Undergraduate jazz guitar majors are required to successfully complete eight semesters of jazz guitar lessons. There is no requirement for classical guitar study.
Graduate students must complete four semesters, the final semester is in preparation for a recital.
Course Prerequisites: Students must have passed the entrance audition and have been accepted as a jazz studies major to enroll in MUAC 1526 (lower division undergraduate) or 5526 (graduate).
MUAC 1526- Four semesters must be taken at this level. The student must earn the grade of A or B to enroll in lessons the following semester.
Lower Division Barrier Exam- Students must pass the Improvisation Continuation Exam in order to be accepted to upper division (3526) lessons.
MUAC 3526- The student must earn the grade of A or B to enroll in lessons the following semester. Four semesters are required at this level.
MUAC 5526- Students who have been accepted as graduate jazz studies majors may enroll for these lessons. As in all classes and lessons, in order to continue the following semester the student must earn a grade of A or B.
Private Study Objectives:
1) To improve individual technique and musicality
2) Continue to learn more jazz repertoire
3) To improve reading skills through the use of etudes in the jazz and classical tradition
The following are recommended texts:
42 Studies or Caprices by R. Kreutzer
J.S. Bach Solo Violin Sonatas and Partitas
Jazz and/or Saxophone Studies
The Jazz Conception by Jim Snidero
14 Blues and Funk Etudes and/or 14 Jazz and Funk Etudes by Bob Mintzer
The Charlie Parker Omnibook
Joe Pass Chord Solos
Jimmy Raney Volume 20 (Jamey Aebersold)
Jimmy Raney Duets Volume 29
Melodic Studies and Compositions for Guitar: A Reading Workout for Serious Musicians (Fred Hamilton)
The Barry Galbraith Series:
Book 1- The Fingerboard Workbook
Book 2-Daily Exercises in the Melodic and Harmonic Minor Modes
Book 3-Guitar Comping
Book 4-J.S. Bach Two Part Inventions for Two Guitars
4) Transcriptions-it is recommended that two major jazz solos be learned each semester to be performed at midterm and at the final jury. It is recommended that students bring in smaller projects of transcribed phrases or heads during the semester. The final transcription must be performed for the teacher on the lesson prior to the jury.
5) To develop and expand repertoire of standards and jazz compositions. Always try to find a good recording of the tunes being studied. A good way to approach learning repertoire is to choose an album or two and learn everything on it, rather than the "fakebook-only" approach.
Criteria for Grading Private Lessons
The student must demonstrate good weekly preparation of materials, a willingness and desire to dig into the music and show self-motivation in order to receive an A or B. If the student receives a C or lower, he/she will be counseled not to enroll for lessons the following semester. Each week's lessons will be given a grade and averaged at the end of the semester and will comprise 70% of the final grade.
At the end of each semester, the student will perform for a panel of guitar faculty and teaching fellows. That will consist of repertoire studied during the semester, which must be memorized and two of those pieces will be chosen by the guitar faculty for solo performance. In addition a transcription will be performed with the recording. The jury will be graded by the applied teachers and the grades averaged for the remaining 30%.
You are scheduled to meet with the applied instructor 13 times during the semester. The first week of classes there are no lessons and the last week is juries, so consequently 12 lessons are graded. It is up to the student to make it to all lessons unless illness or unavoidable conflicts occur. Speak to the instructor in advance if possible so as not to waste his time. If the instructor must miss a lesson a makeup will be scheduled. There will be no makeup lessons for unexcused student absences.
If you receive a C or lower in lessons, you will be asked to sit out for a semester and audition again the following semester.
Jazz Guitar Departmentals
Every Friday 1:30-3:00 there will be performances by guitar students in Kenton Hall, MU282. All students taking guitar lessons are required to perform once each semester. If inadequate preparation causes the instructor to counsel you not to perform, it may affect your semester grade. Attendance is mandatory for all guitarists registered for MUJS 1131 or 1132, guitar ensembles and lessons.