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#2006264 - 12/29/12 09:50 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: kiedysktos.]
Mark Polishook Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/29/12
Posts: 604
Loc: Leicester, UK
jazzwee ... my opinion is FH is the most innovative pianist in jazz today. who knows? smile and the sound FH gets from the piano is otherworldy! ... i see we're on the same page with that. it's a very nice page smile

custardapple ... yes, as you describe it that's, you've really said it PERFECTLY. in the learning space STAY ON THE BENCH (as you say!) until you've gotten an expressive and meaningful bit. ... and the bar 1 and bar 2 scheme you describe is perfect. you might look at it (metaphorically) as bar 1 is give the call - and bar 2 is give the response. (call and response)

your delayed resolution experiment sounds great too! ... it's perfectly fine if your time is a little off. for now you have the sound of the line and how it stretched out the harmony ... next step is get the sound of those things along with the time feel you want. (and then repeat as necessary smile




Edited by printer1 (12/29/12 09:56 PM)

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#2006340 - 12/30/12 03:21 AM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: kiedysktos.]
Cudo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 130
Loc: Heidelberg, Germany
Originally Posted By: kiedysktos.

I play sequences using avoids also. When it is on 1 or in other important place, I alter it (raise the fourth etc.), but in other places I leave it as it is. But it is easier without avoids.

Using avoids as important melody notes implies the oposite function of the actual harmony. This could be contradictory.

There is almost no standard song without sequenced melody phrases. Sequencing is a very powerful tool in elaborating melody lines. That for it has to be practiced in any possible manner.

Originally Posted By: kiedysktos.
It still sounds quite overwhelming devoting 50% of practice time to play a few phrases across the songs. For me it's qite tiring to do so for 15 minutes, not speaking about an hour or two smile But I admit it requires such an effort it has to be very fruitful.

I would design these exercises in a musically way and vary the sequenzes slightly. So it won´t sound like an etude.

Originally Posted By: kiedysktos.
I also don't catch the connection between this 'linear construction' approach and playing meaningful melodies,

Things become meaningful when you repeat them. If you are able to reapeat something transposed to another key function or vary it only in a rhythmically sense it becomes meaningful.

Originally Posted By: kiedysktos.
I suspect this way of practice leads to such a freedom that it's much easier to play phrases from your head and not stopping because of difficulties (technical, rhythmic or harmonic ones).
Yes.

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#2006577 - 12/30/12 02:18 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: Cudo]
chrisbell Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/07
Posts: 1332
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
Originally Posted By: Cudo
There is almost no standard song without sequenced melody phrases. Sequencing is a very powerful tool in elaborating melody lines. That for it has to be practiced in any possible manner.
.................
Things become meaningful when you repeat them. If you are able to reapeat something transposed to another key function or vary it only in a rhythmically sense it becomes meaningful.

Well said.
_________________________

I never play anything the same way once.

https://soundcloud.com/chrisb/sets
https://www.youtube.com/user/djboing/videos

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#2007050 - 12/31/12 12:52 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: chrisbell]
jjo Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/09/08
Posts: 624
Loc: Chicago
Just want to add that I'm a huge Fred Hersch fan, as well. I've been lucky to see him hear in Chicago twice in the last couple of years.

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#2011461 - 01/08/13 09:48 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: Mark Polishook]
custard apple Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/09
Posts: 2292
Loc: Sydney
Originally Posted By: printer1


your delayed resolution experiment sounds great too! ... it's perfectly fine if your time is a little off. for now you have the sound of the line and how it stretched out the harmony ... next step is get the sound of those things along with the time feel you want. (and then repeat as necessary smile




I'm getting quite comfortable with this now using eighth-notes in my RH. Could I please confirm that delayed resolution is mostly used in solo if it is not agreed beforehand with the bassist ?
Normally the bassist would still be playing G7 over 4 beats, C maj over 4 beats. Whereas if I were to continue in G7alt, it could sometimes sound too out if the bassist had already switched to C maj ?

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#2011799 - 01/09/13 04:35 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: kiedysktos.]
Mark Polishook Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/29/12
Posts: 604
Loc: Leicester, UK
hi CA!

it's a very common contemporary technique and it's perfectly fine to do it in an ensemble where the bass is plsying the normal changes.

HOWEVER, it does take trial and error to find where you can use it when soloing with a bass player. a really good bass player - when they hear you doing it - will simplify the bassline. what happens in that case is the delayed resolution lines get played (by the pianist) over the roots and fifths of the bass. It's a cery bice sound.

Just to mention another way to look at it ... in classical music there's a thingy called a suspension' ... which is a prepared dissonance on a strong beat ... that's a very simple example of a delayed resolution. this stuff is all over classical repertoire ..... beethoven, bach, mozart, etc..

another example .. if you google 'herbie hancock seven steps to heaven transcription' you'll get a link to, well, a transcription of hh playing SSTH! there are some great examples in that solo of delayed resolutions. and also that solo has great exampkes where HH anticipates an upcoming chord. so for example, if a Gm7 to C7 is upcoming, HG will get to it before the bass does. that tension he creates resolves when the bass player catches up with HH, so to speak. you can find this all over the place in the omnibook .... the chord might be V7 leading to I and CP plays over the V chord to show he's already arrives at the I chord!

of course all depends on the judgement of your ear. i'm guessing too that as you get some fluency with delayed resolutions you're finding it easier to also play directly on the chord changes ....

hope this helps!

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#2011899 - 01/09/13 08:33 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: kiedysktos.]
custard apple Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/09
Posts: 2292
Loc: Sydney
Hey Prints
Thanks for your cool answer, it's very insightful coming from someone who knows both the piano and bass.
Your answer illustrates very well to me how anticipation of an upcoming chord or progression can help to delay the resolution.

1. I've now bought Seven Steps to Heaven and slowed it down. Do you agree that in the 2nd A sec of Herbie's solo, that he anticipates the G min 7, C7 not just one bar ahead but virtually for the whole of this section ?
I also like how the bassist waits until the final bar of this section to resolve.

2. Yes this delayed resolution makes it easier for me to do a long line, and keep the line both thematic and interesting-sounding.

3. With your Bird example, I just looked up the Omnibook transcription for Now's The Time. Yes I can find Bird playing the C7 as if he's already arrived at the tonic F.

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#2011941 - 01/09/13 09:45 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: custard apple]
Mark Polishook Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/29/12
Posts: 604
Loc: Leicester, UK
CA ... Very well done! The Omnibook has examples such as the one you've mentioned all over the place ... in just about every solo. Just once you've found one example, you'll find many!

IF I'm listening and looking at the same STTH as you (the original Miles Davis recording?) I' don't hear the WHOLE 2nd A section as you do. BUT .... HH definitely gets to the Gm chord early (in that 2nd A section) ... how early I'll leave to you as a question .. because different ears will interpret it in different ways ....

Definitely, he emphasises the F# to G in the first A section ... so that little bit may contribute to how you hear the 2nd A section. Much more important than whether you and I agree is just that you're asking yourself about what you hear ... and trying to explain it. That internal question/answer process is priceless ...

Here's the transcription if you haven't already found it it's a serious gem of a solo. If we only talked about the rhythms he's using (without any regard for pitch at all) we could still talk for quite a while!

http://armand.reynaud.free.fr/i_pdf/impro_herbie_mus.pdf

.... for building a fluid relaxed technique, it's worth it to play the solo VERY SLOWLY and WITH UTTER EXTREME RELAXATION. Very free and out of time is fine. Literally, let gravity drop your fingers to the the notes. When you can play the notes in a very relaxed and slow way without any thought at all of playing in tempo gradually then start to play in tempo. But slowly. Don't play any faster than a tempo at which you can maintain extreme relaxation. You might find it interesting to pick a phrase or two that you like and learn to sing them too ...

Hope this all helps!

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#2011942 - 01/09/13 09:47 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: Mark Polishook]
Mark Polishook Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/29/12
Posts: 604
Loc: Leicester, UK
And CA ... very nicely said ...

"2. Yes this delayed resolution makes it easier for me to do a long line, and keep the line both thematic and interesting-sounding."

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#2012084 - 01/10/13 05:23 AM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: Mark Polishook]
custard apple Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/09
Posts: 2292
Loc: Sydney
Originally Posted By: printer1


.... for building a fluid relaxed technique, it's worth it to play the solo VERY SLOWLY and WITH UTTER EXTREME RELAXATION. Very free and out of time is fine. Literally, let gravity drop your fingers to the the notes. When you can play the notes in a very relaxed and slow way without any thought at all of playing in tempo gradually then start to play in tempo. But slowly. Don't play any faster than a tempo at which you can maintain extreme relaxation. You might find it interesting to pick a phrase or two that you like and learn to sing them too ...

Hope this all helps!



Thanks printer for the transcription and advice. I'm looking forward to working on it a bit each day.
I'm actually in the process of exploring exciting possibilities to my major chords. HH's treatment of the F maj 7 in the 2nd A section is exquisite.

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#2012900 - 01/11/13 03:15 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: kiedysktos.]
36251 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/12/10
Posts: 709
I've enjoyed reading this thread and just thought of a jazz artist that's all about sequencing when he solos - Oliver Nelson. Just thought I'd throw his name in the fray smile
_________________________
AG N2, CP4, GK MK & MP

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#2013099 - 01/11/13 09:28 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: 36251]
custard apple Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/09
Posts: 2292
Loc: Sydney
Thanks 36251. I hadn't heard of Oliver Nelson before and I've just finished listening to Stolen Moments on you-tube. His use of sequences was very soulful, there were some really nice triads in there.

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#2013201 - 01/12/13 03:43 AM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: kiedysktos.]
Mark Polishook Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/29/12
Posts: 604
Loc: Leicester, UK
oliver nelson's improvisation book


http://ebookbrowse.com/45074734-oliver-nelson-improvisation-for-saxophone-pdf-d293950896

on amazon ..

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Patterns-Improvi...9973&sr=8-2

From the preface:

A sequence ís a repetition of a pattern on different scale steps. As long as the ori-
ginal pattern is correct, any irregularities which might appear in its sequence are
justified. -

If the above statement is true, then the music of Bach, Beethoven, Bartok, Charlie
Parker, John Coltrane, even some of todays electronic music is constructed much in the
same manner. The use of sequential musical devices is not by any means dry and mechan-
ical, but can be a useful aid in the art of improvisation, with or without inspiration
and immense natural talent.

Inspiration to a 20th Century Composer is nothing more than working with his materials
until the pieces fit properly. Natural talent to John Coltrane is long and tedious
hours of practice and a great insight and understanding of the materials of music.

.... AMAZING what's out there in google land!

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#2013270 - 01/12/13 08:04 AM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: Mark Polishook]
chrisbell Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/11/07
Posts: 1332
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
Originally Posted By: printer1

Many thanks for that link printer1.

Originally Posted By: printer1
. . . the music of Bach, Beethoven, Bartok, Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, even some of todays electronic music is constructed much in the
same manner. The use of sequential musical devices is not by any means dry and mechanical, but can be a useful aid in the art of improvisation, with or without inspiration and immense natural talent.
Oh no . . don't give away one of the best secrets of improv/composition . . .! Oh darn it . . now "everybody" will be able to sound good . .
grin
_________________________

I never play anything the same way once.

https://soundcloud.com/chrisb/sets
https://www.youtube.com/user/djboing/videos

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#2013344 - 01/12/13 10:20 AM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: Mark Polishook]
kiedysktos. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 424
Loc: Europe, Poland
Originally Posted By: printer1
keidyskos, it's worth saying more than a few times that "linear" is just a jargon word that's long been used by musical theorists. in fact, it's been used all over the place.

http://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/gabo-linear-construction-no-1-t00191

i'm not saying this to say the LC method isn't worth doing. If you want to do it and/or it you've been doing it and it works for you, well, then GREAT! Get going with it or keep at it! My point is these kinds of jargon names sometimes obscure essential stuff .. which you kind of point out in your post: "i ... don't catch the connection between this 'linear construction' approach and playing meaningful melodies."

Yes. Playing meaningful melodies is EXACTLY what you want!

i'm not saying at all the LC method won't lead you to meaningful melodies. What i am saying is trying to figure out HOW that method leads you to meaningful melodies or just structuring your time along the lines of that particular method may take longer than you want need to get to the "meaningful" melody part .... The thing is. You can be working with meaningful melodies right from the start!

For example. Transcription, which has been mentioned and described very well in this thread basically includes learning to hear a solo, learning to notate it, learning to play it, learning to analyse it, using it to inspire your creativity. And as you do all that you're DIRECTLY IN CONTACT WITH MEANINGFUL MELODIES!

Yet, Fred Hersch, who many consider to be at the apex in the jazz piano food chain (if you haven't heard FH, at least check out his recordings ... the last two are from live sets the Village Vanguard). He's said many times (interviews on the web) that he found no value in transcribing. So there you go. A major artist who didn't transcribe to learn jazz and has said he doesn't see the point in it. FH recommends instead very, very, VERY serious directed listening to all the different versions of jazz repertoire that great artists have produced. That is pretty serious!

Or, instead of transcribing, sing great solos (sing along with the recording). Sing, as in: FOCUS ON THE SOLO AND SING IT LIKE PLANET EARTH DEPENDS ON THAT SKILL!

Or get out whatever classical scores you have. Mozart, Bach, Chopin, etc. They all wrote INCREDIBLY MEANINGFUL MELODIES! In most cases, with just a little of bit of creative phrasing, those melodies will work directly in jazz.

A great book about listening to and creating music is "The Listening Book: Discovering Your Own Music" by W.A. Mathieu (he has major credits including writing for Stan Kenton). The chapter in the book: "What should I practice?" He says: "It doesn't matter what you practice as long as your energy for it is HOT [... my emphasis ...]. It is the quality of your practice that matters ... "

Mathieu isn't saying just be unstructured and do whatever you want ... you gotta read the book to get that larger context and to see how he says it. But the point is this: If you have limited time (and most of us do), one good way to go is practice whatever you can put your whole 100% focus on. Get your mind, ear, and body RESONATE to when you practice. If your interest is in playing and creating meaningful melodies, then focus your practice right onto that. Find examples, in recordings, scores, transcriptions Work directly with them! Play them, sing them listen to them, copy them, transpose them, think about them, discuss them, quote them, Play them in all keys. Play the major ones in minor keys. Play the minor ones in major keys! Write counterpoint against them. Re-harmonize them. Take liberties with them. Learn them so they just about feel like you own them!

Work with meaningful melodies -- you'll soon be making them yourself.

Just my opinion ....

Hope this helps!





Thanks for that post! I wish I could just put all these valuable advices into work smile I'll try. One question about singing: do you think more about learning to sing bigger part, or rather taking two or four measures, but work with them much more?

I forgot to mention my influence in playing sequences - pianist Raphael Alcala. He is great teacher, and he presented playing solo in terms of tension-resolution: playing outside-inside or sequences-"tough compose" playing. In the last pair, sequence is played when you need more energy and structure for playing, and "tough compose" means creating more free bebop line. He was able to play nice flowing solo by playing one of these things alternately and commenting it on the fly. Especially he played sequences at the end of song parts or 8-bar phrases, where he gained so much energy, that he could consume it by playing literally any "tough compose" idea in the beginning of next part. That made me want to learn playing sequences in very fluent way.
_________________________
Roland FP-4

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#2013422 - 01/12/13 12:51 PM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: kiedysktos.]
Mark Polishook Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/29/12
Posts: 604
Loc: Leicester, UK
keidyskos,

the main thing is: whatever you're practicing - put 100% into it. the equation is:

short + focused > long w/no focus

about singing ... the ear is the link in the chain that usually needs more work. so WHAT you sing isn't as important as, well, singing! when you sing, don't worry about the sound of your voice - whether you like your sound or not ..., just sing in tune w/good phrasing, etc. IF and WHEN you can sing an interval or a piece of a phrase or a phrase or a longer line or an entire solo, then at that point you are HEARING it. that singing process will naturally start to shape how you play the piano. so as w/piano practice - it's QUALITY you want and not QUANTITY!

your teacher sounds great. he has HIS way. ... ummmmmmm, what's YOUR way? (that's not a question that has to be answered!) but it ia good question to think about! and intended with all respect!!!!!!!

hope this helps!


Edited by printer1 (01/12/13 01:10 PM)

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#2013749 - 01/13/13 12:59 AM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: kiedysktos.]
jawhitti Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/12
Posts: 235
I don't think you have to look any further than Bach's first two- part invention in C to see that sequences have been around a long time and that simple sequences can give rise to surprisingly sophisticated music. Anyone still in doubt should consult the Well-Tempered Clavier.

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#2014243 - 01/14/13 05:46 AM Re: linear construction in jazz and general practice routine [Re: kiedysktos.]
Mark Polishook Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/29/12
Posts: 604
Loc: Leicester, UK
If you're interested ... .. the music of Bach in particular and Baroque composers in general are a great starting place to see the how and why of sequences. If you (I mean the general 'you' ... anyone reading this who's looking for more inforrmation about sequence technique) google things like 'sequence technique music theory' you'll find a lot o easyf background information that might help you understand what you can find in Bach's music and that of other Baroque composers. It's well worth looking into this stuff .. it's also well worh learning to play ALL 15 of Bach's 2-part inventions. After that, go to the 3-part inventions. After that ... smile

If you love the patterns in Hanon excercises, it's worth knowing that Coltrane worked through them (on saxophone, of course).

Also, while Bach and Baroque composers are pretty much the first word in 'how to make sequences,' they are NOT at all the last word! IF you do start w/Bach but expand into really almost any style that comes after you'll get a very nice overview of sequence technique. You don't have to be exhaustive about it ... spend a few hours over a few weeks just to see that these great sources are out there. By COMPARING Bach, etc to others, you'll learn an amazing amount. Even if all you do is just compare a few measures 'here' to a few measures 'there.' AND, you'll be working DIRECTLY w/'meaningful melodies.'

OF COURSE, there are a million other ways, at least!, to learn and absorb all this same stuff ...

Hope this helps!




Edited by printer1 (01/14/13 05:48 AM)

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