A Guide To Help You Play Better Jazz Piano
History and overview:
“Chitlins Con Carne” is a tune by guitarist Kenny Burrell which was first recorded for his album Midnight Blue (1963: see link below). It’s primarily played by guitarists, but it sounds great on piano too.
Here are some recommended recordings/videos:
(for international readers who may not have access to these YouTube links, I’ve indicated the original album names wherever possible so you can listen to them on music streaming services, etc.)
Kenny Burrell: Midnight Blue
Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble: The Sky Is Crying
Musical ideas and jazz piano practice tips:
Since both recordings listed above feature guitar-led bands without piano, they are perfect for us pianists to play along with! Don’t try to play in a busy way at first, though, because playing along with a recording is a skill unto itself. Just play chords and hold them out while you stay in tempo and “take in” the rhythms of the recorded instruments. After you become comfortable doing this, you can add some comping rhythms of your own, making sure to always stay on beat with the recording. Then you can add your own riffs, melodic fills, and solo along with the other soloists. Playing along with recordings in this way is a fun and invaluable way to absorb and assimilate the jazz “feel.”
Enjoy the journey, and “let the music flow!”
Further links and resources:
Chitlins Con Carne: Journey Through The Real Book #65
How To Learn Jazz Piano
A podcast to help you learn jazz piano more effectively
Jazz Piano Video Course
This extensive, well-sequenced video course will get you playing jazz standards with a sense of flow and fluency.
Jazz Piano Lessons via Skype
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Learn the 5 Essential Left Hand Techniques with my free ebook: Left Hand Techniques for Jazz Piano
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