Playing jazz ballads a la Frank Sinatra and Billie Holiday

If you listen to the great “torch song” singers, from Billie Holiday to Frank Sinatra, you’ll notice that they sing each phrase a little differently. Even though the overall sound of a song may be “bluesy,” for instance, they usually mix it up by singing some phrases with a blues feeling while other phrases are more lyrical.

We pianists can do this too!

Here’s how you can play jazz piano ballads with alternating bluesy and lyrical phrases. It’s a great way to keep your music expressive and interesting for both yourself and your listeners. Good luck!

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