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Thread: Improv From Scratch

  1. #26
    Registered User Pete Martin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improv From Scratch

    Improv From Scratch #19 Quarter notes and rests


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    Pete Martin
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  3. #27
    Registered User Mike Buesseler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improv From Scratch

    I know this is a dumb question, but Iím going to ask anyway: how come something that sounds like so much fun, and LOOKS so easy when people do it well IS SO DIFFICULT TO LEARN? I play a LOT, but improv seems to be just on the other side of a very thin door. (I can hear it, but I canít open the damn door!)

  4. #28
    Registered User Pete Martin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improv From Scratch

    You just have to dive in and do it. Nobody is a good improvisor in the beginning. The best at it have been doing it a long time and have really studied how great players in the past have done it. You are just beginning the journey, so have fun, but keep doing it!!!!!

    And there are no dumb questions. Yours in perfectly legit Mike.

    -----------
    Pete Martin
    www.PetimarPress.com www.Jazz-Mandolin.com
    Instruction books, videos: Bluegrass, Jazz, improvisation, ergonomics
    Private lessons in Seattle and Issaquah WA, Skype lessons to anywhere
    Pete Martin Plays Wes Montgomery free download
    http://www.jazz-mandolin.com/PetePlaysWes.xht

  5. #29

    Default Re: Improv From Scratch

    Mike, to Pete's great advice I would add that you need to lose your natural desire to sound good when you start improvising. There are lots of play-along recordings that you can practice with in the privacy of your own home. A great part of the success as an improvisor is to do what Pete says -- dive in and do it. It will not sound so great at the start, but as you do it more and more you will begin to develop finger patterns that will give you good sounding notes to begin with.

    And separate from improvising practice, work on your scales in the most common keys that you're likely to want to improvise in. Then work on the pentatonic versions of those scales (notes 1,2,3,5,6,1) because that gives the least conflicting group of notes for improvising for a lot of folk, bluegrass, pop/rock, Great-American-Songbook tunes.

    Another thing to do to help you feel more comfortable making things up is to simply make things up without trying to fit into an accompaniment. Just noodle on your mandolin in a specific key. Remember Sturgeon's Law that 90% of anything is crap -- when you see performers or hear recordings you have to remember that you're only seeing or hearing the 10% that is good, not the 90% that isn't good that got left in the practice room or on the editing room floor at the recording studio.

  6. #30
    Registered User Pete Martin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improv From Scratch

    If anyone has questions regarding material in the videos, I'm happy to answer them to the best of my ability here. Or I can suggest a plan of action for practicing the material and how to apply it in improv in real time. There is a LOT to learn, but it IS learnable.

    I'll add one more thing, a common jazz teachers saying:

    "Good improv is 5% inspiration and 95% perspiration"

    Holy cow is this true!
    -----------
    Pete Martin
    www.PetimarPress.com www.Jazz-Mandolin.com
    Instruction books, videos: Bluegrass, Jazz, improvisation, ergonomics
    Private lessons in Seattle and Issaquah WA, Skype lessons to anywhere
    Pete Martin Plays Wes Montgomery free download
    http://www.jazz-mandolin.com/PetePlaysWes.xht

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