Jan Jakut recently contacted me about two of his new releases. As a fan of his work, I was curious to find out what he’s been working on.
The first one is ‘The Wind Cries Mary [Chord Kit]”. This work is interesting because of Jan’s take on this material. It combines his academic approach to song analysis along with a throwback to how his first guitar teacher taught him.
He describes is as:
Chord diagrams in the tradition of Ted Greene combined with standard notation and TAB show music theory concepts over the chord changes of “The Wind Cries Mary”, including double-stop ideas in the style of Curtis Mayfield / Jimi Hendrix.
It begins with two pages of Jan’s harmonic analysis of the chords, chord progression and scales.
Then, it goes to lay out logical chord scales over the skeletal triadic forms around the 5th position mostly. This makes this a mix of the intellectual along with the intuitive guitar approach.
He continues with the chord progression of the piece in context along with an example of an arrangement using the raw materials.
I really enjoyed this because it gave me a framework as well as room for creative exploration. It’s not a transcription of Hendrix’s playing but more of Jan’s personal take on the song.
This would be fun for a guitarist looking for something creative to work on that’s not a breakdown of a jazz standard.
That being said, this piece is a Hendrix masterpiece and therefore could very well be a modern American standard worth studying.
Going back to the notated arrangement, it is challenging to play!
So far I’ve mostly taken inspiration from it for my own take on the material. For the hardworking guitarist, this arrangement would be a worthwhile piece for the woodshed!
All in all, I recommend this highly for guitarists who have enjoyed Jan’s previous work.
Pros: A creative way of studying the fretboard within the context of non-jazz contemporary music
TLDR: Recommended for intermediate & advanced guitarists who are looking for something different to practice.
You can purchase this product here: https://janjakut.bandcamp.com/merch/the-wind-cries-mary-chord-kit
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