One of the most common questions that I get from new students goes something like this:
What does it mean to "learn" to improvise? If somebody shows you how to do it, then are you really improvising?
Let me start by saying that I LOVE this question. Creative freedom is the whole point of learning to improvise. So let me clarify what we mean by learning to improvise:
It's not about being told what to play. It's about developing an ability.
When we talk about learning to improvise, what we're really talking about is truly understanding music so that you can enjoy creating it yourself. Most often you'll probably be improvising over a song that you already know, so this gives the music a sense of form and structure. But there is also the excitement of spontaneity, because the melodies are being created in the moment.
But how can I know that the music will sound good if I'm just making it up?
This is a fear that almost everyone has in the beginning. But it's only because you're not yet familiar with what improvisers are actually doing. Like any other activity, from the outside it looks mysterious. Think about an airline pilot sitting in the cockpit with hundreds of buttons on the control panel. How do pilots know which buttons to push? Because they know what the buttons do.
In the same way, improvisers know which notes to play because they know what the notes sound like. In each moment the musicians play exactly the notes they want to hear. This is what makes musical improvisation so fascinating and addictive.
So how can I get started?
Learning to improvise is a lot of fun because it's so creative right from the beginning. Imagine soloing over a beautiful backing track that uses just one single chord, and you are improvising with the seven notes of a particular scale. Now imagine that all of the notes of your scale fit perfectly with the chord in the background, so literally every note you play sounds gorgeous. Can you imagine how great that would feel? Can you see how you would be able to play very freely with these notes, exploring their sounds and creating your own melodies?
This is exactly how your first improvisation experience should be. You should have a little set of sounds to work with, they should all sound beautiful, and you should be able to take all the time in the world to really get to know these sounds and to practice making music with them. Then after you have mastered this set of sounds, we can move on to the next harmonic situation and you can discover what that feels like. And in this way you can keep progressing until you've mastered our entire musical system, understanding both the theory and the limitless creative possibilities.
This is how the Improvise for Real method works. It is the world's first step-by-step method that teaches you to improvise your own music through progressive exercises that anyone can do. More than a decade of work went into developing the method and the materials, and the method is now considered by many people to be the definitive system for learning to improvise.
Every step of the way, you will have the chance to really explore and understand the sounds for yourself, and you'll learn to create your own music with them. You can go as far as you want to go, eventually learning the entire world of modern harmony. But you will also be having very enjoyable and meaningful improvisation experiences right from the very first day.
Download “Improvise for Real” and begin YOUR creative journey today!
The complete “Improvise for Real” method is available as a 250 page illustrated e-book which you can download directly to your computer. Use and enjoy the entire method for 60 days and if you are not completely satisfied we will give you a full refund. Just click the link below to begin enjoying a fun and creative daily practice that will show you how music and harmony really work. Discover your own musical creativity and express the music inside you!
Jam Tracks Levels 1 and 2