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Jazz Hanon!


shniggens

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My piano teacher has me on this book (like a prescription ;) ), and it is really improving my playing.

 

I'm talking about the one written by Peter Deneff.

 

It's sad how much my technique had been neglected. This book is getting me back on track, plus it implements alot of jazz theory in the process, such as quartal voicings in the left hand and playing blues runs in the right - just a basic example. Now the lessons are getting much tougher (frustrating me to no end at the beginning :) ), but I feel I reached a new plateau technically, and theoretically each time I master a lesson.

 

Much better than the "standard" Hanon.

 

Of course, it's the combination of a good teacher and the book (along with much other material) that is making the biggest impact.

 

Just thought I'd share for those of you that might be looking for some good study material.

 

http://images.amazon.com/images/P/0634018736.01._PE_PI_SCMZZZZZZZ_.jpg

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How do you like the sound of the later excercises? I found it very hard to relate musically to the last few exercises.

 

As you liked this, another book you will like is "The Right Hand According to Tatum". Gack, I'm sounding like an Amazon ad.

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Hmmmm . . . maybe I'm not that far yet. I know that some of the excercises that I've played don't sound musical at all when tearing through the excercise. But the licks usually solidify in my mind, and when played in a song context, sound pretty cool.

 

It's done wonders for my left hand also.

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How do the jazz exercises sound - and feel - compared to "classic Hanon"? The latter is what we all grew up with, and while kinda boring, it works! But if it's possible to learn new fingering techniques while also being exposed to exciting rythmic and/or melodic patterns, I should probably buy this ASAP :idea:
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Originally posted by 88keys4me:

How do the jazz exercises sound - and feel - compared to "classic Hanon"? The latter is what we all grew up with, and while kinda boring, it works! But if it's possible to learn new fingering techniques while also being exposed to exciting rythmic and/or melodic patterns, I should probably buy this ASAP :idea:

Its really nothing like the original.

 

BTW, there are a while series of these: Jazz Hanon, Blues Hanon, Latin Hanon, Boogie-Woogie Hanon and possibly others.

 

Its a little known fact that there's even one for Chinese music call Hunan Hanon. :evil:

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Originally posted by Byrdman:

 

BTW, there are a while series of these: Jazz Hanon, Blues Hanon, Latin Hanon, Boogie-Woogie Hanon and possibly others.

 

Its a little known fact that there's even one for Chinese music call Hunan Hanon. :evil:

Nope, that's a different series than the one I'm talking about about. Look at the picture above. :cool:
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Right - there are two separate, and very different, "Jazz Hanons". I had a look at both and even bought one, but I found that I prefer to keep technique and jazz as two separate entities, both in my teaching and in my personal practice.

 

Originally posted by Byrdman:

As you liked this, another book you will like is "The Right Hand According to Tatum". Gack, I'm sounding like an Amazon ad.

Mmm, what's that? Byrdman, if you have this book, could you spend a few words to tell us how it is structured?

Thanks! :)

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The original Charles Hanon book didn't have any theory, just exercises. The first 30 are catchy 8-note patterns played up and down the major scale. The rest are a mixed bag of scales, arpeggios (all with standard fingering), trill exercises (one favored by Mozart), thumb transition exercises, etc. You can get the whole book free as a PDF file on several websites.

 

The current batch of Hanons sound like a mixed bag of theory and technique.

 

The original Hanon was really a gimmick: the claim was that you could break down piano virtuosity into a small number of easy exercises. If you mastered these, you'd be a virtuoso, and Charles Hanon was the only guy smart enough to figure out what the exercises were. This turned out to be pure snake oil.

 

Nevertheless, the first 30 exercises can be fun to play (they're taken from Bach), so the book is pretty popular at least for warm-up or finger strengthening. They won't make you a virtuoso though :) But if you do play them in all keys and use not just the major but other scales also, you'll gain a lot of mechanical familiarity with the scales that comes in handy when playing anything that uses the scales.

 

The current Hanons are certainly named that way to cash in on the popularity of the original, and also on the "shortcut" idea, although I doubt they make the same kinds of grandiose claims as the original.

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Originally posted by stoo schultz:

The original Hanon was really a gimmick: the claim was that you could break down piano virtuosity into a small number of easy exercises. If you mastered these, you'd be a virtuoso, and Charles Hanon was the only guy smart enough to figure out what the exercises were. This turned out to be pure snake oil.

Stu, I pleaded (but of course, lost) this case with my piano teacher at the tender age of 9 years. She had drunk the Kool-aid! However, I agree that playing Hanon can improve familiarity with scales in every key - essential for improvising, transposing, etc. One thing I always did (and still do) was to play Hanon with a metronome, as I would for Bach or any other "serious" work. It really helped me to improve my rhythm, especially as I started getting cocky :) and playing faster. I think this approach would benefit anyone who plays these exercises seriously, with measurable results.
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