“The piano ain't got no wrong notes.” That’s what legendary pianist Thelonious Monk once commented. Anyone who has ever played a piano knows how true the statement is. Every key of this instrument creates melody. Once learned, it stays with us in our soul and blends with the creative instincts. Thousands of stories have been told as to how piano has helped distressed people find inspiration when life deserted them. Maybe that’s why Norah Jones made a point when she said “Without a piano I don't know how to stand, don't know what to do with my hands”.
Why Piano is part of our lives
Rhythms and melodies soothe our mind. When hectic lifestyle leads to early burnout, and stress creates stigma, wonderful sounds of the piano can make you forget everything.
Other than being a great ally in the moments of desolation and creativity, piano also offers numerous benefits. They are:
* Playing the piano improves cognitive skills. Scientific research studies have already proven that music stimulates our brain.
* Pianists have better hand-eye coordination as they play music notes using various keys.
* People who play piano are disciplined as it needs dedication and focus to pick the notes and subtle variations. It takes patience to learn those skills.
* Playing this instrument increases mental health. It reduces depression, and other issues that come from isolation or other kinds of personal trauma.
Jazz Piano – A Creative Pursuit
Are you curious after having heard so much about this instrument? Piano has been an integral part of music in American history. When talking about history, we can’t leave out jazz. The ‘swing’, melodies, and harmony of this classic art form have been the root of music in this nation. In this context, piano has played a multifaceted role since the inception of jazz in both solo and ensemble settings.
Learning jazz can unleash your creativity by exploring its various sub-genres, styles, and compositions. You can actually bring out the free-flowing melodies that you may have always dreamed of. Taking piano lessons can put you right on the track towards a musical destination which gives meaning to life and stirs the soul.
You could already be a pianist, but might feel stuck when trying to improvise, without actually knowing what you want to do. Improvisation is like interpreting fantasy into reality. But often thoughts and actions don’t sync to give the desired results. Maybe it’s time for you to brush up your skills with the help of the masters.
Things to Learn in Jazz Piano
Some of the following piano exercises that both beginners and advanced jazz students learn and practice are:
* Warm up by doing Finger Stretch
* Playing major scale on Major 7 chords
* Dominant scale
* Dorian scale used on minor 7 chords
* Notes in minor third
* Notes within an octave
* Bebop Displacement
* Tri-Tone Substitution
* Learning to improvise
By working with reputed jazz educators and established pianists, students can develop virtuoso technique and harmonic and rhythmic imagination to excel in playing.
Developing an ear for music
Other than taking piano lessons and practicing, you need to listen to improvisational lines of famous pianists such as Art Tatum, Bill Evans, Bud Powell, and of course Thelonious Monk. Take help from your instructors and try to pick those compositions, and practice often. Keep on practicing lessons in various cycles rather than making it typically routinized. It will create more scope for creativity.
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