Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Playing the Blues

I've always taken it for granted that my students would learn the blues scales, but what I'm learning is that they don't really KNOW them. Actually, they don't really KNOW most of their scales in general. They can figure them out, but they can't move up and down and around and through them with very much ease. I've been teaching my students out of Greenblatt's book on the blues http://www.shermusic.com/new/1883217385.shtml and he makes it so easy to blow over the blues, using the major and minor blues scales. If only the students could master these scales, they could really start to blow! The other issue is that, while they may know a one octave scale, knowing these scales over the entire range of your horn is quite another thing, especially if they're not starting on the root. If you're looking for a great beginning to intermediate improv. book, this is great... it comes with a couple play a long CDs and is available in Eb, Bb and C versions. I highly reccomend it.

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