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#1239737 - 07/29/09 03:18 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: jazzwee]
ten left thumbs Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/22/09
Posts: 3328
Loc: Scotland
Ah, okey doke! smile I understand now.

Perhaps I should explain more. I have bought two books: Richards Improvising Blues and Exploring Jazz Piano book 1. Both come with CDs of all the tracks. Both books start out at a level way below what I'm capable of, certainly for the blues book.

The real value of them for me, is that improvising is an integral part, right from the start. So I have written down: a dead boring bass line, a slightly-less boring tune for 8 bars, followed by 8 bars where I improvise from the same scale, and then a little thing to finish with. Now, for me it's a challenge to improvise with one hand, while keeping the bass line going (however simple) for the required amount of bars, and to come up with anything tuneful that fits the rhythm. It's a challenge to hear the note I want to play (out of the 3 notes available to me) and play it. But, I'm getting there.

What it makes me realise is that improvising to something more harmonically complex (like AL) is not actually doing me a lot of good right now. Later, maybe. And as that was one of my stated aims in this thread, I thought I should let you know! smile

What I will also do, just to stop myself dying of boredom, is carry on with the lessons in this thread, but not improvising at this point.
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#1239760 - 07/29/09 03:43 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: jazzwee]
Nikalette Offline
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Registered: 12/22/08
Posts: 1074
Loc: California
Good grief, Charlie Brown! I just found this thread and what a gold mine. I know the original post(s) was (were) way back when but I'm so looking forward to working my way through all this.

Thank you for doing this, jazzwee.

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#1239788 - 07/29/09 04:18 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: Nikalette]
ten left thumbs Offline
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Registered: 05/22/09
Posts: 3328
Loc: Scotland
Hi Nikalette, it's great to have you on board! smile You played any jazz before?
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#1239792 - 07/29/09 04:29 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: Nikalette]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
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TLT, you were making good progress with the Improv. When you're ready, go with me on this and work only on the problems I state so you're not overwhelmed. If your expectation is to sound like a sheet music of Blues, it's not going to happen. That takes time and ear development. But you really have some skills here so when you have the patience, we can restart the process. Believe me you were doing quite well (with the last improv). Keep up with that practice list we made up back then.

Jazz isn't just one thing as you know. So there are multiple things to study at once. No need to beat the horse till it's dead as there's only so much improvement possible per day. So it is better to study multiple things at once. Look ahead a year.

Now you are correct that there are so many other lessons here. 3 + 2 voicings all the way to Rootless voicings. Those have to be practiced now. Doing "heads" of tunes should be started whenever you feel that the stuff you're doing is below your level (I think it is below your level but it won't take you long though).

There's the daily "listening" to jazz that you have to do of your artists of choice. BTW - you will probably evolve here. As your ears understand more, you will appreciate more artists. For example, I didn't get Bill Evans at first. Yet he's the pillar of a lot of Jazz piano (like Rootless voicings). Finally I understand what he's doing and it seems amazing to me. So collect the list of all mentioned artists and keep listening.

In the meantime, we are always here to give feedback. One of your advantages is that you're already an advanced pianist so technical things won't bog you down.

But don't be overconfident. At this stage of the game, I would not try to improvise while doing a walking bass on the left hand as it stifles the brain development on the right hand. Practice the bass line while doing chords on the RH. Don't put your energies into combining it. Very little in actual jazz piano is driven by Walking bass since there's usually a rhythm section. And solo piano sounds better with 3 + 2 voicings. So I look at Walking bass as an advanced project that's specialized in function.

The value of learning walking bass is that you could record a bass line and then improvise over it. A nice skill. So not necessarily HT.
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#1239794 - 07/29/09 04:30 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Nikalette, Welcome. I've seen your posts about Jazz before and I was wondering why you haven't seen us. In any case, as any questions here or participate in the lessons.
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#1239800 - 07/29/09 04:37 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: jazzwee]
ten left thumbs Offline
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Registered: 05/22/09
Posts: 3328
Loc: Scotland
Originally Posted By: jazzwee

In the meantime, we are always here to give feedback.


Thanks! smile


Quote:
But don't be overconfident. At this stage of the game, I would not try to improvise while doing a walking bass on the left hand ....


LOL! OK. I promise, I won't.








[/quote]
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#1239821 - 07/29/09 04:54 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: ten left thumbs]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
TLT, I learned to walk the bass while improvising and I haven't used it in over a year. It's hard to keep good time with it. I think it took me 2 years to do it comfortably. But now I wonder why I spent 2 years on it smile

To me the more important skill is the Bossa Nova Latin Bass line (1 and 5 of chord only). That would get used more often.

The reason walking bass is not something I use often is because Walking bass has poor 'orchestration'. The sound is hollow because often the middle register is empty. Not the best solo piano sound. So my teacher does not want me to do it. But it's good for comping (LH bass, RH chords).





Edited by jazzwee (07/29/09 04:57 PM)
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#1239903 - 07/29/09 06:23 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: jazzwee]
dave solazzo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/30/09
Posts: 160
Loc: syracuse ny
i havent been using that much walking bass in my solo playing lately. it can get a bit thin with just the two voices. for that reason i think that you have to use it sparingly, and mix it up with other techniques. sometimes i just walk a chorus or a half chorus at some point on a tune, usually somewhere during the "blowing," and for the rest of the tune i use other solo devices .

i also agree that it works better when you're comping chords in your right hand. i find myself using it more in settings where i am playing with other musicians but without a bass player, like a trio gig with just piano, trumpet, and sax. it works great on gigs like that.

the other thing about walking bass is that rhythmically it locks you into a certain kind of playing. it's more of an exact, precise, traditional swing kind of a groove. and that is great, i do love that style of playing. but it's also nice to use a more elastic approach to the time, especially when you want to slip and slide rhythmically and displace phrases and stretch the beat. when im trying to do that kind of a thing i use a more "free" bass accompaniment, like playing the bass in 2, or just throwing an occasional bass note in here and there.





Edited by dave solazzo (07/29/09 06:25 PM)
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#1239921 - 07/29/09 06:46 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: dave solazzo]
jazzwee Online   content
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Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Dave, I couldn't have said it better. thumb You really hit the nail on the head. I find that on a lot of Jazz websites, there's too much focus on Walking Bass, disproportionate to its applicability. Maybe because it seems simple. Perhaps, because it is rhythmically simple, it excuses the player from putting a lot of thought into their voicings/orchestration.
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#1239928 - 07/29/09 06:51 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: dave solazzo]
knotty Offline
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Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 2939
Loc: Bethesda, MD (Washington D.C)
A guy to listen to with monster walking bass is Dave McKenna. He was just out there at his own level. Also Tristano, or in a different genre, Gene Harris.

gotta go work on Donna lee wink

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#1239988 - 07/29/09 07:54 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: knotty]
dave solazzo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/30/09
Posts: 160
Loc: syracuse ny
yeah, dave mckenna was great! he was a walking bass master, and he used that technique a lot in his solo playing. but i think his style was better suited for walking bass because he was a more traditional player. you dont hear nearly as much walking bass in the playing of the more progressive pianists like brad mehldau, chick corea, bill evans, keith jarrett, or herbie hancock. in fact, i dont think i've heard any walking bass at all in their solo playing.

btw, you guys have inspired me to learn the head to donna lee. it's funny, i've comped the changes a million times on gigs with horn players, but i've never actually taken the time to learn the head. it's such a great head to learn because it's so much more than just a melody. it's actually more like an improvised solo. that head can really teach you a lot about constructing good bebop lines!


Edited by dave solazzo (07/29/09 07:57 PM)
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#1240111 - 07/29/09 11:57 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: dave solazzo]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Dave, glad to see some discussion here! One of these days, I too have to learn the head of "Confirmation". smile I'm more influenced by modern players so I haven't really focused on bebop and rhythm changes so much anymore. So I've pushed Confirmation aside. But like Donna Lee, that has good solo lines too so I must do it.

McKenna is a monster walking bass player; Tristano of course; and Kenny Barron too. But I'm more in the "progressive pianist" camp you mention (all on your list smile ), where I feel that Jazz is taken to a new level. But that's my preference.

Talking about learning heads, Knotty, don't forget "Oleo". Very good for two hands but a very short head compared to Donna Lee/Confirmation but the same kind of Rhythm changes kind of thing.
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#1240344 - 07/30/09 01:06 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: mahlzeit]
Nikalette Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/08
Posts: 1074
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: mahlzeit
Also, a handy tip in these kinds of situations is to go to a site like MusicNotes.com or SheetMusicPlus.com and look up the tune. These sites will show you the first page for free (though you may have to install a browser plugin in order to see the sheet music). That's a great way to get started with a tune.

For example, Autumn Leaves is at:
http://www.musicnotes.com/sheetmusic/mtd.asp?ppn=MN0028996


Hi, I'm slowly working my way thru this thread 2 years behind...but anyway I found a site called Wikifonia which provides a lot of free lead sheets.

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#1240367 - 07/30/09 01:36 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: ten left thumbs]
Nikalette Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/08
Posts: 1074
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: ten left thumbs
Hi Nikalette, it's great to have you on board! smile You played any jazz before?


Not really. I've been trying, but not playing. I signed up for an online jazz course, but have worked mainly on playing blues/boogie, because I love the sound of the left hand in those styles. I know a fair amount of theory, but I've been lost with
the application. I really like this topic, because (I'm up to page 17 or so) I can see the basic lessons can be applied to any song.

I'm pretty comfortable singing jazz. Improvizing vocally just comes naturally to me, but I can't seem to do that on the keyboard.

My purchase of a digital piano has really sparked my learning jazz. It's easier to muddle through it on a headset or with the volume low, or with a different "voice."

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#1240369 - 07/30/09 01:37 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: ten left thumbs]
Nikalette Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/08
Posts: 1074
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: ten left thumbs
Ah, okey doke! smile I understand now.

Perhaps I should explain more. I have bought two books: Richards Improvising Blues and Exploring Jazz Piano book 1. Both come with CDs of all the tracks. Both books start out at a level way below what I'm capable of, certainly for the blues book.

The real value of them for me, is that improvising is an integral part, right from the start. So I have written down: a dead boring bass line, a slightly-less boring tune for 8 bars, followed by 8 bars where I improvise from the same scale, and then a little thing to finish with. Now, for me it's a challenge to improvise with one hand, while keeping the bass line going (however simple) for the required amount of bars, and to come up with anything tuneful that fits the rhythm. It's a challenge to hear the note I want to play (out of the 3 notes available to me) and play it. But, I'm getting there.

What it makes me realise is that improvising to something more harmonically complex (like AL) is not actually doing me a lot of good right now. Later, maybe. And as that was one of my stated aims in this thread, I thought I should let you know! smile

What I will also do, just to stop myself dying of boredom, is carry on with the lessons in this thread, but not improvising at this point.


I just got the Richards' Jazz Book 1...quite a step up from his blues book...it gives me a headache.

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#1240385 - 07/30/09 02:09 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: Nikalette]
Swingin' Barb Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 889
Loc: North Carolina
Hi Nikalette,

I have both Richards books also. I got two-thirds of the way through his blues book. I got to page 73 in his jazz book. I realized I needed something that would be easier to play from the get-go. I didn't want to spend so much time working up arrangements.

Well, I found a gem. It is Noah Baerman's Beginning Jazz Keyboard book with CD. The tunes are easy, and a lot of fun. Even the short exercises are a blast. I can't stay away. He even talks about accenting the off beats -- something that is not discussed in the Richard's book.

Here is the link:

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=beginning+jazz+keyboard+cd&x=0&y=0

I bought it from a reseller for less than $3.00 - what a deal. I will revisit the Richards' book after I finish this one.

Barb

I forgot to mention - he also has an Intermediate and Advanced level.


Edited by Swingin' Barb (07/30/09 02:11 PM)
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#1240457 - 07/30/09 04:21 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: Nikalette]
ten left thumbs Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/22/09
Posts: 3328
Loc: Scotland
Hi Nikalette, we have a lot in common!

Originally Posted By: Nikalette
but have worked mainly on playing blues/boogie,


ditto

Quote:
because I love the sound of the left hand in those styles.


ditto

Quote:
I know a fair amount of theory,


ditto

Quote:


but I've been lost with
the application.


ditto

Quote:
I really like this topic, because (I'm up to page 17 or so) I can see the basic lessons can be applied to any song.


OK, you've read more than me.

Quote:
I'm pretty comfortable singing jazz. Improvizing vocally just comes naturally to me, but I can't seem to do that on the keyboard.


Keep singing. smile I'm no authority, but have heard from many good sources that it helps to sing what you hear (accurately) then transfer to fingers, also to sing a note at the same time as improvising. If you can sing, you're half-way there.

Me, I would sing, but I have good ears and a crap voice. I just can't get beyond my ears telling me how bad it sounds!

Re the Richards jazz book, I've just graduated from page 15 to page 18, and it's not boring any more!
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#1240504 - 07/30/09 06:28 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: Swingin' Barb]
Nikalette Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/08
Posts: 1074
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: Swingin' Barb
Hi Nikalette,

I have both Richards books also. I got two-thirds of the way through his blues book. I got to page 73 in his jazz book. I realized I needed something that would be easier to play from the get-go. I didn't want to spend so much time working up arrangements.

Well, I found a gem. It is Noah Baerman's Beginning Jazz Keyboard book with CD. The tunes are easy, and a lot of fun. Even the short exercises are a blast. I can't stay away. He even talks about accenting the off beats -- something that is not discussed in the Richard's book.

Here is the link:

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=beginning+jazz+keyboard+cd&x=0&y=0

I bought it from a reseller for less than $3.00 - what a deal. I will revisit the Richards' book after I finish this one.

Barb

I forgot to mention - he also has an Intermediate and Advanced level.



Thanks, I'll give the beginner and intermediate a shot, they're $12 and $15 at Alibris with the CD...there are some cheaper copies butI don't think they include the CD.

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#1240505 - 07/30/09 06:30 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: ten left thumbs]
Nikalette Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/08
Posts: 1074
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: ten left thumbs
Hi Nikalette, we have a lot in common!

Originally Posted By: Nikalette
but have worked mainly on playing blues/boogie,


ditto

Quote:
because I love the sound of the left hand in those styles.


ditto

Quote:
I know a fair amount of theory,


ditto

Quote:


but I've been lost with
the application.


ditto

Quote:
I really like this topic, because (I'm up to page 17 or so) I can see the basic lessons can be applied to any song.


OK, you've read more than me.

Quote:
I'm pretty comfortable singing jazz. Improvizing vocally just comes naturally to me, but I can't seem to do that on the keyboard.


Keep singing. smile I'm no authority, but have heard from many good sources that it helps to sing what you hear (accurately) then transfer to fingers, also to sing a note at the same time as improvising. If you can sing, you're half-way there.

Me, I would sing, but I have good ears and a crap voice. I just can't get beyond my ears telling me how bad it sounds!

Re the Richards jazz book, I've just graduated from page 15 to page 18, and it's not boring any more!


I can sing better than I can play, my goal is really to accompany myself well, and play better than I sing.

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#1240580 - 07/30/09 09:01 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: jazzwee]
Nikalette Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/08
Posts: 1074
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
Hi Playadom, unlike reading sheet music, jazz is played in a more free form fashion and so we are learning pieces of the puzzle so to speak. In the end, the intent is that someone could take a "Lead Sheet" (Music that has chords and melody) of any tune, and improvise upon it. It could be applied to any tune.

Not everyone needs to take this to the full level of learning everything jazz. An objective for some could be to play this tune as a "cocktail piano piece".

So far, what we've discussed is how to play the chords to Autumn Leaves in the LH and play the melody in the RH.

I hope that most people will take it to the point of playing chords in the LH while inventing new melodies in the RH, or improvisation in other words.

Hopefully this thread will provide enough background to achieve this.

This is pretty free form. Not everyone can learn at the same pace so this is a long term thread. Some people may take weeks to get beyond page 1.

Hopefully, I and others will put information here in increasing levels of complexity until it becomes a long term learning resource.

This is not something that can be learned in a weekend.

Here's a professional version of Autumn Leaves played by Jazz Master Keith Jarrett.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=io1o1Hwpo8Y


I was watching the Keith Jarrett "Autumn Leaves" which was great.

I happened to notice one of my favorite singers, Eva Cassidy, with a version posted on the right. Even tho' it's guitar and voice, there is a piano in the background...it's really lovely. Eva died tragically of melanoma in her early 30's.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7-haKkFnT8&feature=related

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#1240587 - 07/30/09 09:19 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: Nikalette]
dave solazzo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/30/09
Posts: 160
Loc: syracuse ny
hey nikalette,

i think i heard that eva cassidy version a while back. there is a nice little piano solo in there, right? i'm going to go listen to that again.

the jarrett version is wonderful too! what a beautiful piano tone.
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#1240601 - 07/30/09 09:34 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: dave solazzo]
dave solazzo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/30/09
Posts: 160
Loc: syracuse ny
hey btw,

i was just listening to that jarrett version of autumn leaves. at the very end he quotes another tune. it's a bit more than just a quote because he actually goes into the changes of the other tune for a few seconds.

just a little trivia: so what's the quoted tune?

any takers? smile



Edited by dave solazzo (07/30/09 09:53 PM)
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#1240612 - 07/30/09 09:53 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: dave solazzo]
Nikalette Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/08
Posts: 1074
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: dave solazzo
hey nikalette,

i think i heard that eva cassidy version a while back. there is a nice little piano solo in there, right? i'm going to go listen to that again.

the jarrett version is wonderful too! what a beautiful piano tone.



Yes it is a lovely piano solo. She has some good musicians playing with her on her albums. Now I have to listen again to Keith Jarrett and figure out what you referenced.

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#1240619 - 07/30/09 10:00 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: Nikalette]
dave solazzo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/30/09
Posts: 160
Loc: syracuse ny
nikalette,

he goes into the quote at about 7:25.



Edited by dave solazzo (07/30/09 10:01 PM)
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#1240624 - 07/30/09 10:06 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: dave solazzo]
Elssa Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/15/05
Posts: 1486
Loc: NY
Hi all,

I don't use much walking bass either, mostly just for variety here and there, usually in the bridge. I like to use some chords along with single notes in the right hand, though, to fill it out a little while playing a simple walking bass line with the left hand.

Don't Get Around Much Anymore
http://www.box.net/shared/2kcdbnveig

Quote:
To me the more important skill is the Bossa Nova Latin Bass line (1 and 5 of chord only). That would get used more often.

I agree, the Bossa Nova bass line can be used in so many different types/styles of songs, not just Latin. I'm using it for the song "Watch What Happens" for example.

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#1240646 - 07/30/09 10:33 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: dave solazzo]
Nikalette Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/08
Posts: 1074
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: dave solazzo
hey btw,

i was just listening to that jarrett version of autumn leaves. at the very end he quotes another tune. it's a bit more than just a quote because he actually goes into the changes of the other tune for a few seconds.

just a little trivia: so what's the quoted tune?

any takers? smile



How about "Speak Low?"

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#1240657 - 07/30/09 10:52 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: dave solazzo]
Nikalette Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/08
Posts: 1074
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: dave solazzo
nikalette,

he goes into the quote at about 7:25.



Shhhh.....not so loud... wink

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#1240677 - 07/30/09 11:20 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: Nikalette]
dave solazzo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/30/09
Posts: 160
Loc: syracuse ny
yes, speak low! exactly!

isn't it really nice how he plays a little bit of it there at end?


Edited by dave solazzo (07/30/09 11:22 PM)
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#1240678 - 07/30/09 11:24 PM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: jazzwee]
Riddler Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 548
Loc: Florida
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
....
... Knotty, don't forget "Oleo". Very good for two hands...


Jazzwee,

Do you happen to remember what fingering you used in the left hand for Oleo? I never found fingering I was comfortable with.

Thanks,

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


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#1240703 - 07/31/09 12:36 AM Re: Jazz Study Group: Autumn Leaves, ATTYA, etc. [Re: Riddler]
jazzwee Online   content
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 6990
Loc: So. California
Riddler, I don't know if my LH fingering is the best but the most difficult part is the triplet. Let's see if I remember....


A Section (LH Fingering)
4 2 4 1
2 1 2 4
(2 3 2) 1
5 3 2
2 4 1 2 4 2
2 4
2 1 3 2
4 2 4 1
2 1 2 3 4
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