Hi, my friends!
It’s such a privilege to write in this fantastic magazine. My intention is talking about some techniques that are useful in jazz improvisation.
So… let’s start!!!!!
Some years ago a good friend of mine called me for a gig with a famous Italian jazz saxophone player. I was very excited and I felt up to it. Unfortunately, the sax player arrived later for a car problem…. so…no time for rehearsal! The club was full, the club owner was happy! The band was very good and we were extremely relaxed due to the fact we had to play some well-known standards. The gig began: BIG SURPRISE! First song was a tremendous fast F blues with all altered chords!!!! It killed me.
I used to study mainly chords like maj7 or min7, but I felt lost with other chords. Mr. Sax cast a black look at me and I died. That gig was one of the best music lessons in my life. I learned a big truth from a mistake! I notice same mistakes in my students. If you take a look at the chords below, you can see a list of 11 types of chord voicings suppose you have a basic knowledge of chord voicings. However there are many good books around about this subject.
My friends…you have to learn all very well!!! These chords are the basement for strong walkin’ bass lines and good improvisation. Be sure you are comfortable with all C voicings so learn it in all 12 keys. In exercise n.1 you must only take a look to notes within the chord. In exercise 2 you have to play all notes. Be sure to practice one type at a time. It’s very important that you practice slowly all intervals in the chord, so your brain can quick learn the new information.
When you are familiar with this stuff, you will start to practice it in a musical way. In the next columns we will see how to practice it and we’ll use some techniques I learned from great Charlie Banacos.
hope you will appreciate my contribution. See you soon. Ciao!
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