An Ideal Practice Session
- Listen to a classic piece of jazz to get in the mood.
- Warm up with scales, jazz chords both solid and broken, and for advanced players arpeggios, All in a logical and thoughtful manner. Don’t rush through this step. Use a metronome.
- Practice a jazz etude from a jazz theory book or YouTube video.
- Play over a feel-good piece of your repertoire before getting down to the difficult work. Remind yourself of your progress to date.
- Practice transposing a simple lick into as many keys as you know.
- Spend a little time analysing a jazz standard, mark the form and the ii-V progressions, noting which keys they relate to.
- Pick a tune from your repertoire to focus on. Play the melody with a recording, trying to mimic what you hear. Better yet learn a melody by ear.
- Play through the broken chords on each chord of the piece.
- Practice the scales associated with each chord.
- Mimic the recording again.
- Practice comping the chords first with a metronome, then with the recording. Transpose as needed.
- Listen to some more jazz.
- Sight read chord progressions from your fake book.
- Finish up playing some completed repertoire to keep it fresh. Record this portion of practice and listen back.
- Don’t follow this list in order, bounce around.