Category: New jazz piano lesson updates

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

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 Jazz turnaround part 2

The jazz turnaround is usually a sequence of four chords that starts with the tonic chord (I) and ends with the dominant (V). In part 1 we looked at what I describe as a pop turnaround, rather than a jazz turnaround. The pop turnaround looks like this: I – V I – IV – V.… 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 »

Jazz Basics, part 2

More about the most important chord in jazz: the dominant 7. When discussing jazz basics there is nothing more basic than your understanding of the dominant 7 chord and its functions. Let’s begin by taking a look at the row of the seven 7th chords constructed over one major scale. Here is an example of… Read more »

Finding the sweet notes

Finding the sweet notes In video lesson 24 of Learn Jazz Piano  I focus on how songwriters employ ‘sweet notes’ to add that spine tingling effect to their melody. I then relate this to jazz improvisation and show you how to employ this technique in your solos. Here’s an extract from chapter 10 of my eBook… Read more »

How to play a jazz solo

How to Solo My learn jazz piano video course is now around half way through the series ‘How to play a jazz solo.’  There now follows a summary of these lessons so far with a link to my jazz course. Lesson 21:  Connecting hands   In this lesson I take you through techniques to incorporate… Read more »

Learning Jazz Piano lesson 22 now available

Learning Jazz Piano with Paul Abrahams ‘HOW TO SOLO, PART 2.’ The second video lesson in this learning jazz piano series is called ‘Chords and their scales.’ In lesson 22, I take the 4 chord types and pair them with all their scales and modes. The obvious pairings are as follows: Major chords: major scale Minor chords: dorian mode… Read more »