Saturday, October 30, 2010

Harmony, the elephant in the room

Hey everyone,
I just wanted to talk about something I've been working on the last year or so. I've been working on piano, attempting to learn some standard tunes, working on voicings, and trying to blow over the changes.
For a long time I've been trying to avoid it, but I think to throughly participate in music (especially jazz) we drummers have to tackle learning about the harmony. It's a vast world and there's tons of stuff to do to even be mediocre, but I think it's vital. Jerry Fuller, Andre White, and Jack DeJohnette are just 3 examples of drummers who actually know the changes, and I think it's positive effects are shown in their playing. One interesting result for me is when I'm jamming with other drummers while I'm playing piano, I think I appreciate how they contribute and support the music, rather than just listening to their 'drumistics". Certainly an eye opener for me.

Alright, I've got to get going. One 2 5 1 lick isn't going to cut it.......

Then I have to learn how to play the drums!

1 comment:

  1. I couldn't agree more Ted...

    I've always been a hack piano player and done all my composing/arranging at the piano but my melodic/harmonic perspective changed dramatically when I took up the vibraphone a few years ago.

    Maybe we should put a band together of drummers playing other instruments?

    Forever onwards!