ARTICLES: 

Piano Articles, Tips and Tricks To Further Your Jazz and Blues Skills 
November 6, 2023
Blues Piano Practice Straight-Talk

Blues piano practice straight-talk? What does that mean? Well, in this article you're in for a little treat. In this article we're going to reveal some blunt thoughts and tips for playing and practicing the piano - some "straight talk" if you will. As educators, we have a love and fondness for the material we […]

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November 6, 2023
Jazz Theory - The Major Bebop Scale

Jazz theory is not a separate subject area from music theory, although many people think that music theory and jazz theory require separate forms of study. Take it from someone who has attended many music theory and jazz theory classes at the university level - it's all the same stuff. So why, then, is jazz […]

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November 6, 2023
Understanding Meter in Music - Powerful Theory

Understanding meter in music might seem like a fairly simple concept. When discussing meter we usually discuss the time signature, which indicates how many beats will occur in each measure and which subdivision will be counted as the underlying beat. These concepts seem quite simple when looking at examples such as 2/4, 3/4, and 4/4 […]

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November 6, 2023
Building an Arrangement - "Summertime"

Building an arrangement and knowing how to incorporate various harmonic devices is a major part of developing your cocktail piano repertoire. It's also an essential skill that can be practiced at an easy, intermediate, and advanced level. In this article we'll take a very popular cocktail piano piece - George Gershwin's "Summertime" - and show […]

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November 6, 2023
Rock Piano Soloing (with Bruce Hornsby)

Rock piano soloing requires a slightly different mindset than jazz piano soloing. In the jazz piano context, the right hand is free to play lots of chromatic tones, altered scales, and shifty rhythmic figures. The left hand often plays rootless voicings that use extended harmonies (i.e., things like 7ths, 9ths, and 13ths are common). These […]

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November 6, 2023
Rock Organ Soloing

Rock organ soloing requires a different approach than jazz soloing. In the jazz context, keyboard solos are usually played at the piano and built around advanced harmonies and chord substitutions, various chord scales, quirky-syncopated rhythms, and left-handed comping. By contrast, rock keyboard solos are frequently played on a number of various keyboard instruments, including the […]

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November 6, 2023
Synthesizer Basics

"Synthesizer basics" refers to knowing the particular aspects of the synthesizer, why it's used, and how it's different from a typical keyboard or piano. At first glance it might seem like the synthesizer and the piano are basically the same instrument, right? Well, they certainly do look similar in terms of the black and white […]

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November 6, 2023
Funky Chord Tricks

Funky chord tricks refer to some of the slick, pro-sounding passing chords that can be used to improve the sound of your playing. These chords often make students stop and ask "Wait - what was that you just played?!" Often these chords sound too advanced or complex for intermediate students, but in truth these chords […]

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November 6, 2023
Jazz Improvisation Tutorial

This jazz improvisation tutorial features one of the all-time most requested and recorded jazz standards - "Autumn Leaves" written by Joseph Kosma way back in 1945. The song continues to be a favorite among jazz players and audiences today. In this article we'll take a closer look at the chords of the 'A' section and […]

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November 6, 2023
Jazzedge Academy Studio Upgrade & Grand Piano

I've been lucky enough to have some nice pianos in my life. My old studio piano was a 1925 Kanabe 6' grand piano. My Kanabe and I have had some great memories together. In fact I wrote and rehearsed the songs for both of my albums on that piano. Now my Kanabe lives in my […]

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November 6, 2023
“Ain’t No Sunshine” and Drop-2 Voicings

The Bill Withers classic song “Ain’t No Sunshine” is a funky R&B standard that has also found a home in jazz circles. This is probably because the song has many traditional elements of jazz present in the song. For example, the song is based on an 8-bar modal cycle that features a minor blues-type of […]

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November 6, 2023
Human Nature Tutorial - Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson's music is some of the most classic pop/rock music of all-time, so we wanted to feature this Human Nature tutorial because so many students have been interested in Michael Jackson tunes. Human Nature is a particularly great tune to explore because of the beautiful, lush left hand chords as well as the classic right-hand […]

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