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Chromatic Changes

Discussion in 'Music Theory [DB]' started by Sumguy7787, Feb 5, 2006.


  1. Sumguy7787

    Sumguy7787

    Jan 12, 2006
    Hey guys, I'm playing the song Sister Sadie for my school's jazz band. In the song there is a good amount of chromatic changes (Ex: Eb13(#9),Db13(#9),C13, Cb13). There is also instances where there would be the chord Bb7 for 6 beats and then Cb7 for the remaining 2 beats.

    I can walk them, but I want to know any tricks or different techniques that will make them more interesting and give them that extra zing. I remember reading a thread that related to this but can't find it. If anyone can throw me any threads or some advice of their own, it would be much appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. Freddels

    Freddels Musical Anarchist

    Apr 7, 2005
    Sutton, MA
    Many times these chromatic changes occur due to the use of tri-tone substitutions. With a ii-7 V7 (e.g., C-7 F7) there will be a substitution of the tri-tone sub of the V7 which would be B7. So now you have the start of the chromatic run with C-7 B7. Tri-tone substitutions work b/c the 3rd and 7th of both chords are the same notes (( F7 = A Eb (D#); B7 = D# A)). So you could reverse the substitution back so long as the root motion is not required by the arrangement.

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. TomSauter

    TomSauter

    Dec 22, 2004
    Kennesaw, GA
    Find a recording of Ray Brown playing this tune and learn his line. I think he plays it on his record "Something for Lester."
     
  4. Sumguy7787

    Sumguy7787

    Jan 12, 2006
    For the tritone substitutions, are you saying I could play a V - ii over that? (Instead of C7 - Cb7, I can play C7 - Gm7?)
     
  5. Freddels

    Freddels Musical Anarchist

    Apr 7, 2005
    Sutton, MA
    I don't know what's in your chart but instead of /C7 Cb7/ you could play either /C7 F7/ or /C-7 F7/

    You need to look at what else is going on in the chart. What's in the melody, etc.?
     
  6. TomSauter

    TomSauter

    Dec 22, 2004
    Kennesaw, GA
    If you were to use tritone substitutions, then instead of C7|B7|Bb7|A7 you would play C7|F7|Bb7|Eb7. However, on this tune it will probably sound better if you just stick to the chromatic movement. That's just my opinion, of course. C-7|F7 doesn't really sound right--the tune is bluesy and it works better if all the chords are dominant. Once again I think the best thing to do if you are looking for walking ideas is to find some recordings of great players and cop their lines.
     
  7. Freddels

    Freddels Musical Anarchist

    Apr 7, 2005
    Sutton, MA
    Exactly. It all depends on the situation and the tune. Sometimes, the tri-tone subs are added to spice things up a bit. Sometimes, it the root movement that is desired. The tune dictates and the chart in this case.
     
  8. Sumguy7787

    Sumguy7787

    Jan 12, 2006
    Nice, thanks for the advice. If anyone has some other walking techniques feel free to share.