This JazzPianoSkills Podcast Episode explores a Key of Eb Major Melodic Workout (Eb Major Modes, Inverted Melodic Arpeggios, and Rhythmic Melodic Lines).
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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 a Key of Eb Major Melodic Workout. In this Jazz Piano Lesson you will:
A Key of Eb Major Melodic Workout
How to "think" within the Key of Eb Major, Melodically
The Modes of the Key of Eb Major plus Inverted Melodic Arpeggios from various entry points (Root, 3rd, 5th, 7th).
You are going to play Melodic lines using various Whole Note, Half Note, Quarter, and 8th Note Rhythms played over the II-V-I Progression.
For maximum musical growth, be sure to use the Jazz Piano Podcast Packets for this Jazz Piano Lesson. All three Podcast Packets are designed to help you gain insight and command of a specific Jazz Piano Skill. The Podcast Packets are invaluable educational tools to have at your fingertips while doing a Key of Eb Major Melodic Workout.
(ensemble assistance and practice tips)
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Dr. Bob Lawrence 0:32
Welcome to jazz piano skills. I'm Dr. Bob Lawrence. It's time to discover, learn and play jazz piano. Last week we tackled the key of E flat major, focusing on harmonic development this week, and an extensive workout in the key of E flat major melodically. So today you're going to discover the key of E flat major melodic workout, you're going to learn how to think within the key of E flat major melodically and you're going to play the modes of the key of E flat major using ascending and descending scale and arpeggio motion launching from various entry points the route to third, fifth seventh, and you are going to play melodic lines using various home note half note quarter an eighth note rhythms played over the 251 progression. So as I always like to say regardless of where you are in your jazz journey, a beginner, intermediate player an advanced player even if you are an experienced, and seasoned professional, you will find this jazz panel skills podcast lesson exploring a key of E flat major melodic workout to be very beneficial. I want to take a moment as I do at the beginning of every jazz panel skills podcast episode to welcome all of you first-time listeners. And if you are indeed new to jazz piano skills a first-time listener to the jazz panel skills podcast I want to personally invite you to become a jazz piano skills member. All you have to do is visit jazz panel skills.com To learn more about all of the jazz educational resources, materials, and services that are available for you to use. For example, as a jazz piano skills member, you have access to all of the educational podcast packets, the illustrations, the lead sheets, the play alongs that I develop and make available for every weekly podcast episode. These are invaluable educational tools do you want in your hands as you listen to this podcast episode and you certainly want to have sitting on your piano as you are practicing the jazz piano skills that we are about to explore. As a jazz piano skills member, you also have access to the sequential jazz piano curriculum which is loaded with comprehensive courses using a sequential format of course self-paced format, educational talks, interactive media, video demonstrations, play alongs, and much more. Also, as a jazz panel skills member you have a reserved seat in the online weekly masterclasses, which are in essence a one-hour online lesson with me each and every week. You also as a jazz panel skills member have access to the online interactive Fakebook, which grants you access to jazz standards from the Great American Songbook enjoy the chord changes lead sheets enjoy harmonic function lead sheets, there are chord scale relationships, play along files, historical insights, inspiration, inspirational recordings, and much more. It's an ever-growing library and an ever-growing collection of tunes that you should absolutely study and learn. You also as a jazz panel skills member have access to the private jazz piano community, which hosts a variety of engaging forums podcast specific forums, course-specific forums, and of course just general jazz piano forums as well. And last but certainly not least, as the jazz panel skills member you have unlimited private, personal and professional educational support whenever and as often as you need it. Again, visit jazz panel skills.com To learn more about all of the educational opportunities that await you and how to easily activate your membership. Now there are several membership plans to choose from. And I am quite certain there is one that will be perfect for you. If after looking everything over you you have additional questions please let me know. Reach out I'm always happy to spend some time with you answer any questions that you may have, and help you in any way that I can. Okay, let's discover, learn and play jazz piano. Let's get after this key of E flat major melodic workout. In January, we tackled
a key of C major harmonic workout followed by a key of C major melodic workout. In February, we jumped into a key of F major harmonic workout, followed by a key of F major melodic workout. In March, we explored a key of B flat major harmonic workout, again, followed by a key of B flat major melodic workout. This month, the month of April, we have continued our workout series with a key of E flat major harmonic workout last week, which of course is going to be followed up with a key of E flat major melodic work. Now I have mentioned on several different occasions that harmony and melody without rhythm remained simply static or stationary, right static sounds. And in fact, one could possibly go as far as calling it noise. Bottom line, melody and harmony without rhythm are not very musical. And this is precisely why every harmonic and melodic workout includes various rhythmic skills. Again, the idea is that rhythm must be applied to harmony and melody if you truly want to develop your jazz piano skills. Now, those of you who have been faithfully doing the various harmonic and melodic workouts since the start of the new year, you know that we started on a mission with the key of C major, and we are making our way around the entire circle of fifths counterclockwise, with the goal of by year's end, having successfully spent quality time with all 12 keys. Additionally, as we move around the circle of fifths, throughout the year, we will be gradually increasing the intensity and complexity of our rhythmic application to harmony, and melody. Now, I've stated before, that based on years of teaching experience, it is the rhythmic dimension of music that is the main stumbling block for most students. In fact, when it comes to playing rhythm, most students find themselves guessing how rhythms are supposed to be played. And the truth of the matter is that if you are guessing at rhythm, your internal sense of time is off. And if your internal time is off, your plane is like a house of cards waiting to collapse. It's just a matter of time. See what I did there, right? That was pretty clever. It's just a matter of time. Now that would make a great jazz t-shirt, it's just a matter of time. So, the reality is this, the development of time begins with the understanding and proper execution of rhythms. Let me say that I want to say that again. The reality is this. The development of time begins with the understanding and proper execution of rhythm. This is why you have to make a personal commitment to practicing rhythm. You have to practice rhythm harmonically as we do in our harmonic workouts. And you have to practice rhythm melodically as we do in our melodic workouts. Ironically, rhythm is the most important aspect of music and is discussed and practiced the least. And this is precisely why most people have difficulty becoming an accomplished jazz musician. You I cannot begin to tell you how many students I have had over the years who come to me with a solid melodic and harmonic technique. They have a strong understanding of voicing, chord scale relationships, improvisational approaches,
but yet they struggled to play jazz. Why? The answer is rhythm, they are rhythmically deficient and therefore their time is practically nonexistent. So my goal with these strategic harmonic and melodic workouts is to help you not only develop sufficient harmonic and melodic jazz piano skills but to make sure that you gain a proficient understanding of rhythm and as a result, develop a solid internal sense of time. So last week with our key of E flat harmonic workout, I introduced rhythms using a single eighth note on the backside of the beat or, as you will hear, referred to frequently as the upbeat. Of course, these single eighth notes per mingled with 8th note pairs as well as whole half and quarter note values. Today, we follow the same game plan the application of rhythmic ideas using a single eighth note, single eighth notes, and eighth note pairs, whole half quarter values as well. Right all to create diatonic melodies 100% diatonic melodies. But before we do, I want to stress the importance of doing the entire key of E flat major melodic workout and not just jumping to the last lead sheet in your podcast packet skill 25. to attack the melodic rhythms. In other words, you have to have a functional command of your scales and arpeggios in the key of E flat, right you have to have a functional command of the data. Before you can begin applying the data before you can begin applying rhythm to the data right. As I like to say you have to bake a cake before you decorate the cake. So don't jump to scale 25 to begin decorating the scales and arpeggios with rhythm before you have baked your scales and arpeggios long enough by practicing the first 24 skills, the first 24 lead sheets so that you can actually play them. So you will find in your lead sheets podcast packet as you did with our last three melodic workouts, the key of C F, and B flat, you will find all 24 skills laid out for you. So let's just do a quick review again. Skills one through four modes ascending in root position plus first, second and third inversion. If you look at skills five through eight in your packet, you'll see the modes descending root position first, second, and third inversion skills nine through 12 arpeggios ascending and root position plus all three inversions skills 13 through 16 arpeggios descending, again in root position, and first second and third inversion. Now skill 17 In your packet to five one ascending scale motion, again using the root third, fifth seventh as entry points on the two-chord scale 18 to five one descending scale motion, root third, fifth seventh entry on the two chord scale 19 to find one ascending arpeggio motion, scale 20 251 descending arpeggio motion scale 21 we expand that harmonic movement 36251 ascending scale motion with the root third fifth seventh entry on the three-chord scale 22 Again 36251 descending scale motion, root third, fifth seventh entry on the three-chord.
Then scales 23, and 24. Again are 36251 ascending and descending arpeggio motion using various entry points again from the three-chord of the root, the third, the fifth, and the seventh. So after you have thoroughly completed your workout Are these 24 skills then you can turn your attention to play in scale 25 which challenges you with 12 melodic lines using rhythm, which uses fundamental single eighth notes, eighth note pairs whole half, and quarter note values. Wow, what a workout. So the educational agenda for today is as follows. Number one, we're going to explore the key of E flat major melodically. Number two, we're going to play 12 melodic ideas using ascending and descending, scale, and arpeggio motion. Number three, all melodic ideas will be applied to the 251 progression in the key of E flat major, F minor seven to B flat dominant seven to E flat major seven. And number four, all melodic lines will be played using a traditional swing groove that transitions through three different tempos, tempo of 100,120, and 140. Now I'm going to when I play these exercises, I'm going to actually work and do some harmonic voicing work as well. And I'll explain that here as well once we get started. And number five, all swing grooves will be played using a single note right-hand melodic treatment. Okay, so before we go any further if you are a jazz piano skills member, I want you to take a few minutes right now to hit the pause button. And I want you to access download and print your podcast packets, your illustrations, and your lead sheets. You have access to all of the podcast packets. And again, you should be using them when listening to this podcast episode. And of course, you should be using them when you are practicing when you're doing the E flat major melodic workout. And if you're listening to this podcast on any other popular podcast directories such as Apple or Google, Amazon, Spotify, iHeartRadio, Pandora, and so on, then be sure to go directly to the jazz panel skills podcast, website, jazz piano skills podcast.com. To download your podcast packets, you will find the active download links within the show notes. And one final but very important note that I mentioned every week, that if you are in some way thinking that the key of E flat major melodic workout and the various scales that we're about to discover, learn and play. If you feel that these skills aren't going to be in some way over your head, then I would say to you that's okay. Sit back, relax, continue to listen, and continue to grow your jazz piano skills intellectually by listening to this podcast episode. Again all skills all scales or overheads when first introduced. And that is precisely why the very first and most essential step that we take is listening. Right listening will improve our musicianship immensely. So do not shy away from conversations discussing foreign topics or using unfamiliar terms. Right. Stepping outside of our musical comfort zone spawns always does it spawns significant musical growth. Okay, so listen to this podcast listen now. To discover and learn the play will come in time. Okay, so grab exercise 25 or skill 25. In your lead sheets packet,
you will see 12 melodic lines labeled A through L laid out for you. I'm going to play through each one of these for you right now. Model these melodic lines at three different temples as I mentioned earlier at 101 20 and 140. I'm also going to incorporate some harmonic workout as well. So I'm going to I'm going to focus on my two-handed voicings. So the first time through the 251 you're going to hear me play just two-handed voicings through 251 The voicings that we explored last week in our harmonic workout. Second time you'll hear me play them all Bottom line over that 251 I will do that twice, right? The chords and the melody twice at 100. I'm going to do it twice at 120 and twice again at 140. Okay, so two times at each tempo. You'll get it as soon as I play through it. So let's look at the letter A. You'll see we have some single eighth notes occurring and measure one measure two to pay careful attention to all right, so let's bring the ensemble and let's listen to rhythmic melodic line letter A and see what we think here we go.
Pretty cool right. So now you got the idea. I'm going to do my voicings followed by the melodic line voicings followed by the melodic line, go to the new tempo, do the same format, then to the new tempo again, same format 101 2140. All right, this is just a way to practice I'm trying to kind of be efficient here with my practicing do some harmonic work at the exact same time I'm doing some melodic work right? Plus that harmonic work gives me a chance to kind of assess what I just played melodically as well and make any adjustments for the next time through. So now let's look at letter B. Okay, letter B. So again, primarily eighth-note movement and measure one and two. We have a single eighth note on and of one and measure three and also in the on the end of four. So pay attention to those two areas as well. So let's bring the ensemble and let's check it out and see what we think here we go.
Nice. Now, I want to remind you to feel free to practice these rhythms first. Maybe by just clapping them right now, you do not even have to play them. Just clap them. Turn on a metronome clap along with the metronome, or put the play along on and practice with the play along by just clapping the rhythm. internalize the rhythm first, then apply the rhythm and play it melodically. So with that being said, let's take a look at letter C. Now what's interesting here with the melodic line on letter C is you don't come in until the handle for on count on measure one, right that can be a little tricky. You have to track time all the way through count four, and you come in on the end of four or the upbeat right the backside of count four, followed by arpeggiated motion and measure two. Then we have again and measure three, an eighth note on the end of one look at measure 4/8 note on the end of one and on the end of two. So let's bring the ensemble in let's take a listen to this rhythmic melodic line played at 101 2140 working on two-handed voicings and then playing the melodic idea. So here we go, let's check it out.
I love it. Okay, so by now you understand you have an idea of how we're going to play through all the rhythmic and melodic ideas today. So with the letter D, we have in measure one would come in on the end of one checkout measure to a lot of off beats happening here on the end of to eighth note on the end of to eighth note on the and of 3/8 note on the end of four. We have some tied values in there as well. Tricky. Again, clap through the rhythm first before you try playing it. So let's bring the ensemble in and let's take a listen to letter D. Here we go.
Awesome. I love it. Wonderful. It's interesting, right? As we change the tempo, the tempo on these rhythmic ideas, these melodic lines, how it, how the line itself just sounds different at different temples. Okay? Fantastic. That's why I'm always encouraging you to when practicing explore various temples, explore various grooves, right. And again, you feel free to play these lines at much slower temples 60 7080 And of course, play them at faster temples 161 8200. Right, explore different temples, different groups. Now let's look at letter E. We have a whole whole lot of single eighth notes on the backside of a whole lot of beats. Look at measure one, we have an eighth note on the end of 2/8 note on the end of three, and a four. Look at measure two and one and of two and of three, right no guessing here again, you guess I guarantee the odds are not in your favor. So let's bring the ensemble and let's check it out again clap along clap through the rhythms first before try trying to play them yourselves. So here we go let's let's listen to the letter E check it out.
right on the letter F halfway home. This is pattern rhythmic pattern melodic idea number six out of 12. And again, we have a single eighth note on the end of one and measure one single eighth note on the end of one and measure two single eighth note on the end of one and measure three. Right, so you'll notice that some of the same melodic motifs are being repeated here to help develop nice melodic ideas. So let's bring the ensemble and let's jump in. Let's check it out and see what we think. Here we go.
Very nice now, letter G, measure one and two, again repeating the same melodic motif and measure one and measure two, check out count three and both of those measures eighth note on the backside of count three on the upbeat of count three and measure one and on the upbeat of count three and measure two, then eighth note movement and measure three and measure four. So let's bring the ensemble right back in let's check it out and see what we think here we go.
All right on to letter H. And just FYI, H i, j and k kind of ratchet it up a little bit. The eighth note the use of the single eighth note on the backside of the beats gets a little bit more intense. Right away. You'll notice that in letter H here, you have again in measures one and two, you're coming in on the end or the backside of count one. You do the same thing and measure three but check out measure 4/8 notes on the end of one and a two and on the end of three. So like I said we're gonna ratchet it up a little bit here, get a little more intense with these, the use of our single eighth note on the backside of the various beats. So here we go. Let's bring the ensemble and let's check it out. See what we think.
Nice and again, right? If you guess, if you're guessing that rhythms, it's going to make it very difficult, I would encourage you also, to work out the mathematics of it right. A lot of students like to write in the counting above each of the notes as they're working out. Like I like I like to say the mathematics of it. Nothing wrong with that as well, to think through these melodic ideas to think through these rhythms before you even begin to clap them, or begin to play them. Always preparation on the front end always results in greater success on the back end when you actually begin to play them. So now let's look at letter I. Wow, a lot going on here. Look at measure one, everything is on the backside of the beat. On measure on count one count to count three and count four. Look at measure three, same thing count one count to count three count for the eighth note is appearing on the backside of each one of those beats. You'll notice that this melodic motif and count measure one and two, same kind of melodic motif idea and measures three and four just up up up a step. So let's bring the ensemble in let's check it out. Let's have a little fun and see what we think here we go.
All righty, now on to letter J. And now I'm going to introduce some melodic ideas here with J and K. That uses primarily the interval of fourth as opposed to traditional scale and arpeggio motion using a third. So our intervals change, but what doesn't change is that we have to deal with single eighth notes on the on the end of one and measure one. Likewise in measure two and one, and again in measure three on count one, right on the backside of count one and measures one, two, and three. They in Plus, we're dealing with these angular melodic ideas using these intervals of a fourth. So this is a new little twist. So this will be interesting. Let's see what this sounds like. Here we go.
I love it right? Very contemporary, very nice use of chordal shapes that actually mirror what we do harmonically with our chord shapes in our left-hand shells that we address that we explored in last week's harmonic workout. So we're going to continue with that, that theme with letter K, we're going to stick with our fourth, the intervals are fourth the motifs and look what's happening in measure one and measure two in moto K, we have an eighth note, single eighth note on the backside of count one and the backside of count three. In both measures one and measure to measure three we have an eighth single eighth note on the backside of count one. And again, we're using primarily an interval of a fourth through this entire line. However, in measure three we do come out of this, this fourth the pattern with a traditional arpeggio sound so you can see the mixing and matching of these chordal shapes and traditional shapes built on thirds it's a very good sound. So let's bring the ensemble and let's check it out and see what we think here we go.
All right, we are down to our last melodic line using various rhythmic values, focusing primarily on the single eighth note on the backside of a beat. And we returned to kind of a traditional idea with using our lines being built on the interval of a third and measures one Two, same motif, kind of same motif, repeated measures one and two. And then we have the single eighth note again coming in and account one of measure three, but we'll check out measure four, you have single eighth notes on the backside of counts one, two, and three. So nice traditional line with some nice syncopation in there. And again, one thing I want to mention before we wrap it up with the examples here today, all of these melodic lines, every single one of them 100% diatonic motion, they sound so good. And yet we're not using any notes outside of the key of E flat, no half step approach mints, no enclosures, no notes outside of the harmony, everything sticking to the E flat major scale 100% So with that being said let's bring the ensemble in and let's listen to letter L here we go.
Well, it never fails, we always unpack a ton and I mean a ton of information in each and every podcast episode each and every week and today was certainly no exception. As we explored a key of E flat major melodic workout, I cannot stress to you enough how important it is that you spend time practicing rhythm you spend time becoming familiar with the diatonic melodic shapes, scales, and arpeggios of a key having a command of a scale motion. Within the framework of a key the modes is a huge step toward developing mature improvisational skills. And likewise having a command of ascending and descending arpeggio motion, outlining harmonic shapes of the key which are also frequently used and improvisation is equally important. So being able to easily apply ascending descending scale and arpeggio shapes of a key to common progressions like we did today, the 251 progression is a big-time jazz piano skill that must be strategically studied and practiced. That is if you're serious about becoming an accomplished jazz pianist. Now, combine last week's key of E flat major harmonic workout with this week's key of E flat major melodic workout. And you have an incredible one-two punch that will have you well on your way to mastering the key of E flat major. And not only that, it will continue to solidify a practice as I like to say a practice blueprint that you can replicate in other keys, which is exactly what we're doing throughout this entire year. The only thing really changing is our rhythmic application. Right? I said it last week I want us to stress it again today, if you hang in there with me this year, all the way through the year, you're going to experience a ton of jazz piano growth as we move through all 12 keys. I promise you, you will love where you are musically a year from now, absolutely certain of it. Once again, I want to encourage you to use the podcast packets that you have in your hands, the illustrations, use those illustrations and those worksheets. Use the lead sheets that we went through today. When you're studying these melodic lines. When you're studying these modes, the scales arpeggio motion, right use the play alongs right to help all of them illustrations, lead sheets to play launch the guide. You've heard me say over and over again your conceptual understanding determines your physical development. So the time that you invest in studying and mapping out the melodic exercises is time very well spent. And as always, I want you to be patient developing mature, professional jazz piano skills take time. So begin structuring your practicing after the plain demonstrations that I modeled for you today. And you will begin to see you'll begin to feel you'll begin to hear your musical progress. Well, I hope you have found this jazz panel skills podcasts lesson exploring the key of E flat major melodic workout to be insightful, and of course, I hope you have found it to be very beneficial. Don't forget if you're a jazz panel skills member I will see you online Thursday evening at the jazz piano skills masterclass 8 pm, central time to discuss this podcast episode lesson exploring the key of E flat major melodic workout in greater detail and to answer any questions that you may have about the study of jazz in general. And likewise, be sure to use the educational podcast packets. Be sure to use the jazz piano skills courses. Be sure to become an active participant in the jazz piano skills community. All right, these are all educational tools and services that are there to help you along your journey to becoming an accomplished jazz pianist. And as always, you can reach me by phone here at the Dallas School of Music 972-380-8050 My email address is Dr. Lawrence firstname.lastname@example.org where you can send me a SpeakPipe which is a handy little widget found throughout the entire jazz piano skills website. Well, there is my cue. That's it for now. And until next week, enjoy your key of E flat major melodic work. And most of all, have fun as you discover, learn and play jazz Piano