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Swing Guitar class

November 8, 2022 @ 6:30 pm - 7:15 pm

|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 6:30 pm on Tuesday, repeating until December 13, 2022


If you play folk music, bluegrass, country, or rock, or even some swing already, and are comfortable with the standard “campfire” or “cowboy” chords, you’re ready to play swing. We’ll build on your knowledge and learn the chords and rhythms used in Western Swing, Classic Jazz like the Great American Songbook, and Gypsy Jazz. Very little theory, don’t worry, no scales, solfège, or music notation.

Using common swing tunes as examples we’ll learn the closed-position movable chords (you know, those not-so-intimidating-once-you-know-what-they-mean, 6s, 9s, diminished and augmented), and also look at standard progressions and turn arounds. And how to use chord substitutions to “swing up” a simple song.

Chords are only one aspect; we’ll also see how to play with a “swing touch”, so we’ll talk about tone and feel, including the right-hand technique and rhythm patterns, and, most importantly, how to play with other musicians, in jams or bands. And if you’re interested in soloing, we’ll look at practical tips you can use right away. And if Gypsy Jazz is your thing, we’ll learn La Pompe and 3-note chords.

And by the way, except for the chord diagrams, a lot of this class is applicable to other chordal instruments like the mandolin.

Class prerequisites: knowing how to finger the simple chords or even the basic Swing chords. That’s it! We’ll learn all the chord fingerings using simple diagrams. If you already know how to read a chord chart or grille, great, if not, we’ll learn that too.

The class is every Tuesday at 6:30pm starting November 8 , and runs 6 weeks until December 13.

(and if you’re interested there is also a Bluegrass Jam class same dates, at 8pm)


November 8, 2022
6:30 pm - 7:15 pm
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Olivier Zyngier
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Freight and Salvage
2020 Addison St,
Berkeley, CA United States
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