Jazz Workshop II Video up on Youtube

Here is a clip from the workshop a few weeks ago, Jazz Workshop II, where we broke down and analyzed one of the etudes from the new books, “Going Bach Home,” based on “Indiana.” Here I go line by line explaining how I applied some Bachian concepts and specific Bach Shapes to the tune. Check it out, I’ll post a clip from Jazz Workshop III soon!

Bach Shapes Etudes ebook up for Preorder Now!

In my first year of Berklee, there was an eccentric piano player that lived down the hall in the dorms who was obsessed with Bach. I didn’t get it at the time, and I remember saying to him that “Bach just sounds like a bunch of predictable sequences” or something like that. 20 years later I’m putting out a bunch of books on Bach sequences. Anyway!

The new book covers are almost done,

and the books are up for preorder now at jondelucia.com/shop. You can also still buy the original Bach Shapes print edition for only $10, though you may have to purchase them separately from any preorders, due to the way the system is set up. The Etudes books are going to be officially out on Bach’s (updated) birthday of March 31st. It will be his 336th birthday, 3+3+6 = 12 etudes. They include playalong audio, recorded by a great NYC band, that will be linked to once you download the book.

There are 7 pages of analysis, breaking down which shapes were used to construct the etudes.

10 of the 12 are based on standard progressions. They are:

  • All The The Things You Are
  • Just You, Just Me
  • Autumn Leaves
  • Love Me or Leave Me
  • Gone With The Wind
  • Just Friends
  • All of Me
  • How Deep is the Ocean?
  • Lady Bird
  • Indiana (Donna Lee)

Some preliminary feedback:

“I really like these!”

“the chord outlining in the melody and the way leaps between octaves are incorporated, make it super helpful for practicing finger evenness and center-of-pitch clarity”

“yeah man”

And some recent performances by friends:

Preorder here:

Workshop III: Bach Loops plus sale on physical merchandise.

Well, after ten years we are moving to a new place. I’ve amassed quite a bit of stuff over the years and now would be a great time to pick up a print edition of Bach Shapes One, or any of my CD releases, at up to half off. This is also to clear the way for the FIVE, count ’em, FIVE new releases coming out this spring, starting with Bach Shapes: The Etudes on March 31st in four transpositions. More on that later!

Next bit of news, I am going to do my next Zoom workshop on Friday March 12, from noon to 1:30 EST. Sign up below by scrolling down to the calendar, clicking on the date, then time. Register to get a recording even if you can’t make it. Some feedback from the last two sessions:

“There are precious little tidbits in these videos”

“That was fun! It’s inspiring to hear your analysis”

“I really get a lot from these talks”

It’s great to be able to interact and take questions. The topic for this meeting will be Technical Practice. To discuss this I’m going to be referring to a chapter in the new book called “Bach Loops.” These are short looping technically challenging parts, directly out of Bach’s music and sometimes altered. I will address:

  • Outlining, the methods of teacher Abby Whiteside, which I discuss here: Jazz Ideas 6: Outlining
  • Inclusive intervals, ways to approach wide intervals
  • Releasing tension through repetition
  • How I practice this in my daily routine
  • Doubling on clarinet and/or flute
  • Basic image, imagining the music before you play it
  • Whatever else comes up!

Registering will also get you a discount code to use towards the new books, which will be available very soon!

Sign up open for the next Zoom Workshop and Paul Desmond Analysis

Well we had a great time on Friday in the Zoom session. Here is a short outtake of a few spots:

I’d like to try the next one on February 25 at 11am EST. This time on writing jazz lines with Bach’s Shapes. Topics will include:

  • voice leading, adapting Bach’s sensibilities to jazz line building
  • bebop language
  • use of tensions and “color” notes
  • doubling on flute, clarinet and saxophone
  • phrasing
  • polyrhythm and irregular phrase lengths

Same system, donation based, $10-20 sliding scale. We’ll talk about ideas in the new book, or just about playing in general. You’ll get the recording afterwards and you’ll have plenty of chances to ask questions. The class will run 1.5 hours again. Sign up below!

And if you’re here for the PDF of Paul Desmond’s “Wintersong” solo, here it is!


Zoom Workshop Friday February 12th!

I’m going to do my first Zoom workshop on Friday February 12th at 11am. I’ll be talking a bit about Bach Shapes, my books, and also on learning tunes and how those two things go together. Since it’s Lunar New Year I think we’ll go with a moon theme, maybe you can decide which tunes we work on:

Blue Moon
I Wished On the Moon
Moonlight in Vermont
What A Little Moonlight Can do

We’ll see how to navigate chords as a monophonic instrument, how to find the right recordings and scores to learn from, and how to use the melody as our skeleton to hang everything on as we improvise. You can register for free below to confirm your slot and I’ll send the link as we get closer. The workshop will be a suggested donation of $10-20, and will run 1.5 hours. Looking very much forward to it!