Jazz Guitar – Chord Alterations

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 21,294
    Expert guitarist Dan Leonard demonstrates chord alterations on the jazz guitar.

    Dan Leonard

    Guitarist Dan Leonard has been a full time performer and teacher since 1987. He has taught hundreds of students jazz, blues and rock improvisation; from intermediates to working professionals. Over the years he has distilled his approach into the basis for his forthcoming instructional book “Organizing the fretboard for improvisation”. Dan began his career playing in regional rock bands. After studying classical guitar and composition in college he turned his focus to jazz, which is where it has stayed to this day. He is currently guitarist with Blind Pig recording artist Deanna Bogart as well as leader of The Dan Leonard Trio. His first solo recording “Time Alone” was released in 2000 with the follow-up, “The Middle Path” due out in the fall. His many performances include The Vaison Jazz Festival in France, The Monterey Blues Festival and The Clearwater Jazz Festival.

    Dan Leonard: Hi! I'm Dan Leonard and we are going to talk about chord alterations now.

    Go back to the major seventh chord here, and if you know the structure of this chord, which is the root seventh, third, and fifth, you can then make modifications to that to come up with other chords other than the basic chords, for instance, if you needed to play a major seventh flat fifth chord, knowing that the fifth is on the B string you could lower that note by one fret and that would give you that major seventh flat five chord.

    Another example of this would be, if you know a dominant seventh chord, and you need to play dominant seventh with the sharpened fifth, once again the fifth is on the B string, you can raise that by one fret, and that will give you a minor seven sharp five which is sometimes referred to as an augmented chord.

    So, you can use that process with all of the chord forms, that I showed you to come up with common modifications that are often used in jazz progressions.