The Blues Piano Crash Course – Lesson #6: More practice & help with two-handed coordination

From The Blues Piano Crash Course

Lesson Six (video) “Put Your Hands Together – Again…”

More tips and practice on two-handed coordination for piano, using notes from the blues.

Continue reading “The Blues Piano Crash Course – Lesson #6: More practice & help with two-handed coordination”

Steps to Memorizing Chords: Half-Steps, Whole-Steps, and Thirds

PREMIUM CONTENT (member’s only course material)

Today’s video lesson was created especially for my current series, “Piano Chords 108.” In this lecture, students will learn how to visualize and play half-steps, whole-steps, minor thirds, and major thirds on the piano.

What’s in the video lesson below?

Intervals…

Half-steps and whole-steps are the two intervals that we use here to define minor and major thirds (which are also intervals).  It’s the all-important thirds that we are especially focused on here, and we will construct them easily today, using just half-steps and whole-steps.

…Leading to Chords

In our chord speed-learning class called Piano Chords 108, you will achieve impressive memorization skills for chords by using the music theory concept of “stacking thirds.”

As prerequisite knowledge for that class, this lecture is basically the stuff you gotta know.

After this Lesson:

Before moving on from this lesson, please be sure you can play (or visualize) both a minor and a major third on piano, starting on any given note, without stopping to think.  Even in the middle of a car chase, or a toddler’s birthday party at that pizza-and-games place, this should be something you can do without thinking.

Assuming maybe you’re not there yet, no worries! Today can be the day. It probably won’t take more than one solid practice session after this video, for you to OWN what’s covered in the lesson!

VIDEO LESSON BELOW:

Continue reading “Steps to Memorizing Chords: Half-Steps, Whole-Steps, and Thirds”

The Blues Piano Crash Course – Lesson #5 “Put Your Hands Together”

from The Blues Piano Crash Course

Lesson Five (video) “Put Your Hands Together”

Tips and practice on two-handed coordination for piano, using notes from the blues!

Continue reading “The Blues Piano Crash Course – Lesson #5 “Put Your Hands Together””

Today’s Date in Jazz History: The passing of Bill Evans (1929 -1980)

Hello from Kent,

If I were asked to pick one person as my “jazz idol,” I would not hesitate to say Bill Evans.  In fact, I have been asked this, and that’s always my answer.

Today marks the anniversary of the death of this hugely influential jazz pianist, who passed away on this date in 1980.

Today I’m sharing two articles about  Bill Evans, in honor of his memory.  Thank you, Mr. Evans, for all that you have taught me (and still do), through your music, your life, and your legacy!

The Musical Genius of Bill Evans

Wikipedia Article on Bill Evans

 

 

 

“The Blues Piano Crash Course” Lesson #3: “Five must-know Riffing Devices”

The Blues Piano tradition is full of tried-and-true “stock” licks, as well as many devices for creating endless original solos. In this lecture, you will learn to use five such “must-know” riffing devices.

PREMIUM CONTENT VIDEO LESSON:

Continue reading ““The Blues Piano Crash Course” Lesson #3: “Five must-know Riffing Devices””

“The Blues Piano Crash Course” Lesson #2: “A Left-hand Groove”

If you’re going to play solo piano Blues, or you want to add a strong supporting groove to a band, then this lecture is for you. Learn to use your left hand to play a dance-able, foot-tapping chord rhythm, while freeing up your right hand to fire off licks and lay down supporting chords. (Later in this course, you’ll master the art of putting both hands together as a dynamic duo.)

PREMIUM CONTENT VIDEO LESSON:

Continue reading ““The Blues Piano Crash Course” Lesson #2: “A Left-hand Groove””

“The Blues Piano Crash Course” Lesson #1 – The Blues Scale

In this first of eleven Blues Piano lessons, discover how a simple six-note scale — the famous “Blues Scale” — is a musician’s gold mine for creating original blues sounds. Immediately after this lecture, you can sit down at your piano and start creating bluesy licks and melodies that are all your own.

You may find it interesting to learn that a piano player who knows how to make nice licks, using only this C Blues Scale (the one introduced here), could technically sit in on a blues  jam session in the key of C.

Here’s the video lesson:

Continue reading ““The Blues Piano Crash Course” Lesson #1 – The Blues Scale”

“Basic Professional” system for voicing chords with a melody

PREMIUM CONTENT (VIDEO PORTION) – Supporting Members Only

Audience: This lesson is for anyone studying the use of chords on piano.  In particular, pianists and keyboard players who work from song charts, fakebooks, lead sheets, and the like.

In order to fully benefit from this lesson, one must know the basics of constructing chords on the piano, including the standard “seventh” chords,  such as the major seventh, minor seventh, and dominant seventh chord. (By “constructing,” I mean knowing the member notes that make up such chords, starting on any root.)

Today’s video lesson presents a straightforward system for choosing an underlying support structure that uses both hands, providing a nice “default” approach when playing a melody with supporting chords.

Enjoy!

Kent

Continue reading ““Basic Professional” system for voicing chords with a melody”