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Giant Steps is a jazz composition by John Coltrane, first appearing as the first track on the album of the same name (1960). The composition is a milestone in jazz, given the difficulty of improvising its rapid progression of chord changes that progress through three keys (see Coltrane changes) shifted by major thirds, creating an augmented triad..
The song title comes from the relatively giant leaps between the roots of consecutive chords. From a transcription, one can easily infer that many of these are upward leaps of minor thirds, but they can just as easily be inverted as descending major sixths, the latter approach best accentuating the disconcerting nature of the progression..
John Coltrane was a big fan of the ukulele and wrote this song on the ukulele. This is great song to play on the uke. OK - maybe he wasn't a fan and or wrote it on uke but this is a cool song to attempt on the ukulele.
This is not a song typically associated with the ukulele. And, all the reason to play it. It definitely gets a reaction from fellow musicians familiar with the song. Chord wise it is really not that hard to play. It is a bear to solo over - and I'm still working on that one..
Here is my take arranged for low "G" C tuning..
If you run out of frets on a smaller size ukulele for the Eb6/9 in measure 15 then lower it one octave to 0 0 1 1. Even measures 14 and 15 can be played one octave lower and still sound fine.
- WidipediA: John Coltrane
- WidipediA: Coltrane Changes
In jazz harmony, the Coltrane changes (Coltrane Matrix or cycle, also known as chromatic third relations and multi-tonic changes) are a harmonic progression variation using substitute chords over common jazz chord progressions.
- Giant Steps - Melody and Chord Ukulele Arrangement
- Giant Steps on Ukulele
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Song Files for: Giant Steps
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Giant Steps - Melody and Chord Ukulele Arrangement
Cool, challenging song to play.
Giant Steps on Ukulele
A short version of the John Coltrane classic on a low G, C tuned ukulele.
Related Lessons for: Giant Steps
Lessons directly related to Giant Steps.
|Related Lesson Title|
|Core Chords - The Big Six - Building a Solid Chord Foundation|
Core Chords is a series of lessons for building your 4-part chords. These chords commonly called jazz chords, are really just 4-part chords used in a wide range of musical styles.
Related Books for: Giant Steps
Books useful for working through the song: Giant Steps.
|Related Book Title|
A highly organized and efficient approach to the mysterious subject of advanced chords.
Exploring jazz chords using a variety of common chord progressions based on songs from the standard jazz repertoire.
Commonly referred to as jazz chords, this book provides detailed information on voicing 4-part chords. Covers common string families.
Commonly referred to as jazz chords, this book provides detailed information on voicing 4-part chords. Cover string families not in volume 1.
Commonly referred to as jazz chords, this book provides detailed information on voicing 4-part chords. Covers severn string guitar with a low A.