A high school student recently asked me if I did a lot of focused listening. I sensed he asked because he was wondering if it was worth all the work. He had just returned from the highly regarded Interlochen jazz camp where they emphasized listening to recordings over and over while focusing on a single […]
I love this video. If you haven’t seen it you have to check it out. How many musicians can you identify? Is this lick in your bag of tricks? It wasn’t in mine, but just for fun I used it several times tonight and it sounded good.
Update: Patrick has moved the class time for Sunday April 3rd to 5-6:30pm. He will be covering the Miles Davis solo on Blues by Five. Here’s an exciting development: local saxophonist Patrick Breiner is now teaching classes in solo transcription and how to apply musical elements learned from solos. Patrick’s classes will be weekly (when […]
Because of copyright concerns I won’t be putting up sheet music anymore. This won’t be a problem if you learn tunes off of a recording, which is by far the best method. It’s good ear training and you memorize the tune in a way that makes it stick. Nonetheless there are times when you may […]
Here’s a good quote: “Leaving enough space in your solos isn’t just a good idea, it’s MANDATORY. Otherwise the rhythm section can’t even respond to you. When you play with a player who doesn’t leave enough space then it’s a fight just to find a way to play with them.”
Here’s a video on learning jazz licks that really resonates with me. For a long time I collected music, loads of it, with the dream that some day I’d transcribe it and know tons of licks. I’d learn a cool lick but rapidly forget it because I was on to the next cool lick. I worried that life wasn’t long […]
Saxophonist and animator Allen Mezquida’s take on the jazz life….
At age 25 I began a college education. Determined to be a good student I sought out books on study techniques, applied the concepts and did well. Likewise, when I became serious about the saxophone I searched for the most efficient ways to practice. This information is not so easy to find. After years of […]
Molly Gebrian is a violist pursuing a doctorate in music and cognitive neuroscience at Rice University. If you’ve ever been pressed for practice time, unable to practice because of injury or travel, or just interested in practicing as efficiently as possible, then you should read her article summarizing recent research in this area. I’ve incorporated […]
This is just too cool. Recently, I came across a reference to a dissertation by Thomas Owens, “Charlie Parker: Techniques of Improvisation. Although obscure, it is considered by some to be the most comprehensive and in-depth analysis of Charlie Parker’s style. Owens transcribes 250 solos and extracts out 100 of the most used licks. I […]