Turnarounds & Connecting Phrases
In this lesson we will examine the slight variations on the A Sections and we will then learn how to connect the A & B Sections together using turnarounds.
Visualising The Form
When playing through tunes it’s useful to have a mental visualisation of the form. In this case the form is AABA, each block represents a bar and this approach makes it easy to visualise and memorise the harmony for the tunes that we are working on.
Pay attention to the slight variations in the melody on the 2nd line of each A Section, and also notice how I connect each section with chord voicings and melodic decoration in the full demonstration.
Connecting The A Sections
We explore a number of ways to navigate the turnaround from the 1st A Section to the 2nd A Section. Looking at the lead sheet we have a long tied note where the melody is static. We can outline the stride left hand but this can sound a little plain and so we explore the following options:
- F major blues scale fragments
- Blues licks & riffs
- Octave tremolo combined with blues licks
Transitioning Into The B Section
The transition from the 2nd A Section to the B Section is a little more complicated because we need to modulate to the relative minor D Minor. We add a cliché blues turnaround and a 25 progression to the relative minor (E-7b5 & A7) to navigate this important section of the tune.
Ending The Tune
Finally we explore a signature blues ending with can be used to end the tune, to start the tune again, or to head into an improvised solo. The voicings for the turnaround phrase are:
- Fmaj / Adim / Bb / Bdim7 / F/C / Db9 / C9#5 / F
In the next lesson we will explore passing chords, I’ll see you there.
Georgia Harmonic Visualisation File Type: pdf
Turnarounds Full Demonstration File Type: pdf
Bluesy Turnaround Variations File Type: pdf
Soulful Turnaround Variations File Type: pdf
Practice the A and B sections equally and ensure that you are devoting enough time to the 8 bar B section.
Learn the different turnaround options so that you have the creative freedom on how to play the turnaround phrases.
Listen to lots of recordings and study how the musicians connect the different sections with melodic and harmonic fills.