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“At Last” We Have a Small Chord Exercise

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The lead sheet with the melody has the standard chord progression with a few extensions that fill out the backing chords.  Since this is taken from a book that is more jazz-focused the basic triads have been altered to make it more compatible with that genre.

The small chord shapes used in my exercise once again largely ignore the actual root of the chord.  The focus here is having voicings that have a sort of melodic movement on the top of the chords on their own.  Filling out and adding to the basic harmony is one of the main objectives.  Using shapes that logically move around the fretboard is also a major consideration.

This is an example of how we are also beginning to think of the importance of the top note of each chord.  It is to be emphasized as much as possible.  When we get into the development of chord melodies and on-the-spot harmonization of single note ideas this becomes critical.


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