Chord Voicings for Jazz Piano (rootless, left-hand, Type B)

“Type B” Rootless Chord Voicings for Piano

“Rootless voicings” on piano (especially for left-hand support) are great for handling big jazz chords that normally can’t be covered by one hand alone. This video tutorial  shows you how to play a rich sounding II-V-I in the left hand, while allowing the bass player (or you, on another beat) to cover the root.

This is Part Two of a pair of lessons, covering “Type B” voicings.  The first lesson,  covering “Type A”  shows another way of executing the same idea, only with the notes in a different arrangement.

VIDEO

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

Here’s a nice jazzy 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.

As a result, the repeated act of mindfully (and not mindlessly) practicing this drill can increase your general facility with approach tones, as well as give you (possibly new) theoretical insights regarding chord-scale relationships. Dig? You’ll see.

Learn all 12 Minor & Minor 7th Chords – Today!

Hello Friends,

Today I’m happy to present the next lesson in my ongoing course, Chords 108.

Kent

Class Audience: Any musician who’s struggling to memorize the individual notes to all those dang chords on piano or keyboards, and looking for a solution.

Today: Learn how to immediately call up the notes to any of the twelve minor chords on a keyboard — without having to rely on rote memory.  This lesson applies to all twelve minor seventh chords as well.

Coming nextDominant seventh chords.

*This series is currently FREE to the public, but will soon be a premium members-only course.  Our members keep this site alive, and 100% ad-free.  Thanks to all!

How to Riff on Van Morrison’s “Moondance” – Part 1

 

Today we have two video lessons, either of which is a good introduction to a pretty simple notion, which I sometimes like to call the “melody machine.” With this, I’m not suggesting some big new original conception. On the contrary,  the concept I’m calling the melody machine is about as old as music itself.

If that nickname sounds a little gimmicky, it’s really not meant to be. I actually do call this device a “melody machine,” in my own thinking, part of an ongoing process of internalizing my favorite composition devices. Also, it’s fun to say, just like saying “Lollapalooza” or “Isn’t she pleasant?”

In a nutshell, this lesson shows you certain ways of using an underlying chord progression as a “thought generator” for creating melodic material.

First:

How to Riff on Van Morrison’s Moondance – Part 1

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Free Piano Chord Catalog – useful reference for my “Chords 108” series

Hello Friends!

Here’s a free downloadable piano chord catalog, which I recently put together, for all visitors and members.

Students: For anyone reading and watching my series called  Chords 108, this can serve as a companion chord catalog for quick reference (specifically, for double-checking your new chord memory skills) .

Chords are listed alphabetically. Each chord is spelled out by using a simple image (consisting of dots on a keyboard, indicating which keys/notes make up the chord in question).

Important: This piano chord book can be useful to any musician, not just to those who are studying ‘Chords 108.’


In a nutshell, all the standard three and four-note chords are illustrated.


LIST OF ALL CHORD TYPEs PICTURED IN THIS BOOK

Major triads (all)

Minor triads (all)

Major 7th chords (all)

Minor 7th chords (all)

Dominant 7th chords (all)

Diminished triads (all)

Diminished 7th chords (all)

Half-diminished 7th chords (‘Minor-7 flat-5’) (all)

Augmented triads (all)


Now, when you see all those chords (over 108) in this collection, don’t be overwhelmed, because we are not learning any chords by rote in Chords 108.  Instead, students are mastering a simple technique for calling up the notes of any standard chord immediately in one’s mind – using no outside references.

That’s why this book is optional; however, it can serve as an excellent study aid, especially to check the chords that you’re building mentally, against their picture entries.

Free Chords 108 Reference Catalog (PDF).

 

 

Eastern Scales, Relative Minor, and The Educated Guess

Fellow Theory Geeks,

Even among some good musicians, music theory is occasionally regarded as more of a “nice to know” thing.  Interesting place to visit, but they don’t want to hang around too long.

By contrast, I am shameless enough – dare I say, proud enough – to put forth that I am a music theory GEEK. I like staying “all up in theory land,” and often.

Music theory teaches us WHAT works, and also what CAN WORK.  And, if it AIN’T WORKING, it’s usually easier to know WHY, because you possess a systematic command of how rhythm, melody, and harmony work together.

Notice I put rhythm first. Too often neglected — but I put it first in my musical thinking. More on that in other posts.

OK…If you’ve read this far, I guess we have a quorum! Two geeks is always a quorum in my experience. Partly because it’s so hard to find a third geek, on short notice. Anyway welcome, can I get you some coffee? Orange Julius?*

Continue reading “Eastern Scales, Relative Minor, and The Educated Guess”

Learn all 12 DOMINANT-7th Chords Today

Hello Friends,

Today I’m happy to present the next lesson in my ongoing course, Chords 108.

Class Audience: Any musician who’s struggling to memorize the individual notes to all those dang chords on piano or keyboards, and looking for a solution.

Today: Learn how to immediately call up the notes to any of the twelve DOMINANT-7th chords on a keyboard — without having to rely on rote memory.  

Coming nextDiminished chords.

*This lesson is part of the premium ALL-ACCESS  series called Chords  108.  Our all-access members keep this site alive, and 100% ad-free.

Thanks to all!

THE VIDEO (non-public)

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Learn all 12 Major & all 12 Maj7 Chords by Pattern (not by rote)

Today I’m happy to present the next lesson in my ongoing series, Piano Chords 108.

Class Audience: Any musician who’s struggling to memorize the individual notes to all those dang chords on piano or keyboards, and looking for a solution.

Lesson Description: Learn how to immediately call up the notes to any of the twelve major chords — without having to rely on rote memory.  This lesson applies to all twelve major seventh chords as well.

Coming next: The minor and minor seventh chords.

Continue reading “Learn all 12 Major & all 12 Maj7 Chords by Pattern (not by rote)”