Overcoming Mental Limitations in Music

    I can’t. We’ve all said these fateful words at one point or another. Fill in the blank for your own situation. “I can’t (____)”...draw, run long distances, wake up early, stop eating cheesecake. Every day...Read More

    I can’t. We’ve all said these fateful words at one point or another. Fill in the blank for your own situation. “I can’t (____)”...draw, run long distances, wake up early,...Read More

    Write Jazz Tunes Like a Pop Star

    Ilove John Mayer. There, I said it. My secret is out. I'd totally go to one of his concerts if I could stomach being one of many in a herd of screaming fourteen year old...Read More

    Ilove John Mayer. There, I said it. My secret is out. I'd totally go to one of his concerts if I could stomach being one of many in a herd...Read More

    The Philosophy of Learning Jazz Improvisation: Thinking like a Composer

    Composition is selective improvisation - Igor Stravinsky. In 15 seconds the difference between composition and improvisation is that in composition you have all the time you want to decide what to say in 15 seconds,...Read More

    Composition is selective improvisation - Igor Stravinsky. In 15 seconds the difference between composition and improvisation is that in composition you have all the time you want to decide what...Read More

    The Anatomy of a Sound: Overcoming the Barrier of Music Theory

    From the moment we are born, the world tends to have a container already built for us to fit inside: A social security number, a gender, a race, a profession, an I.Q. I ponder if...Read More

    From the moment we are born, the world tends to have a container already built for us to fit inside: A social security number, a gender, a race, a profession,...Read More

    Becoming a Musical Character

    Have you ever seen a movie where a certain character stuck with you long after the film was over? Or what about a piece of artwork that kept popping up in your mind's eye? Maybe...Read More

    Have you ever seen a movie where a certain character stuck with you long after the film was over? Or what about a piece of artwork that kept popping up...Read More

    Critical Vs Creative Thinking: How Initial Judgments Can Cripple Your Learning

    That's really good. And that's bad. That's ugly. And that's pretty. I like that. But I hate that. That sucks. But that's great. Our first instinct upon experiencing something, whether it's hearing something, seeing something,...Read More

    That's really good. And that's bad. That's ugly. And that's pretty. I like that. But I hate that. That sucks. But that's great. Our first instinct upon experiencing something, whether...Read More

    The Improviser’s Tipping Point

    When exactly do I become good at improvising? Is there a single point that occurs where I can finally play like I want to? These are questions that inevitably pop up and hover at the...Read More

    When exactly do I become good at improvising? Is there a single point that occurs where I can finally play like I want to? These are questions that inevitably pop...Read More

    The Art of Teaching and Being Taught

    Acrobatics is one of the most amazing things I've ever seen. The physical prowess needed to do even the most basic maneuvers is on par with that of the Incredible Hulk, while the necessary flexibility...Read More

    Acrobatics is one of the most amazing things I've ever seen. The physical prowess needed to do even the most basic maneuvers is on par with that of the Incredible...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

    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

    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

    How to Be More Creative Than A Deer

    This is a box. This is your mind in a box. Many people's minds never leave the box. Why? Thinking creatively is something we all do naturally. It's our instinctive and ordinary way of being....Read More

    This is a box. This is your mind in a box. Many people's minds never leave the box. Why? Thinking creatively is something we all do naturally. It's our instinctive...Read More

    Learn to Change the Way You Hear

    Each day when you get your instrument out of its case and set out to practice improvisation, your goal is to play the right notes. Whether it's playing with great technique and great sound or...Read More

    Each day when you get your instrument out of its case and set out to practice improvisation, your goal is to play the right notes. Whether it's playing with great...Read More

    Is Improvising Really Improvising?

    If there is one thing about playing jazz that's shrouded in mystery, it is improvisation. Improvisation exists in other types of music, even in musical traditions from the far reaches of the globe, but in...Read More

    If there is one thing about playing jazz that's shrouded in mystery, it is improvisation. Improvisation exists in other types of music, even in musical traditions from the far reaches...Read More

    Mixing Jazz Techniques, Lines, And Concepts

    When we practice jazz improvisation, we zoom in on one area of study so much that we often lose sight of the whole. How do we practice in this truly focused way, while simultaneously train...Read More

    When we practice jazz improvisation, we zoom in on one area of study so much that we often lose sight of the whole. How do we practice in this truly...Read More