Piano day (1h 40m)

Modal studies

  • Lydian DNA in 7th arpeggios
    • LH only
    • LH + alternating shells in RH (gave up pretty quickly, need to approach it slowly)
  • Harmonising Lydian scale in chord pairs around the cycle in growing gaps (Imaj7 — II7, Imaj7 — iii, Imaj7 — #IV, etc. — e. g. C — D, F — A-, Bb — Eø, etc.) — extra cool exercise!

Arpeggios + combined LH & RH melodic studies

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This badass workout achieves three goals:

  • Improve LH technique by drilling the 2-octave arpeggios along with harmonic intervals
  • Think in chord tones and improve key fluency
  • Enjoy the non-boring exercise that actually sounds nice even though you’re still just playing a diatonic pattern around the cycle of goddam fourths

Improv

  • Major blues scale improv in all keys (recap)
    • LH: harmonic 5ths & 6ths
    • Broken 10ths + blocks

Just for the hell of it

  • All Lydian scales (similar & contrary motion)

Piano day (2h)

Left hand + shells

  • Descending major 10ths workout (10-5-1 + 6-7)
    • Only LH
    • With RH: 7-3-5 shells
    • With RH: alternating shells of same chord (7-3-5 to 3-6-9 or 3-7-9) — octave jump
    • With RH: connecting descending shells (cycling 7-3-5 to 3-7-9)

Left hand + modal studies

  • Lydian DNA (Imaj7 — II7) in all keys
    • Blocks
    • LH: 1-5-10-6’-7’ | 1-1’, RH: 7-3-5 shell | 1 octave scale run

Left hand + scale studies

  • Major blues scale recap (LH: broken 10ths, harmonic 5ths and 6ths)

Reading + analysis

  • Fascinating Rhythm by George Gershwin  (first 4 bars, then quick improv over LH pattern) — Exercise #14 from Jazz Piano: The Left Hand book

Observations
I haven’t been practicing too much bass during the last months, as I’m trying to focus in on left hand on piano, but recently I picked it up late at night and simply did some walking over a jazz standard. Then some inversions. Some permutations. Some arpeggios. All that stuff that I though I’ve had enough of. One big takeaway from that? Wanna get excited about seemingly boring material like scales, arpeggios and reading on your instrument? Simply practice another one for a month or so (completely ignoring the first one), and I swear you’ll start CRAVING it! 😂

Piano day (2h)

Chord tones / Left hand / Comping

  • All inversions of 7th chords over standard: All Of Me in G, C
  • 1-5-10-7-1-3-5 LH + Shells over All Of Me in C

Scale studies

  • All Lydian scales

Interpretation

  • Elvis — Can’t Help Falling In Love (1-5-10 + extensions, inversions, voice leading)

Observations

Always build the interpretation up from simple block chords!

Piano day (1h 50m)

  • Improv + scale studies
    • 2-octave Lydian scales in all keys
      • Both hands
      • In harmonic thirds + 1-5 shells in LH
    • C scale in all modes (grand form) — do it in all keys now!
  • Left hand + jazz voicings
    • Intervallic patterns
      • 1-5-10 — (5) — 1-5-10 descent around the cycle of 4ths
        • Special focus on Gb — B — E part where 10th jumps get harder
  • Comping
    • Walking bass (chord tones + passing tones) & shells and inversions over All Of Me in G