Advanced Bossa Nova Phrase 137x

The first measure in this phrase is taken from the second measure of basic syncopated bossa nova phrase (13). The second measure is created by splicing two 4-beat patterns, the first one is pattern 7 (all 16 beats pattern), while the second (represented here with 'x') may be any of the patterns with 1, 2, 3 or 4 consecutive beats played and those correspond to our patterns 0, 2, 6 and 7. Pattern 6 is chosen for this lesson so corresponding phrase is named 1376:

It is showed here in Wave by Antonio Carlos Jobim. The version used is loosely transcribed from two recordings made by Jobim, an instrumental version from 1967 released on album Wave and in Jobim's duet with Frank Sinatra recorded in 1969. The phrase appears in the forms 1772, 1776 and 1777 and is used only in song transitions, including opening and closing.


To the best of our knowledge there is no other appearance of this phrase among the popular bossa nova songs. It is included here only to illustrate the construction of rhythmic phrases from individual 4-beat patterns. This practice is not used widely and Jobim's invention in this song provides a perfect example of usage of these advanced phrases as he blends this phrase with similar sounding basic phrases 1332 (second basic) and 1331 (Partido Alto variation) as it can be seen in the video lesson.

Video Lesson: Wave

Jobim usually played this song in D major, while with Sinatra it was recorded a semitone above (E flat). We have chosen yet a semitone above Jobim/Sinatra recording (E) as this makes it possible to have an open E string bass for intro and transition parts and also makes it a bit easier to sing the melody the same way as Sinatra did.

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