Category: New jazz piano lesson updates

This is the place to find lots of information about updates for new jazz lessons.

Learning jazz piano my way

I have called this article ‘learning jazz piano my way’ as it combines how I came to learn jazz piano myself and how I teach it. My beginnings I was born and brought up in West Ham, London. Although my parents were not in favour of my taking up music professionally they nevertheless sent me… Read more »

Intros and outros

In this article called intros and outros I am focusing on a subject that is often overlooked when playing a tune: how to start and end a tune. Intros and outros: intros Let’s imagine that you are accompanying a singer or instrumentalist about to sing or play the melody. The most obvious way for the… Read more »

Chord substitution

In this article we will explore chord substitution. This phrase is exactly as it sounds: we replace one chord with another. This will result in increased harmonic options that will enhance your solos. Chord substitution: major to minor and minor to major Let’s begin with a very easy chord substitution. Take a major 7 chord,… Read more »

Easy steps to learn jazz piano episode 6

The 3 extensions In these easy steps to learn jazz piano we have reached the three extensions and ways to use them. These three extensions are 9, 11 and 13. You can think of them as 2, 4 and 6 of the Mixolydian mode. You can get the same result by using the major scale,… Read more »

How can I start learning blues piano

Part 1 Whenever I have a potential piano student wishing to start learning blues piano I will always tell them that although there are some separate rules, structures and approaches, I prefer to think of blues and jazz to be interchangeable. There are some great jazz players very influenced by the blues such as Wynton… Read more »

How can I learn jazz piano?

Part 1 My immediate response to this question after a 50 year pro career as a keyboard player and teacher is “I’m still learning”.And if Sonny Rollins, at the age of 80 said that he was still working it, then us lesser mortals can take note. You may wish to skip the following biographical details.… Read more »

The turnaround in jazz part 1

The turnaround in jazz is usually a chord sequence of four chords that starts with the tonic (the ‘I’ chord) and ends with the dominant (the ‘5’ chord). There are variations of this sequence and I suggest that you learn to recognise the many variations. I’ll be using Roman numerals to describe each chord. I… Read more »

Jazz basics 4: the altered scale

The altered scale derives from the melodic minor scale a half step above the root note of the dominant 7. All will be explained! We are now going to explore the altered scale. This scale has all four altered notes and can be used over a dominant 7 chord to great effect when soloing. (This… Read more »

How I teach jazz piano

In 1967 I turned professional as a keyboard player and piano teacher and now that I’m nearly 75 and still teaching, perhaps it’s time to reflect on how I teach jazz piano. I passed all my exams at secondary school except for music, probably because by this time I was already playing in bands and… Read more »

Jazz basics 3: the dominant 7 chord in jazz

Why is the dominant 7 chord in jazz so important? To answer this question I will first separate this chord into two categories: moving and static. Moving This applies generally to any classical harmony but when this dominant 7 chord in jazz is moving towards its resolution it can be thought of as a tension… Read more »