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Resources for Learning Jazz

Post by: Pablo Beltran

Saxophone is my passion from the time when I was in high school, since then I have dedicated my life to learning and teaching woodwinds. From the beginning, I fell in love with the sound of John Coltrane and began to look for how to imitate that sound. I became a jazz fanatic! I wanted to know all the records and play everywhere possible. Jazz has always been 100% fun for me. Now, I not only want to imitate Coltrane, but also have found other heroes such as Michael Brecker or Chris Potter.

Learning to play like these jazz masters living in Colombia was a challenge, but the videos of Learn Jazz Standards helped me a lot. The material on this site allowed me to understand how to improvise. Even though the author, Brent Vaartstra, is not a saxophone teacher nor woodwinds, he explains very clearly the process to acquire a good jazz language. The site also has videos for all skill levels. My favorites are the ones geared toward beginners because they help you understand the process of how to learn.

In my lessons, I like to teach music by listening and imitating. I think it's the best way to immediately sound like your idols. It doesn't matter if you want to learn pop, jazz, or classical - if you learn to imitate them, you will automatically sound good. The best saxophone lessons I have ever had were actually from listening to and imitating records. I learned this philosophy from Bob Reynolds. Bob’s blog covers many interesting topics, such as how to practice while on tour and other things that we all want to know but may not have the courage to ask for. 


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