Jamie Holroyd Guitar

Jamie Holroyd Guitar

Solar Chord Study for Jazz Guitar

Solar Chord Study for Jazz Guitar

One of the most commonly played jazz standards is Solar. Composed by the jazz guitarist Chuck Wayne, Solar is a 16 bar chord progression with both long and short ii-V progressions.

Aside from the first two bars, the entire Solar chord progression uses ii V I’s that modulate down a tone.

The first ii-V-I is a long ii-VI in F. The second is a long ii-V-I in Eb, and the final is a short ii-V in Db.

This solar chord study features an abundance of jazz guitar comping techniques that you can use to develop jazz guitar chordal chops.

Practice each chord movement slowly to begin with. Learn the etude in smaller 2-4 bar fragments, and apply the ideas and techniques you like to other tunes that you are working on.



Comping Techniques Used In Solar Chord Study


Each of the harmonic and rhythmic comping techniques in this Solar chord study is discussed full detail in individual articles on this website. Click on any of the links below to find out more about each of the techniques.




Solar Comping Etude


The entire study uses 3 note voicings on strings 234 of the guitar. The first few bars demonstrate an inner moving voicing technique used by Jim Hall. The chord lick begins with the 9th on the D string and gradually descends to the 7th.

Ascending 2nd Inversion quartal voicings are used in bar 5 to create movement over a single chord. The chords in these two bars are moving up the harmonized F major scale. Shell voicings with extensions added are used again in bars 7 and 8.

As demonstrated in bars 5 and 6, quartal voicings sound particularly effective when moving up a tone or semi-tone. Bars 9, 10 and 11 demonstrate how one quartal shape around to fit different harmonic situations.


solar chord study


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Great comping ideas Jamie !

I just have a question : the quartal chords used on FMaj7 seem to derive from the F Major Scale (with the natural 4th), shouldn't they derive from the Lydian scale in order to avoid the natural 4th ?

Thank you for your clarification !

Jamie Holroyd

Thanks for the comment Guelda and well noticed. Quartal voicings can either have a natural or augmented 4th. Bars 5 and 6 of this study contain natural 4ths, but they could also be augmented 4ths which would make them Lydian. Hope this helps.

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