March 2, 2013: Frank Griffith

Many thanks to Frank Griffith for a challenging session in which we covered:

“2-5-1’s in 6 (more) keys” by Frank Griffith
“Road Song” by Wes Montgomery
“Holland Park” by Frank Griffith

In a well attended session, Frank gave us a little warm up exercise consisting of a series of six ii-V-I’s descending in fifths; we all took two solo’s over the form. This was a little more tricky than perhaps it should be (for me anyway), and this has been added to my practice routine.

The excellent “Road Song” was given a run through with the A section being taken relatively straight and the bridge being taken as swing. This was more comfortable territory for most attendees.

The last tune of the session “Holland Park” was a great composition in 3/4 penned by Frank himself that consisted of a modal section followed by a trickier chordal one.

During the course of the session Frank noted that a lot of us were taking solos using as many notes as possible, whereas we might be better off taking a simple idea of say a triad and playing with that.

A first at the Cambridge Jazz Co-op was a “tap” solo from one of the attendees. Great stuff.

Thanks again to Frank for an entertaining session.

January 26, 2013: Nick Page

Many thanks to Nick Page for an interesting session that included the following songs:

“West Coast Blues” by Wes Montgomery
“Road Song” by Wes Montgomery

Nick is passionate about effective use of practise time and opined that any practise session should have a goal be it small or large so that by its end you have learnt something new that can then be applied to your playing.

In this co-op session he considered taking a simple digital pattern and applying it to each chord of a song in turn, for example “3, 4, 5, 7”, “5, 3, Root” or “#9, b9, #9”. Different rhythms can be employed to create more interest.