When The Pat Metheny Group first appeared on the musical scene, in the 1970s, a lot of people considered them to be kind of “jazz lite.” Not “real” jazz. A little watered down. They were wrong.
There’s so much that we jazz pianists can do on a song like “April Joy” in terms of improvisation. We can use the blues scale, modes, pentatonics, and a whole lots of pianistic textures including block chords, single note lines, and various rhythmic patterns. Yes, it’s real jazz.
Watch me demonstrate the tune’s flexibility on this video and then open your copy of the Real Book and try them for yourself. Have fun!
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