#1
I figured this would be the best place to ask this question since it involves difficulty of composition and the like. I recently purchased a copy of the 6th edition of the Real Book to start learning some Jazz tunes and things. That being said my exposure to the genre is growing and I am not familiar with all of the songs in the book.

In terms of technicality/difficulty what are a few beginning, intermediate, and more advanced songs that y'all would recommend? I am curious about both lead and rhythm and was interested in learning more popular pieces.
A day without sunshine is like, you know, night.
- Steve Martin
#2
Pick a few tracks and listen to them a lot, listen to as many different versions as you can. The first step to really learning anything is to get the sound in your head.
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#3
There's a handful of standard tunes that are all pretty easy, and you can look them up quicker than I could list them all (Autumn Leaves, Stella by Starlight, All the Things You Are, All of Me, and lots more).

Great thing about standards is that you can make them more challenging as you improve. There are versions of "Autumn Leaves" played at 60bpm with really easy chords, and then are recordings of Miles Davis doing the same tune at like 240bpm and just ripping the whole time with crazy dense harmonies and solos.

Some stuff is inherently more difficult, like fusion stuff by Return to Forever, Pat Metheny, or Al DiMeola, but I'd worry about that stuff later. It's fun to listen to, but can be challenging even for advanced players.

But the big point with jazz isn't to be technically good at playing the melody, it's to understand how the harmony works, because very different from anything you'd find in rock music. The hardest part is really internalizing the songs.
Last edited by cdgraves at Jun 16, 2014,
#4
Quote by cdgraves
There's a handful of standard tunes that are all pretty easy, and you can look them up quicker than I could list them all (Autumn Leaves, Stella by Starlight, All the Things You Are, All of Me, and lots more).

Great thing about standards is that you can make them more challenging as you improve. There are versions of "Autumn Leaves" played at 60bpm with really easy chords, and then are recordings of Miles Davis doing the same tune at like 240bpm and just ripping the whole time with crazy dense harmonies and solos.

Some stuff is inherently more difficult, like fusion stuff by Return to Forever, Pat Metheny, or Al DiMeola, but I'd worry about that stuff later. It's fun to listen to, but can be challenging even for advanced players.

But the big point with jazz isn't to be technically good at playing the melody, it's to understand how the harmony works, because very different from anything you'd find in rock music. The hardest part is really internalizing the songs.


Thats true, I hadn't thought of it that way. I have been working on Blue Bossa and Chitlins con carne and I can see how they both could become fairly intense.

Thanks for the tip!
A day without sunshine is like, you know, night.
- Steve Martin