Jazz Notes 18: Latin Comping

by Jerry Arcidiacono

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  • Hi GMC'ers! With this lesson I want to give you an introduction to beautiful Latin Music. In the late 40's Jazz players like Dizzie Gillespie and Stan Kenton began to combine the rhythmic style of afro-cuban music with traditional Jazz instruments and improvised solos.

    The main difference with traditional Jazz music is probably the use of a straight rhythm instead of the classic "swing" we hear on many previous Jazz tunes.

    The nylon-string guitar is one of the instruments used often in this style. Usually its role is about comping the singer or the soloist, using the fingerpicking technique with different rhythmic figures. If you don't have a classical or acoustic guitar, try to use your neck pick-up, touching the strings with your picking hand near the fretboard.

    There are a lot of Bossa Nova, Salsa and Cuban rhythm examples. It is difficult to cover all of them in one lesson. So, the main purposes of this lesson is to learn some chord shapes which sound good with this style and learn some rhythmic figures.

    If you like how this lesson sounds and you don't know too much about Latin Jazz, please listen to the following artist's works. This is just a quick list!

    Listening Recommendations:
    * João Gilberto
    * Antonio Carlos Jobim
    * Dizzy Gillespie
    * Stan Getz
    * Tito Puente
    * "The Girl From Ipanema"
    * "Song for My Father"
    * "Blue Bossa"
    * "Desafinado"
    * "So Danco Samba"
    * "A Night In Tunisia"
    * "Wave"
    * "Recorda Me"
    * "St. Thomas"

    If you have any questions:
    * Give feedback (upper-right-corner)
    * My Personal Board
    * General Forum

    Enjoy! Jerry

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