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What I think you should be able to do is: Play the melody fluently; if you can learn it by heart, even better, but if not don't worry. Play the melody slightly varied. If you listen to the same jazz song by many artists, you'll see that none of them play it the same. Everyone changes it a bit here and there. That's something you'll have to do yourself. ...


1

Following on from Shev's really good answer, other facets are to be able to play each song at different tempos, and in different keys. Often jazz players 'mess around' with standards, and use different tempos, and sometimes time sigs change, just for fun - or a challenge. Keys will change for songs as they become dependent on the vocalist. "I know xyz is in ...



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