Category Archives: lesson chat for Learn Jazz Piano online

This is the place to find lesson chat for Learn Jazz Piano online.

Great jazz albums part 4

Great jazz albums part 4

Great jazz albums

This is the final instalment of my list of great jazz albums. You can find the complete list in book 3 of my eBook Learn  Jazz Piano. Here’s the link:

http://www.learnjazzpianoonline.com/book-3.html

I begin with my favourite jazz musician of all time: John Coltrane, and to chose just one album is almost impossible. However, it has to be a recording with McCoy Tyner, The obvious choice would be A Love Supreme, but I’ve chosen My Favourite Things because you can hear his approach to standards.

For the same reason, I’ve chosen Herby Hancock’s The New  Standard.

Chic Corea’s output has been and continues to be varied  in genre but Acoustic Band  gives you an insight into his approach to standards like Autumn Leaves and So In Love.

Exactly the same goes for Keith Jarrett. His standards trio, for me, has never been bettered.

So here goes…

————————

Artist: John Coltrane

Instrument: sax

Title: My Favourite Things

Date: 1961

Piano: McCoy Tyner

————————

Artist: Wayne Shorter

Instrument: tenor sax

Title: Juju

Date: 1964

Piano: McCoy Tyner

————————

Artist: Herbie Hancock

Instrument: piano

Title: Maiden Voyage

Date: 1965

————————

Artist: Herbie Hancock

Instrument: piano

Title: The New Standard

Date: 1966

————————

Artist: Wes Montgomery

Instrument: guitar

Title: Smokin’ At The Half Note

Date: 1965

Piano: Wynton Kelly

————————

Artist: Stan Getz

Instrument: tenor sax

Title: Anniversary

Date: 1987

Piano: Kenny Barron

————————

Artist: Chic Corea

Instrument: piano

Title: Now He Sings, Now He Sobs

Date: 1968

————————

Artist: Chic Corea

Instrument: piano

Title: Akoustic Band

Date: 1989

————————

Artist: Keith Jarrett

Instrument: piano

Title: Standards

Date: 1983

————————

Artist: Keith Jarrett

Instrument: piano

Title: Bye Bye Blackbird

Date: 1993

Great jazz albums
Keith Jarrett

And here’s the link to my video course:

http://www.learnjazzpianoonline.com/lessons.html

Recommended jazz albums

Recommended jazz albums

Recommended jazz albums – part 3

This is part 3 of my list of recommended jazz albums that I think you should be listening to. You can find the complete list in chapter 10 of  Learn Jazz Piano book 3.

I’m starting with another essential Bill Evans album and this time it’s live. I was fortunate enough to see him at Ronnie Scott’s in 1980.

For learning jazz pianists (and I count myself among them) there are certain piano players that I find more accessible and I’ve listed two of them below: Horace Silver and Wynton Kelly.

Anyone that knows me will not be surprised that I’ve included two Monk albums. The eccentricity of Monk often overshadows his unique approach. I feel it’s a mistake to assume that he’s playing strange and dissonant voicings just  to be different. In fact, everything he plays has a logic and purpose.

My one ‘guilty pleasure’ in this list is the inclusion of Andrew Hill.  Again, he is an acquired taste, but a true original.

I’ve not included Oscar Peterson in his own right as you can hear him supporting the great sax player Ben Webster in his 1959 album.

—————

Artist: Bill Evans

Instrument: piano

Title: The Complete Village Vanguard Recordings

Date: 1961

—————

Artist: Charles Mingus

Instrument: bass

Title: Ah Um

Date: 1959

Piano: Horace Parlan

—————

Artist: Ben Webster

Instrument: sax

Title: Ben Webster With The Oscar Peterson Trio

Date: 1959

Piano: Oscar Peterson

—————

Artist: Wynton Kelly

Instrument: piano

Title: Kelly Blue

Date: 1959

 —————

Artist: Hank Mobley

Instrument: tenor sax

Title: Roll Call

Date: 1960

Piano: Wynton Kelly

—————

Artist: Art Blakey

Instrument: drums

Title: Mosaic

Date: 1961

Piano: Cedar Walton

—————

Artist: Horace Silver

Instrument: piano

Title: Horace Silver And The Jazz Messengers

Date: 1954

—————

Artist: Dexter Gordon

Instrument: tenor sax

Title: Go!

Date: 1962

Piano: Sonny Clark

—————

Artist: Andrew Hill

Instrument: piano

Title: Point Of Departure

Date: 1964

————— 

Artist: Art Blakey

Instrument: drums

Title: Mosaic

Date: 1961

Piano: Cedar Walton

—————

Artist: Thelonious Monk

Instrument: piano

Title: It’s Monk’s Time

Date: 1964

—————

Artist: Thelonious Monk

Instrument: piano

Title: Monk Alone

Date: 1962 – 1968

Recommended jazz albums
Monk

Happy listening!

Paul

Learn Bebop scales part 2

Learn Bebop scales part 2

Here is  Learn Bebop scales part 2. This is an extract from my forthcoming book ‘How To Solo.’. It will be the 4th in the series of my eBooks Learn Jazz Piano.

You can purchase books 1, 2 and 3 by clicking here.

Learn Bebop scales part 2

In my previous blog I illustrated the Bebop Dominant scale in C. Take another look before continuing.

Fig 45

learn bebop scales
Bebop Dominant scale of C

Bebop Dorian scale

The Dorian mode is usually associated with minor 7 chords.

To transform the Dorian mode into the bebop Dorian scale, we insert our chromatic passing note between steps 3 and 4.

For reasons that will soon become apparent, I’m illustrating this scale in G.

Fig 46

learn jazz piano dorian bebop scale
Dorian bebop scale

Now compare the C bebop dominant scale: fig 45 (see above) with the G bebop dorian scale (fig 46) and you will notice that these two bebop scales share the same passing note.

Their respective chords are Gmin7 and C7: II – V.

We can therefore employ the same notes to play any II – V phrase.

Fig 47

learn jazz piano bebop scales
II-V sequence

Bebop melodic minor scale

By adding one extra note to a scale, more bebop scales can be created.

Add a note between 5 and 6 of the melodic minor to create the bebop melodic minor.

Fig 48

learn jazz piano bebop scales
Bebop melodic minor scale

Bebop half diminished scale

In order to create a bebop scale to fit a half diminished chord (min7(5)), use the minor bebop scale 3 half steps up from that chord.

Fig 49

Bebop scales part 2
bebop half diminished scale

There is much debate as to which note to add when playing these scales. There’s something to be said for the argument that if a minor7 chord is functioning as a II, then adding a note between 7 and 8 (rather than 3 and 4) results in more chord tones occurring on downbeats.

Fig 50

learn Bebop scales
minor chord options

If you wish to look further into this subject I would recommend David Baker’s How To Play Bebop.

I have now produced 22 video lessons in my Learn Jazz Piano course. You can find them by clicking here.

You can find part 1 of ‘Learn Bebop scales’ below.

New 20-pack bundle for playing Jazz piano online

New 20-pack bundle for playing Jazz piano online

I’ve been asked to bundle all 20 playing jazz piano online video lessons into a discounted 20-pack.

So here it is!
http://www.learnjazzpianoonline.com/lessons-1-20.html
So that’s 10 hours of video and 80 backing tracks. That should keep you busy! The more playing jazz piano online, the better.

Here’s a summary of the lesson content:

Lesson 1 – From scales to chords

  • Soloing over the Pentatonic scale
  • Mastering intervals
  • The V – I concept
  • One formula to construct all major scales
  • 7 chords, one family
learning jazz piano online
7 chords, 1 scale

Lesson 2 – Building a chord sequence

  • Chord sequences
  • The relative minor and its scales
  • The family row of minor triads
  • Soloing in a minor key

Lesson 3 –  Mastering every key

  • The circle of 5ths
  • How to play in any key
  • Preview of the II-V-I sequence
  • Introduction to the turnaround

Lesson 4 – Swing time

  • Learning to swing
  • The construction of 7th chords
  • How to interpret chord symbols
  • Shells – how not to upset the bass player

Lesson 5 – Walking 3s

  • Turnarounds part 2: I – VI – II -V
  • Walking 3s and 7s: the seeds of vertical improvisation.
  • How to use passing notes.
  • Voice leading

Lesson 6 – Extensions

  • Extensions: how to use 9ths, 11ths and 13th.
  • Know which extensions work with which chord.
  • Voicing a chord using extensions.
  • Introduction to Modes.

Lesson 7 – The II-V-I sequence

  • Master the II – V – I sequence in all keys
  • Seven soloing techniques over II – V – I
  • Alterations: know your sharp 11 from your flat 13
  •  Flat 9s and the diminished chord

Lesson 8 – How to comp

  • Comp like a pro
  • Find the best chord voicings
  • Use the right extensions
  • Build up to a five-note comp
  • Explore rhythmic variations

Lesson 9 – Modes

  • Know your Mixodydian from your Dorian
  • Grasp the connection between modes and chords
  • The art of modal soloing and comping
  • How to play ‘So What’

Lesson 10 – Autumn Leaves part 1

  • Playing your first standard
  • Learning the melody
  • The comp
  • The shells
  • The solo

Lesson 11 – Autumn Leaves part 2

  • Taking Autumn Leaves to the next level
  • How to fill out the melody
  • Comping with alterations
  • Soloing with vertical improvisation

Lesson 12 – The Blues part 1

Play with confidence over the blues.

  • How to solo creatively
  • The minor blues
  • Blues in 12/8
    Plus lots of tips, tricks and licks!

Lesson 13 – The Blues part 2

  • Taking the blues beyond the basics.
  • Chord changes that turn blues into jazz.
  • Lydian dominant & diminished scales.
  • Rootess left-hand voicings.

Lesson 14 – Bebop blues

  • Left hand 4-note rootless voicings
  • Constructing the Bebop sequence.
  • How to solo over a Bebop blues
  • Comping over a Bebop blues

Lesson 15 – Rootless voicing

  • Constructing left hand rootless voicings.
  • Applying  rootless voicings to II-V-I and turnarounds.
  • Adding the alterations: b9, b13 etc.

Lesson 16 – Tritone substitution

  • Diminished theory
  • Soloing over diminshed chords
  • Using diminished scales over dominant 7ths
  • Mastering tritone substitution

Lesson 17 – Putting it together

  • Now put your knowledge to work!
  • Combine learned techniques to play a jazz standard.
  • Rootless voicings + tritone substitution
  • Altered and diminished scales

Lesson 18 – Decoding a standard

  • Analysis of ‘All The Things You Are.’
  • How tunes are structured.
  • Identifying key centres
  • Connecting melody and chords
  • How to learn tunes

Lesson 19 – Reharmonising a standard

  • Chord substitution
  • How to reharmonise a tune
  • All The Thing You Are: advanced
  • Take The A Train reharmonised

Lesson 20 – Rhythm Changes

  • Next to a 12-bar blues, Rhythm Changes
    is the most important chord sequence in jazz.
    Master all its forms in this vital video lesson.

 

For my Learn Jazz Piano eBooks click here.

 

I recommend that you work through my’ playing jazz piano online’ lessons in conjunction with the 3 Learn Jazz Piano eBooks.

playing jazz piano online
My eBooks

16-20 lesson pack for Jazz Piano video course

16-20 lesson pack for Jazz Piano video course

5-pack of lessons for jazz piano video course

As I’ve now completed 20 video lessons of my Jazz Piano video course,  I’ve packaged lessons 16-20 into a discounted 5-pack.

Click here for link

Lesson 16

  • Soloing over diminshed chords
  • Using diminished scales over dominant 7ths
  • Mastering tritone substitution
jazz piano video course
B diminished scale

Lesson 17

  • Now put your knowledge to work!
  • Combine learned techniques to play a jazz standard.
  • Rootless voicings + tritone substitution
  • Altered and diminished scales
jazz piano video course
3 scales

Lesson 18

  • Analysis of ‘All The Things You Are.’
  • How tunes are structured.
  • Identifying key centres
  • Connecting melody and chords
  • How to learn tunes
jazz piano video course
All the things you are

Lesson 19

  • Chord substitution
  • How to reharmonise a tune
  • All The Thing You Are: advanced
  • Take The A Train reharmonised
jazz piano video course
All the things you are with tritone subs

Lesson 20

  • Next to a 12-bar blues, Rhythm Changes
    is the most important chord sequence in jazz.
    Master all its forms in this vital video lesson.
jazz piano video course
The A section of Rhythm Changes

 

 

Lesson 20 of Play Jazz Piano Online now available!

Lesson 20 of Play Jazz Piano Online now available!

Lesson 20 of Play Jazz Piano Online is all about
Rhythm Changes.

My Play Jazz Piano Online video course would not be complete without a tutorial about Rhythm changes. Next to a 12-bar blues, this is the most important chord sequence in jazz, and  is one that every jazz musician needs to be familiar with. Rhythm Changes is based on the chord sequence of the song  I Got Rhythm by George Gershwin. Jazz composers have substituted Gershwin’s  tune with their own, but have kept the chord sequence. Actually, there are a few variations of this sequence you need to know, and I take you through the options in this 30-minute video lesson.

Click here to access lesson.

In 1930, George Gershwin wrote a tune called I Got Rhythm. Subsequently, jazz composers took to retaining the chord changes but replacing Gershwin’s tune with their own. This may have had something to do with avoiding copyright charges. More importantly, players were drawn to the chord changes, finding them to be an ideal vehicle for improvisation.

Many composers have turned their hand to Rhythm Changes. I suggest that you listen to some of the following:

  • Lester Leaps In – Lester Young
  • Anthropology – Charlie Parker
  • Cotton Tail – Duke Ellington
  • Rhythm-A-Ning – Thelonious Monk
  • Oleo – Sonny Rollins
  • The Theme – Miles Davis

Here’s a chord chart for the A section:

play jazz piano online
The A section of Rhythm Changes

As always, the video comes with 4 backing tracks, sheet music and a quiz. If you want to play jazz piano online get started now!

Get lesson 20 here!

 

 

So What’s Next for Jazz Piano tuition online?

So What's Next for Jazz Piano tuition online?

Jazz piano tuition online would not be complete without Rhythm Changes

Well, I’m about to start work on lesson 20 and it will be called Rhythm Changes. This is based on the tune ‘I Got Rhythm’ by George Gershwin.

 Jazz Piano tuition online
George Gershwin

Next to a 12-bar blues, Rhythm Changes is the most important chord sequence in jazz, but I’ll tell you more about this nearer the time. But I will say that this is an essential part of  Jazz Piano tuition online.

Lessons 18 and 19 were all about mapping a sequence and then substituting the chords. I used All The Things You Are and Take The A Train to demonstrate how to interpret a song structure and then reharmonise it.

Get lessons 18 & 19 here!

(Remember to scroll down when you arrive on the page.)

learning Jazz piano online – lesson 18

learning Jazz piano online - lesson 18

Video lesson 18 of Learning Jazz Piano online is now available and is called ‘Decoding a jazz standard.’

Can you solo your way through any jazz standard? In order to do this, you need to interpret the song’s map and identify all its key centres. Lesson 18 of learning jazz piano online helps your achieve this.

I use Kern’s ‘All The Things You Are’ to take you through various techniques that will demystify tricky songs.

learning Jazz piano online
All The Things You Are by Jerome Kern

Seeing chords in isolation is not the way forward. Chords sit within groups that fit together into an overall structure. Learn more at the link below.
http://www.learnjazzpianoonline.com/lessons.html

Here’s an extract from my 3rd eBook: Learning Jazz Piano online:

There are countless excellent recordings of this song, but my personal favorite is by the pianist Hampton Hawes. The solo introduction is a little flowery, but once the trio kicks in, Hawes creates one glorious idea after another. See chapter 10 for details of this recording

The song form is usually described as ABC: 16 + 8 + 12 = 36 bars.

  • A1 states the melody.
  • A2 repeats it in a new key.
  • B, the bridge, introduces a new 4-bar phrase and then transposes it down a minor 3rd.
  • C returns to the original melody, but remains in the same key, taking an extra four bars to conclude.

The form could also be described as AABA: 8 + 8 + 8 + 12 = 36 bars.

A good songwriter takes great care when placing the targeted or emphasized melody note over its harmony. A strong, grounded melody note might be 1 or 5, but a more lyrical note is 3. This is Kern’s choice for most of his tune.

A song can be in any key that the singer or bandleader chooses. However, tunes played as jazz instrumentals often have default keys. All The Things You Are is usually written in Ab, so I’ll stick with that.

Here are the first 16 bars.

I’ve boxed all the 3s. Notice how every 3, with two exceptions, falls on beat 1 of the bar.

learning jazz piano

 

 

The two exceptions, in bars 4 and 12, occur at beat 2, as this is where the melodic accent falls.

Here’s lesson 17 of learn jazz piano

Here's lesson 17 of learn jazz piano

Learn Jazz Piano with Paul Abrahams

Here’s lesson 17!

‘Putting it together.’

I’ve called lesson 17 ‘Putting It Together’ because we’ve now reached the stage when all previous knowledge can be put to practical use.
This new lesson combines your knowledge of rootless voicings (lesson 15) and tritone substitution (lesson 16).
We also throw the whole tone,  diminished and altered scales into the mix.
learn jazz piano
3 new scales

I show you how to use all these techniques with II-V-I and I-VI-II-V (turnaround) sequences.
Then we put all this to work using the chord chart of
Fly Me To The Moon.

As always, this learn jazz piano video comes with 4 downloadable backing tracks, sheet music and a quiz. Learn to play jazz piano the easy way.

Get lesson 17 here!

(Remember to scroll down when you arrive on the page).

If you’re not up to speed with rootless voicings and tritone substitution, here’s the link to lessons 15 and 16.
________________________________________________________________

Here’s a summary of lessons 1 – 16:

Lesson 1 – From scales to chords

  • Soloing over the Pentatonic scale
  • Mastering intervals
  • The V – I concept
  • One formula to construct all major scales
  • 7 chords, one family
learn jazz piano
7 chords, 1 scale

Lesson 2 – Building a chord sequence

  • Chord sequences
  • The relative minor and its scales
  • The family row of minor triads
  • Soloing in a minor key

Lesson 3 –  Mastering every key

  • The circle of 5ths
  • How to play in any key
  • Preview of the II-V-I sequence
  • Introduction to the turnaround

Lesson 4 – Swing time

  • Learning to swing
  • The construction of 7th chords
  • How to interpret chord symbols
  • Shells – how not to upset the bass player

Lesson 5 – Walking 3s

  • Turnarounds part 2: I – VI – II -V
  • Walking 3s and 7s: the seeds of vertical improvisation.
  • How to use passing notes.
  • Voice leading

Lesson 6 – Extensions

  • Extensions: how to use 9ths, 11ths and 13th.
  • Know which extensions work with which chord.
  • Voicing a chord using extensions.
  • Introduction to Modes.

Lesson 7 – The II-V-I sequence

  • Master the II – V – I sequence in all keys
  • Seven soloing techniques over II – V – I
  • Alterations: know your sharp 11 from your flat 13
  •  Flat 9s and the diminished chord

Lesson 8 – How to comp

  • Comp like a pro
  • Find the best chord voicings
  • Use the right extensions
  • Build up to a five-note comp
  • Explore rhythmic variations

Lesson 9 – Modes

  • Know your Mixodydian from your Dorian
  • Grasp the connection between modes and chords
  • The art of modal soloing and comping
  • How to play ‘So What’

Lesson 10 – Autumn Leaves part 1

  • Playing your first standard
  • Learning the melody
  • The comp
  • The shells
  • The solo

Lesson 11 – Autumn Leaves part 2

  • Taking Autumn Leaves to the next level
  • How to fill out the melody
  • Comping with alterations
  • Soloing with vertical improvisation

Lesson 12 – The Blues part 1

Play with confidence over the blues.

  • How to solo creatively
  • The minor blues
  • Blues in 12/8
    Plus lots of tips, tricks and licks!

Lesson 13 – The Blues part 2

  • Taking the blues beyond the basics.
  • Chord changes that turn blues into jazz.
  • Lydian dominant & diminished scales.
  • Rootess left-hand voicings.

Lesson 14 – Bebop blues

  • Left hand 4-note rootless voicings
  • Constructing the Bebop sequence.
  • How to solo over a Bebop blues
  • Comping over a Bebop blues

Lesson 15 – Rootless voicing

  • Constructing left hand rootless voicings.
  • Applying  rootless voicings to II-V-I and turnarounds.
  • Adding the alterations: b9, b13 etc.

Lesson 16 – Tritone substitution

  • Diminished theory
  • Soloing over diminshed chords
  • Using diminished scales over dominant 7ths
  • Mastering tritone substitution

For my Learn Jazz Piano eBooks click here.

learn jazz piano

jazz piano course online: lesson 17

jazz piano course online: lesson 17

Lesson 17 of my jazz piano course online is nearly ready.

My jazz piano course online is about to reach video lesson 17. This jazz piano lesson combines your knowledge of rootless voicings (lesson 15) and tritone substitution (lesson 16). Learn to improvise with my clear and methodical method. I show you how to use these techniques with II-V-I and I-VI-II-V (turnaround) sequences. Then we put all this to work using the chord chart of Fly Me To The Moon. This should all be ready by the end of next week. Here’s the link to available lessons.

http://www.learnjazzpianoonline.com/lessons.html

 

  • Question: Which two notes link rootless voicings with tritone substitution?
  • Answer: 3 and 7.

If we remove all non-essential notes from a rootless II – V – I sequence we arrive at fig 1

Fig 1

jazz piano course online
3s and 7s of chord

Dmin7 = 3 + 7

G7 = 7 + 3

Cmaj7 = 3 + 7 (7 no longer has the same harmonic function in this major 7 chord.)

Tritone substitution occurs when one dominant 7 replaces another, three whole-steps away from its original

Therefore, the tritone substitute of G7 is Db7.

We have also learnt that both chords contain the same two notes: 3 and 7.

  • 3 and 7 of G7 is B and F.
  • 3 and 7 of Db7 is F and B.

This means that when we play figs 1 and 2, these 2 notes represent both G7 and Db7.

Fig 2

jazz piano course online
Adding the tritone substitute

 

Happy playing, Paul