Major 251 Improvisation Drills
For practice slot 4, we are going to take a simple chord tone line around all 12 rootless major 251s. We will then look at some variations and extensions you can add to the melody and finally we will deconstruct a more complex bebop line.
Voice Leading: b7ths Falling To 3rds
For the simple chord tone line, notice that we land into the 3rd of each upcoming chord and we are also sticking exclusively to the primary chord tones.
It’s important that we can visualise this voice leading of b7s falling to 3rds in all 12 keys. If we study any of the famous bebop players we will see that the voice leading of b7s falling to 3rds is very common and joins up our melodic ideas to the underlying harmony.
Weekly Transcription Exercises
It’s important that we are transcribing material from records and applying it to our playing. This is how we develop our ‘own sound’ when playing jazz piano.
If you are new to transcription, check out the weekly improvisation and transcription exercises in the PianoGroove Community area.
Rootless Voicings Practice Planner File Type: pdf
When learning to improvise, we must follow the process outlined in this lesson for all lines that we transcribe.
When we take a line around all 12 keys, we become familiar with the melody allowing us to use it when improvising.
Try to keep the fingering the same in all keys. This will help to speed up the memorisation process.
Learn to transcribe your own lines with the weekly improvisation and transcription exercises in the forum.
- These exercises will train your ears so that you can pick up new melodic material directly from your favourite recordings.