i just read an interview with keith jarrett:

as jarrett sees it, moving from the interpretation based world of classical music to the improvisational one of jazz requires a radical shift that shakes the foundations of self. when he performed a lot of mozart in the 80's, he says "i wasn't playing anything other than mozart. i had to become another person." and, he adds, "to teach a classical musician to improvise is almost more impossible than to teach an accountant or plumber to improvise."  

"i once had a conversation with vladimir ashkenazy. we were on a cruise with the english chamber orchestra and i gave him a tape with some recent improvisations. when he had listened to it he said, 'how do you play all the right notes?' i said, "no, you see they just become the right notes bight the virtue of their environment.' then he said 'i'd love to be able to improvise but i know i'd need so much time to get into the right headspace to do that.'  of course he didn't use the word 'headspace.' but he knew he'd have to shut everything down. from where they are you can't get to the improvisation and have it be you, because you've been trained outside of yourself."
There are 26 comments, leave a comment.
fascinating.  i thought jarrett was the one and only pianist capable of playing classical and jazz on a high level.  this leads me to believe even he can only be concentrating on one at a time.  very enlightening.
i enjoyed that little stroll down keith-jarrett-arrogance lane.
"i may not always play the right note, but i play it
right on time." - dizzy gillespie
i would love to hear waltz for debby played by chopin----and chopin`s etude in e major played by bill
it's interesting.  i have a copy of jarrett's video "the art of improvisation" and i found him to be quite a bit more humble than i expected - perhaps a result of reflecting upon his past after his breakdown.
i find jarrett's thoughts quite reasonable. and marian mcpartland enjoyed him when she went to his house to talk and play.
ah yes, when keith went to marian mcpartland's and refused to play anything he didn't have "prepared".  just like a true classical musician.  yes, he's a hypocrite, too.
don't get me wrong -- i think he's a superb musician and one of the finest pianists on the planet.  but in the mensch department, he gets a d.
i did not find keith's thoughts so reasonable, for two reasons:
1.  they are inaccurate.  just about anyone can learn to improvise.  these days, young musicians are being educated more and more to improvise as well as play classical music.  just look at many of the young stars today who obviously have both backgrounds -- taylor eigsti and brad mehldau, to name a few.
2.  they are insulting.  insulting to classical musicians, plumbers, and accountants.  arrogant and insulting.  i doubt that keith even knows any plumbers or accountants.  i know plenty of people in other lines of work that, in their personal time, are superb improvisers and fine artists in many ways.  i feel like he was stereotyping, and he should know better.  but maybe he doesn't.  maybe he's never worked at a regular j-o-b or known any regular people in his entire life.  he pretty much grew up as a prodigy who was handled with kid gloves and supported by others.
maybe he grew out of it, maybe not.
maybe he does not intend his remarks the way they sound, but they sure sound arrogant to a lot of people.
keith is a jerk, everyone knows it.
it's true, keith gets a d in people skills.
but he sure honors the music.  i just wish he didn't
sound like he was shagging the piano.
you all miss the point...just wow
jazz+, what do you think about jarrett's above mentioned quotes?  i tend to agree with cynbad's assessment.  why make a big deal out of improvising v. interpreting written music?  why not embrace both? is one more important than the other?  does one require more skill than the other?  not really, just different skills. i know plenty of people who speak more than one language.  it's fairly common
i'm wondering too...were those comments made prior to his nervous breakdown?  i really think he has grown since then
...and i don't want to come off as a jarrett blaster.  i am just a bit confused by those comments.

to me, jarrett's "my song" is one of the most beautiful tunes i've ever heard.  one could hardly call it jazz though.  in the end, who cares what it's called?  it's beautiful music.  i think this may be where jarrett has been misunderstood.  maybe we shouldn't try so hard to categorize ourselves and each other?
...so...what am i talking about???  who knows...am i nuts or just improvising? :)
i am with jazz+ on this one but i knew it would get to something like this.  this forum proves over and over its majority view on keith jarrett.  and forums are democratic in nature and allow for free speech.
so jazz just like out in the world we have to allow the ku klux klan to freely express its bigoted rascist views in here we have to allow the forum to expres its views about keith jarret and thelonius monk.  even though it seems to take about the same iq as the klan we have no choice in a free forum to take it.  so my solution is to just avoid the topic as much as possable.
sorry jazz+, my comment was unnecessary and irrelevant.  i get what he is saying, though.
jazz+, i actually do "get" what jarrett was saying, and i understand that it comes from his own experience with classical training, and how stifling it can be. i have personally been there and done that.  but, i also think that he's projecting his own experience onto others, and generalizing.
what i take issue with is the way he says things, as he comes off as arrogant and a prima donna, which is unfortunate considering what a beautiful and sensitive (and even spiritual) musician he actually is.

he did a double album years ago called "spirits".  it can still make me cry.
too bad i cannot delete my posts.  i have a hard time remembering not to post when the urge strikes me
there's nothing wrong with your posts.  i enjoy them.
1.  bill evans is dead
   my comment was reffereing to those who are playing now.
2.  even when he was alive.  he was if he was a classical pianist on the level of keith jarrett we will never have any way of verifying it becayse he was not a classical concert pianist and recording artist as keith jarrett is.
if you will all exuse me i am going to sit our the remainder of this thread becuause the ignorance in this forum about keith jarrett the finest jaaz pianist of our time in a forum called "learn jazz piano" is just a  little bit much for me to take.  it and i quote "wows" me.
yep, i agree with you it would be best if you'd leave, come back when you understand the difference between fact and opinion!!

oscar peterson (rip) is/was the finest jazz pianist of our time (my opinion) and he had a classical background too!  

what keith jarrent has "proved" over and over again is that he is an asshole plain and simple!
thank you cynbad.  i enjoy your posts too:)
pardon me but doesn't chick do classical?  seems like i remember
one of the mozart piano concertos in particular, and last time
i checked he was fully alive.
mike  you said the one and only so i maybe? mistook your meaning i will admit i do not know as much of classical background of jarrett`s
playing.i too am sitting the rest of this forum out because of the ignorance here of the playing of bill evans the best of any time
Please sign in to post.

Jazz Piano Notebook Series
Scot Ranney's Jazz Piano Notebook, Volume 1 - jazz piano tricks of the trade

Volume 1 of this educational jazz piano book contains 15 jazz piano exercises, tricks, and other interesting jazz piano techniques, voicings, grooves, and ideas Scot Ranney enjoys playing.

buy pdf version - buy coil binding version - videos

Scot Ranney's Jazz Piano Notebook, Volume 2 - jazz piano tricks of the trade you can use today

Volume 2 has 14 jazz piano exercises and tricks of the trade, and quite a bit of it is Calypso jazz piano related material, including some Monty Alexander and Michel Camilo style grooves. Jazz piano education is through the ears, but books like this can help.

buy pdf version - buy coil binding version

Tim Richards' Jazz Piano Notebook - jazz piano tricks of the trade

Volume 3 contains 12 jazz piano exercises and explorations by the acclaimed jazz piano educator, pianist, author, and recording artist Tim Richards.

Tim wrote the well known "Exploring Jazz Piano" and "Improvising Blues Piano" books and has several others to his name.

buy pdf version - buy coil binding version

Jeff Brent's Jazz Piano Notebook - jazz piano tricks of the trade

Volume 4 is by Jeff Brent, a jazz pianist, composer, teacher, and author of "Modalogy" and other acclaimed jazz theory and education books. In this book Jeff shares detailed analysis of transcriptions of live performances. He covers everything from the shape of the songs to the tricks and licks he uses in improvised lines to the ideas behind his lush chord voicings.

buy pdf version - buy coil binding version

Most Recent Discussions
Great Resource for Jazz Pianists
Scale in Calderazzo solo
analyzing Someone To Watch Over Me
Site updates
Korg SV-1 vs Nord Electro
Brad Brad Mehldau's independant left hand

Piano for Adoption Scam
Aprender Jazz en Piano
Oh Tannenbaum for Jazz Piano
Volume 5 of the "Jazz Piano Notebook Series" is Available!
LearnJazzPiano.com File Downloads News

Top Sheetmusic Picks

Jazzy Christmas Arrangements
Cocktail Piano
Best Songs Ever, 6th Edition
Christmas Medley
Moana Songbook
Late Night Jazz Piano

Jazz piano education is cool.

be the main character in your own story

Rock on. Follow your passion.

Sign In

privacy policyterms of serviceabout • 50,655 messages 63,069 accounts 57,093 logins
LearnJazzPiano.com Copyright © 1995-2022 by Scot Ranney • website software and design by scot's scripts
LearnJazzPiano.com is For Sale - Serious Inquiries Only