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Building Improvisation: Master Your Fingerboard Part IV – Jazz Improvisation With Andrea Fascetti



Meet Andrea Fascetti –

Hi my friends!

I’m so glad to be here again, and I’m really honored to be on the staff of this great magazine. Thank you again for the positive feedback about these lessons…much appreciated.

Today we’ll continue on from our past lessons, but instead of using Minor 7th chords, we’ll replace them with dominant 7th chords! Ok, I know you’re thinking this may be the same, but you’re wrong. The secret of practicing music is about repetition. If you practiced previous exercises, hopefully you’ve found a method. Obviously we’ll change the type of chord every issue to master all the chords. You want to pay attention to dominant 7th…its importance is noteworthy.

If you’re one who has trouble practicing, I have a little story for you.

Some years ago, I played soccer (in Italy, it is the number one sport). I was a very bad player. I didn’t want to be a professional player, I just played for fun. The problem was that I never enjoyed my soccer time. The biggest problem was simply that I was not familiar with games fundamentals. So I spoke with my coach and he said to me that I had to practice! So I practiced many hours a week, and the next year I had a great deal of fun playing. So the purpose of this little boring story is to enlighten you that music works the same way, whether you’re a professional or not. If you want to have fun with music, learn the fundamentals. It will stay with you your whole life, and you’ll learn how to enjoy music more. And now it’s time for exercises:


Take a C7 two octave arpeggio up and down: C E G Bb C E G Bb G E C Bb G E C (Use PDF from first lesson to see the written notes). Force yourself to play it very slowly and without a metronome. Say the name of notes while practicing. REMEMBER: No groove… Nothing! Only you and the notes! Now start to practice all the notes using only one string (when possible), then two strings, then three strings, and finally four strings! Practice in this way over and over until the fingerboard becomes your best friend. Then you can increase the speed and play it faster! This is a great way to learn the fingerboard and learn many ways to look at arpeggios and scales. Also this is one of the secrets to opening up “the art of improvisation”.


Sing all notes while you play them (do it with all former exercises) If you have a multi-string instrument like myself, (I mostly play a 7-string bass) you can use same method for the additional strings.

I hope you enjoy this method my friends. Hope to hear from you soon

Ciao Andrea

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