Rebecca Cline

workshops

piano black dress-28.jpg

Improvising With Clave

Musicians who seek to play Latin jazz with more rhythmic authenticity often receive glib advice from veteran players: "Just listen to the clave!" To musicians with years of experience, playing with a command of the style probably is as simple as listening to the clave. However, for the uninitiated, merely hearing the five hits that make up the clave pattern is not always a revelation.

Analyzing examples from the repertoire, participants develop an awareness of common rhythmic tendencies of clave-based improvisation. Participants apply several two-bar phrases that work with the clave to a variety of harmonic settings in order to internalize clave phrasing on their instruments.


Phrasing Variety in Jazz Improvisation

Many improvisers spend a great deal of time learning about which notes to play, without giving a lot of thought to when to play them. As a result, phrases often begin on beat one, and the solos can sound boring and predictable despite the well-informed pitch choices. Without learning any new scales, an improviser can dramatically increase the interest level of the solo by being mindful of phrasing.

Practicing phrasing can be just as intentional as practicing chord scales. Participants perform simple two-measure rhythmic exercises over standard song forms to become familiar with starting a phrase on a beat other than beat one. Pitch restrictions allow the improviser to focus on the rhythmic and metric characteristics of each phrase. 


How to Use Chord Scales in Jazz Improvisation

Once we have determined which chord scales to use over a given set of changes, how do we make the scales sound musical? Playing the scales up and down certainly isn't the answer, even though that is often the most familiar reference we have for scales, based on our training. 

After practicing a variety of scalar techniques, participants will group-compose a solo that incorporates scales that:

  • use a variety of intervals and rhythms
  • are missing one note
  • use passing tones to connect chord tones
  • voice-lead into the next scale

 

Berklee/

private lessons

concert (25 of 58).jpg

BLURB

The following is placeholder text known as “lorem ipsum,” which is scrambled Latin used by designers to mimic real copy. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Nulla eu pretium massa. Fusce at massa nec sapien auctor gravida in in tellus.

 

Afro-Cuban Piano Improvisation

The following is placeholder text known as “lorem ipsum,” which is scrambled Latin used by designers to mimic real copy. Nullam sit amet nisi condimentum erat iaculis auctor. Suspendisse nec congue purus.

Ensembles

The following is placeholder text known as “lorem ipsum,” which is scrambled Latin used by designers to mimic real copy. Mauris id fermentum nulla. Class aptent taciti sociosqu ad litora torquent per conubia nostra, per inceptos himenaeos.

Improvisation in Latin Jazz

The following is placeholder text known as “lorem ipsum,” which is scrambled Latin used by designers to mimic real copy. Donec eu est non lacus lacinia semper. Aliquam bibendum, turpis eu mattis iaculis, ex lorem mollis sem, ut sollicitudin risus orci quis tellus. Donec eget risus diam. Quisque congue porttitor ullamcorper. Suspendisse nec congue purus.