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24

Collective improvisation doesn't mean "everyone plays at the same time". Playing jazz is as much about listening as it is being able to play your instrument. In that kind of situation, a player isn't thinking about "what should I play next", but rather "what is the music, at this moment in time, missing that I can provide?" Cacophony is more likely to ...


20

One of the best ways is to play scales using chords. Set up a metronome, and change a chord on every forth beat. Choose a slower tempo if you can't do it on time. When you get comfortable, try more complex rhythm or a finger picking pattern. Here is an example of the F scale with jazz chords: Fmaj7 Gm7 Am7 Bbmaj7 C7 Dm7 Ehalfdim Fmaj7 Here are the ...


20

Do you listen to jazz? I think a big part of getting into jazz as a trained musician means experimenting on your own. One of the biggest challenges for you will likely be learning the style of jazz piano, i.e. being able to play and not sound "square". If you want a listening list, check this out: "100 Greatest Jazz Pianists". The top 5 would be plenty to ...


18

If you're well-trained in music theory and good at sight reading, then you've already got some strong and important assets. I have a background similar to yours, so here are some things that I remember from when I got started: get used to jazz rhythm: if you take for instance 4/4 songs, you'll notice that in many genres the first and third beats are ...


18

There are, of course, an enormous variety of chord progressions used in jazz. That said, here are three you should know: 12-bar Blues The basic 12-bar blues as played in jazz (not as played in blues) usually goes something like: I-IV-I-I-IV-IV-I-vi-ii-V-I-turnaround In blues, all these chords would be dominant sevenths. Jazz players, however, ...


18

In classical theory, the necessity or lack thereof of a particular chord member is generally determined by the note's tendency to lead to another note. That tendency comes most often from the interval of an augmented fourth or diminished fifth. Enharmonically, those intervals are the same, but in context, they are not, and they resolve differently. In a ...


17

Great Question, Edgar! I'm guessing if you've played some of the Real Book and such that you've heard of Jamey Aebersold. If not, you definitely need to check him out and volumes 1, 2, 3, and 54 are very common for beginners. However, if you've exhausted the Jamey Aebersold path and are still unsure of where to go, my best advice is to listen to Jazz ...


13

Unless you have a seven string guitar, this chord is impossible to play on guitar if you want all chord degrees represented. Since it is a G-minor chord over an Fm7, you can really think of the total composite chord as an Fm13, which is a pretty standard jazz chord for guitarists. . . or any jazz player for that matter. What notes you leave out in part ...


12

Before you replace chords with 3 or 4 notes with those with 5 or 6 notes (or even more), re-harmonize a melody by applying these 2 complementary strategies recursively (i.e. each is applicable to the result of applying them, so you can do it in many passes) to chord changes: 1) replace one chord with two (duration of 2 chords in new version = duration of ...


11

Be careful with the Maj 7 on I chords (ie DMaj7), which will quite often conflict with the root (D) played in the melody : you tend to get a b9 interval between the 7th (left hand) and the root (right hand) with sounds very bad. In that case, substitute DM7 with D6 which will sound smoother. The IVM chord (GM in our case) can often be replaced with a IIm7 ...


9

Jazz and classical music have different traditions and points of focus. In classical music the distinction between composer (or creator of music) and performer is highly divided - only in specific instances is the performer allowed to improvise (in the historical practice of music from the Renaissance, Baroque, classical piano concertos by Mozart and ...


9

I am a jazz musician who has helped people make this very transition. I would like to add the good comments here by suggesting a few books for study material: The Jazz Piano Book - a definitive work by Mark Levine The Jazz Theory Book - another definitive work by Mark Levine Modern Harmonic Progression - a wonderfully written book on Tertiary Harmony by ...


9

You asked "or is this fundamentally just a marketing success?" I think the answer to these sorts of questions always has to take into account the historical background. The Hammond organ came on the market in 1935. It became distinctive because it came first. It was popular and sold in large numbers. It was the first commercially successful electronic ...


9

Same way a string quartet does, or for that matter A Far Cry does: body motion and eye contact. Further, even a free-form jazz ensemble rehearses a lot, and the members have a pretty good idea who's next up for a solo, and how many choruses are going to be taken, etc. Miles Davis' famous "play it and I'll tell you what it is later" doesn't really ...


8

I gave an answer to a similar question here, but I'll recap the main ideas. Miles Davis famously said (something like) "Play what you hear, not what you know." In other words, when you're soloing, you don't want to be thinking, "Here comes a dominant seventh chord; I'll play a mixolydian mode over it!" There's just no time for that, and it leads to ...


8

A few more suggestions - Play Blues - not Delta guitar-style blues, but jazz blues, with turn arounds. There are hundreds of sets of jazz blues changes available ( http://www.jajazz.com ). Instead of jumping into the complexity of the full blown jazz repertoire, blues is a great way to get your chord voicings and soloing going. You can take blues a ...


8

The problem is that John Coltrane's jazz involves extremely advanced concepts in harmony and music theory. If you have no musical education, you are asking to go to post-graduate university before you have attended elementary school (if I may use a figure of speech). I am afraid that you may need to spend a considerable amount of time acquiring an education ...


8

Conveniently enough, the altered scale, sometimes called "Super Locrian", which is the 7th mode of jazz minor. 1 b2 b3 b4 b5 b6 b7 So, in C: B C D Eb F G A Relative to A: A Bb C Db Eb F G This gives you, functionally: 1, b9, #9, 3, b5, #5 and b7. (If you played this against a C7) In your case, over A13b9: A Bb C# D E F# G.


8

It's just a name: it used to be based on four bars, which probably would comprise one set of chord changes (eg doowop, I vi IV V), but could just as easily be two or eight bars. It's like calling a song's bridge a 'middle eight', even though the number of bars may be different. The Beatles always called their bridges 'middle eights'.


8

When one plays a walking bass, one uses all sorts of notes that are not necessarily included in the underlying chord. It is not just going up/down an arpeggio. In 4 time, generally 1st and 3rd beats will be played on notes from the chord, but not always. The dominant chord is there to take the music back to tonic (home), so the G is the 'right' bass note to ...


7

The "Scale Syllabus" page inside any Jamey Aebersold book is a good resource. And how about that, you can get it for free from his website in PDF format: Scale Syllabus


7

What I am going to write below is just simple jazz harmony fundamentals, and should naturally be considered as school stuff ! You have to understand the role of each voice in a chord, to define what should be played, and what can be omitted. Mandatory voices The root note defines the root of the chord, and must be played globally. I mean, if you have a ...


7

The Hammond organ is what is called an analog additive synthesizer (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Additive_synthesis) and it works by adding together sine waves that are multiples of the base frequency. A sine wave alone sounds like a whistle or a dull flute, but the more you add up the more interesting the sound can get. The Hammond organ features ...


7

I recommend going to see a live performance, preferably by renowned musicians, and looking for clues. You will see people tremendously listening to each other. You will see glances exchanged, smiles, frowns, astonished faces (if they are good, mostly good astonishment). Keep in mind that the tunes have been reheased before hand, that some groups have been ...


7

Guide tones in a lot of ways are what "define" the feel of a jazz chord, and get you from one chord to the next. This should make it pretty obvious why they are useful in improvisation, since anyone who's ever tried and failed to improvise over an unfamiliar set of changes before didn't know what they were supposed to sound like and couldn't figure out where ...


6

Other ideas that might help: For all of the different types of chords that you know how to play, try out each of the twelve possible harmonic intervals that you can play above the root of that chord type, and understand the kind of sensations and emotions that each sound evokes. Once you discover that you love the sounds of particular harmonic intervals ...


6

Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book" is quite popular, and very thorough. If you have classical theorical background, you will definitely be able to peruse it. It is however not meant as a course, more like a reference text. Jazz Theory Ressources by Bert Ligon (3 vol) is also a nice introduction.


6

The number one thing you should worry about is developing your ear. That's probably 70% - 80% of a professional musician. So... Transcribe songs you like (and some you don't) and practice them, especially the parts that give you a hard time. Use a metronome for songs that are too fast. Play them slow and gradually increase speed.


6

Guide Tones are a set of notes that outline voices in a chord or progression, usually spelling out what type of chord and descending in a linear fashion within the progression. The most commonly referred to Guide Tones are the 3 and 7 of a chord (often called The Guide Tones). Within most sub-genres of jazz it is standard to play chords with a 7 (major 7, ...


6

I've been searching online, talking with musicians about this, and here are some techniques I retained, with some interrogations : Get out of scales from time to time Totally off-scale, no limit (really?) Play a riff and play it elsewhere For instance and play it off one half-tone higher, and then come back / play it a half-tone higher again Ascend and ...



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