Still Practicing & Improving

For the past few days, including Thanksgiving, I have not been feeling well. I caught a head cold, and my nose has been stuffy up. My ears have been ringing and rumbling, causing me some dizzy spells. So I sat home alone all day on Thanksgiving and the rest of the weekend.

I did practice a couple of times this weekend. My embouchure is stronger. With a more robust embouchure, my tone is coming along very well.

Also, my technique is getting better. I haven’t yet begun to go through an actual practice routine. Thus far, I have only been practicing 15 songs or so with Band-In-A-Box. Learning standard jazz tunes has always been something I’ve wanted to do.

Through my years of being a musician, I have played these tunes without knowing what I was doing. A friend of mine, also a Navy musician, said to me recently that jazz improvisation was like a bunch of wild cats in your brain. In other words, jazz improvisation is not easy to learn. My friend is a good sax player.

Nowadays, I have analyzed chord progressions, learned what scales to use where. Finally, I know songs and their harmonic structures. Even though I’m not where I want to be yet, I don’t feel lost in the songs the way I did in the past. By learning the basic chord structures of these few songs, it is easier to learn new tunes.

I am improving with a little bit of practice. If I can continue to practice a few times a week, I could even raise a level in my playing. I hope to record another video soon, so stay tuned.

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