Kick Out the Jams: Two Chords and the Truth

In this lesson we’ll be exploring the idea of the two-chord jam, specifically a Dorian jam, using the chords Am and D. If this jam sounds familiar, it should. Dorian is the sound Santana used in “Evil Ways” and “Oye Como Va.” Even Frank Zappa used it in the aptly titled composition, “Variations on the Carlos Santana Secret Chord Progression.” As you’ll see in Ex. 1, we’re only using two different chords, Am and D, but we’re playing them in a variety of positions, thus expanding our two-chord jam beyond two chord shapes.

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