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Jazz lick in C

For this lick, I decided to play it with all 8th notes, except for the triplet near the end. Since it’s a jazz lick, try
to “swing” the rhythm. What I mean is that when you play a pair of 8th notes, you would play the 1st one slightly longer,
and the second one slightly shorter.So,if you play 8-8th notes in a row, the sequence would be long-short-long-short-long-short-long-short.

First, I start the lick with a pick up note (the E) that anticipates the downbeat of the first full measure by an eighth
note. In the first measure, I start with an F triad (F-A-C) that is also the upper part of a Dm7 arpeggio (D-F-A-C).
Then, I move that shape up a whole step to make it an Em7 arpeggio, which is also in the key of C. Try sliding
from the C on the 3rd string to the D, I think you’ll like it!

On the G7b(9), I play a full octave diminished arpeggio starting on an F. This a very common technique in jazz, since the
notes of the diminished arpeggio outline a G7b9 chord. I’ll lay it out here:

        1 3 5 b7 b9

G7b9 G B D F Ab

        1 b3 b5 bb7

F dim F Ab Cb(B) Ebb(D)

****note: this arpeggio can also be named Ab dim, Cb(B) dim, or D dim. This is because a diminished chord is made up of notes that are all 1-1/2 steps (minor 3rd) apart. Another factor is that you can evenly divide an octave into 4 1-1/2 step chunks. Use the formula I listed above and work it out. If you have any questions, let me know.

The next thing that happens is that I use an “encircling” pattern that ends on the E natural, the 3rd of the C chord.
This is also a very common move in jazz, playing 4-2-b3-natural 3 on a major chord.

The lick ends with a short line over the C chord. Some points of interest are that I used intervals of a 4th and 5th to
give the line a little more space, and that I ended on a #11.

Enjoy, and as always, if you have any questions – drop me a line.


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