Advanced Reharmonization – Part 2 of 2

In Part 1 of our article on advanced reharmonization we discussed two tips for understanding how to get started with chord substitution. Here in Part 2 we’ll go further with some study of advanced reharmonization using Gershwin’s “Summertime” by discussing some common chord progressions as well as the idea of tritone substitutions. Advanced Reharmonization Tip…

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Advanced Reharmonization – Part 1of 2

Advanced reharmonization is fancy jazz-speak for expressing a pretty simple idea – changing the chords. Yeah, that’s it. Advanced reharmonization just simply means that we’re going to take the original chords to a song and change them to something different. So what about that is “advanced”? Well, we don’t want to just randomly select different…

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Gig Tips for Pianists – Part 2 of 2

In Part 1 of our article “Gig Tips for Pianists” we discussed some very important aspects of gigging, including where to find gigs, selecting repertoire, and general etiquette pointers. Here we’ll discuss some more gig tips that cover a range of topics. Gig Tips #4: Gear Gear – meaning keyboards, synths, controllers, amps, all that…

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Gig Tips for Pianists – Part 1 of 2

This article is going to focus on a variety of gig tips for musicians, but primarily pianists. Over the years I’ve gotten many different questions from students and advancing musicians about gigging, being a professional musician, music business, and the ins-and-outs of finding work and performing. I’ll attempt to answer some of those questions here.…

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Learn to Play Stride Piano – Part 2 of 2

In Part 1 of this “Learn to Play Stride Piano” article we focused on Phase 1 and Phase 2 of our stride piano approaches. These phases were meant to introduce one element of stride piano at a time in a way that gradually increases the level of difficulty. By working through these phases, you can…

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Learn to Play Stride Piano – Part 1 of 2

Stride piano is a popular style of piano playing in which the left hand acts as a complete rhythm section. Sometimes described as an “oom-pah” style of playing, stride piano requires that the left hand play the role of timekeeper, bass player, and chordal accompaniment all at once. This is an understandably advanced concept to…

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Rootless Voicings at the Piano

Rootless voicings are an essential part of the jazz pianist’s vocabulary. They are used extensively for left hand comping and are also applicable when writing and arranging for other instruments. Understanding and being able to play rootless voicings is a big part of achieving that advanced, professional sound of the great jazz players. In this…

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How to Play Walking Bass Lines at the Piano

In this article we’re going to focus on a few specific things that you can practice to help you play walking bass lines at the piano. Walking bass lines are a very specific and classic jazz piano sound and generally considered an advanced concept. But the truth is that walking bass lines are fairly easy…

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Improvisation Practice Tips – Part 2 of 2

In Part 1 of our article “Improvisation Practice Tips,” we looked at three tips which featured exercises meant to help you quickly identify chord tones and scale degrees. It is intended that you master those exercises before continuing with the more advanced exercises presented here. The exercises below are also meant to be practiced sequentially,…

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Improvisation Practice Tips – Part 1 of 2

Improvisation practice goes hand-in-hand with the study of jazz music. Think of it this way – when Beethoven wrote music for his orchestra to play, he wrote down every note, every rhythm, every dynamic fluctuation, every detail for his musicians to play. But when Duke Ellington or Count Basie wrote music for their bands, they…

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