JAZZ IMPROVISATION LESSONS

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Welcome to the Jazz Improvisation Lessons page of Randy Hunter Jazz! Here you'll find jazz improvisation & jazz saxophone lessons by jazz education author, professional saxophonist, & Emory University jazz saxophone instructor, Randy Hunter.

Click here for my personal introduction and overview of the Jazz Improvisation Lesson series:

Jazz Improvisation Lessons Overview Video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dIbQuduZ38s

The lessons are in MPEG4 and PDF format. Lessons are rated according to the skill level, so hopefully any purchase you make will be in line with your musical ability. Some of these lessons are sax specific, but many are suitable for different instruments. Read the lesson description carefully before purchasing.

Once a lesson is purchased, it will be sent to you in one or more files via yousendit.com. This is a free service to you. You will be emailed a link where you can download the files.

LESSONS ARE USUALLY DELIVERED WITHIN 24 HOURS OF PURCHASE. I send the lessons personally, so in the event that I am away from home when you purchase, I may not be able to send your lesson immediately. Please do not worry, I'll get your purchase to you asap.

Please feel free to drop me a note before or after purchasing any of the lessons on this page if you have any questions.

Thanks!

Randy Hunter
randy@randyhunterjazz.com

Scroll down for more info!

 

TESTIMONIALS: Hear What People say.....
NEW!!! Now you can order lessons on USB flash drive. If you do not have high speed internet or prefer not to perform downloads on your computer, just place an order for your lessons and an order for the Randy Hunter Jazz flash drive ($9.95). Your lessons will be mailed promptly via the postal service, and shipping is free.
SKYPE Lessons
Contact Randy at: randy@randyhunterjazz.com

 

CLICK HERE for Beginning Sax Lessons

NEW LESSONS: Jazz Lesson 1- Developing a Practice Strategy
The Foundation of Technique and Harmony
Scroll down the page for lesson samples, descriptions, and to purchase lessons in small sets or individually.
Not sure where to start?

There are quite a few lessons in my series, so I understand if you are not exactly where or what you should begin with. Since most musicians are at different stages of development, I've created lessons at a variety of levels, so you have many options. There is no exact order for performing the lessons, but the following guide might help you pick what is right for you.

I've even offered the lessons in complete series for players at different stages, or you can scroll down the page to purchase 2-4 lesson series or individual lessons.

STAGE l: Purchase Now-$49.75 ($5 savings)

For beginning jazzers still working on basic fundamentals but looking to start improvising, the lessons in the list below would be appropriate. These lessons would help you continue learning your scales and develop a practice routine centered around learning to improvise on standard tunes and the blues.

Jazz Lesson 1: Developing a Practice Strategy
Learning the Major Scales/Time, Tongue, Technique (2 lesson series)
Making Sense of Jazz Improvisation (3 lesson series)
Introduction to the Blues (4 lesson series)

STAGE ll: Purchase Now-$55.75 ($6 savings)
For musicians with a bit of experience but still fairly new to improvising, the following lessons would help you continue to build your skills, develop your improvisation vocabulary, and get a bit more soul in your playing.

Jazz Sound and Style/ Jazz Improvisation; How to Play Chord Changes (2 lesson set)
Sax Tips (6 lesson set- videos only)
Shaping the Blues Scale (2 lesson set)
Relating the Pentatonics, Parts 1 & 2 (2 lesson set)
Major, Minor, Dominant; What's the Difference/Intervals; The Building Blocks of Jazz (2 lesson set)
The Foundation of Technique and Harmony

STAGE lll: Purchase Now-$34.75 ($5 savings)
For musicians with a reasonable amount of jazz experience and good basic skills looking to step it up a notch, the following lessons would be appropriate:

Relating the Pentatonics, Parts 3 & 4 (2 lesson set)
Through the Keys, Parts 1 & 2 (2 lesson set)
The Arpeggio Circle (2 lesson set)
Technique Through Concepts (2 lesson set)

STAGE lV: Purchase Now-$34.75 ($5 savings)
For more advanced jazz players looking for new practice techniques and ways to learn and understand jazz theory from a practical point of view, the following lessons would be appropriate:

Navigating the Changes (2 lesson set)
Through the Keys Part 3 (2 lesson set)
The Flat 9/Guiding the Harmony (2 lesson set)
Through the Keys, Parts 4 & 5 (2 lesson set)

 

Jazz Improv Lesson REVIEWS & TESTIMONIALS (click here)
AVAILABLE LESSON Series
Scroll down the page for individual lesson descriptions & additional lessons
Jazz Sound and Style
Jazz Improvisation: How to Play Chord Changes
(2 Lesson Set)..... $9.95
Navigating the Changes, Parts 1 & 2
(2 Lesson Set).....$9.95
LESSON SAMPLE
Relating the Pentatonics, Parts 3 & 4
Blues & the Pentatonic Scale
Funk & the Pentatonic Scale
(2 Lesson Set).....$9.95
LESSON SAMPLE
Relating the Pentatonics, Parts 1 & 2
(2 Lesson Set).....$9.95
LESSON SAMPLE
Sax Tips
Inflection & Embellishments (6 Video Lesson Set) ...$14.95
LESSON SAMPLE
Technique Through Concepts: (2 Lesson Set )......$9.95
LESSON SAMPLE

Learning The Major Scales
Time, Tongue, & Technique:
(2 Lesson Set)..... $9.95

LESSON SAMPLE
Shaping the Blues Scale: (2 Lesson Set)..... $9.95
LESSON SAMPLE
Introduction to the Blues: How to Learn & Practice the Blues (4 Lesson Set) ....$19.95
LESSON SAMPLE
The Arpeggio Circle: Circle Patterns (2 Lesson Set) $9.95

Major, Minor, Dominant: What's The Difference?
Intervals- The Building Blocks of Jazz (2 Lesson Set) $9.95

LESSON SAMPLE
The Flat Nine, Part 1
Guiding the Harmony (2 Lesson Set)..... $9.95
LESSON SAMPLE
Through the Keys, Parts 1 & 2
The Circle of Fourths & Dominants & ii-V-I's: The Modal View (2 Lesson Set).....$9.95
 
Through the Keys, Part 3
ii-V By Any Name: Parts 1 & 2
(2 Lesson Set).....$9.95
LESSON SAMPLE
Through the Keys, Parts 4 & 5
Tunes Through The Keys: The Shifting Tonal Center, Major-Minor (2 Lesson Set).....$9.95
 
Making Sense of Jazz Improvisation, Parts 1 , 2, & 3
(3 Lesson Set).....$17.95
VIDEO SAMPLE
Scroll down the page for lesson descriptions, additional lessons, or to purchase individual lessons.
This is 1 of the 6 lessons offered in the series titled, "Sax Tips; Inflection & Embellishments”. The Growl is explained and a practice method is outlined to help you learn to produce and utilize this popular saxophone technique.
FREE LESSON: This lesson offers a method for combining & making sense of saxophone overtone, embouchure, & tone production practice. A procedure is outlined that will help you develop better control over your tone color, pitch, & intensity.
DEMO: Making Sense of
JAZZ IMPROVISATION, Pt. 2

 

The Foundation of Technique and Harmony

In this lesson, you'll combine the study of jazz theory with practice designed to build your techniqueand an internalized knowledge of the foundation of jazz harmony. You'll begin by learning the naturallyoccurring chords found within a major key center. This is followed with patterns that will help you build technique and fluency in each key.

Skill level: Medium........Price - $6.99
http://youtu.be/cKQP0QPwlkI  

 

Jazz Lesson 1- Developing a Practice Strategy

For jazz newcomers, this lesson will help you develop a 3-part practice strategy that takes the mystery out of the "What should I practice" dilemma. Designed for sax players with basic skills looking to become jazzers, the lesson will help you focus on developing tone and technique, jazz chart reading, and most importantly, improvising. Two blues based play-along tracks are included with the lesson.

Skill level: Easy-Medium ......... Price- $6.99
http://youtu.be/w5ClMEvavLA  

 

Jazz Improvisation- How to Play Chord Changes
In this lesson, you'll take the first steps toward learning how to improvise over tunes with chord changes. In addition to learning how to interpret some of the most common types of chord symbols, you'll learn an easy-to-follow routine for practicing and assembling your musical vocabulary into melodic improvised phrases. The chord changes used in the exercises and examples are similar to those found in the standard tune, "Mack the Knife."
Skill level: Easy-Medium ......... Price- $6.99
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ql-CMovCV1s  

 

JAZZ Sound and Style
You may often wonder why, even though you're playing all the right notes, you still don't get quite the sound you're looking for when you play. In this lesson, you'll learn how to give your music that jazz sound and style. The exercises and examples are based on passages created over the chord changes to, "Mack the Knife."
Skill level: Easy-Medium ......... Price- $6.99
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=11wQdNKwHL0  

 

Navigating the Changes, Part 2
In this lesson, we'll take your practice to the next level by adding additional harmonic and embellishing components to the practice routine outlined in part 1 of this series. We'll also build speed and technique by working the exercises at a faster pace. The exercises and examples are based on the second half of the chord progression found in "How High the Moon."
Skill level: Advanced......... Price- $6.99
http://youtu.be/Z73qfqGJtOQ  

 

Navigating the Changes, Part 1
In this lesson, you'll learn a simple, straight-ahead, practice method for creating interesting lines that flow through the chord changes of tunes. You'll want to have your metronome handy for this practice routine, which is based on the chord progression from the "A" section of "Rhythm Changes."
Skill level: Medium......... Price- $6.99
http://youtu.be/LqH1m7ktBKY  

 

Relating the Pentatonics, Part 1:
The Major Pentatonic, Minor Pentatonic, & Blues Scales
In this lesson, you'll learn the relationship between the major pentatonic, minor pentatonic, and blues scales. Exercises and examples are provided that will teach you how to determine, understand, and play these scales in any key.
Skill level: Easy-Medium........Price - $6.99
YouTube Sample  

 

Relating the Pentatonics, Part 2: Exploring the Minor Pentatonic Scale

In this lesson, you'll learn technique building patterns using pentatonic scales. We also practice improvising together using the B flat minor pentatonic scale. Exercises and examples are transposed for tenor and alto sax.

BONUS: An MP3 play-along track is included with the lesson.

Skill level: Easy-Medium.............Price- $6.99
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7kpidjRzayM  

 

Relating the Pentatonics, Part 3: Blues & the Pentatonic Scale
In this lesson, you'll learn how to use pentatonic scales for improvising on dominant chords and in the blues. We'll start with some exercises for practicing pentatonic scales in typical blues progression combinations. The lesson concludes with some "I Play-You Play" practice with a play-along track. Exercises and examples are transposed for tenor and alto sax.

BONUS: An MP3 Blues play-along track is included with the lesson.

Skill level: Easy-Medium......... Price- $6.99
http://youtu.be/Mt6lLYm2qOw  

 

Relating the Pentatonics, Part 4: Funk & the Pentatonic Scale

In this lesson, you'll learn how to improvise on a funk based blues groove. Emphasis is placed on interpreting and performing with the proper style using a combination of pentatonic and blues scales. We also do some "I Play-You Play" improvisation practice using a play-along track. Exercises and examples are transposed for alto and tenor sax.

BONUS: An MP3 funk blues play-along track is included with the lesson.

Skill level: Medium......... Price- $6.99
http://youtu.be/-Ac6MJXdMYc  

 

Sax Tips: Inflection & Embellishments
This series of 6 video lessons provides insight and instruction for learning how to perform and use various inflection and embellishment techniques commonly utilized by jazz saxophonists. The growl, vibrato, scoops, down-bends, glissandos, and falls are each addressed in separate videos. Since these lessons deal with inflection techniques, written instruction is not included.
Skill level: Easy-Medium........Price - $14.95
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=juB9F79nZrU
 

 

Technique Through Concepts- Pt. 1 "Surround Tone Patterns"
This lesson will help you develop a strategy for incorporating technique and harmony building patterns in your practice. The patterns in this lesson are based on the concept of enclosing the tones found in major triads. Through a series of easy-to-follow steps, you'll learn how to understand, construct, and practice these patterns in all keys.
Skill level: Medium........Price - $6.99
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k5UvLVfyhYs

 

Technique Through Concepts- Pt. 2 "From Concept to Improv"

This lesson will teach you how to incorporate the concepts you practice into your improvised solos. Surround tone patterns learned in part 1 of this lesson series are used in the exercises and examples along with the chord changes to the standard, "Fly Me to the Moon."

A "Fly Me to the Moon" play-along track (in F) is available at: http://playjazznow.com/horns.flyme.html

Skill level: Advanced........Price - $6.99
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQynEb-_e-0&feature=share&list=PL305C400983F7BF48
 

 

Learning The Major Scales
This lesson provides a method for learning and memorizing the 12 major scales and arpeggios. Through a system based on logic, you'll learn how scales and key signatures are constructed, eliminating the need for rote memorization.
Skill level: Easy........Price - $6.99
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mnypRjPsdY8

 

Shaping the Blues Scale, Part 1

This lesson offers an approach for practicing and using the blues scale. The exercises are designed to help you locate the most soulful sounds in the blues scale. Exercises and examples are based on the C and G blues scales, but are easily transposed to any key

Skill Level: Easy........Price - $6.99
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4RCpCqPhADk
 

 

Shaping the Blues Scale, Part 2

This lesson addresses the use of the blues scale in relation to the chords in the blues progression. By targeting specific tones on the different chords, an approach is outlined for creating sophisticated and soulful sounding phrases. Examples and exercises are based on the C blues scale, but are also transposed to the keys of G & D.

Skill Level: Easy/Medium.........Price - $6.99
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7wO3PxcPaqk
 

 

Making Sense of Jazz Improvisation, Part 1

This lesson provides an introduction to jazz improvisation by offering a method for learning to interpret, practice, and perform the chord changes to standard tunes. The exercises and examples in the lesson are based on the chord changes to the standard tune, "Blue Bossa."

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson.

Skill Level: Easy-Medium........Price - $6.99

 

Making Sense of Jazz Improvisation, Part 2

This lesson explores the art of creating an improvised solo using several phrasing concepts and a basic jazz vocabulary. In the lesson, playing an improvised solo is related to the art of story telling. Exercises and examples in this lesson are based on the chord changes to the standard, "Blue Bossa."

A play-along track is recommended but not required for practicing and utilizing this lesson. The "Blue Bossa" play-along by Bill Harrison, available at www.playjazznow.com, is used for some of the examples in this lesson.

Skill Level: Easy-Medium........Price - $6.99
 
 

 

Making Sense of Jazz Improvisation, Part 3

This extended lesson offers an approach for learning to understand and improvise over the chord changes to jazz standards. You will learn how to determine the form of a tune, organize and practice the chord changes, and begin the process of creating a meaningful solo. Examples and exercises are based on the chord changes to "Don't Get Around Much Anymore."

Skill Level: Easy-Medium........Price - $9.99
 
 

 

Through the Keys, Part 1:
The Circle of Fourths & Dominants
This lesson provides a method for learning the "Circle of Fourths" and for practicing concepts, phrases, and licks on dominant chords in all keys using the "Cycle of Dominants."

An understanding of major scales is needed to get the most from this lesson.

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson

Skill Level: Medium................Price- $6.99

 

Through the Keys, Part 2:
ii-V-I's: The Modal View
This lesson approaches the major ii-V-I chord progression through the use of dorian, mixolydian, and major scales. Examples and exercises are provided to help you learn to play concepts, phrases, and licks over ii-V-I progressions in all keys.

An understanding of major scales is needed to get the most from this lesson.

Includes 2 Quicktime movies & PDF lesson

Skill Level: Easy/Medium............Price- $6.99

 

Through the Keys, Part 3:
ii-V By Any Name: 1
This lesson identifies the naturally occurring ii-V chord sequences found in major keys. A practice routine with examples and exercises based on the chord changes to Charlie Parker's tune, "Confirmation," is provided for helping you learn to recognize and practice the ii-V combinations in all keys.

An understanding of major scales is needed to get the most from this lesson.

Includes 2 Quicktime movies & PDF lesson

Skill Level: Medium/Advanced.....Price- $6.99

 

Through the Keys, Part 3:
ii-V By Any Name: 2
This lesson discusses two common iv-VII7 chord progressions in combination with the naturally occurring iii-VI7-ii-V7 sequence of ii-V7 chords. The lesson explores function of the progressions and approaches to practicing the progressions within the context of tunes. Exercises and examples are based on excerpts from the chord changes to "On Green Dolphin Street," and "I Remember You."

In order to get the most from this lesson, it is important to be familiar with the Roman Numeral chord numbering system covered in Part 1.

Includes 2 Quicktime movies & PDF lesson

Skill Level: Medium/Advanced......Price- $6.99

 

Through the Keys, Part 4:
Tunes Through the Keys
This lesson approaches the tasks of learning to transpose and practice standard chord changes to different keys using the Roman Numeral system outlined in previous lessons. Examples and exercises are based on chord changes from the standard, "But Not For Me."

Includes 2 Quicktime movies & PDF lesson.

Skill Level: Medium/Advanced......Price- $6.99  

 

Through the Keys, Part 5:
The Shifting Tonal Center, Major-Minor
This lesson extends the numeric approach of identifying, learning, and transposing chord changes to include shifts in tonality between related major and minor keys. Exercises and examples are based on the chord changes to the standards, "God Bless the Child," & "Autumn Leaves."

Includes 2 Quicktime movies & PDF lesson.

Skill Level: Medium/Advanced......Price- $6.99  

 

The Flat Nine, Part 1
The use of flat nines in resolving dominant chord harmony is addressed in this lesson. Exercises & patterns, based on the chord changes from the standard, "I Could Write a Book," are included to help expand your vocabulary to include these extensions of basic harmony.

In preparation for the lesson, it is important that you have an understanding of V-I & ii-V-I chordal movement.

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson

Skill Level: Advanced................Price- $6.99

 

Guiding The Harmony
This lesson explores the use of guide tones as a basis for navigating chord changes to standard tunes. Exercises & examples are based on the chord changes from the standard, "There Will Never Be Another You."

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson

Skill Level: Medium-Advanced.....Price- $6.99
LESSON SAMPLE

 

Intervals- The Building Blocks of Jazz
This two-part lesson provides a practical guide to understanding the different simple intervals (intervals within one octave) and offers playing exercises for learning and internalizing them in all keys.

Includes 2 Quicktime movies, PDF lesson & PDF scale sheet.

Skill Level: Easy............Price - $6.99

 

Major, Minor, Dominant: What's the Difference?
This lesson explores the differences between basic major, minor, & dominant chords & arpeggios. A practice method is also outlined for learning to understand these types of chords, & for playing the arpeggios.

Includes Quicktime movie, PDF lesson & PDF scale sheet.

Skill Level: Easy/Medium....Price - $6.99

 

Introduction to the Blues, Part 1
This lesson teaches you how to figure out the chord changes and arpeggios for a basic 12-bar blues. Instruction is also provided for beginning blues improvisation practice.

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson.

Skill Level: Easy ..........Price - $6.99

 

Introduction to the Blues, Part 2
This lesson takes your blues practice to the next level by enhancing the basic chord progression with additional scales. The concept of using guide tones to further explore the harmony is also addressed.

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson.

Skill Level: Easy/Medium ..........Price - $6.99

 

Introduction to the Blues, Part 3
This lesson advances your blues practice to include complete 1-3-5-7-9 arpeggios. Connecting phrases through the use of changing and common tones is addressed.

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson.

Skill Level: Medium ......Price - $6.99
LESSON SAMPLE

 

Introduction to the Blues, Part 4
This lesson provides an introduction to the use of pentatonic scales in the blues.

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson.

Skill Level: Medium ..........Price - $6.99

 

Time, Tongue, & Technique
This lesson provides a systematic approach for developing your time, technique, and jazz articulation skills. A metronome is required for the exercises.

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson.

Skill Level: Medium ..........Price - $6.99

 

The Arpeggio Circle, Part 1
This lesson teaches a technique using circle patterns for practicing & internalizing the arpeggios associated with the chord changes for most standard tunes. The chord changes from the first eight-bars of the standard, "You Stepped Out of a Dream," are used as an example.

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson.

Skill Level: Medium ....Price - $6.99

 

The Arpeggio Circle, Part 2
This lesson further explores the circle pattern technique explored in Part 1. In this lesson you will learn how to practice & incorporate arpeggio inversions in your improvisation. The complete chord progression from the standard, "You Stepped Out of a Dream," is used in the exercises.

Includes Quicktime movie & PDF lesson.

Skill Level: Advanced ..........Price - $6.99

 

Randy Hunter Jazz FLASH DRIVE ... $9.95
 

 

JAZZ EDUCATION MATERIALS
Level 3 Jazz Etudes
Introductory Etudes in Jazz Comprehension, Book 1
Complete Jazz Styles Duets Book 1
Set The Stage Combo series

 

randy@beginningsax.com