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#955696 - 09/18/04 03:12 PM New to Jazz  
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 8
Tim L Offline
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Tim L  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 8
California Baby!!
hi everyone! well i have a question to all those jazz experts out there...how do you play jazz!! i have played about 9 years of classical music and it's time to try something new. i have heard some cds of jazz pianst and i want to try it. so if you could give me some advice or names of pieces to try that would be just great. thanx


-the mind of Tim
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#955697 - 09/18/04 03:49 PM Re: New to Jazz  
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jazpianizt Offline
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#955698 - 09/20/04 05:21 AM Re: New to Jazz  
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NeoDavinci Offline
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NeoDavinci  Offline
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Oklahoma
Find jazz recordings you like, use something to slow them way down, and start transcribing. The simpler, the better at first. smile
Mark

#955699 - 09/21/04 12:17 AM Re: New to Jazz  
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WCSMinorCircuit Offline
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WCSMinorCircuit  Offline
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California
some good things to start out with would be dave brubeck stuff like blue rondo alla turca or take five, or my personal favorites by him, unsquare dance and bossa nova usa. Be careful with dave though, because his counting in his songs is a bit weird. Also try April in Paris by Thelonious Monk. That's just really fun to play, for me at least.

You play jazz by an understanding of theory. And then you forget all of that and just learn a basic theme and improvise like there's no tomorrow. Just have a good ear. Jazz really has no rules, so play around as much as you like and use weird counting, because at timse it can be really interesting.

find any song and memorize the theme and then try to see how much you can improvise on it. It really helps.


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#955700 - 09/21/04 06:43 AM Re: New to Jazz  
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mound Offline
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mound  Offline
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Rochester, NY
I have a ways to go before I will call myself a proficient jazz player.. but I absolutely understand what it will take for me to get there. But JosephS is right when he says that "you play jazz by an understanding of theory". You said
Quote
so if you could give me some advice or names of pieces to try that would be just great.
There are thousands of jazz "pieces" out there, check out a Real Book. but you won't find (and if you do it's purely for pedagogical purposes) "sheet music" for jazz pieces, with all the notes written out for you to learn, note by note, like you would a classical piece. You'll generally see chord charts that simply list the progression, maybe a rhythmic figure or a bit of the melody, but that's it. it really is about improvisation within a structure, and listening to the other players, which requires a thorough, backward and forward and inside out understanding of chord and harmony theory.. Which, as JosephS said, you then forget all about and just play.

I'm currently working with This Book

edit- also, I'll also agree with what NeoDavinci said about transcribing your favorite jazz pieces. While possibly tedious and time consuming, it can be an enormously beneficial learning experience to do so.

-Paul


"You look hopefully for an idea and then you're humble when you find it and you wish your skills were better. To have even a half-baked touch of creativity is an honor."
-- Ernie Stires, composer
#955701 - 09/21/04 06:58 AM Re: New to Jazz  
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NeoDavinci Offline
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NeoDavinci  Offline
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Oklahoma
While we're recommending theory books, The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine is hands down my favorite.
<a href> http://www.marklevine.com/books.html </href>

Mark (but not Levine) smile

#955702 - 09/21/04 07:16 AM Re: New to Jazz  
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 194
MikeMcf31 Offline
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MikeMcf31  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 194
Northern NJ
This site would be great for you

http://www.learnjazzpiano.com/citadel/scotcit.mvc


Also, JosephS. etal, I have some Brubek transcriptions including ronda alla turca.. if you are interested in any of it I have it scanned, send me an email at
mmcfadden@clarendon-ins.com and i'll shoot you a copy.
Mike

#955703 - 09/21/04 07:28 AM Re: New to Jazz  
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,820
SteveY Offline
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SteveY  Offline
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NJ
Quote
Jazz really has no rules, so play around as much as you like and use weird counting, because at timse it can be really interesting.
I guess all those years of music school were a waste...


PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...
#955704 - 09/21/04 07:34 AM Re: New to Jazz  
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jazpianizt Offline
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jazpianizt  Offline
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Quote
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Jazz really has no rules, so play around as much as you like and use weird counting, because at timse it can be really interesting.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I guess all those years of music school were a waste...
laugh laugh laugh

#955705 - 09/21/04 07:21 PM Re: New to Jazz  
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,124
WCSMinorCircuit Offline
1000 Post Club Member
WCSMinorCircuit  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,124
California
you know what I meant.

it's a buddhist philosophy. "Find the way, know the way, leave the way." no, it's taoist. but regardless, after a while all those lessons kind of just merge into one and piano becomes very natural to you that you don't have to remember all those years of lessons.

I wouldn't had been in lessons for so long if that wasn't the case. You have to learn somewhere.


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#955706 - 09/22/04 07:08 AM Re: New to Jazz  
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 1,464
Stanza Offline
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Stanza  Offline
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Chapel Hill, NC
I am no jazz player, but am starting to study it. My take jazz playing is kind of like "soul" singing, i.e. it is ok to wander around a bit, as long as you get back "home" from time to time. Start with progressions in sevenths, especially the ii-V-I with the majors being M7ths not dom7ths for a jazzier sound. To this eventually add "extensions" like the 9th and 13th, etc. I think it has to do with harmonics, so that lets say you are in the key of "C". If you play middle C and the next D, it sounds dissonant. But move the D up and octave and it becomes a "9th" which is cool. Basically, there are no "wrong" notes. If you play something that seems odd or wrong, just come back to it again a couple of time and it will seem right! Do a google for "Jamie Abersold" to find play along books and CDs.


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#955707 - 09/26/04 02:02 AM Re: New to Jazz  
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 776
neciebugs Offline
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neciebugs  Offline
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Joined: May 2004
Posts: 776
Chula Vista
Ahhh... to play jazz... My best friend is an awesome professional jazz pianist... He is just finishing up his second solo cd... I wish i lived closer to him so he can help teach me. I have soo many books on jazz and jazz theory... and he laughs at me. He has been playing on the circuit since he was 14 and is now in his late 20's. BUT he is also an amazing classical pianist, very well rounded!

His advice to me was LISTEN... LISTEN... LISTEN... DIGEST what you hear.... and reproduce by transcription or feel... and go with it. This sounds rather ultra simplistic... and after a year of his mentorship... I still cant play very well... but... I can improvise a lot better...

There are no rules.


Denise
2005 Schulze Pollmann 126/e Classico Upright (Maple with Sunburst inlay)
1965 Baldwin Model L 6'3" Grand (Satin Black)
#955708 - 09/26/04 02:15 PM Re: New to Jazz  
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 10
alfredo Offline
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alfredo  Offline
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Here is a wrong note even in jazz:
Play a C major 7 chord in the left hand and play a F natural whole note in the right hand.

#955709 - 09/26/04 02:16 PM Re: New to Jazz  
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alfredo Offline
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alfredo  Offline
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I prefer "Metaphors For The Musician" by jazz pianist Randy Halberstadt over the Levine book.

Also, "Stylistic II/V7/I VOICINGS for KEYBOARDISTS" by Luke Gillespie is much more complete for learning voicings than the Levine book.

#955710 - 09/26/04 03:17 PM Re: New to Jazz  
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 931
Ed Offline
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Ed  Offline
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Posts: 931
Pensacola, FL
There are plenty of "rules" in jazz. Otherwise, how could Mark Levine, or anyone else, write a book about it. Examples: use 4ths rarely. As Stanza posted, use 7ths, 9ths, and 13ths frequently. Some voicings work better than others.

I suspect that the accomplished jazz musicians have incorporated the rules so thoroughly that they have become intuitive, so when the question "how do you play jazz," is asked casually of a jazz musician, the rules don't come to mind. So the casual answer one gets is, "there are no rules." But just try playing jazz without rules and see if it sounds like jazz.

#955711 - 09/26/04 03:20 PM Re: New to Jazz  
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 388
ProPianoGuyBC Offline
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ProPianoGuyBC  Offline
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Big Oscar Peterson fan here! Night Train is worth a look.

#955712 - 09/27/04 01:42 AM Re: New to Jazz  
Joined: May 2004
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neciebugs Offline
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neciebugs  Offline
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Joined: May 2004
Posts: 776
Chula Vista
Ed,
You are right... i suppose what i meant by no rules is improvising within the structure (ie: rules) otherwise you wouldnt find a solo where the improv takes you to a completely other song and then back to the original song. I love how jazz is always full of suprizes for the ear.


Denise
2005 Schulze Pollmann 126/e Classico Upright (Maple with Sunburst inlay)
1965 Baldwin Model L 6'3" Grand (Satin Black)

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