Right now I am studying jazz and have learned about soling through changes based on chord tones. So can anyone recommend me some songs that would help me get these ideas down.
a Real Book will provide you with many standards that are a staple of jazz material..a list of songs would be very long indeed..

my personal faves are the works of Gershwin and Cole Porter..who wrote some timeless tunes with great melodies, lyrics and rich harmonies..some more modern writers Paul Simon Billy Joel have tunes that are influenced by the great writers of the past..

do some research and be surprised
play well

I Got Rhythm, my dude. If you learn any song, make it I Got Rhythm. If you start playing jazz with other people, you may hear them hear them say something like, "oh, that song? It's just rhythm changes in B" or whatever. That means it's the same shit as I Got Rhythm, just transposed to B. Rhythm changes crop up with alarming frequency all across the jazz repertoire. Also try Autumn Leaves and Have You Met Miss Jones because they're basically just a stream of ii-V progressions, which also crop up with alarming frequency. Lastly try Minor Swing because it's fairly commonly played and really easy to rip on so you'll feel like a badass.

Don't dive into the Real Book right off the bat. A lot of it is going to be difficult and intimidating. And also you don't want to be relying on the Real Book right off the bat. Try figuring those tunes out by ear first, and then go online/to the Real Book only when you're thoroughly stumped. You don't want to be dependent on the real book. There are people out there who can sightread like animals but if you asked them to just feel out a tune they can't because they expect the Real Book to feed them information.

Jazz is hard.
+1 for I Got Rhythm as a first tune.

Next should probably be Autumn Leaves, for a chord cycle in a minor key.

Also try:

Satin Doll
Blue Bossa

I agree a Real Book can be daunting (so many tunes, so little time!), but it's important to learn the melody of any tune you're going to solo on.
Chord tones - as you know - are the foundation of any phrase, but the melody (itself tied closely to chord tones) presents you with one tried-and-tested route through the changes! Use it to steal ideas from - it's how all the great old jazz improvisers worked: begin by embellishing the melody.
Last edited by jongtr at Nov 28, 2015,
Most important tunes to know in my experience are the following:

I Got Rhythm (Or any contrafact of Rhythm Changes harmony)
Any Blues tune (There are tons of jazz blues tunes out there, and there is bound to be atleast one per jam session)
Any Minor Blues
All The Things You Are/Satin Doll/Autumn Leaves (Or any other tunes that features a ton of ii-V's)

Happy Jazzin'
Fusion and jazz musician, a fan of most music.

Quote by Guthrie Govan
“If you steal from one person it's theft, and if you steal from lots of people it's research”

Quote by Chick Corea
"Only play what you hear. If you don't hear anything, don't play anything."
Going back to the old, old standards is a good way to get the jazz sound. I'm not a big jazzer, but I keep some standards in my repertoire to keep that sound alive in my playing.

Louis Armstrong, Johnny Mercer, Jerome Kern, Cole Porter, Duke Ellington... all those old players and composers from the 30s and 40s really established the harmonic basis of classic jazz. You can spend a lifetime on just those tunes.

And definitely do get a Real Book or some other collection of standards. You have to memorize and internalize songs to get the sound into your playing, and always use your ears before your eyes, but the book is an indispensable reference. Also good to practice reading chord charts on sight.
Last edited by cdgraves at Nov 29, 2015,