Freddie Green Style: Lessons & Technique
"It's not what we don't know that hurts us; rather, what gets
us into trouble is what we are absolutely certain of that just ain't so."
- Mark Twain
Freddie Green's Rhythm Guitar Style Revisited
In February 2004, DownBeat magazine
published Michael Pettersen's followup to his October 2000 article, providing
further insights based on new transcriptions and a video of Freddie Green.
Distilling Big Band Guitar: The Essence
of Freddie Green
Here is an article written for the October 2000 issue of DownBeat magazine
by site contributor Michael Pettersen.
Notable Quotes Supporting the "One
Note Chord" theory
A rare conversation where Freddie Green
tells a little about his chordal approach
For the experienced player looking for a great distilled lesson, read
this "One Minute Freddie Green"
posting by Michael Pettersen
The Dynamic Chord and Muted Notes
(DCMN) analysis of Freddie Green's Rhythm Guitar Style: What's in a "One-Note"
This superb article by contributor Mark Allen expands upon the "One Note
Chord" theory first put forth by Michael Pettersen in the DownBeat article
Freddie Green: A Musical Analysis of the Guitar in the Count Basie Rhythm Section
A THESIS by Matt G. Buttermann submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Music in Jazz Performance in the College of Arts and Communication, William Paterson University, May 2009.
The Short and Long of Freddie Green: How He Varied The Length Of The
Quarter Note Pulse
Michael Pettersen contributed this transcription which also serves as an
excellent lesson on how Freddie created that famous groove.
Favorite Chord Voicings of Freddie Green
Like all guitarists, Freddie Green had favorite chord forms. As the result
of his numerous transcriptions, Michael Pettersen offers this guide to
Freddie Green's favorites.
"Four Brothers" in the style of Freddie Green
Michael Pettersen offers his version of how Freddie might have played "Four Brothers".
Freddie Green Chord Forms/Basics/How To Use
by Jakub Cervenka
Why Freddie Green Worked Well with Pianists
A concise article by Michael Pettersen that serves as an excellent lesson on this aspect of Freddie Green's style.
A New Hypothesis About Freddie Green's
Albert Romaní offers his theory that the guitar chord forms
commonly used by Freddie Green evolved from tenor banjo chord forms.
Another Approach to Fingering Three-Note
Guitarist Andrew Snee offers alternative chord fingerings to those suggested
in Mark Allen's DCMN article.
Performing with Freddie Green
Bassist Lynn Seaton played with the Count Basie Orchestra alongside Freddie
offers first-hand comments about the guitar technique of Mr. Rhythm.
Freddie Green: He Did Indeed Play One
Guitarist James Chirillo has performed with jazz legends Benny Goodman,
Benny Carter, and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. He offers insightful
comments about the rhythm guitar technique of Freddie Green.
How the 1930's Jazz Environment Shaped Freddie Green's Approach to Rhythm
This article is by Gunther Schuller and is taken from his book, The
Alternate Perspectives from Respected
Professional Guitarists About the "One Note Chord" Theory
These comments were posted with permission from a newsgroup discussion.
Freddie Green: Birth of a Style
Contributor David Ness provided this article which was published in the
November 1999 edition of the IAJE's Jazz Educators Journal.
Basics of Freddie Green Comping
An article by Tim Berens, guitarist for the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra,
shares many useful insights about the big band guitar style.
Die Grundlagen von Freddie Green's
12-bar Blues in the Key of F
Michael Pettersen offers an exercise using chord voicings in the style
of Freddie Green as applied to a typical 12-bar blues.
Right-Hand Man: The Rhythm Secrets of
Count Basie Guitarist Freddie Green
John Lehmann-Haupt wrote this article for the May 1998 issue of Acoustic
Guitar magazine. It has been condensed from the original and covers only
the sections that directly relate to the style of Freddie Green.
Harmonic Techniques to Create Moving
Chord Progressions using Three Note Voicings - Part 1
An exercise and analysis of typical Freddie Green chord voicings based
upon the structure of "I Got Rhythm" by Michael Pettersen.
Harmonic Techniques to Create Moving
Chord Progressions using Three Note Voicings - Part 2
A continuation of the above analysis by Michael Pettersen based upon the
structure of "As Time Goes By".
Harmonic Techniques to Create Moving Chord Progressions using Three
Note Voicings - Part 3
A continuation of the above analysis by Michael Pettersen based upon
the structure of "Sweet Lorraine".
Book Excerpt: How To Play Guitar In A
This is a short summary of Traditional Jazz Rhythm Guitar with reference
to Freddie Green by Tom Bruner.
Book Excerpt: Jim Hall - Exploring Jazz
Nice insights and memories from legendary guitarist Jim Hall regarding
Book Excerpt: How To Simplify Rhythm
Guitar techniques for stabilizing the rhythm section, by Dr. William Fowler
for a 1978 DownBeat magazine article.
Bucky Pizzarelli "Blues for Green"
Guitar Player Magazine Article
Excerpts from an August 1987 interview with Bucky Pizzarelli.
Amplifying an Acoustic Archtop Guitar
in a Big Band
Michael Pettersen offers useful tips and techniques for microphones, amplifiers,
Paul Meyers: Down For Double with
Jon Hendricks and Annie Ross
Excerpts from a May 2002 online interview with guitarist Paul Meyers.
Insightful comments about the playing technique and chord voicings of
A Comparative Study of Rhythm Guitar
This article by Michael Pettersen examines and compares Western Swing,
Allan Reuss, Teddy Wilson, Barry Galbraith, and Freddie Green on a 12-bar
blues chord progression. The article also contains biographical information
on each of the players.
Freddie Green's Positional Leaps
on the Fingerboard: A Hypothesis
Guitarist Andrew Snee offers a hypothesis on a puzzling aspect of Freddie's
"I Got Rhythm" in the style
of Freddie Green
Michael Pettersen offers his version of how Freddie might have played
Recollections of Freddie Green
By rhythm guitarist John Parrott
Bassist Walter Page's
Influence on Freddie Green
Jazz historian Loren Schoenberg provides
insight on Freddie's style of rhythm guitar.
Turk Van Lake's Rhythm Guitar
Articles from Metronome Magazine 1957-58
Rhythm guitarist Turk Van
Lake wrote a series of articles on guitar for Metronome magazine
in the 1950's. Five of these articles were specifically about rhythm guitar
and appeared in July 1957, September 1957, December 1957, February 1958,
and June 1958. Here are all five articles, edited for clarification.
Dispelling Myths about Freddie Green's Technique
Michael Pettersen reminds us not to beleive everything we read.
Rhythym Guitar: Lessons I Have Learned
Guitarist Jerry Krahn shares many insights from his extensive career as a professional musician.
Thoughts on Rhythm Guitar
Guitarist James Chirillo performs regularly with Jazz at Lincoln Center.
Based in the New York City are, James is a superb jazz guitarist and he is
particularly passionate about rhythm guitar.
Blues For Pep
Michael Pettersen composed a tune in honor of Freddie Green on the 95th anniversary of his birth.
The Improvised Counterpoint of Freddie Green by Trevor de Clercq
Trevor de Clercq authored this fine academic paper as part of his MA/PhD studies at Eastman School of Music.
Did Freddie Green always play the guitar chart "as written?"
An analysis of a live performance video in which Freddie's the chart for "Magic Flea."
A Brief Study of Freddie Green's Unique Timbre
By Ro Takayama/edited by Michael Pettersen
Barry Galbraith’s Approach to Rhythm Guitar
By Mike Caruso – student and friend of Barry Galbraith
Sincere thanks to all of the authors for allowing us to
share this information with our visitors.