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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
Riddler #1476333 07/17/10 11:31 PM
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Ed, thanks for upping that to 45,000 reads! smile You must not do anything else...LOL.

BTW - I can't even keep track of how many times your PDF compilation has been downloaded. Thanks to you.


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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1476882 07/19/10 05:43 AM
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Cross posted from teacher's forum: I found this website which has links to master classes on Eric Dolphy, Charlie Parker, Bruce Hornsby, Keith Jarrett, Frank Zappa. I've had a little look, and there's nice discussion of the phrasing, and of how jazz developed. It's interesting.


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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
ten left thumbs #1476898 07/19/10 06:36 AM
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Cool, the classes on Charlie Parker and Frank Zappa in particular give very useful pointers for composition/improv.

Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
custard apple #1477162 07/19/10 03:09 PM
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Talking about two handed voicings or the idea of ten-fingers (instead of two hands), watch Barry Harris play here.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OahTuixsvrM

He says the piano is "Horizontal" not "Vertical". This is why I think it is important to approach the piano with a multi-octave, multi-register kind of thinking and start approaching playing by creating this rich texture.

As you get more advanced, you start experimenting with these stretched chords and you begin to create your own. Due to a change in overtones, often changing what goes in the bass note changes the entire sound.

For example, in the first few seconds, Barry was demonstrating a chord that looked almost exactly like a BbMaj7 chord like we discuss here (two handed), except he added an 11th (so it looked like a BbMaj7(11).

Apparently he was playing a C7Alt. Amazing because the b7 was the very low note. Voicings are interesting stuff. After awhile, you throw the instructions away and you experiment.



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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1477578 07/20/10 02:30 AM
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Thank you JW ! You’re right – this vid illustrates real well how thinking horizontally can help you enrich texture.
At 3:17 I can now see how these multi-finger voicings can be used to create a melody.

I’m looking forward to the day when I can just shut myself up in a room like Bill Evans and experiment with voicings.
In the meantime I’ve almost automated “Creating a maj 7 chord”.

Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
custard apple #1477784 07/20/10 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by custard apple
In the meantime I’ve almost automated “Creating a maj 7 chord”.


Remember, once you've got the Major 7 Chord, it doesn't take much brain power to make a min 7 chord (move RH down a Half step).

Two handed voicings are seldom discussed on the internet. This is the real way to play guys. It's also discussed in Levine's book and Metphors for a Musician if you think I'm dreaming this up.

All I've done here is visualize it a little differently (in my own flavor).


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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1478166 07/20/10 10:27 PM
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I can't even play that first chord he shows, Bb C / D A Eb ....he's using his 4th and not even the pinky!

My hands aren't that big so I never play anything above a 7th for 1 hand.

Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
Wizard of Oz #1478218 07/20/10 11:55 PM
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Wow - you and TLT have small hands...

But you can take that into considerationa and learn a new technique and that is to create rhythmic interest by splitting each hand into two sets of shapes.

This is something I was doing because I was playing Falling Grace with a latin beat. On beat 1 I play just the root and the melody, then you pedal and all the fingers jump into the middle voices. Then you can reach everything. If you do the middle voices really softly it's really neat sounding.

Unfortunately, I cannot record to demonstrate as my computer is down. I'm doing this on a borrowed computer.

If my posts get spotty for a week or so, please don't think I've abandoned all of you. I have a more serious problem of trying to recover all my data on a computer I can't restart.


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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1478282 07/21/10 03:00 AM
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And even if you have big hands, I think it might sound nice at times to just play the root first (before playing the middle voices) if you want to emphasise the root, especially if you are doing a solo without a bass player.

Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
custard apple #1478568 07/21/10 03:14 PM
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But what I didn't emphasize is the rhythmic aspect. I don't mean hit the pedal and jump to middle voices in two steps. When done by some really good players, they actually play a little rhythmic pattern on the middle voice like hitting it more than once per bar. Hard to explain until I can record.



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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1480520 07/24/10 12:49 PM
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Last night I was watching a DVD NYU masterclass from Barry Harris. I got it from Netflix after being exposed to his videos on Youtube. Fantastic stuff! His understanding of rhythm and harmony is very sophisticated. In some cases he doesn't fully explain (because there isn't enough time).

Some of this probably requires watching multiple times to fully comprehend. This is such a fraction of what's available from this guy, and he's in his 80's.

If I lived in NY, I'd attend his classes there.

Some interesting snippets include: when playing ballads, think in 6, not 4/4. And discussions of Whole Tone Scales and it's connection to diminished scales and how that applies to dominants that are "brother and sister". Phrasing comments.

And just fabulous playing overall both of ballads and bebop.


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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1480915 07/24/10 11:45 PM
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Sounds interesting. Re ballads, is the intention to create a waltzy feel ?

Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
custard apple #1481110 07/25/10 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by custard apple
Sounds interesting. Re ballads, is the intention to create a waltzy feel ?


This is a play on 2 against 3 beats and seems to be done all the time. When you play a waltz, you counter it with a 2 beat pattern to make it swing. I guess here's the reverse. Thinking in six, he says affects phrasing because a lot of normal English conversation is in triplets.

How-do-you Do (Tri-p-let One)
Where-did-you Go

This was something I started to know instinctively but wasn't certain. But this is how he wanted us to think for the soloist and even the singer. The rhythm section still plays in regular 4/4 so this is a counter rhythm.

This is like getting permission to play ballads with triplet 16ths as the main driving rhythm (vs. eighth notes for medium swing).

This is why it's an important practice to go from quarter notes to triplet 32nds in Ballad mode. Hard to execute though.


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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1481115 07/25/10 12:02 PM
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There's an interesting concept here related to bringing the tempo to some middle level all the time. For ballads, concentrating on triplet sixteenths brings the tempo up (cut time feel). For fast tunes, they bring the tempo feel down by doing half time feel (counting in twos rather than in 4's).

He said in the old days, this made Jazz danceable even with playing Cherokee at a fast tempo or playing a ballad. As you know, playing notes at medium swing allows you to swing those notes (be it quarter, triplet, or eighths). It's impossible to swing well when the notes are too fast or too slow.

The discussion was interesting because he was focused on rhythm. He says rhythm is king. The rest of it is just Classical music. Barry says the best and oldest Jazz musician is Bach.

Then from Bach, he went into the music theory stuff about diminished scales.



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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1481399 07/25/10 08:06 PM
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I didn’t realise that the English language is in threes. He’s right. So is Italian – Buongiorno, arrivare.
I agree that rhythm is king. I think that knowing drums would help. That’s one reason why I think Keith Jarrett was so good at rhythm. As beeboss mentioned, the Keith Jarrett recording of Bach’s Well Tempered Clavier is very good. When I listen to it, I feel the rhythmic drive/ tempo.
Dave Brubeck was good at switching from ¾ to 2/4 then back to ¾. I am nowhere near this stage.
What’s an example of swinging in triplets ? Is it like dragging the first of the three notes/ delaying the second of the three notes ?

Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
custard apple #1481466 07/25/10 10:34 PM
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BTW correction - when I said Ballads in 6, that's actually triplet eights.

Custard, you don't specifically swing triplets. But if you play a waltz and you play 16ths (which is two beats per eighth), then you can swing it. The idea of 3 against 2 is more of a counter rhythm thing rather than specifically swinging triplets. The 4/4 pulse can still swing as before. These are pretty hard concepts and I can't necesarily grasp all this either. Sometimes the feel just comes and I'm unable to intellectualize.

Looking again at a waltz. Here's another look at it. The main pulse is 3/4. But the counter-rhythm is 2/4. Listen to a lot of Waltz and you'll here the counter rhythm of 2/4. Very Early as discussed in the advanced thread is full of it because the melody is actually in 2/4.

Tunes like Windows, Someday My Prince Will Come has strong 2/4 feel, and you can swing the 2/4. So there are multiple places to swing whenever there are pairs of something. There has to be a pair though. That's why quarter notes in 3/4 can't swing. But you can swing the eighth notes.

This took me a long time to absorb (3 against 2). Probably a year of playing waltzes. It just didn't come naturally. Now it's funny that Barry Harris actually says to turn the 4/4 into a slow 6/4. Looks like the study of waltzes became really handy smile






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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1481477 07/25/10 10:45 PM
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One more comment on the lesson -- On two handed comping while playing the melody -- It's really hard to do this legato. You really need a lot of hand strength, especially with 4/5 finger. I hate Hanon but I actually did a lot of Hanon these past few weeks. I imagine this would be an occasional thing though...

Anyone trying those lessons out yet? I'm telling you, it's pretty important in jazz playing. If in doubt, watch that same Barry Harris video that I got from Netflix. Everything Barry does is with two hands.


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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1481545 07/26/10 02:09 AM
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OK JW thanks for clarifying. I think I now understand better. So for swing, you’re talking about three pairs of eighth notes per measure ?
As Knotty said, two handed voicings are commonly used by Bill Evans. I can hear it clearly in Bill Evans’ Here’s that Rainy Day.

Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
custard apple #1481561 07/26/10 03:15 AM
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Custard, yes, any pair of eights. Actually that's not even accurate. It depends on the tempo. On a ballad, the pair could be sixteenths. There's a narrow window of time that can be typically swung, let's say the equivalent of 100bpm to 180bpm in eighth notes.

On two handed voicings, I would say any jazz musician playing solo piano would be required to play two handed. And in a combo, there are some that didn't (way back when) but I would say that it is an expected skill. Besides, it just sounds better.

BTW - I play the head of Giant steps with two hands. It really helps when soloing because your hands just gravitate to the correct shape for soloing this way.




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Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee #1500280 08/21/10 03:55 AM
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Hello,

First of all, what a great study group this is, and what a great lessons it contains! Jazzwee and all the others you guys have put and are still putting a lot of effort in here and I really really appreciate that. smile

I've made it to lesson 3 now without a lot of trouble, but I always like listening to music I want to learn. How do you guys think of Nat King Cole as for listening to? I don't like all his music, but some of them I really love.

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