The folks in the PianoGroove Community voted slow blues lessons as the most in-demand style in this poll, and so I figured let’s tackle this one first before moving onto the other styles.
Earlier this month we recorded 3 blues courses. Each of the 3 courses contains 12 lessons and gives a different perspective into how the blues can be played and interpreted. I expect the editing stage to be finished around New Year time.
Find out more on the new courses below.
This course contains 6 beginner-focused lessons on the 12-bar blues, and 6 more advanced lessons on the 8-bar blues; the more common blues form played in New Orleans. Here is a short excerpt from the first lesson of the course:
Jon also hosted his first live seminar on PianoGroove earlier this month, check that out here if you haven’t already:
The second course taught by Josh Paxton incorporates the blues and also more general New Orleans piano styles. We explore the playing styles of the most famous New Orleans piano players including James Booker, Dr John, and Henry Butler. Here are some excerpts from a lesson in this course which covers more general blues piano ideas and principles:
The final course taught by Kyle Roussel is mixture of blues and gospel piano lessons. 6 lessons in the course are harmony-focused, and the other 6 lessons improvisation-focused. In this course we use the 12 bar form and gospel hymns to apply and demonstrate the theoretical concepts. In some of the improvisation lessons we also apply the concepts to a well-known jazz standard. Here is an excerpt from the lesson on passing chords:
I have a question regarding the lesson graphics for these courses.
My view is that it is better to just show the basic 12 bar or 8 bar form with the substitutions and passing chords above the form where applicable (you will see this in the above lessons).
I feel that being able to clearly visualise the form and the potential ‘harmonic pathways’ is more useful that showing the (often very dense) notation examples above the keyboards.
Please note that every performance and demonstration will be fully notated and available in PDF format in the downloads section should they wish to be used. I will also add these files in audio and MIDI so that they can be studied aurally and transposed if desired.
There are some example where the actual notation will be used in the lessons, for example the demonstration of a specific bass line or voicing technique. However, for most performances I plan to use the basic 12-bar or 8-bar blues form as the graphics as seen above.
If anyone has any feedback/ideas/suggestions on this approach please let me know, and more updates to follow as the lessons are edited.