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#2034389 - 02/16/13 05:49 PM *New* - Beginning Improvising using Modal Vamps w/Dave Frank
davefrank Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/26/09
Posts: 672
This in-depth master class can teach you to improvise) Designed for beginning improvisers, this class focuses on BREAKING THE IMPROV BARRIER using modal vamps. Free.


Blessings and keep swingin from NYC!

Piano & Music Accessories
#2034527 - 02/17/13 12:00 AM Re: *New* - Beginning Improvising using Modal Vamps w/Dave Frank [Re: davefrank]
jawhitti Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/12
Posts: 235
Nice. I'd like to hear more about moving between modes as in the way you moved between mixo and Phrygian in this vid. Are there rules of thumb on which mode transitions work better than others?

As an example if I play a single-note E in the LH and descend C to C Ionian in RH, then Eb in LH and C to C Dorian, then Db and C to C Phrygian then finally C and C to C Ionian it seems to work very well, I guess because going to Dorian and Phrygian take you progressively further from the "home" mode and then the last scale in Ionian feels kind of like a "modal resolution".

I found the above somewhat accidentally just screwing around with modes and would be interested in finding a way to put some structure around said screwing around to be more productive beyond "hmm, that sounded pretty cool".

#2034666 - 02/17/13 09:55 AM Re: *New* - Beginning Improvising using Modal Vamps w/Dave Frank [Re: davefrank]
jawhitti Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/12
Posts: 235
Oh, I have one tidbit to contribute. The popular song "Porcelain" by Moby is almost all a modal vamp. There are four chords in the vamp (Gm, Bb, Fm, Ab) but really they are just two - Gm7 and Bb combine to make Gm7 and Fm and Ab combine to make Fm7. The tinkly piano parts are Bb mixolydian.

Common to modal vamping there is no real "resolution" or diatonic progression' certainly nothin like a V-I cadence. Instead the tonal center is in distinct, which helps give the song its floating quality. It's a fun one to vamp on smile

#2043332 - 03/05/13 11:48 AM Re: *New* - Beginning Improvising using Modal Vamps w/Dave Frank [Re: davefrank]
Mark... Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/27/06
Posts: 4381
Loc: Jersey Shore
I've been toying with this and finally getting some interesting sound. My hand independence is still an issue, but like the vib you get out of it.

#2043337 - 03/05/13 11:58 AM Re: *New* - Beginning Improvising using Modal Vamps w/Dave Frank [Re: Mark...]
Dfrankjazz Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 179
Loc: NYC
You can try the easier vamps to start)

#2045207 - 03/08/13 06:04 PM Re: *New* - Beginning Improvising using Modal Vamps w/Dave Frank [Re: Dfrankjazz]
Ted Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 1522
Loc: Auckland, New Zealand
I applaud and entirely concur with your sentiment that everybody has the right to experience the ecstasy of personal improvisation. I would love to agree with you about older classically and academically trained players being able to embrace it. I wish it were true but I am rather afraid it isn't. I have tried it with players of tremendous learning and technique and it's like pulling teeth. Aside from those who acquire the habit in youth, and they are very few, improvisation is a completely foreign notion, either restricted to jazz or at best a sort of poor man's composition.

Surprisingly perhaps, as the sounds of most jazz do not excite me, I always emerge from your presentations full of ideas. Strictly periodic cells such as Jarrett's earlier five minute grinds, I usually fast forward through. Aperiodic, or better still "almost periodic" vamps, on the other hand, I find peculiarly exciting - remember Ives' remark about the stones in the orchard wall - difference within similarity.

Perhaps the fact of starting spontaneous creation is what really matters, the actual idiom, jazz, baroque or anything else being of secondary importance.

Your obvious delight in your music shines through, a brilliant exception to the procession of deadly serious "ought tos", "musts" and "shoulds" in the musical world.
"It is inadvisable to decline a dinner invitation from a plump woman." - Fred Hollows

#2045287 - 03/08/13 10:23 PM Re: *New* - Beginning Improvising using Modal Vamps w/Dave Frank [Re: davefrank]
Dfrankjazz Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 179
Loc: NYC
Hi Ted, thanks for writing and nice to meet you. I saw the 84 year young Barry Harris play yesterday, unbelievable about some jazz masters (Dick Hyman turned 86 today)they play to perfection in their mid-80's) Barry is an absolutely Divine individual, one of the great jazz pianists (underrated)of any age, and a peerless teacher and a beacon of light.

At the end of a GORGEOUS afternoon trio performance, he just said "jazz is beautiful".

Dave Frank

Edited by Dfrank (03/08/13 10:24 PM)

#2048682 - 03/15/13 11:29 AM Re: *New* - Beginning Improvising using Modal Vamps w/Dave Frank [Re: davefrank]
TromboneAl Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/12/04
Posts: 795
Loc: Northern, Northern California
Hey, Dave, interesting story about this:

Last night at our monthly piano party, I mentioned this modal vamp video, and demonstrated it. As soon as I mentioned your name, one of the other pianists, Jackie Hogan, said "Hey, I know Dave Frank! He taught me some jazz stuff a long time ago, and taught me the only jazz song I know, 'You Took Advantage of Me'".

That was a long time ago -- remember her?
- Al

My Book: Becoming a Great Sight-Reader -- or Not!
My Blog: The Year of Piano Sight-Reading

#2048685 - 03/15/13 11:46 AM Re: *New* - Beginning Improvising using Modal Vamps w/Dave Frank [Re: davefrank]
Dfrankjazz Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 179
Loc: NYC
oops..no..is she married to Hulk? He forced me to give him lessons from 88-90..



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