps in the scale, you can pretty play every note in the scale whenever whereever and the notes will not sound wrong ever. Let's play A minor over it. In theory, the B (9) and F (b6) sounds harsh over it and you can't really hang on them. Those could be seen as avoid notes. Why is that? Because the B note makes a b9 interval with the C (from B to C) and because the F note creates a b9 interval with the E.

Obviously, some avoid notes are more to be avoided than others. I find, and most people agree, that the B isn't really an avoid note anymore but that is probably because it's used so often and the sound of it gets to me as 'nonavoid'. But, if you listen closely you hear it wants to resolve.
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#16
So, in a nutshell.

An avoid note, is a note that is a semi-tone interval away from a chord tone, or any chord tone that is a semi-tone away from an extension, any two notes in the chord that are a together form a major7/Minor 2nd invterval. These notes will usually sound dissonant, or "wrong" but in some instances the dissonance can add to the character of the chord.

Avoid Notes usually want to resolve up or down to chord tones.

A classic example of where an avoid note can sound "good" is in a 7b9 or 7#9

In the first case the 1 and b9 are a semi-tone apart.

In the second case the #9 and 3rd are a semi-tone apart.

Is what Im talking about correct? Have I got the idea?

Last off, who is Kyrl? Kirbyrock'n'roll?
#17
Oh, Kyrl is confusius.

Yes, your stuff is correct.
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