LJS 172: 5 Things I Did to Jump-Start My Jazz Playing

Welcome to episode 172 of the LJS Podcast where today I share my personal story of how I jump-started my jazz skills. When I first became interested in jazz I felt like I was way behind compared to my peers. I wanted to become a great jazz improviser and so I invested my time and energy into it. I go over 5 things that had a big impact on my jazz playing and will have a big impact on yours as well.

Listen to episode 172

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There is so much noise out there when it comes to jazz education.

There are online resources such as YouTube videos, blog posts, podcasts like this one, books, courses, different teachers with competing ideas of how to improve your jazz playing. And quite frankly, this can be overwhelming.

There’s so much content out there, we can get stuck in analysis paralysis — jumping from one thing to the next, not really sure how for us we’re going to get to the next level in our jazz playing.

Well, I thought I’d share in today’s episode, my personal story of how I jump-started my jazz skills. From really not having a lot of understanding of the jazz language, to really being proficient in the jazz language.

So, I’m going to share my personal story, how I did it, the 5 things that I focused on in order to reach the level of playing I’m at today.

In this episode:

1. I found a mentor and stuck with a program

2. I played out live

3. I learned jazz language by ear

4. I learned my instrument better

5. I stayed consistent

Thanks for listening to this episode of the Learn Jazz Standards Podcast. If you aren’t already, make sure you are subscribed on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts.

I look forward to having you join me in the next episode!

Important Links

30 Steps to Better Jazz Playing

LJS 100: My Jazz Mentor Gives You His Best Tips and Advice (feat. Justin Nielsen)

30 Stepsto Better Jazz Playing

6 COMMENTS

  1. Thank for your interesting biography Brent! Can you tell us how you managed to get so many gigs ? I'm struggling to find (paid) piano playing work.

    • Hey Dina, it is tough! In short, hustling and reaching out to venues, as well as networking with other musicians, and making connections with companies hiring for private events.

  2. Very Good information and an excellent pattern to follow except for the fact that my playing is not at the level where public playing would be too enjoyable for me or for the listener

  3. I agree about too much material when trying to be a better jazz player . I’m guilty of looking online , buying books doing ( research) and what happens i end up just doing exactly that “ research” i do gain knowledge but it’s not helping when I’m not putting it into use .

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