Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by sean_on_bass, Dec 22, 2014.

  1. sean_on_bass


    Dec 29, 2005
    Curious how you all treat turnarounds in standards within a band context. I know a number of stock turnarounds, but how and when should i be applying these? Some turnarounds i just like, and will inject here and there. Some are already written into the tune on the chart..is it ok to modify these, or will this just make me clash with the rest of the band? Do folks ever chat about the turnarounds before playing the tune?

    Thanks all!
    J_Bass likes this.
  2. mattbassclark


    Jun 15, 2014
    If my teacher has taught me anything (and he has) it's that the real book almost never has the turnarounds correct...
  3. shwashwa


    Aug 30, 2003
    listen to the piano player. after a few choruses you will agree on something, then it will change
    lurk, Winfred, Seanto and 1 other person like this.
  4. tmntfan


    Oct 6, 2011
    Victoria Canada
    keep it simple on the head, play with what the soloist is doing during solo's.
  5. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

    Mar 16, 2004
    Richmond, CA
    Why not just use what's called for?

    If you're feeling inventive or want to insert tension then maybe try a turnaround out during a solo. If it doesn't work, don't play it again.
  6. Tom Lane

    Tom Lane Gold Supporting Member

    I thought about this and am thinking that it doesn't generally seem to matter. I realize that I play a turnaround that fits with the melody, the tune, and the moment, and not necessarily what's written. Aren't most turnarounds some version of I-vi-ii-V, two-beats each? With subs, chromatics, etc, it still all points back to the tonic, so depending on what the harmony instrument is playing, some basslines will create more or less tension. Off the top of my head, I can't think of two turnarounds that would unacceptably clash. And as Huy said, if I played something that didn't sound good to me, I'd only play it skeptically for the rest of that tune.
  7. sean_on_bass


    Dec 29, 2005
    Sounds like a good rule of thumb to me...do what works, and listen and adjust as needed.

    This post came out of some conversations with my piano buddy. He suggested we discuss the turnarounds...and we did for a couple rehearsals. Then i suggested he just play whatever he wants, and i will adapt. We were talking way too much about how we should play each tune before we played it...solo order, turnarounds, endings, etc. I was curious how those with more experience handled it.
    Wasnex likes this.
  8. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

    Mar 16, 2004
    Richmond, CA
    There's a transcription I was working on lately where it was obvious that a 3625 turnaround would be used. In listening closely to this particular tune that Vince Guaraldi arranged, all he did was sit on the tonic, move up a half step, and back down for 2 more bars. After so many tunes with so many uses of the standard turnaround, this sounded so fresh new and innovative. :)

    Of course when I went to play it on the gig, out came the 3625 because the piano player was hearing that instead. :meh:
  9. pdbass


    Jan 2, 2007
    Not sure if this applies, but I use several exercises to get my students to develop some kind of "language" to walk turnarounds. The trick is not to be right but to play whatever is called for in that moment, IMO. I'm sure many of us have played a rhythm changes that has been different every chorus.

  10. J_Bass

    J_Bass Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2008
    Porto, Portugal
    Nice topic, subscribed to see more contributions.
  11. Wasnex


    Dec 25, 2011
    IMHO What you do totally depends on your skill level and the skill level of the people you are playing with. I have had a few conversations over the years, but they were mostly for my benefit as I am sort of an intermediate jazz hack who mostly plays out of the Real Book.

    With some songs I stay fairly close to what is on the page, with other songs I insert turn arounds and substitutions. Some players are frustrated because I am not free enough, and some are frustrated because I actually throw in some chord subs.

    With other songs, I am fairly clueless, and feel the Real Book changes are not only wrong, but virtually unusable without consulting other sources.

    When playing blues or rhythm changes, I find it pretty hard to stick to the page. But I am pretty sure my harmonic vocabulary for these forms is pretty basic.

    Most of what I do is informed by my ear, and years of experience. So, although I do technically throw in subs, I don't necessarily have a conscious awareness of what I am doing; it's more of an instinctual thing.
    AGCurry, pdbass and tinyd like this.