Blues in 6ths Lesson 1



Blues in 6ths Lesson 1 is a lesson that came about from my interactions with a Skype student about using greater intervals in his playing. There was a lack of larger intervals in his playing that was very apparent so I assigned him a blues to practice just using the intervals of a 6th. He came back the next week and played the assignment pretty well but I noticed that he was missing a lot of the resolutions and the note choices felt to haphazard and random instead of melodic and decisive.

As I thought about it, I had the idea of working backwards with the concept. Not starting with just practicing the scales in 6ths but actually playing the changes of a blues and applying the 6ths interval melodically to those changes. The idea being that the student would get a better grasp of the interaction between this 6th interval and the harmony and then in future lessons we could add more complexity to the lines. As I prepared the lesson PDF and started practicing through it I immediately noticed a change in my own playing that included this interval much more. I believe practicing this lesson builds an awareness of this interval that many players really don’t think about or consider. The 6th interval can be very beautiful and melodic sounding when used in the right way.

I teach you how to practice this concept with the play along provided as well as showing you some ways to deepen and broaden the concept by adding some approaches to these intervals so you get the most “bang for your buck” out of your practice time. All the examples are demonstrated on the soprano saxophone. (31 Minute Video Lesson, PDF in Bb, Eb and C, play along of a Bb Organ Trio Blues to practice to)


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