Chords


Vertical Polytonality

Here's something I picked up from Yusef Lateef's Repository: stacking chords where each voice is from a different scale. Interesting results -- check it out.

Some Modal Ideas on Nefertiti

I've been working on the Wayne Shorter tune "Nefertiti" lately, and have a few ideas for scale superimpositions that sound quite interesting. What I'm presenting here isn't somethng finished; consider it ephemera from the woodshed. I find this quite a useful way to practice a tune with tricky harmony and you might, too.

Minor-Major 7 Arpeggios on Dominant Chords

This is a quick note on a John Stowell video, giving a summary of the idea he describes and then extending it a bit. It's pretty much the same general approach I advocate in my Arpeggio and Scale Resources. Commenters on the video express some confusion about the presentation so I thought it might be helpful to boil it down to a summary and then couldn't resist adding my own twist.

Melodic Minor Quartal Boxes

A while ago I posted some general information about harmonizing chords in fourths. In this post I want to follow up on that, focusing on melodic minor modes in fourths as a way to create surprising voicings and give your chords some harmonic motion.

Diatonic Stacks of Seveths

Following up on a previous post grappling with stacks of semitones, here's a quick set of related fingerings. The first two are stacks of sevenths, then we do stacks of ninths, and finally a "bonus" set made by putting a second on top of a ninth.

Unusual Extensions on Major and Minor Seventh Chords

This post collects up some chords I've found by deliberately adding "wrong" (i.e. unexpected) extensions to common seventh chords. The results are often very strange and beautiful, and are sometimes heard in jazz settings such as big band arrangements where you can get away with very crunchy harmonies.

Chord Scales from the Maj Add b13

In my last post I talked about some ideas for using Add 11 chords, and this time I thought it'd be fun to attack another under-appreciated added note: the flat 13.

Exploring Add 11 Chords

Adding the natural 11 to a major triad is considered rather outré in the jazz world; usually a #11 is expected and 11 is considered an "avoid note". On the basis that one player's bum note is another's hip new sound, that makes these chords worth a look.

Harmonizing Scales in Fourths

We hear a lot about quartal voicings these days but apart from the diatonic ones there's very little information about them out there, so here's a bit about how to pull these harmonies out of scales and some ideas about learning and applying the results.

Voicings for Semitone Clusters

I've been experimenting with some 12-tone rows again recently and found I had to keep pausing to find voicings for stacks of semitones. The guitar isn't really designed for playing such things in close voicing, so you have to make some decisions about octave displacement just to make the things playable. I thought it might be useful to have some of these collected together, so here goes.