- Gig #1: A wedding ceremony recessional and cocktail hour music.
- Gig #2: Swing dance music for an energetic swing dance society's monthly dance.
- Gig #3: A church service commemorating the 320th anniversary of a large New England Congregational Church.
I wanted to focus on gig #3 and one of the practical music theory applications I relied on to get me through the performance of one of the songs.
As we prepared to perform with the church choir, this piece was on my music stand. As I was playing guitar, I was a bit taken aback by the lack of a guitar part... (Full size version)
The expectation was that I play a guitar accompaniment with just this copy of music to use as a guide.
Here are a couple of the thought processes that informed my playing:
- Knowing this was a simple church hymn, I surmised that the chords would be basic triads or (at most) 7th chords.
- This style also relies more often than not on root-position chords.
- Without a lot of accidentals, I figured the chords were mostly diatonic to the key of G (Than You Circle of 5ths!)
- I quickly scanned the page and started constructing triads or 7th chords out of the stacks of notes.
Bottom line... How do you turn a page of music like the one above into a practical lead sheet?
A practical lead sheet would look something like this:
Let's see how you do with this on the spot musical analysis (Uh Oh, the gig starts in 5 minutes!)