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  1. #101

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    actually, eec did a lovely cover of one of his pops great tunes



    & neneh cherry is his daughter...she recently cut some stuff with a pretty "out" scandinavian trio

    (despite the seemingly bored crowd!! haha)



    had the pleasure of seeing don cherry around a few times..one of the greats

    talk about free improvising!!..thats what he was

    cheers

  2.  

    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #102

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    Just thought I'd share this VERY interesting, Bruce emailed the link to me after a series of exchanges where I told him I was getting worse at the one note stuff. I had a break through today where I started to hear D# rather than Eb, I know it's the same note but it was all about HOW I was hearing it, things are changing and I'm EXCITED. I owe you Alex!

    http://www.treygunn.com/blog/2015/10...he-breath.html

  4. #103

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    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    but this is definitely NOT the Bruce Arnold Method. Arnold got all this stuff from Charlie Banacos (along with all his approach note stuff).

    Yes, he is pretty clear about that. I call it the Bruce Method because that's who I learned it from. Bruce also studied with Bergonzi and a classical pianist as well. He is a good guy, or he wouldn't have allowed me to continue my studies... let's just say I was stupid in the past
    an Albert King lick doesn't become a Stevie Ray Vaughan lick just because Stevie was the first time you​ heard it

  5. #104
    I'm glad that many people got something out of this thread. However, I may ask the head of the website to remove this thread. Although I think a lot of good came from this thread, I could see how this thread could cause harm.

    Thanks for listening, peeps

  6. #105

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    Quote Originally Posted by 55bar View Post
    Just thought I'd share this VERY interesting, Bruce emailed the link to me after a series of exchanges where I told him I was getting worse at the one note stuff. I had a break through today where I started to hear D# rather than Eb, I know it's the same note but it was all about HOW I was hearing it, things are changing and I'm EXCITED. I owe you Alex!

    Trey Gunn - Blog - Inner Hearing, Micro-twitches and the Breath
    I very much enjoyed reading your blog (I take it's yours?) bearing in mind what you said I am revisiting the One Note Exercise.

    I am also having fun solfeging up melodies with respect to one key centre. It is hard to hear when the chords change sometimes isn't it? With this in mind I will probably email Bruce for suggestions when I get back from my travels. I think the exercises you mentioned sound like they address these aspects.

  7. #106
    I started the blog, but it is really everyone's who contributed. I am scared to ask Bruce to check out this thread, because although we have a good teacher-student relationship, I am worried that he will be beyond upset that I shared some of the concepts that you need to buy courses to access. A lot of them are on his free FAQ...

    You know what, I'll ask him this weekend. I just don't want to get sued over this. I don't think he's the guy to do that to me, but I really should have asked before posting all this.

    I guess I was excited. I find something I love and I wanna share it, especially if it helps me achieve something in myself that I couldn't achieve before.

    That was the whole point of this thread.

    Not a sales pitch.

  8. #107
    I never studied with Charlie, but I know about his legacy.

    Bruce tells me stories about Charlie and I just sit and listen. The way he describes it is akin to Homer and the Odyssey. An epic poem of sorts.

    Bruce took this ideas and applied them to technology. So you can practice wherever you want. As a high school teacher, I need to find ways to cram practice time into my day. So yes, the concept is not Bruce's. But I wouldn't say Bruce found a way to make money off of Charlie (though making a living in music education never hurts, right?)

    Bruce found a way to make the studies more accessible to students, even if they weren't in a practice room. I practice these courses while driving, flying, in a subway car, on a walk, going to sleep, getting up, running to the deli, etc.

    The studies resonated with me. That's why I urge others to check them out. Daesin, do you live in NYC? It's hard to find peeps that know about Bruce... and Charlie...

    I was just annoyed because you didn't give me the context. Now I hear where you are coming from (all pun intended)


  9. #108
    I guess this thread is up for good...

    Friends don't let friends start threads without thinking...

    Just hope Bruce sees this as a way to introduce more people to Charlie Banaco's concepts and the materials therein

    Can't afford a lawsuit... too many expensives

  10. #109

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    Irez - pardon me for asking, but what are you looking to accomplish with this specific approach to ear training? I get the impression that you are a working jazz player / performer /student. Are your ears not yet 'trained'?

    This is not meant to be in any way facetious or provocative. I never specifically trained my ears taking a course or specific method of study. Just happened along the way for me. So why focus so intently on this area unless there are significant deficiencies? It's like spending a lot of money on multivitamins when you already eat a healthy diet. Is it worth it or necessary?

  11. #110

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    Irez - pardon me for asking, but what are you looking to accomplish with this specific approach to ear training? I get the impression that you are a working jazz player / performer /student. Are your ears not yet 'trained'?

    This is not meant to be in any way facetious or provocative. I never specifically trained my ears taking a course or specific method of study. Just happened along the way for me. So why focus so intently on this area unless there are significant deficiencies? It's like spending a lot of money on multivitamins when you already eat a healthy diet. Is it worth it or necessary?
    I'm not at all trying to answer for Irez here just give my own personal answer.

    I guess some people (me included) take longer to get their s**t together when it comes to ears, I spent years playing lines and licks without actually being able to hear the changes.

    I'm sure we all learn in different ways my friend at college got his ears together by using any tonic then on his way to lessons used car licence plates to sing intervals.

    If all this happens organically then great, some people just need to get specific, even Miles talks about ear training in certain interviews becoming a "scientist of sound" etc.

    I know by using the Banacos /Arnold teachings that I just find it hard to hear certain things so it's great for me to practice them especially when I can't get to a guitar

    Anyway again not trying to answer for Alex, just my 2 peneth

  12. #111
    I am a high school teacher who happens to be obsessed with music.

    Good question.

    I hope to reach a level where I can play anything anywhere with any person in any genre to the highest level possible. I want everything to be improvised and based in the musical moment. No preconceived voicings or chord progressions. Just my two ears and my brain.

    I want the guitar to what Segovia has said was "a set of binoculars looking through the wrong way"

    The guitar as a mini orchestra, symphony, sonic atmosphere creator.

    I want to immitate string sections, piano, brass sections, vocal choirs...

    The ear is always expanding.

    If you think that ear training is ever done than you don't know about Charlie Banaco's approach to ear training. You train your ear for as long as you train your hands.

    Learn to hear single notes, dyads, triads, 7th chords completely by ear

    Learn to hear metric modulation without counting

    Learn to hear 32 bar forms without taping your feet or snapping fingers

    Learn to hear true modulation

    Learn to sing in any key or tonal area, including diminished, augmented, and other hextonic configurations.

    Learn to use set theory to arrange a standard or write a new piece.

    Learn how to communicate with the audience and my band mates so true music can surface.

    Like I said before.

    I have 3 passions:

    1. Learning

    2. Music

    3. My Girlfriend

    A passion for me is a life long pursuit. Ear training combines the first two passions. My girlfriend keeps me strong and stable enough to pursue my other passions (she is the bedrock of it all)

    Make sense?

    Without ear training, IMHO, the guitar is just a piece of wood with strings attached.

    With ear training, the guitar becomes my vessel to express all of the beauty and hardship that I observe and live. 28 years on this earth, and I've still been through some real tough shit. I also met the woman of my life, she's the one.

    I want to use music to communicate what words fail to speak.
    Last edited by Irez87; 10-31-2015 at 12:11 PM.

  13. #112
    destinytot Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    I guess this thread is up for good...

    Friends don't let friends start threads without thinking...

    Just hope Bruce sees this as a way to introduce more people to Charlie Banaco's concepts and the materials therein

    Can't afford a lawsuit... too many expensives
    I've got enough value from the information here to make me watch Bruce Arnold on TrueFire and order the first book - and your enthusiasm is a credit to you (and to Bruce Arnold). Nice one!

  14. #113
    destinytot Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    Irez - pardon me for asking, but what are you looking to accomplish with this specific approach to ear training? I get the impression that you are a working jazz player / performer /student. Are your ears not yet 'trained'?

    This is not meant to be in any way facetious or provocative. I never specifically trained my ears taking a course or specific method of study. Just happened along the way for me. So why focus so intently on this area unless there are significant deficiencies? It's like spending a lot of money on multivitamins when you already eat a healthy diet. Is it worth it or necessary?
    Great question, Jay. I 'get' it, too - but I'm sure Irez can break it down.

    (But I'll reiterate an earlier - perhaps obvious - point, that the independent listening/hearing serves interactive listening/hearing. Easier said than done in the 'noise of the moment'.)

  15. #114

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    I don't disagree with your goals, but frankly, the best way to train your ears is to follow Joe Pass' immortal advice - learn tunes. I understand that developing the sensitivity to relative intervals (relative to the tonic and to the chord - tone colors like 9ths, 11ths, 13ths, etc) is important, but when you analyze the major and minor harmonic scales, it is not that complicated. Especially if you hear the most fundamental intervals that create tension or release in the harmonic context.

    I would stress that last point - one needs to hear intervals in their harmonic context so that they become second nature. For example I am so very fond of diminished chords and flat fifths. Because the are transitional chords as are the tones that characterize the chords. That is why I find specific "ear training exercises" to be unnecessary. Now, admittedly I've been playing over a half century at this point, and experience does count in this regard.

    I'm not questioning the ultimate goal so much as the path to get there. In any case if it rocks your world, so be it. Whatever works for you. I do like the idea of singing every day. I never, however, do that nonsense of 'singing the interval out loud' which I consider similar to "chanting the modes" - totally useless in my humble opinion. You have to feel it and hear it, not dissect it.

  16. #115
    Targuit,

    This method works for the most important person in my journey: ME

    Whatever works for you is whatever works for you.

    But telling me something is wrong when you don't know how I apply my studies is a little...

    naive...

    Nothing is a miracle pill

    Rome wasn't built in a day

    I use solfege to and my ear training studies to learn the tune

    Away from the guitar

    Away from the piano

    Relying on a simple cadence to sing through an entire jazz standard

    The musical mind should dictate what you play

    Your inner ear, if you will

    Not the guitar

    **washes hands**

    1. You don't know who I studied with

    2. You don't know what I studied before to build my foundation

    3. You've never seen me play in person

    I know you mean well, but I never asked for advice. I'm sharing what worked for me, because it might work for others. At this point I already have a clear path on how I will continue developing my ear. Thanks for the advice, I am sure just learning tunes worked great for you because it instilled context and form into your playing.

    However, I don't wanna use the guitar to learn how to improvise anymore.

    I want to use my ear to learn how to improvise

    The guitar just happens to be my vessel.


    That could be a very confusing concept to those that aren't on my path. But there are many musicians who approach the study of music this way. Try it before you knock it. You never know what you might learn If not, all good

    Play on, brotha
    Last edited by Irez87; 10-31-2015 at 04:03 PM.

  17. #116

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    Chill, my friend. I'm not criticizing your method, just trying to understand exactly what it entails and to what purpose. Are your reading skills refined or rough? Can you read an unfamiliar piece of sheet music and "hear it" in your mind?

    The funny thing is that there are only twelve notes in the Western chromatic scale in an octave. Just twelve. So the most complex music is still the product of arranging those twelve tones, allowing that you can extend into several octaves.

    I think I will google 'ear training' and try to find out just what it is you seek to accomplish and how.

  18. #117

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    Prehearing as you define it, however, would imply that you are playing a phrase or measures as if you were reading them off a page of notated classical music. Unless that is what you are doing, in practice the "prehearing" is more determining 'spontaneously' where you want to take your musical line. There is a degree of "where will I take this phrase", but it is more spontaneous than that, deriving from the interaction of the musical lines - playing off the melody, off the bass, the rhythm pattern. It involves listening and responding. Otherwise it would not be "jazz".

    What makes the difference between a beautiful sixteen measures of a coherent, incisive solo and random wanking in the aisles of GC? Experience, knowledge, instinct - chops. That you cannot buy or copy off a transcription of John Coltrane. Nor learn from ear training per se. That is the whole enchilada.

    Last edited by targuit; 11-01-2015 at 05:06 AM.

  19. #118
    So, how did Ed do this whole "improvised orchestra" thing?

    He had HUGE ears

    How did he get these huge ears? Probably from playing with a bunch of kick ass musicians, probably from listening to a bunch of records, maybe because he had a piano... That last bit... a piano?

    Why do I say piano? Well... many of his chords sound pianistic.

    Listen to this:



    Then listen to this:



    My point is that Ed uses many of the same mechanics that modern pianists used of the day. This set him apart from other guitarists. Remember that Jim Hall (the other master of all this comping and counter point) said that the only other guitarist that scared him was Ed Bickert. It was Jim and recommended Ed to Paul Desmond, when Paul went up to the land of square tires, fart jokes, and a lot of talk of boots (I love Canada, by the way).

    What are some of those mechanics?

    I will share as much as I can without getting in trouble with anyone

    1. Elusion - being deceptive with the pulse. Not being tied to the quarter note. Being syncopated. Using hemiola.

    Listen to Bill Evans here:




    2. small voicings. Listen to Bud Powell here:



    Shell voicings, and I am not talking about guide tone voicings (those are a little different)


    3. Moving partial voices around and playing into chords. Listen to Jim Hall here, his stuff with Art Farmer was always beautiful :



    Rhythmic and harmonic interplay... Beautiful

    4. LISTENING to the soloist and responding tastefully. Not going into a conversation with a list of demands. Comping the same way for every soloist is like starting a conversation with a list of demands. Think on that one.
    Last edited by Irez87; 11-01-2015 at 07:15 AM.

  20. #119
    Phrasing, as I have learned it, relates not so much to how we start a line of improvisation. The more important tidbit is how we end the phrase.

    Bruce taught this to me as long line rhythm, but this is not new at all or his concept.

    Here's the thing. Most music works on phrases. Phrases are usually constructed around 2 measure frameworks, 4 measure frameworks, 8 measure frameworks. Most music, not just jazz. I did a pod cast on this thread about this very phenomenon.

    Therefore, you can be in the musical moment, but you always want to be aware of where your phrase will end within that 2 measure, 4 measure, and 8 measure framework.

    This is why counting doesn't work when you start playing jazz at a very high level. If you have to tap your foot to keep time, you will be too caught up in the micro to be aware of the macro. Drummers now label this phenomenon as marcro time (as opposed to micro time).

    This concept of phrasing is also tied to comping. That's why Jim Hall sounds like Jim Hall, and Ed sounds like Ed. They both know how to manipulate harmony spontaneously within these phrase-al frameworks.

    Here is some of my own playing. It's not where I want it to be, but it is getting closer every day. This was the first time I played a ballad in this manner (I am the last guitarist on this take) :



    Check the 11:00 mark to hear me
    Last edited by Irez87; 11-01-2015 at 07:42 AM.

  21. #120
    By the way, I consider myself a musician, but not a professional musician. Just like many of you here, I have a day job, and I want to start a family. I teach high school Special Education. That job is extremely demanding of my time and energy. It is also a passion of mine.

    But...then again... so is music

    My passions in order of importance:

    1. My girlfriend

    2. My music

    3. My job

    Bruce Arnold's packaging of Banaco's concepts into Mp3s allows me to practice at the same level as Brad Mehldau while still putting money on the table. It wasn't easy, I am still learning from his courses 5 years later, but that's the thing, I am still learning. Ear is the hidden word in learning, cool huh ? Seriously, though, I am still expanding my inner ear.

    I hope my explanation wasn't too pedantic, but I had to do it. Not so much for you, more for everyone else who doubted me here. Difference with you Targuit, is that you offered to listen and have a dialogue.

    Thank you.
    Last edited by Irez87; 11-01-2015 at 07:36 AM.

  22. #121
    destinytot Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    Prehearing as you define it, however, would imply that you are playing a phrase or measures as if you were reading them off a page of notated classical music. Unless that is what you are doing, in practice the "prehearing" is more determining 'spontaneously' where you want to take your musical line. There is a degree of "where will I take this phrase", but it is more spontaneous than that, deriving from the interaction of the musical lines - playing off the melody, off the bass, the rhythm pattern. It involves listening and responding. Otherwise it would not be "jazz".

    What makes the difference between a beautiful sixteen measures of a coherent, incisive solo and random wanking in the aisles of GC? Experience, knowledge, instinct - chops. That you cannot buy or copy off a transcription of John Coltrane. Nor learn from ear training per se. That is the whole enchilada.
    I agree.

    I see a parallel with language acquisition (something I always lean on, as it works for me) as follows: developing phonological awareness and control benefits not beginners but those who are already competent users - it enables them to instantly decode fast connected sounds produced by unsympathetic interlocutors about unfamiliar abstractions.

    Every neighbourhood over here has its own wind, brass & percussion ensemble (part of the local Fallas associations, of which there's one on the block where I live), and I often hear them in chorus as they drill solfège of Spanish and Italian melody. Many of these young people take full advantage of ubiquitous 'jazz education' courses; I've heard some of them sing fast Parker and Coltrane solos in solfège - and I can't help but be impressed at witnessing that feat.

    But it's really a party trick. Although these players have the 'chops' to recite/chant those sounds, they can't conceive or create them - yet.

    They also lack sophistication (which is usually charming, but can be annoying and tiresome).

    On the other hand, many of them do acquire
    Experience, knowledge, instinct
    But many of these players sound the same. I suspect that the particular application of solfège to ear-training - for 'jazz' - is a contributing factor.

    Besides, at least a dozen 'names' have (independently) said to me that 'There's only one key'. I used to think that was just a cool-sounding way of saying they know music and their instrument thoroughly, but now I relate it to what Bruce Arnold says about referencing sounds - and to what Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote about self-reliance.

    Ear-training:"Ne te quaesiveris extra."
    Last edited by destinytot; 11-01-2015 at 09:14 AM. Reason: spelling

  23. #122
    destinytot Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Phrasing, as I have learned it, relates not so much to how we start a line of improvisation.
    Without wishing to contradict, the 'pre-phrasing' that characterises my musical heroes involves starting lines 'early'.

    EDIT By way of example, my own vocal phrasing - a conflation of influences:
    Last edited by destinytot; 11-01-2015 at 09:27 AM. Reason: addition

  24. #123

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    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Phrasing, as I have learned it, relates not so much to how we start a line of improvisation. The more important tidbit is how we end the phrase.

    Bruce taught this to me as long line rhythm, but this is not new at all or his concept.

    Here's the thing. Most music works on phrases. Phrases are usually constructed around 2 measure frameworks, 4 measure frameworks, 8 measure frameworks. Most music, not just jazz. I did a pod cast on this thread about this very phenomenon.

    Therefore, you can be in the musical moment, but you always want to be aware of where your phrase will end within that 2 measure, 4 measure, and 8 measure framework.

    This is why counting doesn't work when you start playing jazz at a very high level. If you have to tap your foot to keep time, you will be too caught up in the micro to be aware of the macro. Drummers now label this phenomenon as marcro time (as opposed to micro time).

    This concept of phrasing is also tied to comping. That's why Jim Hall sounds like Jim Hall, and Ed sounds like Ed. They both know how to manipulate harmony spontaneously within these phrase-al frameworks.

    Here is some of my own playing. It's not where I want it to be, but it is getting closer every day. This was the first time I played a ballad in this manner (I am the last guitarist on this take) :



    Check the 11:00 mark to hear me
    Hal galper has a lot of interesting things to say here check Bach to bebop

  25. #124

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    I think we are talking in a common language here. I appreciate the rapprochement, Alex. We all try to systematize our approach on fundamental principles to describe something that will always be beyond words to describe. But I agree with your comments about destinations with the phrase. I think it is not much where you start your phrase as where you intend to go with it - your destination. So much so, that when I improvise I focus on where I intend to go - some would call that 'target tones'. I also feel the rhythmic figures.

    I used to think that when you improvise, you have to mentally and / or vocally scat the line internally to have cohesiveness and logical development - I think that is true largely. But I don't think you have to scat the entire phrase but rather the destination point in the phrase. In other words to get from point A to point B which might be a measure or two apart, I tend to think of those points, allowing my subconscious to take me there.

    This gets me to an another dimension of improvisation from a scientific evidence based experiment. Some neurologists who are also musicians and interested in this whole question of improvisation, creativity and how musicians function created a special keyboard that could be used during MRI exam of the brain. (You cannot wear metal into an MRI device because the powerful magnets will rip it or you apart.) So they had experienced professional keyboard players improvise while undergoing MRI exams. The areas of the brain that were activated extensively were the same areas that are involved in the dream REM phase of sleep and nuclei that function when you narrate a story about yourself.

    When you dream, your subconscious often seems to impose an order to your dream elements, which may not be immediately obvious to you when awake. As a physician, my interpretation (which may be incorrect, of course) of the studies suggest that improvisers "dream" the music. That is, at some point they relax their critical Superego consciousness and allow their subconscious to take the wheel - to narrate the story, so to speak.

    I believe in this so much that I search for ways to channel that state of mind consistently. I think it is about trying to access that state like getting into the Flow, as the term goes. Flow state. Where the music seems to come through you as the vessel. But to get there paradoxically you have to surrender the wheel to your subconscious, which is kind of a courageous act, especially if you are on stage.

    This all ties into the comments by great improvisers like Sonny Rollins and others about those peak moments on stage when they attain that flow state of grace. Not every moment, not every night - but that is what they search for like addicts for their drugs. And all this ties into why we dedicate years of our life virtually to pursuing our musical fix as well as the spiritual aspect of playing.

    Anyway, I realize this all veers away from the focus of your thread, so I will desist in commenting. But I will try to link those studies for anyone interested in reading about them.

    http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...RdXVRkAxPVE85g



    http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...i0h87j76e3aOSw
    Last edited by targuit; 11-01-2015 at 10:42 AM.

  26. #125
    destinytot Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    I think it is not much where you start your phrase as where you intend to go with it - your destination. So much so, that when I improvise I focus on where I intend to go - some would call that 'target tones'.
    I'm intrigued to hear an example, Jay. Would you mind posting something improvised? If it isn't relevant or appropriate to post here, perhaps on another thread? I'd be grateful for a chance to hear it and would listen without judgement.

  27. #126
    This was on PBS a while ago:



    I find this stuff EXTREMELY interesting

    Thanks for raising the psychological aspect

    My dad is a doctor as well.

  28. #127
    Destiny, I already posted an example of phrasing with the end in mind under my phraseology pod cast.

    I know you listen to my stuff, but I feel like most people like to posit ego without discussing knowledge.

    I feel like this thread that I created, has turned into a place, for the most part, where the discussion is respected. That can only happen if people are respectful of the OP.

    Thanks all

  29. #128
    I want to hear jay's response, but destiny, you may wanna check out Bruce's Doing Time studies as they go into Lennie Tristano's long line rhythm idea:

    Developing a sense of time for musicians book with audioMuse EEK

    Developing a sense of time for musicians book with audioMuse EEK

    How to develop rhythm & timing for musicians book with audioMuse EEK

    These courses are great for internalizing time and becoming aware of phrase-al structure and line length

    I am still working out of these courses.

  30. #129

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    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    I never studied with Charlie, but I know about his legacy.

    Bruce tells me stories about Charlie and I just sit and listen. The way he describes it is akin to Homer and the Odyssey. An epic poem of sorts.

    Bruce took this ideas and applied them to technology. So you can practice wherever you want. As a high school teacher, I need to find ways to cram practice time into my day. So yes, the concept is not Bruce's. But I wouldn't say Bruce found a way to make money off of Charlie (though making a living in music education never hurts, right?)

    Bruce found a way to make the studies more accessible to students, even if they weren't in a practice room. I practice these courses while driving, flying, in a subway car, on a walk, going to sleep, getting up, running to the deli, etc.

    The studies resonated with me. That's why I urge others to check them out. Daesin, do you live in NYC? It's hard to find peeps that know about Bruce... and Charlie...

    I was just annoyed because you didn't give me the context. Now I hear where you are coming from (all pun intended)

    i do live in NYC now, but I wasn't at the time when I met Bruce or Charlie

    i'd be happy to talk about my experiences studying with Charlie. unfortunately because of his illness, i didn't get nearly as deep as i wanted to. some guys studied with him for 20+ years.

  31. #130

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    If you recall, we were talking about the concept of "prehearing" as important in improvisation. I always improvise any performance that I record. But I certainly know the song's melody and chord progression before I do so. My approach lately is to focus not on trying to scat a melody line solo, but rather to focus simply on the bass line of the tune. In effect I find that rather than consciously chart a melodic improvisation to the chord progression, I just listen and react to the changes as they flow by. As long as I'm not distracted from my reverie, wherever I am on the fret board positionally I can find the melody and harmony effectively. Not as something where I try to scat and play the identical notes so much as to listen and trust my subconscious to get me home - "home" in this case being my destination which is the next chord or way station in the song.

    I would add that thinking uniquely about the bass line renders everything relatively simple, because wherever I am in terms of fret position on the neck, if I am listening intently to the music, my subconscious "shows me the way", so to speak. It is like saying that with years of experience my inner mental voice has fused with my guitar playing so they are essentially one and the same. So I play with intention, but that intention is the result of listening to the music as the chord changes roll on by in the tune.

    This is all a play on not forcing myself consciously to follow a certain melodic and harmonic path so much as to "follow the yellow brick road" so to speak by listening to the musical voice and phrasing that my subconscious charts in response. This mindset is a bit difficult to describe because it is like a form of meditation where if 'intrusive thoughts' break your mindfulness, you repeat your mantra to banish the thoughts and restore that mindfulness. It is like being passive rather than active.

    Of course, without the endless hours of playing and practice for more than fifty years, I would not have the technical playing facility to play in this fashion. But by now my inner voice and what I play are in a sense fused as one. It is like saying that by now my playing is primarily limited by what I can imagine in the context of the song structure rather than execution. That is not to assert that the musical note choices and voicings are infinite, but that within the typical voicings and melodic phrasing of most Western music and in this case jazz styling, I can find my way in any fret position. So I'm not "thinking about" fingering a diminished chord or a minor seventh flat five chord in the progression - I just consider the bass line and wherever I am in terms of fret position on the neck my subconscious voices what it wants to hear musically. And in the flow of the music, I am more passively "listening" rather than actively plotting where I am going. I just need to be aware about where I am in the song progression in terms of the bass line and my subconscious and the mind body fusion execute what I hear in my mind.

    I have had this discussion more than once with Reg, who claims to always be "making decisions" in the microseconds as he plays. Well, sure you can decide to play a melody with a certain syncopation or style and can change tempo in mid-gear, but I think of that as less "active" and more a "reactive" response to the music. I don't so much hack a pathway in the musical jungle thicket as 'follow the path" charted by my subconscious which is orchestrating my dream.

    This is difficult to articulate without sounding abstruse. But I always remember an exchange I had with Robben Ford at a "music clinic" in a local music store back in the early Nineties. As usual these "clinics" were attended mostly by male guitarists who listened intently to Robben's talk and playing (to his backing tracks) of his next CD at the time. Robben, who played at one point with Miles Davis, interrupted his clinic thing to talk and take questions from his rapt audience. I asked him what he was thinking about as he plays his solos. Did he scat lines mentally or what? He responded that no, he did not so much scat the phrasing as "ride the emotional wave" of the music. An analogy to surfing. You can make adjustments to chart your course on a big wave crest bearing you towards the shore, but you cannot direct the wave - you have to ride it. Hopefully without wiping out.

    Anyway, to get back to musical examples of this approach, which I'm sure is not unique. Last Sunday I finally found the time to do some recording of songs that I am trying to polish for a demo CD to shop around for work. Although I closed my medical practice as of the end of September, I am still occupied copying paper charts for patients transferring to a new physician - an endless and mind numbing but essential job for now and probably for a couple of months. This obligation does not allow a lot of time to devote to recording at home lately. But I do want to get up more performances on my YT site. I like to record not only for the pleasure but as a way of monitoring my own progress. The tunes I was working on Sunday included But Beautiful, Here's That Rainy Day, and Stardust. Within the limits of my recording setup and equipment I'm working not only on the music but on the dynamics processing that sounds best. So I'll try to put up a tune or two as soon as I can.

  32. #131
    I'm gonna take some credit for this one, but just some

    I am glad that I setup the environment on this thread so that Jay could share that tidbit here without being immediately shot down like I was on other threads.

    Thanks destiny, 55, daesin, chris '77, and others for doing your part to create a space where a true dialogue on ear training could occur. A huge part of ear training is learning to listen to each other, and I think we are closer to that here than on any other thread.



    I think I agree with everything Jay said just now, but I wanna reread his post to be sure. I think I prepare in the same manner as well. Let me ruminate on it for a little. Anyone else wanna share a response? All I ask is that you read Jay's full response before commenting. There is A LOT to be discussed and learned from in JAy's response

  33. #132
    Yupe, just read Jay's post 3x to be sure. I agree 100% and my process is the same, but I just started playing this way, so I am glad to heard from someone who has at least 30 years of playing experience on me. Regardless, I am glad that I am following the same path as a more experienced improvisor. I often feel like people tell me that my approach is all wrong, but I trust Jay's judgement.

    I would write an equally long response, but Jay said most of it already and I don't want to be redundent.

    I can share HOW (font is messed up, not yelling, replace it with italics) I go about Jay's process of finding "the yellow bring road"



    MJ before he got totally messed up because his ugly childhood caught up with him, btw. Give the man some credit

    Well, my process (while listening to MJ for some inspiration) is to practice singing the changes starting with the bass movement. Chris '77 and I had shared our process of learning changes through scating the changes (I gotta record a scat over Giant Steps to prove another point)

    But what Jay is talking about is more important than singing changes.

    ...Jay, if I am incorrect in reading your response and misinterpreting your post, please correct me

    Jay is all about that bass, bout that bass, no treble...



    (I think she sings it better than Megan, plus she can actually play that bass )

    Bassline, lads and lasses, are the final frontier

    They give us the "yellow brick road" of pulse, rhythm, harmony, and melody.

    But just like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, the "yellow brick road" is sometimes hard to find.

    The bass occupies the lowest register of the band, so you have to train your ear to hear down low. The bass, unfortunately, is often crowed by egotists (including myself when I get too excited) who don't know how to BALANCE with the bass and the rest of the bandmates

    That, lads and lasses is the biggest crime on the band stand. Bigger than forgetting the melody, bigger than being an asshole and leaving the stand after your solo instead of contributing backgrounds or urging the rest of the band on (Cannonball knew how to work a band!)

    So I sing through the bass movement over and over and over, while listening to a low drone, so that I can hear the bass. I also ear train bass lines (but please work your way up to this course on muse-eek.com or it will be a waste of money and, more pricey than money, a waste of practice time)

    I do this ALL away from the guitar. Like I said, the guitar is now my vessel of communication. However, the message has to be loud and clear BEFORE I take it to the fret board because I want my musical imagination to dictate how I play, not some beautiful piece of wood (that sounds wrong, but whatever ) My girlfriend knows she is my "second girlfriend". My first is... my guitar...

    Hope that was at least a little accurate. Sorry for the length, I blame it on the video samples

    And riding the wave of emotion is what I am beginning to do as well. It takes a certain amount of bravey to switch off the critical process loop in the brain and let the ears and "heart" guide, but this is at the very core of learning how to tell a story: YOUR STORY, not Charlie Parker's story.

    **Drops the mic**
    Last edited by Irez87; 11-03-2015 at 07:18 AM.

  34. #133

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    I read Jay's post and I think my approach is quite similar. For example, when I do the 'practical standard' each month I learn the tune, then I comp though the changes a few times to get the sound of the chord progression in my head. When I record the tune, I tend to print out a chord chart and stick it on a stand in front of me. But then I find that if I look at it while playing, I have a 'train wreck' - all it does is distract me! So I always end up playing without looking at the chart, because in fact my ears will guide me much better. I'm not really thinking of the chords much as I play.

    I guess I've always been training my ears without realising it. When I started learning I had no 'fake books', so I used to listen for the bass note and work out the chords from there. As Joe Pass says, there are basically 3 chords, major, minor, dominant, so if you can hear the bass note and then identify which of these 3 types the chord is, you've got the basic chord. I used to write out loads of chord charts for standards this way.

    Similarly, when transcribing solos, or even just hearing a cool phrase on a record and wanting to figure it out, I found I could fairly quickly identify the note from the context. The way I looked at it, there are only 12 notes, and each one has its own character, so eventually I could tell them apart with practice. So a major 3rd has its own character (happy), minor 3rd has a different sound (sad), similarly a major 7th sounds different (sort of 'lush') compared to a flat 7th (sounds 'bluesy'), and so on. I have a similar 'character' for all 12 notes though it's hard to put some of them into words!

    I think I have always been an 'ear' player primarily, as I was never much good at reading music (I am somewhat better at it now!) I think I mentioned on another thread how during my classical guitar lessons at school, I could instantly pick something up if my teacher played it once. He thought I was sight-reading it, but I was really using my ears and memory far more than he realised.

    Sometimes I cannot rely on my ear alone, if a tune has some unusual or difficult changes, in which case I will do some analysis and work out some useful arpeggios and phrases to get me through that section. I don't really like doing this, but at least it means that I learn some new ideas which can hopefully be absorbed into the 'subconscious' for future use.

  35. #134

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    Thanks for the nice comments and reflections on my post! I think Grahambop and I work in a similar fashion, which is not surprising given that there are only so many ways to skin a cat, as they say. When I work on an unfamiliar new song, I find a good vocal version by Sarah Vaughn or other singer to get the melody and changes down. I make a copy of the lyrics and write in the chord changes above lyrics and run through a vocal plus solo guitar version.

    Joe Pass frequently commented in interviews how tried to simplify his approach. When asked about negotiating a ii m7- V7 change, Joe joked "what's that?", responding that in effect he simply thinks of the ii m7 as part of the V chord. That was what I was getting act when suggesting that I focus on the bass line of the chord progression when I'm playing if I need to negotiate a tricky chord passage. But I also find that my improvisations best evolve out of the contrast or interplay of a minimum of two voices in a song - the bass and melody. For example, if playing a solo chord melody version of a song like Body and Soul, obviously I play full chords or fragments incorporating the melody but when performing I'm thinking mostly about the bass off of which I play the harmonized melody wherever I need to be in terms of fret position on the neck. Not so much think about it as follow it. Incidentally, I like to follow a high melody voiced phrase with some inner voice movement - on the A, D, or G string, example. So I'm kind of dancing back and forth across the pitch spectrum of notes.

    None of this is ground-breaking or revolutionary. But a couple of other considerations. When I record or perform, I like to play with my eyes closed. It seems to help me focus. Often I can literally 'see' the notes as notation or at least 'architecture' in terms of the movement of the melody. But I try to just focus on listening, and that is where I think about playing off the bass line. I don't want to exaggerate this whole deal, but I do find that for me playing is always about the other referential lines in the song. In effect, if the song involves chord changes with diminished seventh or minor flat fifth chords, I don't think about them beyond the fundamental bass note. In other words, if the chord change involves a D dim7, I just think D though I play the important color tones without thinking about it. That is where the ear training comes in, I suppose.

    The other main thing is that I do try to 'distract' myself - the critical super ego self - using certain techniques to hopefully free up the creative side, which I definitely associate with the subconscious. This also goes along with playing with eyes closed. Of course, this is not essential, but I think I lay down better solos when I do it this way. Think the old cliché of a hypnotist getting you into a trance by telling you to stare at a candle or a swinging pendulum.

    Now I tried to fathom what was going on with this chord outlining challenge business. While I did listen to Mike's and Christian's clips, I have no idea what you were guys were playing. Maybe because I am so used to hearing the melody or outline in context with the bass. But it could also be that I just don't know the tune.

    So, Mike - explain what the 'rules' are here. Is it playing the melody alone to imply the harmony or something else? I have no clue here. When I play in practice or record, I often actually record as a scratch track just the melody in time as an exercise. But I think the rules of this game are different than that.

    Last word for now - I have a Dropbox account but I've never really used it! For some reason it looked a bit complicated to me when I first created the account. But I've been very distracted, so maybe it's just me. But that would be a good way to participate, I suppose.

  36. #135

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    Jay

    The idea of the outlining chords thing is to play an improvised solo line (not the actual melody) and see if people can recognise what the underlying tune is. If your solo encapsulates enough of the guide or chord tones (in the right places, obviously) of the underlying chord progression, it should be possible to recognise the tune. Of course this is harder with some tunes than others, or with some people's playing style, etc. And the listener needs to be fairly familiar with the changes of the tune in question.

  37. #136

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    Grahambop - I listened to Christian's dropbox recording and to Mike's and for the life of me I have no clue what they were playing. That is not a criticism of what they played - just an admission that I could not figure it out. Might just be my ignorance of the songs in question.

    If I made the rules, I would play through the improv first and then restate the melody. It might help to play to metronome so one can get a sense of the rhythm, though I suppose one should infer it. I note that it is all single note playing. I have a tune in mind to do, but it seems to me that even an improvisation should in some way relate to the melody and chords. If your improv is so far from the melody that you cannot relate where it came from, it would seem to me to defeat the purpose. I know Miles' thing about "Don't play the butter notes." I find that I actually play more 'abstractly' without stating the melody when I'm playing along with a singer handling the melody. Then you can riff off the harmony. My biggest problem is not overplaying.

    Did you pick out the tunes? Again, it could be that I don't know the songs...

    Btw, some of the references to Joe Pass's thinking I found in the complete video on YT of An Evening With Joe Pass. The entire video is a joy to me, but if time is limited, listening and watching from around 52 minute mark or so is where Joe expresses his ideas on how he approaches solos, chord melody, and substitutions.

    I hope I have not veered this thread off course. If so, I apologize in advance.

    Last edited by targuit; 11-03-2015 at 06:50 PM.

  38. #137

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    Grahambop - I listened to Christian's dropbox recording and to Mike's and for the life of me I have no clue what they were playing. If I made the rules, I would play through the improv first and then restate the melody. It might help to play to metronome so one can get a sense of the rhythm, though I suppose one should infer it. I note that it is all single note playing.

    Did you pick up the tunes? Again, it could be that I don't know the songs..
    No, I only got some of the earlier ones, not theirs. It's quite difficult. Maybe they were tunes I don't know very well.

  39. #138

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    Grahambop is one of the finer players on this forum in my modest estimation. I would love to have his sense of taste, coherence, and restraint. But I don't.

    For some reason I just like to listen to Joe Pass talk about music. I enjoy his sense of humor.

    Btw, I was just experimenting playing the tune I have in mind in the manner established, but in my opinion anyone that heard it would know what I was playing within ten seconds. This might sound odd, but I have a hard time getting too far away from the melody (to the point where someone would have a problem ID'ing the song). It is like it goes against my nature and my ears most of all.

    You know, when you post about your own experience, thoughts, and issues, it sounds as though you are making it "all about you". I don't intend that - I think we all struggle with common issues as well as our personal idiosyncrasies. But I just listen to Uncle Joe who says as he leaves the hall and not long after this earth - "Learn songs, guys! You'll never get laid just playing scales...."
    Last edited by targuit; 11-03-2015 at 07:16 PM.

  40. #139

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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop View Post
    No, I only got some of the earlier ones, not theirs. It's quite difficult. Maybe they were tunes I don't know very well.
    It took me a good listen to chris solo before I got it, I would be surprised if you had never played this tune, did you listen to the very end?

    I'd be interested to hear if you got the standard I put up too.

  41. #140

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    I was thinking about this "mystery song" thing and outlining the chords. I still don't really get it in a way, as I would think that if you are soloing over a standard that the object would be to be recognizable almost instantly. Maybe I'm not grokking the rules. But I have to say that I spent the night here playing through a set of standards with a starting principle of "the melody is king" but with the objective of outlining the chords via mostly single note playing. But from there I found myself unable to contain the urge to harmonize. Still, it was a great practice night. So I am grateful to the stimulus to pursue this angle to approach my set.

    I ran through the following songs. I chose the key in accord with my comfortable 'restaurant or bar level' vocal range and playability issue preferences as well. In the order I worked on the tunes.

    Georgia On My Mind in D. Body and Soul in Bb. My Foolish Heart in Bb. My Romance in Bb. Over the Rainbow in Bb. (hmmm....I sense a pattern here.) My Funny Valentine in Cm . Isn't It Romantic in C. All the Things You Are in Cm. Cry Me a River in Gm. Misty in C. And Laura in F and in Eb.

    I focused not only on the melody and harmony - probably breaking the rules of the game here - but also on tempo and syncopation variations. Bossa at times. Swing. It was a really productive practice. So even if I have the game down wrong, the outcome was fabulous. Thanks for the stimulus of the discussion.

  42. #141

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    I was thinking about this "mystery song" thing and outlining the chords. I still don't really get it in a way, as I would think that if you are soloing over a standard that the object would be to be recognizable almost instantly. Maybe I'm not grokking the rules. But I have to say that I spent the night here playing through a set of standards with a starting principle of "the melody is king" but with the objective of outlining the chords via mostly single note playing. But from there I found myself unable to contain the urge to harmonize. Still, it was a great practice night. So I am grateful to the stimulus to pursue this angle to approach my set.

    I ran through the following songs. I chose the key in accord with my comfortable 'restaurant or bar level' vocal range and playability issue preferences as well. In the order I worked on the tunes.

    Georgia On My Mind in D. Body and Soul in Bb. My Foolish Heart in Bb. My Romance in Bb. Over the Rainbow in Bb. (hmmm....I sense a pattern here.) My Funny Valentine in Cm . Isn't It Romantic in C. All the Things You Are in Cm. Cry Me a River in Gm. Misty in C. And Laura in F and in Eb.

    I focused not only on the melody and harmony - probably breaking the rules of the game here - but also on tempo and syncopation variations. Bossa at times. Swing. It was a really productive practice. So even if I have the game down wrong, the outcome was fabulous. Thanks for the stimulus of the discussion.
    You have made a good point here, as some standards share chord progressions like TWNBAY and A Weaver of Dreams so the melody would have and SHOULD play a huge factor in real time improvising.

    For me this is just a good platform to see if people can hear a chord progression whilst I'm playing single lines.

  43. #142
    Name this song:



    (it's in the title... dang)

    Here is another duo that gravitates towards beautiful abstraction:



    I love my music like I love my literature. Embrace the gray. The most advanced of creative endeavors, IMHO, whether in visual art, writing, or music, all have one share binding principle.

    They all embrace the GRAY. They pull at the seams that try to keep everything neat and tiddy and they rip those seams to threads.

    I can see how categorization and neatness can help in life, they help set boundaries.

    But we've also seen, some more others through out history, how categorization can systematize the humanity out of human beings.

    Yes, I believe that music is forever tied to the human condition. That is why I believe so strongly that playing jazz is more than playing changes.

    Ask Duke Ellington what playing music is about. Ask Bartok what music is about. Ask my man Max Roach what music is about (we share a birthday, and I wear that similarity with pride). Ask Shostakovich what music is about. Ask Charles Mingus what music is about. Ask Bob Dylan what music is about.

    Get what I'm saying, here?
    Last edited by Irez87; 11-05-2015 at 07:31 AM.

  44. #143

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    I get what you are saying here Alex, i think.

    If all art stuck to rigid boundaries it could have never progressed. One think to mention here is that as Picasso could paint amazingly accurate still life, so could hall and Zoller.. Et al play the hell out of rhythm changes. Is it not that by giving yourself strict boundaries in practice you are able to break them when the moment calls?
    Last edited by 55bar; 11-05-2015 at 07:50 AM.

  45. #144
    destinytot Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    I was thinking about this "mystery song" thing and outlining the chords. I still don't really get it in a way, as I would think that if you are soloing over a standard that the object would be to be recognizable almost instantly.
    This comment reminds me of the thread about Simplifying Jazz (about which, perhaps "now is the time for all Good Men to come to the aid of... etc.").

    Thankfully, it also clears up my curiosity.

    I think it's fine not to recognise the changes; I'd call that a 'learning objective' for the listener - it certainly is for me. Moreover, it's the objective of this singular thread.

    (By the way, Alex, have you read Emerson's Self-Reliance? "Each heart vibrates to that iron string." I owe a debt of gratitude to the wonderful Michael Steinman for recommending it to me.)

    And I'd say that the challenge of outlining the changes via unaccompanied improvised line is not to have the "mystery song" be 'instantly recognisable' to the listener; the challenge is for the player to communicate compelling musical ideas - coherently, and using organisational patterns with complete flexibility, sophistication and control - and hold the attention of an informed listener.

    I think your comment points to the line between entertainment and art. I don't think the exercise needs to involve the former - though I see no reason why performances of this music can't do both.

    Personally, I'm happy to 'run with the foxes and hunt with the hounds' with regard to the above. I'll take my cue from Mr Cash and 'Walk the Line'. But I think Earth, Wind & Fire put it best: "If you can't understand me, that's your problem!"

    PS To my mind, what the comment quoted describes is tantamount to a straight-jacket.
    Last edited by destinytot; 11-05-2015 at 07:52 AM. Reason: PS

  46. #145

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    Quote Originally Posted by destinytot View Post
    This comment reminds me of the thread about Simplifying Jazz (about which, perhaps "now is the time for all Good Men to come to the aid of... etc.").

    Thankfully, it also clears up my curiosity.

    I think it's fine not to recognise the changes; I'd call that a 'learning objective' for the listener - it certainly is for me. Moreover, it's the objective of this singular thread. ....

    And I'd say that the challenge of outlining the changes via unaccompanied improvised line is not to have the "mystery song" be 'instantly recognisable' to the listener; the challenge is for the player to communicate compelling musical ideas - coherently, and using organisational patterns with complete flexibility, sophistication and control - and hold the attention of an informed listener.

    PS To my mind, what the comment quoted describes is tantamount to a straight-jacket.
    I must have missed something. I assume, Mike, you are referring to my comment regarding playing an improvisation of a known but untitled song. Maybe I don't understand the objectives.

    What I am assuming (please correct me if I am wrong) are the following general objectives.

    - Pick a song, but do not reveal the title.
    - Play an "improvisation" that outlines the chord changes, primarily using single note phrases rather than double stops or chords.

    - Everyone else try to guess the song title.

    What is not clear to me is how close to articulating the melody you are permitted to go. I confess that on any of the songs I listed above that I worked on last night and there were several familiar standards, it is very hard for me not to improvise off the melody as I outline the chord changes. But if I do, you would know the song within a couple of bars.

    I know there are those like Charlie Parker who took familiar progressions and overlaid a "new" or different melody line - what is it called? Contrafait or something like that. That is one thing - after all, there are many songs with similar chord progressions. But if the basis of my improvisation is a standard with a familiar melody, I have a hard time "forgetting" the melody and just creating a new one, unless I were looking just at the chord changes. But the new song as improvised would not be the standard.

    Anyway, Mike, I'm not saying one cannot stray from the melody of a well known standard. But most improvisers suggest the melody elements in their solo. If not, it is not that particular standard, but something else. No? I'm not trying to straitjacket anyone. Please elaborate.

  47. #146

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    I must have missed something. I assume, Mike, you are referring to my comment regarding playing an improvisation of a known but untitled song. Maybe I don't understand the objectives.

    What I am assuming (please correct me if I am wrong) are the following general objectives.

    - Pick a song, but do not reveal the title.
    - Play an "improvisation" that outlines the chord changes, primarily using single note phrases rather than double stops or chords.

    - Everyone else try to guess the song title.

    What is not clear to me is how close to articulating the melody you are permitted to go. I confess that on any of the songs I listed above that I worked on last night and there were several familiar standards, it is very hard for me not to improvise off the melody as I outline the chord changes. But if I do, you would know the song within a couple of bars.

    I know there are those like Charlie Parker who took familiar progressions and overlaid a "new" or different melody line - what is it called? Contrafait or something like that. That is one thing - after all, there are many songs with similar chord progressions. But if the basis of my improvisation is a standard with a familiar melody, I have a hard time "forgetting" the melody and just creating a new one, unless I were looking just at the chord changes. But the new song as improvised would not be the standard.

    Anyway, Mike, I'm not saying one cannot stray from the melody of a well known standard. But most improvisers suggest the melody elements in their solo. If not, it is not that particular standard, but something else. No? I'm not trying to straitjacket anyone. Please elaborate.
    It's pretty simple, can you hear a chord progression being outlined by the players lines?

    If so do you recognise what song from the Jazz standard repertoire it could be.

    Granted if it was something like rhythm changes you would just say "rhythm changes" if the player hinted at a certain melody that was written over that chord progression like "moose the mooch" then you would maybe say that.

    I don't think there are stead fast rules as such just to give it a go, man I heard people try and play the melody to some of these tunes un accompanied and still not recognised it!

    How about just giving it a go?
    Last edited by 55bar; 11-05-2015 at 12:41 PM.

  48. #147

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    Oh, I will. But I just need to figure out how to use Drop Box. Maybe it is me, but when I registered for an account, the process of uploading wav or mp3 files did not seem as simple as I might have wished for. It was frenetic period, so maybe I was too distracted. I hope it is relatively straightforward to upload some files. Drop box keeps sending me e-mails to 'show the account some love'.

    I have a nice Tascam DR 5 digital recorder that has the capacity to record off its dual condenser mics with very nice results. I just don't have time right now to create a YT video and upload that. I would rather do the Drop Box thing for something like this. Just rip the tune off and get it up on files.

    Maybe later today after I copy several patient files for transfer. Priority stuff, unfortunately.

    But my point, 55 bar, is simply this. Improvising on a standard or over its chord changes are two different things. In the first case, you are using the melody as your fundamental thematic motif. In the other, you are creating a different melody altogether over identical chord changes which I presume you are supposed to imply. Sure, one can often hear the similarity of one song's progression with another. But it is the melody which imparts an identity to the tune.

  49. #148

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    Oh, I will. But I just need to figure out how to use Drop Box. Maybe it is me, but when I registered for an account, the process of uploading wav or mp3 files did not seem as simple as I might have wished for. It was frenetic period, so maybe I was too distracted. I hope it is relatively straightforward to upload some files. Drop box keeps sending me e-mails to 'show the account some love'.

    I have a nice Tascam DR 5 digital recorder that has the capacity to record off its dual condenser mics with very nice results. I just don't have time right now to create a YT video and upload that. I would rather do the Drop Box thing for something like this. Just rip the tune off and get it up on files.

    Maybe later today after I copy several patient files for transfer. Priority stuff, unfortunately.

    But my point, 55 bar, is simply this. Improvising on a standard or over its chord changes are two different things. In the first case, you are using the melody as your fundamental thematic motif. In the other, you are creating a different melody altogether over identical chord changes which I presume you are supposed to imply. Sure, one can often hear the similarity of one song's progression with another. But it is the melody which imparts an identity to the tune.
    I'm not sure any of this was in question, certainly I didn't take it as that,

    even if you were to use melody fragments of the tune for your chorus over the changes, the progression should still be identifiable no? When I'm practicing this I have the melody running through my ears all the time,

    Shouldn't one be able to go from playing the tune to improvising at any point?

    Yes the "game" of what tune am I playing would be sort of pointless, but for me it's more about:

    Does what I'm playing stay true to the changes would you be able to stop me at any one time and ask where I was in the form,and what were the melody notes in relation to the chord at that point.

    I'm not saying I'm there yet but that's where I hope to be, this way of practicing is helping that.

    With regard to the melody which gives the tune its identity I agree to an extent but I would also suggest some chord progressions have a very strong identity too, "my funny valentine" that minor/mM7/m7/m6 is so strong people would almost certainly identify the tune without the melody. Also "giant steps" a Parker blues, even "Autumn leaves" have such a strong harmonic pull that they have their own identity minus the melody.

    That's not to say I'm disagreeing with you here, in performance melody is king!

    I'm away on tour at the moment so all my recordings are done with my crappy phone! I'd love to be at home where I could make some nicer sounds!

    Craig

    Ps. I'm just videoing these and using the tapatalk app to upload there is no messing just vid and upload.
    Last edited by 55bar; 11-05-2015 at 01:44 PM.

  50. #149

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    But my point, 55 bar, is simply this. Improvising on a standard or over its chord changes are two different things. In the first case, you are using the melody as your fundamental thematic motif. In the other, you are creating a different melody altogether over identical chord changes which I presume you are supposed to imply. Sure, one can often hear the similarity of one song's progression with another. But it is the melody which imparts an identity to the tune.
    Since about 1950 or so I would say that most jazz solos (I mean after the player has stated the theme or melody at the beginning) have been based as much on the underlying chord changes as they are on the melody of the tune. In fact a lot of the time they refer much less to the melody and more to the harmonies of the chords. Listen to Joe Pass's solo on 'Django' for example. I don't think there's much reference to the tune during his solo. But the lines he plays follow the chords beautifully and he creates wonderful new lines of his own.

    But there's no hard and fast rule on this. If your solo contains a lot of thematic material from the melody, it will be pretty obvious what the tune is. If however it relies more on creating new lines which fit the underlying chords, it will be less obvious. But the idea is that a well-structured solo should still reveal what the underlying chords are, and an experienced listener has a good chance of working out what the tune is, just from that.

    I don't think any of the solos I play tend to contain much of the original melody, just the odd snippet or reference maybe.

  51. #150

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    I've got a few charts to copy before I can do anything else. But I'm going to check Drop Box and try to understand how to upload files. It was not so transparent to me when I registered.

    As regards the question of taking a solo in the context of a classic standard. Of course, it would be pointless to just reiterate the melody without some development or without reference to the harmonic structure. And certainly one can stretch out. There are not hard and fast rules. But if your solo veers into a truly non-referential sphere, I think you lose the audience's feel for the tune.

    The only point I was making is that when I solo over the chord changes, the identity of the tune would be obvious almost immediately. Of course if one has never heard or is not familiar with the song in question, that would not be the case.