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Hey, i was wondering if anyone could offer tips or help to some problems ive been having iwht improving,

one of them is losing my place while soloing, ive been working on this for a LONG time, but only minimal improvements i guess
it seems to me, as soon as i try to play something slightly more complicated like eithnotes or when i focus on what im playing too much, i lose my spot in the form or chord changes. some ppl have suggested "listening" to changes and Hearing where you are, but i just cant do it! even sometimes in a basic blues i have trouble hearing exactly what chord we're on, i have to sorta count to keep my place. I wana be able to like just flip to anywher in a blues for example and know where i am.

Another problem is just vocabulary, which obviously is just listening and transcribing, but once u have a lick down for instance how do u analyze it and learn to use it without just forcing it in there when u see a corrospoding chord change? Sometimes i dont even no what chords the lick is played over because its a song i'm not too familiar with, ive jsut figured out the notes only?

how do u figure out how to use it ? do u just look at the notes in the lick and see which chord/scale they fit into and assume its that chord?:?

Any kinda excercises or tips would be greatly appreciated
Thank you.
 

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Asaxfone,
Do you play any piano or guitar? One way to help you to remember where you are in the harmony is to learn the changes on a chording instrument........daryl
 

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If you don't play piano or guitar get a recording of tune in question. Play it over and over (I mean a lot) then get out the lead sheet follow along. Try to memorize changes What kind of tune is it? Is it AABA? if so work on only the A sections first then the bridge. Without lead sheet say the changes with recording as they go by. If you really really know the changes then its much harder to get lost.
 

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RE: Losing your place in the progression: SING!!!! Sing the roots of the chords with a play-a-long recording. Use your horn or a piano to find the notes if you need help. Ultimately you HAVE to be able to hear the progression and follow it by ear, and the best way to really get in in your head/ear is to sing.

RE: Applying licks: When first learning a lick, it's fine to very self-consciously plug that lick into the right places in a chord progression. The goal is to familiarize yourself not only with what the lick sounds like, but how it sounds over the chords. If you have a lick and you don't know where it fits, check the recording, and count the measures in the form of the tune. Figure out which measure of the form that lick appears in, and then figure out what chord(s) are being sounded (preferably by ear, or by checking a lead sheet).

For these and other questions, the over-arching answer is always to listen more. You're basically saying that you are having trouble navigating and applying this language. And in order to learn the language well enough to sound authentic, you have to listen to the masters speak the language.
 

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I will probably get flamed for what I about to say but I am gonna say it anyway so here goes *puts on body armour*

Forget about the changes and what the 'right' notes to play are get a recording of the tune (or play along) and listen to it, sing over it. Get familiar with the feel of the form, even if you can't sing the tonic sing a note that fits. I would then follow the leadsheet through with my horn. I used to also listen to music in bed with leadsheets and hum the melody through the changes.

Then apply all of the other stuff after you get really familiar with how the tune sounds.

I used to have a very similar problem, I was classically schooled and if someone put a leadsheet in front of me I couldn't even count to 4 and follow it through to the end. I could read a page covered in dots fine, but if they were taken away from me, I used to almost pee my pants. I was really embarrassed about not being able to do it, so I didn't tell my teacher at the time, I spent hours listening and singing, I would sing the forms of tunes everywhere I walked (I must have looked like a psychopath) until I got the feel of the tune in my head.

Listen all the time, learning the words to tunes might help (if there is words) and sing them.
 

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I just came back from the jazz camp (I had Pierre Vaiana and Mike Rossi as teacher), and they said that if you want to learn to improvise over a song, you have to learn to play a walking bass line over the chords first. Also do this without any rythm section and with a metronome. Soon as you are able to play the walking bass line, improvising will get a lot easier, aswell as knowing where you are in the song...
 
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