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12-bar jazz blues example
A twelve-bar jazz blues in G major for solo piano (melody and walking bass), and a twelve-bar blues in E flat major (walking bass and right-hand comping patterns).
A brief intro to bebop ‘enclosures’, a foundational jazz pattern.
Contains several examples of phrases with enclosures, including a real-world example in the form of four bars from a Keith Jarrett solo.
A 16th-note bebop phrase that works over a number of different chord types.
Bebop figure 1 (works over major 7th, minor 7th, dominant 7th and Phrygian chords) • Variation 1 (minor sixth and half diminished chords) • Variation 2 (altering the figure) • A variation that works over diminished 7th chords • Exercise: putting it into practice in a tune (rhythm changes)
Another 16th-note bebop phrase.
Includes three rhythmic variations on the original phrase (over a minor 7th chord) and versions that work over Phrygian and diminished 7th chords.
A collection of bebop licks over ii-V7-I cadences in the major key.
ii-V7-I in: F major (198bpm) • F major (140bpm) • F major (200bpm) • E major (184bpm) • B flat major (236bpm) • E flat major (190bpm) • E flat major (Keith Jarrett) (164bpm)
Bebop licks: ii-V7-i (2-5-1): minor key
Some bebop licks for ii-V7-i cadences/chord progressions in the minor key, where the ii is a half-diminished (or minor 7 flat 5) chord.
ii-V7-I in: D minor (184bpm) ✕ 2 • B minor (184bpm) • E minor (190bpm) • G minor (190bpm; lick from Keith Jarrett playing ‘Stella…’) • A minor (147bpm) • C minor (189bpm; lick from Bill Evans’ ‘Bill’s Hit Tune’) • A note about scales and chords
A collection of blues licks for piano (electric or acoustic).
Blues lick 1 (F major, 120bpm) • Blues lick 2 (B minor/major, 120bpm) • Blues lick 3 (B flat major, 121bpm) • Blues lick 4 (F major, 120bpm) • Blues lick 5 (F minor, 114bpm) • Blues/rock ’n’ roll lick 6 (D major, 119bpm) • Suggested listening
Blues licks for piano 2
SevenEight more blues licks.
Blues lick 7 (B minor/major, 120bpm) • Blues lick 8 (Eb minor/major, 140bpm) • Blues lick 9 (A minor, 120bpm) • Blues lick 10 (E major, 131bpm) • Blues lick 11 (F minor, 127bpm) • Blues lick 12 (D minor, 145bpm) • Blues/rock ’n’ roll lick 13 (E flat major, 158bpm) • Blues lick 14: blues ending (B flat major, 91bpm)
Bonus: general guidance
A bonus post, with some thoughts and opinions on playing jazz. YMMV.
Not a sprint • Certainly a mystery • Scales and technical exercises • Record yourself • Practising improvisation • Performance anxiety • Sound issues: A cacophonous environment; Bad pianos; Acoustic pianos in an amplified environment (or where there’s a loud drummer) • Context switching and moving between different genres of music
A slow funk groove built around a ‘4-3’ bluesy double-stop.
Includes an additional section, ‘Jamming on the fly: creating your own grooves’, demonstrating how to begin improvising your own grooves by starting simple. Mute my keyboard to jam along with the drums yourself.