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EWI or keyboard for late night quiet improv practice and learninging

1250 Views 5 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  MM
Title is a quickie summary: I feel am on the right track to learn to play jazz on the sax however I can't quite practice as much as I wish in the interest of domestic tranquility. I had a few years of piano lessons a billion years ago but have no technique left. If I took up keyboard, it would take a while to learn basic technique before getting to the point where it would be any help with playing jazz saxophone. Correct me if I am wrong. OTOH the keyboard may be more beneficial for things such as arranging, playing lines against chords, possibly for transcribing solos, etc. For sure many of the jazz greats such as Diz, Miles, Tom Harrell and many others whom I forget worked things out on piano. I suspect the fingering of the EWI is something I could quickly learn. However I have heard that too much time on the EWI can give one bad habits such as playing without breath support. lazy fingers etc. I am susceptible to RSI; perhaps a keyboard instrument is less likely to bother a sax player because it is so different. Comments/suggestions?
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Unless you plan to use the EWI as an additional voice for doubling, I would vote w/o hesitation for learning basic keyboard. You will need to put some time but it will slowly come and it will make you a far better musician. You don't need to be a proficient pianist just learn simple chords. On the Lt hand emphasize on the Root 3rd and 7th or 5th 3rd and 7th. Voice lead from chord to chord accordingly. Melody on the Rt hand. If you want, w/ the Rt hand free fingers you could add a voice extension but that is not necessary as the melody should evoke these.
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