Best songbooks according to redditors

We found 787 Reddit comments discussing the best songbooks. We ranked the 396 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.

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Folk & traditional songbooks
Popular songbooks
Specific artist songbooks
Choral songbooks
Guitar & fretted instrument songbooks
Mixed collection songbooks
Musicals & film songbooks
Percussion songbooks
Piano songbooks
Piano, vocal & guitar songbooks
Vocal songbooks
Brass songbooks
String songbooks
Woodwinds songbooks
Jazz songbooks

Top Reddit comments about Songbooks:

u/wc_helmets · 11 pointsr/WeAreTheMusicMakers

Scales. Particularly major. And practicing in all 12 keys. Even when not playing I'd work on memorizing the notes in each key. Once you have that branch to minor scales, modes, and maybe some pentatonic and altered scales for flavor. Again. All 12 keys.

ii-V-I progressions, again in all 12 keys. Start with simple voicings at first, like playing the bass in your left hand and playing just playing the 3rd and the 7th in the right hand. You can add more fingers once you get comfortable with that.

Honestly, that will keep you busy for years, if your anything like me. You can also just dive in and practice these concepts in your favorite DAW. If you got a section with a V-I in it, try substituting the V with a bII7 and see how it sounds. Like any art, you can learn as much as you want, but you gotta get your hands dirty.

Edit: I'd also get a good Jazz piano book. This one by Mark Levine is a great one. Been going through it for at least 3 years now. I can't play as well as I like, but from these concepts, I can take a lead sheet and work out an arrangement of a song in Ableton.

u/Yeargdribble · 9 pointsr/piano

If you haven't worked through this book, I'd recommend it. Afterward you'd be able to open up a fake book and start working on tunes effectively.

You basically want to be able to play your 3-7 voicings (in both positions) for all ii-V-I progressions in every key. Then pick a chart and read it down using that format. Once you can comfortably read it down with 3-7 voicings, now add the melody on top.

This will affect which of the two "inversions" of the 3-7 to use at a given time. Sometimes the melody will be one of these guide tones and sometimes it will be something else requiring you to get pretty good at making that adjustment on the fly.

Once you're decent at that, I'd say start exploring other voicings. Obviously simple block rootless voicings are a good choice. You can get pretty deep in the weeds on voicings on this fantastic Youtube channel (/u/BluesBoy666). The Mark Levine book would also be a good choice once you're at this point.

However, the Mark Harrison book will get you started much more easily and actually flows in a good progressive order including some good ideas for comping patterns (for basic swing and bossa), basic shells and other stuff and introduces the concepts to you systematically. It's a good way to make sure you're not missing any important bit of scaffolding.

Realistically you might not even finish that book in a month, but it's a place to start so that you can actually begin apply the concepts to actual charts and practice them in the context that that would actually be used.

u/CrownStarr · 8 pointsr/piano

Thing is, that sort of thinking doesn't really work too well in jazz - there isn't really "repertoire" in the same sense as in classical music. Some standards are more complex than others, sure, but the difficulty is really what you make of it. In jazz, you generally work from what are called "lead sheets", where all you have is the melody and the chords. Here's one for When I Fall in Love. Pretty simplistic, right? Here's Oscar Peterson playing it. The lead sheet is the basic framework for what he's playing, but all the embellishment and runs and extra chords and everything is just coming from him. So you can't really say whether When I Fall in Love is an "easy" standard or not.

As for how to learn, the single best way is to get a teacher. But if you just want to start dabbling, I would suggest getting some books of transcriptions of famous jazz pianists, just to start getting the feel and sound of it in your mind. Those books will have real performances transcribed note-for-note, so you don't need to know how to read lead sheets or improvise to play them. I would also check out Mark Levine's Jazz Piano Book to start learning the theory behind it all, and a Real Book to start practicing with. If you're good at teaching yourself things, the combination of those two books will give you years and years of material.

But I want to re-emphasize that getting some kind of teacher or mentor will help enormously. It's good for classical music, as you know, but jazz is even more like learning a foreign language, because it's improvised. If you just want to dabble for fun, that's fine, but if you get serious about jazz, find someone to guide you, even if it's just an hour a month.

u/earlymusicaficionado · 8 pointsr/trumpet

The Irons Book will help you with these sorts of things. You are probably making your intervals by tightening embouchure, rather than controlling tongue arch.

u/RocktimusCrime · 8 pointsr/trumpet

What I'm going to say, I'm not saying maliciously. You need to stop being short-sighted and wanting instant gratification. You're not very good right now and you're not going to be good for a while. You need to make a practice schedule and stick to it. The tone, range, dexterity, and reading skills will come eventually through hard-work and dedication.

This is a great website for ear-training:

Beginning books: Clarke, Irons, Schlossberg

Good beginning pieces to work towards, (I've included links to videos and purchasing sites): Charlier Etudes 1 & 2, Leroy Anderson's Trumpeter's Lullaby, Handel's Aria Con Variazioni, Jules Levy's Grand Russian Fantasia

u/woflcopter · 7 pointsr/FrankOcean
u/Ripleylovescats · 7 pointsr/FrankOcean

Frank Ocean - Channel Orange (Piano/Vocal/Guitar)

u/tonyskyday · 7 pointsr/trumpet

You're right that breathing is not just about bringing in more air. You could take the biggest breath in the world, but if you don't have any breath control and you only use a thimble-full of air to play, it's not really doing you any good.

Language is weird and typing about this stuff can lead to confusion, but I would not use the word "push" to describe how we use air when we play trumpet.

Here's a few book recommendations that have good information and exercises:

The Breathing Book, by David Vining

The Buzzing Book by James Thompson

27 Groups of Exercises by Earl D. Irons

I also recommend checking out the Breathing Gym:

The Breathing Gym (Book & DVD) by Sam Palafian and Patrick Sheridan

u/Xenoceratops · 6 pointsr/musictheory

Depends on what sort of rep you're in to (into?). I read a lot of popular music scholarship. These are books that I have either read or am going to read, in no particular order:

Brad Osborn - Everything in its Right Place: Analyzing Radiohead

Robert Walser - Running with the Devil:Power, Gender, and Madness in Heavy Metal Music

Walter Everett - The Foundations of Rock

Walter Everett - The Beatles as Musicians: The Quarry Men through Rubber Soul, Revolver through the Anthology

Understanding Rock: Essays in Musical Analysis, ed. John Covach and Graeme Boone

Richard Middleton - Studying Popular Music

Allan Moore - Song Means:Analysing and Interpreting Recorded Popular Song

Analyzing Popular Music, ed. Allan Moore

† = A bunch of essays crammed into a book. These are nice because you can read a 20-50 page study on a topic and move on.

I'll recommend these as more general reading, geared toward classical music but useful in other styles as well:

William Caplin - Classical Form: A Theory of Formal Functions for the Instrumental Music of Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven (Every researcher in the field knows or should know this one. I would also recommend Hepokoski and Darcy - Elements of Sonata Theory, which is the other big form book, but it is a veritable tome and hardly light reading. Not that much of what I've recommended is very light.)

Janet Schmalfeldt - In the Process of Becoming:Analytic and Philosophical Perspectives on Form in Early Nineteenth-Century Music (I haven't read this yet, but it's in the same universe of form studies as the above.)

Kofi Agawu - Music as Discourse: Semiotic Adventures in Romantic Music (Agawu has written a lot on various topics and should be on your radar.)

Alfred Mann - The Study of Fugue (Broken up into two parts: part 1 is a history of fugue, part 2 is about fugal technique.)

I'll point you toward this one since it is totally awesome and helped me to understand medieval liturgical music theory and culture (though you might find yourself lost if you are not already familiar with some of the concepts):

Anna Maria Busse Berger - Medieval Music and the Art of Memory

You might also consider ordering a hard copy of some journal issues, as these can be quite compact and give you a lot of breadth.

Journal of Music Theory (JMT)

Music Theory Spectrum (MTS)

u/krypton86 · 6 pointsr/Learnmusic

Who the hell told you counterpoint was easy to learn?

No, my friend, counterpoint is the pinnacle of composition. It's dreaded by every music major and even the theory/composition majors have a healthy fear of it.

I don't really know of any online source that can teach you what you need to know, either. Maybe some theory, but not counterpoint. You need to get a book and diligently work through the exercises. I recommend Study of Counterpoint: From Johann Joseph Fux's Gradus Ad Parnassum, Kennan's Counterpoint and Mann's The Study of Fugue for this. Check out both the Fux and the Kennan first and decide on one, then if you find that you want to go deeper go ahead and get the book on fugue study.

u/negyvenot · 6 pointsr/Woodshed

I recommend Mickey Baker's Jazz Guitar Course to get quicly going with easy jazz strumming (really useful turnarounds and all), and Ted Greene's Jazz Guitar Single Note Soloing for some nice'n'easy soloing ideas over major, dominant and minor chords. Ymmv though

u/[deleted] · 6 pointsr/Guitar

LISTEN. Immerse yourself in all the masters, Wes Montgomery, Joe Pass and Tal Farlow for example, and try to figure out their different licks/riffs by ear.

Also, while listening is probably the best way to do it, I really think that you (and everyone else, obviously) should take advantage of all the great books out there to help. This Mickey Baker book gives great, jazzy sound chords and lessons on soloing. So yeah, hoped it helped in some way.

u/BlueArmistice · 6 pointsr/Bass

I picked up a copy of the Bass Grimoire early on in my career. It does a similar thing but for nearly every scale imaginable.

u/LiamGaughan · 6 pointsr/WeAreTheMusicMakers

Mark Levine Jazz Piano Book!

That, and a teacher (If you're not down with jazz harmony to begin with)

And of course, Real Book :)

u/organic · 6 pointsr/piano

The Mark Levine books The Jazz Theory Book and The Jazz Piano Book are both good resources.

u/frajen · 6 pointsr/Jazz

When I was younger, the concept of improvisation in music gave me a reason to live. I was 17, I didn't want kids and there was no point to middle-class suburban life. But if I could come home from whatever my job was, even if I hated it, I could sit at my piano and play how I felt... if I could express myself through music, in a way I could never do so in words - then I would be happy.

I wrote about that idea in a college entry essay, and it has never left me, 13 years later I still feel the same way. Granted, I feel a bit more responsible about many things in life, but at the end of the day I still hold on to that belief.

Initially, jazz was the vehicle through which I learned improvisation, so I feel very close to the music, even if I really don't play in a traditional jazz style. Improvisation was the outwards expression of my feelings; before I learned about jazz, I could only read notes on a page to play music, and I was way too shy to talk or even write about how I was truly feeling, let alone share that with other people.

My "life" has essentially revolved around music ever since high school. I've played gigs, gone on tour, recorded/put together an album (doing the artwork, manually putting together the CD jewel cases), taught music theory/composition/performance, organized shows/event calendars, funded bands/projects, ran venues/music spaces, produced music for video games... I work a regular day job nowadays, but my #1 passion is and will always be music, whether I'm performing it or enabling others the opportunity to perform.


I took classical piano lessons as a young kid for ~6 years, then I quit. I had a little bit of technical knowledge and form but I never really "enjoyed" the music I was playing.

I played drums in grade school. While in drumline (marching band), another drummer asked me to play some keyboard parts for his band. Like 3-4 chords during a Pink Floyd song ("Wish You Were Here" actually, you can hear the synth towards the latter part of the song), and some bird chirping sounds. For other songs, I would swing a hockey stick around while wearing a hooded coat (kinda like a grim reaper) while the band played some Black Sabbath covers.

Well it turns out that we won a Battle of the Bands in front of a few hundred high schoolers, got some money, and I had my young ego blown up then, going from unknown nerd to "piano player with the hockey stick" - but at least people knew who I was. I even bought a keyboard so we could gig around town (I still have it, this ridiculous thing, even though the screen doesn't work anymore)

As I practiced with the band, I was introduced to the idea of "soloing" - other classically trained musicians might understand the helpless feeling I had when I was told "just jam over this blues" - I had no idea what I was doing. One of the guitarists in my band told me about the blues scale, a set of 6 notes that I could riff endlessly over and somehow they all sounded great to me.

A year later (and another battle of the bands won), I was invited by the same guitarist to hear one of his friend's dad's jazz trio. I was told his dad, a drummer, had once opened a concert for Parliament. I get to hear this trio, and they are playing Miles Davis' "So What" according to my friend. I'm ask my friend, "How are they playing all that, improvising?" And he says "Yeah"

At this point I'm like, "Well let me jump in there, I know the blues scale!" And my friend is like "Nah dude, you can't do that!"

Later that night he plays me this recording of Thelonious Monk "Epistrophy" and is like "this is jazz, man, you can't just play blues scale over it"

My classical ears heard this song and I thought to myself, "This is some bullshit music. Sounds terrible. This guy sold records? I can do this!"

I went home and realized quickly that I had no idea how to actually play "randomly" - my fingers would not allow me to. I needed some sort of direction, short of just riffing up and down the blues scale.

The internet was starting to become a thing at this point, so I jumped online and looked up how to improvise jazz on a hip new search engine called "Google" (lol). With a little digging and the help of Napster, I ended up finding an mp3 of Keith Jarrett "The Koln Concert Part IIc"

I listened to that shit so many times. How could someone just sit down and PLAY that?

The summer after my senior year, I used two websites (Jazz Improvisation Primer and and Mark Levine's Jazz Piano Book to learn about jazz and how to improvise. I spent 4-5 hours a day going through the book, listening to music from the websites, reading about music theory, and practicing on my parents' upright.

When I went to undergrad, I sold my drum set and brought the keyboard along. Really glad I chose that path.

On campus, I found other jazz musicians and tried to hang out with them whenever I could; even though I wasn't a music student, I lived in a dorm really close to the music department, and my classes were also relatively close. I ended up going to my first jam sessions my freshman year, and while I struggled to keep up (I was literally pushed off a piano bench once), I found a few kind souls who were willing to be patient with me and let me play with them. Many of them are doing great musically/career-wise now, and my heart warms up SO much whenever I think about them

Anyways, I transcribed solos, played off lead sheets, and listened to jazz all the time that year, trying to practice an hour or two every day or at least every other day. The first tune I ever completely transcribed was Cannonball Adderley "Autumn Leaves" and it took at least half a year, I probably spent a month alone on the first 4 bars of Cannonball's solo

I don't know exactly when it happened, but my girlfriend at the time was really into Prince/Michael Jackson and the summer of my junior year, during an internship in California, I somehow found myself watching the Britney Spears' "Toxic" music video and figuring out how to play it on piano. Sure it was "pop crap" but something about the little string riff caught my attention. That summer I started learning a ton of radio songs and I realized that I could use my jazz transcribing skills to learn almost any rock/pop tune, since the basic harmonies/melodies were generally much simpler than dealing with something like the changes to Coltrane's "Moment's Notice".

I filled up ~200 notebook pages of chord changes and reharmonziations of pop/rock/musical/video game songs I had grown up with, thinking to myself, "Isn't this what all those bebop heads did in the 40s? Take their favorite childhood tunes and turn them inside out?" Around this time, I started playing solo piano gigs, quoting these familiar tunes occasionally, enough to grab an audience, but keeping the whole "cool jazz" feel to them.

When I came back to school I started playing around town a lot, and by the end of undergrad, I finally felt like I could sit down and just play how I felt. I can't pinpoint exactly when this happened, but it was a big turning point in my musical life. I had a friend record me at the on-campus music studios, which became my first album. I decided that I would go "on tour" around the country, playing at venues in college towns/big cities, partly to prove to myself that I could make it as a musician, partly because road trips!!!!!

I could write a book about those 4 months but basically at the end of it all, I had played in ~50 cities, smoked a ton of weed, realized I could "keep up" w/some of the best jazz musicians (playing in New Orleans, LA, and NYC for a week each), and was broke as shit. The money thing scared me. I grew up what I considered to be middle class, but I couldn't stomach having $20 in my bank account with no paycheck in sight. As a musician, playing jazz, I realized how difficult it would be to live comfortably.

At the same time, I knew where I wanted to settle down. I moved 2000 miles, took a corporate day job near San Francisco, and was incredibly lucky to find relatively affordable housing out here (prices were high a decade ago but not as bad as they are now, I think).

Most "new" stuff in my life from that point on (in terms of music) didn't really specifically deal with jazz, although I did play a lot of jazz gigs both solo and with a quartet (clarinet+rhythm section) over the next few years. Got into lots of other kinds of music, started DJing a bit, saved up money from my day job to find other musicians gigs/avenues to play, eventually got into electronic dance music, raves, music production, but anyways. There's a somewhat related post about that here

I stream improvisational piano on Twitch occasionally, and there are definitely touches of jazz, although I would never compare myself favorably to anyone who practices and studies jazz consistently. Over the last 5-6 years, not playing with other jazz musicians has kind of dulled my chops, plus I don't really practice that way anymore anyways... but I'm quite OK with that. I still love sitting down and just playing how I feel, and it's kind of cool in this modern age that people all around the world can listen and enjoy it if they want - good for the ego heh ; )

Music is fucking great. Keep listening, keep playing : )

u/Zytran · 5 pointsr/Guitar

In my opinion Troy Stetina's Fretboard Mastery is still the most comprehensive, well thought out and explained, and easy to understand guitar theory book. If you could only get one book, this book would cover all you need to understand the instrument.

Beyond that Troy's Speed Mechanics for Lead Guitar is very good book of technique building exercises, Dave Celentano's Monster Scales and Modes is a short, easy to read, and good book for referencing some of the most commonly used scales and modes, it also has some short but good description of when and where to use certain scales/modes.

For a more reference/appendix use, I like the Guitar Grimoire books as they have very complete information and are laid out in a fairly easy to read and easy to understand fashion.

u/Gefiltefish1 · 5 pointsr/Bass

There are two ways you could go about this:

Way one: grab a comprehensive reference like The Bass Grimoire. Matching scales to chords turns out to be a vast database.

Way two: Learn some basic music theory regarding chord construction, inversions, and substitutions. This applies across keys and once you know it you can match a scale to a chord on the fly.

u/PotatoJo · 5 pointsr/piano

For anyone interested in Early Jazz/Stride piano I consider Ferdinand "Jelly Roll" Morton Collected Piano Works by Dapogny to be a must have.

It's more than just a collection of his pieces, but rather includes a brief history and musical analyses of each piece. The songs have their structures marked in the sheets and a number of footnotes point to further description of the passage or note. There are often times entire verses that have an alternate version that Jelly Roll soloed that are transcribed here indicated as such.

u/gillyguthrie · 5 pointsr/piano

Well, yeah, if you want to be satisfied with your performance you'll have to dedicate yourself somewhat. But let it not be underestimated the insight gained from listening to the piece - ideas for the song will be gleaned there that were not contained within the notation itself.

*So as far as exercises go, well, I've spend plenty of time running scales and methodical etudes which contribute significantly to well-rounded technique. However, there's so much to learn you really should pick a song that sounds enjoyable to you and one that you would feel satisfied after learning to play. After learning a couple Joplin rags I heard Morton playing and thought, "now that sounds great, I wish I could sound like that" and found a great book with 40 transcriptions of Morton piano solos. I would say pick a artist you would feel accomplished after emulating and find transcriptions for their pieces, this is usually a pretty effective way to at least get started.

u/Senor_Suenos · 5 pointsr/EDC

Top Left - Right:

Dakine Backpack 25L - Bought for $17 two years ago. Hasn't shown its age at all.

Chicago Cubs Floral Hat - I have fro-like hair, it keeps it down.

ZtuntZ Longboard - For getting around campus.

Bluetooth Headphones - They're not very good. I used a Best Buy gift card for them, so they do the job.

Collapsable Umbrella - Lightweight and easy to fit.

Hanes Black Socks - I wear sandals most of the time, so a dry pair of socks is good to have on hand.

Mittens - My dad bought them for me last Christmas. He said a pianist's hands shouldn't be numb when he goes to practice.

Organ Shoes - These have leather soles so that they don't dirty the pedalboard at the bottom.

AmazonBasics Laptop Case - Rough, and I don't like to use it, but I dropped my laptop so I'm being more careful.

MacBook Air - Does the job well. OK battery.

Middle Left - Right:

Starbucks 16oz Travel Mug - I worked at Sbux and got this at a discount. I'm trying to be less wasteful, so instead of buying packs of waters, I just refill it at school and work.

Mead Five Star Journal - Small notebook I use to document my practice times and what I worked on.

Korg Tuner - I don't need a tuner but someone might, so I like to keep it on hand.

Music - IMSLP printed, Beethoven Urtext and Hanon exercises for Piano.

Hal Leonard Manuscript Journal - Amazon Prime available and cheap. Worth it.

Vandoren Classical A. Sax Reeds
Miraphone Tuba Mouthpiece - I keep these for distractions. I work on buzzing and breaths.
Giddings and Webster Trombone Mouthpiece

Protec Tuba Mouthpiece Case - Fits 2

Bach Orgelbuchlein - Organ Music

The Sea Wolf - When I want to relax, I'll make sure I have a good book on hand.

Bottom Left - Right:

Herschel Wallet - I keep $20 in astd. bills just in case.

Generic Binoculars - Useful for bird watching.

Eagle Scout Card - I'm pretty proud of it and carry it on me at all times.

Anker Charger for Nexus - My original charger gave out and I decided to try this. It's a rapid charger. Not much else.

Bic Lighters

Gerber Paraframe 3in. Knife

Garrity Flashlight

3DS XL Pokemon XY Edi. and charger - My job lets us take small electronics so it's my go-to

Star Wars Vader USB

2 Band-Aids

Burts Bees Chapstick

2 Trojan Condoms

2 Leigas

2 Bobby Pins

Hex Key Set - My bike's handlebars need constant tightening, so I just keep all of them together

Emergency Poncho

Star Wars R2-D2 Pouch

Pencils and Pens

Bar Key - I don't work as a bartender anymore, but I carry it because of habit.

Chicago Blackhawks Lanyard - Has Smith & Wesson handcuff key, keys to the organ recital hall, my apartment and my mailbox.

u/tagjim · 5 pointsr/videos

Any drummer worth his salt has learnt from Master Studies by Joe Morello

u/Jongtr · 5 pointsr/musictheory

[This] ( is the classic original - updated to remove (most of) the mistakes (mostly trivial in the first place), and now licensed so no longer illegal. This was the bible of all amateur jazz musicians from the late 1970s to 90s (at least).

The [New Real Book] ( is better-looking, with a slightly different selection of tunes. Originally published as a legal version of the old Real Book (which had been an underground publication).

There are now many volumes, so the best thing is to consult the list of tunes in each one and count how many you recognise. ;-)

u/ProgHog231 · 5 pointsr/Bass

> I can read tablature but not music notation (I'm assuming this is the first step!)

Standard notation is important - and definitely learn it. But as important, or maybe more so, is being able to understand chords and progressions.

Here's a really simple lesson: to illustrate how to get started. Scott's Bass Lessons has a lot more content, too. Christian McBride also has an online fundamentals course:

To apply even a basic knowledge, I'd recommend getting one or more real books. The app, iRealPro is a digital version of this approach and has some nice features like being able to change key and tempo. At its heart, jazz is a performance and improvisational art, and these resources let you build up those playing skills.

u/Bebop_Ba-Bailey · 5 pointsr/piano

It's hard to find stuff on Jazz Theory on Google for sure, much less recommendations for music transcription. I really can't think of a good place to start with regards to the songs you should try to transcribe, but there are books I've used that have plenty of suggested reading/listening listed. Hopefully you don't already know about these...

The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine (it can be kind of pricy, here's a link to it on Amazon) which has a whole regimen of listening suggestions in its curriculum, focusing a good amount on jazz harmony, and melodic improvisation.

I learned a lot about jazz chords and voicings from Miracle Voicings by Frank Mantooth. Working through these books will help you understand better how to approach jazz chords, which should help you better conceive of what you're hearing when you try to transcribe them.

EDIT: The book has been republished as Voicings for Jazz Keyboard by Frank Mantooth

u/tmwrnj · 5 pointsr/Jazz

>I was wondering if having a classical background was something necessary in learning to play jazz

No, not in the slightest. Your classical background is helpful, but jazz is a very different musical form with very different theory and technique. Most of the greatest jazz players had no classical training whatsoever.

I recommend The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine. It was written for experienced classical pianists who are switching over to jazz.

u/bringy · 5 pointsr/piano

As others are saying, I think you're going to be hard-pressed to put together a solid audition in six weeks if you don't have any jazz experience. But you've got four years, right? There's no reason you can't go out your sophomore year. If you really want to get into jazz piano, I recommend checking out Mark Levine's Jazz Piano Book. Each chapter represents months, if not more, of practice, but you'll have a very strong foundation to build on if you keep with it.

I think going out for choir would actually be a great idea. Singing in harmony with others is one of the most satisfying musical experiences you can have, and it's GREAT ear training. Plus, there's no reason you can't continue playing solo repertoire, right? If you hang out in the music department a bunch, you might even be able to pop in on jam sessions or start a band with some like-minded musicians. Not to mention what's out there if your school is near a major metropolitan area.

u/bigfunky · 5 pointsr/Jazz

IMO, you can't really start tackling theory and go straight to jazz, you really need to understand the basics of music theory before you can move on to advanced jazz harmony. There are a number of theory books our there that explain the basics well, I have a couple of music degrees and a good overall text used in many schools is Tonal Harmony. As far as jazz the best book I've come across in regards to explaining harmony is Mark Levine's The Jazz Piano Book.

Both of these are pretty involved books, they might be a bit much for the casual player. But they are the best I know of.

u/and_of_four · 5 pointsr/piano

Check out The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine.

Jazz is less about learning pieces and more about knowing your theory and being able to improvise. Can you play a 12 bar blues? You can use simple voicings in your left hand using the 3rd and 7th of each chord and use your right hand to improvise. Or you can practice walking a bassline in your left hand while playing chords with your right hand.

I'm not a jazz musician, but I know some jazz theory and can play a little bit, it's not my thing though. Hopefully some jazz pianists will post here with more helpful advice.

u/terrapin1203 · 5 pointsr/Jazz

Mark Levine's Jazz Piano Book is considered the standard jazz piano book. Between that and a good teacher you should be set.

u/o0gader0o · 5 pointsr/FrankOcean

Channel Orange Book

Yellow shirt was the CO Tour, Vinyl was from the lady off discogs I think. Ill have to check on the due date shirt though.

u/Facu474 · 5 pointsr/BABYMETAL

It's on the Official Band score for the BABYMETAL album, they sell it on ASmart, CDJapan, or

Here it is shown in a video

And it's also included on the Official Live Band Score: on ASmart, CDJapan, and on

And for good measure, this is the Metal Resistance one: ASmart, CDJapan,

u/jetpacksforall · 4 pointsr/Bass

One important thing is to relax, and especially relax your fretting hand. If you've got the strings in a death claw, it's going to sound bad and you might eventually wind up with carpal tunnel.

Instead of trying to do hammer-ons right away, force yourself to go back to fundamentals. Set the metronome (you must have a metronome) to 40 beats per minute and play one finger per fret. Your fingers should fall immediately behind each fret. Whole notes, half notes, quarters, eighths triplets and 16ths...make sure you're playing in time with the clicks. Try to relax completely and use only the minimum amount of pressure it takes to sound each note without buzzing. The idea behind this exercise is to teach your muscle memory the exact amount of pressure you need to play a given note. Forcing yourself to play slow will give your muscles time to readjust in order to sound the notes accurately. Your fingers, wrists, body posture, etc. should be completely relaxed and comfortable throughout. If you start tensing up or feel pain or burning in your fingers, make yourself relax and loosen up.

Couple other popular hand exercises.

  1. The Soft Touch. Play exactly as above, only leave your fingers on the frets until each finger is ready to move up to the next string. Example: you play index A on the E string, middle finger A#, ring finger B, pinkie B#, keeping each finger in fret position. Now leaving your mf, ring and pinkie down on those frets, pick up your index and move it to D on the A string. Then pick up your mf and move it to play D#, ring to E, pinkie to F and hold. Then continue up the D and G strings the same way. It might help to start higher up on the neck, like C on the E string. Throughout this exercise, the most important thing is that you relax your hand. There should be no pain, no strain, no bizarre wrist angles. Just smooth, slow, relaxed and locked in to the 40 bpm pulse.

  2. The Spider. Purpose of this exercise is to learn independent control of index/ring fingers and middle/pinkie fingers. Play A on the E string with your index, then E on the A string with your ring finger. Then A# on the E with your middle, followed by F on the A string with your pinkie. Then switch up and hit B on the E string with your ring finger, followed by D on the A string with your index, then B# on the E with the pinkie and D# on the A with the middle. Alternating 1-3, 2-4 fingers the whole time. Practice that until it's comfortable (could take a few days), then play the same pattern skipping up to the D string, and finally all the way to the G string. The full spider pattern is played E string to A string, then E string to D string, then E string to G string, then back down E to D, finally back to E to A.

    For books, there's a big difference between a good one and a bad one. I can personally recommend Serious Electric Bass, Bass Logic, Bass Grooves, and Standing in the Shadows of Motown (this last book is less of a beginner's guide and more of a project you could spend a lifetime on: i.e. learning from the great James Jamerson). Also highly recommended is Ed Friedland's Building Walking Bass Lines. I also have and recommend The Bass Grimoire, but it is more a reference book for advanced scale and chord building, as opposed to a beginner's guide. Bass Guitar for Dummies is actually pretty good and comprehensive.

    And there are some good online resources as well: is great and starts from a beginner level. Scott Devine is an amazing teacher especially with more advanced techniques, but also for fundamentals. Paul from How To Play Bass Dot Com just steps you through a bunch of popular rock & r&b tunes...not bad for picking up new songs, but it's far better to learn the theory & structure behind a song than just memorizing the finger patterns. MarloweDK is a great player with hundreds of videos, but he's highly advanced.

    Finally, has some great ear training exercises you can do any time, in addition to a wealth of info about basic theory that applies to all instruments.
u/MMA_bastard · 4 pointsr/jazzguitar

Alright, my last two comments on this sub were downvoted, so I'm going to give it one more shot.

One of the mainstays of jazz since the early days has been common repertoire, the songs that have come to be known as "standards." If you resurrected Louis Armstrong from the grave you could take him to a session anywhere in the world and he'd find common tunes to play with the jazz musicians there. I'm going to guess that a big part of what you're not getting about jazz is you have little or no familiarity with these songs, so learning them, even just as a listener, is going to be one of your main jobs right now. I posted a video the other day called Aimee's Top 25 Jazz Standards To Know that is as good a list as any to start with. I used Nat King Cole's vocal recordings to introduce my daughter to some of these when she was five, because Nat sticks with the melody but still has a jazz delivery. Frank Sinatra is another good source, because he recorded just about every damn standard that is a vocal tune and did it with great jazz musicians. Obviously there are a zillion great instrumental versions of these tunes as well. A good place to look for the songs' histories and seminal recordings is

One resource that you really should purchase to help you get up to speed on standards is a good, legit fakebook. The most common one is called The Real Book, and I advise getting a hard copy. I actually prefer the Chuck Sher New Real Book and its sequels, but either it or the Hal Leonard RB will get you started. If I'm not mistaken all of the tunes on Aimee's list (25 standards) are in the HLRB.

Next you should select a song from the fakebook, an easy one such as Blue Bossa or Satin Doll, and learn it all the way down, soup to nuts. This means you should know the written melody and chord changes cold. If you don't know some of the chords get a chord encyclopedia and learn them (I used books such as the Mickey Baker's How To Play Jazz and Hot Guitar, The Joe Pass Guitar Style, Ted Greene's Chord Chemistry and other to learn what Howard Roberts called "garden variety jazz guitar chords.") Be able to strum the chords to whatever tune(s) you pick in quarter notes in every bar, and you can apply comping rhythms later. There's an app for the Android and iPhone called the iReal pro that plays backing tracks to practice to, and they have a forum where you can download a playlist of 1,300 jazz tunes. It's well worth the $14 or so.

One main reason I'm starting with telling you to learn songs right away is literally everything else - chords, scales, arpeggios, lines, substitutions, rhythmic concepts, and so on - can be applied to tunes. Learning tunes enables you to play with other people, and as you get better you can find work backing singers and horn players, playing in guitar-bass-drum trios, and playing solo guitar if you're learning the songs as chord melodies. Believe me when I tell you almost every jazz musician you can name went through this process of learning and studying standards.

Last, one element of becoming a competent jazz player is rhythm. A lot of the rhythmic vocabulary is acquired naturally by listening, but if you're serious about learning this art form you'll want to study rhythm as well. Over the years I've used a number of books designed to improve reading as tools to help improve my time, including Melodic Rhythms for Guitar, Louis Bellson's rhythm reading books, and most recently Gary Hess's Encyclopedia of Reading Rhythms. These won't necessarily help as far as developing a jazz "feel," but it's mandatory to be comfortable with all the basic units of time so you can have a solid rhythmic base to improvise and interact with other musicians.

I hope this helps, and I'm up for questions about anything else.

u/greensome · 4 pointsr/musictheory

I can highly recommend "The Jazz Piano Book". It covers a lot of ground and is very readable. Best jazz book I ever bought.

u/ghost_of_a_fly · 4 pointsr/piano

The Mark Levine Jazz piano book has been known to be a good one. I"m just starting too and i had the jazz instructor at my university recommend it. here's an amazon link.

u/cochman · 4 pointsr/firefly

Found it! on

Here is a pdf download of the entire book.

edit: added download link

u/agentjayjay · 4 pointsr/IAmA

A few quick questions?

  1. Will the sheet music for Kara Remembers be available? Awesome tune by the way.
    EDIT: It's here, derp:

  2. What tools do you use? And if someone wanted to get started on the cheap, would you recommend Linux audio software/hardware (assuming you've tried it)?

  3. Have you jammed with Zimmer, Newton-Howard, Williams, Jablonsky, any of those guys? If not, what kind of project would it take to make it so?

  4. More technical: For the dark haunting pulsing beat in the soundtrack in the later episodes of the Walking Dead, how did you make it?

  5. Concert in Houston? And can you sign MP3s? lol (though it might be possible as a pgp message in the comments section in the id3 tags...)

u/MDShimazu · 3 pointsr/musictheory

If you would like to end with Chopin, you only need to study tonal theory. So twelve tone topics are not of any use since that topic is 20th century, after tonality.

If you didn't do voice leading (SATB harmony): Are you interested in voice leading? If you want to get to the more advanced topics of tonal theory, you'll need to cover that. If so I would suggest this book:

Have you done species counterpoint? Species counterpoint will be very helpful in dealing with just about all music. I would recommend Fux's book:

If you've already done species counterpoint: For more advanced counterpoint (not useful for Chopin, but necessary for anything with fugues in it, obviously) I would suggest Mann's book:

For a complete discussion of forms I would suggest Berry's book:

For an in depth and modern discussion of sonata theory (remember that symphonies are also often times in sonata form), I would suggest Hepokoski's book:

If you already know species counterpoint and voice leading you can study Schenkarian Analysis. For this there's two books I would suggest:


If you're interested in composition, that's the other side of the coin and so all the above are of limited use. Let me know if you want books for composition.

u/helpinghat · 3 pointsr/Guitar

Speed Mechanics for Lead Guitar by Troy Stetina

u/rcochrane · 3 pointsr/guitarlessons

Troy Stetina's book is a well-respected approach to developing rock lead technique:

Probably not your style of music (mine neither) but I would definitely check out the free material on Tom Hess's site too, he has excellent advice in there and his chops are undeniable:

Other than that, if you have a couple of months, I suggest picking one technical thing (e.g. alternate picking) and one vocabulary/learning thing (e.g. a scale) and staying focussed. I've spent too much of my time in the past switching between things that seemed interesting but not persevering with anything long enough to really master it.

I'm others will pitch in with good books / DVDs etc...

u/belsambar · 3 pointsr/piano

If you're going to print it you might as well just buy a published version, the pages will be larger and better quality and easier to read, it's on Amazon for $3.99:

u/Klairvoyant · 3 pointsr/piano

First what you want to do is probably get a decent book of beginner songs and just work your way through them.

The piano literature series is popular, but I personally have not used them. I know volume 2 has a bunch of popular songs like Sonatina that everyone plays.

Burgmuller is also very popular among intermediate beginners.

You probably also want to get Hanon because everyone uses it for warm ups no matter what level, and it has all the scales.

And you might want Czerny, which are really short decent sounding pieces that people use for warmups.

These few books will get you started. Just start working through the books. Work on something from all three or four books.

Just a note. You'll probably be very enthusiastic in the beginning and get really bored before you reach your third month. You need to persist if you want to get good. I personally did not enjoy playing piano until I got pretty good and was able to play the more virtuoso piano pieces.

u/gibsonES300 · 3 pointsr/Guitar

Are you looking for just a good chord chart for the tune? That one was mediocre. I can give you a more accurate chart, no problem.

Or, are you looking for an EXACT transcription of what Les played on the Bing recording? I could make that as well, but honestly, I usually charge people (guitar students) to do it.

Aside from very popular recordings, most chord charts and TABs online are highly inaccurate. Often the "official" transcriptions you see in books aren't right either. I'm a huge Les Paul fan, particularly the pre-multitracking era (Les Paul Trio, this Bing session, etc). I've seen him play live a few times as well. Congratulations, you have good taste!

If you'd like to advance your skills in trad/swing/jazz rhythm guitar to get the skills to play through the chart, check out these books:

Give me a few minutes and I'll post a chart.

u/funky_old_dude · 3 pointsr/jazzguitar

Hey, OP. Here's a video series on the chords from a book many of the jazz guitarists from my generation and earlier started with, Mickey Baker's Complete Course in Jazz Guitar: Book 1. This will get you playing a good many of the common "jazz guitar" chords you'll need to play in a big band or small group setting.

u/lukewashisname · 3 pointsr/Guitar

Mickey Bakers Complete Course in Jazz Guitar

While the book is labelled as a jazz guitar resource, really what you're getting is a set of really good lessons which will instill a lot of habits that strong playing skills are based on. I must warn you though; the lessons can be tedious (he makes you transpose a lot) but they're very effective if you follow through with them.

u/SomedayVirtuoso · 3 pointsr/Guitar


Chord Chemistry - Ted Greene

The Advancing Guitarist - Mick Goodrick

Mickey Baker's Complete Course in Jazz Guitar: Book 1

Also, remember that 85% of odd jazz chords that come about, you should be able to work out. -Maj7? Min7 chord with a sharp 7. 7b5? 7 chord with a flat five. Chords with tensions can generally be played without the tensions, so G13 can easily be G7. However, you will loose some nuance. As for jazz solos? Totally not a jazz guitarist. My rock soloing didn't go well with my jazz teachers. However, I was given some fantastic advice: Even if you don't play a style, solo in it like you would normally because that is where you are comfortable. If you find the groove, you'll fit.

u/I_Am_Okonkwo · 3 pointsr/Bass

Technique:, hell, he JUST made a technique video

Theory/reading music: and note: he uses British terms for notes (what Americans call a 16th note, they call a semi quaver)

Scales: . You need to know Major and minor in "zombie mode". To the point where you don't think about where the notes are, you just play them. Not saying it happens overnight, but those scales are 98%+ of what modern music uses.

This has every scale you'll ever need...and more. It has scales that are super esoteric but can be useful (one of my favorite lines I made has a F Hirojoshi scale!)

Note: the circle of fifths is on the cover. It is crucial that you memorize it and understand what it means. Father Christmas Got Dad An Electric Blanket. Blanket Exploded And Dad Got Charred Feet. Once you see the circle, you'll understand what these devices are referring to.

u/foundring · 3 pointsr/piano

Most can find one version in this book: Ferdinand 'Jelly Roll' Morton: The Collected Piano Music

Totally worth the money, it's a superb resource.

u/shcwaig · 3 pointsr/drums

Lawrence Stone's Stick Control & Master Studies by Joe Morello

Great books to utilize while simultaneously working your sheet music skills. Good luck

u/Poes_Law_in_Action · 3 pointsr/Learnmusic

A fake book is just a book of lead sheets. A lead sheet is the chords and melody of a song with usually little else. They're called fake books because they can be used to fake a tune one does't really know. By and large, the most popular jazz fake book is called the Real Book. There are 3 volumes and 5 editions; it was produced by students at Berklee School of Music in the 70's. That jazz style that is so often in music notation software is based on the Real book's handwritten sheets. It's illegal as the songs are unlicensed, but Hal Leonard has created a 6th edition that is updated and fully licensed. You can get it at amazon. You can find versions of the original at your local seedy music store and online with a bit of searching. There are a whole bunch of others. One really excellent one is the New Real Book published by Sher. The tunes are dead accurate and contain most of the arrangements.

u/Broomoid · 3 pointsr/Bass

I'd probably suggest this one, or maybe this one

In terms of walking bass, the only to get better at it is unfortunately just to keep working at it. Start on a not-too-complicated tune such as Satin Doll, or something else with lots of II-V-I progressions in it, or a 12-bar blues, and work up to more complicated charts.

Here's a "quick and dirty" method to work out some walking bass lines. It's a bit simplistic perhaps, but it will at least get you started, and it does work. Assuming a 4/4 time sig:


Beats 1 & 3: On the beats where the chords fall (1 & 3) play the root (at least at first).
Beats 2 & 4: On the other beats (2 & 4) play an approach note that gets you to the root of the next chord, so a note either a half-step or whole step above the note you want to get to. Use your ear to judge which is best. So if the chord on beat 3 is G7, on beat 2 you could play either A, Ab, F# or F.


Beat 1: Play the root (again, at first)
Beat 4: Play an approach note as above, so either a half or whole step above or below, whichever sounds best.
Beats 2 & 3: You have a few options:

a. outline the chord notes. For example root, 3, 5 then, or root, 3, 5 then to your approach note.

b. move by step (don't be afraid of chromatic notes, you'd be surprised how often they work). So going from Dmi7 to G7 you could move up be step playing D, E, F, F#.

c. Try going from the root on the first beat up or down to the 5th on the second beat, then keep going in the same direction to the root an octave above or below on the third, before hitting your approach notes.

d. Do something else entirely.

So a sample bassline for the first 8 bars of Satin Doll might look something like this. Note that in the last bar it moves completely by step while in the three bars before that it uses that root-fifth-root pattern. Obviously that's just one way to do it. When you're new to walking bass and learning a tune don't try and go right through straight away. Get from bar 1 to bar 2, then from 1 to 4, and so on. Build it up in stages, and try different ways to get there. If you can figure out how to get up by step to the next chord, then try moving down by step the next time.

Now, before anyone tells me that I am the awful spawn of satan and I have killed Jazz by explaining things this way and thus downvoting me to the diminished 7th circle of Hell, I know it's a very simple way of explaining it, I also know that walking bass can be a wonderfully nuanced thing with infinite variety. But we've got to start somewhere and the above will work. As with everything, the ear has to be the final judge.

u/danw1989 · 3 pointsr/Jazz

Classical pianist for 15 years, and I'm going on 3 years as a self-taught jazz pianist. I can honestly say that the book I have used the most is The Jazz Piano Book. Learning modes, memorizing the circle of 5ths, 3-note voicings, left hand voicings (a la Bill Evans and others) are all things included in the book. It will teach you how to interpret lead sheets, taking basic "scale/chord" theory knowledge and applying it to improvisation, and it also will teach you a variety of tricks used by the professionals. Mark Levine, the author, writes in a cohesive, down-to-earth voice (although sometimes a little corny), and it makes it really easy to understand what he's talking about. Other books you may want to look into are A Creative Approach to Jazz Piano Harmony, A Classical Approach To Jazz Piano, and of course, LISTEN TO GREAT PLAYERS! There's a saying in jazz - probably the most true of them all - the textbooks are the records!

Hope this helps get you started.
Remember, knowing the fundamentals is the key to learning the complexities of jazz. Seriously, I can't stress this enough. Always pay attention to your technique, and always play with the best possible sound. And more than anything - enjoy the process of learning. Have fun!


u/AperionProject · 3 pointsr/WeAreTheMusicMakers

A few key things will help you:

Practice everyday, at least 30 minutes. Most of us can't afford the time to practice hours and hours a day, but 30 minutes consistently is necessary.

Get a piano teacher to work on improvisation with. This is THE best way to develop yourself.

Although I'm a big proponent of improvisation NOT being exlcusive to jazz (I think a musican should be able to improvise regardless of instrument or genre) there is an excellent book for piano you should definitely have: The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine

Make sure you know all your scales very, very well. Every type of scale - major, minor, modes, diminshed scales, etc. And practice improvising around the circle of 4ths (or 5ths) with a metronome on beats 2 & 4. This will help your rhythm and everything out a great deal.

u/brooklynperson · 3 pointsr/piano

When I was in college, I took jazz piano lessons on the side as an extra elective, even though classical was my main focus for my major. Also, I played in a few different jazz bands on campus, which really helped me to learn. I know your goal is to play solo, but it's much easier when you are starting out to play with a band who can keep time, a bassline, and the chord changes going for you while you ease in.

I've found it hard to learn on my own, and learned more from playing with others, but this book (The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine) is a great resource to start to wrap your mind around the approach.

u/Archaeoptero · 3 pointsr/edmproduction

Sounds like the problem isn't music theory, but applying it to composition.

I can recommend two things. First of all, you have to spend A LOT of time noodling around on an instrument. I'm sorry to say, but while the push may be useful for its purpose, it will not train you to recognize and spontaneously create melodic elements that deviate from simple chord progressions and leads. I learned on a piano, and I spent hours a week just jamming and noodling around to see what worked, what didn't, and how to add different elements like passing chords, dissonance, counterpoint, bass composition, modal improvisation, and so forth. This is just stuff that you naturally pick up after practicing a while. Try something new here and there, and you may find that it works quite nicely.

The second is to study the music of other composers. For this, I can't think of anything better than jazz. Classical music can help too, but it gets a bit more complicated and doesn't apply well to electronic music. Jazz is modern and simple enough to study, but can be musically complex (using those things like passing chords, modes, etc). It teaches one to get out of comfortable poppy chord progressions and melodies.

You might want to try this book I've heard good things about it.

u/fenderfreak98 · 3 pointsr/piano

well I'm not so sure about specific genres, but if you want to get into Jazz piano then The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine is a great place to start. That along with a fake book, backing tracks (like the ireal app), and actual recordings will get you far. Also, check out r/jazztheory/ if you haven't been there yet.

edit: for what its worth, in my limited opinion bossa nova is more of a rhythmic variant and gospel is more about voicings and specific progressions (I'm not too familiar w/ gospel but do hear minor thirds and block chords alot)

u/ztpiano · 3 pointsr/piano

get this:

and a copy of The Real Book.

The Mark Levine book will tell you which songs to practice and how to practice them. If you really want to learn jazz, don't simply imitate it by learning pre-written arrangements on sheet music. Learn to play from a lead sheet and you will have much more fun.

u/MONGEN_beats · 3 pointsr/LofiHipHop

This book is a great resource for jazz theory and piano chords.

u/lemkepf · 3 pointsr/firefly

I got the piano book off amazon and it's pretty awesome!

u/TheAethereal · 3 pointsr/guitarlessons

I bet you'd like this book. It has Romanza in it, and a bunch of other Spanish pieces. I'm not sure any of the pieces would be described as "romantic", but then that is really an aesthetic judgement I'm not qualified to make. Maybe you'd like some of the tangos. There are other iconic pieces like Lagrima and Malaguenia. One of the first books I bought and still my favorite by far.

u/UnbentReagent · 3 pointsr/trumpet

The Arban's book really is the gold standard for trumpet playing. If you're a beginner I would focus on the first 10-15 exercises in "First Studies" and the first 5-10 exercises in "Slurring and Legato Playing." If you practice that consistently and correctly (as the book tells you to) then that will help you tremendously with creating a good solid tone. Move on to other exercises in the book when you're comfortable with those first exercises.

Another book you could use is called Advanced Flexibilities for Trumpet. This may seem like a bit much, but if you work on just the first couple of exercises, they can do wonders to your lip muscles and help you get a large, flexible range. Some of the best warm-ups are in this book.

u/MeatFarmer · 2 pointsr/rocksmith

Right. Okay so this is one of the books that I used...Speed Mechanics for Lead Guitar and it talks about learning 'phrases.' So like...break the song down into different pieces/parts...whether that be verse/chorus or whatever...and then practice those different phrases. Rocksmith 2014 does this with 'riff repeater.' I've used that quite a bit to perfect different pieces in a slow, controlled way. Good luck and please let me know if you have any other questions!!!

u/aeropagitica · 2 pointsr/Guitar
u/kronak09 · 2 pointsr/piano

Buy a Hanon book.

If you've been playing a good bit, get the original.

If you're really just getting started, consider getting the junior book. Most of the exercises serve the same purpose, the notation is just a bit easier to read.

Each exercise is a little different, and focuses on different skills and techniques that will help you boost finger strength and dexterity.

u/itgoestoeleven · 2 pointsr/Guitar

I'd also highly recommend picking up this book. I'm largely self-taught on guitar, and this text is an incredible resource.

u/joe_ally · 2 pointsr/guitarlessons

Learn Jazz Guitar theory. Then start to learn some of the Jazz standards.

After playing Jazz guitar at a somewhat novice level for a few years I have decided to study this book. Apparently this is the book.

u/Ferniff · 2 pointsr/Bass

I have a habit of buying music books but then never really using them. What did you like about that book, pros and cons? How'd it help you?

I would also recommend the Bass Grimoire if you want scales, scales and nothing but scales.

u/coltsmyth · 2 pointsr/Bass

This book will have everything you need. I’m serious. It’s complete.

Bass Grimoire

u/2001spaceoddessy · 2 pointsr/piano

I bought the Jelly Roll Morton Collection a while back, and while it's not a theory book, there was always some sort of a foreword that broke down the piece which helped me to understand the 'basics'.

The majority of his pieces are late ragtime/early jazz, BUT, there's some amazing pieces that are written in a style that he calls, the 'Spanish tinge'; this amazing man describes it here in detail.

PS: all of his pieces are hard as hell.

u/stevewheelermusic · 2 pointsr/WeAreTheMusicMakers

I've been a drummer since I was 8. Quite rusty right now as a lot of things have kept me from practicing (moving to apartments for years, etc.). Honestly, it's never too late to start. Are you going to be playing Carnegie Hall in a year? Wildly unlikely. But as long as your expectations are grounded in reality, that learning anything takes time and practice, you should be good.

As for practice and sense of tempo/timing: it is imperative that you buy a good metronome and practice with it regularly. You don't necessarily need a Dr. Beat, though I have one, and it is useful at times. But you do need some kind of click to play off of.

Can you read music? If so, there are some really good technique books out there that I'd recommend that are classics. Most people hate grinding technique, but I find it oddly relaxing. Here's some good books:

  • Stick Control
  • Syncopation
  • Master Studies - (Do wait on this one a bit and start slow. It is possible to injure yourself if you get too carried away. Stone Killer exercises are no joke)
  • New Breed - This one's actually a full drum set book. Quite challenging. May want to wait on this one a bit or try to just play one or two of the lines together (eg. right and and right foot).

    The first two books are probably where you should start. With all of these, start the metronome at molasses level slow - like 60 bpm or maybe even slower if you're not accurate at that speed. Get comfortable with that speed - maybe 15-30 mins at that speed without any mistakes. Then bump the timing up slightly 2-4 bpm and repeat. At no point should you be tensing up. If you are, you need to stop immediately, shake out your arms, and back down the tempo a bit.

    Make sure that you're making more use of your fingers than your wrists. Wrists can be good to start the stroke, but your fingers should be doing a lot of the work.

    There's a lot of other technique stuff that you can do, but the above alone could take you 5-10 years of solid daily practice if you're being thorough.

    Good luck!
u/mattwalker_21 · 2 pointsr/drums

I'm really into independence and coordination (of which polyrhythms and polymeters often come into play) so my drumming canon is primarily composed of Gary Chester's New Breed and New Breed II.

Marco Minnemann's Extreme Interdependence is also a spectacular book. It's kind of like applying Stick Control to all of your limbs and pitting them against each other.

u/DeathDisco · 2 pointsr/drums

Pick up The New Breed by Gary Chester. It is a legendary book and all the "systems" can be done swung. I would probably reccomend this after you have a good foundation into the basics and overall style of jazz drumming. The good thing about this book is that it isn't exclusivly jazz and you will find cool tidbits that will carry over to all styles that you play.

u/dc512 · 2 pointsr/drums

And remember the 40 "systems" you can master if you study this. I studied with Gary for 5 years. it works if you do.

u/activestim · 2 pointsr/jazzguitar

I would personally buy The New Real Book by Sher Music. It's much more accurate than Hal Leonard's Real Book.

u/jfaulkner8 · 2 pointsr/WeAreTheMusicMakers

This book is fantastic for learning to play jazz:

Jazz Piano Book

u/duggreen · 2 pointsr/edmproduction

Mark Levines' book on jazz piano covers pretty much all of pop music theory.

u/jazzyjacck · 2 pointsr/musictheory

I learned a lot from taking classes and private lessons, as well as self study by reading books and analyzing music. I'm not really aware of that many good resources for jazz theory online unfortunately, but there is this site:

EDIT: I love the Jazz Piano Book, it's not really a theory book but I thought it was great. The author has also written a Jazz Theory Book which a lot people seem to like, but I haven't really gone through it yet. Some other options are the Berklee Book of Jazz Harmony and the Jazz Harmony Book

u/dietcheese · 2 pointsr/JazzPiano

The Levine book is usually the go-to book for jazz pianists:

Make sure to use your ears a lot, sing what you play, transcribe a ton, take your time and concentrate!

u/spidy_mds · 2 pointsr/piano

I am mostly into classical at the moment, but I would really-really love to start entering the jazz-part of the Piano at a point, is it easily readable for jazz-beginners?


This one?

u/ILikeasianpeople · 2 pointsr/WeAreTheMusicMakers

Is orchestration, composition and harmony something you've studied quite a bit on? Like, have you grabbed a few books on the subject and dug in? The orchestra is a fickle mistress, especially when migrating from another, non-orchestra related, genre. If you haven't studied one or any of those things, it will make the learning process a living hell. Thankfully, the orchestra has been around for hundreds of years, so there is a massive amount of knowledge out there to pull from.

These lists are "start to finish" kind of lists. Do them in order and you should be alright. One will be a "quick start" list (not as much to read) and another will be a "long haul" list (way way more to read).

Quick start (a few months of study)

  1. Mark Levine's Jazz Piano Book

  2. Schoenbergs Fundamentals of Musical Composition

  3. Korsakov's Principles of Orchestration

    Long haul list (will probably take you a (few) year(s) to complete):

  4. Schoenbergs Theory of Harmony or Pistons Harmony plus workbook

  5. Schoenbergs Fundamentals of Musical Composition

  6. Mark Levins Jazz Piano Book

  7. Sam Adler's The Study of Orchestration vol. 4 plus Workbook

    I hope these resources can help a bit, if you decide to take the plunge. If not, there are tons of resources at that should be helpful.
u/thesuperemperor · 2 pointsr/Jazz

I took up Jazz Piano a few years back. The guy I took lessons from recommended this book. It is, hands down, the most useful jazz piano book, arguably best jazz book overall, that I have ever run across. It has all kinds of theory and improv techniques with quotable licks and riffs from a number of jazz standards. You cant go wrong with this book.

u/jdrew619 · 2 pointsr/JazzPiano

A couple of channels that are good are:
Kent Hewitt ( This guy is old school and can actually play. His overall production isn't flashy at all but the content is solid and he adds free sheet music.

Dave Frank ( I am not crazy about his playing style but he is a good educator. His lessons are well organized and the content is legit.

Also the Jazz Piano book by Mark Levine is a must-have ( You need to be able to read music but that is something you should learn anyways.

As for the freejazzlessons guy, it's a personal opinion but I find him hacky and mediocre.

Finally, if you want some books to get started I can PM you some stuff I own.

u/jseego · 2 pointsr/piano

This book has solid overviews of the various playing styles, including for left hand

For improvisation, you are not going to sound good right away. What it sounds like you are doing is basically exercises, just running pentatonic scales over chords - that will sound very exercisey. "Okay, Cm7, playing C minor pent, okay, F7, playing F pent..." etc. What you want to do is look ahead to the notes in common and work on your ear training around that. So, instead, you might go: "Okay, Cm7, gonna play C - Eb - F - G, then the F7 comes up and you continue to A - C - D - F....

Basically, point is you can still play pentatonics, but try to create runs and melodies that move over and through the chords, not just shifting the scales once per chord.

It's not something you think about - you want to get used it and how it sounds so that you can focus on using a combination of ear and theory to make musical sounds and shapes that you want, and the fabled melting away of the notes and chords happens.

As rough as it is, you gotta do that kind of thing in all keys as well. It really opens up the piano and reveals secrets of how things work.

Also, listen a lot and try to play along with your favorite recordings. Take a class / find other improvisers who are at your level. It helps so much.

Final thing is, there is more to improvisation than getting the notes right. A solo with wrong notes and great rhythm and lot of passion is much more interesting and listenable than a solo with all the "correct" notes and no feeling and just running uninspired rhythms. Try soloing with just roots and fifths of the chords and see how much fun you can have. Try soloing with absolute abandon and let your hand just flop around and see what kind of interesting sounds you can make. Prepare your mind to forget about the notes...that's the eventual goal (even though you can still be strategic about scale degrees and chord tones and such).

Good luck and have fun!

u/barryfandango · 2 pointsr/piano

/u/improvthismoment is right about how jazz is generally learned, but if you prefer to sight read insead of lifting from recordings, there are lots of great jazz transcriptions out there that can help develop your style and vocabulary. The World's Best Piano Arrangements has a generic sounding name but is a pretty dynamite book that has taught me a lot.

If you're interested in getting going with real jazz piano, The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine is a classic that has kicked off many great jazz piano journeys. Good luck!

u/medicalsteve · 2 pointsr/WeAreTheMusicMakers

It's always tough to hear this, but there's really nothing better than listening to your favorite recordings and transcribing everything you hear.

But... if you're just getting started and looking for a book, I highly recommend "The Jazz Piano Book" by Mark Levine

I picked this up several years into playing, and wished I found it sooner. He gives transcribed examples of the topic at hand from classic recordings, instead of just dumping a bunch of theory and voicings on you. (the theory is there too, but it's much more accessible the way he goes about it.)

If you don't already have them, go find the classic recordings he references, and listen until your ears bleed.

If you're really serious about it, go ahead and transcribe the full piano parts (including the comps, not just the solos) and you'll be well on your way

u/dfmtr · 2 pointsr/piano

For improvisation, Dave Frank's Joy of Improv books are good for working through. Here's his full DVD going over the very basics.

For comping and jazz harmony in general, Matt Levine's Jazz Piano Book.

u/detective-loser · 2 pointsr/musictheory

I’ve yet to buy this book but maybe....

The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine

u/ttchoubs · 2 pointsr/piano

The Jazz Piano Book is a fantastic place to start.

u/panda12291 · 2 pointsr/piano

I have this one, which I use frequently. It may be a bit more modern than you're looking for. It definitely has some of the old standards, but it also has some more recent stuff.

This one also looks promising and has good reviews, but I'm not familiar with it.

The arrangements are fairly simple and can be a bit sparse, but they also provide chords and you can fill in where you need to. I find they're great for the kind of thing you're talking about- people can just request a song from the list and you can sight read it well enough to be recognizable.

u/dearbluey · 2 pointsr/firefly
u/bdonreddit · 2 pointsr/trumpet

I like Claude Gordon's approach, so I recommend his Systematic Approach to Daily Practice. It will be too much for you at the outset, but that's ok— most exercises will have a "play as much as you can" deal; move on after you've missed three times in a row.

Good books for specifically lip flexibility are Collin and Irons.

And of course, you can't go wrong in general with Schlossberg or Arban's.

Either Clarke or Arban's will be good for technical facility/etudes, once you're there, but really the only way to get there is to play them so start now. Play them way downtempo if need be, but you're not going to wake up one day out of the blue and be good enough to start playing out of the Clarke book full speed.

That being said, I also agree with the stuff /u/awashsound said; I just felt like giving you options if you want to go deeper, or if you—you know—prefer dead trees to computer screens.

u/halicon · 2 pointsr/classicalguitar

You're not going to get a lot of people in r/classicalGuitar that are going to answer this without some kind of recommendation that you just improve your regular score reading skills instead. Tab can be a great tool at times, but more often it seems to be used as crutch.

My advice is to start sight reading as much as you can whenever you find tab-free scores because it is skill that you can only develop with dedicated and focused practice. Whenever you go to the effort to transcribe a score to Tab, you are still leaning on a crutch because when you start playing, you aren't using the music, you're using your Tab instead and not actually getting any score reading practice in. In your mind, you are probably translating your scores to Tab instead of actually reading the score. Tab and score notation are similar in that respect. In fact, I suspect that if you just force yourself to give up tab you'll see an amazing and very rapid increase in your ability to process standard scores.

Here is a personal example: When I read Spanish I am not actually reading Spanish... I'm translating it into something I am familiar with. I still have to learn to transform my thought process into Spanish before I am truly reading Spanish. Once I stop communicating by saying buenos noches to mean "good afternoon/night" and I just start saying buenos noches when I mean "buenos noches", I am actually speaking Spanish. Until then, I am just translating words. That won't change until I immerse myself in Spanish without clinging to English as my crutch. The same thing applies to changing from Tab notation to score notation.

I have this book and it is great practice in sight reading and you may want to check it out. It is nothing more than a bunch of short sight reading exercises. Teach yourself one or two of them a day without transcribing them to tab first and I am absolutely confident that your reading skills will improve noticeably.

If you are really insistent on using Tab though, is decent.

This book has some decent stuff in it as well:

u/grandzooby · 2 pointsr/AskReddit

I listed that one too. The music is amazing! And now Bear has released a piano book with that music:

And he even plays many of the pieces as they are in the book on youtube:

u/iambearmccreary · 2 pointsr/IAmA
  1. It IS available!
  2. Can't vouch for Linux software. I use Digital Performer, Pro Tools, Sibelius as primary software
  3. Haven't jammed with those guys.
  4. That heavy synthesizer pulse you're hearing is a combination of a number of synths, run through a number of processors including amp simulators and distortions. The pulsing sound comes from an LFO (low frequency oscillator) on a synth filter. Fun stuff!
  5. No concert in Houston, but I'm going to be there at Galacticon! Maybe I'll play a little piano if the crowd wants to hear it ;)
u/KamFox · 2 pointsr/BABYMETAL


u/american_daimyo · 2 pointsr/BABYMETAL

Hope Metal Resistance will follow. The first band score was already almost only for the first album.

u/vivalavivi · 2 pointsr/gaymers

Does your bf like Final Fantasy? They sell physical books of sheet music for all of their piano collections, e.g:

For games like Skyrim, I'm not too sure. You could try to find the sheet music online and create a bound book for him :D

u/Osteelio · 2 pointsr/piano

Thanks guys!

  1. I'm recording into Reason directly from the piano into my laptop.

  2. The sheet music is from the official Final Fantasy 7 piano collections:

  3. I definitely would like to take requests, I'll check out those arrangements!

  4. I've been playing piano for 23 years (started when I was 4, haha)
u/akinsgre · 2 pointsr/trumpet

I suggest flex exercises for the range. I use "Advanced Lip Flexibilities for Trumpet"

My motivation usually comes from having to play in situations where I feel like I fail. So when I was asked to improv and couldn't do it, I started on a journey to get better.

My instructor has me practicing patterns in all keys (like ii V I patterns), transcribing jazz solos and practicing improv over increasingly more complicated changes.

u/Iwachmybody · 2 pointsr/trumpet

I would also recommend:

Advanced Lip Flexibilities for Trumpet by Dr. Charles Colin

And all the Etudes by Hering are nice too.

u/OpafiX · 2 pointsr/trumpet this has always been my go-to warmup book, and for more complex exercises to improve specific technique, I use my Arban Cornet Method (

Hope this helps :)

u/heroides · 1 pointr/musictheory

I believe anyone studying counterpoint should read Johann Fux's Gradus ad Parnassum, nowadays published as two separate volumes translated and edited by Alfred Mann, namely The Study of Counterpoint and The Study of Fugue.

u/g_buster · 1 pointr/Guitar

Buy a copy of Speed Mechanics for lead guitar and look through that. Keep the your thumb on the back of the neck as much as humanly possible. Use your pinky. Work on minimizing and isolating your movements.

u/apaatsio · 1 pointr/Guitar
  1. Get Speed Mechanics for Lead Guitar
  2. Practice.
  3. ???
  4. Profit.
u/moonsfax · 1 pointr/rocksmith

Nice job!

I noticed you lift your fingers quite a bit from the fretboard, especially your pinky. If you're looking to improve your mechanics a bit, check out Troy Stetina's Book. It helped me quite a bit.

u/DavidNcl · 1 pointr/Guitar

I've got Nelson's book too. It's a good book too, but I think it's not a patch on another Stetina book... "Speed Mechanics" :

(Damn, Troy... you should be paying me man!)

u/CHOPPED_IN_HAAUUUUGH · 1 pointr/Guitar

The short answer is: by going slow and slowly building up your speed with a metronome.

A more complicated answer would give you various exercises and stuff to play. That was one area where I struggled when I first wanted to build my speed up - I knew sort of what methods I needed to apply to my practice. But I didn't know what exactly to practice. I found this book: pretty helpful in getting my mechanics on point and to make me comfortable with playing fast. I like it because it's got lots of focused little exercises to work on and I can take notes and stuff in the book.

Steve Stine's youtube is also a good free resource for some speed building exercises.

u/WickedMystic4 · 1 pointr/Metal

This book Has helped me a whole lot through the years. It teaches finger position and technique and picking. It's a really good book.

u/sourced · 1 pointr/Guitar

Wikipedia, for sure. It's got great information on every kind of chord, what modes are, what makes an arpeggio, etc etc

I don't use many guitar books, but I'm still working through Speed Mechanics, and it's been several months since I bought it. It's just exercises, though, so it's not really 'helpful', per se.

u/Koan_Industries · 1 pointr/piano

Hey man, glad you have picked up piano! I'm by far not the best pianist out there, but I can give you some advice on this.

When I was younger (elementary to middle school) I would practice each piano piece I knew 10 times a day and then continue to learn the piece I was on. I can tell you that while I did learn quickly, just as quickly I began to not like piano. Then on the opposing side, near the end of middle school throughout high school I would only play when I went to my piano teacher. As you can probably tell, my progress slowed down incredibly and I believe I only learned about 4 pieces over that time. Now I am finally back into piano after a 4 year hiatus and while I am practicing every day I still only put in about half an hour and on rare occasions will put in an hour.

My point in saying this is that you should prioritize playing and practicing so that you still enjoy it versus trying to hit some kind of benchmark because you feel you have to.

If you really feel like you want to be playing more than you are my tip is pretty simple and is one I employ all the time. Just have more than one practice session per day. I often will spend 10-15 minutes on the piano at a time but will go back multiple times a day whenever I feel an urge. It will all add up to an hour in the end and you won't feel like you are forcing yourself to continue playing when you don't want to.

As for scales, like I said i'm not the best player in the world, I only really know C major and A minor (the gimme ones because they have no flats or sharps). It is definitely important to know if you want to go into composing or are going to school for it, but for a casual player it isn't the end all be all if you don't know them. Knowing your scales is definitely important when you are sight reading hard pieces as you can pretty much just make an assumption as to how the continue the piece without having to dictate all of your energy to reading every note. That being said, it is still possible to sight read (albeit more slowly) pieces without knowing all the theory.

Finally, if you want to add something to your practice without having to learn new pieces or just work on the piece you are on you could definitely try out Henle's virtuoso pianist.

This will also help you with scale memorization and technique.

u/obscured_by_turtles · 1 pointr/Guitar

Here's one:
I did get the name wrong to a degree.
But importantly, this link has a fair amount of material that explains the book:

u/Kaioatey · 1 pointr/Guitar
u/broadband_banana · 1 pointr/jazzguitar

Mickey Baker's book is a great resource for developing your comping skills and helps to connect the dots with musically coherent ideas. The second half of the book is on soloing, but I highly recommend it.

u/throw_up_n_away · 1 pointr/Bass

I was looking at this book at SamAsh last week, lols pretty interesting.

u/PierreLunaire · 1 pointr/Bass

The Bass Grimoire might be a helpful resource.

u/wallaceant · 1 pointr/Bass

A few things that have really helped me with theory are:
Learning about and how to use the Circle of Fifths
The Bass Grimiore and
Victor Wooten's Groove Workshop

u/GifGaffeGiraffe · 1 pointr/musictheory
u/doublestop23 · 1 pointr/Random_Acts_Of_Amazon

I'm getting ready to go to school to get my teaching certification, so I can teach music in schools. I can't guarantee that I could do that if I wasn't single.

[This] ( would be very helpful to me.

u/Jay_is_on_reddit · 1 pointr/Bass

Here are my accessories in a backpack I take to every gig:

u/65TwinReverbRI · 1 pointr/musictheory

I would say print it yourself too - but only if you have access to a copier that you don't have to pay for!

Because yes, ink is so unethically expensive today that it's probably more cost-effective to buy it from Amazon.

When I was in college we were required to by 11 x 17 paper and there used to be one company that made it on really nice paper - very thick so you could erase and wouldn't lose your staff lines or wear a hole through the paper. And that's why printing it yourself is still good - because you can customize it - put it on the paper you want, size you want, and so on.

But if you just need "standard" basic paper, yeah I'd buy it in bulk (they do also make manuscript paper books with spiral binding).

I printed out something from my printer last night and we've bought a little heavier paper because I'm tired of the way-too-thin paper being used everywhere now to save a penny.

But when I wrote on it with pencil, I could barely see it. Either the paper is too glossy to abrade the lead off it, or the lead material in the pencil is no longer the quality pencil lead used to be (most likely the case as everything now is just made cheaply and poorly and quality is nothing).


Usually covers it.

Go with the Archives or Carta brand if you want something a little nicer.

Though I want to say, even though blank manuscript paper still has it's place, you should really be becoming an expert in Finale or Sibelius in this day and age if you want a career in music, especially given you're in college.

u/phrynicrian · 1 pointr/musictheory

If you'd like something physical, you can instead purchase a manuscript notebook to write in.

u/mtaylorc · 1 pointr/Jazz

Drummers / Percussionists should purchase Master Studies by Joe Morello. I've used his book for years (my teacher studied with Joe), and I've since used them with my students.

Master Studies II is out as well and is just as good.

These books are a more modern version of George Stone's Stick Control.

u/bigpapasan · 1 pointr/Percussionists

are you asking about hand independence or developing even playing with both hands? and can you read music?

a short answer assuming some things: get Master Studies by Joe Morello, and start with the Stone Killers. Work your non dominant hand more than your other.

u/samurai_cyborg · 1 pointr/Music

This book changed my life.

u/mrstillwell · 1 pointr/jazzguitar

the fifth edition is the classic 'illegal' version of the book. it has some errors but it also has a lot of the hipper changes in it. It will be hard to find in a store cuz its 'illegal' but you can find a pdf of it on piratebay no problem.

the 6th edition is the legal version published by hal leonard. It's designed to be a legal replacement for the 5th edition. the page turns are 99% the same and the errors have been fixed. Its usually priced lower than the original and can be bought or ordered easily from any dealer. Some of the changes aren't as hip but its a suitable replacement to the original, shady 5th edition. I reccomend getting the 6th edition first.

The Sherr music books are really good but they're not standard like the original illegal book or the 6th edition.

u/Sesquipedaliac · 1 pointr/Jazz

This one is pretty much the standard Real Book, based on my experience.

Personally, I'm partial to this version, but I don't think I've ever seen anyone else actually use it.

u/Run_nerd · 1 pointr/piano

The Real Book is a popular one. I've also heard good things about the New Real Book.

u/rolandkeytar · 1 pointr/Jazz

I asked my university piano teacher a similar question. "What are the best transcriptions of common tunes?" His answer: "The ones you make yourself."

I think this is true. The only charts/transcriptions that you can really trust are the ones that you've created with your own ear. Real books and their many versions and electronic iterations (the irealbook ap is an amazing resource for learning tunes and transcribing simple chord charts) are invaluable sources for being introduced to tunes, but they are merely sketches. Choose an artist/version of a tune that you dig and learn that specific version using the real book chart as a starting point.

Recognizing those subtle differences and artistic choices is the beauty of learning jazz tunes.

That being said, I feel that the most accurate realbooks are the "New Real Book" series . They are based on specific recordings so they stay true to an actual version that a particular artist recorded or performed regularly.

Of course, not every tune is included so you have to rely on your faithful ears to figure out those Shorter tunes you're looking for.

Another resource is The Real Book Videos Subreddit . It has definitive versions of the Real Book tunes.

u/SpinalFracture · 1 pointr/Jazz

The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine is a great jazz course, aimed at pianists who are already reasonably proficient.

u/Hilomh · 1 pointr/JazzPiano

I did a Google search and found a ton of companies that sell it.

u/KidCheetos · 1 pointr/IWantToLearn

Chord extensions are just how you voice chords beyond the fifth. You just use scales and keep counting upwards, 9ths, 11ths...

Inversions are just chords with the lowest note moved to the top of the chord.

1st inversion
2nd inversion

Inversions let you change the flavor of a chord or play chord progressions with minimal movement. IOW you can play progressions without having to bound up and down the keyboard.

As far as chops, I don't really know. I have found this to be an excellent free online resource:

A lot of people think this one of the best jazz piano resources out there:

u/urbster1 · 1 pointr/piano

Check out the Youtube channel jazz2511 and his website

Also highly recommend Luke Gillespie's Stylistic II/V/I Voicings book

Mark Levine's Jazz Piano book is also popularly recommended, as is Randy Halberstadt's Metaphors for the Musician.

u/BeowulfShaeffer · 1 pointr/piano

It would help if we knew more about your own level of knowledge too. For instance I could recommend Schoenberg's Theory of Harmony or Levine's Jazz Piano Book but those books expect a lot out of their readers, so you may be better off with simpler books.

One book I liked a lot was Carl Humphries The Piano Handbook. It doesn't assume you know much and goes over a lot of material without a lot of depth. It might be a good starting point. It has something to say about pretty much every musical style from 1400 to today.

EDIT: I just reread your post and see you already have the piano handbook.

As a six-month player you probably need to work on physical technique more than anything. And you'll need a teacher for that. :( Can you find one to even meet once a month for 30 minutes?

u/OnaZ · 1 pointr/piano


Mel Bay Encyclopedia of Scales, Modes and Melodic Patterns - Everything you need for jazz and beyond.

Any Czerny Book - Simple and fun pieces that don't take a long time to learn and can help a lot with technique.

Any Bach Book - I don't care if you play classical, jazz, pop, whatever; Practicing Bach will make you a better player.


Maiden Voyage - Great place to start with jazz and get used to play-alongs.

The Jazz Piano Book - Good reference book for expanding your jazz ability.

Piano Classics - Good compilation of some of the more popular classical pieces.

u/asgiantsastros · 1 pointr/piano

2 things: jazz piano teacher, and this book.

Also, play a lot with other people & improvise.

u/tbp0701 · 1 pointr/Jazz

u/Lemwell gave you an especially great answer, and the others are quite good as well. So I'll simply provide some resources.

Here is a link for a free download of the Aebersold Redbook. There's a lot of great general info in there for all instruments, but it does discuss chords and voicings.

Probably the best jazz piano resource is Mark Levine's The Jazz Piano Book. (linked to Amazon, but available at several places. It's available spiral bound so it fits nicely on a music stand. It has a great deal of information about chords, leading, and everything else jazz piano related.

For a fun, easy beginning, do you know the blues scale? If not it'll be in the free Aebersold book, but it's 1-b3-4-b5-5-b7-1. So a C blues scale is C-Eb-F-Gb-G-Bb-C. Practice playing that over a standard C major chord. Then try mixing it up, finding some phrases you like. Then try the F blues scale over an F major, and a G blues scale over a G7. Then put them together in a 12 bar blues and see what you come up with.

u/Issac_ClarkeThe6th · 1 pointr/piano

Can’t comment on the Hanon, but I do have a recommendation you may be interested in. I’ve been playing classical for a while, but in the last year decided to take jazz improv on top of it. There are a few things that if you really work at then will show stellar results.

First thing is chord voicing, these are truly your bread and butter as a jazz pianist. If you ever play in a group, then these will give you a great sound with many many options to choose from.

It would take a very long time to write out a bunch of voicings, but here’s an example. For major chords there are two main interchangeable voicings which we’ll simply refer to as A and B voicings..
-A voicing is formed by starting at the root, then moving up a major third, then building a minor 7th chord. For example C root, then E minor 7. If you look at it, you’re really just playing the 1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th, and 9th. You can drop the root once you learn minor and dominance chord voicings, but seeing not only the expanded C major chord, as well as the chord writhin a chord (E Minor 7 within the C major 9) is extremely helpful.

-B voicing is a major third up from the root, then a minor 7th chord, finally inverted twice. This will give you another voicing option so you don’t use the same chords over and over. Now for any major chord, you have three options (Root, Rootless A, Rootless B).

There are more chord voicing beyond that, but that brief example should give you an idea of what’s out there. There are A and B voicings for Major, Minor, and Dominant chords, with Dominant chords having many many options.

For now I would recommend learning you major 7th, dominant 7th, and minor 7th chords in all 12 keys. Play the root an octave lower, then with both hands play the given rootless voicing above it. This will give you an excellent foundation to build from.

Next most important thing is Modes and Scales. Each chord has a corresponding scale with notes that will sound great over a particular chord. Again due to the vast array of options, I’ll give you a starting place to go from.
-Major chords can be paired with major scales. Pretty cut and dry.

-Minor chords will be paired with the mode Dorian. Dorian is similar to a minor scale, but instead of being formed with a flating the 3rd, 6th, 7th Of any major scale, it’s formed by flating the 3rd and 7th of any major scale. So D Dorian would be all white keys.

-Dominant chords can be paired either the Mixolydian Mode. Mixolydian is formed by flating the 7th note in a major scale. So G Mixolydian would be all white keys.

Now there are many MANY options just like with chords, but this will give you a very firm place to begin improvising. As an exercise to get you playing the right scales with the right chords, play in your right hand a particular scale up two octaves and a third, while playing in your left hand the corresponding chord every 8 notes. You’ll see it line up perfectly. When you can do that reliably at 80 bpm with you major, minor, and dominant chords/scales, you’ll be in a great places.

Last but not least is basic Roman numerals theory. If you know what Roman numerals sound good going to each other, then you’ll be in a great place to not only improvise, but to even write and improvise your own songs on the fly. Again, there’s a whole lot we could cover, but to give you a taste, we’ll talk about probably the biggest progression in Jazz. The ii-V-I.

If you break it down a ii-V-I is the culmination of what we’ve talked about so far in this post. First, why this progression. Well the V-I is a common pull in music. The dominant is one of the first in the overtime series, and it’s pull to I is extremely strong. Almost if not more in some cases powerful than the pull of a vii-I. That’s cool, but what about the ii? The ii-V is actually a very strong pull in its own right. So ii now leads us into V, which then takes us home to I.

For great examples of this in action listen to Afternoon In Paris, and Take The A-Train.

Now once you have those chords in place from earlier, you can fill in the minor 7th chords for the ii, the dominant 7th chords for the V, and the Major 7th chords for the I. So in the key of C this would look like d minor 7th for ii, g dominant 7 for V, and C major 7 for I. Once you can do a ii-V-I in every key, practice playing the corresponding scales while you ii-V-I. Or you could also add rootless voicings to the ii-V-I by doing ABA voicings (Minor A, Dominant B, Major A), or BAB voicings (Minor B, Dominant A, Major B).

I would highly recommend buying a copy of The Real Book. This is a set of over 150 standard lead sheets for famous and great jazz songs. Both songs I mentioned above are in the book. Take the book, find a song, and break it down using Roman numerals. After a while things will make sense as far as what chords go where, and things will really start to click.

If you’re interested in further reading, I would highly recommend The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine. This book covers many many topics, and will take you far. I like the book a good bit because by any topic, it will show a real excerpt from a jazz standard of a chord used so you can see how what you’re learning is utilized.

I know this is a lot to do, but just pace yourself. You can’t build a house in a day, but if you’re patient and diligent, the world of Jazz Improve is a fun and exciting one. Best of luck, and if you have any questions feel free to comment or shoot me a dm.

u/avoqado · 1 pointr/musictheory

Sithu Aye's Motif

The more you improv and learn licks, the more tricks you can fit into 16 bars. I learned on Piano but a great transcript to study for bebop is Charlie Parker's "Billie's Bounce," especially this part which is a lick he did a lot on the final 2-5-1. Also, maybe study some walking bass. You can speed those approaches to the final note for effect.

Lastly, some John McLaughlin. It's part knowing the song and transitions well, and having those familiar riffs and melodies at your disposal.

Edit:RELEVENT "The Lick"

Edit part II: I saw you were asking about modes. My favorite book is Mark Levine's THE Jazz Piano Book who covers the standards and the permutations of jazz, bebop, afro-latin (not trying to list each one), and general harmony. He's really good about modes.

u/RinkyInky · 1 pointr/JazzPiano



Do you have the Mark Levine books? What's the difference between his "Jazz Theory" book and the "Jazz Piano" book?

I would love some book recommendations, please do PM me (:

u/sexytimepiano · 1 pointr/piano

You can start by buying these two books and reading them cover to cover: Jazz Theory by Mark Levine and Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine That's a good first step. There's plenty of other books out there obviously, but I've had good success with these. Learning Jazz is all about becoming acquainted with a new musical language and internalizing it to the point where it becomes as natural and automatic as speaking. This takes a lot of practice. Good luck and be sure to listen to lots of jazz!

u/Launchywiggin · 1 pointr/piano

Jazz scales, modal scales, arpeggios. Those have to be part of your "vocabulary" if you're gonna create "poetry" on the spot. A good starting place is to listen to LOTS of jazz and start noticing how they construct solos. It's not random. They tend to either use a rhythmic, melodic, or harmonic motive (or all 3) which gets treated like a small scale theme/variations. Also--it's ok to "compose" your solos ahead of time. It's a myth that great soloists pull the solo out of nowhere. If they do, it's a stringing-together of already pre-defined ideas like scales, arpeggios, and motives.

edited to add*
Jazz Piano bible: The Jazz Piano Book by Mark Levine

u/d3cim8r · 1 pointr/piano

I'm in almost the same boat as you. I bought Mark Levine's Jazz Piano Book: it's totally brilliant and I don't think learning to sight read is mandatory if you want to get going, but it's probably advisable.

I'm trying to learn to sight read through Sight Reading Factory - you pay a fixed amount each year and get endless small bits of sheet music to go through. This addresses the big problem with learning to read - once you've heard the piece you're playing, you tend to focus less on the dots and more on the sounds, which is why a huge supply of new music is so worthwhile.

Good luck :)

u/Disney_Jazzcore · 1 pointr/musictheory

>Method book

What about this? I don't play a lot of piano and I have a keyboard (61 keys), still worth it? I don't mind investing in it if you think I can do it. I have done classical theory (still doing) for a while. Do you think my knowledge will help in Jazz?

>Yes, this is called dominant substitution. The first one is commonly called tritone substitution (C7 to F7). The second two are a little more exotic, and come from Barry Harris's theory.

Ah, yes! So, CEGBb - GbBbDbFb or F#A#C#E. So, Eb7 and A7 are Barry Harris's theory, huh? Ok.
Did he mention it somewhere or... was it in the books?

I am guessing you saying

>A G7sus4 chord is normally voiced as C-F-A (4-7-9).

Is because of this

>First of all, Cmaj7 with a 9 is Cmaj9. C9 is C7 with a 9.

This is all so juicy to learn but I dont want to spread myself thin than what I already am.

u/Pawlx · 1 pointr/Jazz

[Mark Levine's The Jazz Piano Book] ( is a really good place to start especially if you already know some basics.

u/donanobis · 1 pointr/Random_Acts_Of_Amazon

I love singing old classical jazzy music! It makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside...I don't get a chance to perform very often, but I could use more sheet music like this :)

u/bonumvunum · 1 pointr/musictheory

What is your favorite genre? I recently bought the great american songbook which is just a compilation of popular jazz, pop, and broadway songs from the early 20th century. I have been reading through like 5 songs a day with a metronome at a slow tempo, and i have already improved a ton after just one week! I play piano, but the book also has lyrics, so it would be great for you too, i think.

u/AMY_bot · 1 pointr/firefly
u/abilionaire · 1 pointr/FrankOcean

Hmm how about for now you get him this a a collectible? Frank Ocean - Channel Orange (Piano/Vocal/Guitar) Pretty cheap.

u/altitvde · 1 pointr/trumpet

get this book and practice out of it every day. your lip slurs will be powerful.

u/TouchingMeTouchingU · 1 pointr/trumpet

Practicing your endurance is the key. When you practice on your own, I'd recommend the Irons book which will help both flexibility and endurance, and try working up a few of the Arban's Characteristic Studies or the Charlier Etudes. Being able to play those etudes top to bottom have helped me a lot. Good luck!

u/tweakingforjesus · 1 pointr/Guitar

This is an easy set of spanish-style songs. It includes a CD for reference.

u/pmdboi · 1 pointr/MusicNotes

It's in the official BSG songbook (Amazon).

u/quadra900 · 1 pointr/BABYMETAL

It also includes some photos of their live performances according to the product page of

巻頭にはライブ写真を掲載し、アルバム『METAL RESISTANCE』までの代表曲12曲を一般的なバンド編成で演奏できるように、ライブ音源等をもとに譜面化したこのバンドスコアはファンのマストアイテムになること間違いなしです。

u/G01denW01f11 · 1 pointr/piano

What's your goal?

The piano jam has a video game/anime section if you don't know where to start. :)

Super Smash Brothers could be really good, because you get samples of music from a lot of different game series, and maybe you can find what you like that way? has a lot of transcriptions. They all go through review before they get uploaded, so you're probably not going to find anything awful.

A lot of Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts game have "Piano Collections" published Example

u/tempusfudgeit · 1 pointr/piano

Is that from this book?

I've really been thinking about buying it, just not sure how complex the music is