Neon Jazz Interview

Last February I was interviewed by Joe Dimino at Neon Jazz.

Joe’s blog is an amazing wealth of interviews and inspiration where

you can spend hours learning insights from many great living jazz artists.

Here’s my interview with Joe:




Daily Practice 14: 5/8 Over 4/4

In this video I’m working on playing All The Things in 4/4 on piano. Half notes in the bass and 3rds and 7ths grouped in 5/8.  This piano exercise  helps me to play 5/8 against 4 while playing my saxophone.  Just to be clear, the grouping of 5/8 in my right hand is a quarter note followed by a dotted quarter note throughout the form of the tune.  This 5/8 grouping creates harmonic anticipation and harmonic suspension against the 4/4 half notes in the bass.  It will help you to blur the bar line a bit and improve your rhythmic concept.

~ Enjoy!


Daily Practice 13: Triads through Scales

Here’s a short  routine I came up with that covers all diatonic triads in all inversions through
Major, Harmonic minor, Melodic minor and Harmonic Major scales. The triads notes are ordered only in broken arpeggios (skipping between voices or chord tones) which I find to be a bit more challenging. For example, C major in root position with a note order or broken arpeggio of 3,1,5 is more difficult than note order or arpeggio 1,3,5 (while keeping the triad in root position). This routine covers all these broken arpeggios in every inversion through 4 scale types. The PDF’s below are all in C (C major sale, C Harmonic minor scale, C Melodic minor scale and C Harmonic Major scale.  The mp3s can allow you to sing along for ear training.

melodic minor tiads.musx

Harmonic Major – Diatonic Triads Mp3


Harmonic Minor Triads.musx

Harmonic minor – Diatonic Triads Mp3


Major ScaleTriads.musx

Major Scale – Diatonic Triads Mp3

Melodic Minor Triads.musx

Melodic minor – Diatonic Triads Mp3


~Come study with me at KU and get your degree at the same time~

Daily Practice 12: Dominant Pentatonic

In this video I’m practicing a simple melody derived from a Dominant Pentatonic scale (1,2,3,5,b7,1).  I play the melody over concert C7 chord and ascend by half steps through the keys.  I play the melody slowly over concert C7 at first, so you can figure out the line by ear, just pause and rewind if needed.  This is a nice scale for use over a dominant 7th chord with a natural 9.

If you use the scale a tri-tone away (F# Dominant Pentatonic over C7) it implies an altered dominant sound (#11, #5 b7, b9, 3).
During the melody I try to stay relaxed and balanced as well as using some space or rest between keys.  I often try to remove my left hand from the horn between phrases to help me develop a physical habit which leads to using a little more space.




~Come study with me at KU and get your degree at the same time~