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Tips and etiquettes for Jazz Musician

Tips and etiquettes for Jazz Musician

There is one thing about Jazz musicians; they are very classy. And their jam sessions are as classy as their live performances. If you are new to Jazz music, or had any bad experience during a jam session, you can check out some useful tips below:

Preparing for a Jam session

If you ever been to a Jazz gig, you know they can go on for hours together. A Jazz repertoire is expansive, but there is always a core Jazz standard that is often called during a Jam or a session gig. The core Jazz members, or Jammers, as we know them more commonly, will avoid playing the same tune more than once at one jam session. So you need to prepare more than four tunes at least, or you will be out of luck for that jam.

For that, try learning five new tunes every jam session. You can learn five blues tunes, or any other genre tune, but just make sure you know five of them by heart.

Sort out the amp issue

Get a solid amp at the jam. Unlike metal, the sound of the guitar may easily get muffled behind the drums. Secondly, in Jazz, you do not play in distortion. So you need an amp that has a solid clean channel. For the jam, do not forget cables, tuner and other necessities, there is absolutely nothing more embarrassing than reaching up for a jam and asking others for these things.

Calm down your nerves

Jazz players are, perhaps, one of the most skilled musicians you will come across. But, you need to hold your breath and give it your best shot. One way of doing it just gets to the jam room and play. You need to get over it. It might prove to be a pain, but who knows, you might be surprised on how quickly the nerves fade away.

Practice with a backing track

There is absolutely nothing more that can improve your timings than playing with a backing track. It is one of the best ways to prepare yourself for a jam session. Just put on a Jazz backing track, and practice, either by playing by ear or reading through the sheet. Play your solos and chords upon the tune, and do not stop if you get lost somewhere between the songs. Instead, hint yourself some cues where you can come back to the line again, well, one way is keeping track of the time signature.

Hence, practicing with the backing track on will definitely help you improve your tempo.

Clear all confusions and awkward silences

Talk to the band between jams and before. Don’t be shy, musicians love people who have an open mind and creative ideas. Show your bandmates what you have been working for a while, after all, you guys are in the same band. Know your count, your tunes, and everything will work out well.