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HomeLJS PodcastHow to Play More Melodic Jazz Solos

How to Play More Melodic Jazz Solos

Welcome to episode 285 where today I talk about how to play more melodic jazz solos. What separates the amateurs from the experts is how melodic a jazz solo is. So if you are stuck with boring solos, or solos that sound like scales, this episode will give you actionable steps for transforming your solos into memorable ones.

Listen to episode 285

If you’re like 99% of the people that come to me for help with their jazz playing and their improvisation, you are not happy with your jazz solos right now.

There’s something about them that is missing and you are not quite sure what it is when you compare yourself to other great jazz musicians you know or your favorite ones that you listen to recordings on.

The key is that great jazz musicians are always playing melodically.

And they don’t sound like they’re playing scales. They don’t sound like they are playing chord tones. They don’t sound like they are playing mechanically at all. They sound like they’re playing organic, living, breathing melodies. 

So how do you play jazz solos that sing and that are melodic? 

Well, that’s exactly what I’m talking about in today’s episode — how do we improvise melodically. I’m going to give you some practical advice, some steps, and some things that you can practice today.

In this episode:

1. What makes a melody great

2. Strategy for making the chord changes come out in your solos

3. Voiceleading as a tool for developing melody

4. Making your solos singeable by practicing creating them.

Important Links

1. LJS Inner Circle Membership

Brent Vaartstra
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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