What is the perfect jazz tune to practice?

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by Clifford-D, May 30, 2008.

  1. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

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    One of them has to be

    All the Things you Are by Jerome Kern

    This tune has just about every kind of chord change in it.
    Major and Minor II V I's

    The A section is in C minor/Eb major

    The bridge is in G and E major

    The last section is in F minor.

    Pretty fun tune, mildly to moderately challenging.
    Hopefully it will get discussed in depth here.


    What's your perfect jazz tune for practice???


    :)
     
  2. cameron

    cameron Member

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    I've heard it referred to as "All The Chords You Know"
     
  3. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

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    I've heard it called "All the things you ain't"?
     
  4. derekd

    derekd Supporting Member

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    Wonderful tune, has lots of things to teach. Not one that I start out beginner jazz students though. I pick Solar, Tune Up and Autumn Leaves for them.

    ATTYA is one of the best though, no doubt.
     
  5. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

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    What's your favorite tune to practice with?
     
  6. pfrischmann

    pfrischmann Member

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    Round Midnight...just cause
     
  7. JonR

    JonR Member

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    I like Jobim tunes personally.

    Girl From Ipanema
    Wave

    I also have a soft spot for Django's Nuages, a great sequence.

    You're right about ATTYA, and Autumn Leaves - and things like Stella By Starlight - if mainstream jazz conventions are what you need to practice - because of all the cycle-of-5ths moves. Personally I get bored with all them damn ii-V-Is, those medium swing tempos, aaargh....

    Of course, that's my problem. (There's always new ways to play those old tunes, that's the challenge. I'm just too lazy to bother.:rolleyes:)

    I love Monk, but his best tunes are damned hard to solo on. Which makes them fun of course.
     
  8. dewey decibel

    dewey decibel Supporting Member

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    There is no perfect tune. The way I look at it, each tune will have a couple little devices that you have to learn how to deal with. Becoming a good jazzer is about becoming familiar with as many of these little devices as you can and how to use them. That way when you encounter one on a new tune (or as a sub on an old one) you'll understand it. Of course the basic device is the ii-V-I, but then you get other things that can be unique to a tune. In "All The Things..." there are lots of ii-V-Is, but then you have the changing key centers, like Ab to C. Also the little descending chords part- Db | Dbmin | Cmin | Bdim... after you get that you can then play over soemthing like bars 9-12 of "Someday My Prince Will Come". Learn the A section to "Someday..." and you can play over the beginning of "Stairway to the Stars".

    Right now I've been playing through "Pensativa" a lot, and I realize that Cedar Walton uses a lot of the same devices in his tunes like "Bolivia" and "Ugetsu". I've been playing those tunes for years, but now I understand them a little better. So like I said, it's just about being able look at the musical devices in these tunes and learn how to use them and play over them.
     
  9. Flyin' Brian

    Flyin' Brian Member

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    Some oy my favorites:

    All The Things... for the changes
    'Round Midnight for the harmonization
    Angel Eyes for the mood
    Old Folks cuz I am
    So What .. for the challenge of creating something interesting out of few chords
    Blues...hey who doesn't like playing blues? But not just I-IV-V. Use all of the changes, tritone subs, different turnarounds, Bird changes etc.
     
  10. giggedy

    giggedy Member

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    I'm just getting into playing jazz, from a rock/jamband background. What would you guys suggest for the first song to start on. I'm looking for something with an obvious, basic 251 progression.
     
  11. mcuguitar

    mcuguitar Gold Supporting Member

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    "Autumn Leaves" is the perfect jazz tune to start with, because it contains both a major and minor ii-V sequence. Learn it in one key, and then transpose it to all 12 keys using the circle of fourths. My Berklee guitar instructor Al Defino had me switch keys after each time through the entire form. Good luck, Jon.
     
  12. giggedy

    giggedy Member

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    Actually, I started learning that a few weeks ago, but was going off of tabs, I'll go back to that minus the tabs this time. Thank you!
     
  13. John Coloccia

    John Coloccia Cold Supporting Member

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    ROFL

    Very true.
     
  14. GovernorSilver

    GovernorSilver Member

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    As much as I enjoyed studying with my jazz guitar teacher, the only thing I questioned was having to learn All The Things You Are as a first tune, for the reasons mentioned by others.
     
  15. connor117

    connor117 Supporting Member

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    i would also look at a rhythm changes tune like oleo, anthropology...

    if your talking about the perfect tune, this progression is one of the most classic in jazz and theres so many way to play thru it. diatonically, blueslike, pentatonics, 2 or 4 bar phrases....

    think about playing the last A differently that the others

    then start messing with chord subs like tritone or passing diminished chords or add the preceding minor to every dominant in the bridge.

    THEN>>>>> bump it up a half step (or a 4th or 5th) every chorus.
     
  16. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

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    That's cool you mentioned "Pensativa" I was just thinking of that tune today myself. Love that tune. Now I'm thinking of it again.

    You make some excellent points.
     
  17. Elektrik_SIxx

    Elektrik_SIxx Member

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    The best tune to practice in your situation (practically the same as mine) is Blue Bossa.
    It more or less consists of a II-V-I in C minor and one in d-flat, so you get to practice them both in an easy manner.
    After that you could go to Autumn Leaves or whatever.
     
  18. monkmiles

    monkmiles Supporting Member

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    Going from a rock/jamband to jazz...that sounds like me from a few years ago! I doubt you'll find "the one" song to start on. Better to try a handful. Maybe start with something like Satin Doll, Blue Bossa, or On Green Dolphin Street. Or maybe a jazzy blues like Freddie Freeloader, All Blues or Blue Monk.
     
  19. aram

    aram Member

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    i love stella.
     
  20. derekd

    derekd Supporting Member

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    Good question. It changes frequently. Currently it is Girl From Ipanema, but I probably have more time on Autumn Leaves than any other tune. I can dig deeper into it with subs and improv that other tunes I play because of this.
     

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