Jazz Blues Solo


Hey guys, with this week’s backing track you can play pretty simple blues ideas and the chords will make what you play sound a little more sophisticated. However, the changes are there if you want to make them, and there are one or two places where it really helps to have a few set licks under your paws.

Bars 1-3

Here the chords swap between C9, F9 and back to C9. Your first choice over a dominant chord would generally be the Mixolydian scale. To play over the first three bars of this tune, it’s important to be able to switch comfortably between the C Mixolydian and F Mixolydian. You may notice that there’s only one note different between the two scales, so this is obviously a good one to emphasise! The E over the C9 is a major third (very strong chord tone), take that down a semitone to Eb at the right moment and it becomes the flat 7 of the F9 chord (again a great chord tone). Landing on chord tones at the right moment is the key to sounding like you know what you’re doing!

Bar 4

Over the altered chord here your top two choices are the C Super Locrian Scale or the C 1/2 Whole Scale.

Bar 6 and Bar 18

The Diminished 7 chord here is another fun place to try some new notes. First time round it as ignored because the piece was building some melodic themes but the second time (Bar 18) a diminished seven arpeggio was played. Again, the key here is to land on a chord tone (in this case a G) over the C9 chord. Any tension you build in a bar needs to be resolved to the listeners’ satisfaction!

Bars 7-10

A standard I VI II V progression.

Bars 11-12

The same chords as bars 7-10, but twice as quick – in other words, half a bar on each chord instead of a whole bar. Generally the last two bars is where all the problems start as you are swapping between four completely different scales very quickly! Generally, jazz types will have loads of I VI II V licks at their disposal, as the changes go by so quick that it’s difficult navigate without a pretty good idea of where you’re going. There’s a multitude of scale choices for this chord sequence too:

  • A Phrygian Dominant over the A7#9.
  • D Dorian over the Dm7.
  • G 1/2 Whole over the G7#9.
  • C Mixolydian over the C9.

Phew!

As always, below the YouTube video you’ll find the backing track to play along with, and below that, the tablature. Aren’t I nice?!

Feel free to ask questions or just share your thoughts in the comments!

Watch the video:

Play along with the backing track:

Read the tab:

Jazz Blues Solo

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