You are on page 1of 159

.

.

.

.

When I began writing Jazz Tbeovy nearly twenry years ago. and Blues and “I Got Rhy- thm” variations are then introduced. The text’s organization is also designed to Show the teacher and student alike how to integrate the various . jazz pedagogy was at a much more formative stage. Once a foundation of basic theoretical language has been established. rather . The discography is quite specifically related to the musical examples referenced in the text. The order in which these topics are explored has been carefully organized so that the student can proceed from the most access- ible concepts in harmony and improvisation to those which are most complex. the topics of modal playing. then. It is designed in a topic-by-topic format. modal interchange. can be regarded as a fleshed-out syllabus. including biblio- graphy. and up to date. form. where students need first of all to be acquainted with the basic language of jazz harmonic theory. hopefully more clearly orga- nized version of my 1983 rext/azz Theoy. both musically and pedagogi- cally. reflect- ing the manner in which a course can be taught today in a liberal arts or undergrade institution. so that even an institution or individual wishing to start from scratch in reaching such a course could do so. Having spent a good deal of time since in liberal arts institutions. melodic embel- lishment and improvisation. inter- polated chords. then taken progressively through an examination of the various topics necessary to achieving an understanding of jazz harmony &d improvisation. Foreword and Acknowledgments How to use this book: This texr reflects the basic way in which I have taught my jazz theory and improvisation courses at a variety of primarily college- level institutions over the past twenty years. ‘. as have my per- sonal educational perspective and experience. This order of topical discus- sion does not mirror the historical evolution of the music. I feel that the bibliography is quite comprehensive. and relevant suggested assignments at the end of each chapter. I have had to reassess the assumptions one makes in structuring such a course of study. or in other educational and musical situations where the primacy of the jazz idiom (or even its validity as a field worthy of serious academic pursuit) was not taken for granted. discography. reflecting the changes in my teaching style and organizational method which have been a result of this evolving experience. . and all the record- ings are listed in their curently available forms. This text constitutes an updated.7 . Likewise.xxcellenc pedagogical resources available today into a structured study of music. The state of jazz pedagogy has changed radically during that time. The text. key-of-the-moment. relevant. and my own teaching experience had been primarily defined by my experiences in institutions with well-established jazz programs. More complex theoretical topics such as the uses of secondary and substitute Dominant harmonies. and the Blues are presented.

per- formed by the transcriber and collectively analyzed by the class. whose expertise in graphic calligraphy brought the musical examples to life. Fred Tillis for being an inspi- ration. in hopes that in some small way it will help give something back IO this wonderful tradition which has so enriched all of our lives. in-class performance projects to reinforce what is being studied in the text. mentor. Ann Maggs. Dan Richter for his editorial assistance. and role model for an aspiring jazz advocate for over twenty years. I would be remiss were I nor to thank the various people whose behind-the-scenes work helped ro make this text what it is. first and foremost. To study Blues. write one! Several transcrip- tions should be undertaken over the course of the year. Thomas M. listen to and transcribe several interpretations of the same melody. the most important artform to have evolved in the 20th century. jazz is an aural tradition. When studying “Rhythm Changes. whose attention to detail and knowledge of the recorded jazz repertoire created our bibliography and discography. or how it might be improved. I welcome any comments or suggestions on how the organization of this text works for you. coach.” write one! Eartraining and keyboard voice-leading exercises should be a regular part of the in. Zentawer and Michael Ebert. I would also be happy to communicate with anyone who might want some help in setting up or implementing this sort of curriculum. To study melodic variation. .class routine. This book is dedicated to the great masters of the jazz tradition. moving from the simpler improvisational concepts through the most complex. Every assignment or exercise which is done should reflect the fact that. I cannot overstate the importance of doing many. and of course Hans Gruber.it introduces the concepts in an order which has proven mosr accessible to students. Guest artists have had a terrific impact on the programs I have developed. many. for making our work available to you. and orhenvise share their experiences with the students is an invaluable method of enlivening and enriching the course- work. Finally. Having established artists make guest appearances to speak with.