1. #1

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    Although I'm not the op, the recent thread about what the first three standards might be for players new to Jazz got me thinking. I'm there now, and they are Fly Me to the Moon, Misty, and Autumn Leaves.
    These three for no other reason than I was somewhat familiar with the tunes, and there are straight forward tutorials on youtube.
    It's a work in progress, but it has me thinking as to what should be the next step. I consider two options:

    1. Carefully select a few more standards. Something that features new concepts, or is more challenging.

    2. Stick with the original three and explore different voicings, subs, counter lines, etc.

    The more I consider it the more I lean toward number 2. Any input is appreciated.

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  3. #2

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    The benefit of digging deeply into any single tune (or 3 in this case) is that
    all the details uncovered in the process are potentially applicable to tunes
    to be learned in the future. Sometimes the application is literal and other times
    conceptual and at a certain point will become more automatic.
    This is a useful exploration at any point in a musicians development.

    For gigging purposes or even informal music sessions as well as personal desire
    for new content, learning more tunes is both necessary and fun.
    The exact timing of what to do when to be determined by individual circumstance.

  4. #3

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    I would say for somebody starting out, learn your first 5-10 tunes as deeply as you can.

    Then, switch approach and start learning tunes as much as you can. Start looking for similarities/differences. Write tunes out. Learn to sing the melody (even if you'd NEVER want to do that in public) Try to commit as much to memory as you can...you're literally training your brain to catalog tunes.

    As you build repertoire, pick one tune every week/two weeks/month (it's all gonna depend on how much you can actually practice) and do a "deep dive," learn in multiple keys, etc. So that deep learning element never goes away, because it's so important.
    Jeff Matz, Jazz Guitar:
    http://www.youtube.com/user/jeffreymatz

    "Jazz is like life...it goes on longer than you think, and as soon as you're like 'oh, I get it,' it ends."

    --The Ghost of Duke Ellington

  5. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by wengr View Post
    Although I'm not the op, the recent thread about what the first three standards might be for players new to Jazz got me thinking. I'm there now, and they are Fly Me to the Moon, Misty, and Autumn Leaves.
    These three for no other reason than I was somewhat familiar with the tunes, and there are straight forward tutorials on youtube.
    It's a work in progress, but it has me thinking as to what should be the next step. I consider two options:

    1. Carefully select a few more standards. Something that features new concepts, or is more challenging.

    2. Stick with the original three and explore different voicings, subs, counter lines, etc.

    The more I consider it the more I lean toward number 2. Any input is appreciated.
    I don't see it as an either/or proposition. Always learn new material, always do deep dives into tunes you've started. One of the the keys to being able to do deep dives on one tune is having ideas drawn from other tunes that you can apply. One of the keys to learning more tunes is having the insights you get from deep dives. How much time to spend on one versus the other is going to depend on what works best for you. But overall, I think you want to build up a repertoire of 10-ish tunes pretty quickly, and rotate your work on these. If that's too much for you, I think at a minimum you should add a blues, a latin/bossa nova tune, and a rhythm changes tune to what you have there sooner rather than later.

    Blues -- there are zillion, obviously. IMO, some good starter blues tunes are: Things Ain't What They Used To Be, Back at the Chicken Shack, Blues for Pat (Josh Redmond)
    Latin -- the stock answer is Blue Bossa, for good reasons; Jobim tunes are the goal, but they're hard (Corcovado is probably the easiest
    Rhythm -- I Got Rhythm (odds are you can already sing it). Everybody always learns Oleo first for some reason, but it's not easy.

    At some point pretty soon, you also want to get going on Satin Doll.

    John

  6. #5

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    John brings up some really good points...

    in those first 10 tunes (and I know we've had a "what tunes to learn first thread")

    1. Blues-- major/minor/Parker
    2. A bossa
    3. A rhythm changes tune, maybe a few with different bridges
    4. make sure you have a slow, medium, and fast as you can handle tune too...

    A balanced diet.
    Jeff Matz, Jazz Guitar:
    http://www.youtube.com/user/jeffreymatz

    "Jazz is like life...it goes on longer than you think, and as soon as you're like 'oh, I get it,' it ends."

    --The Ghost of Duke Ellington

  7. #6

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    Someone mentioned it in the other thread and it I think it is worth repeating "learn songs you like" especially if you are like me and do this for fun. Play tunes that speak to you; why would you do anything else?

    I also took the approach of slowly expanding my repertoire by trying to really learn my first few before I added a new one. It's a continuing process for me...keep tweaking existing ones slowly bring in new ones...maybe forget about one I worked on for what seemed like months only to dust it off an again and realize all that work I put in did not go to waste.

    I also find that once I memorize a song and play it for a while it becomes like that game of telephone...it morphs from the original...harmonically even melodically. So I go back to the lead sheets and discover new things about the tune or rediscover the original intention.

    I spent a lot of time learning bluegrass fiddle tunes and in that genre it was always said that once you get a bunch together adding new ones becomes easier and easier because you start recognizing both the similarities and the differences between tunes.

    I think it is the same for jazz standards.

  8. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont View Post
    John brings up some really good points...

    in those first 10 tunes (and I know we've had a "what tunes to learn first thread")

    1. Blues-- major/minor/Parker
    2. A bossa
    3. A rhythm changes tune, maybe a few with different bridges
    4. make sure you have a slow, medium, and fast as you can handle tune too...

    A balanced diet.
    I do play alot of Bb blues. Not a tune per say just trying to expand my options during the 12 bar. Actually I wish there would be a study group here on that. Maybe participants could share their various was of dealing with the various measures of the blues form.

    Bossa - I fool with shadow of your smile because I really like it, but it's still somewhat beyond me.

    Rhythm changes is something I don't have so suggestions for some tunes I can check out would be helpful.

    Thanks Jeff and to all who responded.