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Joined: May 2001
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The style sometimes used by Bill Evans where both hands play close together near the center of the keyboard for an extended period.

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Texture by Milt Buckner and George Shearing - block chords.

Last edited by Nahum; 07/27/21 12:20 AM.
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Hi

The style that Nahum refers to is normally called Locked Hands, where the melody or solo is played with both hands in one large chord with the outer notes forming an octave.

Cheers

Simon


Simon

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In my original post I was thinking of playing like this:

Is that the locked hands or blocked chords style a few posters have referred to? My understanding of those terms was different than the playing in this video, but I don't claim to be any kind of expert.

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If you're referring to the first few measures of Foolish Heart, it is not an example of locked hands/block chords because the chords are all being playing in one hand. Locked hands refers to the technique of playing chords in both hands where both hands play at the exact same time. Or put another way, the rhythm in both hands is identical.

In your original post you correctly noted that this is frequently done near the center of the keyboard. This is more a matter of taste in that you are playing a lot of notes and it would be difficult to make that sound good in very low or very high registers.

There are different voicings that can be used. George Shearing tended to play a bock chord in the right hand and double the top note in the left. Red Garland tended to play the melody in octaves in the right hand and a chord in the left. Others use drop 2 voicings.

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Originally Posted by jjo
If you're referring to the first few measures of Foolish Heart, it is not an example of locked hands/block chords because the chords are all being playing in one hand. Locked hands refers to the technique of playing chords in both hands where both hands play at the exact same time. Or put another way, the rhythm in both hands is identical.
I was referring to the measures directly after the intro starting in measure 3. Mostly a single note melody with occasional chords in the RH and chords in the LH with the hands mostly close together near the center of the keyboard.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 07/27/21 10:50 AM.
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He is playing in a sweetspot style.

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After the intro, it is just basic jazz playing; there is no particular name. When you have a bass and drums, most players tend to keep their hands pretty close together. Evans is also using rootless voicings in the left hand, as he usually does.

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Intro: right plays a line in parallel 3rds with a couple triads thrown in. Typical Evans.

Thereafter, as dire tonic said, he plays his left hand as an accompaniment, to his single note melodies in the right hand, with mostly LH rootless voiceings.


Technical Editor for Mark Levine's The Jazz Theory Book and worked on The Jazz Piano Book. Studied with: Mark Levine & Mark Isham (1981-1990); Barry Harris (1993-2000)

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