Ceora – Peter Bernstein Solo Transcription

Hello again.  Below is a transcription of Peter Bernstein’s guitar solo on the Lee Morgan tune “Ceora” as played on Ryan Kisor’s 2003 album The Sidewinder.  I just love Peter Bernstein’s sound – warm, melodic, lyrical – and this solo is no exception.  Things to listen for: Bernstein’s use of the melody throughout his solo.  Also, listen for Bernstein’s use of triads in his improvisation to create Altered Dominant sounds.  The thing I really like about the way Bernstein uses triads is that the harmony remains open.  For example, in measure 12, the D/F7 could imply an Fdim7 sound, an F13(b9) sound, or a DMajor sound; but by just playing the D major triad over the underlying harmony, Bernstein leaves it harmonically open.  And check out measures 12-16.  Bernstein uses this same sound over each of the dominant chords (D/F7, E/G7, C/Eb7), but plays over it a little differently each time.  In the hands of a lesser improviser, this could easily sound like a technical exercise or someone running licks, but by making little changes each time, the result is very interesting.  Also check out the sound Bernstein uses in measure 20 – also a triad over a dominant chord to create an Altered Dominant sound, but this time a triad off the #4/b5 to create a (b9#11) sound.

Given Bernstein’s usage of the melody and his interesting use of triads to create altered dominant sounds, it brings to mind Kenny Barron’s solo on I Should Care, which uses many of the same devices.  If you enjoy this solo, check out Barron’s solo as well.  Bernstein’s solo starts at 2:08.  Enjoy!

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