Blues to Jazz

This is an introductory course to Jazz – its techniques, terminology, know-how and songs. We kick off with a basic Blues 12 bar and then develop the chords, rhythm, strumming and, if time, approaches to soloing. Along the way you’ll also learn some beautiful jazz standards.

Suitable for players who are new to the genre as well as ‘jazz cats’.


What will we be covering?

The Blues is the basis of most Western music; its echoes are everywhere and so it’s a great place to start exploring Jazz.

We’ll start off by reviewing a basic 12 Bar blues (its form, use of dominant chords, shuffle feel, etc.) and then slowly develop it into a jazzier version while learning jazz terminology, exploring richer chords and progressions, expanding into swing and other rhythms, etc. If time allows, approaches to soloing will be reviewed.

Some jazz standards will also be covered to add to your repertoire.

Remember – you can adapt and reuse everything in jazz to other songs in different genres.

Chords: open/barre/partial, dominant, extensions, inversions, substitutions, altered and associated progressions.

Scales: Blues/pentatonic, Dorian and Mixolydian.

Rhythm: Timing in general, straight versus shuffle/swing feel, some cool grooves.

Artists and Repertoire: The number of artists and tunes relevant to this course is vast – we’ll select the songs on the day (e.g. Autumn Leaves, Summertime, The Girl from Ipanema, etc.)


Note You’ll be learning and playing as part of a group of diverse players; our tutor might therefore decide to tweak things to fit the group’s overall playing level and combined aspirations.


Who’s this course suitable for?

Acoustic/electric low-intermediate-and-above guitar players who are:

  • either new to the genre and want to find out what it’s all about, or
  • have already dipped their musical toes into the jazz idiom! Great revision and lots to challange and expand on what you might already know.

If you can play most open chords, have started to tackle basic barre chords and can change between them reasonably easily whilst strumming (ideally with a plectrum) then you should be fine. A good guideline is ‘can you attempt a Blues in Bb’?


What’s included in the price?

The fee covers:

  • tuition and materials
  •  lunch and morning/afternoon refreshment breaks

Accommodation, dinners, etc. are available at the venue. Contact them directly. Click on the venue is the purple sidebar for help. Or drop me an email.



  • Course sheets will be handed out over the weekend.
  • Revision and practice materials will be made available to you after the course e.g. audio/video recordings, any supplementary PDFs and photos of flip charts.


And finally

Our courses are teaching/playing guitar-fests but they’re paced to suit the group so they’re as much about having fun and enjoying a sociable time with fellow hobby players.

Playing together as a group is the best, and most enjoyable, way of learning and experiencing music. The courses have limited numbers to ensure the correct tutor-to-group ratio – book early to avoid disappointment.

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