Jazz Contrafacts and Reharmonization: A Creative Approach to Jazz Standards

    Creativity in its most basic form is simply the act of taking something old and making it new. Whether you're a novelist, an architect, an engineer or an improviser, artistic creation stems from a desire...Read More

    Creativity in its most basic form is simply the act of taking something old and making it new. Whether you're a novelist, an architect, an engineer or an improviser, artistic...Read More

    8 Improvisation Improvement Projects That Will Change Your Playing

    Practice is an essential part of your journey as a musician. We all do it every day…or at least we try our best to, however daily practice doesn't always guarantee improvement. Why? Simply because not...Read More

    Practice is an essential part of your journey as a musician. We all do it every day…or at least we try our best to, however daily practice doesn't always guarantee...Read More

    Learning Tunes Your Way

    On this site we’ve frequently written about learning tunes. This is no coincidence - learning tunes goes hand in hand with improving as an improviser. Whether you're practicing, performing, or simply listening to a few...Read More

    On this site we’ve frequently written about learning tunes. This is no coincidence - learning tunes goes hand in hand with improving as an improviser. Whether you're practicing, performing, or...Read More

    6 Common Chord Relationships that You Need to Know Now

    How do I connect chords when I'm soloing? You're asking yourself this question in the practice room and you're frustrated when there doesn't seem to be an easy answer. But you're not alone. This is...Read More

    How do I connect chords when I'm soloing? You're asking yourself this question in the practice room and you're frustrated when there doesn't seem to be an easy answer. But...Read More

    Connecting to the Music…Wherever You Are

    Music is meant to be heard live. There is no substitute for the visceral experience of sitting in an audience and soaking up a great live performance. Not only hearing the music, but feeling the...Read More

    Music is meant to be heard live. There is no substitute for the visceral experience of sitting in an audience and soaking up a great live performance. Not only hearing...Read More

    Know the Rules then Break the Rules

    You have to know the rules before you can break them. You’ve probably heard this well-intentioned phrase before. It’s as common and overused as "Practice makes perfect" or any of the countless other sayings that...Read More

    You have to know the rules before you can break them. You’ve probably heard this well-intentioned phrase before. It’s as common and overused as "Practice makes perfect" or any of...Read More

    Quadruple Your Jazz Language in 10 Minutes

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    Learning jazz language is vital to your success as an improvisor. Without it you're truly lost. You may know a scale, a chord, a concept...but without the fundamental ideas of what to do with these...Read More

    Learning jazz language is vital to your success as an improvisor. Without it you're truly lost. You may know a scale, a chord, a concept...but without the fundamental ideas of...Read More

    Thinking About Musical Phrasing for Improvisation

    Recently I’ve been studying and transcribing a lot of Miles from around 1956-1957. Albums like Cookin', Relaxin', and Workin'. More than the notes or the harmonic devices in his solos, the one thing that sticks...Read More

    Recently I’ve been studying and transcribing a lot of Miles from around 1956-1957. Albums like Cookin', Relaxin', and Workin'. More than the notes or the harmonic devices in his solos,...Read More

    One Brick at a Time: That’s how you build a wall

    It's a new year. I guess that means we should be making some resolutions right about now. New beginnings, a fresh start and all that other good stuff. For most people making "resolutions" translates into...Read More

    It's a new year. I guess that means we should be making some resolutions right about now. New beginnings, a fresh start and all that other good stuff. For most...Read More

    The Forgotten Skill

    There is one important part of practicing and learning any musical instrument or musical style that many players are unintentionally missing. A necessary skill that's so obvious it often remains hidden in plain sight. It...Read More

    There is one important part of practicing and learning any musical instrument or musical style that many players are unintentionally missing. A necessary skill that's so obvious it often remains...Read More

    3 Highly Effective Ear Training Exercises You Can Do All By Yourself

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    We've presented tons of exercises on how to practice ear training, but many require that you have someone to train with. So what do you do when you don't have a partner? When you have...Read More

    We've presented tons of exercises on how to practice ear training, but many require that you have someone to train with. So what do you do when you don't have...Read More

    6 Reasons You Should Start Composing Today

    Ican't understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I'm frightened of the old ones - John Cage. At some point as an improviser, whether you welcome it with open arms or avoid it like...Read More

    Ican't understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I'm frightened of the old ones - John Cage. At some point as an improviser, whether you welcome it with open...Read More

    Your Next Musical Milestone: Chromatic ii-V’s

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    The process of learning to improvise is a journey. A long and rewarding journey and one that is punctuated by a series of milestones. This can be hard to see from that comfy seat inside...Read More

    The process of learning to improvise is a journey. A long and rewarding journey and one that is punctuated by a series of milestones. This can be hard to see...Read More

    Overcoming Creative Blocks as an Improviser

    Despite what everyone thinks, being creative isn't easy. You don't just suddenly find yourself with talent one day and immediately start creating great works of art. It takes years of hard work to develop artistic...Read More

    Despite what everyone thinks, being creative isn't easy. You don't just suddenly find yourself with talent one day and immediately start creating great works of art. It takes years of...Read More

    Another Look at Slow Practice for Jazz Improvisation

    Play it slow. Feel every beat. Subdvide. Hear every note. Concentrate on every single detail. There are dozens of different ways to describe the process of slow practice, yet it seems that the majority of...Read More

    Play it slow. Feel every beat. Subdvide. Hear every note. Concentrate on every single detail. There are dozens of different ways to describe the process of slow practice, yet it...Read More

    Developing Aural Knowledge: How to Turn Music Theory into Music

    Jazz is smart people music! I first heard these words from the great pianist Harold Mabern. Walking through the practice rooms at school one day, as was usually the case, a group of eager students...Read More

    Jazz is smart people music! I first heard these words from the great pianist Harold Mabern. Walking through the practice rooms at school one day, as was usually the case,...Read More