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#1011400 - 06/02/08 08:48 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
chrisbell Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/07
Posts: 1310
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
For those of you wanting to get deeper into this jazz thingie, I recommend having a look and listen through Chuck Israel's (former Bill Evans bassplayer) jazz online jazz arranging course. It's free, with score examples as well as audio. Just lesson 1 is worth a peak. Here.

(you need to have Flash installed; don't have it? Get it for free here )
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#1011401 - 06/02/08 09:20 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
Swingin' Barb Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 889
Loc: North Carolina
Great link - Chris - It even has a forum for questions.

Jazzwee - Do you think we should put this link on the thread index? Between your Lesson 15 of basic jazz theory, and Chris' link, we have quite a tutorial here. Thank you both!
_________________________
A Sudnow Method Fanatic
"Color tones, can't live without them"

To hear how I have progressed since 2006, check out: http://b.kane.home.mindspring.com

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#1011402 - 06/02/08 12:10 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
westarm Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/09/07
Posts: 63
Loc: Indiana, USA
great new lesson, jazzwee...thanks. and thanks to Chris for his grace notes....

david
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"The human brain can be quite wasteful." Chang, Fundamentals of Piano Practice

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#1011403 - 06/02/08 12:16 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
chrisbell Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/07
Posts: 1310
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
Ahh the dim chords. A plethora of substitutions.
Let's see if I can muddle this some more. \:\)
Basic:

Not so basic:


Same chords, different bass notes. Any dim-chord can be exchanged for any other dim-chord on that dim-chord. And that goes for the flat-nines too.

So what scale do I play? The whole-tone half-tone:


Mix that scale and flat-nines you get:


Here\'s a pdf for your printing pleasure.
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#1011404 - 06/02/08 01:43 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Barb, I added the Chuck Israels link to the index. That looks very promising. I haven't seen that before. I'm going to dive into that myself.

Chris, keep 'em coming! I appreciate the Finale support. (you're better at that than I am ;\) ).
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#1011405 - 06/13/08 01:27 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
Riddler Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 548
Loc: Florida
Here it is, almost the end of the semester, and along I come, wandering into the classroom, trying to pretend I’m just a few minutes late, and secretly hoping there's no final exam! \:\)

Actually, I’ve spent quite a bit of time trying to read through all the posts, but always found myself slipping further behind. Finally, I decided to compromise and just read the lessons, then join in the current discussions if possible.

So first of all, having collected the lessons and read through most of them, let me say THANKS, JAZZWEE, FOR THE GREAT BOOK!

One of the things that finally prompted me to join in here is that my lesson this week turns out to be Autumn Leaves. (I’ve been taking lessons from a jazz pianist - a lesson every other week - for about two years.) Ultimately, I hope to play it in a jam session in a jazz club, so when I practice a song, I also practice comping for a soloist and trading fours or eights with the drummer, using Band In A Box.

So here is a recording of me at the piano, playing Autumn Leaves, soloing for two choruses, comping for a computer generated vibe solo, then trading eights with a computer generated drum solo.

If anyone would care to listen, and give me any feedback, I will be most appreciative!

Thanks,

Ed

http://www.box.net/shared/frlihbbk80
_________________________
http://edsjazzpianopage.blogspot.com/

My fingers are slow, but easily keep pace with my thoughts.


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#1011406 - 06/13/08 11:11 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
Swingin' Barb Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 889
Loc: North Carolina
Ed - That was such fun to listen to. Gee, you've been lurking about here and hiding all this good stuff from us.

I have a question about your comping chords. How are they voiced? I'm learning to comp for my husband who is a vibist. I'm using root 7 in the left hand and the 4 note closed voicing in my right hand.

Post more here. There are no final exams. Anyway, you've aced your first exam. \:D
_________________________
A Sudnow Method Fanatic
"Color tones, can't live without them"

To hear how I have progressed since 2006, check out: http://b.kane.home.mindspring.com

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#1011407 - 06/13/08 12:12 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Hey Riddler! Welcome! Another LJP regular visiting us here. Great job on the recording.

And that vibe solo was computer generated? Amazing, that's some smart computer.

Since you joined us here let's offer you some tips to get you to the next level (Barb thinks of this as good news and bad news because of the work involved \:D ).

First of all you're off to a good start and reflective of two years of good lessons. I can see that in your playing. Very smooth and clean playing so looks like you have the technical facility. Voicings sound great and by the time you get to the advanced lessons you'll sound even better.

Now I'm going to tell you what my teacher told me about this time in your jazz quest. I perceive that your LH is dominating your RH and affecting your solo choices. Since you're already good at recording, try recording the LH comping separately so you can focus on the RH and be thinking about the melodies.

Certainly you already have the basics so I will dispense with chord/scales and such things. But I can sense that the RH is tethered and cannot freely come up with a melody. Especially since you have an accompaniment already, see if you can focus on the RH.

I think you are already thinking of chord tones as you've stuck with them in your solo. I don't know if you're actually thinking of 1,3,5,7 on the downbeats or if you're just thinking of the original melody notes but the choices sound good. This may be time to introduce primary non-chord tones and neighbor tones on the upbeats. Listen to the vibe solo, it does a good job of that. This comes naturally if you think of melodies.

Now one area that we discuss very frequently in this thread is swing as every player encounters the same issue. Listening to it right now we have to add a few things to improve the swing. First, learn to drag the RH a little. You play right on top of the beat all the time and it will sound mechanical. Lay it back a little so you can feel it dragging the comping. This will make a big difference in the sound and it will seem more relaxed. BTW the computer Vibe solo drags very nicely back.

Try to play more legato on your eight notes and read all our swing discussion about accents on the upbeat. It's too even and needs forward propulsion from the imbalance in accent. In some cases (especially when playing the melody, the accent seems to be on the downbeat).

On the comping, when comping for another instrument (like the vibes in this case), I would soften it and not be too busy. Maybe comp only during quiet portions.

All these issues are expected for 2 years into this so you're in very good shape. What I admire is your complete understanding of the basics of voicings and even creativity in the block chords. You also exude confidence in your playing.

Start thinking about these few issues and hopefully you'll post again with the next iteration.

Please ask questions as needed. And keep reading. As I find that people have reached the advanced lessons, I get motivated to add more lessons.
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#1011408 - 06/13/08 05:55 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
xcal Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/25/07
Posts: 78
Wow. Barb told me about this thread. I just read through this current page - wow! Riddler, great job, really enjoyed listening and I enjoyed Jazzwee's comments. Someone mentioned the lessons - are they in one place or do I need to go through all the pages 1 through the current page and pick them out?
Jazzwee, you're a natural teacher. And thanks Barb, for telling me about this thread. And thanks to Chris for the beautiful graphics.

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#1011409 - 06/13/08 06:51 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
Swingin' Barb Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 889
Loc: North Carolina
xcal - You made it over here!!! You are now on your way to having great fun. Go to page 1 of this thread and you will see an index to each of the 15 lessons.
_________________________
A Sudnow Method Fanatic
"Color tones, can't live without them"

To hear how I have progressed since 2006, check out: http://b.kane.home.mindspring.com

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#1011410 - 06/13/08 07:14 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
xcal Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/25/07
Posts: 78
Thanks Barb. So many new, neat things to learn!

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#1011411 - 06/13/08 11:39 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Hi xcal! Glad to have you visit. Just ask the questions and we will answer.
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#1011412 - 06/13/08 11:59 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
johnswanson Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/07/08
Posts: 9
Loc: New York
Nice done! I give my 1st post here!
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#1011413 - 06/14/08 01:30 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
xcal Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/25/07
Posts: 78
Jazzwee, thanks for the welcome and for inviting me to ask questions. I have a couple:
1) I listened to the swing-time versions of the al-scale examples. They sound good to me - it sounds like jazz; but I don't hear an accent on the offbeat. I hear the accent on the beat. When I listen to your swingA sample though, I do hear the accent on the offbeat (&). Is my elderly ear fooling me? This is really important to me. When I sit down and mess around with the blues (it's easy to play bad-sounding blues, I think: "oh, I'm really smokin'". But then I record myself and I think "man, that's awful. I should take up photography or something". I think a lot of it is poor rhythm (including accents and phrasing). BTW, I tried accenting the offbeats (&) in the AL-scale - difficult (if I'm understanding correctly); much practice will be required (if I'm hearing samples correctly.
2) Why don't I see Rintincop's posts?

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#1011414 - 06/14/08 02:26 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
xcal,

Are you talking about just the melody of AL? Be careful with over analyzing that without wading through the content.

When playing the melody, the accenting applies only to EIGHTH Notes. Quarter notes are played short and detached. The melody of AL is mostly quarter notes so there's not much opportunity to apply accenting there.

Now there are soloing examples and that's where you should distinctly hear the accents. There were plenty of youtube examples as well if you look at the swing links.

Accenting is difficult at first. Accenting is linked to rhythm/time actually. Mastery of rhythm will lead to control of accents. This is why this is technically difficult and it will take time. Developing awareness of accents and it's application is the first step. Once you are aware of such things as accents and dragging, your eyes will open and you will feel this rush of understanding when you listen to the masters play.

The beginner's limitation is that he doesn't hear this yet.

Re: Ritincop's posts - perhaps he deleted his posts.
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#1011415 - 06/14/08 08:07 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
knotty Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 2940
Loc: Bethesda, MD (Washington D.C)
Riddler,

I too agree that over-analyzing swing may not work.

There's an easier way. Pick up a Louis Armstrong, sing over it, play over it. He is the inventor of swing after all. (it's also far less technical that later cornet/trumpet player).

I myself, no matter how many times you explain to me do not understand the offbeat onbeat thing. I simply don't get it.

Alternatively, Wynton Kelly has many recordings of AL. He plays the head with limited embellishment. Just play over that.

In my opinion, forget the theory ...

(theory is good for voicings and such)

The other advice I'd have for you, is to redo the same AL, like jazzwee said, with only RH.
And sing as you play.
I'd be curious to hear you record just that. You know, just the head, play and say (bah-doo).

take care --

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#1011416 - 06/14/08 11:09 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
xcal Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/25/07
Posts: 78
No, I'm talking about the scale exercise, lesson 8. We're to do two versions: straight and swing. If I understand the swing version correctly, we're to accent the (&), the offbeat. This is difficult, and for me, it's going to take lots of practice to get it down. My swing sounds like:
http://www.box.net/shared/eladihgooc
That's the example of incorrect swing Jazzwee put up. But, in terms of "accenting", the lesson 8 exercise should sound like:
http://www.box.net/shared/cmgedcy88c
the example of good swing Jazzwee put up. Am I making any sense? In lesson 8, I understand the left hand rhythm and accents, but it's the R.H. offbeat accents I'm asking about.

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#1011417 - 06/14/08 11:33 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
xcal,

This is an edit. I'm redoing my original response since I misunderstood you. The first time.

Most beginners swing as in the first example. This is because the common understanding of swing is limited to "Long-Short, Long-Short", "Long-Short" when playing eight notes. This has a corny sound and you will not find jazz masters playing in this manner. It sounds almost machine like.

Typically, a long-short is a 70/30 ratio when comparing pairs of eight notes.

If you actually listen to the masters play, they don't focus as much on the long-short ratio but more on the accents. Some players like Lennie Tristano will play close to 50/50. Wynton Kelly might go from 60/40 to 50/50 and everything else in between.

So my lesson here is to move from focusing on the extreme long-short swing ratio but more on accents. And keep closer to 50/50 than to 70/30. In other words, we need to deemphasize the oompah-oompah sound.

Where one needs to focus on are the accents. It's the accents that give the propulsion to the jazz sound because the offbeat accent is what balances against the strength of the downbeat. And this is actually what gives the most authentic swing.

So forget about Long-Short. That will come naturally and will vary by the player you are trying to emulate. Put the focus on accents. In jazz, the offbeats are of bigger importance, both rhythmically and even note selection.
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#1011418 - 06/14/08 12:35 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
chrisbell Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/07
Posts: 1310
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
 Quote:
Originally posted by xcal:
No, I'm talking about the scale exercise, lesson 8. We're to do two versions: straight and swing. If I understand the swing version correctly, we're to accent the (&), the offbeat. This is difficult, and for me, it's going to take lots of practice to get it down. [/b]
I'd better revise that example as I have come know Finale a bit better. \:\)
The actual idea is to play the exercise in many different ways, it's a bear necessities score.
When playing it "swing" the idea is to play with a triplet feel doo-DAAH, doo-DAAH, with the accent on the off-beat. But to many accents can be the undoing of a solo. But as an exercise it's something different, it's to build muscle memory, knowledge of leading tones (in the right hand the guide tones are third to seventh.)
Another important aspect of this sort of etude is to create holes, space; i.e play 2 bars, keep two bars empty, play two bars, etc. Do it again and this time rest 2 bars, play 2 bars, etc. Or as I write, mix your own playing with the etude. It's by making one's own decisions that you learn how to find your own voice.

*) bear is not a typo, Bear Necessities a great song from the Jungle Book
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#1011419 - 06/14/08 12:46 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Hey Chris, good to see you're still checking in.

As I look back now at my swing example, Chris' point is well made. As an exercise, it sounds weird to make a sequence of alternating accents over a long sequence of notes since that's not the way we play in real life. In real live playing those stretches are short and interspersed with space AND different length notes.

So to reiterate Chris' comments, the example is clearly to have a beginner develop muscle memory on accents.

BTW - my teacher, who is a well known "modern jazz" player, taught me to demphasize the triplet feel in addition to talking about accents. This is a stylistic choice though. Bill Evans played closer to triplet feel.
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#1011420 - 06/14/08 12:49 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
xcal Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/25/07
Posts: 78
Thanks Jazzwee and Chris. I'm think I'm beginning to get the idea. Sorry for being obtuse. I'll try and work up an exercise 8 sample (in the next few days) and post it for your critical review.

And once again, you guys are great - much appreciated.

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#1011421 - 06/14/08 01:35 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
chrisbell Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/07
Posts: 1310
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
For those of you interested in exercises. Here's one based on playing arpeggios holding the top/lead note down and sustaining it as well as changing the chords "it" belongs to.

Here\'s the whole page - pdf.
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#1011422 - 06/14/08 02:20 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
That's very interesting Chris. Could you elaborate further on how this is applied? I can see you are playing multiple chords but maintaining the top and bottom shared tones.
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#1011423 - 06/14/08 02:58 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
chrisbell Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/07
Posts: 1310
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
Well, hmmm, it's an exercise in staying put.
ie: not moving around to much. It's also a teaching tool for learning about pedal-tones (in the top or bottom). I use it also as a finger exercise, playing it slow and holding the top and bottom notes done (as much as possible, it depends on hand size)

The staying put part means also, how to get from one chord to another without going through large leaps.
Sort of closed voicing soloing.

(although this exercise is written 1 bar phrases it can also be played each bar times 4)

Here\'s the same exercise but with LH variations (pdf)
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#1011424 - 06/14/08 05:06 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
Riddler Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 548
Loc: Florida
Barb,

Thanks for listening and for the comments.

As to the lurking - actually, I've been posting recordings to the recent piano bars and the recital. They were solo piano recordings of jazz standards, but no improv.

Re the voicings - they are mostly just roots in LH, 3-7 or 7-3 in RH. I'm inclined to stick with a minimalist comping style till I get more experience. I'd like to play shells in LH and 4-note rootless voicings in RH, or voicings in LH and octaves in RH, but I know I'll get carried away and start pounding! The advice I get is: keep it sparse.

What comping does your husband like when he is playing?

BTW, In the actual jam sessions that I'm practicing for, the soloist would probably be a horn player, or the bassist. In Band In A Box, the vibe soloist sounds a lot better than the other soloists so that is what I practice with.

Thanks again,

Ed
_________________________
http://edsjazzpianopage.blogspot.com/

My fingers are slow, but easily keep pace with my thoughts.


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#1011425 - 06/14/08 05:08 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
Riddler Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 548
Loc: Florida
Jazzwee,

Thanks for listening, for the compliments, for the insightful comments, and especially for the tips!

I'm especially amazed that you picked up on the way my LH is constricting my RH lines. There's a story. I have had some difficulty finding a good balance between my RH and LH playing. My right hand thinks it is William Faulkner - it just wants to go on and on, starting new phrases the instant it finishes the previous phrases, in an endless stream of notes. My RH really thinks that sounds great, but it is quite alone in that opinion! It’s a habit I’m trying to break. I tried all the usual things they recommend ("think like a horn player - stop to breathe", etc.) Anything I tried worked for a few minutes, but nothing really seemed to stick. Finally, my teacher suggested this approach: Let your RH play two bars, or four bars, then stop and let the LH respond. Call and response, on a strict timetable. Voila! That stuck. So for a while I'm going to work on this habit, then phase back into a less rigid way of combining the RH and LH efforts. Ultimately I want to get away from starting and ending a phrases in any mechanical way.

And of course you're right about my playing always being right on top of the beat. Since I started taking lessons I have gone from being all over the place, WRT the beat, to constantly rushing ahead of the beat, to on top of the beat (on my good days). Progress is slow , but non-negligible!

Some of these issues, especially swing and accents, are really hard to tackle in an internet forum, but I think I will take them up with my teacher.

Thanks again,

Ed
_________________________
http://edsjazzpianopage.blogspot.com/

My fingers are slow, but easily keep pace with my thoughts.


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#1011426 - 06/14/08 05:38 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Riddler, it was no big discovery about what I found in your playing ;\) since those are traits common to all of us when we started. This actually makes teaching jazz easier than I figured because most of us stray the same way.

In my case, my teacher taught me to have a minimalist LH at the beginning, or no LH at all. I told him that I thought my LH wasn't getting rhythmic training or that my LH was weak.

This is very strange but my LH developed strongly on its own without any special help, just like my teacher said it would. I can't explain it. The only thing I practiced was the usual scales but in playing, my LH mostly played shells for a long time. The key seemed to be that once the RH was more free to go wherever it wanted to go, there is more brain power in reserve to keep an eye on the LH.

My own LH just caught up recently I think.
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#1011427 - 06/14/08 07:22 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Gonzalo Rubalcaba playing AL - blazing with sixteenth notes...Hard core...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qy_OxEk_w_A&feature=related
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#1011428 - 06/14/08 08:11 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
chrisbell Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/07
Posts: 1310
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
Not bad indeed. Prodigious technique, great feel. Though I tend to break out in a rash when AL is played "to" fast.
I much prefer:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eOaBaGrpL68 and
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q-3x-dSHKew&feature=related
_________________________
I never play anything the same way once.

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#1011429 - 06/15/08 12:35 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc.
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
I'm with you Chris. I prefer it slow. But we've never posted this style of playing before so it offers a contrast. Those are my two favorite versions.
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Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Easter Themed Recordings - Kawai CA95
by wolferblade
04/20/14 04:55 AM
First recordings - Some music for Easter
by wolferblade
04/20/14 01:01 AM
Recorded a song on my workstation tonight
by Arizona Sage
04/20/14 12:04 AM
How to tune a piano.....
by Grandpianoman
04/19/14 11:46 PM
Need help with upgrading(?) Roland digital
by Pathbreaker
04/19/14 10:23 PM
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