Gershwin’s reversed stride bass and best practice moments

Scale studies

  • All Lydian scales
  • All Ionian scales in contrary motion
  • Lydian scales dissection over moving arpeggiated inversions (C, F, Bb)

Left hand

  • Gershwin’s reversed stride bass — study + applying (from Jazz Piano: The Left Hand by Riccardo Scivales
IMG_0536 2
Yes, the notes I make in my textbooks look exactly as they look here 😆


I was studying a fragment from the Gershwin piece today where he uses a particular bass pattern, and it felt so satisfying to finally get it: ah, that’s what he’s doing here! After half an hour of meandering it just clicked. Probably the best moment in piano practice: when you’re slowly digging your way through the piece, dreaded by all the sheet music, and it feels so weird and complicated, and then — bam! — the logic kicks in and you realise what exactly is happening here. And then you can just play it without even looking at the sheet music.

Session timing: 1h 45m

Piano day (1h)

Jazz voicings + Left hand

  • ii — V — I m & M in 1-5-10 & shells
  • Minor to dominant in 1-5-10 + 4 + 7 around the cycle (only left hand)
  • Generic voicings (circle + ii — V7 — Is — C, F, Bb) — from Voicings for Jazz Keyboard by Frank Mantooth

Scale studies

  • All major & minor scales recap

Piano day (1h 30m)

Blues day!

  • Improvisation (Dan Haerle — Jazz Improvisation for Keyboard Players)
    • Lesson 11: Blues progressions
      • C blues scale over:
        • I — IV — V in 3-7-9 — 7-3-6 voicings
        • 12-bar major blues (in 3-7-9 — 7-3-6)
        • 12-bar minor blues (in 3-5-7-9 — 7-9-3-5 — 7-1-3-b5 — 7-b5-7-9 — 7-b9-3-5 — etc.)
      • Mixo, Dorian and Harmonic minor scales over:
        • I —  IV — V
        • 12-bar major blues
        • 12-bar minor blues
      • Mixing up C blues scale with corresponding Mixo / Dorian / Harmonic minor scales over the same progressions


Finally, I’m progressing at jazz pian improvisation ! Mr. Haerle, sir, you’re the best! 😃