Watch the Stompin' online guitar lesson by Jason Loughlin from 30 Country Jazz Licks You MUST Know
Roy Lanham’s picture on the cover of The Fabulous Guitar of Roy Lanham tells you everything you need to know about Roy’s playing: sophistication. Barney Kessel once made a comment that people would see that Roy was a truly great jazz guitarist if he ever took off his cowboy boots. He was probably best known for his work with the legendary cowboy band Sons of the Pioneers. He did make a couple records of his own in 1959 that are top notch country jazz guitar records. His playing is rooted Django Reinhardt and Chet Atkins, but to be honest I always felt Roy sounds like Roy. Maybe a touch of Sheldon Bennett. His beautiful chord melodies and swing lines were unlike his peers. As a session guitarist, he has played with Hank Penny, Merle Travis, Speedy West, Johnny Horton, and The Delmore Brothers.
"Stomping at The Savoy" shows us Roy’s way of playing over a ii-V7-I progression by using descending chords. Over the Bbm he uses a Db triad. This gives us the b3rd, 5th, and b7th. Over the Eb7 he uses the Dbm and Cm triad. These sound as the b7th, b9th, and 11 going down to the 6th, Root, and 3rd. When we get to the I chord, Ab, he’s arpeggiating a Bbm chord. This sounds as the 9th, 11, and 13. Roy ends with a bluesy lick over Ab.