Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Jazz Theory Lesson from Greenblatt

Learn a Standard #4
‘There is No Greater Love’—Harmony
Submit a photo of your work with pencil and paper for this theory work
We will now be moving on to the challenging task of improvising on “There is No Greater Love.”  A big part of the challenge is the harmony—the chord changes. Before we ask you to get in there and improvise over these chord changes, we’re going to ask you to carefully think them through and practice them so that you’re not “flying blind.”  So the assignment this week is a written one rather than one that involves playing—you’ll get back to that next week.
Download and print out a copy of the chord chart in your key. 
Then spell out each chord (in pencil!!) in the blank staff.  Use note heads but no stems.  If you don’t fully understand one or more of the chord symbols, do some research on the internet or ask one of your peers ... try musictheory.net .  If you still don’t know, make your best guess so that we can find out what you’re missing and help you out.
After you’ve written in the note heads, do some thinking and identify, for each chord:
  1. Those notes in the chord that are not in the previous chord.
  2. Those notes in the chord that are not part of the scale indicated by the key signature.
Draw (in pencil!!) a box around the #1’s and parentheses around the #2’s.  Some notes will need to have both the box and the parentheses.  Here’s an example, from our tune’s first three bars, in concert pitch, treble clef (thereby saving a bit of work for piano and guitar players):
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Once you’ve gotten this figured out and written out, then start practicing playing these tones on your instrument.  Start with just the chord tones in root position, learning how to arpeggiate each chord.  Then start fooling around with each chord, extending the range, playing it in different inversions, skipping around the tones.  Experiment with leaving notes out (like: play only the notes with boxes, or only the notes with parentheses, or always leave out the root).  Once you’ve got control over each chord, try playing them in tempo (start slow if this is new to you). 
This will work best if done for a few minutes each day!
Take a photo of your effort and submit it for credit by Friday.