In this second class on comping we’ll look at ballads and jazz waltzes and the types of comping that work well for each. Tunes will include My Romance, In A Sentimental Mood, Emily and West Coat Blues. On ballads, chordal fills will be demonstrated along with the integration of single notes and double stops in appropriate places backing the melody. Voice leading with usage of upper structure triads and passing chords will be shown using both rootless voicings and conventional drop 2 and drop 3 shapes. On jazz waltzes we’ll add aspects of rhythmic displacement and the use of half notes to create “over the bar line” phrasing. Also we’ll continue with essential tone comping and expanding the voicings to include extra notes. Some of the phrases that are included in the written examples are reminiscent of Ed Bickert and Jim Hall’s comping. Having a clear idea of voice leading through chord changes along with rhythmic diversity and swing, will make comping more effective, creative and fun!

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Class Content

Comping Concepts Part Two: Ballads and Jazz Waltz
Comping Concepts Part Two: Ballads and Jazz Waltz 01:31:00

Course Reviews


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  1. Profile photo of Martin Blanes


    Wow! If you are bored of the way you comp this is really your class! Also it is if you have felt envy of this beautiful compings piano players do. It helps lots to scape from the "grip system sindrome" guitar players use to fall in.

    Very clearly and neatingly written examples. It is like fresh air to my playing 😉

    ~ Martin Blanes (December 12, 2008)

  2. Profile photo of James S.


    There aren’t enough stars there for this class!! such great material so well presented, I just finished it, and I can’t recommend it enough. I now have a ring binder of nothing but Mike’s Masterclass material, and that, plus the stuff from David Oakes/Jimmy Wyble gives me all I need to get the ideas I have had but did not know how to express.

    ~ james seaberry (November 17, 2008)

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