Chord Melody Part 1
5.0 (7)

In my opinion, chord melodies are one of the most challenging things you can do on the guitar - you have to hold down melody, harmony, groove, and tempo, while making it all sound good at the same time. In this course we will dive into chord melody playing. What are some of the key elements into taking a song and making it sore in a solo guitar setting. We will look at different approaches from right hand technique, to harmonic options, to phrasing, to chord voicings. Chord melody is a bit endless, so in the course there will be clear guidelines of how to start on this magical and challenging journey. We will look at specific arrangements, dissect them, and understand them so you can then make your own. Chord melodies changed the way I play and see my instrument - I am excited to show you what I have learned in my 15 years of studying and obsessing over it. As a note: we will study a mixture of genres. This will not be just jazz - we will also check out pop, soul, and r'n'b. I know sometimes when we hear "chord melody" we go right to Joe Pass- we will be using chord melodies to look at a variety of genres.

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Molly Miller
On TIL since 2021
I am a lover of guitar. I have been playing since I was 7 - I grew up playing with my 4 siblings. I studied at USC, where I received my Doctorate in Guitar Performance. I play constantly- touring with artists such as Jason Mraz and my own trio. I am the Chair of the Guitar Dept. at LACM.
What you'll do
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Phrasing
How to get your melodies to sing!
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Hybrid Picking/ Right Hand Technique
I found this technique super helpful for chord melodies. You have more control over what notes are being played and more options when you can hybrid pick. We will work on some right hand technique through different exercises as well.
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Triadic Chord Meldies
You can do a lot with just a few notes.
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Seventh Chords in Chord Melodies
Using these slightly larger chords can help fill out the sound- let's investigate!
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Arranging For Chord Melody
While this is endless (which I love!), let's look at some key elements of how to arrange a chord melody
Who you are
Strong Intermediate to Advanced Player: Have a strong understanding of the fretboard. I would recommend having taken my String Theory 2 course. You should know: - Some seventh chord voicings - Some triads throughout your instrument - Basic theory knowledge (major scale) - Barre chords and open chords
What to bring
Guitar, zoom, and time to dig in! I would recommend having 1.5+ hours throughout the week to work on the material. I understand life is crazy, but if you can spend three sessions of at least 30 minutes a week diving into the material, you will be so solid in this course!
5.0 (7 reviews)
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Richard Kok
June 2022

Thank you so much Dr. Molly Miller for being so generous with your time. These classes were so fun and I am going to use what I learned in my playing. Have a great tour!

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Brett Callaway
June 2022

Molly's classes continue to be a goldmine of information. She has a wonderful ability to introduce concepts in a digestible way. She always promotes creativity! Couldn't recommend them more!

Zack Capes
June 2022

Molly knows her stuff! We covered everything from technique, good practices for playing chord melodies, and even music theory. Having someone like Molly for a teacher is truly a boon for any guitar player.

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Chris McLatcher
June 2022

Didn't know Molly coming into the course, but a friend highly recommended. Was NOT disappointed! Super knowledgeable, highly relatable, and the useful nuggets that she sprinkles into each lesson are worth the cost of the class alone. You will learn a ton!

Dan MacLean
June 2022

Dr Miller is a really engaging and enthusiastic instructor with a great knowledge of her topic and clear interest in helping her class develop. The materials were excellent and focused on the needs, feedback from, and interest of the class. These all made the learning a fun challenge. The homeworks certainly weren't rote practice and helped me start to develop a genuine understanding for chord melody and I'm confident I'd be able to go on and enjoy making my own arrangements.

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