Stop Running From Your Creativity

    Listen carefully...Can you hear that? Underneath the thoughts about your credit card bill and next Tuesday’s dinner plans. Past the anxiety about that upcoming job interview and the frustration with your painfully slow progress in...Read More

    Listen carefully...Can you hear that? Underneath the thoughts about your credit card bill and next Tuesday’s dinner plans. Past the anxiety about that upcoming job interview and the frustration with...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

    What to do when You Crash and Burn on a Tune

    Tell me if this scenario sounds familiar:You walk into a jam session ready to play a tune that you've been sounding great on. As the band finishes up a set you gather up your courage,...Read More

    Tell me if this scenario sounds familiar:You walk into a jam session ready to play a tune that you've been sounding great on. As the band finishes up a set...Read More

    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

    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

    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

    Playing Colors, Imitating Movies, & Watching TV: Bizarre Jazz Improvisation Tech …

    What if you could approach something in a completely new way than you've ever done before? What would happen? Perhaps an entire world of possibility exists from this new angle, but how do you get...Read More

    What if you could approach something in a completely new way than you've ever done before? What would happen? Perhaps an entire world of possibility exists from this new angle,...Read More

    Getting to the Next Level: 5 Ways to Speed Up Your Musical Progress

    Learning to improvise is a path with many steps leading to many different levels. Contrary to the belief held by some that improvising is a talent, or even a skill allowed to only a special...Read More

    Learning to improvise is a path with many steps leading to many different levels. Contrary to the belief held by some that improvising is a talent, or even a skill...Read More

    3 More Gems From Harold Mabern

    In my first 3 Gems Harold Mabern Told Me, we learned how much Harold stresses: relying on your ear, being greedy for the music, and the difference between inspiration and motivation. Harold's full of incredible...Read More

    In my first 3 Gems Harold Mabern Told Me, we learned how much Harold stresses: relying on your ear, being greedy for the music, and the difference between inspiration and...Read More

    10 Jazz Improvisation Tips to Remember

    There are countless tips for jazz improvisation that you'll want to remember, but these 10 are essential! 1.) Think quality over quantity Often we are in a hurry to 'catch up.' Wherever you are...Read More

    There are countless tips for jazz improvisation that you'll want to remember, but these 10 are essential! 1.) Think quality over quantity Often we are in a hurry to...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

    How to Steal like a Pro: 3 Incredibly Useful Tactics for Better Jazz Solos

    Your mother probably taught you not to steal…That taking something that wasn’t yours was wrong or that pocketing an item from the shelves of a store could land you into a world of trouble. But what...Read More

    Your mother probably taught you not to steal…That taking something that wasn’t yours was wrong or that pocketing an item from the shelves of a store could land you into a...Read More

    How To Create Your Own Jazz Exercises From a Transcribed Line

    You hear it over and over. Just transcribe. You want to get better? Transcribe. You want to have a better sound. Transcribe. Can't seem to play over Rhythm Changes? Transcribe. And yes, when people tell...Read More

    You hear it over and over. Just transcribe. You want to get better? Transcribe. You want to have a better sound. Transcribe. Can't seem to play over Rhythm Changes? Transcribe....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

    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

    Putting on the Pressure: How to Motivate Yourself in the Practice Room

    Remember those times in school, where you were assigned a huge project and given a deadline to finish it by? You know, the ones where the teacher threw an enormous assignment at you as soon...Read More

    Remember those times in school, where you were assigned a huge project and given a deadline to finish it by? You know, the ones where the teacher threw an enormous...Read More