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Jazz Theory Books

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by bass87, Jun 22, 2003.

  1. I'm looking to really brush up on my theory this summer and delve deeper into the wonderful world of jazz, and so want to buy a jazz theory book.

    I know everyone has given rave reviews to 'The Jazz Theory Book' by Mark Levine, and so before you all jump on my back and tell me to buy that, I was wondering if there are any other jazz theory books worth checking out? Or is Levine's book the be all and end all?

    Thanks for any responses :cool:
  2. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    Rufus Reid wrote a book. I can't remember the title of it right now. Goes to show how often I refer to it. But it's really a great book, it's just my laziness that keeps me away from it.

    Then, of course, is the Jamey Aebersold series. While many are simply play alongs, which is still a great way to learn theory, mind you, there are several, like Vol.1, that deal extensively with theory. His book on ii-V7-Is and Major/Minor are both very good as well.

    Then there's Ed Friedland's "Building Walking Bass Lines". Lots of musical theory in there.
  3. Thanks for the advice Jazzbo, I already have an Ed Friedland book; 'Expanding Walking Basslines,' and that has been a great help.
  4. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    Here's some more:

    "The Improvisor's Bass Method" by Chuck Sher

    "Mel Bay's Bass Improvising" by Earl Gately

    "Mel Bay's Complete Jazz Bass Book" by Earl Gately

    "Improvising Jazz Bass" by Richard Laird

    Books are excellent to get you started, but there is nothing like a teacher--if you can afford one or even find one--to help you interpret what the book is saying and give meaning and context to the information in the book.
  5. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    This one is a great starter book (volume 1 of 2):

    Frank Haunschild - The New Harmony Book

    You can find it at www.amazon.com
  6. Thanks for the suggestions bop, and I already have a teacher who is excellent. I was looking for some books to complement my time with my teacher, and to possibly work through with my teacher at lessons :cool: