Video: Ray Charles “What I’d Say” — Practice your blues licks with this one!

Hey!

If you want to get better at your blues piano playing, who better to learn from than Ray Charles? Try playing this video while throwing in your own blues licks on top.  Also try to imitate or paraphrase some of Brother Ray’s.

Here’s some insight to help you:

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Blues Lick #6: “Locked up”

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This is a really exciting technique for what I like to call the “Big Blues” sound.  By “Big Blues,” I mean dramatic, exciting, full, like you might hear from a jazz big band.  This kind of lick also works great for building to a climax in your “blues story” (a good solo usually tells a story).
The name of this lick, “Locked Up,” ain’t necessarily because what you’re saying with your fingers might be a story about going to jail. In this video, “Locked up” actually refers to the core idea of the lesson, something called “locked rhythm.”

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Soloing Tips: Using the Pitch-Bend Wheel on Electronic Keyboards (part one)

The video lesson below is for keyboard players who want to “properly” use the pitch-bend wheel on their electronic synths or other keyboard.  By “properly,” I mean that you can’t just randomly roll that pitch wheel around and expect your keyboard licks to make any sense (outside of cartoonish sound effects).

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First, the following links are sponsored AD’s. When you buy anything on Amazon via any of the AD’s on my site, I get a small amount for the referral. This helps me keep this site alive, and free to the public. Thank you!

The keyboards in this list are personally recommended by me. They are Yamaha keyboards, which I swear by (no affiliation there).

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How to improvise in modal jazz: Understanding “So What” by Miles Davis

Hello friends!

This is a brief introduction to the idea of “modal jazz.”  We’re going to look at probably the most famous example of modal jazz, a tune called “So What,” by Miles Davis and Bill Evans.

First, the following links are sponsored ads. When you buy anything on Amazon via any of the ads on my site, I get a small amount for the referral. This helps me keep this site alive, and free to the public. Thank you!

The keyboards in this list are personally recommended by me. They are Yamaha keyboards, which I swear by (no affiliation there).

Continue reading “How to improvise in modal jazz: Understanding “So What” by Miles Davis”

Jazz improv practice: A nice drill using “approach tones”

Here’s a nice jazz drill, to give you practice on:

(1) Adding interest to your melody lines,  by sometimes preceding the “target tone(s)” of a chord with “approach tones;” and,

(2) increased mastery of any given scale, especially as it relates to the underlying chords.

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