opening chords to Bye Bye Blackbird

Despite the almost child-like simplicity of this popular song written by Ray Henderson, Bye Bye Blackbird has become one of the most important jazz standards of all time. It has everything that improvisers love in a standard: an infectious melody, beautiful chords, an elegant structure and enough space to let you really stretch out and express yourself creatively.

drawing of Ab major scale

Horace Silver's classic "Song for My Father" is one of the most popular tunes played at jam sessions. It's a perfect song for beginning improvisers because the entire song is made from just four chords. In this four-part lesson series we will study these chords using the IFR Tonal Map and you will learn to improvise your own solos over the entire form.

drawing of the 5 chord

In this lesson we will explore the second chord that appears in Song for My Father. It's called the 5D chord (pronounced "five dominant chord"). You will learn to improvise over this chord and to create this sound in your music.

drawing of the 4D chord

In this lesson you will learn to improvise over the 4D chord (pronounced "four dominant chord"). This is the first chord that contains a note from outside the key of the music, so you'll see how we approach these chords in IFR.

drawing of the chord progression

Our fourth and final lesson in this introductory series on Song for My Father covers the 3D chord (pronounced "three dominant chord") and gives you the complete chord progression to the song. The lesson includes a free IFR jam track that you can use to practice improvising over the entire song.

I have noticed that most songs and jazz standards over which I want to improvise normally have just one concrete environment, and so it might be easier to name the notes as starting from note 1 rather than from a note of the parent key (e.g. note 6). Do you think it's necessary to have the nomenclature named in a way which always connects it back to its parent key?

opening chords to Bye-Bye Blackbird

I have read some of your examples in the blog about analysis of some songs and to be honest I cannot understand at all. I would like to kindly ask why are those numbers put in circles?