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Looking to pursue the Jazz/Improv route...

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by slickhare, Feb 25, 2006.

  1. slickhare


    Feb 2, 2005
    and i need some help getting into the theory and such. i'm trying to learn the fretboard finally after a year in the dark working mechanics to death. so now i'm aspiring to get into jazz and improv. but the topic of theory seems so broad it's overwhelming.

    i was wondering if anyone could provide some advice on critical areas of theory i'd need to learn? and if this kind of experience would help me playing other genres as well?
  2. Nadav


    Nov 13, 2004
    Atlanta, GA
    I would recommend you start by picking up a theory book. Edly's Music Theory for Practical People was one that worked great for me. (www.edly.com)

    Beyond that, once you have the basics down, look into the highly regarded Jazz Theory Book by Mark Levine.

    Learn some piano. I'm slowly trying to pick it back up now.
  3. BassChuck


    Nov 15, 2005
    +1 on the Mark Levine book.

    I have 2 degrees in music, have played brass and bass professionally for 35 year, teach music (30 years) and every now and then serve time as the "Theory Nazi" in our band.

    I got the Levine book cause so many people in this forum talked about it. I have to say there is more than enough information and its ALL good. Best part is, Mark has written in a very easy to understand style.
  4. mVC


    Jan 28, 2006
    I would suggest seeking for a good teacher in your area, at least for learning the basics. Books are great, but IMHO nothing is good as a good teacher to guide you in the correct direction, especially if you are just starting it up.

  5. Aaron


    Jun 2, 2001
    Bellingham, WA
    I heard that Gary Peacock will often do an excercise with his students where he throws paint up on a canvas and tells he students to play it. The jazz improv classes I took in college was mainly doing abstract excercises like this one. In my opinion, music theory makes up the syntax and vocabulary of music, but that leaves about 90% left of what makes jazz- or music. I love Miles Davis's "Aura" - he plays colors.
  6. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I agree, but it's not really a beginner's book and I would recommend something like Ed Friedland's : "Jazz Bass" first! :)