Barry Harris - Transcription Exercises

In this thread we explore the style of Barry Harris.

Barry Harris Biography:

Download full biography: Barry Harris Biography.pdf (19.5 KB)

One of the most influential jazz pianists, educators, composers and arrangers, Barry Harris has been a spokesperson of bebop since the 50’s. He is a true traditionalist (in a good sense of the word), still teaching the art of modern jazz all over the world, while also performing internationally.

Important Discography To Start With:

Download full suggested discography: Barry Harris - Suggested Discography.pdf (17.1 KB)

  • Barry Harris At The Jazz Workshop - Trio w/ William Austin (b) & Frank Grant (dr) 1960
    Spotify Link Here
  • Luminescence! - Sextet w/ Slide Hampton (trb), Junior Cook (tsax), Pepper Adams (bsax), Bob Cranshaw (b) & Lenny McBrowne (dr) 1967
    Spotify Link Here
  • Live In New York - Quintet w/ Charles Davis (sax), Roni Ben-Hur (gt), Paul West (b) & Leroy Williams (dr) 2003
    Spotify Link Here

What Do These Exercises Cover?

  • Exercises on this thread are built to give the students a deeper view on Barry Harris’ style, soloing, comping as well as an overall look into the tradition of jazz through his artistry.
  • Exercises are transcription-based, following with a closer look into certain details of his playing. This way we can combine ear-training with learning the language of jazz, as well as analyzing closely what is happening.

Transcription Exercise No. 1

Ascension - Album: Listen To Barry Harris Solo Piano

This transcription exercise covers the first chorus of Barry Harris’ piano solo on ‘Ascension’, starting at 1:18s.

Click here for the start of the solo

The Assignment:

Transcribe the missing parts of the following transcription:

Ascension Transcription Exercise.pdf (57.6 KB)

Ascension Transcription Exercise.mscz (29.0 KB)

  • Right hand : transcribe the missing bars

The full transcription will be posted in 2 weeks with supporting material and an analysis of the solo as well as details about what we can learn from the solo, and how to practice with it.

If you have any questions with the exercise, post them in this thread.

Have fun!


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Full Transcription & Selected Analysis No. 1

Ascension - Album: Listen To Barry Harris Solo Piano

Click here for the start of the solo

Here is the transcription of the first 2 choruses of the piano solo:

Ascension Transcription.pdf (64.6 KB)

Ascension Transcription.mscz (33.8 KB)

And here a selected analysis:

Ascension Analysis.pdf (205.1 KB)

If you have questions, comments or ideas, please write them to the thread,