How To Play Like Beegie Adair

No problem at all - I can re-record it tomorrow morning.

The video still says “optimisation pending” which is usually finished after a few minutes of the stream finishing. I will re-record and then if the engineers can recover the original we will have 2 versions :grin: as I’m sure they will both be a little different.

Yes totally… we will continue to analyse her work.

Thanks @celia - I’m really glad you enjoyed it.

Yes I will re-record it tomorrow morning, I’m recording a new course at the moment so it’s no extra trouble.


Hi Beegie Adair fans :wave:

This seminar has been re-recorded and I’ve also added the chapters.

Enjoy and any questions with the material presented we can discuss here or directly in the seminar comment section.



Thanks so much Hayden. I really liked that you performed the song in its entirety at the end. Very helpful!

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Thank you Hayden… this is great!

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Great I’m glad the final performance was useful @celia :sunglasses:

One of the most important take-aways of the seminar is in the chapter “Tips For Transcribing & Absorbing Material” where we discuss applying the harmonic or melodic material that we have transcribed to situations in other tunes.

It can be very enjoyable to play through a transcription in its entirety, but don’t overlook the opportunity to truly absorb a particular element of the transcription by applying it in context of other tunes that we are playing.

After doing this many times, the voicing/reharm/substitution/fill/lick/line/ or whatever it may be, becomes part of our ‘musical vocabulary’ that we can then use freely either when playing spontaneously, or when arranging.

A precursor to this is taking the element around different keys which we did touch upon in the seminar with the F Minor bass line movement. In hindsight I should have included more examples and applications of this in the seminar. Noted for future seminars!

Thanks @donna1 - enjoy!

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We have another Beegie Adair Listening & Transcription session later this month which will take place on Wednesday 26th January.

Add to calendar and submit your questions on the seminar page here:

This will be the 4th seminar discussing Beegie Adair’s playing style and all of the seminar URLs, homework assignments, and guidance are documented in this thread for quick and easy reference.

January 2022 Session - “But Beautiful” - Beegie Adair

Here is the recording of “But Beautiful” that we will analyse and transcribe:

You can find the basic chord chart here that we will be working from:

As usual we will discuss and analyse Beegie’s voicings, reharmonisations, and breakdown the fills and decoration that she uses in the introduction, the turnarounds, and in the trio section.

“But Beautiful” - Performed by Tony Bennet & Bill Evans:

When learning a new tune it’s always a good idea to find a strong vocal version to use for inspiration. I haven’t learnt this tune before and so one of the first things I did was search on Spotify to find a nice vocal version.

My favourite vocal rendition of “But Beautiful” is sung by Tony Bennet:

I like to listen to the vocal version for a week or so to get a feel for the lyrics and how the placement of the melody can be pulled and pushed. The above recording also has the some lovely accompaniment by Bill Evans.

Seminar Preparation

  • Listen to the Beegie Adair recording and study her voicings and arrangement

  • Play through the chord chart to familiarise yourself with the harmony

  • Learn the lyrics and play along with the Tony Bennet version

  • Browse YouTube/Spotify for other recordings and create a playlist of the ones you like

  • Notate anything of interest on the lead sheet ready for discussion in the seminar

See you in the seminar!


Hey Beegie Adair fans,

This month’s listening and transcription seminar has been pushed back to Sunday 6th March.

Find below the PDF chord chart with Beegie’s reharmonisations in red, and also a transcription of the first 16 bars which we will cover in the seminar:

Here is the original recording:

Add the seminar to your calendar here:

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Here is the seminar page:

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Thanks Hayden! I am so glad you chose this song. I have been listening to it the last few days. It is beautiful. Looking forward to the seminar!

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Yes it’s a beautiful tune and arrangement @celia

It’s a little tricky to play and so I will present some simpler ways to voice the chords whilst still keeping the main flavours and colours that Beegie uses in her voicings.

Check out this video of Beegie Adair performing at a Steinway & Sons event.

The audio quality is harsh at times - it seems to have been filmed by someone in the crowd - but the video contains 6 tune performances some of which I have never heard Beegie play solo piano before:

  • Two For The Road & Days Of Wine & Roses Medley (start)
  • Have You Met Miss Jones (03:21)
  • Satin Doll (05:52)
  • Somebody To Watch Over Me (07:35)
  • Stardust (10:46)

Wow! So glad you found this…just beautiful! She was such a talent and will be sorely missed.


WOW! A thousand thanks. I love the arrangement of But Beautiful and often listen to Beegie’s rendition.

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I’m in Florida right now escaping from the cold of the Great White North. I have no keyboard with me and am just listening to jazz, a lot of Beegie Adair, who is the musician who I would most like to understand right now. I’m at the stage where I can “hear” many of her chord progressions and know what they are. I’m trying now to listen to the improvisations she does and the II-V-I fill-ins that she uses whenever there is a two bar break in the music, which she does with absolute brilliance. I’m hoping that by the time I get back to my keyboard I’ll have some of that in my memory and be able to replicate it.


Beegie Adair “Autumn In New York”

In tomorrow’s live seminar we will analyse Beegie Adair’s rendition of the beautiful jazz ballad “Autumn In New York”. Tune into the seminar page and submit questions here:

Download the following PDF file which contains the original chord changes and Beegie Adair’s reharmonisations are annotated above the score in red:

In the session tomorrow we will listen to the recording and transcribe the solo piano introduction and the first 16 bars of the head. The chord symbols for the introduction have been added to the PDF file and during the session we will explore the exact voicings that Beegie uses.

Here is the original recording - take a listen to this before the session:

Hope to see you in the seminar!

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Thanks Hayden. Can’t wait!

This month we are arranging the tune “Moonlight In Vermont” in the style of Beegie Adair. Thanks to @karl1 for this tune suggestion.

Add the seminar to your calendar and register here:

Check out the solo piano recording below which we will use for listening, transcription, and inspiration:

More updates to follow.


Hey Beegie Adair fans :wave:

Here are the PDF handouts for the upcoming seminar next week:

As usual we will be working mainly from the chord chart with red reharmonisations. For those interested in the voicings see the 2nd PDF file above.

Be sure to listen to and study the recording ahead of the session.

See you in the session next Friday!


Thanks for these seminars Hayden! I’ve been into Beegies Style a lot lately. I haven’t been able to join them love or seen the archives but I wanted to know if they cover the full songs or just a few bars of the song?

Awesome - definitely check out the archives and each seminar has chapters to quickly review the contents.

In each session we cover at least half of the tune focusing on Beegie’s voicing choices, reharmonisations, and fills/melodic decoration.

It’s not an arrangement that’s taught, but rather the techniques and playing style that make her playing what it is.

Take a look at the session on “When I Fall In Love” or the one on “My Foolish Heart” and that will give you a good idea of how the seminars are structured.

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Thanks! I thought an interesting idea for a seminar could be on how Beegie arranges Bossa Nova (The Girl From Ipanema) or more up-tempo Bluesy-esque Tunes (Blue Prelude or Have You Met Miss Jones).

It would also be cool to see a Live seminar dedicated specifically to her Intros and Outros which is such an influential part in her playing. Just throwing those ideas out there in case you need ideas for future seminars :sweat_smile: Thanks again!

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