Recommend me a good jazz blues standard

ari

Member
Messages
990
for getting my feet wet on how to play over changes? Something not too hard for a jazz newbie?

Thanks!

ari
 

lhallam

Platinum Supporting Member
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17,183
ari said:
for getting my feet wet on how to play over changes? Something not too hard for a jazz newbie?

Thanks!

ari
Killer Joe
So What - only two chords
Satin Doll
Stolen Moments - cmin blues
Footprints - cmin blues
All Blues - g blues
Well You Needn't - F insane blues
 
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429
Killer Joe is a good one.After you get bored with it and want something a bit more challenging try All of Me and After You're Gone.
 

Tom Gross

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While they are great to start with, blues-based and modal stuff don't do as good a job of teaching how to play over changes as something with ii-V-I stuff going on. That's cause it's too easy to sound ok just using Blues & Rock licks over the former stuff.
I'd say try something like Autumn leaves.
 

lhallam

Platinum Supporting Member
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17,183
Tom Gross said:
While they are great to start with, blues-based and modal stuff don't do as good a job of teaching how to play over changes as something with ii-V-I stuff going on. That's cause it's too easy to sound ok just using Blues & Rock licks over the former stuff.
I'd say try something like Autumn leaves.
Agreed about the modal and blues comment but as you know it depends upon the player. Just presenting some easy stuff.

Another easy one but has some ii V's is Blue Bossa.

Also, you should learn "I've Got Rhythm" as theme and variation on those changes are used in other standards.
 

ari

Member
Messages
990
Tom Gross said:
While they are great to start with, blues-based and modal stuff don't do as good a job of teaching how to play over changes as something with ii-V-I stuff going on. That's cause it's too easy to sound ok just using Blues & Rock licks over the former stuff.
I'd say try something like Autumn leaves.
Well, I am interested in learning how to play jazzier blues, as I thought maybe that's a good starting point for getting into jazz. But I'll try ii-V-I based stuff also.

The problem I've had with simpler ii-V-I stuff is that while key center changes are slow enough and easy enough to adjust, what I'm playing just doesn't sound jazzy to me, at all. It sounds like me playing major/minor scales over some chords. So I thought, maybe what I should do is try playing songs that have mostly familiar structure like blues, but has one or two out of the key chords that pop up that I have to adjust to.

Anyway, any other tips is appreciated. I know a teacher is probably the most efficient way to go... I've looked at various beginner jazz lessons online for a while now.

ari
 

fernmeister

Member
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32
try ain't got nothing but the blues, a duke ellington tune that was covered very well by robben ford (talk to your daughter album). the changes are quite nice and whilst you can play blues ideas, you can also expore some other scales as well.
 
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72
"Watermelon Man" is a good Jazz/Blues vein.

"Cantloupe Island". Not a lot of changes, but I teach students trumpet solo for a good starter on Jazz soloing.


"Straight No Chaser".

Check out Charlie Christian and Kenny Burrell as well.
 

StevenA

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3,977
Remember, just because you are playing over a jazz standard doesn't mean you are playing jazz. Jazz has a vocabulary just like rock, metal, country etc. For access to this vocabulary start referencing Charlie Parker. Here you will be introduced to the hip rhythmic and melodic figures that all jazz players are accustomed. After that it will be easier to play over any jazz tune. To answer your question specifically, Autumn Leaves, I got Rhythm, All the things you are, are probably at the top of the new students list.

Good luck
Steven
 

neve1073

Member
Messages
199
StevenA said:
Remember, just because you are playing over a jazz standard doesn't mean you are playing jazz. Jazz has a vocabulary just like rock, metal, country etc. For access to this vocabulary start referencing Charlie Parker. Here you will be introduced to the hip rhythmic and melodic figures that all jazz players are accustomed. After that it will be easier to play over any jazz tune. To answer your question specifically, Autumn Leaves, I got Rhythm, All the things you are, are probably at the top of the new students list.

Good luck
Steven
Good say.
I'd recommend "Autumn Leaves" to get a feel for what playing over changes well is going to demand of you. It's not a hard tune, but it's got everything.

I would not start with the modal stuff...it's simpler, but it's harder.

Good luck, have fun.
 

littlemoon

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Messages
857
Do you really want to learn some standards, or do you seek more instruction on how to play over the changes in a typical jazz blues progression (I-VI-ii-V)? If the latter is what you seek, then standards won't be an efficient path, unless you are transcribing somebody's recording. What you will need is a working familiarity with symmetrical scales (diminished, dominant diminished, whole tone) and with the melodic and harmonic minor scales and their modes. To simplify the approach, start by knowing the progression inside and out - play it to own it, and learn some of the myriad variations of the progression that can be made with chord substitutions. Understand the theory of tri-tone (b5) substitutions and how they work and are used within the progression and practice those until you have it. It's not difficult at all, but you have to pay attention to what's going on at first or you'll miss the gist of it.

After you know the progression and some of it's popular variations, then you might start with the dominant diminished (half-whole diminished) scale and the melodic minor scale modes (or, if you prefer, superimpositions of melodic minor key centers [modes by another name]). You will need some guidance on exactly where in the progression you can use these scales to best effect and how (sequences, melodies, arpeggios, etc.) and where they are typically employed in the progression (i.e., on the One approaching the IV, over the VI, over the ii, over the dominant V, and in the turnaround). Then all you need to do is practice this knowledge and these ideas over a looped progression until you own them. It's not that difficult to accomplish, really, but clear, no-nonsense information on the topic is very hard to come by. You need someone or some writing to show you exactly where the scales fit in the progression. I would recommend Don Mock's publications ("Symmetrical Scales Revealed" and "Melodic Minor Revealed") but I'm sure there are other useful books in circulation. Unfortunately, you'll have to carefully screen the available publications for utility and clarity before you invest in them.

You don't have to learn it all in one sitting. You can learn some of the "tricks" and techniques in bite-sized bits that you can use in your playing immediately, without having to eat the whole enchalada. There's a lot of simple and immediately useful things to learn here that don't require a comprehensive knowledge of the big picture and a few tricks that can really add some polish and sophistication to your blues. Take as little or as much as you like. For example, focus on the I chord leading to the IV chord in the progression, learn the dominant-diminished (half-whole) scale in the root position, and practice getting that diminished sound in the transition from the I to the IV. After you learn that much, then move on to some melodic minor tricks (i.e., over the dominant V chord, play the melodic minor up a half-step from the key of the V chord (also known as the "altered scale"), but play in the position that's located nearest the root position of the I chord (or any other position nearest to where you happen to be soloing). There are lots of simple tricks like these that you can learn one at a time and use immediately.

Understand, you're probably going to sound mechanical and insipid, like the soloist in "Band-In-A-Box," at first, but that's cool - don't worry about it. After you get a feel for it, you're lines will become gradually more melodic and tasteful.

littlemoon
 

azgolfer

Member
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1,082
Check out Robben on "Cotton Creeper" from the Ford Brothers live album. Also Doodlin' on Live at Notodden. Allman Brothers, Stormy Monday, has a lot of chords, if you want a rock/blues sound over changes, it doesn't get any better. "Still Got the Blues" by Gary Moore is the same changes as "Autumn Leaves". He pretty much plays blues, just throws in the G# over the E7 chord sometimes. For a jazz player that's easy to learn from, try Chet Baker. "Summertime" is a good one to start on. Chet has a good version from one of his last concerts. Scott Lerner has a version on his site.
 

Jo

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999
As a newbie in the jazz realm I've enjoyed stuff like Autumn Leaves, Summertime, Blue Bossa and my personal fav Black Orpehus.
 

sideman

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2,315
Well, I'd recommend Ellington standards that are close to blues: "Don't Get Around Much Anymore" and "Take the A Train."
 

chrisgraff

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2,648
"D Natural Blues" - from "The incredible Jazz Guitar of Wes Montgomery"

Not a standard per se, but a great solo to learn if you're just getting started.
 

59burst

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1,420
chrisgraff said:
"D Natural Blues" - from "The incredible Jazz Guitar of Wes Montgomery"

Not a standard per se, but a great solo to learn if you're just getting started.
+1. This was the first tune I got started on when I started taking jazz guitar lessons (I was already an intermediate overall player). You can take the changes to "D Natural Blues", transpose to Bb, play in a fast swing tempo and horn players will love to jam with you. Those changes are what I would consider "standard" jazz-blues changes.

Some other jazz tunes in the blues vein, "All Blues" (note - this is in 6/8, not 4/4), "Blue Monk", "Freddie Freeloader", "Mr. PC". "Stormy Monday" is jazzier than most blues tunes and has some cool changes worth learning.

The other tunes people have mentioned for learning the language of jazz - All the Things You Are, Blue Bossa, Autumn Leaves, Take the A Train, etc - are right on!
 
D

Dana

Here's a list I use on gigs. Hope it helps.

Swing:
A Child is Born 2
A Foggy Day 6
Afternoon in Paris 10
All of Me 16
All of You 17
All the Things you Are 18
Alone Together 19
Anthropology 25
Autumn Leaves 36
Beautiful Love 39
Big Nick 44
Bright Size Life 64
But Beautiful 67
But Not for Me RB2 p50
Conception 90
Days of Wine and Roses 105
Dearly Beloved 107
Dear Old Stockholm 108
Dolphin Dance 122
Donna Lee 124
Don’t Get Around Much Anymore 126
Four 161
Four on Six 162
Freight Trane RB3 p88
Groovin’ High 181
Have you Met Miss Jones 186
How High the Moon 202
I Could Write a Book 209
I Love You 215
I Should Care 237
Impressions 220
In Your Own Sweet Way 232
It Don’t Mean a Thing 241
Jeannine RB2 181
Jordu 245
Just Friends 249
Lady Bird 259
Lazy Bird 259
Like Someone in Love 262
Long Ago and Far Away 272
Lullaby of Birdland 277
Milestones RB3 p193
Minority 295
Mr. PC 305
Night and Day 320
Night has a Thousand Eyes 322
Ohlos de Gato 328
Old Folks RB3 p218
Ornithology 335
Prince of Darkness 354
Serenade to a Cuckoo 377
Seven Steps to Heaven 379
Some other Time 389
Stella by Starlight 408
Sugar 414
You & Night & Music RB3 p349
West Coast Blues 455

Latin:
Adam’s Apple (Chart)
Affirmation RB2 p2
Blue Bossa 51
Black Orpheus 49
Ceora 73
Corcovado 94
Desafinado 112
The Dolphin 121
El Gaucho 135
Forest Flower 158
Gentle Rain 169
Girl from Ipanema 171
Green Dolphin St 179
How Insensitive 203
Here’s that Rainy Day 191
I’ll Remember April 218
Joy Spring 247
Little Sunflower RB2 p216
Lonnie’s Lament 273
My Little Boat 309
Nica’s Dream 319
Once I Loved 329
One Note Samba 331
Recordame 359
Sea Journey 370
Shadow of your Smile 381
Song for My Father 394
This Masquerade NRB p358
Triste 436
Povo (Chart)

Blues:
All Blues 13
Au Privave 32
Blue Monk 54
Blue Train 58
Blues for Alice 57
Equinox 139
502 Blues 153
Footprints 157
Freddie Freeloader 164
Night Train Chart
The Sidewinder 382
Stolen Moments 410
Straight, No Chaser 412

Ballad:
Blue in Green 53
Body and Soul 59
Crystal Silence 100
Darn that Dream 103
God Bless the Child 173
In a Sentimental Mood 223
My Funny Valentine 308
My Romance 311
Peace 340
Round Midnight 364

3/4 – 6/8
Alice In Wonderland 12
Blessed Relief 50
Bluesette 56
Emily RB3 p74
My Favorite Things 306
Someday My Prince Will Come 388
Windows 466

Funk:
Chameleon RB2 p58
Mr. Magic (Chart)
Cold Duck Time NRB p56
Mr. Clean NRB p223

Rock:
Red Clay 362
Watermelon Man RB3 p334
 

crazy4blues

Member
Messages
141
"Blues for Alice." That was one of the first "jazz" blues that I learned. Of course, I would also agree with just about everything that Dana has posted. What so important, though, is to listen to as many different versions of each song as you can.

BTW, there's two albums that I recommend for what I think that you're getting at: George Benson's Blue Benson and Mark Whitfield's True Blue. These two are rife with bluesy playing, and there's a good variety of tempos, chord changes, and feels.
 




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