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  1. #851

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    Be careful... I hear people wanting to change the grip-set presented by Howard Roberts, but perhaps they are what they are for a reason. Perhaps they leave harmonic room to play over. Or the voice leading was thought out. He wasn't Howard Roberts for nothing...

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  3. #852

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    Week 20. Day 4. Blues For Alice in G. Last night's session was very good. This evening, not so much. Not sure why? I just couldn't get into it. Even my warm-ups felt a bit clumsy and distracted. Very interesting considering the Blues For Alice exercises have always been some of my favorites, whereas Baubles has typically not been as inspiring.Oh, well. I'm not going to beat myself up. Tomorrow is another day.

  4. #853

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    Quote Originally Posted by StringNavigator
    Be careful... I hear people wanting to change the grip-set presented by Howard Roberts, but perhaps they are what they are for a reason. Perhaps they leave harmonic room to play over. Or the voice leading was thought out. He wasn't Howard Roberts for nothing...
    You make a good point. I learned a lot about internalizing tunes by starting out each week with shell voicings and gradually expanding into HR’s voicings as I got the tune under my fingers. Probably the single best lesson I learned on this, my third (and, admittedly, aborted) run through the program. Howard Roberts was Howard Roberts, which also means that some of his grips can be pretty challenging, especially at tempo.

  5. #854
    Quote Originally Posted by StringNavigator View Post
    Be careful... I hear people wanting to change the grip-set presented by Howard Roberts, but perhaps they are what they are for a reason. Perhaps they leave harmonic room to play over. Or the voice leading was thought out. He wasn't Howard Roberts for nothing...
    That's very true. And it's also true that one's choice of chordal choice suggests, if not compels a soloists to hear, think and play a certain way. For me, I have to say, it's not been my point to strive towards HR's vocabulary and language, though I have a great admiration for it. I believed that the utility of the approach, in a steady eighth note/triplet soloing program was an excellent course to mastery of the coordinated hands and cleaner technique.
    HR also has a very specific harmonic agenda wherein he incorporates really useful dominant devices into the fabric of strong and well known chord movements. There are many ways to go in the development of one's own soloing language and comping voices do go hand in hand with what you hear and what you do. Even in steady eighths, there is an important component of hearing, listening and how you relate to harmonic space.
    I found that once I internalized the changes, I could record a backing track of bass line, dyads or triad pairs. This definitely made me solo differently. All the time of course, I held the HR changes, if not voicings, as sacred though.
    When I was doing this program before, I found the written out voicings really helpful, and also intimidating. When I developed as a player and I did the program again, I could chord better and I found them really useful. But in the time between the last go at it and now, I've got a chordal/solo relationship that's changed. I found that adaptation at this point, for me, helped me break through to a whole new fingering and hearing relationship.
    I feel that's the real beauty of the Super Chops program: it's strict, but there's room for the individual to make their own solo. He makes it absolutely clear that his written out solos are merely ways that some suggestions can be seen.
    And even in the guidelines of the book, page 19, he writes:
    Howard Roberts Super Chops: study group for a tune based practice routine-screen-shot-2021-04-22-6-14-59-am-png
    As a matter of fact, I think I may post the whole list of useful study suggestions. They're remarkably insightful and it's been a headslap to re-read the just now.
    Thanks for the post, it's a really good point of discussion!

  6. #855
    Quote Originally Posted by D'Aquisto Fan View Post
    Week 20. Day 4. Blues For Alice in G. Last night's session was very good. This evening, not so much. Not sure why? I just couldn't get into it. Even my warm-ups felt a bit clumsy and distracted. Very interesting considering the Blues For Alice exercises have always been some of my favorites, whereas Baubles has typically not been as inspiring.Oh, well. I'm not going to beat myself up. Tomorrow is another day.
    I'm going to let Howard Roberts himself address this one:
    Howard Roberts Super Chops: study group for a tune based practice routine-screen-shot-2021-04-22-6-35-05-am-png
    Note especially point Q. We all have our ups and downs. Especially as a performer. You'll notice big changes from day to day. But overall, the steps you take will make you a better player.

  7. #856
    I think I put these points out there in a way back earlier post, but there's so much good advice, I should've been referencing these all along. But keep these in mind. They'll serve you in your daily practice for as long as you play:
    Howard Roberts Super Chops: study group for a tune based practice routine-screen-shot-2021-04-22-1-55-36-pm-pngHoward Roberts Super Chops: study group for a tune based practice routine-screen-shot-2021-04-22-1-55-48-pm-pngHoward Roberts Super Chops: study group for a tune based practice routine-screen-shot-2021-04-22-1-56-05-pm-png

  8. #857
    Week 20 Day 5
    Friday Project 3-B Angel Eyes A min
    Speed and approach goal: to your upper limits
    Left and right hand articulations
    Howard Roberts Super Chops: study group for a tune based practice routine-project-3-b-angel-eyes-amin-png
    This is our last look at the minor tonality Angel Eyes.

    Suggestion of the day: Minor tonalities are among the first forms that are traditionally taught in blues and jazz improvisation because they can employ the forms of the minor pentatonic scale.
    You can easily use the minor pentatonics to get fast and relatively easy mileage from your lines.
    Try incorporating straight pentatonic lines mixed with scale and arpeggiated passages for a nice fluid mixture.
    Try using a pentatonic but with approach tones and ornaments on the chord tones within the pentatonic.
    Try taking a pentatonic idea and repeat it on another minor tonal centre for some nice motific variety.

    All these things will push your ear to different places.
    Have fun!

  9. #858

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    Week 20. Day 5. Angel Eyes in A minor. Thankfully tonight was a better session than last night. I felt more on top of my game. Even though this might be my least favorite of the exercises. I got up to 150 bpm. I might take another pass this evening at a faster tempo. I took JBN's advice and tried to incorporate more pentatonic with approach notes and other ornamentations. It's so uplifting when the changes finally move to a familiar ii-V and pull you out of the constant minor-ness of it all. Looking forward to tackling the last session tomorrow night, although a bit sad at the same time.