HomeLJS PodcastLJS 02: How to Properly Learn a Jazz Standard

LJS 02: How to Properly Learn a Jazz Standard

Welcome to episode 2 of the LJS Podcast where today we are talking about how to properly learn a jazz standard. In this episode we talk about why learning jazz standards is so important and 5 great steps to learning a jazz standard so you can really own it. Find out how!

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In this episode

  1. Why learning jazz standards is important.

  2. Listen to the tune.

    • Listen to a variety of different versions and take your time.

    • Buy different versions or use resources like Youtube or Spotify to research the song.

  3. Learn the melody by ear.

    • Learn it by ear, not with sheet music.

    • Be able to sing it before bringing it to your instrument.

    • Listen to artists who play/sing the melody straight such as Frank Sinatra.

  4. Learn the harmony by ear.

    • Learn it by ear before checking with a fakebook or sheet music.

    • Use the bass as your guide to find the roots, and the accompany instrument to identify the quality of the chord.

  5. Practice the tune in different keys.

    • Put what you learned to the test by being able to play it outside of the original key.

    • Helps you develop your ear and understand how the chords relate to each other.

  6. Find someone to jam with.

Important Links:
LJS Inner Circle Membership

Free Guide to learn standards by ear: Learn Jazz Standards the Smart Way

Listen to Episode 1: 4 Habits For Better Practicing

Further reading:

Why Learn Jazz Standards?

How to Learn the Melody of a Jazz Standard By Ear

How to Learn a Jazz Standard and Not Forget It

50 Jazz Standards You Need to Know

How do you learn jazz standards? Leave a comment below.

Brent Vaartstra
Brent Vaartstrahttp://www.brentvaartstra.com
Brent Vaartstra is a professional jazz guitarist and educator living in New York City. He is the head blogger and podcast host for learnjazzstandards.com 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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