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Re: Jazz Bass Solo

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Posted by Carol Kaye on December 29, 1999 at 03:40:58:

In Reply to: Re: Jazz Bass Solo posted by Ed on December 23, 1999 at 12:43:25:

: : I know there are multitudes of books available to aid musicians in the playing of jazz. I subcribe to Bass Player magazine that contains columns and practice lessons written by accomplished bassists. I'm looking for a simplified method of selecting notes to incorportate into my jazz solos. Can anyone recommend a media that expedites and suggests jazz note selections (scales, arpeggios, runs, etc.), to jazz chords? Example: Diminished, half diminished, and whole tone scales can be played against a dominant 7th chord.

: Fritz, man, there is a lot more to this playing jazz stuff than picking out the right chord scales. If you're serious, start listening to a lot of it and start transcribing solos off records. Transcribe and sing them at half speed, so you can get all the nuances and phrasing. There is a videotape floating around of Bill Evans talking (and playing examples) of what he means by jazz "approximations", where you kinda just play notes that fit t6he chords, it just doesn't mean or say anything. Knowing a diminshed scale works over a V chord and "hearing" a diminished scale over a V chord are two different things.
You have to start thinking chordally, and the only way to do that is stop practicing those scales - jaz was formed on chordal tones, not scales. Jazz musicians (I had the blessing to play with the best in LA/Hollywood/Bay area in the 50s), all played standards with lots of chords, and that's the most valuable experience. Then you get wise to the extended triads, the phrasings, the milking, all the inside stuff, the pivotal b5 patterns, when to use them, the chordal scale stuff with the minor chords (they're always considered ii chords, no matter where they are in the tune)'s all in my new book "Jazz Improv On Bass, step-by-step how to do it, highly endorsed by John Clayton, Mo Foster says "brilliant, wish I'd have had this 30 years ago", etc. Has the all-great Joe Pass continuity studies in the back for the furthering of connecting all the chord subsitutes, and as a way to "think". Well, you don't think once you've had your studies down. People keep asking me "what do you think while doing your jazz improvising?" I tell them "hmmmm, what have I got on the agenda tomorrow, and what time is it, and yes, got to pick up some groceries on the way home". It gets as easy as that. Backcyling, etc. is easy to do, and no, you don't put "this over that" at play that! No guessing games, no brain stretchers, no false tricks that don't work, just the way the real jazzers do it....I always believe in teaching the real stuff, nothing corny, music is too precious a gift and an expression of your entire inner self to fool around with things that don't work or are corny. Lots of books out there, but this one is honed from years of real jazz playing (still playing jazz, hear our new "Thumbs Up" jazz CD w/Ray Pizzi, Mitch Holder, soundbyes) and teaching it for years too. It works.

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