Jazz Guitar Comping – Rhythm


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Jazz Guitar Comping
Andrew Green
Paperback: 136 pages with Online Audio
E-book with Online Audio
Publisher: Microphonic Press
ISBN: 0-9700576-4-4

Comping Rhythms

From a rhythmic standpoint, comping behind a soloist can be seen as following a continuum of interaction with the soloist and other rhythm section players. At one end, comping involves playing rhythms that are grounded in the Bebop tradition (see below), which is a less obviously interactive. The principal comping hookup in this style is with the drummer; much of the interaction that takes place with the soloist would be harmonic, i.e., adding a sharp 4 to a certain chord if the soloist is heard to do the same.



Playing a voicing on the downbeat of every chord would quickly become predictable, and therefor boring. To create interest, play some of the chords on the eighth note or quarter note before the written chord change (anticipation), or after (delay). Below are some basic comping rhythms featuring anticipation and delay:

Rhythm anticipation/delay

Comping rhythm


All anticipated

Jazz Guitar Comping Overview