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Discussion in 'Ask Steve Lawson & Michael Manring' started by eric234, May 7, 2005.

  1. eric234

    eric234 Guest

    Mar 11, 2005
    hey i was just wondering how you guys learned how to improvise because i'm getting into jazz and prog rock and to do most of that as you well know you need to improvise
  2. I'm sure there are TB'rs who will give you a better answer than mine, but I may be the starting point.

    1) You need to know your fretboard, so that you know where all the notes are.
    2) You need to know your scales, so that for each key, you know which notes will always work, and which to use with caution.
    3) You need to know at least one way of getting from any root note to any root note, in the right number of beats, without thinking about it.

    When you can memorise a chord sequence, and put a bass line to it without thinking, then you can start thinking about how you will play it differently next time round. That's your starting point (and I haven't got there yet).
  3. If you know your basic major and minor chord shapes, just play around with the notes and you'll come up with something cool. Once you memorize your scale and chord shapes, it will come more naturally.
  4. Widener


    Nov 21, 2004
    Aptos, CA
    The Jazz Theory Book, by Mark Levine helped me a lot. I recommend it.
  5. Bassist4Life


    Dec 17, 2004
    Buffalo, NY

    Mike Dimin is helping out TB'ers on this topic right now! He is having us practice improvisation through the tune Blue Bossa. There are finger charts and a play along file. It's a great thread with lots of information. I have been working on my improvisation for a few weeks and making tons of progress. See you over at Mike's forum.


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