Wednesday, March 30, 2005

II V I

Afternoon: More Harmonic work today. I spent some time working on VIm, IIm, V7, I progressions in all 12 keys. I was working on some voice-leading ideas within the progression. I felt I was getting a little to pattern-heavy with the exercise and tried doing the same exercise on the piano. That didn’t work very well so I went back to the guitar and tried just IIm V I and look at the progressions as I was running through them. This was a little better. I kept me wrapped up in the exercise and helped make connections with some of the more difficult keys. This was all work leading to what I really was supposed to do today: more voicings for different chord types. I went through the major 7ths the same way I went through the minor 7ths. There were quite a few similarities (duh). That led me to thinking more key based: using the available tensions from the key to provide the available notes for the harmony. This was exciting and I felt it was good solid work to engage in. Especially when playing with a bass player or when I’m dropping down a bass line, I think it will be useful to have some rootless voicings under my fingers. Plus I want to play more key-based because I think it will be helpful in the long run (especially with minor 7 chords). I’m going to continue these past two exercises in the evening.

Evening: I worked more on harmonic ideas this evening. I found a couple new voicings for major & minor 7ths and I found an interesting grip that works for a lot voicings. It’s kinda like a fourth’s grip. I’ll write them out tomorrow or Friday.

I spent the majority of my time working on voicing for ATTYA & improvising. I’m noticing a need to make some music as I’m acquiring all of this new harmonic information. Part of it is being stimulated by new ideas and part of it is in seeking balance to all of my technical exercises.

All The Things You Are is coming along nicely, but I would like to work on it in different keys. I really need to see through this tune. It’s such a fundamental jazz & pop progression that I need to see it from a perspective that I’m not looking at it yet. I’m still not connecting to the key centers as I mover through the piece; all except the G major section in the middle.

I’ve put in a lot of time playing today. That plus the compound results from the past couple weeks has put me in a pretty good musical spot. I might spend some time this weekend building up a new project to work on. I’d like a gig or recording date to give me a little extra focus.

Evening (Part II): I spent time working on memorizing the melody by intervals and transposing it into different keys. I also worked on doing the same with the chord progression. This lead to me recognizing the progression of the changes as I was moving through them, rather than just the note names. It had an interesting effect when I sat down with Band in the Box. It opened up the idea of key-based soloing that I had trouble with before. It opened up a lot of melodic lines because I wasn’t constricted by just the chord tones and tensions. It was a good experience and helpful in attaining a deeper perspective of the tune. I still think I should work on IIm-V’s in all 12 keys a bit more. I’m a little rusty in certain keys. The Charlie Hayden Tune: Waltz for Ruth, might be a next stop.

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