This is part of the “Essential Licks” series at PickupMusic.
Basically you get 10 different licks, in this case 10 advanced II-V-I licks composed, performed and taught by jazz guitarist Cecil Alexander. Each of the licks has a nickname that describes the concept it uses or the inspiration that the lick draws from.
The 10 licks are:
- Intervallic 5 note cell
- Superimposing scale sounds
- An inside lick
- Charlie Parker-approach
- Minor third substitutions, chromatic approaches and the Bebop scale
- Chromatic approaches and a pivot arpeggio
- An inverted arpeggio
- Tritone substitute
- Dominant Bebop scales
- A Bebop cliché
There is so much to learn from each lick since Cecil packs them with a lot of harmonic information. Even though every lick are just 3 bars long, do not underestimate any of these. It personally took me a few hours to learn these… not because they are difficult to play, but because I wanted to understand the logic behind them and also hear what was happening.
The backing tracks are helpful but I found myself recording my own backing tracks to have more repetition as I learn the licks.
The good thing about this series is that Cecil plays the lick at performance tempo. Then he plays it slower so you can follow what he plays. Cecil also explains what happens in the lick. This is very helpful since there are a lot of outside notes and unusual note cells.
Some of the intervallic ideas remind me of Joe Diorio’s kind of lines, albeit briefly.
I got the most value from the videos as I learned HOW Cecil’s left hand fingerings for each line was. This was really the highlight for me.
All in all, I recommend this lick package highly. If you already play some jazz in general or bebop specifically but want to get more outside sounding lines, this is a great way to get these sounds into your playing.
Pros: Great lines, well performed, explained and transcribed.
TLDR: If you want to get new ideas for your melodic jazz improvisation, this is a great way to learn some new ideas.
This is part of the many available licks package, courses and masterclasses available at the PickupMusic website.
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