Jazz Piano Lessons in London often turn into “academic research” of theory which leads to unsatisfactory results.
Learning Jazz Piano with THE RIGHT APPROACH is a CREATIVE EXPERIENCE which will Unleash Your Musical Abilities.
5 Reasons Why You Are Struggling With Jazz Piano And Improvisation.
Whilst performing a solo or an improvisation, is there enough time - in the "heat of the moment" - to remember the names of Greek Scales? The simple answer to this question is NO!
From your early school days and childhood piano lessons, you were told to play everything exactly as it was written on the music sheet. If you "changed" even a note, you would likely be faced with failing your piano exam.
Now think for a second what such an approach may do to your overall approach to playing music! The main reason why you are struggling with Jazz Piano is that you have not removed this conditioning from your thinking, and that is not your fault!!
You need a new way of playing music and the first step is to put the sheet music in the drawer.
We live in a culture where everyone is terrified of failure. Surprisingly, the world will keep spinning if you play the wrong note! To really grow and learn, you need to be in a non-judgmental environment, where you can try and experiment with new things on the piano you didn't think were possible.
Start by changing your own beliefs about what is 'right' or 'wrong'. Are you going to make some strange sounds in the process, sure! That doesn't really matter so much, at least not as much as you believe it does!
You need time and space to shape your musical sound and vision, and you can't do that if you are always judging yourself!
Whilst it is very important to have influences and favorite players, the notion that just copying transcripts of their solos will make you a great jazz musician is one of the biggest myths in music education. It's just like saying, learning a Mozart Concerto will make you compose like Mozart.
If you want to build your own great solos, you need to put pen and paper away and return to your instrument. Learning to listen to yourself and your own musical sound is key.
Keith Jarrett didn't become Keith Jarrett by writing out Bill Evans solos and John Coltrane most likely never spent a day in his life trying to sound like Charlie Parker, while Charlie Parker would get the original song, change the melody completely and pretend it was his song all along.
See the pattern here!
One of the most valuable lessons to learn from African Music, which is the Grandfather of Jazz, Blues and Folk Music in general, is the RELATIONSHIP THE ARTIST HAS WITH THE MUSIC. Today, we think a great musician is someone with good chops, who can play fast or knows lots of scales and can copy lots of covers. The roots of Jazz, African Music and Folk Music from all over the Planet has a binding common ground.
In African folklore it's also a sign of status, the drummer leading the procession is not necessarily the best musician in the village; he is leading the music because of his wisdom, age or status. Many musicians have lost their own connection with the spirit behind the music. By relearning how to tell your story through music and applying who you truly are to what it is you play, will enable you to LET GO!
Jazz is about liberation and so is the art of improvisation. By feeling comfortable with being yourself and letting GO whilst playing the chords, notes, and scales to your preference and experience, you will improve much faster and unleash a gust of creative energy!
Of course, you need tools and you need scales, however, they are just the seeds which you can only harvest if you are in the right mindset and in a helpful environment.