About the Website
As the name implies, this website is all about Jazz (...and piano...though the theory is translatable to any other instrument).
Jazz is a broad and complex genre of music which can be challenging to grasp. It's difficult to even know where to start. This is where thejazzpianosite.com steps in.
My goal in creating this website is to help those who are interested in learning to play and appreciate Jazz. It tries to combine both practical and theoretical aspects, so that you will be able to play Jazz, but also understand why the thing you are playing sounds good (or bad).
This website is further supplemented and complemented by the Walk That Bass YouTube Channel
How to Use this Website
This website is structured like a Jazz Theory & Practice course. Each lesson covers a specific concept which is further developed and expanded upon in future lessons. This step-by-step approach starts from the basics and goes all the way through to advanced. Nevertheless, this website does presume a minimal level of music theory and technical knowledge (notes, beat, rhythm, etc.). As such, this website is designed for people with at least a basic understanding of music theory and technical ability who are interested in learning Jazz.
In each tutorial, I present a theoretical concept and show you how to apply it in practice, with real examples wherever possible. Each written lesson is accompanied by an equivalent video lesson to show how it works and sounds in practice. Because, after all, actually hearing music is much more meaningful than just reading about it.
My Philosophy and Teaching Style
There are already plenty of Music Theory and Jazz Piano websites out there, so why add to the cacophony of the internet? Well, because I personally find most of them: too basic, poor quality, too academic, unnecessarily pseudo-philosophical, or too expensive. When I first started diving into Jazz, I was unable to find good quality, free material. The free stuff was too simple and the advanced stuff was too expensive (I was a broke student at the time).
I wanted some practical and clear material to teach me how to play Jazz without obfuscating about 'needing to find your own sound' or 'needing to really mean what you play', etc. And so I created this website for that very reason. I try to keep my lessons as short, explicit, practical and direct as possible, and keep the philosophising to a minimum (though, it is sometimes unavoidable).
Music and education should not just be limited to those who can afford it (forgive my Socialism). As such, I make all my lessons (with no exceptions) 100% free. No need for subscriptions or memberships. No 3 minute teaser video which then asks you for your credit card details. All completely and utterly FREE (though there may be an occasional plea for donations. Apologies in advance).
I am not a professional musician; I don't have a PhD in Musicology; I didn't even study music at University; nor am I from New Orleans; though I can swing dance a bit. I'm just a guy who likes Jazz. Make of that what you will. I play a bit of guitar and harmonica (I also like the Blues) but my main instrument is (as this website suggests) piano.
I've been playing piano for over two decades, starting with Classical Music. I completed the formal practical and theoretical examinations and all that jazz (excuse the pun), but gradually I drifted towards Jazz (and Blues). I've had some private lessons, but primarily I learned Jazz through self-study - reading, transcribing, listening and playing.
I started making Jazz Piano Tutorials on YouTube in late 2015, which eventually grew into this website. This is still very much a work in progress and there is still a lot I want to cover, so apologies in advance for the long term nature of this project. But I do hope you find these lessons enjoyable and helpful.
Walk That Bass