Practicing jazz piano for a continuous melodic line

Here’s an exercise to help you improvise through chord changes with a more continuous melodic line while playing jazz piano.

As you watch the video below, notice how I keep the flow of 8th notes going, no matter what. This is very important, since we often “rest” at the same places every time we go through a tune’s chord changes. (Studying this in one’s own playing can be eye-opening!) By playing continual melodic lines like this, you’ll force yourself to find ways to connect chords that might be challenging for you right now.

Keep in mind that this exercise is just for practicing, not performing. Do it for a few minutes and then go back to improvising phrases with rests in between, like you normally do. It will help your finger technique and make you a more fluent jazz soloist at the same time.

Here’s the video; enjoy!

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