Best Of George Benson – Guitar Signature Licks
Best Of George Benson Guitar Signature Licks PDF + Mp3 CD download. Wolf Marshall has been industriously turning out transcriptions and re-recordings of major jazz guitarists’. “Best of George Benson” is one of his early efforts in this vein, and has since been joined by works on Wes Montgomery, Charlie Christian, Grant Green and Joe Pass. Learn and explore the music of one of the most respected and pioneering jazz guitar players of our time. Listen to music, follow the tabs and play like your favorite musician. The Signature Licks Series features book and CD packs and DVDs specially designed to teach a musician the trademark techniques of popular artists and musical styles. Each package features an in-depth breakdown of the riffs and sounds unique to the band or artist: the sounds which have led the band or artist to be recognizable by their own signature sound. The Signature Licks Series is an excellent resource to learn what makes for a unique sound as well as help you develop your own.
The book is balanced roughly equally between Benson’s early recordings and his later CTI and commercial career. The transcriptions are clearly printed, meticulously detailed, and annotated by Wolf Marshall, who draws upon years of transcription and guitar performance experience to discuss departures from conventional chord changes, unusual passages, and linkages to past and contemporary jazz musicians. The transcriptions typically include the introductions and heads of the tunes as well as Benson’s solos. Marshall’s choices of material scruple to adhere mostly to Benson’s more important work while giving a chronological overview of Benson’s evolution. In this light it’s easy to see why there’s such a focus on “Breezin’”- arguably Benson’s most important album in terms of his own career, and also possibly the single most influential album of the Benson oeuvre – even though most guitar nuts might prefer Benson’s exciting explorations of the early 70s (even those from other leaders’ albums – it’s a shame licensing for transcriptions doesn’t apparently extend to albums by Freddie Hubbard). The inclusion of “C-Smooth” from 22 years after “Breezin’” seems almost an afterthought. One can almost hear Marshall saying “…and now he’s doing this…” but without much evolutionary context, it’s not as appreciable, perhaps. Still, there are limits to what both media and market will accept, and I am very grateful to have access to as much insight as has been granted here.
The recording is beautifully (and very clearly) done by a small group led by Marshall, who does an admirable job of replicating the early frenetic Benson of “…Cookbook” as well as the comparatively mellow Benson of “Breezin’.” The audio has been mixed with the guitar to one side so that the CD may be used as a play-along as well as an audio reference.
All in all, this is really wonderful work, documenting as it does the uniquely American art form of jazz guitar, and helping its legacy inform the future.
- Easy Living by Leo Robin, Ralph Rainger
- Breezin’ by Bobby Womack
- So What by Miles Davis
- The Borgia Stick by George Benson
- The Cooker by George Benson
- Clockwise by George Benson
- C-Smooth by DeChown Jenkins, Jaz Sawyer
- Body Talk by George Benson
- Billie’s Bounce (Bill’s Bounce) by Charlie Parker
- Stormy Weather (Keeps Rainin’ All the Time) by Harold Arlen, Ted Koehler
- Take Five by Paul Desmond
- This Masquerade by Leon Russell
- Affirmation by Jose Feliciano
Format: PDF + CD Mp3 tracks. 74 pages
CD is embedded in the PDF. Recommended software – Adobe Reader.
Click the symbol “Clip” in the Adobe Reader to view attached Mp3 files.