How To Play Like Cedar Walton

In this thread we explore the style of Cedar Walton.

cedar1 cedar

Cedar Walton Biography:

Cedar Walton Biography.pdf (18.2 KB)

One of the top pianists of the post-bebop era, Cedar Walton was a valued and versatile hard bop soloist, accompanist, and probably most importantly, one of the greatest composers in jazz since the ‘60s.

Important Discography To Start With:

Cedar Walton - Suggested Discography.pdf (17.4 KB)

  • Eastern Rebellion - Quartet w/ George Coleman (tenor sax), Sam Jones (b) & Billy Higgins (dr) 1975
    Spotify Link Here
  • Eastern Rebellion 2 - Quartet w/ Bob Berg (tenor sax), Sam Jones (b) & Billy Higgins (dr) 1977
    Spotify Link Here
  • Cedar Walton at Maybeck - Solo Piano 1993
    Spotify Link Here
  • Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers - Three Blind Mice 1962
    Spotify Link Here

What Do These Exercises Cover?

  • Exercises on this thread are built to give the students a deeper view on Cedar Waltons style, soloing, comping as well as an overall look into the tradition of jazz through his artistry.
  • Exercises are transcription-based, following with a closer look into certain details of his playing. This way we can combine ear-training with learning the language of jazz, as well as analyzing closely what is happening.


I haven’t been participating in the transcription exercises, but I’m going to have a go with this group–love Cedar Walton. Thanks.

@scott1 glad to hear!

I’m posting the first transcription ex. tomorrow, hope you enjoy it!


Transcription Exercise No. 1

Bittersweet - Album: Eastern Rebellion

This transcription exercise covers the first chorus of the piano solo (right hand only), starting at 3m49s.

Click here for the start of the solo

The Assignment:

Transcribe the missing parts of the following transcription:

Bittersweet Transcription Exercise.pdf (31.2 KB)

Bittersweet Transcription Exercise.mscz (19.2 KB)

  • Right hand : transcribe the missing bars

The full transcription will be posted in 2 weeks with an analysis of the solo as well as details about what we can learn from the solo, and how to practice with it.

If you have any questions with the exercise, post them in this thread.

Have fun!


Full Transcription & Selected Analysis No. 1

Bittersweet - Album: Eastern Rebellion

Click here for the start of the solo

Here is the full transcription of the piano solo:

Bitterwsweet Transcription.pdf (39.4 KB)

Bitterwsweet Transcription.mscz (22.5 KB)

And here a selected analysis:

Bittersweet Analysis.pdf (222.7 KB)

If you have questions, comments or ideas, please write them to the thread,



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