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Home LJS Podcast Play better jazz solos LJS 155: Using "Musical Playgrounds" For Better Improvisation (feat. Christopher Sutton)

LJS 155: Using “Musical Playgrounds” For Better Improvisation (feat. Christopher Sutton)

Welcome to episode 155 of the LJS Podcast where today we have special guest Christopher Sutton back on the show to talk to us about improvisation. What I love about this interview is Christopher is not a jazz musician, and he offers some unique perspectives on improvisation that are really refreshing. Learn about musical playgrounds and how thinking this way will enlighten your improv.

Listen to episode 155

As jazz musicians, we often make jazz improvisation super complicated for ourselves. It’s a natural reaction to the nature of jazz music, which let’s face it, is a bit complicated.

But the truth is, if we want to become the best improvisers we can be, we need to simplify. We need to think less and create more.

On today’s show, we have special guest Christopher Sutton from Musical U back on the show. He talks to us about their approach to improvisation, and specifically the idea of “musical playgrounds.”

The best thing about having Christopher as a guest is he is not a jazz musician. His perspective is refreshing and quite helpful for making things feel comfortable and simple.

This episode is rock solid, so get ready to take some notes.

In this episode:

1. The mindset of an improviser (the non-jazz perspective).

2. “Musical Playgrounds,” what they are, and how to think about them.

3. Different ways to apply the concept of Musical Playgrounds to your improvisation.

4. Important ear training skills for improvisers to work on.

5. Common mistakes beginner improvisers make.

Thanks to Christopher Sutton for sharing so much value in this episode. If we apply this concept of musical playgrounds, we can start feeling more creative, less tense, and more musical.

Let me know in the comments:

How are you going to apply the concept of “Musical Playgrounds” to your¬†practicing this week?

Important Links

Christopher Sutton’s Musical U

LJS 81: How to Set Game-Changing Goals for Your Musicianship (feat. Christopher Sutton)

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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