Welcome to Lesson 5 of the Jazz Chords Workshop. 

We have completed the four voicing groups on the middle set of four strings in the previous lessons. This week we shall begin learning the voicing groups on the top set of four strings. These chords are the upper voicings of the chords we have already learnt and are played at a higher register. 

We will take the same approach to learning as for the middle group of strings. We shall learn the voicing groups and draw on any and all similarities to organize our learning. 

For this week’s lesson, we introduce the Group A Voicings (Top Set) centred around the 5th and 8th frets.

Click the video below to watch the lesson.

Learning Aids

The chord shapes and TABs for this lesson are provided as follows.

Jazz Chords Workshop Lesson 5 Jazz Group A Voicings (Top Set)

Primary Takeaways

The main takeaways of lesson 5 are as follows:

1. This week’s chord voicing group is the upper structure of the Group A voicing Group.

A part of Group A voicing group, this week’s voicings are centred around the same frets i.e. 5th to 8th albeit on the top set of four strings.  

2. The chords in the major II V I and minor II V I differ by a single note.

Although we are learning a different string set, the major- and minor II-V-I chords again differ by one note. This will help with the learning. It should be reiterated here that this course focuses on developing mastery of chords for the purpose of chord tone soloing in the later courses. As such we group the chord voicings to occupy the same fret space over which one might solo for instance. This will facilitate the visualization of the chord tones especially when it comes to chord tone improvisation. 

3. The E7(b9) chord shape for the top group will not change

Just as the E7(b9) chord in the middle group sets retains its shape regardless of voicing group. the next four lessons will have a common E7(b9) shape as you will soon discover. 

Tips for faster learning

The learning tips and strategies introduced in the previous group of string can still be applied here. (if needed)

        • Break the exercises down to manageable fragments 
        • Practise in the dark
        • Apply the exercise to a backing track 
        • Find ways to self-motivate  
        • Self monitor our learning 

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