Playing in a band

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Msen, Jul 16, 2015.

  1. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

    Aug 16, 2009
    Jackson NC
    IMO the foregoing "singing a tune" in your mind only works when you are performing the lead part. If you are assigned a harmony part it's otherwise.
  2. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    The most excellent of suggestions! This is how many a fine player learned to improvise back in the days before Abersold or Baker. That, and transcribing solos.
  3. Branson

    Branson Piano User

    Jan 16, 2011
    No one has a bands available when wanting to practice improvisation so the next best thing is recorded music.

    Type in the style of jazz you would like to practice in YouTube or any of the Free Jazz radio stations.

    Set aside about 30 minutes a day to play along with every tune that comes up and after a month or two, you'll feel comfortable jamming with most bands you run into.

    Playing drums and improvising on a melodic instrument is like night and day.
    As a drummer, you are more conscious of structure and time and as a trumpet player you are more conscious of harmonic and melodic ideas.
  4. Msen

    Msen Piano User

    Dec 28, 2011
    I live in the Horn
    Hey guys, thanks for your replies but my original question was not about improvisation. I just want to feel confident that the note I am playing fits the chord that is being played by the band.

    I quess I'll just have to do it the hard way with a band, in rehearsal.

    The weird thing is that if I jam with a sax player I can instantly say that the note I am playing is the wrong/correct one. Wrong notes are so obvious.

    On the other hand, if I jam with a guitar player I am sort of lost. Not quite sure whether I am doing good or not
  5. Dennis78

    Dennis78 Fortissimo User

    Feb 1, 2015
    How about just ask the guitarist what key he's playing in and follow the changes. It's not wrong to ask! And it's probably easier to hear the single note a sax makes then an entire chord at once. Learn the keys and hear them. Not saying you don't know your keys but just sayin. By the way tread thread guys
  6. nieuwguyski

    nieuwguyski Forte User

    Aug 9, 2004
    Santa Cruz County, CA
    If you're making up a part on the fly, you're improvising. It sounds like you're trying to improvise background lines in a non-jazz sort of group. My biggest piece of advice would be think in terms of "horn lines" -- as in choose your spots with care and don't play all the time. Keep in mind that drummers, keyboard players, guitarists, bass players, and to a certain extent sax players can all play a constant barrage of notes a lot longer than most brass players. And if you have more than one or two horns all trying to improvise parts all the time it's probably going to either sound like trad jazz or horns warming up while a rock band plays.

    While it may not be the style you're trying to play, it sounds like working on your jazz improv is the fastest way to address the problem you're having. To me, it sounds like you need to hear another player playing linear, scalar lines to get a good idea of what you should be playing, and that you have problems when playing with a non-line-playing, chordal instrument. And that's what Abersold recordings and Band-in-a-Box will help you work on: Making up your own lines over chords with no other melodic lines to follow.
  7. tjcombo

    tjcombo Mezzo Forte User

    Nov 12, 2012
    Melbourne, Australia
    Lots of great advice above.

    I presume you're talking about jamming with a guitar playing chords? You might want to try using a smartphone app like Chordbot. You can set it up to loop over a chord progression and play along. Eventually you'll find licks that work. Even start with a "progression" of one chord. Go crazy, no one is listening but you!
  8. Lionelsax

    Lionelsax Mezzo Piano User

    May 8, 2013
    You could learn a chordal instrument, a guitar or a piano, the piano is more useful, it shows how things work.
    You can learn a tune on the piano, play the chord progression.
    It is the best way to learn a tune or a kind of tune with similar structures or kind of.
  9. edfitzvb

    edfitzvb Forte User

    Jun 10, 2008
    Woodlawn, VA
    Be comfortable in keys with lots of sharps. Guitar players love them.
    E is your F#, and guitar players are very comfortable in E. Over the years I have become pretty comfortable in F#
    For that very reason I have an old King Liberty. Keys that are problematic become more manageable in A. F# becomes F, e.g.
  10. Lionelsax

    Lionelsax Mezzo Piano User

    May 8, 2013
    Man, if your horn is in A, you play in G for E tune... Not in F.

Share This Page