For question about spontaneous composing in real time, typically during performance.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

54
votes
23answers
3k views

Ways to get out of a scalar rut?

I'm a well versed and experienced guitarist. I have a decent sense for rhythm and melody, but I have a VERY hard time with soloing. I know you've heard it all before I'm one of those guys that got ...
4
votes
2answers
35 views

How does improvisation in Indian ragas differ significantly from jazz melodic improvisation?

I have heard that Ravi Shankar once said that ragas are not jazz. However, Ravi Shankar had a significant influence on some jazz performers. How does improvisation in Indian ragas differ ...
3
votes
0answers
28 views

What are the rules of improvisation in gamelan music?

I see repeated reference to improvisation in Javanese and Balinese gamelan music but I don't see any reference to the actual rules of improvisation in that music. What are the rules of improvisation ...
7
votes
4answers
797 views

How to conduct rehearsals in a small band?

We have small band of four people(vocals+guitar, bass, drums and trumpet). It is our hobby, if it matters. I am trumpeter and the most recent(half a year) member of a band. We rehearse every week and ...
1
vote
5answers
325 views

How to perform trombone solo? (improvisation)

I'm a euphonium player, but for jazz band at school I play trombone. Everyone in jazz band is required to play an improv piece only this is my first year doing trombone, so I'm not so certain. Should ...
1
vote
3answers
104 views

Running out of fretboard

I was wondering, how often does it happen to "run out of fretboard" like Tommy Emmanuel (almost) does in this video around 0:30 ? Do you ever feel limited by the range of the guitar while improvising ...
14
votes
4answers
1k views

How can I produce any melody on my guitar as effortlessly as I do with my voice?

When I improvise on the guitar, I rely too much in theory and muscle memory. However, I can do creative vocal improvisations. I want to be able to let my inner ear command my guitar playing as well. ...
31
votes
9answers
2k views

How to start playing by ear/improvising?

Up till now I've been playing music from the sheet, and eventually I've grown frustrated how after 3 years of playing I can't even play Jingle Bells if I'm asked to without figuring it out from a ...
3
votes
1answer
90 views

Playing Over Changes and Subsitutions

Im a fairly advanced guitarist/musician and love improvising, as most of us do. However, when a progression goes out of the main key, such as borrowing or subsituting, I tend to get lost in my head. ...
2
votes
12answers
3k views

Improving as a solo guitarist without learning scales

I am a drummer of 20+ years. I am a guitarist for only the last 5 or so (more of a guitar owner). I can play many chords, and have composed a number of songs. I learned to play drums without a ...
1
vote
2answers
44 views

Location within form

I am learning jazz standards, and wonder if anyone could offer advice on maintaining awareness of location within the form of the song, especially while improvising. I have been trying to envision ...
0
votes
2answers
79 views

confused about modes and the proper way to use them in my playing

I was wondering if someone could explain to me the correct way to play and use modes. some websites that I use to teach myself about them say that (in relation to C major) the Dorian would simply be: ...
11
votes
7answers
9k views

What is a good solo to learn in the Dorian mode?

I understand that Dorian is a commonly used mode in rock. I am starting to play / improvise in the mode and would like to learn some guitar solos that are good examples of this scale so that I see how ...
7
votes
5answers
159 views

How to give classes on improvisation

I'm giving a 6 times 3 hours workshop on musical improvisation. The participants are 5 to 10 mostly classical musicians, skilled with their instruments, slightly interested in jazz, and all keen on ...
1
vote
2answers
150 views

What is the scale played on this chord progression?

I'm trying to figure out one jazz improvisation on this chord progression (Sunny - Bobby Hebb) Am7 Gm7 C9 Fmaj7 Bm7b5 E7b9 So as the chords go Am7, Gm7 - C9 the improvisation starts in Am ...
4
votes
5answers
4k views

Major Blues Scale over I-IV-V progression

In the C major blues scale, there's no F note. The I-IV-V progression is C-F-G Without resorting to the C minor blues scale, how do I improvise over a I-IV-V progression using the C Major blues ...
1
vote
5answers
109 views

Help with playing a solo- need tips on improvising.

I'm trying to play the sax solo part (with trumpet) on 'Hey Laura'- Gregory Porter (my own improvising), and I'm not sure exactly how the piano's supposed to back me. I think the chords are D, f#m, ...
1
vote
2answers
139 views

Guidelines for Easy Piano Blues, but not boring

Consider the following scenario: you already have the basic chord progression (I-IV-V) you already have the basic melody of a slow (and sad) blues song the music is played only on the piano and by ...
1
vote
4answers
172 views

If I have a good chord progression, how can I come up with good piano melodies?

I'm not really like anything I try with my right hand. It all just sounds dull. Even if I walk up and down the chord with my right hand it's a bit boring. So I try playing two notes at a time, and ...
0
votes
2answers
76 views

Which scales for particular chords [Piano]

Two part question: If I'm playing a ii-V-I (e.g., Dm7, G7, CM7) and just want to improvise, what scales can I play with my right hand while on each chord, and why (so I can follow the logic and ...
18
votes
5answers
1k views

Mental approach to improvisation

Improvisation for guitar is a fairly well-covered topic, with good resources to be found within multiple contexts (Web, traditional literature, etc). However, most of what I've read is basically ...
5
votes
2answers
164 views

Approaches to free improvisation

While most free jazz is surprisingly structured (nothing wrong with that), there is a form of improvisation that is approaching total freedom. I'm thinking of artists like Peter Brötzmann, Paal ...
4
votes
5answers
4k views

Approach to learning arpeggios for chord-tone soloing (shapes or notes)

I am looking to improve in soloing and improvisation. I have learned the CAGED patterns in diatonic scale and their corresponding pentatonic patterns. I have stuck with them for years, but I've ...
1
vote
2answers
124 views

Blues improvisation building blocks

I was taking jazz piano lessons but had to stop. My teacher's approach to teach jazz improvisation was to break it down into a series of "building blocks" which are small motifs found frequently in ...
2
votes
5answers
259 views

Can anyone recommend a good resource of baroque cello etudes or exercises?

I'm trying to improve my upper position cello technique. Does anyone know of some good cello resources that are baroque in nature?
0
votes
1answer
148 views

Improvisation Technique and Theory Over Modal Sus or slash chords

i would like to understand how to improvise over a Modal Sus chord progression. As an example you can look at the video down here at 3"00. There Begins a Improvisation by a Keyboarder and later a ...
2
votes
2answers
149 views

How to improvise chord progressions?

I know how to make a chord progression, but when playing in a certain mode, how can I know instantly which chord is the ii and which chord is V, etc?
2
votes
1answer
72 views

Singing while playing guitar [duplicate]

I want to sing while I am playing guitar. either I miss the strum or I miss the tempo of my voice. How can I combine these two?
10
votes
4answers
751 views

Does improvisation in the classical idiom differ significantly from jazz and folk improvisation?

How do musicians who actually improvise in classical music, such as Robert Levine, JS Bach, Edgar Meyer, church organists and classical ballet pianists, compose in the moment? Are there any ...
5
votes
7answers
3k views

Improvisation on Piano

I've been playing the piano for around 7 years now. I took some lessons when I first started, but other than that I haven't had any lessons. In other words I'm pretty much self-taught. I have a good ...
4
votes
2answers
385 views

What are the characteristics of medieval music? [closed]

What I would like to know is what make medieval music sounds the way it sounds? What are its characteristics? Are there some specific keys? Are there some specific modes? What about rythms? I ...
2
votes
1answer
91 views

Sing along to connect my ear with my instrument (guitar)

I would like to learn and improve my jazz improvisation and soloing skills. Many places I am reading about the importance of singing along to improve my ear. It is completely reasonable, however I ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

Incorporating modes in solos

I have been playing and improvising quite happily for many years on a few different instruments but can't seem to get my head around incorporating modes into my day-to-day playing. I am from a blues ...
1
vote
3answers
107 views

Improvisation Queries [duplicate]

I'm very stuck and quite frustrated at the moment. I have knowledge of scales and chords but when I sit at the keyboard, anything I improvise sounds really bad and I don't know what I can do to be ...
2
votes
3answers
932 views

When/how to switch in between major and minor pentatonic

I'm trying to figure out how I can mix major and minor pentatonic scales and was wondering if someone could explain the underlying theory concepts that would dictate under what chords/chord changes ...
4
votes
2answers
409 views

Getting the most out of a Jazz standard

I recently started practising Jazz standards. I started with Take Five, and Girl from Ipanema as they seemed relatively easy to play and their melody easy to remember. I would like advice on how I can ...
29
votes
10answers
58k views

How to know what notes/chords go together while improvising?

This is 3 questions in one, so it might take a slightly involved answer, or some good links. I'm a very good classical pianist, but I skipped theory entirely in my early days and learned to play well ...
4
votes
2answers
250 views

Starting Jazz Improvisation on Saxophone

I've always wanted to be able to do jazz improvisations and I think I am almost at a point where I should start, though I know little about improvisation. I would like some pointers on technique and ...
4
votes
1answer
350 views

How to train in order to perform a “good” drum solo?

This question might be a little weird, but I was wondering, since there are a lot of different ways to perform a drum solo, how to practice for them. I'm looking forward to play something clean, not ...
4
votes
1answer
461 views

What is a bebop enclosure?

One of the cornerstones of the bebop style is the bebop enclosure. What is it? How is it used in improvisation? What effect does it have?
13
votes
6answers
3k views

Breaking out of pentatonic scales for guitar riffs

I've been playing guitar for about 9 years now. From a young age, my teachers focused a lot on pentatonic scales. So that's what I'm defaulting to when improvising, soloing, writing stuff, etc. ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

What is a parallel mode?

What is a parallel mode? How are the parallel modes used in composition and/or improvisation?
9
votes
3answers
353 views

Should I learn the notes of all the scales

I'm playing guitar and therefore have learnt all the major,minor and harmonic minor patterns. But while improvising I usually forget the right notes of a scale(the problem comes when switching the ...
2
votes
2answers
249 views

Improv on F blues

I'm trying out for a high school jazz band, and on the audition paper it says I need to improvise on an F blues. Can someone explain to me what exactly that is? I know how to improvise on a blues ...
3
votes
3answers
340 views

Is it necessary to learn a new scale to improvise over it?

I'm a beginning guitar theory learner and I'm confused about certain things when improvising/soloing/figuring songs out. I've just started learning, and certain things seem hard to imagine. Let's say ...
11
votes
5answers
10k views

Melody improvisation over chords

My question deals with what scale to play over a given chord progression. For example, consider a progression containing I,II,IV,V in C. I.e., the rhythm guitar is playing C, Dmin, F, and G... My ...
0
votes
1answer
638 views

How does the Improvise for Real method compare to others?

What is the Improvise For Real approach to learning how to improvise and how does it compare to other methods? I would also love to hear about experiences with learning from the resources. One thing ...
2
votes
2answers
154 views

What interval do all the modes have in common?

I was watching a video exercise to play all of the modes you can over a power chord A5 in this case. Is there an interval that all modes share over a particular tonic (A in this example)?
6
votes
7answers
291 views

Is it best to think of the notes or Scale degrees related to a tonic?

When playing guitar,especially improvising,is it best to think of the notes a actual lettered notes or Scale degrees related to a tonic ? Since the keys are easily movable , I'm thinking that its ...
4
votes
2answers
203 views

Is there a proper way to train the ears?

To become a better play, I want to figure out how I can train my ears to be able to pick something up by listening/watching to it and then being able to play it. Or to be able to listen to something ...