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"Good improvisation communicates harmonic progression melodically. Effective melodies manipulate harmonic content through the use of guide tones and preparatory gravity notes, masterfully woven in systematic tension, release, and transparent harmonic definition."

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September 7, 2014 | Mandolin chord sweetness

When you started playing the mandolin, you learned a lot of folk chords, straight triads and an occasional dominant 7th chord. In a February 2008 archived Mandolin Sessions article, we tabbed out some aural treats for you introducing some extended chords.

Doesn't take much, sometimes just a simple Add9 or 6. Sometimes it's just as simple as opening the voices a little bit. We also don't need to get trapped in the every-string-every-note rut. Two- and three-note chords work amazingly well in many contexts, too.

You don't even have to worry about the music theory behind them, but it helps to be able to move them around the fretboard if you transpose them.

We presented a series on "Lizard Ear" chords in the Mandolin Sessions archives, but the earliest glance was the aforementioned "Sweet" Chords; Fresh chord voicings and their context." Get out your ax and savor some harmonic goodness.

Review article: Mandolin Sessions, Feb 2008

Check out the more than eight years of articles listed in our archive table of contents:


Posted by Ted at September 7, 2014 6:50 PM

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