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String Theory with Jimmy Brown: Santana, Moore and Brecker, Part 2 —The Climactic Conclusion to Last Month’s Tribute Solo

The following content is related to the November 2013 issue of Guitar World. For the full range of interviews, features, tabs and more, pick up the new issue on newsstands now, or in our online store.

As promised last month, here’s the second half of my original 16-bar solo, entitled “Americana,” which was inspired by Carlos Santana’s rock instrumental classic “Europa (Earth’s Cry Heaven’s Smile),” Gary Moore’s “Still Got the Blues (For You)” and jazz saxophonist Michael Brecker’s harmonically sophisticated soloing style.

In case you missed last month’s column, the chord progression over which this solo is played is structurally similar to that used in the old jazz standard “Autumn Leaves,” which is a circular (repeating) eight-chord sequence that moves diatonically (meaning the root motion is scale based) through the cycle of fifths/fourths (either descending fifths or ascending fourths).

It’s written in the guitar-friendly key of C major/A minor, with the melody superimposing harmonic extensions and tensions atop the basic underlying chords.

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Over the past 30 years, Jimmy Brown has built a reputation as one of the world's finest music educators, through his work as a transcriber and Senior Music Editor for Guitar World magazine and Lessons Editor for its sister publication, Guitar Player. In addition to these roles, Jimmy is also a busy working musician, performing regularly in the greater New York City area. Jimmy earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Jazz Studies and Performance and Music Management from William Paterson University in 1989. He is also an experienced private guitar teacher and an accomplished writer.