Perhaps in the German there for a second. I must be channeling Stackhouse there somebody. Where was I. Oh, yeah.
Another basic practice technique to help you learn to handle chord changes is to use approach notes. You see, jazz is a very destination oriented music.
Most of the interest comes from going somewhere and not from what you do when you get there. Let us start very simple and deal with the roots of this chord progression here.
Now, what we are going to do is approach the roots from a half step below. We will use this root, this approach sounds like this, and now you should play along if possible.
Okay now, let us approach to the roots from a half step above. Again try and play along with this if you can.
Okay now, next, let us use a two note approach to the root. Use this rhythm here. Okay, we will start two half steps below the root. Sounds like this.
Okay, now let us do two half steps about the root.
Okay, now let us do half step above, half step below, why not.
Okay, you see when you are improvising, you are constantly asking the questions where am I going and how am I going to get there.
Now, you may not be conscious of this but that is what you are doing. When you use approach notes, you are answering both of this questions. Where am I going, the root, the third and like or whatever it is.
How am I get in there? Two half steps above, or half step below or nine half steps above or something.
Now, at this stage, the answers are really pretty simple. We can start to make things more complex simply by maybe approaching the thirds of the chords instead of the roots.
Now we just did the roots here just to show you how to go about it because we do not really have time here to go through all the possibilities step by step.
I want to give you an example of how you might build an exercise. We are going to approach the thirds instead of the roots.
Now then, because there are Minor and Major thirds present, we got Minor chords and dominants.
Let us do this, let us approach the minor thirds from two half steps above. Either thirds from two half steps below.
Now here is what this sounds like if I can actually do this, let us see.
Using two different approaches is just one level of complexity.
You can also have different destinations which depend on chord quality like approaching the seventh on all Major chords or the fifth on all dominants and the third on all the Minors or whatever combination you can think of.
You need to be able to approach the root, third, fifth, or seventh or every chord using everyone or two note approach that we looked at.
Now, if you get all that together, here is one more approach to try. It is a three note approach. It consists of two half steps above the target and a half step below. See that? You should save this one until you master the others.
Anytime you come across unfamiliar or difficult chord progressions, you can use this approach note technique to master. I will tell you, it works great every single time.