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How To Develop Virtuoso Single Line Technique For Jazz Guitarbased on The Virtuoso Pianist Exercises of C.F. Hanon by Adam Rafferty

How To Develop Virtuoso Single Line Technique For Jazz Guitarbased on The Virtuoso Pianist Exercises of C.F. Hanon by Adam Rafferty

c 2000 Adam Rafferty All Rights Reserved. Any attempt to reproduce this document in part or in full without permission is a violation of law and will be prosecuted.

Table of ContentsIntro: Congratulations! Getting the Most Out of this Book Chapter 1: 7 Positions of the Scales Chapter 2: Hanon Exercise 1 Chapter 3: Tremolo Picking and Speed Chapter 4: Hanon Exercise 2 Chapter 5: The Moody Scales Chapter 6: Diatonic Triads Arpeggios in 7 Positions Chapter 7: Diatonic 7th Chord Arpeggios in 7 Positions Where To Go Next 5 7 9 13 23 25 33 47 61 77


Congratulations On Your Decision To Supercharge Your Guitar Playing!You Can Do It!It brings me a great amount of satisfaction to help guitar players discover new ways of thinking and improving their skills. Is your practicing haphazard? Mine used to be. I'd take the guitar out and have no idea what I would be practicing in the moments to follow. If I was lucky, my chops would be soaring. Since I had no daily routine though, each day was a moving target. If I played well one day, the following day I would not be able to figure out how I got to a high level on the previous day.

I want to teach you how to have a highly organized, productive practice routine.I can remember thinking to myself in college that there must be a clear-cut method for improving technique on an instrument, no matter what the instrument. After all, there are so many pianists, violinists, saxophonists, etc who are virtuosos - they can't all be geniuses. There must have been an approach that they took, or that they were taught in order to get to where they are. Rather than inventing a new approach every day, I felt the need for a system so that I could put my full energy into actually practicing instead of figuring out what to practice. Guitar is different from "legit " classical instruments in the following way: So many of us are attracted by blues and rock and such an emphasis is put on "emotion" or "feel" in guitar playing. Not only that, but teachers in music schools have to keep people coming back year after year, which means it has to be "quick and easy" to play an instrument. The guitar has little tradition as a serious (classical & jazz) instrument that requires "discipline". Also many accomplished blues and rock players shudder at when they have to face a weakness in their own playing and react that they just "play by feel". The definition of "discipline" according to Webster 's is as follows: 1. A field of study 2. Training that molds, corrects, or perfects 3. Control gained by obedience or training. I once heard another definition of discipline as the putting off of immediate pleasure for the pursuit of a greater good or goal. So, it is discipline that you need in your practice routine. Not to take the fun out by any means, but so that you have structure and are not wasting energy searching for something that many others have already figured out. The irony is that if you have a little discipline, you will have much more fun in real life playing situations. I asked my main teacher, pianist Mike Longo, how he got his chops together. (Mike is a world class jazz pianist who played with Dizzy Gillespie's group from 1964 -1971) He told me that when he studied with the great pianist Oscar Peterson, Oscar had him practicing Hanon and Czerny exercises until "each note sparkled".


C.F. Hanon wrote a famous book of exercises called The Virtuoso Pianist and the book you are holding in your hands shows you how to put his concept of gaining virtuoso technique on guitar.Most of the classical guitar methods are geared towards solo guitar playing - mainly melody with bass and chord accompaniment, and do not focus on single line fluidity. Classical guitar is a highly developed art in itself, but it is completely different from jazz guitar. I knew I wanted something that would help me develop my jazz soloing in terms of facility with single line playing so that I could play fast, clean, interesting solos on tunes like "Giant Steps" or "Rhythm Changes". I picked up a book of Hanon Exercises at the music store and tried to get that concept of practicing onto the guitar. I worked on Excersise #1 from the Hanon book in the "7 Positions" on the neck of the guitar over the course of about a week. I put in about 30 minutes on this every day at the beginning of my practice routine, and then practiced my other material - tunes, new harmonic material, etc. It took me a few weeks to actually be able to play all the exercises in this book by ear. When I went to my next gig, one of my friends in the audience and my bass player both asked me on the first set break, "What the hell have you been practicing? Man your chops went way up!" Since then I have always included this type of practicing in my routine. Much of my practice routine is based on improvising and writing tunes, but I always warm up with Hanon Exercise 1 in 7 Positions, Hanon Exercise 2 in 7 Positions, and all the Moody Scales every day for technique. What are you waiting for?! The exercises in this book are designed to reveal and correct technical weaknesses that you may have. Your tone will improve, your touch will feel balanced and even, and your knowledge of the fingerboard and all-around musicianship will go up. You should be able to learn the exercises in all 7 Positions rather quickly because many ideas and fingerings repeat themselves. Your fingers will start to know where to go as you learn the exercises in the 7 Positions. What I really like is that they dont feel boring and repetetive even though they are very technical in nature. After you have mastered the exercises, you should still continue to do them as your practice routine warmup. As I said, I do Hanon 1 & 2 in 7 Positions and all the Moody Scales plus more every day as my "technical portion" when I first take the guitar out of the case. Once you know the exercises by heart this entire book can be played in an hour. You might even find that it's easier to do the exercises by ear rather than sightreading. That's fine. I did not write these exercises out in order to learn them - I just did it by ear and stuck to my fingering system.

If you commit to a practing routine that is focused, your playing will improve by leaps and bounds.


Important Steps To Getting the Most Out of this Book1. Go easy on yourself. You are not beating the instrument down. Find the balance between playing too hard and playing too soft. Know that by doing this routine regularly that you are learning how to go with the instrument. Dizzy Gillespie once said "Everything I play is easy. If it feels stiff I discard it". Let that be your guide. 2. If you go slowly and accurately, then you will surely develop speed. If you try and do these exercises too fast you will hurt yourself. I never ever practice with a metronome, but I play these as sixteenth notes around quarter = 80 mm. (They are written in this book as eighth notes, so listen to 80 on a metronome, and play 4 eighth notes for each tick) Like an athlete, don't even think about playing fast until you are warmed up. Stay loose, breath deep and relax. I never practice with a metronome, and I dont recommend it. I give you this tempo information so you dont play too fast. Stay loose and relaxed, speed will come as a by-product. Your body is smarter than you think - if you are feeling pain or tension, listen to it! If you try to achieve too much (mind over body) your body will say "No way Buddy!" and you will pay. That is how people end up with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome - ignoring pain or tension. You could put your playing out of commission for months due to injuring yourself! I assume no responsibility if this happens to you! Look at this as the start of a new routine for the rest of your life. 30-60 minutes a day in a relaxed, non-achieving manner will add up quickly over the upcoming weeks, months and years. It's a small price to pay for gaining great technique on your guitar. 3. Give your full concentration. This is not just physical - it's mental, musical and spiritual. You can't watch TV or talk to someone while you do this stuff. 4. Don't be overwhelmed. It's not about doing every exercise right away. It's about putting in the time everyday with the right mental attitude. Even if you have only learned the first exercise in the book, play it four times consecutively, and with a focused mind. Then you will benefit. You will not get anywhere if you start and stop, and meander through the book, not committing yourself to mastering even one exercise. There is no end to the patterns & scales that you or I could think up. The most important thing is to get your touch on your axe happening every day. You will benefit as much from the first exercise as from the last. 5. Imagine the fatness of tone in a walking bassline on a blues, and play exercises with that type of "big" tone. Also play the exercises a little staccatto, so there is a tiny space between each note. Have you ever picked a string and pushed down with a left hand finger at the exact same time? It's different from holding the note down first and then plucking. Do the exercises the first way - so that both hands "play" the note at the same time. Then there should

8 be a little release of the left hand pressure. This way you are actually practicing going into and out of the note with each note that you play. You don't have to think about it in such detail as you are doing it, though, just put a little silence after each note - that will make you do what I'm talking about. 6. Restrict yourself to alternate picking, startin


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