How to “Permanently Learn” Every Major Scale using the Major Tetrachord
UPDATED: July 20, 2021.
I’ve had lots of happy feedback about this lesson, ever since I first posted it on YouTube. People are basically saying that this is the easiest way they have found to learn the notes of all twelve major scales, quickly and painlessly. I learned about tetrachords in my college theory classes, and I have found them to be a little-known “secret” for organizing one’s thoughts about scales and modes. Let me know what you think!
A Powerful Tip for Blues, Jazz, and Rock Improvisers
Today’s post is about using the first four notes of a blues scale as a moveable pattern, with many ear-catching possibilities that can fire up your solos in unexpected ways.
This “rock-bottom four” pattern, starting on any given note, can produce a wide variety of bluesy, funky, and jazzy sounds, when used in a context of your careful choosing, guided by your ear as the final judge.
This is a slide show, which is a common format that I use on my Instagram page, @piano_w_kent.
I have discovered that these types of posts seem to work well on my Instagram page, so I’m going to start featuring these here, too.
Chopin Prelude #7 in A-Major | Exclusive Sheet Music for Solo Piano | Includes Note Names (Letters)
Complete and Unabridged!
Meticulously engraved and annotated by Kent D. Smith, professional musician and music instructor, and founder of Piano With Kent.
Each note is labeled with its musically accurate letter-name, such as F, Bb, C, G#.
One downloadable, printable PDF file – Two(2) pages.
Your download link is returned to your screen(on this site), immediately upon purchase. Your same private download link is also sent to you by email (using the email address that you used for your purchase.)*
Ideal for the former piano student returning to piano after some time, but with no access to a teacher.
Also helpful for:
Those who play mostly by ear, and who know the basics of the 7-letter musical alphabet (note-names).
Any student or musician with a reading or learning difficulty that may affect the processes of learning to read sheet music notation.
Attention please: Formal music students who are actively taking piano lessons, with a focus on reading sheet music, absolutely should be guided by your teacher, as regards playing piano from sheet music with note-names added.
How to Deal with ‘Over-Crowding’ of Your Fingers when dealing with Awkward Chords
Today’s post is taken from an online exchange between a YouTube follower of mine, and myself, regarding a question he had posted on one of my YouTube tutorials. The topic of discussion here is playing certain difficult chord-shapes on piano…
I recently received a question today (on my YouTube channel), an excellent one, the topic of which is subject to debate. The question is in response to one of my videos about using add9 chords on piano. (A link to the video is included below.)
I thought I would share the thread here:
VIEWER: Isn’t the D in Cadd9 supposed to be an octave higher? I guess I’m just confused as to why it isn’t Add2 instead.
“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. Continue reading Chord Voicings for Jazz Piano (Rootless, Left-Hand, Type B)
In this lesson, we master a couple of specific blues piano tricks of the trade. I’m using the word specific here, because we’re going to use these devices with a goal in mind, a musical effect that is pretty specific.
The “tricks” in this video are focused on emulating those sounds of blues singers and other instruments who can bend their notes (slide or play between pitches). You’ll learn about “blue notes,” and also pick up a blues-boogie playing technique called the slide-off.
It seems to me that contemporary modal improv, which had its jazz birth in the late 1950’s, was a huge influence on the increasingly improvisational rock of the 1960’s, (even when players might not have consciously realized it!), and has never stopped being at the heart of so many great pop/rock/jazz solos until this very day.
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.
We’re looking at this piece because (1) it was part of a ground-breaking approach to jazz improvisation and composition when it came out, and it’s still definitive of the modal jazz genre (maybe the definitive recording?) (2) because “So What” is the best-known track on one of top-selling jazz albums of all time, “Kind of Blue.”