MusicRadar is part of Future plc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. There was a problem. (Image credit: Press) Playing solo piano can be a daunting and difficult task, and finding effective ways of practising solo piano can be elusive, as well. Work on the small things. Adam Maness explains the famous 2-5-1 chord progression and gives you 3 great sounding jazz chords to play it. Convert your jazz practice from meaningless scales and arpeggios to something that enhances your playing. Stride playing was the original style of solo jazz piano, and it emerged largely out of Ragtime music. Improvising a solo isn’t just inserting the licks and lines that you’ve perfected in the practice room. Don't miss the latest deals, news, reviews, features and tutorials. https://www.merriammusic.com/school-of-music/jazz-piano-standards After many years of listening to the great solo pianists throughout jazz history Errol Garner, Art Tatum, Thelonious Monk, Bill Evans, Keith Jarrett, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, and Brad Mehldau, I realised that the basic physical aspects of solo playing could largely be broken down to four approaches. Piano Essentials Practice Tips Learn how to get the most out of your Piano Essentials lessons with these 8 tips. With only two hands, solo pianists are … ; Shell voicings - the key to unlock jazz harmony; How to swing (and what is swing? Practice everything – scales, licks, voicings, improvisation and songs – in every key, especially your weak keys. Future Publishing Limited Quay House, The Ambury, The last approach is a great one to practice, as it will improve your duo playing as well as help you to develop interesting things to play in between melodic phrases in a solo piano context. 1, largely has the left-hand pinky playing bass/root notes, the right-hand pinky and/or fourth finger playing the melody, and the harmony split between the rest of the two hands, similar to the way church hymns are played. ... New Jazz Piano Practice – Tune Up by Miles Davis. As a simple example, you might play the first few bars trio-style to start out with a thinner/lighter texture, then expand to hymnal style, and finally to stride style to get a more full, robust sound. I'm a beginner Jazz pianist coming from a solo, classical background with an itch to buy a new keyboard. I’ll close with some final practice tips: While all my lessons are free, if you find them useful please consider donating to help keep them coming. And the way you do this is by tediously repeating scales and chords ad nauseum. Don’t be afraid to copy a solo note for note. After many years of listening to the great solo pianists throughout jazz history Errol Garner, Art Tatum, Thelonious Monk, … To give you a few exercises you can practice to improve your ability to improvise; and 2. And take the guess work out of practicing with 4 Guided Practice Sessions® led by Open Studio piano guru Adam Maness. He is also the author of the The Jazz Masters Method DVD. Please refresh the page and try again. • The best MIDI keyboards 2020: Mac, PC, iPhone and iPad MIDI controller keyboards for beginner and pro musicians Some jazz standards, such as Giant Steps by John Coltrane, are entirely 251 chord progressions changing from key to key during the song. He learned to play it, Play a II-V-I in every key going around the Circle of Fifths, So for example, start with a II-V-I in D (Em7, A7, DMaj7) then a II-V-I in G (Am7, D7, GMaj7) then a II-V-I in C (Dm7, G7, CMaj7) and so on, Play II-V-I’s with left hand only chord voicings and improvising with your right hand, Do the same exercise but moving down in semitones, Do the same exercise but with another common jazz chord progression (like I-VI-II-V, or 12 Bar Blues, etc. You want to be creative, even at a fast tempo – that requires you to think fast, which first requires you to play and think slow. Or you can simply use them as a springboard to create your own licks.