Many guitarists I’ve talked to want to know how to play tumbao on the guitar. Don’t confuse montunos, which are a section of a tune, with tumbao. I created this for someone and decided to add the tres part as well. It’s not that difficult, but does show how the bass tumbao plays as well as the Cuban tres.

It’s based on a progression in G minor.

The tres is playing with substituted notes so that may be of interest to those of you playing jazz.

The guitar part is mimicking the Cuban tres, but also filling in with some chords. Again, using substitutions so you can emphasize those altered tones. It’s time to go beyond triads and sevenths.

Let me know if you have any comments or questions in the comments section. More exercises and mini-lessons are on the way as I organize my way too many overdue projects!


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Cuban Masters Series - Cuban Tres