Bringing variety to your hard bop jazz piano playing

Hey Improvisers,

Playing bebop and hard bop can be fun, but do you ever feel like you’re just playing the same stuff over and over again? If so, you’re not alone. But don’t worry, there are specific things you can do to remedy this and bring some variety to your playing.

One of the best ways you can do this is to try some different overall approaches to playing jazz piano, instead of always playing the typical “left-hand comping/right hand single-note soloing” approach.

I’ve made a video to give you some ideas for expanding your pianistic concept in this way, using Gigi Gryce’s tune “Minority” as an example. You’ll see how using techniques such as melodic sequences, rhythm section “hits,” diminished neighbor shorts, arpeggios, pedal tones, syncopated stride, 2-part counterpoint, walking bass, left-hand countermelodies, and George Shearing-style block chords can invigorate your playing in fresh, new ways.

Here’s the video:

Minority: Journey Through The Real Book #233

Enjoy, and good luck with your jazz piano playing!


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