Next semester I'll be playing in the vocal jazz ensemble at school because the guy that usually does all the jazz stuff is pretty swamped. I'm glad to be doing it but it's a little daunting at the same time because I've played pretty much only classical on upright up until now. I've played some jazz on BG and have read all the articles on TB about creating walking lines so I have a general idea of what to do and what to work on but I still have a few questions. On the chart when it just tells what chord is being played, BbMaj for example, and has the / / / / underneath it is it unacceptable to deviate from four quarter notes that bar? On the recording I have (the bass is VERY buried) it seems as though the bass plays whole and half notes in the slower songs. There are also times when it seems the bass isn't playing on the beat at all but just being kind of 'free'. Is this normal? All of the jazz records I have are pretty straight ahead so I'm not really accustomed to hearing what the bass 'normally' does in slower songs and ballads. Any help or web sites would be appreciated. I do have a teacher but he seems to be about as clueless as I do about jazz. I do plan on trying to meet with the sax teacher though.