This JazzPianoSkills Podcast Episode explores Red Garland's solo on Cole Porter's "What Is This Thing Called Love". Discover how Red Garland uses the fully-altered dominant sound (Super-Locrian Mode) when improvising. A jazz piano lesson taught by professional jazz pianist and educator Dr. Bob Lawrence.
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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 Red Garland's solo on Cole Porter's What Is This Thing Called Love. In this Jazz Piano Lesson you will:
Red Garland's solo on Cole Porter's What Is This Thing Called Love
How Red Garland uses the Altered Dominant Sound when soloing on What Is This Thing Called Love
Altered Dominant Exercises to begin developing jazz vocabulary for What Is This Thing Called Love
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Welcome to jazz piano skills. I'm Dr. Bob Lawrence. It's time to discover, learn and play jazz piano. I hope everyone had a fabulous Thanksgiving holiday, sharing it with family and friends and of course good food. As always. As always, I weighed too much food, but time with my family passed way too quickly as well. Every year the Lauren's family packs our bags and we head to the Ozark Mountains in Missouri. We stay at a beautiful Lodge and private cabin overlooking Table Rock, like the whole setup is simply breathtaking. And without doubt makes for the perfect getaway to relax and enjoy each other's company. My favorite week of the year by far and I'm already counting the days until we head back again next year. But now it's it's back to business. And today is transcription Tuesday, and it's a good one. Well, they're all good ones, right? But this is, this is a kind of this is like a part two, if you will have of a red garland bundle. Last month we dissected red garland solo on the classic Gershwin standard, a foggy day in London town from the iconic jazz album garlin have read today. Today we are going to explore nother Great American Songbook standard from that amazing album. This time we're gonna look at Cole Porter's What is this thing called? Love? See, it's a red gartland bundle. foggy day in London town last month. What is this thing called love this month? Hard to beat it right? Both solos by the great red garland and both solos packed with a ton and I mean a ton of great jazz language. Needless to say, I love transcription Tuesday, almost almost as much as my getaway this past week, but almost almost I'll just leave it at that. But every Tuesday we take the time to discover, learn and play some aspect of jazz piano, whether it's theory tunes, technique, transcriptions, regardless of which aspect of playing jazz piano we, we are exploring that we want to discover, learn and play. It is always a solid educational episode, every Tuesday, every week, of every month, throughout the entire year. Good stuff indeed. We have an incredible amount of great information to unpack today. So it's gonna be a busy podcast episode. But before we dig in, and spend time with the great red Garland, and what is this thing called love. I want to take a second as I do every week to personally invite all new first time listeners and all old time listeners as well. To join jazz panel skills to become an active member. All you have to do is go to jazz piano skills.com click on the join link, pick a plan and join. It's that easy. And once you are an official member you will have full access to all of the educational content, all of the resources at jazz piano skills. This includes the educational podcast guides, the illustrations, the lead sheets, the play logs. It also includes the interactive courses which make up a self paced sequential jazz piano curriculum. It also includes the weekly masterclass, the one hour weekly masterclass that I host online every week, every Thursday evening 8pm Central time. It also includes access to the private jazz panel skills community to the skill specific forums. Plus, it includes personal and professional support whenever you need it, and as often as you need it. More about each of these amazing benefits throughout today's episode. Bye If you are indeed serious about developing the jazz piano skills needed for you to become an accomplished jazz pianist, then you should absolutely become a jazz piano skills member. And begin taking advantage of all of the educational content, materials, resources, and professional support. There are several membership plans to choose from. So you can definitely find one that is going to be a good fit for you. You can become a member for a month, if you just simply want to try it out, there's a monthly membership plan. There's also a quarterly membership plan. And of course, there's an annual membership plan. There is also by the way, a lifetime membership plan, which is 50% off with a black friday deal that's going on right now. So head the jazz panel skills.com. And check that out all of the plans, regardless of which one you choose and which one is right for you, grants you full access to all of the educational content and materials, the resources and the professional support. Again, check it all out at jazz piano skills.com. If you have any questions, let me know I am happy to speak with you and help you determine which jazz panel skills membership plan is best for you. All right. on with the show. It's time to discover, learn and play red garland solo on what is this thing called love? Today, you are going to discover red garland solo on what is this thing called love. You're going to learn how red garlin loves to use the altered dominant sound. And you're going to play various red garland dominant lines and altered dominant exercises to begin developing your jazz vocabulary. So regardless of where you are in your jazz journey, a beginner intermediate player, advanced player or even if you are an experienced professional, you will find this jazz panel skills podcast lesson exploring red Garland's solo on what is this thing called love from the classic jazz album, a garland of read to be very beneficial. Okay, before we get started all jazz piano skills Members, please take a second pause this episode right now take a few minutes and print the podcast got the illustrations and the lead sheets. It's always important to have these in front of you as we go through the lesson especially when we are studying a transcription. As the old saying goes, a picture is worth 1000 words. And the illustrations the lead sheets will indeed illuminate various aspects of essential jazz piano skills that are often just simply difficult to describe or explain by using only words. So let's take a second and print those out. Okay, now that you have the podcast guides in front of you, I want to walk you through the illustrations. First, the first page of the illustrations gives you a nice historical perspective, an overview of the album, a garland of read information from the recording date the producer, the studio to musicians tunes, and so on this album, this album should be part of every jazz musicians collection, especially jazz pianist. It's always nice to have an historical understanding and appreciation of influential jazz recordings such as a garland of red. So the very first illustration kind of puts it all in perspective for you the historical aspect and significance of this recording. The second illustration that you have in front of you gives you a breakdown of chord scale tones versus the non chord scale tones of red Garland's solo, the stats, definitely look at those stats. They definitely show us the overwhelming presence of chord scale tones, and how important it is for all of us for you for me to have a command of scales and arpeggios. Those statistics always blow me away. The third illustration that you have in your hands, highlights all of the altered scale tones used by red garland when playing the dominant sounds, the dominant chords. This is actually going to be what we primarily focus on today when we are dissecting his solo. And the fourth illustration that you have spotlights for specific c dominant ideas played by red garlin, during his solo, we're going to take these ideas, these four ideas, analyze them, play them, and then focus on some specific exercises to help help us acquire the skills needed to begin developing our own jazz language using a page from the red garlon playbook, right, the red garland approach. Okay, so those are the illustrations that you have. Now, let's take a close look at the lead sheets. The first lead sheet that you have in your hands is the complete transcription of red Garland's solo. So before we go any further, with transcription in hand, I want you to follow along as we listen to red garlin play Cole Porter's, what is this thing called love? So we're going to listen to him play the head, then we're going to listen to his song. This is gonna be great. So here we go. Let's check this out. I have only one word. Wow. How cool is this recording? It's so awesome to have a transcription in your hand. Right? And the follow along. Follow along as you listen. Again, right? It's It's It's a picture's worth 1000 words, no doubt. So having the transcription in your hand as you listen to the solo, and how he phrases and articulation how he articulates the lines that he's playing. It's invaluable, just simply invaluable. Okay, the second lead sheet I want to draw your attention to is an actual lead sheet of the tune. I put together the chord changes and the melody for you. So as you can see, I have purposely kept the melody notation very simple. You can of course as you learn the tune, experiment with adding various rhythmic interpretations to the melody to create your own treatment of the tune. As always, as always, though, learn the basic melody first. Then began experimenting with your own rhythmic ideas but learn the melody first. The third lead sheet that you have in your hands is simply the form of the tune with the chord changes notated that's it no melody. Simply form and courts Oh And I like using this type of lead sheet. When exploring various ways to approach voicings, whether it's whether it be left hand shell voicings or two handed structures, either way, working off a lead sheet like this is that is so valuable, right. So you just simply have the chord changes there and the form. Now the fourth lead sheet is form and function only. And listen to me very, very carefully here. This is the lead sheet you want to use, when you truly want to learn a to when you truly want to learn the harmonic movement of a tone, when you really want to know a tone so well, that you can play it in any key when you really want to develop your ears to hear harmonic movement. Or you get my point here. As you can see, this lead sheet uses traditional Roman numeral notation to establish harmonic relationships, like 251, no harmonic relationships, nothing for the IRS to do. I'm gonna say that, again, no harmonic relationships, nothing for the IRS to do or retain. It amazes me how few students practice this way. And it amazes me even further, of how few jazz teachers actually teach this way. The next four lead sheets that you have in your packet. The next four lead sheets outline for specific exercises that we will be using today as we discover, learn and play the altered dominant sounds used by red garlin in what is this thing called love and his solo over that tune? No doubt today is going to be fun, as we discover, learn and play jazz piano with the jazz great red garlin. And no doubt, you will have more than likely many questions as we take apart red Garland's solo on what is this thing called love. And that is precisely why I am committed to providing all jazz piano skills members immediate and personal, unlimited support. If you are listening to this podcast through the jazz piano skills website, you can use the extremely convenient speakpipe widget pet is nestled directly beneath the podcast player to send me a voice message. It's that easy. It's It's amazingly simple. One click and the two of us are interacting with each other. Send me a voice message with your questions and I will send you a voice message back with the answers. Very cool technology. If you're listening on I Heart Radio, Spotify, Apple Pandora emigrant amazon music or any of the other popular podcast directories out there, you can use the link speakpipe.com forward slash jazz piano skills to send me a quick message. As I say every week if you happen to be a scaredy cat, and I know there's some scaredy cats out there. But if you're a scaredy cat and afraid to send me a voice message, then you can post your question in the private jazz panel skills forum. And let the let the incredible community help you and answer questions for you. Or you can literally join join us all on Thursday evening. With the jazz panel skills masterclass. I host this masterclass every Thursday 8pm Central time using the zoom platform which I know you are familiar with. So every Thursday 8pm Central Time, access the zoom link at jazz piano skills.com and join the masterclass to get your questions answered face to face. I provide all jazz piano skills members with so many ways to get help. So definitely take advantage of the opportunities. As you know my entire goal with jazz piano skills is to provide you with the very best jazz piano lessons. The very best jazz piano educational materials The very best jazz piano support that's available anywhere today. Okay, so let's get started, grab your illustrations. And within your illustrations, you'll see the transcription where I have literally highlighted, I have put a red, or an orange box around for C dominant ideas that red garland plays during his soul on what is this thing called love. Okay, and so the very first thing we're going to do is we're going to take a look at each one of these four ideas. Now, each one of these c dominant chords are part of a 251 progression, a minor 251. So you'll see in front of it, the G half the many seven, and you'll see on the backside of it, the F minor chord, so we have a classic minor 251. And on that C dominant red garland is literally he starts on the seventh of the chord up to the flat nine, back that seven mini raises that seven and a half step to the natural bebop scale up to the route down to the fifth. Back to the flat seven. And the a flat. Nice line. So sounds like this. Nice. More time. Okay, so what I want to do, we have an altered dominant sound here, let's put this into a musical context. So let's bring the ensemble and we're going to highlight or isolate that to five, one, that minor 251 g half diminished chord, the C seven going to F minor, you're going to notice as I play I do nothing, nothing on the G half diminished. I do nothing on the F minor. I just play the red garland idea on the five chord. Why do I do this? I want my undivided attention to be on what's happening on my five chord. And I want to zero in on and focus on the altered dominant sound. Okay, so let's bring the ensemble and let's check it out, then we'll talk about it. Here we go. What a great line, right? so fabulous line. One thing I want to say though, however, before we go any further, this is not about trying to memorize that melodic idea. And then you somehow drop kick it into a song into another setting into another context. That's not why we study transcriptions, that's not the approach, I highly discourage you from trying to do that. What we're trying to do here is to kind of peek through a window into the mind of red Garland, and see how he's using what he plays over dominant sound. And in this case, it's the altered dominance, right, it's the sharp fives and the flat fives and the sharp nines and flat nines that we're, we're picking up on and then we need to do some exercises that are going to help us incorporate those sounds into our plane and we're going to do that a little later here in the podcast episode, right. But this is not about trying to memorize a red garland lick and then utilize it in another song in another context in another setting. Okay, just needed to get that off my chest. Okay, so now look down at measure 28 the second orange box that I have highlighted around the C dominant. Here again, he is using the altered sounds. You can see that we have an A flat in there. So we have a we have a sharp five has an E flat a D flat in that line. So we have a sharp line and a flat nine. It's interesting he starts on a B natural which is you know, the B naturals coming from the bebop scale, right this you hear that kind of idea all the time, right? There's the root be natural, the half step down to the dominant seven. Right, so but he actually starts on this. So you get a little tension right out of that right out of the box here. Down to the third, there's the sharp nine, flat nine, flat seven, and then he resolves it to that F minor on the nine and the F minor. So the line is nice again. One more time. Nice. So now let's, let's put this into musical context, we have another minor 251 here, g half diminished c seven F minor, when bring the ensemble and we're going to zero in on that melodic idea, that altered sound. Again, I'm not going to do anything on the half diminished. On the two, I'm not going to play anything on the one on the F minor. I'm going to make all my effort, energy and attention, I'm going to have it focused on the C seven and the altered sound. So here we go. Let's check it out. So nice. Wow, really nice. And just FYI, I'm playing at a temple of 141 40. And the play along tracks that are included, that you have access to I have a 140 tempo in there. I also have a 100 and a and a 120. Right, some slower temples too. Of course, red garlin is playing this at a much faster tempo, but we are dissecting it and studying it. So always, always approach it at a much slower tempo. Okay, let's look at the next c dominant idea that red garland plays. So I want to draw your attention to measure 36. It's the third orange box that I have around that C seven. And again, he is utilizes in this line, he has a flat nine in there, he has a sharp nine in there, he actually starts on the 13th. So he starts on the A. And then he just he's basically going up the scale. Right on, and then he resolves to that F minor. So now he gets this nice idea, right? So he's right, going up the fully altered scale, he's approaching that B flat with that a natural so it's a half step approach meant to the seventh, in essence is what's going on there. And he goes right through that flat nine and that sharp nine. So let's bring the ensemble and let's listen to this in context. Again, we're going to do 251 I'm playing a G half diminished, doing nothing on that moving on my C seven playing the red garland idea and then resolving it to the F minor and doing nothing on the F minor again wanting all of my attention to be on the altered dominant chord the altered dominant sound. So here we go. Let's check it out and see what this sounds like. Very nice. One of the things that really should stick out like with an idea like that is how simplistic it is, regardless basically going up the fully altered scale. Alright, so he's not doing anything fancy with regards to notes, he's actually playing the notes, the notes of the altered dominant scale. So oftentimes, we want to complicate things and make it in our mind some highfalutin, you know, idea that he's playing when in actuality, you see here and this is the benefit of study and transcriptions, you see that it just simply is not the case. So if we look at the last c dominant idea that we're going to study here today, presented by red Garland, you see there in measure 47. So you'll see the fourth orange box around that see Sabbath. Again, he is working off a fully altered dominant scale, he has a flat nine and his idea he has that be natural, again, coming from the beat bebop scale. And so it sounds like this just straightforward again. Then he resolves that to that a flat that F minor right, so I get nothing complicated. What a great idea one more time. Wow. So now let's bring the ensemble and let's listen to this minor 251 g half diminished, the C seven altered to F minor. Again, nothing on the half diminished, nothing's going to occur on the minor on the one minor we're going to focus on the fully altered dominant sound on the sea seven. So here we go. Let's check it out. There you have it. For great ideas melodic ideas using altered dominant sounds given to us by red garland. Right and we zeroed in on the C dominant we could have done this with the G dominance that a flat dominant we could have we you know, there's several ways to dissect a transcription and to study transcription. Today, I am just focusing on the dominant sound, we could very easily looked at the extended lines over the entire 251 we could have isolated a major the major sound or the minor sound, right? So anyway, four great dominant altered dominant ideas by red garland. And now that we have specifically looked at how red garlin handles the C dominant, we can say without any reservation that he loves the altered dominant sound. So what do you think our first step should be for developing altered dominant vocabulary? Well, just in case you're not sure 100% certain as to how to begin developing altered dominant vocabulary. Let me tell you, we begin by developing and practicing altered dominant exercises. Right. In fact, everything we do every jazz panel skill we are wanting to gain a command of and eventually incorporate into our plane should always begin with very well thought out and strategic exercises. So what I want to give you today are four very well thought out and strategic exercises to help you gain a command of the fully altered dominant sound. Again, if the sound is good enough for red Garland, it's good enough for you and me. So let's look at some exercises to help us begin gaining the command of this sound so that we can begin developing jazz vocabulary to use in our playing. Okay, so grab your lead sheets, you have four of them for minor 251 exercises. Each one of these exercises, utilizes scale motion, and arpeggio motion. Right, those are the only two types of motion we have scale motion and arpeggio motion. And each one of these exercises utilizes each one of those, each one of the motions, scale and arpeggio going one of two directions. We only have two of those right, going up or down. So each exercise is designed around the concept that we have scale motion and we have arpeggio motion and music. And both scale motion and arpeggio motion can travel either ascending or descending. So the exercises are built that way. Okay. So you'll see on exercise number one, on the dominant chord on the C dominant chord there, you'll see that the scale starts on what the flat nine, so we're starting our scale on an altered sound. And then we ascend through the sound and resolve it to the F minor, then you'll see right directly beneath that, the same scale motion, but descending Now, again, starting on the flat nine, and descending through the scale, and resolving eventually to F minor. So now there you have ascending and descending scale motion, starting from the flat nine. Then directly beneath that you'll see ascending arpeggio motion, starting from where the flat nine arpeggio arpeggiating through flat, 9/3, sharp five, flat nine and then resolving to the F minor, then we do the opposite, we decent. So we start on the flat nine up on top, we descend down through the flat five, I mean sharp five, sorry, third, and then flat nine and resolve it to the F minor. So it's kind of interesting. Exercise one actually has four little sub exercises, if you will, you have the lead sheet in front of you. Now with the lead sheet in front of you, I want you to follow along. As I demonstrate each one of these exercises, I'm going to play each one a couple times, right. And again, I'm not doing anything on the half diminished. I'm not doing anything on the minor as you can see on the lead sheet, all my attention is on the altered dominant sound, ascending descending scale motion, ascending descending arpeggio motion. So let's bring the ensemble in and let's check it out. Follow along. Here we go. Pretty cool, right? How nice right? Starting from the flat nine ascending, descending scale motion, and starting from the flat nine ascending descending arpeggio motion. Okay, so now you get the idea. So now look at exercise number two, same to five one progression minor, 251, g half diminished to C seven altered to F minor. But now everything's going to launch from the sharp nine. So you're gonna see there we got ascending and descending scale motion from the sharp nine resolving to the F minor and we have ascending and descending arpeggio mo From the sharp nine, so we're going to do the exact same process, except our entry point is different. We're now we're starting on the sharp nine. So let's bring the ensemble back in. And we're going to play through each one of these a couple times. So follow along with your lead sheet in hand, and you'll get an idea of what's happening here. So let's check it out. Then we'll go from there. Here we go. What a great way to isolate and practice the altered dominant sound, right? So listen, all of you jazz piano skills members, be sure to use the play along tracks that I have developed and provide for you. With every jazz piano skill podcast episode. To help you practice these exercises, though, you now have access to three play along tracks for each key for all 12 keys, right, each using a different temple. So we I mentioned earlier, temples 101 20, and 140. So you have access to 36 play along tracks three for each key that will help you get a command of and master the altered dominant sound by practicing it as I'm laying out here today. Okay. You also in addition to getting the command of the altered dominant sound, using these play along tracks, of course, are going to help you develop a strong sense of time, articulation and feel so used. Yes, the illustrations, yes, the lead sheets, but yes, do not forget about the play long tracks as well. Okay. So now let's look at the next exercise exercise three, again, minor, 251, g half diminished, the C seven altered, go into F minor. We've already launched from the flat nine, we've already launched from the sharp nine. So guess what's next, our entry point now is going to be the flat five. So we're going to practice ascending and descending altered scale motion with the entry point of flat five. And we're going to practice ascending and descending arpeggio motion with the entry point of the flat five. And you can see it laid out again on your lead sheet. So I'm going to bring the ensemble in. We're going to play through each one of these a couple times so you can get a idea of how it sounds in context. So here we go. Let's check it out. Nice. All right. So okay, so we've done flat nine, we're done sharp nine, we've launched from the flat five. So exercise for you know what's coming. We're going to do the exact same thing, scale and arpeggio motion, ascending, descending, and also, arpeggio motion, ascending, descending, but now launching from the sharp five. So we're gonna bring the ensemble back in, we're gonna go through this exact same process, nothing on the half diminished all our focus on the ultra dominant scale, and nothing on the minor, one chord, the F minor. Okay, so let's bring the ensemble in and let's listen to our scale and arpeggio motion ascending and descending, with our entry point being the sharp five. Alright, here we go. Let's check it out. Very, very nice. Now, do you see I mentioned earlier that whenever we attack any jazz piano skill, we must begin, we must start by developing and practicing very strategic exercises. That everything we do every jazz piano skill, we are wanting to gain a command of and incorporate eventually incorporate into our plain must always begin with very well thought out and strategic exercises. That is what I've presented you with today. The importance of getting a command of the altered dominant sound, as demonstrated by red garlin in what is this thing called love, and giving you for very specific exercises to help you strategically work through that sound, using ascending or descending scale and arpeggio motion, launching from the flat nine, the sharp nine, the flat five, and the sharp five, very structured, very methodical, very strategic, which will lead to your success. Wow. That is a lot of information in a very short period of time. I hope you have found this jazz panel skills podcast lesson exploring red garland solo on what is this thing called love? To be very insightful, and of course to be very beneficial. Don't forget if you are a jazz piano skills member. I will see you online Thursday evening at the jazz panel skills masterclass at 8pm Central time to discuss this podcast episode lesson exploring red garland solo on what is this thing called love in greater detail, and to answer any questions that you may have about the study of jazz in general. Also, as a jazz piano skills member, be sure to use those podcast guides those lead sheet guides the play along tracks check out the jazz piano skills courses, all of it use all of it to maximize your musical growth. And likewise, make sure you are an active participant in the jazz piano skills forums. Get involved make some new friends jazz piano friends from around the world. As always, you can reach me by phone 972-380-8050 extension 211 by email Dr. Lawrence at jazz piano skills.com that's Dr. Lawrence at jazz piano skills.com or by speaking Pipe found on the jazz panels skills website in the educational podcast guides, the lead sheets, the link is out there all over the place. So don't be afraid to contact me. That's it. 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