John Coltrane

John Coltrane

John William Coltrane spent a career of searching and scaling new heights, with thrilling highs, and some things that leave many listeners puzzled.  Coltrane was born September 23, 1926 in Hamlet, South Carolina. His father passed while John was young, prompting […]

Coleman Hawkins

Coleman Hawkins

When discussing artists at the forefront of their fields and then embracing change, naturally adapting with their own voices names such as Coleman Hawkins immediately come to mind.  Born in 1904 and affectionately nicknamed Hawk or Bean, the young Hawkins […]

Louis Armstrong


Throughout the history of Jazz, perhaps it can be said there is no more influential figure than Louis Armstrong. From the music’s early history he was able to galvanize the African, and European roots creating the form that we most […]

Stanley Turrentine

Stanley Turrentine was one of the big toned tenors in the tradition of Illinois Jacquet and Gene Ammons. His sumptuous sound was perfectly suited to bebop, blues and ballads, and he gained widespread popularity through his recordings for both CTI […]

Gary Burton’s Improv Class

Take a two-hour class, recorded at Loyola University, with vibraphonist extraordinaire and Berklee teacher Gary Burton. You’ll also hear us three Loyola combos and Gary’s thoughtful comments about group playing (which begins about 1:14).

Modern Jazz

Hi everybody! Time to share some music. We had a great class last night with my Modern Jazz Workshop and we have been working on some new tunes so I want to post some thoughts and videos. The first tune […]

What are your favorites?

During the holiday break, Andrea (our teacher) asked us to learn three blues and three rhythm changes tunes. So to you readers out there, what blues and rhythm changes tunes would you think every jazz musician should know? Post your […]

More Daahoud

Here is a link to Clifford Brown’s trumpet solo taken from the Clifford Brown Complete EmArcy recordings. Emily Remler’s guitar improvisation on Daahoud (from the CD “East Meets Wes”)  is available on iTunes and worth the 99 cents, and you […]

Jazz Advice

I just finished reading a persuasive article on the blog Jazz Advice (here) entitled, 6 Reasons You Should Start Composing Today. This blog has dozens of useful articles for the budding jazz musician, from mastering chord tones (here) to using the […]

Solo Entrances

I was browsing through Hal Cook’s How to Improvise (Advance Music, 1991), a great resource for the jazz student, and came across this piece of advice (on p. 18, if you have the book) about starting a solo, which resonated […]

Jazz Standards Wkshp

We spent a portion of the class working on phrasing – trying to leave space at the end of our ideas, listening to what we just played, and whats happening around us in the rhythm section, and then start a […]

Practicing Improvisation

Bob Anram, the tenorist, has some thought-provoking ideas about improvisation in three essays (called “Letters”) that are posted on the Sax On The Web website (here). In the second essay/letter, entitled Neutral Phrasing, he describes how he has solved the […]

Playing for Real

Reading Mark’s post prompts me to write that the bebop workshop is doing something similar: Andrea has been working with us to play together—to interact musically with the other musicians, to think about what we can do to support the […]

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