Practice Track: C major I-vi-II7-V7

This practice track is done in an Indie Rock style. The rhythm section is composed of drums, bass, and rhythm guitar, with a tenor guitar line that is similar to the bass part, but an octave higher, and playing on all the beats.

The progression replaces the diatonic D minor chord which fits with the C major scale, with a dominant seventh chord, the D7. This substitution is a common one in Jazz and swing tunes, and gives the progression a stronger blues flavour than would otherwise be the case.

(1) The simplest approach to soloing is to play in C major throughout, being careful to avoid F over the D7, which would clash with its F#.

(2) A more sophisticated approach  is to play in C major, changing to D mixolydian (G major) for the D7 chord. One can then outline the chromatic decent from F# in the D7 chord, to F in the G7 chord, then E in the C major chord, to effectively emphasise the changing harmony.

(3) Another approach is to play exclusively in the A minor pentatonic scale (C major pentatonic), using bends to reach chord tones. E.g. over the D7 chord bend from E (in the A minor pentatonic scale) up one tone to F# (chord tone in D7); also bend from G up a tone to A (chord tone in D7, and also in A minor pentatonic scale). Likewise over the G7 chord, bend from A (A minor pentatonic) up a tone to B (chord tone in G7), bend from E (A minor pentatonic) up a semitone to F (chord tone in G7). There are four such bends for each of the four tones in each chord, however some of them will finish on chord tones outside the A minor pentatonic, others will  end on chord tones included in the A minor pentatonic.

It turns out that the melody for the children’s nursery rhyme “Have you seen the Muffin Man” can be played over this progression, an example of approach (1). Below are examples of the three approaches outlined above:

Lead approach (1)

Lead approach (2)

Lead approach (3)

Now, try your own:

Practice track with no lead

Have fun!

Rob at the Homestead

My residency at the Homestead Restaurant in Main St Samford continues on Friday nights in June, with performances on Friday 10th and 17th of June. So come along and enjoy a great night of guitar jazz in front of the log fire. My set includes favourites from Col Porter spiced with some Latin and Balkan flavours, and grooves from my Virtual Guitar Orchestra! I play from 6:30 until 10ish! Phone Steve at the restaurant for bookings or more information, on 3289 1485.

G Minor Groove Practice Track


Here is a practice track you can use for practicing bass lines or lead breaks using the G minor pentatonic scale. The rhythm guitar plays two basic rhythms using a Gm7 chord, and then a G minor chord.




Teaching Commences 24th Jan

Teaching will commence for first term 2011 on Monday January 24th. I will be teaching on Wednesday 26th January for Wednesday students who want a lesson, but attendance is at your option, seeing it is the Australia Day public holiday. I hope everyone has had a great holiday break, and is ready for more guitar!


New Web Site On Line!

Welcome to Rob’s Guitar School webpages! Rob’s guitar school teaches in Samford, The Gap and Mount Nebo, in Brisbane’s north west (Queensland, Australia), teaching all popular styles, including pop, rock, folk, blues and jazz. Rob has a police working with children clearance (Blue Card), and teaches all ages from six to 80! My aim is to have you enjoying playing music as quickly as possibly, whatever your goals and whatever style of music you want to play!