Improvising over "Scrapple From The Apple"

Dave Cooper has posted a thorough write up of things to think about when preparing to improvise over "Scrapple From the Apple." In particular, it's a good idea to spend time working out different approaches over the bridge. See his article for ideas.

All-Star Jazz & Gospel Festival Choir Workshop & Performance... lead by national artist Carmen Lundy and local artists Leotha and Tamera Stanley

All-Star Jazz & Gospel Festival Choir Workshop & Performance

June 13-21, 2013

Program Leaders 

  • World-class jazz vocalist, composer, arranger, and multi-instrumentalist Carmen Lundy, the headline performer at this year’s Isthmus Jazz Festival
  • Iconic Madison gospel musicians Leotha and Tamera Stanley

Program Design

Carmen Lundy

  • Under Carmen Lundy’s direction, and using one of her original compositions and arrangements, participants will learn how to craft a jazz vocal sound by refining color, shape, groove, and mood.
  • Under Leotha and Tamera Stanley’s direction, and using an original composition of Mr. Stanley’s, participants will learn techniques of gospel singing in the traditional manner, as the song is taught without any written music and stylized to create the gospel sound.
  • After rehearsals and the workshop session, the choir will perform both compositions before a live audience at the 2013 Isthmus Jazz Festival.
  • To maximize their learning, participants will be expected to individually prepare their parts for each composition prior to the workshop.

When and Where

  • Rehearsal: Thursday, June 13, 6:30-9pm, Mt. Zion Baptist Church, 2019 Fisher Street, Madison
  • Workshop: Thursday, June 20, 6:30 -9:30pm, Mt. Zion Baptist Church, 2019 Fisher Street, Madison
  • Performance: Friday, June 21, 6 pm, UW Memorial Union Terrace

Participant Application and Selection Process

  • Madison area choirs and choral groups will send selected members and/or directors to represent their group.


  • $25 per person, payable in advance
  • Scholarships are available

Registration Process

  • Complete the registration form (request form and copies of songs at  and send it, with your fee (check payable to “Madison Music Collective”), to Laurie Lang, 3014 Dianne Drive, Middleton, WI 53562 or pay by PayPal by donating $25 at and attaching your registration form to an email directed to  Registrations will be accepted through day’s end, Thursday, June 6, 2013.

For more workshop information:  Contact Laurie Lang, (608) 833-2200,

For more about Carmen Lundy

Madison Music Collective, PO Box 2096, Madison, WI53701-2096

Coming soon: "Carmen Lundy Jazz Ahead" A Madison Showcase and Workshop, June 21, 2013

                     Jazz Ahead: Madison Showcase and Workshop

June 21, 2013

“Betty Carter’s Jazz Ahead” is the KennedyCenter’s prestigious international jazz residency, performance and composition program that brings together outstanding, emerging jazz artist-composers in their mid-teens to age 25 for tutelage by an outstanding faculty of jazz artist-educators who coach and counsel them, helping to polish their performance, composing, and arranging skills.  Carmen Lundy, the headline performer at this year’s Isthmus Jazz Festival, has served as a “Jazz Ahead” faculty member for many years.  As part of her upcoming visit to Madison, she will distill the “Jazz Ahead” model into a half-day workshop for a group of emerging jazz musicians of all ages.


About the Program Leader  

Carmen Lundy is a world-class jazz vocalist.  Her expertise goes beyond her jazz and operatic vocal techniques, as she is also an esteemed composer, arranger, and multi-instrumentalist.  Ms. Lundy has managed the near-impossible feat of maintaining a 30+ year career with mostly self-penned material.  She has recorded 12 CDs as a leader, and has performed and recorded with jazz luminaries like Ray Barretto, Kenny Barron, Mulgrew Miller, Terri Lyne Carrington, Bobby Watson, Roy Hargrove, Jimmy Cobb, Ron Carter, Marian McPartland, Regina Carter, Steve Turre, Geri Allen, Robert Glasper and the late Kenny Kirkland.  For more about Carmen Lundy, visit and view videos of her in performance at

Program Design

  • Phase I: The Showcase (Noon – 2 PM).  In the showcase, each soloist or group will perform one of three pre-selected compositions by Ms. Lundy, using their own approach and arrangement.  Participants will prepare by studying and rehearsing their chosen Lundy composition prior to the program day, with charts and mp3 files provided in advance by Madison Music Collective.  Each soloist or group will receive encouragement, constructive and instructive feedback from Ms. Lundy and her pianist, Anthony Wonsey.  The Showcase will be conducted before an audience of outside observers, i.e., anyone who would enjoy and benefit from observing such a special clinic.
  • Phase 2: The Creative Workshop (2:00 – 4:00 PM).  The workshop will be an exploratory time directed by Ms. Lundy and Mr. Wonsey, in which participants will experiment using the 3 prepared Lundy compositions. All participants will be ready to play or listen during this session.  Lundy and Wonsey will call forth various combinations of instruments/vocalists to play with style, mood, sound, arrangement ideas, color, and wherever else the spirit takes them. It will be a time musical investigation into new territories of creativity.

When and Where

  • Friday, June 21, 2013, Noon – 4:00 PM, OvertureCenter for the Arts, Rotunda Stage (lower level)


  • $25 per person, payable in advance
  • Scholarships are available

Madison Music Collective, PO Box 2096, Madison, WI53701-2096

Participant Application and Selection Process

  • We invite only serious students and emerging jazz artists (young, old, and in-between) who want to expand their approach to music making and creating.  Enrollment is limited to a total of 40 participants.
  • Prospective participants must complete and submit the application (request form and copies of songs at and submit it with their fee (check payable to “Madison Music Collective”) to workshop coordinator Laurie Lang by day’s end Friday, June 7, 2013.
  • Musicians may apply as a solo musician, or in duos or trios.
  • Applications may be submitted electronically to or mailed to 3014 Dianne Drive, Middleton, WI53562.  Either way, applications must be received by day’s end Friday, June 7, 2013.
  • Applicants will be notified of their acceptance by Wednesday, June 12, 2013, and those who are not accepted will have their application fee refunded.

For more workshop information:  Contact Laurie Lang, (608) 833-2200,

Scrapple From The Apple

is the tune for our next jam on May 5th. Dave Cooper will be playing trumpet/flugelhorn and our educator. He'll have some material to help you with this tune shortly. In the meantime you can get a head-start with the videos (including a playalong) from LearnJazzStandards.

Tune for next time will be up soon

It was good to see all the new faces at today's jam. In addition to some of Dan's students we haven't seen in a while, we had a group of 4 students from one of Johannes' classes. In one of his "Intro to Jazz" type courses it is a requirement for his students to attend and play at a jazz jam. This was the 1st time any of these young people had performed at a jazz jam. They did great! We may have another group join us at our next jam in 2 weeks.

Speaking of next time, we finally completed the schedule of educators and house band performers for the next 8 sessions. It is up on the schedule page. Tunes aren't listed yet but we'll have the tune for next time posted within  2 days. Sorry for the delay.

IMW - hosted Fearless Improviser: Hanah Jon Taylor - April 14

It was rainy, cold and damp outside but inside "Jazz on a Sunday" Hosted by MMC, MTL and The Brink Lounge had a warm and inviting feast of improvised, exploratory, musical food served by Hanah Jon Taylor and his group (listed below).

IMW had fun interviewing the group about the music making they had just done and inviting several musicians to the stage to join Hanah's group in experimenting a bit more.

Thanks to GREAT musicians with generous hearts to share their creative voices in words and sounds!!!

Hanah jon Taylor



“Hanah Jon Taylor lives and breathes the history of creative improvised music….Taylor has internalized the jazz tradition and carved his niche as a composer, bandleader, and fearless improviser.”  Chris DuPré

Hanah Jon Taylor is arguably the preeminent saxophonist and flutist in Madison jazz and a leading catalyst, organizer and educator in inter-arts programming. Taylor was founder and director of The Madison Center for the Creative and Cultural Arts, which offered concerts and multi-arts classes.  Taylor also directed Freedom Fest, which presented such world-class performers as Archie Shepp, Sonny Fortune, Richard Davis, Cecil McBee, Edward Wilkerson, acclaimed Chicago singer Dee Alexander, and Corey Wilkes and Roscoe Mitchell of the legendary Art Ensemble of Chicago.

With a career spanning over 30 years, Mr. Taylor has appeared with songwriter/folk artist Richie Havens, percussionist Steve McCall, the Colson Unity Troupe, saxophonist Roscoe Mitchell, pianist Jobic LeMasson, the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble, bassists Rafael Garrett and Malachi Favors, and the Great Black Music Ensemble of Chicago.

Taylor moved to Madison years ago from Chicago and has been a long-time member of the influential Chicago-based Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM). He has performed worldwide with musicians ranging from Woodstock-famous singer-songwriter Richie Havens to Nina Simone, Miles Davis, and many of the AACM’s leading lights. Taylor has a substantial reputation in Europe, Asia and the Americas.  Today Taylor is a music professor at the Madison Media Institute.


Percussionist Dushun Mosley, is based in Chicago, has toured extensively as a soloist, in duets, trios and big bands. He has been called upon to do numerous engagements in social clubs, music halls and festivals in cities throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, the Caribbean, Africa and Japan. These performances have contributed to his distinguished reputation as a forerunner in this generation of innovators. His style is Traditional Jazz, Blues and Funk in a combo band setting, but feels equally at home pushing big bands and Orchestras' to their limit.


Alex is a guitarist, bassist, oudist and creative musician living on the South side of Chicago.  He has his B.A. in music from The University of Chicago.  Alex joined IMW in 2010 and has taught at Taylor Park, Fuller Park, CICS Northtown and CICS Bucktown,  He also teaches with the Hyde Park Suzuki Institute, as well as privately.  He plays with artists including David Boykin, Nicole Mitchell, Paul Hartsaw, Avreeayl Ra, MOSAIK, and the Middle East Music Ensemble at the University of Chicago.


Jim Baker of Chicago is an exciting keyboardist who has jammed with some of the best in the world, from Chicago flautist and bandleader Nicole Mitchell to Sonic Youth guitarist Thurston Moore, of Massachusetts.

How Insensitive - Improvisation Guide for April 21 Jam

from Dan Wallach, Jam Educator

This week’s featured tune is Insensatez or in English, How Insensitive.  This tune was written by the great composer Antonio Carlos Jobim.  He loosely based his tune on the wonderful Romantic period composer Fredrick Chopin’s prelude No. 4.  Because of this the harmony of this tune is both non-conventional and complex.  That being said, I will suggest a protocol for approaching this tune in various steps.  Each step becomes more complex.  Any of the tiers I will suggest can be used as an approach on their own.

  1. First, as I always suggest, listen to several recordings of this tune including the original.
    One of my favorite recordings is the one featuring Stan Getz.
  2. Especially on this tune, it is a necessity to learn the melody well to help you keep your place in the form.  Practice singing the tune on “la” -- unless your Portuguese is strong, then sing the lyrics.  Keeping the form of any tune in the initial learning stages should be a primary goal.
  3. As the harmony takes many twists and turns, playing a solo that is strongly based on the tune is a fine path.  Use your knowledge of the chords to embellish the melody.  Remember that some of our greatest jazz performers often played with the original rhythms nearly as much as adding extra tones as a method of improvising.  Rhythm is equally as important as non-melody tones.
  4. If you feel comfortable doing a chord-by-chord analysis, do so. Look for familiar chord progressions.  We will use the following progression, How Insensitive Chords, as it is straightforward without extra substitutions or turn-arounds.

I hear this tune as being in D minor.  That being said, the first two bars are the tonic, and the second two move to the dominant, 1-5.  The next four bars do the same thing a whole step down.  The next four bars, I would read the chords literally without trying to find a harmonic link.  A good argument can be made for the Bb being the sixth. The next four bars are a familiar cycle of a minor 2-5-1.  The next four bars I believe are best analyzed at face value instead of looking for a familiar progression.

The next four are the familiar pattern of 6-5-1 in a minor key. The next two bars seem to be F7 on their own followed by a 2-5 to A minor.  The final four bars are a repetition of the 6-5-1 pattern.

I look forward to seeing all of you at the Jam!