This video lesson covers how I begin with every jazz piano student. Swing scales are great because they enable students to focus on their groove and time-feel from the start. Rather than load students up with harmony and theory information, prioritizing the groove should sustain itself through the whole process of learning to play jazz and modern music. Here’s how we start:
This lesson works through how to add chords to a melody using the circle of fifths or V-of concepts. This is useful for improvising. But it’s also great for performing classical, popular and jazz styles.
There is a lot of info here so take your time and allow it to find it’s place:
When I started teaching in Seattle, most of my first students came from friends who were piano teachers. They sent a lot of kids and adults my way who were ready to quit lessons and/or music. The main reason that these students were at their endpoint had to do with creativity (or lack thereof).
Phrasing often gets overlooked when we learn to improvise. This video covers the basics of phrasing on Twinkle, Twinkle and the opening passage of a Mozart Sonata. There are a few splices in the video as the camera kept shutting off – I’m still learning to use the new gear! I hope you enjoy it.