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Home LJS Podcast Jazz Tips and Advice LJS 136: I Critique My Jazz Playing From 7 Years Ago

LJS 136: I Critique My Jazz Playing From 7 Years Ago

Welcome to episode 136 of the LJS Podcast where today I listen back to a recording of myself from 2011 and give myself some honest feedback and critique. It’s a great practice to record yourself and listening to old recordings can help you gain insight into where you were, where you are now, and how you can improve. Listen in!

Listen to episode 136

In today’s episode, I take a little trip down memory lane and listen to an old recording of myself from 2011.

One practice I always encourage my course students to do is record themselves. Not only is it helpful to do it regularly to give yourself a degree of separation for honest critique, but it’s also helpful to look back at old recordings to measure improvement.

The song I critique myself on is “Gone With The Wind,” a nice standard in Concert Eb major. The setting is a duo with a bass player, which lends for lots of things to look at.

Here’s a bit of what I talk about today:

1. How much is too much embellishment of the melody?

2. Comping sparsely vs. spelling out the harmony.

3. When cool triplet lines need to be diversified.

4. What I liked about the spirit of my improvisation.

I hope that you get a lot of listening to my commentary and my critiques of my playing from years ago. I know it was helpful for me to compare and contrast what I did then and what I do now.

I even found some things I would like to go back to! Hopefully, this has encouraged you to record yourself and go out and do the same.

Brent Vaartstra
Brent Vaartstra is a professional jazz guitarist and educator living in New York City. He is the head blogger and podcast host for which he owns and operates. He actively performs around the New York metropolitan area and is the author of the Hal Leonard publication "Visual Improvisation for Jazz Guitar." He's also the host of the music entrepreneurship podcast "Passive Income Musician."



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