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3 Main Areas

  1. Instrumental and musical Skills
  2. Improvisation
  3. Artistic development

Instrumental--- Virtuosity as goal; technique, finger dexterity, classical studies, transcription, harmony, repertoire (playing tunes, composition)

Musical ---Reading, writing and hearing music, intervals, ear training, the use of voice to sing what one hears, knowledge of the keyboard essential because of the ease of visualising sound and colours

Improvisation--- study of chords, scales, harmonic cycles ,rules of tension and release, the analysis and ability to duplicate the legacy through playing and study of the great Jazz masters, saturated listening a special study, the playing in real situations, learning the customs, timing, feel and the repertoire of live improvisation

Artistic development---Knowledge of jazz legacy; features of style of important artists and recordings and basic historical trends. General knowledge of classical tradition in music, other arts such as history, philosophy and science, anything that will make the artist more alive and aware and so the level and content of communication to others

Continues to evolve and deepen.

Scales (some ideas on practising scales),

  1. Confusion --- different names for same scale eg Bdom. Wholetone = Cmelodic minor
  2. When practising scales, set metronome on 2+4; use good time feel and be flexible, playing on top, in the middle or behind the beat.
  3. Practise scales by intervals (2notes) moving upwards and downwards; by arpeggios; by alternating scales---going up Dorian and Phrygian coming down; 4 –note(1235,1356 etc.)
  4. Also by using different emphasis --- on 1st and 3rd beats rather than playing them with the same attack
  5. Practise using the double approach –e.g. Starting on the scale of C major, begin by playing two notes above C or two notes below.
  6. Using rhythmic displacement---eg not necessarily starting on the first beat of the bar—maybe begin on the 'and' of one.
  7. Lastly, use the Theme and Variation Principle ---
                    a) Diminution—making the notes of shorter value
                    b) Augmentation---making them longer