Hundreds of books of transcriptions, of many styles and instruments. From players of all eras and A Complete Jazz Vocabulary for the Improvising Musician. I was recently asked about my approach to transcribing jazz solos and learning from those transcriptions. In my opinion--and this is an opinion I. Transcription is an incredibly valuable tool to help jazz musicians improve their own solo ideas. Studying the improvisations of the Masters.
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To me, the ultimate goal of transcription is to increase your vocabulary as an improvising musician.
Analogies are often drawn between learning to play jazz and learning to speak a language. As the speaker of a language, expanding our transcriptions jazz helps us to better communicate our ideas transcriptions jazz express our feelings.
The same is true as an improvising jazz musician.
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Expanding our musical vocabulary helps us transcriptions jazz express our ideas and communicate our musical ideas, and we do this in the same way that we learned how to speak a transcriptions jazz listening, copying, repeating, internalizing, etc.
So what are the steps we would go through as the speaker of a language in learning a new word or phrase? Let's examine several of these steps and correspond them to the steps of learning from a transcribed solo.
Learn to Pronounce It If we were learning a new word or phrase, the transcriptions jazz thing we would do is learn how to properly pronounce and intone transcriptions jazz word or phrase.
I am writing this on December 11th.
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The "Word of the Day" today on merriam-webster. I have no idea what this word means, let alone how to pronounce it.
To me, the most frustrating thing about this is the fact that I can't pronounce the word. Have you ever been reading a book transcriptions jazz come across a word like this?
It's pretty frustrating, right? Not only do you have no idea what the word means, but you cannot transcriptions jazz conceive of a way to physically or mentally speak the word. So the first two things I did after seeing the word "nimiety" were read the pronunciation, and click on the little speaker icon to transcriptions jazz to the lady pronounce it.
After hearing the lady say it and decoding the little pronunciation guide, I was now able to physically and mentally say the word "nimiety". We can draw a comparison between this process and the process of technically learning transcriptions jazz play an improvised solo. Most all the artists I transcribe have much better technical facility on their instruments than I do, so one of the ways I grow from transcribing them is by treating the solo as a technical transcriptions jazz through which I can improve my command of the instrument.
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The next time you transcribe a solo, ask yourself what technical strengths and weaknesses your ability to play the solo reveals. Is the artist able to cut eighth-note lines at much faster tempos than you are? Transcriptions jazz so, what kind of transcriptions jazz lines are they?
Are they chromatic or diatonic? Are they step-wise or do they contain skips?
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Is the artist able to control their intonation in certain registers or at certain dynamics better than you?