The Fall Global Blues Harmonica Summit Recordings feature Lee Sankey, Adam Gussow and Ronnie Shellist. These 3 harmonica gurus discuss various approaches to non 12 bar chord structures as you sit back and take it in. Get the streamable recording links and all handouts with this purchase.
Session 1 : Ronnie Shellist : Approaches to improvising over 1 chord progressions
Improvising over a 1 chord groove presents some unique challenges for most players. The repetitive nature of a 1 chord can leave folks scratching their heads for new ways to express themselves while improvising over a single chord over and over. The key strategies that we will focus on in this sessions will include: rhythmic chordal embellishments, experimenting with syncopation, establishing and re-structuring themes in your solo, how and when to implement repetition as a strategy over a 1 chord song and the power of long notes! We will discuss a a few different one chord blues songs that are fairly well known and examine the importance the groove and melody as they influence your musical choices.
Session 2 : Adam Gussow : Improvising over the IV chord:??a three-octave approach to chord tones and color tones
The IV (or subdominant) chord only fills 25% of the space in a 12-bar blues:??bars 5, 6, and 10.??Yet knowing how to imply or “make” that particular chord change so that a listener really?hears?it is an absolutely crucial aspect of blues harmonica improvisation.????Most beginners struggle to find melodies that skillfully evoke the IV chord; most intermediate players have a favorite lick or two, but quickly exhaust their repertoire.??In this session, we’ll move up the harp from bottom to top, identifying chord tones and color tones, and I’ll give you a Top-5 list of go-to moves to make your IV-chord playing come alive.??Mastering this particular element of the harmonica requires a more subtle approach to blues tonality than you may be familiar with.??Get ready to listen closely?and take notes!
Session 3 : Lee Sankey : Improvisation
Improvisation is not only a question of note choice, but also of timing. In other words phrasing. We all know that there are only 12 notes and timing is often overlooked in the pursuit of creative ideas. In my session first I?ll be showing you how subtle timing changes can produce dramatic changes and new phrases from the same set of notes. I will then walkthrough how to create a groove with different bar structures e.g. 2 bar, 4 bar. We will then combine these two ideas to show you how to use timing changes to change and improvise on a groove. This will be particularly helpful to give you something to have fun with on your own i.e. playing with no backing track or other musicians.
- Show how changing the timing of one note in a 3 note cluster produces a completely different phrase
- Create a 2 bar shuffle groove, 4 bar shuffle grove using the root note of each chord
- Add one extra note for improvisational possibilities
- Show the impact of changing the timing of 1 note in a bar