The term JAZZ GUITAR may refer to either a type of guitar or to the variety of guitar playing styles used in the various genres which are commonly termed "jazz ". The jazz-type guitar was born as a result of using electric amplification to increase the volume of conventional acoustic guitars.
Conceived in the early 1930s, the electric guitar became a necessity as jazz musicians sought to amplify their sound to be heard over loud big bands . When guitarists in big bands only had acoustic guitars, all they could do was play chords ; they could not play solos because the acoustic guitar is not a loud instrument. Once guitarists switched from acoustic guitar to semi-acoustic guitar and began using guitar amplifiers , it made the guitar much easier to hear, which enabled guitarists to play guitar solos . Arguably, no other musical instrument had greater influence on how jazz evolved since the beginning of the twentieth century. Although the earliest guitars used in jazz were acoustic and acoustic guitars are still sometimes used in jazz, most jazz guitarists since the 1940s have performed on an electrically amplified guitar or electric guitar .
Traditionally, jazz electric guitarists use an archtop with a relatively broad hollow sound-box, violin-style f-holes , a "floating bridge ", and a magnetic pickup . Solid body guitars, mass-produced since the early 1950s, are also used.
* 1 History
* 1.1 1900-mid-1930s * 1.2 Late 1930s-1960s * 1.3 1970s * 1.4 1980s-2000s
* 2 Types of guitars
* 2.1 Archtop guitars * 2.2 Other guitars
* 3 Musical ingredients
* 4 Playing styles
* 4.1 Big band rhythm * 4.2 Small group comping * 4.3 Chord-melody and unaccompanied soloing * 4.4 "Blowing" or single-note soloing * 4.5 Chord soloing
* 5 See also * 6 References * 7 Further reading * 8 External links
The stringed, chord-playing rhythm can be heard in groups which included military band-style instruments such as brass, saxes, clarinets, and drums, such as early jazz groups. As the acoustic guitar became a more popular instrument in the early 20th century, guitar-makers began building louder guitars which would be useful in a wider range of settings.
The Gibson L5, an acoustic archtop guitar which was first produced in 1923, was an early “jazz”-style guitar which was used by early jazz guitarists such as Eddie Lang . By the 1930s, the guitar began to displace the banjo as the primary chordal rhythm instrument in jazz music, because the guitar could be used to voice chords of greater harmonic complexity, and it had a somewhat more muted tone that blended well with the upright bass , which, by this time, had almost completely replaced the tuba as the dominant bass instrument in jazz music.
During the late 1930s and through the 1940s—the heyday of big band
jazz and swing music —the guitar was an important rhythm section
instrument. Some guitarists, such as
Freddie Green of
It was not until the large-scale emergence of small combo jazz in the
post-WWII period that the guitar took off as a versatile instrument,
which was used both in the rhythm section and as a featured melodic
instrument and solo improviser. In the hands of George Barnes , Kenny
Herb Ellis ,
Barney Kessel ,
Jimmy Raney , and
As jazz-rock fusion emerged in the early 1970s, many players switched to the more rock-oriented solid body guitars . Other jazz guitarists, like Grant Green and Wes Montgomery , turned to applying their skills to pop-oriented styles that fused jazz with soul and R"> A hollow-bodied Epiphone guitar with violin-style "F" holes.
While jazz can be played on any type of guitar, from an acoustic
instrument to a solid-bodied electric guitar such as a Fender
Stratocaster, the full-depth archtop guitar has become known as the
prototypical "jazz guitar." Archtop guitars are steel-string acoustic
guitars with a big soundbox, arched top, violin-style f-holes , a
"floating bridge " and magnetic or piezoelectric pickups . Early
makers of jazz guitars included Gibson ,
Epiphone , D'Angelico and
Stromberg. The electric guitar is plugged into a guitar amplifier to
make it sound loud enough for performance.
The earliest guitars used in jazz were acoustic, later superseded by a typical electric configuration of two humbucking pickups . In the 1990s, there was a resurgence of interest among jazz guitarists in acoustic archtop guitars with floating pickups.
The original acoustic archtop guitars were designed to enhance volume: for that reason they were constructed for use with relatively heavy guitar strings . Even after electrification became the norm, jazz guitarists continued to fit strings of 0.012" gauge or heavier for reasons of tone, and also prefer flatwound strings .
The characteristic arched top can be made of a solid piece of wood
that is carved into the arched shape, or a piece of laminated wood
(essentially a type of plywood) that is pressed into shape.
Archtop guitars can be mass-produced, such as the Ibanez Artcore series , or handmade by luthiers such as Robert Benedetto .
Selmer-Maccaferri guitar is strongly associated with Django
Reinhardt and gypsy swing .
* The resonator guitar was used (but not exclusively) by Oscar
* Nylon string guitars are associated with
Latin jazz , for instance
in the work of
Charlie Byrd and
Laurindo Almeida .
* Flat-top steel-string guitars (particularly Ovation guitars ) have
been used in the "acoustic shredding " of John McLaughlin , Larry
Al Di Meola
Another aspect of the jazz guitar style is the use of stylistically
appropriate ornaments, such as grace notes, slides, and muted notes.
Each subgenre or era of jazz has different ornaments that are part of
the style of that subgenre or era.
In the 1970s and 1980s, with jazz-rock fusion guitar playing, jazz
guitarists incorporated rock guitar soloing approaches, such as riff
-based soloing and usage of pentatonic and blues scale patterns. Some
Jimi Hendrix -influenced distortion and wah-wah
effects to get a sustained, heavy tone, or even used rapid-fire guitar
shredding techniques, such as tapping and tremolo bar bending.
Al Di Meola
When jazz guitar players improvise , they use the scales, modes, and
arpeggios associated with the chords in a tune's chord progression.
The approach to improvising has changed since the earliest eras of
jazz guitar. During the Swing era, many soloists improvised "by ear"
by embellishing the melody with ornaments and passing notes. However,
during the bebop era, the rapid tempo and complicated chord
progressions made it increasingly harder to play "by ear." Along with
other improvisers, such as saxes and piano players, bebop-era jazz
guitarists began to improvise over the chord changes using scales
(whole tone scale, chromatic scale, etc.) and arpeggios.
BIG BAND RHYTHM
In jazz big bands , popular during the 1930s and 1940s, the guitarist
is considered an integral part of the rhythm section (guitar, drums
and bass ). They usually played a regular four strums to the bar,
although an amount of harmonic improvisation is possible. Freddie
Green , guitarist in the
SMALL GROUP COMPING
When jazz guitarists play chords underneath a song's melody or
another musician's solo improvisations, it is called "comping ", short
for "accompanying" and for "complementing". The accompanying style in
most jazz styles differs from the way chordal instruments accompany in
many popular styles of music. In many popular styles of music, such as
rock and pop, the rhythm guitarist usually performs the chords in
rhythmic fashion which sets out the beat or groove of a tune. In
contrast, in many modern jazz styles within smaller, the guitarist
plays much more sparsely, intermingling periodic chords and delicate
voicings into pauses in the melody or solo, and using periods of
CHORD-MELODY AND UNACCOMPANIED SOLOING
In this style, the guitarist aims to render an entire song —
harmony, melody and bass — in something like the way a classical
guitarist or pianist can. Chord roots cannot be left to the bassist in
this style. Chords themselves can be used sparsely or more densely,
depending on both the individual player and his or her arrangement of
a particular piece. In the sparse style, a full chord is often played
only at the beginning of a melodic phrase. The denser chordal
textures, in contrast, approach chord soloing (see below). A third
approach is to maintain a steady, busy bass-line, like a New Orleans
pianist. Here, no more than two or three notes are played at a time,
and the full harmony is indicated by arpeggiation. Exponents of this
style often come from a country , folk or ragtime background, such as
"BLOWING" OR SINGLE-NOTE SOLOING
Charlie Christian and
* ^ Peterson (2002 , p. 37): Peterson, Jonathon (Winter 2002).
"Tuning in thirds: A new approach to playing leads to a new kind of
guitar". American Lutherie: The Quarterly Journal of the Guild of
American Luthiers. 8222 South Park Avenue, Tacoma WA 98408: USA.: The
Guild of American Luthiers. 72: 36–43. ISSN 1041-7176 . Archived
from the original on 2011-10-21. Retrieved 9 October 2012.
* ^ Jazzology: The Encyclopedia of
* Jaén, Fernando Alonso (Date unknown). “The Archtop Jazz Guitar”
* Wilson, Gerald (2005). Personal interview with the author. * Yanow, Scott (Date unknown). “Wynton Marsalis.” All-Music Guide.
* Yanow, Scott (Date unknown). “Pat Metheny.” All-Music Guide.
* t * e
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