Joe Pass Fingerstyle Arpeggios

by | Chord Melody, Fingerstyle

I’ll never forget that day in 1974 when I walked into a record store in San Francisco. While sorting through the jazz section, I came across a newly released album titled Virtuoso by Joe Pass, a guitarist I had read about but had not yet listened to.

I was intrigued when I read that on this album, Pass was improvising chord melody entirely solo…that is, unaccompanied. So out of curiosity, I bought the album. And to make a long story short…I was totally blown away! I remember saying to myself …THAT is what I would like to be able to do someday!

Almost half a century has passed since I listened to Joe Pass for the first time. And after years of analyzing his solo guitar style, I finally feel that I can begin to apply many of the chord melody concepts he first introduced us to in that now classic album I described. So, in this lesson I want to focus on showing you his use of rubato arpeggios!


The “Joe Pass Fingerstyle Arpeggios” lesson files, can be downloaded for $10.00. The download includes the following files:  PDF with both regular notation and TAB featuring 17 examples and applications over 3 standards, MP3 of everything , a Band in a Box file, as well as a Midi file of the standards so you can practice using the free downloadable notation app: “Muse Score”.

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  1. Greg Brown

    Many years ago I worked through some Joe Pass video tutorials (Solo Jazz Guitar & The Blue Side of Jazz) but nowhere were these rubato fingerstyle concepts and applications explained as eloquently. Well done Richie and thanks for sharing!

  2. Duncan Herring

    Joe Pass was certainly an incredible jazz guitarist. I especially liked the way that he could accompany a singer all by himself by using his finger style accomplishment. You have obviously spent some time getting his stuff under your hands. Thank you.

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