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Every JazzPianoSkills weekly podcast episode introduces aspiring jazz pianists to essential Jazz Piano Skills. Each Podcast episode explores a specific Jazz Piano Skill in depth. Today you will discover, learn, play five II-V-I Melodic Treatments. In this Jazz Piano Lesson you will:
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Welcome to jazz piano skills. I'm Dr. Bob Lawrence. It's time it's time to discover, learn and play. jazz piano. I hope everyone had a wonderful Labor Day. Relaxing, enjoying family. Good laughs good food. And of course, good jazz, family laughs food, jazz. Come on, it doesn't get any better than that. Indeed, I am totally pumped about today's lesson. I am pumped about every lesson, but I get extra pumped extra excited when we have what I like to call a putting it all together lesson, which is exactly what today is. It say, putting it all together lesson. The last three weeks. The last three weeks have been a grind. A ton of grunt work, as I like to say grunt work mentally and physically. And anytime you devote time to the study of artistry with in any discipline, then you are examining that discipline at its highest level. And when you find yourself at the apex of any discipline, you discover that it demands from you relentless, mental and physical energy. This is exactly what we have been doing the past three weeks with our exploration of melodic treatments. We have been standing on the summit of jazz piano plan, the ability to play or orchestrate a melody. To artistically apply a treatment, we took a very methodical and logical approach to our examination of melodic treatments. We started by identifying the melodic treatments used by professional jazz pianist throughout jazz history. And there are five essential melodic treatments. The first treatment, single note, second treatment, unison line, our third treatment, octave plus fifth fourth treatment of locked hands. And the fifth treatment, the Korto or I like to call forth the structures. We even went a step further and associated each melodic treatment with a specific jazz pianist, which then gave us a historical perspective and appreciation of the evolution of melodic treatments. The single note treatment, we associated with bud Powell, unison line treatment, Oscar Peterson octave plus the fifth treatment, red garland locked hands treatment, George sharing, and the chordal or fourth the structures treatment, Herbie Hancock. Once we identified the various melodic treatments needing to be studied, we then determined how best to begin our study. And of course, the best way to begin studying any jazz piano skill is to do so using sound and motion. And that is exactly what we did. We looked at our five melodic treatments by isolating minor dominant in major sound played with fundamental arpeggio motion, the root, third, fifth and seventh of the sound. Again, a very methodical and logical approach. So today, we put it all together. We take our isolated minor dominant and major arpeggio melodic treatments and we formulate The most important progression in all of jazz, the classic and iconic 251 progression, and we take our fundamental arpeggio motion and turn it into melody. Wow. Now do you see why I'm extra pumped about today's lesson, we get to see all of our hard work over the past three weeks come together and be placed within a musical context. Only one word to describe today's jazz piano lesson. Awesome. Before we get started, I want to personally invite everyone who is not currently a jazz piano skills member to join the family. If you're listening to the jazz piano skills podcast through Apple, I Heart Radio, Spotify, Google Pandora, or any of the other number of popular podcast directories, take a second to visit jazz piano skills.com and become a member. As a member, you'll enjoy full access to all of the jazz piano skills, educational resources, the podcast guides, illustrations, lead sheets, play alongs, the interactive courses, online classes, and of course the private community. The Jazz panel skills, educational resources and materials will without a doubt, I promise you, without a doubt, they will profoundly change your understanding of an approach to the study and practicing of jazz piano. I guarantee you simply visit jazz piano skills.com. To learn more about becoming a member, I look forward to helping you discover, learn and play jazz piano. Okay. With that being said, it's time to discover learn and play to five one melodic treatments. So today you're going to discover five to five one melodic treatments. You're going to learn how to construct 251 melodic treatments, and you're going to play 251 melodic treatments used by many of the jazz greats. But Paul, Oscar Peterson, red Garland, George sharing, Herbie Hancock. So regardless of where you are in your jazz journey, a beginner intermediate player, and advanced player or even an experienced professional, you will find this jazz piano skills podcast lesson exploring 251 melodic treatments to be very enlightening and very beneficial. So here's the game plan for today, I am going to present you with five to five one melodic ideas, five melodic lines that are perfect for you to use. When practicing and learning how to apply the five melodic treatments to a melody. I am going to play all five melodies In this lesson, using each of the five melodic treatments. It's so important that you hear the five melodic treatments played in a legitimate musical context 251. Now, each melodic idea is played over a 251 progression that lasts for two measures. The two chord is played on counts one and two of measure one. The five chord is played on counts three and four of measure one. And the one chord is played on all four counts of measure two. So you're basically getting this to five. Okay, so the two is 12341234. That's it set to measure melodic idea. And each melodic idea outlines the chord changes the 251 using chord tones, only know scale tones, no neighboring tones, no enclosures only chord tones. Each melodic idea increases in length, one full beat, right so I'm intentionally creating longer melodic phrases. So melodic idea one is going to end on count one of measure two melodic Idea number two is going to end on count two of measure two, you say so it's getting longer, melodic idea three is going to end on count three, of measure two, and melodic idea number four ends on count four of measure two. And finally, the fifth melodic idea is going to last for the entire two measures. Each melodic idea uses a balance of ascending and D sending motion. Now, these elements that I just outlined, are easy to miss easy to overlook. However, these little in conspicuous elements are very important in the overall strategic practice plan, designed to help you gain a functional command of the melodic treatments. In fact, these four little in conspicuous elements should always be a part of your practice plan moving forward. So that here they are again in a nutshell. Number one, always practice using an established harmonic progression, like 251. Your melodic ideas should always begin with First and foremost, outlining the chord changes using chord tones only. You should have your melodic ideas gradually increase in length, creating longer melodic phrases. And each melodic idea should use a balance of ascending and descending motion. So here are the five melodic ideas for today. And if you are a jazz piano skills member, you have access to the lead sheets, where you can see these five melodic ideas written out using traditional music notation. melodic idea number one. Again, melodic idea number two. Again, melodic I did number three. Again, are you noticing how each melodic idea uses only chord tones. And each melodic idea uses a balance between ascending and descending motion. And each melodic idea is gradually getting longer, longer musical phrases. Okay, let's go on to melodic idea number four. Again, nice. And finally, melodic idea number five, which lasts for the entire two measures. Here we go again. Nice. Okay, so I am going to take each one of those melodic ideas and I am going to play I am going to apply each of the five melodic treatments to each one of those melodic ideas. And again, if you're a jazz piano skills member, I highly recommend that you download the illustrations guide and the lead sheets guide guides so that you have this information this material in front of you as I am demonstrating the melodic treatments played over each of the five melodic ideas. Okay, so here we go. Melody, number one. We're going to play this at a very slow and Very comfortable and very relaxed tempo 75, right, this is not a speed contest. The objective here is to play these, this melody, using all five treatments, I'm really focusing on getting these treatments under my fingers, right? So this is not a speed contest. In other words, keep your tempos very relaxed. So here we go, Melody number one played two times, I'm going to apply the treatment, all five treatments to the melody. I'll repeat each treatment twice, so that you can hear each treatment played two times. Okay, so here we go. Let's bring the ensemble in. Let's check out melody, number one. And our five melodic treatments. Here we go. Wow, Pretty cool, right? It's amazing. same melody, played five, treated five different ways. Right? So this is the artistry of it. This is the orchestration of it. Right? This is why I referred to earlier in the lesson that this is the summit of jazz, piano playing your ability to actually apply treatments to melody, making artistic choices, when playing a melody, to create to establish the effect that you desire. When playing. It's very cool. It's very hip. So now, let's do the exact same thing, right, let's take melody number two, we're gonna take our, our melody number two, which is the there it is, right, we're gonna take that melody, and we're going to apply all five treatments to melody number two. So let's bring the ensemble back in. And let's check this out. Here we go. Wow again it's just always amazing to me how adding various treatments changes the whole sound of the melodic idea. It's amazing. He just reminder to all of you jazz piano skills members. If you ever need help, I am always one click away. Seriously. one click away. Send me a quick voice message using the speakpipe widget that is nestled directly beneath each podcast player on the jazz piano skills website. Send me a voice message and I will send you one back with an answer. It's very cool technology. And if you're listening on I Heart Radio or Spotify, Apple Pandora, or any other popular podcast directory, you can use the link speakpipe.com forward slash jazz piano skills to send me a quick message that link again, speak pipe.com forward slash jazz piano skills. If you're a scaredy cat, as I like to say, and you're afraid to send me a voice message, then you can post your question in the private jazz piano skills forums, or the private jazz piano skills Facebook group and let the jazz piano skills community help you or attend the Thursday evening jazz piano skills masterclass at 8pm. And get your questions answered face to face, right. I provide you with so many ways to get help. So definitely take advantage of the opportunities. As you know, my entire goal is to provide you with the very best jazz piano lessons. The very best jazz piano educational materials, and the very best jazz piano support available anywhere today. Okay, let's take a look at melody number three. We're going to take that melody, and I am going to apply all five melodic treatments. Again, the tempo is very comfortable, right 75 it's not a speed contest. I'm going to play each melodic treatment twice. So you hear it played two times. And I'm going to move right through all five melodic treatments. So let's bring the ensemble in. Let's listen to melody number three. are five melodic treatments. Here we go. Let's check it out. Pretty darn cool. So you're getting the idea here now, right, each melodic phrase is getting, each melodic idea is getting a little longer, right, I'm extending it a four beat each time. And I'm using only chord tones to create my melodic ideas. And I'm consciously aware of a balance between ascending and descending motion. And I'm using these ideas to apply each of our five melodic treatments. It's a very thorough and very methodical approach to getting familiar with and getting a command of these melotti treatments. And at the same time, constructing these melodic ideas, helping me to develop my jazz vocabulary, my improvisational skills, it's a win win all the way around. So now, let's take a look at melodic idea number four. Nice, we're gonna do the exact same thing, right, we're gonna apply our five melodic treatments to this melody. Okay, again, 75 is our tempo. Not fast, nice and relaxed. We want to get these melodic treatments under our fingers, and hear the impact the effect that they have on our musical line on our musical phrase. So here we go. Let's bring the ensemble back in. And let's check out melodic idea number four, with our five melodic treatments. Here we go. Check it out. Very nice, very nice a jazz piano skills members Listen up, be sure to download the illustration guide to get help and guidance for developing your own melodic ideas I mentioned that it's going to help you develop your jazz vocabulary as well and your improvisational skills. You know, these guides will help you do just that. The diagrams are fantastic and will help you begin thinking, thinking through the compositional process for constructing melodies, right. And likewise, the lead sheets that I already mentioned include the five melodies that I'm playing today. But also included are all five melodic treatments for melody, one beautifully, musically notated in all 12 keys, very cool. And the play alongs are also available on all 12 keys. And most definitely should be used when practicing. Not only will the play alongs help you get these five melodic treatments under your fingers. Your internal sense of time and jazz articulation will improve immensely. So again, if you're not a jazz piano skills member, please join, you will find that having access to all the jazz piano educational content plus the personal support is simply invaluable. Visit jazz piano skills and join I look forward to helping you discover, learn and play jazz piano. Okay, here we go with melodic idea number five, our last melodic idea of the day. And this melodic idea last for the entire two measures, right to 512 measures. here's the here's the melodic idea. I play that one more time. It's nice. So just as we have done with the previous four melodic ideas, we're gonna bring the ensemble in. I'm gonna play that melodic idea and I'm gonna apply all five treatments to that melody, right, I'm gonna play each treatment twice, so you get to hear it two times. Okay, so let's bring our ensemble in. And let's check out melody number five, and our five melodic treatments. Here we go. Check it out. So very, very cool. Wow. You know I mentioned earlier that the ability to apply melodic treatments to a melody is reaching the summit, the apex of the jazz piano world. This is a bold statement. And I'm certain that many folks at jazz pianists instinctually will initially refute such a claim. Notice I said instinctually meaning a response with little if any thought a knee jerk reaction in other words, but once some serious thought is given to the goal of identifying the summit of jazz piano playing, then one will come to the same conclusion. to support my claim, I thought I would conclude today today's lesson with my outline of the evolution of the jazz pianist, the artist. After all, if I can identify this summit of jazz piano playing, I should be able to identify the various stages leading to the summit. Agreed, of course. So here we go. Get your paper and your pencil, you're going to want to want to have this written down and posted on your refrigerator as a daily reminder, a daily compass for your jazz piano journey. So here we go. The evolution of the jazz pianist. Step one technique development you must discover learn and play the harmonic structures of music, the foundation, the 60 chords, right 12 notes, five sounds major dominant minor half diminished, diminished 12 times 560. You must discover learn and play the melodic structures, the pillars which are the scales and the arpeggios. Step number two play harmonic structures in both hands, using root position, and inversions. This is improvisation prep. Not voicing preparation, improvisation, preparation. In other words, you must be able to see the sounds of music from all perspectives. Step number three, begin improvising using randomly placed chord tones. This is a process of liquefying harmony, plus the development of time. Right, begin improvising using randomly placed chord tones. In other words, you're just trying to grab what you can under your fingers, the chord tones of each harmonic sound. Step number four, create musical lines using aimed chord tones, no longer random chord tones, aimed chord tones. This is the application of strategic ascending and descending motion. And it's also the continued development of your time, your articulation your field. fact this is what we did today, we created musical lines using aimed chord tones, right chord tones, not scale tones, non scale tones, chord tones. Step number five, expand creation of your musical lives. Now we include the scale tones, and tension tones, which are the non scale tones. Step number six, apply the melodic treatments, chord tones only. Right? Again what we did today, we applied the melodic treatments to our chord tones, and the melodic treatments that we use unison line octaves plus fifth locked hands, and our chordal or 40 structures. And finally, step seven. Apply the melodic treatments to scale tones and to non scale tones. There you have it. Seven Steps, seven steps to heaven. I should write a song like that, but I think it may it may already been done. Anyway, I would drop a mic right now as a drop mic moment. But I am wearing a headset so it would be too difficult to pull off. Plus, this is a podcast and all you would hear all you would hear is a bunch of noise with no visual effects, so not worth it. But seriously, spend time with this outline. thinking through it and developing a practice routine that follows it. In doing so, you will be on the right path. You will be on the most direct path to reaching the jazz piano summit. Well, I hope you have found this jazz piano skills podcast lesson exploring 251 melodic treatments to be incredibly insightful, and of course very beneficial. Don't forget if you are a jazz piano skills member, I will see you online Thursday evening at the jazz piano skills masterclass a pm Central time to discuss this podcast episode lesson in greater detail and to answer any questions that you may have about 251 melodic treatments and of course any questions that you may have regarding the study of jazz in general. Also, as a jazz panel skills member, be sure to use the educational podcast guides that I have mentioned throughout this lesson for this podcast lesson, they're also jazz panel skills courses to maximize your musical growth. Take a look at those as well. Likewise, make sure you are an active participant in the jazz panel skills forums and private Facebook group. Get involved. Make some new jazz piano friends. As always, you can reach me by phone at 972-380-8050 my extension is 211 by email Dr. Lawrence at jazz piano skills.com. That's Dr. Lawrence at jazz Piano skills.com or by speakpipe found on the jazz piano skills website, in the educational podcast guides and also in the jazz panel skills courses as well. Well, that's it for now. And until next week, enjoy the journey. And most of all, have fun as you discover, learn and play jazz piano