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Stalling

Here is something particular: why would you want to show to your teacher something you didn’t prepare? I get into this kind of situation all the time: The student is supposed to do a rock beat from a page, one that I have demonstrated for him on video the week before, one
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Close your eyes

There are a million ways to listen to music. Actually, all day long, whether we are in our car, in a restaurant or an elevator: some kind of music will be playing. The form of music we are most familiar with is the one coming at us while we are doing something else. Something
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What moves us

Monk was once asked if his hat was influential in the way he played. He said: “No!… Yes!… I don’t know!”. The answer is hard to understand because the question is hard to understand too. It’s a package thing. But now, let’s say that Monk
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Season change

We, in Chicago, have been going through a very rough winter. Now, this is not to say that it has been easy everywhere else. Yesterday, it was snowing in Las Vegas, for example! But in good ol’ Chicago, we’ve gone severe, we’ve gone berserk. We went to a polar
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Just play!

I happen to play 5 different instruments. Drum, Piano, Voice, Bass and Guitar. I just listed the order of proficiency I’ve got on them. I am the best on drums and the worse on guitar. But I practice each instrument as much as I can. And I never neglect the drums or the
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Improvisation. Part 2

I am a drum and piano teacher. And I teach improvisation on both instruments. It is a lot of fun. I’m pretty good at it, but I also know there are things I can’t teach. I can go step by step and tailor the progression to everyone personality and abilities. I can
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Improvisation part 1

Improvisation used to be a tenant of American music. Almost every instrumentalist was required to play a little something on his or her own. Yes, I am talking about Jazz. Or Blues. Then, in the beginning of the 50’s, rock and roll changed that landscape. Band would go on
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Teenage years

I remember being a teenager and listening to music while contemplating the ceiling. I liked what my parents liked, mainly. French singers and composers: Jacques Brel, Jacques Higelin, Bernard Lavilliers. Artists of the time. I am surprised today to still listen to those old
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Nervous

My family band had a gig last Friday, January 25th. We played at Sully’s, a very nice place where they gave us a big room for a big crowd. The owner even let me set up the gear around noon, when we were scheduled to play at 8 pm. Like I said: a very nice place. Yet I was
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