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 […]

Blog Post

Mark Sherman Hard Bop Combo- New York Jazz Workshop 9/24/12 Yesterday night at the Hard Bop combo we played a tune by Pat metheny. It might be hard to associate Pat with “Hard Bop, but this tune entitled Elucidations is […]


The title of the blog post, “John Coltrane’s improvised line in Milestones as a Model for Incorporating Sequential Patterns in Jazz Improvisation” says it all. Also, take a look at Incorporating the Sound of Nicolas Slonimsky’s Pattern no. 626 in […]

Arranging tips.

Hi! Yesterday in class we were improvising on a couple of new tunes like Bouncing with Bud and Desafinado and we discussed about the nice it would be to write some arrangement for the band, or even just some harmonizations […]

The importance of listening… Milestones!

Hi everybody! Last night we had Amy, a great flute player sitting in our Bebop Workshop class. Everybody immediately realized the importance of listening to the other musicians while playing and adjust the dynamics to everyone else is in the […]