This book from Isaac Negrene is out of the ordinary. For guitarists, there is an abundance of online lessons available, often for free. So, the question is when should someone spend their hard earned money on a book?
Well, this is one of those times.
There’s a lot of lick books out there (after all, I write these kinds of books too) and many are generic, containing staple licks that have been repeated again and again over the years. I’m already bored of seeing yet another cliched bebop lick repeated verbatim in a book. If I wanted a bebop treasure trove, I would go straight to the classic recordings in the 1940s, check out the David Baker books, study some of the fine videos that Sheryl Bailey, Barry Greene and Bruce Forman has put out.
However, if I want to learn modern jazz lines – this is harder to find. There are some great players sharing their lines on Instagram but fewer of them who have actually released books explaining and documenting these kinds of melodies.
In Isaac’s new book, he shares out of the box, across the fretboard lines that are VERY DIFFICULT to play but extremely rewarding. These lines use large intervals, legato playing and unconventional fingerings to get more modern sounds. You know, the kind of stuff you hear people like Lage Lund, Mike Moreno, Jonathan Kreisberg, Ben Monder play – that kind of stuff. Cool, difficult, modern and interesting stuff.
I particularly love how he gave nick names to each of the 20 examples. ‘Monster Line Connection’, ‘Spread Fingers’ and ‘Confusion’ should give you an idea of what’s in store. Also, the fragments section at the beginning of the book is helpful for those who want to work in small bite size ideas before trying out the difficult longer full examples.
If you’re a music college student, this is your food. If you’re a contemporary guitarist looking to get new ideas into your playing, this is the real stuff. Like I said, these lines are hard – but man, they sound so good (when you can play them). I’m particularly excited that Isaac has foreshadowed in the introduction of the book that this is the first of 4 volumes that he’s planning to release. There’s more to come!
In conclusion, if you like modern jazz sounds – this is a great book to get.
Pros: Lots of challenging lines, clearly notated with fingering and pick directions. Audio and video demonstrations useful to hear the lines in context.
TLDR: If you want great sounding challenging modern jazz lines to play on guitar, this is a great book to get.
Where to Buy:
Get your copy of the book direct from Isaac here:
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