Learn how to form, practice and use the altered scale in your improvisation.
Quiz yourself to see how well you know your 2-5-1 Progression.
Hey guys, Willie Myette, creator of jazz edge. Welcome to the confident improviser podcast. This is episode number 18. Okay, so today we are going to be going through our 251 quiz number two. So we’ve already done a 251 quiz a little bit earlier in our episodes, now we’re going to, you know, get in a little bit deeper into what we’re talking about with two five ones. As a reminder, this podcast is a companion podcast to the confident improviser program, which is found the jazz edge, you go back to jazz edge calm or the confident improviser.com for more information, okay, 251 quiz number two. So first of all, we’re going to be talking about 251 pockets. Sometimes I also refer to this as key centers, as well. So the 251 progression is very common in jazz standards. And it’s common for jazz standards to contain more than 1251 progression. So you might be in the key of C and the 251 progression is D minor, seven g7. C major, but then you might also do a 251 progression going through the four chord, as well. So it’s common to find more than 1251 progression. In a jazz standard, it’s also common to sometimes just find 251 chord progression snippets. So that means that you might just have the two and the five, and it never resolves to the one. The other thing is, you’ll also notice that you will often move in between cue centers in jazz standards, and you won’t stay in one key Center and the 251 pocket. Seeing that is really good because then you can improvise over that entire 251 progression using just one scale, which is something that confused me decades ago, when I first started to learn how to improvise, I used to think, oh, the two chord I got to play a Dorian the five chord, I need to play a Mixolydian and the one chord I need to play an Ionian scale. And the reality is Dorian Mixolydian. And Ionian is all the major scale. So if I did 251 progression in the key of C, I would have D minor seven g7, C major seven, so D minor seven g7, C major seven, that’s my 251 progression in the key of C, and then I would could just improvise using
I can improvise just using that C major scale throughout. So I don’t have to go into a Dorian into a Mixolydian or into an Ionian. And the reality is, you’ll realize that D Dorian g Mixolydian, and C Ionian guess what it’s all the same notes of the C major scale. Anyway. Now for those of you that happen to be looking at the video rendition of this podcast, you see that what I have up in front of you here is your diatonic seventh chords. And what we’re doing here is we are analyzing this 251 progression, you’ll see that there is a bracket in between or below, I should say, the D minor seven to G seven. So we have D minor, seven g7. There’s a bracket that’s going underneath that two, five progression, and then there’s an arrow resolving to the one chord. That’s typically how we would analyze a 251 progression in our music. Alright, so let’s go through the quiz here, we got five different chords to try and find. Okay, and I have some good news at the end of this session that I’ll share with you. All right, so let’s start with this first one. So we have D minor seven, a blank, and C major seven. So the question is, what is the blank? Remember, if we have a two, a five and a one, the two chord is going to be minor, the five chord is going to be dominant, the one chord is going to be major. Now let’s just stop there for one quick second. Does the 251 progression always have to be minor than two dominant than two major? No, no, you can have some alterations in there, you might have a 251 and minor. So it might go to minor seven flat 557, flat 921 minor, you could even have a 251 going to like a dominant chord like D minor seven to G seven to C seven, right? So it’s not your typical 251. But you could do stuff like that as well. Alright, so anyway, right now we’re just talking about our typical 251 progression, which is a minor chord to a dominant chord to a major seventh chord. So here we have D minor seven, blank, then C major seven. So it’s D minor seven, what’s the next chord that should be coming and then get into C major. If you answered g7, you are correct. D minor seven g7. C major seven. So D minor seven is the two chord. g seven is the five chord. C major seven is the one chord. All right, let’s move on to the next one. G minor seven, C seven.
Then blank. So here if you’re not recognizing this already watch it. Let’s go back for a second. In the previous example, D minor seven, blank, C major seven, we were trying to find what the two chord, the five chord or the one chord. Which one were we trying to find there? In D minor seven, blank, C major seven. What chord? Are we trying to find? The two? The five or the one? If you answered the five, you’re absolutely correct. Okay, so we were trying to find the five chord here we have G minor, seven to C seven to blank. So here we’re trying to find what chord we’re trying to find the one chord.
G minor seven, C seven.
And then what?
So if you answered F major seven, you’re absolutely correct, right? So G minor, seven, C seven, then to F major seven. G minor seven is the two chord, C seven is the five, F major seventh is the one chord. All right, let’s move on to number three. So we start with blank, then f seven, then B flat major seven. So what are we trying to find the two, the five or the one? We’re trying to find the two. All right, so what is that chord that leads me to C seven, and then leads me to B flat major seven, it is what? C minor seven, C minor seven, f seven, then B flat major seven, C minor seven, f seven, B flat major seven. And here I’m playing the C minor seven and root position, the F seven in second inversion, the B flat major in root position. Now when practicing these, it’s always a great idea, especially if you’re away from the piano, spell the notes of the chord C minor seven is what it is.
C, E flat, G, B flat, F, seven,
F, A, C, E flat, and B flat seven is what? B flat D, F, A. Okay, let’s move on to number four, F minor seven, to B flat seven. To blank, what is the blank, we’re trying to find what we’re trying to find the one chord so F minor seven, to B flat seven to A flat major seven. Now, start to see the correlation here, between these different chords, you know, the two chord is just a whole step up from the one chord. So if I already know F minor seven, right? If I’m trying to find one, I just go down a whole step, what’s a whole step down from F? It is F, E flat, right? So E flat is a whole step down. Okay, so E flat major seventh. And finally, the last one, here’s a good one for you. A minor seven, E flat 721. E flat minor, seventh is a two chord, a flat seven is the five and we are trying to get to the one chord, which is what it is D flat major. So you answered that. Very, very good. Okay. So, real short today, just doing a real quick 251 quiz. You can challenge yourself and practice this stuff away from the piano. One great way of doing it is just throw up a letter. Okay, whatever letter you want. Okay? Hey, all right. Let me start with that a minor seven, a minor seven. What’s the two chord? Five would be what? D seven. One would be what? G major seven. Now, I said a minor seven. What if I change that to a seven? So now a seven becomes the five chord. So then that would be a minor seven, a seven, D major seventh? What if I change that to a major seventh? Well, that’s the one chord right? So I’d have B minor seven, e seven, a major seven. Okay, so you see how I could take that one letter, change the quality of the chord from major, minor or dominant, and then I could try and figure out my two, my five and my one from there. Now, the good news is there’s going to be an interactive quiz coming very, very soon. So just be sure to pay attention to the podcast and I’ll give you the link for that interactive quiz once it is ready. Alright, so that’s it for me. Thank you guys for joining me. Remember, every other Thursday, I do my q&a session for the confident improviser. If you’re not a member of jazz edge, and you want to learn how to improvise, the confident improviser is the place to be students love it. It is a step by step approach to learn improvisation, even if you’ve never tried to improvise before, right? It literally starts from the bare bone basics. And there are inspiration lessons in there as well for those of you that kind of might already know a little bit about improvisation and you want to challenge yourself. So it works for absolute beginners, and then goes all the way up to players that already know how to improvise. We start with a jazz and blues sensibility. But as we move along, we’re going to be moving into other styles as well. Alright, so that’s it for me. Thanks, guys. I’ll see you in the next lesson.
You’ll learn how to form the major scale and diatonic chords, then quiz yourself to see how well you know what you’ve learned!
Hey guys, Willie Myette, creator of jazz edge. Welcome to the confident improviser podcast. This is episode number 17. So today what we’re going to be talking about is diatonic seventh chords, you’re going to quiz yourself, see how well you know your major scale and your diatonic chords. As a reminder, this podcast goes along with the confident improviser improvisation program, which has found a jazz edge if you’ve never, you know, improvise before you’ve always wanted to learn how to improvise. Or maybe you just want to get better at improvisation, the confident improviser is an incredible program for you to check out at jazz edge.com you can also go back to the confident improviser.com to get more information and then also get some replays of the podcast. So again, diatonic seventh chords, let’s dig right in. The first question is, why do we learn the diatonic chord sequence and there’s a couple of reasons that I’d like to share with you. Number one, it makes analysis much easier, which then in turn, makes memorization so much easier. So if you don’t know your diatonic chords, it’s going to be almost impossible for you to be able to analyze. And if you don’t know how to analyze, then it’s going to be very, very difficult for you to be able to memorize chords and progressions, because the best way of memorizing progressions is through an analysis approach. The other reason that it’s important is that it’s great for composition, which I’ll kind of show you in a little bit some different ways in which you can use these diatonic chords for composition. It also helps you to become a quote next chord wizard, because when you understand your diatonic chords, you start to have a better sense of what chord will come next in a, you know, in a song, especially, if you’re doing more like rock pop, kind of tunes, jazz tunes can get a little bit more complicated because you move into different key centers. But you know, the more simplistic the harmony is, the easier it is for you to be able to kind of see where it’s going to be going, utilizing your diatonic chords and diatonic harmony. And finally, it’s also an important way to see those key centers and to improve your improvisation. Alright, so let’s dig right in. First of all, diatonic basically means everything within the routes. So if we have C to C, we have our major scale, it means everything between the routes, all right, which is basically a fancy way of saying it’s the C major scale. So when we say is something diatonic to the key of C. Another way of saying that is, are the notes found in the C major scale? So again, the notes of the C major scale are C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C. So if I said to you is F sharp diatonic to the key of C, you would say? No, it’s not, of course not. It is a black note. And then the C major scale is all white notes. So that’s a in the key of C, it’s kind of real, real simple. If it’s a white note, then it’s in the key of C, if it’s a black note, then it’s outside of the key of C. Alright, so is the note C diatonic to the C major scale, of course, it’s diatonic. And now you’ll also notice that I’m going to utilize the term C major scale and key of C, interchangeably. That’s because when we’re talking about is something in a key, we’re really also saying is that found in the major scale, right? So if I said, Let’s take the key of G for for a minute, right? So we have G, A, B, C, D, E, F sharp G, right? That’s the key of G. So now, if I said, is the note D diatonic to the key of G? Well, yes, it is. It’s the fifth. What about the note F sharp? Yes, it’s the seventh. What about the note G? Yes, it’s the root. Okay. So if the note is found within the scale, then it is diatonic to that key, or to that scale. So in other words, with our C major scale, we have C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C, any of those notes, if I said any of those notes, as C is D is E, F g A or B diatonic to the key of C, our answer would be yes. Okay. That would be diatonic. If I said C sharp, or a D sharp or F sharp or a flat or B flat, G sharp, none of those notes would be diatonic to the key of C. Alright, so hopefully, that explains it a little bit better. Now one thing you want to do is you also want to number the notes of the scale. And if you happen to be watching the video of this, which you can get back at jazz edge comm it will be found right in the confident improviser course. But anyway, what you see on the screen, and a
For those of you that are just listening, I am just numbering the notes of the scale. So again, we have C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C, and all I’m doing is numbering them 1234567. And it’s really one, I put eight, just so you know, it’s the eighth note of the scale, but really, we’re going back to one, right, so it’s really, we don’t use eight, we will just call that one again. All right. So now we’re going to do is we’re going to build diatonic seventh chords on each note of the scale. So here’s the trick, you’re going to build a seventh chord, right, which is a four note chord on each note of that C major scale, okay, so that means I’m going to build a seventh chord on a note C, on a, no D on a note, E, F, G, A and B. Okay. And then when building that seventh chord, and the easier way of thinking about is just simply skipping, skipping, skipping a note from the scale. So I start with C, I skip over D, I go to E, I skip over F, I go to G, I skip over a, I go to B. So my first chord is C, E, G, B, which is a C major seven chord. Now another way of looking at it is, I am going to build seventh chords on each note of the scale, utilizing only notes from the scale. So again, we start in the key of C, because it’s a lot easier to visualize this in the key of C, it’s all white notes. So this means that all of my diatonic chords are going to have only white notes in them. If I play like say, the D chord, and I’m playing an F sharp up here, that’s not diatonic to the key of C that is now non diatonic, right. So what I’m going to do is I’m literally going to go up each note of the scale, and I’m going to play chords, beginning on each note of the scale. And if you see what I’m doing here, okay, or if you couldn’t see it, you’ll notice that I’m playing just white notes. Starting on each note of the scale, I’m just gonna quickly tell you what the chords are and what the notes are. So C major seven, C, E, G, B, D, minor, seven, D, F, AC, E, minor, seven, E, G, B, D, F, major seven, F, AC, E, G, seven, or G dominant, seven, G, B, D, F, A minor, seventh, AC, E, G, B, minor, seven, flat five, B, D, F, A. Alright, back to C major seven. Okay, so those are our diatonic chords in the key of C. Now, the next thing that we do is we apply Roman numerals to these diatonic chords. I’ve gotten complaints actually, in the past, from students, why are you using new roman numerals? It’s so old fashioned. All right, well, I didn’t come up with this. This isn’t, you know, my reasoning behind this. It’s just something that has been done for literally decades utilizing these Roman numerals for analysis. Okay. And there’s a good reason why. And what you’ll notice is that you can have an uppercase and a lowercase in the Roman numeral. So when you have a major chord or a dominant chord, you could use an uppercase to signify that it’s a major third in there. When you have a minor third in there, you can use lowercase, which signifies that it is a minor sounding chord. Alright, so we have one major seventh C major seven, to minor seventh, D minor, seven, three, minor seven, E minor, seventh, for major seven, F major seven, five, dominant seven, g seven, six, minor seven, a minor, seven, seven, minor seven, flat five, and that’s B minor seven, flat five. Some people like to call this half diminished, I suggest you consider it minor seven, flat five versus half diminished. There are many reasons for that I’m not going to get into right now, but let’s just say that you can get into some technical theory issues down the road. If you think of it as a diminished chord, it is not a diminished chord. It is a minor seven flat five chord. Okay, so now, the cool thing about these chords is that they, this pattern remains the same in all 12 keys. So what you’ll notice is you have the one chord and the four chord are both major seventh, there’s only one dominant chord in the key and that’s the five, seven chord, the two, the three and the six are minor. And then the seventh chord is a minor seven with a flatted fifth. So let’s for fun move to the key of F. So in the key of F, the F major scale is F, G, A, B flat, C, D, E, F, so that one major seventh would be F major seven, for major seventh is what? B flat major seven. What about three minor seven, a minor, two minor, G minor.
What about five, seven? Let’s see Seven, six minor. Well, that would be D minor, right?
So those are diatonic chords in the key of F, well, what’s your seven minor seven, flat five in the key of F, give you a second to think about it, that would be E minor seven, flat five. Let’s try another one. Let’s try the key of G. So first of all, I’m going to give you a second, if you want to pause, you want to spell the G major scale. So what are the notes of the G major scale, that would be G, A, B, C, D, E, F sharp, G. And if you happen to be watching, you notice that the virtual keyboard says G flat, I have it all set all flat, since we move around different keys. So you know though that should be an F sharp versus a G flat. Alright, so that’s the notes of the G major scale. Well, now let’s go through the G G, diatonic chords, right. So the G major diatonic seventh chords, one major is G major, seven, two minor is a minor seven, three minor is the minor seven, four major is C major seven, five dominant, seventh is d Seven, six minor is a minor, seven, seven, minor seven, flat five is F sharp, minor seven, flat five. And then finally, we go back to G major. Now, if this is moving too quickly for you, I completely understand it can get confusing. You can go back, you can rewind, you can listen to it. Again, if you’re listening on a podcast app, it might even be good. If you slow me down a little bit, most of the apps you could slow down, you know, by 75, or 50%, might make it a little bit easier for you. Let’s go through a couple more just to make sure that you kind of understand how to form the major scale, what the notes in the major scale are, and then also what the diatonic seventh chords are, okay. Now, just real quickly, in case you did not already know, I will give you the pattern for the major scale, so that you could do it away from the piano. So let’s do the key of D, we start on D. And then we always start in a note, we haven’t done anything yet. So we’re starting on D Now we go up a whole step to eat up a whole step to F sharp, up a half step to G up a whole step to a up a whole step to be up a whole step to C sharp and up a half step to D. So the pattern is start on a note, then go whole, whole, half, whole, whole, whole half. So two whole steps, a half step, three whole steps, a half step, that is your major scale pattern, right. But be sure to start on a note first, a lot of times students will start on a note D and be like, Oh, I went a whole step. Well, no, you haven’t gone anywhere yet. Right? You just started on D, you have to go up to E for your first whole step. So the notes of the D major scale D, E, F sharp, G, A, B, C sharp, D, I’m going to give you one more real good trick to know as well. Let’s say I start on D and I don’t know if it should be sharps or flats. Well guess what you need to use each letter name in order and you cannot repeat a letter name makes it super simple to know if you should be playing sharps or flats. So b D, E, well now you know it has to be F sharp, because it can’t be G flat because I would have skipped over F right. Now what if I did d E, G flat g? Well, that still wouldn’t work either because I just repeated the letter name g twice. Okay, so you see how I can’t repeat it twice. And I have to go in order. So it has to be some kind of D, some kind of E some kind of F Alright, so it’s obviously an F sharp. And then as soon as you have sharps or flats, you don’t mix them in your major scales, okay, in other scales you do. But in your major scales, you do not mix sharps and flats. So as soon as you get to F sharp there, then you know up here, that’s going to be C sharp. So the notes of the D major scale are D, E, F sharp, G, A, B, C sharp, D. Now see if you can go through, I’m going to quiz you, and I’m going to say like 1234567 chord, right? You tell me what the chord is, before I play it. Alright, so one major seventh, that’s easy. D Major 757.
seven minor seven, flat five, give you a second. That C sharp minor seven, flat five, two minor. That’s a minor seven. For major. That’s G major, seven, three minor. That’s F sharp minor. And finally six minor.
B minor. Okay, so we did that all in the key of D in case you were, you know, confused there. That’s all in the key of D. Don’t worry, we’re going to do an A one more key now, right? Just to make sure you really lock this in. Let’s move on to the key of let’s do B flat. All right, so we’re going to start on B flat. Now. Guess
What, since we already have B flat, we know that all the nodes are going to be flats, there’s not going to be any sharps in this because we can’t mix flats and sharps. Now we start with B flat, we go up a whole step to C, whole step D has step two E flat, whole step, whole step two g, whole step two, and a half set to before. So my notes are my B flat major scale, or B flat, C, D, E flat, F, G, A, B flat. Now you want to do yourself a favor and really start to understand your theory better and really start to master your theory. Practice your major scales away from the piano, you should be able to spell them incredibly fast. G major G, A, B, C, D, E, F, sharp, G, F, Major, F, G, A, B, flat, C, D, E, F, C, Major, C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C, right, you should be able to bet that bam, go through and spell those scales super fast. The faster you can spell them, the better. It takes time. Be patient with yourself, you’ll get there. Alright, so, B flat, C, D, E flat, F, G, A, B flat, there’s my B flat major scale. Let’s go ahead and quiz some of our diatonic chords. What’s two minor?
C minor seven? What’s five, seven?
f seven. What’s six minor? G minor? What’s three minor? d?
What’s seven, minor seven, flat five, a minor seven, flat five?
What’s three minor? D minor, four major, E flat major.
One major, B flat major seven. Okay, so now as promised, let’s talk about why we analyze and how we can use that analysis. All right, let’s take something very simple. Let’s take this.
You’ve heard that progression before, you’ve probably mostly heard it in triads.
This time, I’m adding in the seventh chords, making it maybe sound a little bit jazzy. Right?
So the progression I’m playing is a 164.
So now in the key of C, what is 1645? Now if you’re listening to this away from the piano, that is a fantastic way of looking at this stuff. Because now you have to visualize that major scale, you got to think about what’s 164 and five, and you have to think about what is the quality of those chords, right? So we know that one and four is major, two, three, and six is minor. Five is seven, and seven is minor, seven, flat five. So one is C major seven, six is a minor seven, four is F major seven, and five is g7. Right? So I’m playing this song around, maybe I’m gonna do
sounds nice. All I’m doing is just arpeggiated those major seventh and minor seventh chords, so seventh chords, and just starting from the top,
coming right on down. So I just have myself a little progression there and kind of made up this little tune. Alright, now I’m going to bring it to the band, and I’m going to, you know, bring it to the singer and the singer is going to tell me, I can’t do this in the key of C, it’s way too, you know, way too low for me, I need to move it to the key of F. Oh, my goodness gracious. Now you’re thinking to yourself, how am I going to transpose this? So quickly into the key of F? Well, guess what, if you know your diatonic seventh chords, and you understand the analysis that we’ve gone through here, it should be relatively easy for you to build it to move it into the key of F. So let’s go through that real quickly. Right now, first of all, start with the F major scale, spell it before I get to it, what is it,
G A, B flat, C, D, E, right does the notes of your F major scale, let’s just start by just saying that the roots of 1645 the root would be F, then the six is what D, the four is what? B flat five is what C Now we know the quality of the chords is what major than minor than major than dominant. So F major seven, down to D minor seven, down to B flat major seven, then up to C dominant seven
to the arpeggiating.
So, hopefully you can kind of see, we’re scratching the surface here, you can understand how, when you start to understand your diatonic seventh chords, now it becomes so much easier to analyze the progression, and then be able to move that progression into other keys. Let’s say that I want to try writing my own songs. All right, well, here’s the deal. Let’s talk about the movement of chords and how they move. First of all, the one chord is typically your ending chord, right, your resting chord, that’s the like that where you might start the song, which, where you might end the song, the most unstable chord in this progression is the five seven chord, the five chord almost always wants to resolve you back to the one chord, it doesn’t have to, though, you can resolve from five down to four or five up to six. But if you’re looking for, hey, look, I’ve been moving through a bunch of different chords. And now I want to get back to the one chord while the five chord is your candidate, right, play that five chord, and it will easily lead you right back to the one chord. Let’s just try those two chords right now. So I’m just going to play the chord here in the right hand, I’m just playing octaves in the left hand. So I have a C major seventh one, major seven, and then down to five, seven, and then back to one.
And then what I could do is I could also use inversions.
Now I have some other chords in here, I have two minor, I have three minor, right.
So a lot of times what sounds good is to go from the two, four.
If you’re in kind of a jazz sensibility, you could go to the five chord, and instead of one, so that two to the five to the one is a very, very powerful progression and very, very common in jazz, another progression that’s that that’s really common, it’s just walking out one major to two minor, two, minor, two minor, then back to one major, or you could keep going one major, minor, minor, to four major to minor, two, minor, to 572.
You can also move around, and then go from those different minor chords that go from D minor, then the two minor, then maybe go to a minor, then maybe go to E minor, right, so you can play around with
when you go down to a minor,
Now moving from the E minor, back to the to the one chord, not not super strong. So maybe I would go one major, a minor, six minor, then minor, then five dominant seven, back to one, B, C major to a minor, to D minor, to g7, or another way of looking at it as one major to six minor to two
super common. Now what was the progression that we just did earlier? One major to six minor to four major to five, seven, right? I could change that as well I can kind of replace that four major chord with a two minor. So I could go one major, six minor, to do minor 257. Right, we did that. And then rather than going back to one, let me go back up to six minor, then maybe three minor, four major,
back to one.
Now check this out. I’m just going to create a progression here so 1663456 just repeating it now.
Now you can see that I got the workings right there have a pretty nice too. Let’s say that I say okay, I’m not going to bother to do the diatonic seventh chords, I’m going to move to triads. All you do is just take that top note off. So rather than playing C major seventh with the top note of B i just play
C major triad, D minor triad, E minor triad, F major triad, G major triad, a minor triad, B diminished triad, so I do have the diminished there. And then C major triad right. Those are my diatonic triads, guess what do the same progression
a minor, F major,
six minor, or major by
never heard this progression
What’s the progression? See?
Give me the analysis.
Analysis 146165 to E flat, one,
Now, you could see like, I’m just playing around, they’re just moving between chords. And oh, lo and behold, I got myself a composition, you know, I got a composition work. And right there, I add some melody on to that or some lyrics. And now I got myself a song. So one thing that is great to do is take pop tunes and see if you can analyze them using those diatonic seventh chords, some great tunes to take a look at some of the easier Beatles tunes. You know, take a look at those. Take a look at, you know what I mean? Whatever song you like, like you can take a look at literally any pop tune, you know, and just kind of see if you could figure out what the diatonic seventh chords are. Now, we don’t just use diatonic seventh chords for our composition because if we did, well, we only got seven chords available there, right and the key, we do utilize other chords and what we would do is we will borrow chords from other keys. That’s a whole separate discussion, but know that you know, like, you’re not gonna be able to analyze everything utilizing your diatonic seventh chords, but you have to get a firm understanding of diatonic seventh chords, before you can start to move on to some of these other analysis ideas. Alright. Okay, so now as usual, if you have questions on this, and if you are a confident improviser, or jazz edge member, please do join me on Thursdays because I will be happy to answer those questions for you. All right. So Thursdays at one o’clock is when I do my live q&a sessions for the confident improviser. So do join in and I will be happy to answer questions. All right. So that’s it for me. Thanks, guys for listening. I’ll see you guys in the next episode.
Quiz yourself to see how well you know your 2-5-1 progression.
Hey guys, Willie Myette
creative jazz edge, I want to welcome you to episode number 16 of the confident improviser podcast. So today we are going to be going through a 251 quiz. This is going to be the first of a few different quizzes that we’re going to do. So this is quiz number one. And this is where you’re going to be able to quiz yourself to see just how well you know your 251 progression. As always, this podcast goes along with the competent improviser program found the jazz edge, you could find more information and also get the replays back at the confident improviser.com. Okay, so 251 quiz number one. So now what we’re going to do is, I am going to shut off the virtual keyboard and in the overhead, just in case you’re watching because I really just want you to listen. So this is going to be a great podcast to listen to in the car. Alright, so just as a quick reminder, what are 251 progression is, if you don’t know your 251 progression, just go back to the previous episode, Episode Number 15, in which I go through the 251 demystified. But basically in the key of C, that would be a D minor seven to a G seven chord, to C major seven
D minor, seven g7, C major seven. That is your 251 progression. D minor is the two chord in the key of C, G seven is the five chord, and then C major is the one chord. So right now let’s just quiz ourselves to see how well we know our two five ones. So what I’m going to do is we’re going to go through a couple of different ways of quizzing you. And then what you might want to do is you might want to be able to pause the video or pause the audio so that you can answer the question before I give you the answer. All right. All right. So first of all, let’s start simple. What is it 251 progression in the key of C? It is D minor seven g7. C major seven. What about 251? in the key of G?
What is it
a minor seven, seven, G Major 7251 in the key of B flat, C minor seven, f seven, B flat major 251 in the key of A, that would be D minor seven, seven, a major 251 in the key of D, that would be a minor seven, a seven, D Major 7251 in the key of G flat, right? That would be a flat minor seven, D flat seven, G flat major 7251 in the key of D flat, D is in dog D flat, what’s the two chord, B flat minor, then a flat seven, D flat major 7251 in the key of E would be what? F sharp minor seven, B seven, E major 7251 in the key of F would be G minor seven, seven, F Major 7251 in the key of E flat key of E flat, that would be F minor seven, E flat seven, E flat major 251 in the key of B is C sharp minor, right? F sharp dominant B major seven. I think we went through all of them, I don’t think that I missed any of them. But that that gave you most of them. Anyway, notice that what I’m doing is I’m also trying to just go in a random order I’m not just moving through, you know, the typical, you know, keys around the circle of fourths or around the circle of fifths. And the reason that I’m doing that is because I really want you to be able to know these 251 progressions and not know them in any particular pattern. Okay. All right. So let’s do another one now. Okay, so now what I’m going to do is I’m going to give you the two chord I want you to tell me what the five and the one is right. So if I give you D minor seven, five and one is what g7 C major. If I give you a minor seven, five is D, one is G. If I give you F sharp minor seven, five is B seven. One is if I give you C minor seventh. five chord is one chord is being played by give you F minor seventh. five chord is B flat. One court is Forgive you B minor seven, five chord is E seven, the one chord is a major by give you E flat minor seventh five chord is a flat, the one chord is D, if I give you C sharp minor five chord is F sharp, the one chord is
if I give you a flat
minor seven, the five chord is D flat seven, one chord is G flat. If I give you G minor seventh five chord is C seven, one chord is F, if I give you a minor seventh five chord is a, the one chord is D. And if I give you B flat minor seven, five chord is E flat. The one chord is a flat. Alright, great job. So now what I’m going to do is I’m going to give you the five chord, okay? And then what I want you to do is fill in what two, five and one is. Okay? So I’m going to give you the five chord so I’m going to give you c seven to start. So two is G minor seven, then the C seven and then one is 540, c seven, that resolves to might have major Alright, next one, he says. So the two chord is B minor seven, five chord is the one chord is a What about a seven? Well, the two chord is D minor, the five chord the one chord is D. What about f dominant seventh. The two chord is C five chord is our one chord is B flat, E flat seven. So the two chord is a flat five chord is the one chord is what about B seven? The two chord is F sharp minor, five chord is be the one chord is what about a flat seven? The two chord is flat five chord is a flat, a one chord is D flat. What about F sharp so the two chord is C sharp minor. The five chord is F sharp seven, the one chord is the major. What about G chord is D minor. five quarters g7 one chord is C D flat seven. two chords D flat minor five chord, D flat. The one chord is G flat, B flat seven. chord is F minor. five chord is B flat, the one chord is and then finally g7 to coordinate minor five D, the one chord. Great job. Alright, so now let’s just go chromatically Okay, let’s go chromatically and we’re just gonna say what the 251 is in each key. So D minor seven g7, C major. And then E flat minor seven, flat seven, E flat major, a minor seven, seven, Major. F minor seven, E flat seven, E flat major, F sharp, F sharp minor seven, seven. Major, G minor seven, seven, Major, a minor seven, flat seven, G flat major. A minor seven, seven, a major minor seven, flat seven, A flat major, a minor seven, seven, a major, C minor seven, f seven, flat Major. And finally, C sharp minor, F sharp, dominant seven, D major. So that is all of your 251 progressions. We’ve done them in random order, we’ve gone up by half steps. We’ve tried just doing you know giving you the two chord giving you the five chord. Okay, so now you just listen back to this podcast episode over and over, it really should start to lock in that 251 progression for you. As always, if You need help. And especially if you’re a member of jazz edge, be sure to join me on Thursdays for my confident improviser q&a sessions. Right. So every Thursday at 1pm, Eastern, the link is right in the site, right. If you’re not a member of jazz edge, you’d like to learn more, just go back to jazz edge.com. All right. So that’s it for this quiz. I’ll see you guys in the next episode.
Unlock the mysteries of this popular jazz chord progression.
Hey guys, Willie Myette, creator of jazz and I want to welcome you to episode number 15 of the confident improviser podcast. So today we are going to be talking about the 251 progression, and it’s 251 progression deciphered. So what I’m going to be doing is I’m going to show you how to unlock the mysteries of this popular jazz chord progression. So now this podcast goes along with the confident improviser course, which you could find back at jazz edge. If you’d like to watch the video for this podcast and also get the sheet music, all of that is back at jazz edge, you can also go back to the confident improviser.com for more information. All right, so 251 progression deciphered. So first of all, when we are going to try and find a 251 progression and create a 251 progression, we have to remember that it all comes off of the major scale. So that’s where we start first, here’s my C major scale, C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C, pretty simple. C major scale all white notes from C to C. So that’s the first thing that we need to start with, we need to be able to know what our major scale is, and know all of the sharps and flats that go along with that major scale. Alright, so there’s our key of C. Next step, we just simply number the notes 12345678, or one. So number one is seen number two is d three is E, F is four, and so on. Okay, so if we take a look at it, immediately, we could see what we could see that two is D, five is G, and one is C. So already, we start to have the outline of our 251 progression in the key of C, right, and that would be a D to A G to a C. Now the next step gets a little bit more tricky. And this is where we are going to create diatonic seventh chords on each note of the scale. Now, this looks a lot more complicated than it is, let me play it for you. So you can hear. Right,
so even in playing that right there, it’s kind of like whoa, you know, it kind of seems like, that seems a little bit complicated, right? In reality, though, it’s not all that complicated. So what we’re doing is, I am creating a seventh chord, which is a four note chord on each note of the C major scale. And all I’m doing is using the notes from the C major scale. So that means that it’s going to be all white notes in the key of C to C here that I’m not playing any black notes in my chords, okay, all white notes in the chord, because they’re all coming from the C major scale. Now when we move into another key a little bit later, you’ll see that that’s going to change but in the key of C, it’s all white notes. That one chord is a major seventh chord to chord is a minor seventh chord, three chord is a minor seventh, four core is a major seventh five chord is a dominant seventh, okay, pay attention to that. Six chord is a minor seven, seven chord is a minor seven, flat five, some people call it half diminished. I like minor seven, flat five personally, and then one is major. Okay, so now, I said pay attention to the five chord being dominant, okay? It’s because there was only one dominant chord in each key, and that is the five chord, you’ve probably heard about dominant motion, right? Moving from five to one. Okay, so the G seven to see that is your dominant motion g seven resolving to see, that’s five resolving to one. Okay, now, the two chord here is my D minor chord. So D minor, g7, C major, that’s my to my five, my one chord progression in the key of C. Now a couple of things we need to cover. First of all, you see up here on the top, we’re using Roman numerals. So an uppercase I, a lowercase I, lowercase II, for three, uppercase IV for four uppercase V for five, lowercase v i for six, lowercase v II for seven. Right? So first of all, why do we use Roman numerals? Well, partly because it’s just what we’ve always done in analysis. Okay, so harmonic analysis and music has utilized Roman numerals for quite a while. So we continue to do that. There’s also another practical purpose, you’ll see that I have some uppercase and lowercase Roman numerals. Now and again, you might see the analysis written without any chord symbol. Now in this particular example, I still put caps Little I triangle seven, meaning a one major seventh chord. For the two chord, I have two lowercase eyes. So lowercase i is the minus sign, and a seven. So that’s telling me that it is a two minor seven chord. Okay? Now the reality though is that if we have uppercase and lowercase, we can use uppercase for majors and lowercase for minors. So in this two chord when it’s two lowercase, with a minus seven, the minus seven is almost redundant, right? We almost don’t need that because if we just put a lowercase two, we will know that it is minor. So that’s the benefit of using our Roman numerals. We have case sensitivity, we have uppercase, and we have lowercase. uppercase means major, lowercase means minor. In this particular example, I’m writing out lowercase two, and also adding in the minor seven, just to make sure that everyone understands that it is a two minor seven chord. Okay, so now let’s put together the 251 progression. So we have D minor, seven g7, C major seven, I’m going to play those chords in my right hand. So it’s D, F, AC, G, B, D, F, and C, E, G, B, they’re just gonna play my roots in the left hand. So again, those notes, D, F, A, C, for D minor g7, the notes are G, B, D, F, seven, and a notes for C major seven, or C, E, G, B. So that is our 251 progression right there. Okay, so you can stop right there, you understand 251 progression, but we’re going to continue on because we have more to do. Now the 251 progression like this is fine. But it sounds much better. If we use inversions. Take a look at that.
Does that sound better than moving? This one really sounds like we’re moving all over the place. Where’s this one
sounds a little bit smoother voice leading, okay. And voice leading is the way that the notes of one chord, move to the notes of the next chord. That’s your voice leading. So D minor, right? This is root position D minor. So d f AC, when we go to the g7. I take those top two notes at a D minor and I move them down. Okay. And now I have D, F, G, B, D, F g b, and that is my G seven chord in second inversion. Then I take the bottom two notes of the G and move them down to C and E. And now I have my C major seventh chord, C, E, G B, that again is in root position. So D minor seven root position D, F AC, g seven second inversion, D, F, G, B and then C major seventh root position, C, E, G, B, okay. All right. So that’s our 251 inversions. Okay, so now, we’re going to start to find some 251 progressions in an actual jazz standard. So what I wrote here, look for a minor chord, moving to a dominant chord, okay, let’s just stop right there. Minor chord moving to a dominant, it’s not a minor moving to a minor, it’s not a minor moving to a diminished, it’s not a minor moving to a major, it’s a minor chord moving to a dominant chord. And remember, a dominant chord is going to say something like g seven, G, nine, G, 13, G, seven sharp 11 g seven, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, right? That’s going to be your dominant chord. Okay? Now also, notice, I didn’t say it’s a major chord moving to a dominant chord, or it’s a dominant chord moving to a dominant chord, no, those those are different things. That’s not a 251 progression. So a 251 progression is a minor chord moving to a dominant chords, okay, that’s the two five part of the progression. Now the one part of it is typically a major chord, that could be a dominant, it could be a minor, there’s a little bit more gradation, there’s a little bit more gray area there and you have a little bit more flexibility. So that means that I could go D minor seven, two, g seven, C seven or D minor to G to C major for D minor, to g7 to C minor. Now typically when going to those Other chords like the minors the dominant, you might find that there’s going to be some alterations of the two, five progression. So a typical 251 progression is a minor chord moving to a dominant chord moving to a major chord. And again, how this works, it’s a minor chord moving to a dominant chord up a perfect fourth, or down a perfect fifth. So D, going up a fourth goes to G, right? Now, the one thing I didn’t write in here, which I will tell you is to find the one chord move up a perfect fourth from the five, seven. Okay. So, we go up a perfect fourth from the minor chord. Okay. And then we then go to our dominant chord. So we start with a minor chord, D minor, we go up a perfect fourth to a dominant chord, that’s g seven. And now to find the one chord go up a perfect fourth from the g7, make a major chord there. And that’s my one chord. Okay, that’s my one major chord. So again, let me show you an example. Start with D minor seven, we go up a perfect fourth, to g7. And then we go up a perfect fourth, again, to C major seventh. Now obviously, we’re not gonna go like this. It’s not a very good voice leading instead.
But just to get the chords, right, E minor, g7 to C major. So it starts on a minor goes up a perfect fourth row dominant goes up a perfect fourth to a major. Now, you’ll see here that I underline many times the one chord will be missing. In that case, just find the two, five, okay? All right. So now, we are going to actually put this into practice. Here I have beyond the sea, okay, pulling this right out of the eye real pro, a, be sure to download ireo Pro, get a real pro, if you don’t have it, right, it’s a great program, highly recommend it, you can get it on iOS or Android. It’s $15. As of right now, you know, I don’t know if it’s gonna go up or down. But that’s the price of it right now. Great program for backing tracks and playing along, you know, with harmony. So anyway, there’s your progression for beyond the see pulling up, right from IBO Pro. So what I want you to do is try and figure out the two fives on your own first. Okay, so once you try the analysis on your own first, there’s a PDF file in the members area of the confident improviser under exercise number 15. So just go back to the members area, and then you can under TCI 15, you can download this PDF file. Okay, so what I’m going to do is I’m going to go through it with you right now, but I just kind of gave this amount of time where you could just kind of like, pause the video if you want and then you know, see if you could do it on your own before I give you the answers. Okay, so now what we’re going to do is, and what you should be looking to do is try and find the 251 progressions, you don’t have to analyze the rest of the song, just try to find the 251 progressions. Now what I’ve done on the next page here, which I’m about to show you, is I have made a box around the two five progression, and I have kind of like a circle around the one chord, right. So we’re ready, go ahead and unpause the video and I will give you the answers. Okay, so here we are. The This is the analysis now for beyond the sea, I’m showing you all of the two five progressions, alright, and we’re just starting with the two fives, we’re not even adding in the ones just yet. Now, for those of you that are joining me on the podcast, let me count this out for you got 1-234-567-8910 1112 1314 teen to five progressions, okay, 14 to five progressions out of this song. Now if you take a look at this, usually if you saw the video, you would see there are a bunch of red boxes all over this page. And in fact, like half of the song is a two five progression of one sort or another. Okay, so now you’ll see that I have G minor seven, the C, that’s a two five, G minor and a seven c Yep, D minor seven, the G seven. There’s another two, five, B minor seven, e seven, right? There’s another two, five, and then everything else is just a copy D minor seven, the C, I’m sorry, D minor seven, the G seven, D minor seven, the G seven, G minor seven, the C seven. Right. Those are All to fives. Now in the next page, you’ll see I’ve circled where the one chord comes in. Now you’ll notice that sometimes the one chord isn’t there, like I’m showing you right here goes G minor seven to C seven, then D minor seven, the G seven, you see, there’s no one chord in there, it goes to five, and then moving on to a different to five. Oh, you know what, I missed one right here. Let me just fix that real quick for you. Okay, all right. So, at the beginning, here, we have G minor, seven to C seven to F six. Okay, so there’s my minor chord, going up a fourth through a dominant going up a fourth to a major. Remember, a six chord is still a major chord, okay? It’s a major sixth chord. And then you see it goes G minor seven, the C seven to F six, right? There’s another 251 progression. Now, the G minor seven, C seven over here does not resolve to anything, okay? Instead of 10 goes to a different to five D minor, seven, g7, to C seven. And you see I’ve put this in yellow, just because it’s a little bit different than your typical major, you know, Major, one chord.
There was another one I missed here as well, this one going up to a, right, so B minor, seven, e seven, a six, there’s another two, five, B minor, seven, e seven, a six and other two, five, D, G to C is a two, five D, G to C is a two, five, G, C to F less than one, two, F. There’s another two, five, right there. Okay. So you can see we got so many, two, five ones. What about this one here, G to C to D minor? Is that a 251? Or just a two five, G minor seven to C seven to D minor? Okay, well, G minor seven, it’s a minor chord goes up a fourth, okay to see, yeah, that’s a dominant. Alright, so we got the two and the five, what about up a fourth from C, that should go to where C up to F, that should be F major, but instead it’s being played as a D minor. So that is not a 251 progression, it’s just a two, five. Now, the thing to understand about jazz is that we will have many different 251 progressions, or two, five progressions, and they do not necessarily always have to be within the key signature. Okay, this song right now beyond the C is written in the key of F, okay? So in the key of F 251, is G minor seven, C seven to F, that’s 251. But you’ll see here that I have D minor, seven g7. Well, that’s listed as a two five as well. And you might think, well wait a minute, D minor, seven is six in the key of F, G seven, doesn’t even really even function, the key of F, right, because there’s g seven, and the key of F, it should be a B flat, right, that should be your two chord. Now it’s a dominant chord, what’s going on there, and then moving down a little bit further, you have B minor to e to a, well wait a minute, that’s not in the key of F either. Well, the song happens to modulate into the key of A for the bridge. But regardless, that doesn’t matter. The point is, you will find pockets of two, five progressions, or like littered throughout a jazz standard, okay. And then what that means is that we have key centers, so the song might start in the key of F, it might continue through the entire song in the key of F might never modulate. Now this song, like I said, Does modulate temporarily to the key of A right and modulates over here to the key of C for a little bit, right, okay, and then modulates back to the key of F. Okay, so there’s a little bit of modulation there. But you will find some standards that do not modulate really, but they will have these pockets in which they move to different two fives, so you might have a to five in F G to C to F. But then as you’re going along, you might have a C minor to F seven to B flat, what just did a two five to the four chord doesn’t mean that we’re now in the key of B flat, it just did a two five progression to the forecourt. So the thing to understand the thing to remember is that your two five progression does not always have to be two and five of the key that you’re in, you might start in the key of C two five will be d two g, but you might have a bunch of other two five progressions within that same song, even though you never modulated outside of the key of C. Okay, gets complicated, sure, but the more you do it, the better you get at it. Alright, so anyway, if you have questions, feel free to join me on Thursdays at 1pm. The link is right in the site under the live training. I answer all of my confident improviser questions live every Thursday, one o’clock eastern time. And that’s it for me guys. So I will see you in the next podcast episode. Thanks for joining me
Organize your practice and get inspired. Download the journal here: https://jazzedge.com/lessons/tci-exercise-14/
Hey guys, Willie Myette, creator of jazz edge, I want to welcome you to this podcast for the confident improviser. This is podcast episode number 14. So today we are going to be talking about how to create and use inspiration journal and inspiration journal is a great way to organize your practice and get inspired and I’ll go through it in today’s podcast episode. First of all this podcast is works great with the confident improviser program, found the jazz edge. And the resources that I’m going to talk about in today’s podcast can be downloaded from the competent improviser exercise number 14. Lesson page. Remember, you can also find replays of this podcast if you just go back to the confident improviser.com. Alright, so how to create and use an inspiration journal. Right? So first of all, an inspiration journal is exactly what it is. It’s just a place where you can write down different ideas that you are inspired by, right and this might be chords, you know, chord voicings, it could be rhythms, it could be licks, it could be two handed licks. It could be comping rhythms, sky’s the limit, whatever it is that you find is interesting to you, you put into this into this inspiration journal right now, what I did for you is I created a inspiration journal, you know, basically a template that you can download printout and then you could utilize this as a start for your, your inspiration journal, keep wanting to say improvisation, right? So you’re seeing this inspiration journal that we have, you know, a Grandstaff here for measures. And then you’ll notice that it starts with an original key. And then new key number one, new key number two, new key number three. All right, so basically, what’s happening here is that this is showing you Hey, look, put in your original, and then put in at least three different keys, don’t worry, I’m going to show you some examples of how this all works in just a second. The other option is just a single line, write the original key and this goes into five other keys. So that gives you your whole six keys, right. And then the last page is all just blank, you get three staves of blank Grandstaff paper, and three staves of just a single note, you know, right hand line, you know, just one stave, okay? So you could utilize those to create out your inspiration journal. Alright, so let’s take a look at an example here, because it’s going to be a lot easier once you see an example. Alright, so here is a, you know, just this little, you know, lick over E minor seven, to a seven, flat nine. In the left hand, all I’m doing is a very simple root three on E minor, so it’s E and G, and then my root three, seven on the a seven chord, which is a C sharp and G. And the right hand, I’m starting on D. Okay, so I started the D, which is the seventh, fifth,
third 11th or four, five, and I go to the flat nine on the eighth seventh to the root to the seventh, and then back to the roots. Okay, so a pretty basic, you know, lick phrase here, but I like the sound of it. So I want to remember that right. So okay, so now I’ve written it out in my original key. You notice what I wrote here is on the last two measures measures three and forks. Remember I told you it was four measures on the line? Well, this lick here is only two measures long, so then I’ll just leave the last two measures blank, right, then I go to my new key number one, you see that I’m in the key of F, I got one flat here. So now I’m going to play an F. So what I’ve done is I’ve written it out in the new key, I have it here, a minor to D seven, I have the left hand, I have the right hand, it’s all written out. So now if you’re listening to me in the car, or something you’ll see on this, like when you take a look at the lesson, in exercise 14, you’ll see that what you’ll find on the screen here is that I have written out the original exercise or the original lick the original idea, the original thing that I put in my inspiration journal, I have now written it in a new key, hey, which key should I write it in, write it in whatever key you want, or the original key was in the key of C major. So I went to F major next. What’s the next one? I’m done. Okay, here I’m going to E flat. So now I’m starting on G minor.
And you’ll notice that your fingering will likely have to change when you move into other keys. This is what is really great about moving these licks into other keys is that it forces you to have to figure out new fingering for these patterns, right so there are in the key of B flat, and finally, I’m going to go to the key of G. So I’m going to start on my B minor chord, it’s now what I should be able to do is I should be able to go through and play each one of these keys, one after another, I’m gonna have to scroll a little bit, so bear with me. So here it is in C. Here it is an F. Here it is in E flat. And then finally, here it is in G. Now I could keep going, and I could play in all 12 keys if I want to. But the reality is, I found that if you go into at least four or five, six different keys, that usually gives you enough to be able to kind of get the idea of the lick down, understand it, and then have it in your memory, all right, and be able to you know, you know, get the facility to be able to play it in real time, right? If you want to go through all 12 keys, that’s fine. But I usually reserve that for the licks and whatnot, that I really want to make sure that I know all all around the piano, okay, so those real special licks, or chords, or you know, whatever, those are the ones that you really want to go through all 12 keys, because obviously, going through all 12 keys can take quite a bit of time. So now when I move on to the single note line, you see I have a very simple c seven here. And then I have you know, there’s this, this basic little line here, this basic improvisational phrase here. I like that, okay, it starts on the E flat and it goes up to the E triplet, right up to the seventh. And in the fifth to the sixth, back to the fifth. So in C, it’s E flat, G, A, B flat, G, ag. Okay. So, there, you’ll notice that I don’t have any left hand written, why because it’s really not about the left hand, it’s really the right hand that I’m really focusing on, you know, trying to remember. So I might do a rootless chord voicing, I might do a root three, seven chord voicing, I might do a root seven, it could even be a baseline. Now you see that I moved into f here as well.
I can move this
around, but it isn’t cheap.
He flat. Right, so
I can move that lick all all over the place. Now what you will notice is that sometimes some of these legs are gonna work well in some keys, not well, and other keys. Like if I move this to D, write that F natural up to the F sharp may feel a little bit weird, you know, you might have to work that out and practice that a little bit more. The point though, here is that you can do two handed or a Grandstaff full staff, you know, write that out. So write out the left hand and the right hand. But you can also just write out the right hand as well. You don’t have to write out the cord. Okay, I oftentimes like doing this kind of notation, just the right hand line, when it’s just some, you know, improvisational phrase that I want to remember, I don’t really care about the left hand, because I’ll put in whatever left hand I want at the time. Right. So this is a great way of being able to document what’s the lick that I want to remember, right. So this works really well. Now, you can also utilize this technique to write down different chord voicings that you like the sound of check out some of these core voices these sounds really cool, right? So here is a C minor 11 voicing. So here in the left hand, I have C, G, and D. in the right hand, I have a flat F, B flat D. Now I’m going to tell you that this voicing is very difficult to be able to hit depending on the size of your hands, right? It’s okay, I’m still going to write down the voicing I can reach it. But let’s say that you can’t reach that voice. It’s still good to write it down. Because even if you can’t reach a chord, you can still arpeggiate it.
So you can still utilize the court in arpeggiated form. So don’t think that has to this only has to be four chords that you can reach. No, it can be, you know chords that maybe you can’t reach, but you still want to write them down, just to remember what’s going on. Now you’ll notice here what I did in the analysis here as well, I wrote in the analysis in terms of, you know, each note how it relates to the chord, so I have the root, the fifth and the ninth, and blow this up a little bit so you guys can see it, right. And then I have flat 311, flat, seven, nine. Now, remember this too, you can always look at these chords and say, okay, maybe if you can’t reach that, but take off the top note the D, and then move the four notes in the right hand, and then just in the left hand, play root five. Now you get that beautiful sounding chord. Now, take a listen to that, versus the a version, B version. You can hear that top note in that B version of that voicing, okay. But and don’t get confused with the A and the B, I use that in my rootless voices, I’ve just using a and b just like, here’s voice of one, here’s voicing two. Okay. So maybe I should just say, here’s one. Here’s the alteration is the voicing. Here’s the alteration. Or I should say, here’s the voicing, here’s the alteration however you want to look at. But the point is that I could take out that top note right? That D, kind of rearrange the way that my fingers are playing that chord, I can now hit that chord no matter what size hand I got. And it still sounds really good. Okay, so you see how I could take the voicing, I could use it as an inspiration, I could play around with it, and then I could come up with something that works in my hand size. Here’s another voicing this f seven sharp 11. Now here, the point I want to make is that the analysis doesn’t have to be Oh, route 379, sharp 1113, okay, which is what’s going on here, what, seven, nine sharp 1113, you can also just analyze it using more of a text based approach. So here I said, are three, seven in the left hand, three, seven, right, when a major triad built on the second, that’s a major major triad built on the second, which is G. So it’s a G
major triad. So this type of analysis makes it a little bit easier for me to kind of be able to quickly recall that and utilize it somewhere else. All right, route three, seven, in the left hand, with a major triad built on a second, let me do this on C seven, the root three, seven in the left hand, C, E, B flat major triad, built on the second D major triad. There we go. Let me do it on B flat, B flat, D, a flat and the left hand is my root three, seven major triad built on the second, the second is C. So your analysis does not have to get into you know, the third day seven sharp 11 You don’t have to you don’t have to dive in that deep. You can kind of just, you know, write notes for yourself to something that you’re going to be able to understand later. Especially when you get into like things like portals. Rather than writing out all of the portals
you can just simply say portal built on the route right now I know of if I were to write down for myself quartal built on the root, I know that it’s two stacked perfect fourths built on the root. Here it is and see, okay, so portal built on the root, and then maybe in the right hand, minor triad on the on the ninth. It gives a nice such for sound. Third, and they’re gonna create like a minor 11 voicing. Okay. But anyway, the point is that I could kind of write notes and use more of a text based approach. And it’s a little bit easier to understand my analysis. Last thing is, you can also use this inspiration journal to write down rhythms that you like, so here’s a rhythm that I like, but triple A d by d by dy, but triple ed d by d by dy. Okay, so here’s a rhythm I like, Alright, well, now, you know, I can write that down, I could write down a bunch of different rhythms that I that I enjoy, and and I can use them as inspiration for practice. So let’s talk about that for a second. So, you know, I said that you can utilize this inspiration journal to help, you know, organize, but then also Well, when I say organize your practice, and get inspired, so how do you I think you understand the organization, but let’s talk about that. So when you sit down to practice, you know if you have, I don’t know, a half an hour an hour to practice Maybe you might say, Okay, look, you know what, I want to take 510 minutes and go through my lick journal. So then what you can do, I literally use the lick journal or inspiration journal. All right, I want to take 510 minutes and go through my inspiration journal. So I’m going to pull out that inspiration journal right now that might be all of those sheets might be in a binder, maybe what you might decide to do is get a spiral bound staff paper notebook and do your own inspiration journal, whatever, if you utilize the ones that I’ve created for you, and you download and print them, I suggest putting them in a three ring binder, so you keep it all nice and organized. Alright, so then what you do you, you know, pull out that inspiration journal, and maybe you go to the corn section and you like, you know, have that, that chord there again, and maybe what you do is, you know, for five or 10 minutes, you just try messing around with that chord. You don’t see like, Can you move it around to other, you know, other places on the staff. Right? So here I am on C minor. Well, let me go ahead and do this on F. Alright, so now what do I got? So there it is on F. Now what you might notice is when you move to another key, oh, lo and behold, that’s a little bit easier to be able to hit that, you know, in the right hand, here it is. In G, that might be tough again, to be able to hit that. But the point is, you take the chords during that practice time you’re looking for something to practice, this is a great way to organize your practice, write down those chord symbols of those chord voicings that you’ve been wanting to learn, write, write down in the original key, write it out and transpose if you want, or transpose it on the fly completely up to you how you do that. But the point is, you go back to that journal, and that’s a great way of knowing Oh, these are the voicings that I’ve been wanting to learn, rather than sitting down at the piano or not knowing Hey, hey, what what what am I doing? Okay, those are the voicings that I wanted to learn. Now, you might also sit down and say, hey, look, I just want to like be inspired right now. And I just want to like, you know, maybe I’ve done my practice time. And I’m going to come back to the piano a little bit later in the day. And I just want to like have some inspiration. Well, this inspiration journal, you know, you don’t have to write down licks or ideas that you’ve gotten from other people.
These could be your own
licks and ideas. Right? So maybe you have like a C seven chord here. And you think, Okay, well, you know what, I’m going to use that altered scale. That’s interesting. Okay, let me let me take that. Let me let me move that idea around into a bunch of other chords, right? Or maybe you might start the beginning part of a song. Maybe you write in your inspiration journal, something like this.
I like that. I don’t know where I’m gonna go with it yet. But I like you might you write down something you played around with an idea, you’ll write it in your inspiration journal. And then when you’re looking, you know, to, you know, work on some improv or create a song or you know, whatever, you pull out that inspiration journal, and there it is waiting for you. Okay, so, to wrap up, how do you use this, this inspiration journal, you use it, whichever way works best for you. My suggestions are this number one, when you come across some licks that you like, or chord voicings, or rhythms, you know, whatever it is that you like, that you see written in music and might be, you know, in the jazz edge music, it might be in a real book, it might be something you transcribe, transcribed, it might be something that you saw somewhere else, doesn’t matter. Okay, what you’re doing and the idea that you should have in mind of this inspiration journal, is you’re taking all of these other sources, right? All these disparate sources, you know, multiple sources, you taking the information that you like, that you want to, you know, review, and you’re bringing it into your inspiration journal. So this inspiration journal is what inspires you. Okay? This isn’t stuff that like, well, I really should practice this. No, this is the stuff that you really want to practice. Now, as I said, in the TCI, 14, inspiration lesson, you don’t have to write out the lyrics, right? If you want to, like if you’ve got it in sheet music form, you can print it, cut it out, and literally just paste it right into your inspiration journal. That’s fine as well. You could use things like Sibelius, Muse score, whatever you Create your own, it’s completely up to you this inspiration journaling that I that I’m giving to you, though, you could download it, you can print off all those sheets. Page Number three is blank, it doesn’t have any title, no logo, nothing like that. So you can print out those, many of those, put them in a binder for yourself. Or like I said, you could just get a manuscript book and that would be absolutely fine also, but you use the inspiration journal, however it works best for you. I like to do it for lyrics for chord voicings, for rhythms, maybe tune ideas, maybe even reharmonization ideas, whatever it is, but that journal is a great place of bringing all that material back to one centralized location. Okay. And then when you’re going to sit down and you’re going to practice and you’re looking for some inspiration, you’re looking for something to practice, you’re looking to, you know, compose or improvise or whatever, you go back to that inspiration journal, and bam, there you go, you got something that can help you organize your practice, and definitely inspire you. Alright, so that’s it for. That’s it for me. Be sure to go back to the confident improviser exercise number 14, you can download the inspiration journal and and also download the examples that I was showing in this podcast. Right. And then of course, if you’re a member of jazz edge and working through the confident improviser, please be sure to join me on Thursdays, you know, always check the links on the site, make sure there is no change in times. But Thursdays at 1pm is when I do my live q&a session for all of my jazz edge members. If you’re not a jazz edge member, take a look at jazz edge comm it’s a great site, great community, a lot of incredible students from all over the world, you know, sharing their ideas, staying accountable to one another, learning new stuff. So we’ve got a great group of students. And if you’re not a member already, I’d love to see you in the site. Alright, so that’s it for me. Thanks for joining me. I’m Willie Myette from jazz edge. I’ll see you in the next podcast.