Category Archives for Jazz Transcriptions

Witchcraft – ii V Turnaround Lick/Transcription

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Transcribing Solos – Karaoke Mode

I was recently doing a Cherokee solo transcription and there was a chordal section that was different from what I had in my real book (a common occurrence).

During that section the guitarist was also doing some outside playing so it was difficult for me to figure out what the chords were. One trick is to listen to the bass player but I couldn’t really hear it too well. I like to put the chords above my transcription for analysis purposes.

So I thought I would see if my transcribing software called Transcribe! has an eq area where I could turn down the higher frequencies. Sure enough under Window->Audio Effects and Controls there was an EQ tab. You can filter out the alto or soprano area but I couldn’t get it to filter what I wanted.

Then I noticed the Mono/Karaoke tab. By turning this on to ‘Active’ the guitar disappeared and I was able to hear the piano and bass really clearly!

Transcribe! Karaoke Mode

Here’s a sample of the track with almost no noticeable guitar.

Give it a try next time you want to figure out the bass or piano comping!

Cherokee Transcription – Jazz Guitar Solo

An excellent solo by the young Rob Luft. Sign up on the right sidebar to get the 7 pages of transcriptions for this solo. Note that I watched the video to match where we was playing the solo exactly on the fretboard. Many passages were slowed down on YouTube to 50% and via Transcribe! down to 20% at times.

Cherokee Transcription - Jazz Guitar Solo

Note the solo starts with a quote of the melody and instead of just playing the Bb in measure 3, Rob starts with Bb and encircles the Ab with a chromatic approach. The he descends before ascending with a diminished arpeggio starting on the 3rd of Bb7 (D).

Then he descends over the Bbmaj7 with a descending Bb triad. The triad has 4 notes as the octave is repeated (Bb). I’ve seen this a lot especially with sax players. The triad is an approach to the C (9th of Bbmaj7). We can see how this same structure is used 2 more times over the following Ebmaj7 and Ab7.

The Rob plays a Db major arpeggio over the Ab7 then a Dm7 arpeggio over the Bbmaj7 (arpeggio from the 3rd of Bbmaj7).

Over the C7 Rob plays a Gm-maj7 arpeggio which is very commoon to get the #11 sound – you play a minor-major 7 arpeggio off the 5th of the chord (G).

As you can see the solo is very understandable when you dissect it.

Jazz Guitar Standards – Easy To Love – Bill Evans Transcription

If you’re having trouble soloing over a certain song progression, it can be helpful to transcribe one of the jazz masters, to hear what they do. In this case I transcribed some of Bill Evans’ solo on Easy to Love. I transposed it to they key of C and adjusted some notes for the range of the guitar. Right away I noticed some fairly obvious ideas – over Dm7 you can play the minor 7 arpeggio built on the 5th (Am7) as well as a major 7 arpeggio built on the 3rd (F). Notice how the Am7 arpeggio leads to the Fmaj7 arpeggio – the E and G surround the approached F. Then the same thing is done over the Gm7. A Dm7 arp is played and then a Bbmajor7 arp (again built off of the 5th and 3rd respectively). Even the Cmaj7 has an Em7 arpeggio following by a Cmaj7 arp starting on B.

If you listen to this solo and look at the transcription you will see a few ideas that are repeated quite often. The arpeggios I mentioned as well as the b9/#9s over the G7, and a descending m7 arpeggio with the added 9th (E) -see below. But the ideas connect nicely and are not abruptly connected, but it’s done very smoothly. So if you want to use this idea try to lead into the phrase with approach notes, such as chromatic or diatonic notes.

Arpeggios superpositions and descending m7 with added 9 (E).

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b9/#9 approach

Here’s the Easy To Love – Bill Evans Transcription.

Jazz Guitar Standards – Impressions – Modal improvisation transcription

I transcribed another solo from Tony Greaves. This modal tune moves between Dm7 and Ebm7. You can analyze the solo and see how each note fits over the chord. Notice triads and pentatonic patterns as well.

Here’s the tab:

Modal Tune Transcription

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Transcription – Tragic Chromatic

I transcribed a nice jazz blues melody by Ralf Buschmeyer my former jazz guitar teacher. You can listen to it here and check the attached transcription Tragic Chromatic

I’m offering live, private one-on-one webcam guitar lessons via Skype, Google Hangout or other technology. These are fun, learn at your own pace lessons – no intimidating guitar teacher here, just a nice guy that can help you learn more efficiently!

Jazz Standards – All the Things You Are

All The Things You Are is a popular jazz standard and was written by Jerome Kern.

Here’s the All the Things You Are lead sheet

Here are some resources (solo and transcription) for soloing over All the Things You Are. If you’re like me and struggle with figuring out what to play over chord changes, start by learning what others have done (duh!) ๐Ÿ™‚




This link of Keith Jarrett exercises takes some of Keith Jarrett’s ideas and shows you how to expand upon them.

Here’s my All the Things You Are chord melody arrangement.

Learn some of the phrases and understand how they work. Then use them in your own solos.

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