Jazz Guitar

MUS 195/196/197/397, section 023

Spring 2011

Instructor: Robert Russell

Office: CAB1028

Phone: 962-7440

Office hours: M - TR, 11 AM-noon, by appointment only

Email: russellr@uncw.edu


Students will learn techniques for playing jazz on the guitar, traditional and modern jazz repertoire, appropriate idiomatic improvisational skills.


Corequisites, etc:

Music majors are required to attend a weekly jazz guitar seminar [Tuesdays, 3:30 PM, except for the last week of each month]. There is also a required monthly departmental seminar held on the last Tuesday of each month at 3:30 PM. All music majors must attend this seminar. Non-majors are not required to attend seminars but may find them helpful. For majors, unsatisfactory seminar attendance will reduce your final grade by one half-grade (e.g., A to A-, B- to C, etc.).


As stated in the Department of Music's Student Handbook, applied music students are required to furnish their applied music instructor with proof of eight concert attendances per semester. Unsatisfactory concert attendance will affect your final grade, as does seminar attendance (see above).



Student may be required to purchase exercise books, methods, etc. depending on individual needs.

Guitar in good playable condition; electric guitar preferred.



Electronic guitar tuner highly recommended.

It is recommended that students own the following books (for reference) whenever possible:

The Real Book; The New Real Book; The Charlie Parker Omnibook;

The Advancing Guitarist by Mick Goodrick.



Except in cases of documented emergency, absences will absolutely not be excused unless you have made a timely and prior effort to notify me. Lessons missed will not be excused except under extenuating circumstances (injury, illness, death in family). Attendance will directly affect grade; more than two unexcused absences will lower your final grade by one letter for each absence.


We have much material to cover. You should be tuned up and ready to play at the start of your lesson.



Evaluation will be largely based on instructor's assessment of level and quality of work completed. Student will receive a grade from A to F for each lesson. You may ask to be told your lesson grade average at any time.

Instructor will terminate any lesson in which the student is clearly unprepared. That lesson grade will be a zero. There will be a final jury exam (optional for minors), date to be announced at least two weeks before exam is administered. Jury sign-up sheets are posted on the bulletin board outside CAB 1086; students are to sign up for “Jazz” jury exam times as follows:

 MUS 195 students: 5 minute jury; MUS 196 students: 10 minute jury;

 MUS 197/397 students: 15 minute jury.


Each student will generally be required to memorize at least five tunes each semester from a graded list (see Student Handbook) according to course level. To pass a tune, student must be able to play the melody, comp changes and improvise on changes, all from memory.


 Your raw final grade will be computed as follows:

 Lesson grade average, 75%.

 Jury exam grade (average of all observer grades), 25%.

 Unsatisfactory concert and/or seminar attendance will reduce your final grade. (See Corequisites, etc.)