Introduce Yourself To The PianoGroove Community! 🌎

Hi Richard,

Welcome to PianoGroove!

Great to hear you found Jovino’s tutorial on A Rã - that lesson is part of Jovino’s course on Triad Improvisation Concepts which was also the topic of his first live session that took place last week.

You can see the archived version of the live session here: Beyond Scales & Modes: Improvisation Masterclass w/ Jovino Santos Neto - check that out as I think you will be interested in the contents.

This will soon be migrated to the new LIVE section of the website which will house the past and upcoming live sessions.

Recommendations for courses and lessons:

You are correct that the Brazilian lessons are not for complete beginners. The following 4 jazz courses cover a sizeable chunk of jazz harmony theory, and once you are comfortable with these topics you will be able to follow all of Jovino’s teachings.

These courses are all taught by myself and each of these courses has a PDF practice planner to help you plan and structure your practice time.

You will see that the final module in each course is “Practice Drills & Exercises” where we drill the theory around all 12 keys.

I recommend students to spilt practice time in half, first theory drills, and then playing and learning jazz standards. You can see more in this video: Read Me! How To Use The Practice Planners ✅

That’s a very realistic goal Richard.

Building out your repertoire of jazz standards is an important step and so try to learn a new jazz standard or 2 each month.

Attending jam nights at local jazz clubs is a great way to get into the jam scene. After attending a few jam nights, you will start to hear certain tunes that are commonly played and so make note of these and learn them.

Using tools like the iRealPro is useful to practice in-tempo and it’s great to bridge the gap between playing on your own and with other musicians. Check out this forum thread for more info:

If you need any more guidance with the website just let us know.

Cheers and enjoy the lessons!

Hayden

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Thanks very much Hayden for the tips. That sounds like a good way forward and I’m going to print off all the various practice planners.

Richard

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Hi. Richard - Welcome! :blush: Thanks for sharing your musical journey - that was inspiring to read. As Celia mentioned, it only gets better. Very excited for you - hope you keep us posted about your jazz explorations. Happy playing!

Hi there,
I am Eric from Singapore. I started learning Ballad Piano in my 50s from a teacher. As she left for her further study and I then began to explore the possibility of the on line lessons.
I have been using PianoGroove platform for about 3 days by now and I must say it is really awesome, for its resourcefulness , ease of use and most important its responsiveness and serviceability of the support team.

I still need to figure out what’s best for my learning strategy but most importantly as what’s Hayden has advised me personally is commitment , dedication and his suggested practice routine.
As in the past I am just relying very much on fake music book, transcriptions of others and that dependancy limits my “fun” of jazzing up as well as neglecting the theory part. I am still trying to figure out how I could best to journey with PianoGroove as there are just plentiful there to explore.

Meantime, I have started with the Jazz foundation Basic and Standard Jazz and I am already quite certain PianoGroove is the right choice for me.

Thank you Hayden and PianoGroove team.

Cheers

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Welcome Eric,

I’m sure you’ll find your way quickly. It is sort of overwhelming at first. (And just when you start feeling comfortable, the new material becomes overwhelming again :sunglasses:)

You might read through Hayden’s response to Richard above. There, he pretty clearly suggests the best way forward. You mentioned Hayden’s comments about “commitment , dedication and his suggested practice routine.” To that I would add: Try not to be overly critical of yourself as you make your way through the various courses. Be patient, and most of all–have fun. :musical_keyboard:

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Welcome Eric!

Yes do follow the advice I emailed you regarding over-reliance on transcriptions.

As @scott1 highlighted, take a read through some of the guidance and suggestions in this thread and much of it will be applicable to you at this stage of your jazz piano journey.

Also here’s a handful of useful forum threads which I suggest new students to read over:

If you do have any questions with any of the materials don’t hesitate to ask.

Stay safe and enjoy the lessons!

Cheers,
Hayden

Hi!
I’m Edgar de Graaff, 36 years old. As a kid my father (musician and teacher) tried to teach me classical pieces on the piano, however it was the age when it was getting common to have a computer in a house. I went for the latter, spent a LOT of time developing applications when I was a kid and made it later my profession. Which I enjoy a lot.
It was always to pick up music for me. The serious turnaround came when I was on a roadtrip with a friend of mine. Back then, I was into producing house tracks and always on the lookout for good samples. But instead of using whatever others played, why not play it myself? Spent some time watching Rhodes repair videos and thought: yeah I can do that!
So I bought a MK1 from '78 which was in a pretty bad condition and started restoring it. Along the way, I taught myself playing some basic stuff with the help of musical theory videos. Unfortunately I never got the EP fully working again, so I sold it and bought a stage piano instead.

About 3 years ago we moved from The Netherlands to Germany. Since my job is still in The Netherlands, I rent a room and spend 3 days per week over there. This is my “mancave”; this room has nothing else but keys and a bed. Basically no distraction at all!
This was the period in which I started to play more seriously and quickly got into jazz. One of the things I enjoy a lot is transcribing jazz / fusion. Getting all alterations exactly right can be quite a big puzzle, but once all “flavours” are known, it speeds up the process a lot. Also you get to know the habits of an artists. For example: when guessing a Jeff Lorber chord, best to start with 7#9 :slight_smile:

Nowadays it looks a bit different. I permanently work from home and kids occupy a lot of my day. Needless to say it’s much harder to find the time to play (not just play something, but spend enough time to actually learn something new too). So that’s why I subscribed, to push myself to claim time on a day to do it. My work doesn’t create a skill I can use in my personal life and let others enjoy it, but music does! So totally worth giving it more priority.

So why PianoGroove? The level goes high. There’s definitely a lot to learn here for me. When playing, I mainly work with sheet music. It’s merely a help for my memory. What I like about the videos is the explanation about why a certain alteration was chosen over the other one. Hoping to be able to harmonise melodies in an interesting way myself one day. Or jam somewhere, who knows!

Anyway, enough typing, I’m spending too much time on the wrong keyboard!

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Hi Edgar!

So happy you have joined PianoGroove…warm welcome! You have indeed found the right place to continue your music journey. There are excellent instructors covering a wide array of styles. Personally, I have not found a piano learning site that comes close to what PianoGroove offers.

Do be sure and carve out time for your musical growth and enjoyment. I am sorry that I did not do that earlier in my life, but better late than never. :grinning: Just remember…have fun with it!!!

Welcome Edgar.

You’ve made a great choice with PianoGroove! I’ve been here for about two years, and I still find something of interest/use every time I log on. The site continues to steadily develop.

As you said, there’s much to learn here, and it’s quite clearly explained through both the videos and the accompanying PDF files. The fact that you already transcribe regularly gives you an advantage over most who start out here. (And thanks for the tip on Jeff Lorber. :sunglasses:)

Have fun!

welcome ! have fun with it.

hi Eric welcome; pick a tune you like out of the lessons and have fun; don’t ONLY focus on theory. enjoy

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Thanks for the warm welcome!!

Hi Hayden—-I am 44 years old, took piano lessons through my teenage years. Music has always been a part of my life—and don’t to give it up. I have a deep desire to learn jazz piano. It’s an enigma I need to crack—and keep on cracking. I love practicing as long as I’m progressing and can actually PLAY something.

Simply finding a way to learn jazz piano is difficult—-I mean, REALLY learn. There are dozens of ways presented—-but the scary thing is most of them will be a waste of time and money—-which makes me sad.

I’m really hoping PianoGroove will give me the structure and balance between theory and music to be able to progress and enjoy the journey.

Toby

PS—-tonight I started making flash cards to learn the number positions of each major chord.

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Welcome @toby2
Not one way to learn jazz for sure ! :partying_face: we just try to find our way the best we can :slight_smile: but most of all having fun is anyway the big engine for improving

so take fun with tunes

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Warm welcome Toby!!!

" I love practicing as long as I’m progressing and can actually PLAY something." You have found the right place! Hayden is very vocal that it is important to learn songs in conjunction with studying theory. For me, the theory would never ingrain itself in my mind unless I was able to apply it to a song and I would undoubtedly get bored and give up. I am two years into the program and working on 40 songs. I am loving it!

Have fun and share your progress with us!

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Thanks for the welcome, @Pierrot and @celia.

Yes, I have a question —-

It’s very clear I I need to start with the course Jazz Piano Foundations. In the Foundations Practice Guide lesson, Hayden said to spend five or ten minutes on each of the modules (major, minor, etc.) depending on if I have 30 or 60 minutes to practice.

Do I understand correctly that theory (Jazz Piano Foundations) is what I should only do at this time. Meaning, do I NOT do parts of other courses (like Beginner Jazz Arrangements)? I know it’s generally up to me what I do—-but is it the intention students master Jazz Piano Foundations before doing anything else?

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@pierrot and @celia - I believe I found the answer:

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Hi @toby2 :wave:t2:

Welcome to PianoGroove!

There is a discussion on this exact question here:

To summarise:

The Theory

  • I recommend students to study multiple courses together, the Foundations Course and Extended Chords Course are a great place to start as much of the theory is inter-related.

  • You can alternate the practice plans on different days, for example spend 2 days on the Foundations Practice Plan and then 1 day on the Chord Extensions Practice Plan, and then repeat. As you become more comfortable with the foundational material you can tweak this to allocate more time to the Chord Extensions course.

  • Then repeat this process with the next courses on Rootless Voicings and Altered Harmony. Once you have completed those 4 courses you will be much more comfortable with jazz harmony. It’s worth mentioning that we can always revisit the practice series, even for the foundations course. We can always improve at some of the drills, such inversions of triads/7th chords, playing and visualising the basic 3-note 251s etc… This stuff really is the foundation of jazz harmony and so time spent here is always time well spent.

The Jazz Standards

  • We should always be studying the jazz standards as this is where we learn to apply the theory in practice. Start with the tutorials in the Beginner Jazz Arrangements Course, and then once you have completed these you can study the jazz standard tutorials in any course.

  • It would make sense to first learn the jazz standard arrangements in the Chord Extensions Course, Rootless Voicings Course, and the Altered Harmony Course, but if there are any specific tunes that interest you, by all means watch the tutorials.

  • Don’t worry when you come across theory or arranging techniques that don’t make sense initially, as you progress through the courses everything will make sense.

  • Above anything else enjoy learning the arrangements. They are difficult to begin with but with each new tune we learn, the easier it becomes to read and interpret lead sheets.

Learning The 12 Bar Blues

  • In addition to the jazz courses, it’s also nice for new students to spend some time on the blues courses. The Chicago Blues Course is a good place to start and will develop your hand independence, groove, and timing.

  • You might also like our 12 Bar Blues Improv Course where we explore some important improvisation concepts such as chord tone soloing, enclosures, approach patterns, and chromaticism which all play an important role in the improvised solo.

  • The blues courses do incorporate a lot of the beginner jazz theory such as chord extensions, rootless voicngs, and altered harmony. By studying those jazz courses it will help you to play authentic blues piano and also styles such as samba, bossa nova, and funk. The jazz theory really is a core pillar to start exploring other improvised musical styles.

Ear Training, Transcription, & Improvisation

  • Transcription should be an integral componenet of our daily practice routine. Transcription is the process of listening to a record, and working on the notes, rhythms, licks, lines, fills, chord voicings, chord substitutions, bass lines, and full improvised solos. This may sound daunting at first but check out our How To Transcribe By Ear Course for more information on the how this works.

  • Spend a little time each day on the Ear Training & Transcription Exercises set by @Tuomo . Start with the beginner exercises and gradually work through the intermediate and advanced exercises. Once you feel more confident with this type of exercise, you can try the full transcription studies. Any questions with this stuff Tuomo is happy to assist in his area of the forum.

  • Developing our listening skills is very important so that we can analyse and learn directly from our favourite recordings. Check out this interview with our New Orleans Blues teacher Jon which sums up the joy of transcription:

  • By spending a little time each day on these exercises you will become more comfortable at replicating what you hear on your favourite records which is an important aspect of learning jazz piano and all other improvised piano styles.

I hope this helps Toby and here to help should you have any further questions.

Stay safe and enjoy the lessons!

Cheers,
Hayden

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Hi I’m Gary Boudreaux, a bored 26 year old. I’m actually a software engineer for a living but play guitar as a hobby since I was 15.
I mostly play progressive metal/rock and some more of the modern Jazz Fusion stuff. I have a basic understanding of how chord voicings work, how scales work, and functional and modal harmony.
I bought an Oxygen 88 keyboard from a friend and been meaning to learn how to play piano. I can’t remember how I found this website but I did some of the free tutorials and concluded that this had the best teaching format for me and I love the sound of Jazz Piano.

So far I’ve started the basic foundation practice regime (1 hour a day), practicing Miles Davis’s tune up (if my hands can stretch that far…) as well as learning some musical pieces from various video games.
My goal really is composition/Improvisation. I love writing/coming up with music. A pipe dream of mine is composing music for various media (indie games, film, etc). I’m doing piano groove mostly to learn piano to a proficient level and to deeper my understanding of jazz composition, theory and harmonization.

Anyways , I’d like to thank you for these well constructed lessons, Jumping from Youtube tutorial to Youtube tutorial was not really helping. This website so far has been the best I’ve seen.
Thanks Again!

  • Gary B.
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Hi Gary and welcome!

In addition to the tutorial on “Tune Up” - also dive straight into these beginner arrangements:

The tutorial on “Tune Up” explains the basics of reading and interpreting lead sheets, but we do also touch upon some more advanced theory and so don’t worry if some of the techniques don’t make sense right now.

In the Beginner Arrangements Course we stick exclusively to roots, 3rds, and 7ths, and so these arrangements are perfect if you are just starting out with jazz piano.

As mentioned in my reply to Toby above, you can also work on multiple courses at the same time. The following 2 courses fit together nicely and so I’d recommend working on these in tandem:

For improvisation check out our ear training and transcription exercises:

https://community.pianogroove.com/c/improvisation-exercises/30

Finally, for composition, we have a dedicated course and also a live seminar:

and

We will be hosting more live seminars on the theme of composition and so if have ideas for topic areas don’t hesitate to let us know.

Cheers!
Hayden

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