I would like to see how you guys are voicing giant steps on piano..I'm not playing with a bass player..Kind of new to jazz.I understand that besides the first few chords it's basically 251's in eb,g and b...The bass really brings that song to life but i wanna know how i can sound good without a bass player...Does anyone mind sharing your voicing with a not so advance piano player????????? Thanks for your help in advance...Any help would be greatly appreciated..
If you are new to jazz, I would advise you to steer clear of that tune for a while. A lot of people getting in to jazz nowadays tend to develop a fetish for that tune. The fact is: The kind of phrases you work in on that tune can only be played on coltrane changes without them sounding awkward since the tune has unorthodox key changes.
I would rather start working on blues or rhythm changes if I were you. Those tunes are good vehicles for improvisation, and you can use the vocabulary you attain there in a range of other settings.
I know this is not helping much with your question, but if you tackle more basic things first, you will be able to develop an arrangement on that tune more effortlessly later. If you want to develop basslines, I suggest you work on II-V-Is I-VI-II-Vs in all keys because those are the most common progressions and you can apply this knowledge to a range of settings. Giant Steps is basically II-V-Is and V-Is in three different keys. If you have a lot of basslines down for your II-V-Is, you can start using them in Giant Steps when you feel comfortable.
If you're playing solo piano, with no bass, use shell chords. Here's a left hand that I use on the head.
Fill in the rest of the notes with the right hand, especially the major 7s on the GΔ and EbΔ chords. Note that in the last measure I've got an F#9sus instead of a C#m7, but you can use the latter.
I can't show the melody because of copyright restrictions.
On the solos, the left hand can be simplified.
thanks guys for all your help
I agree what birdbop says, but sometimes it can be also inspiring trying new things, even if they are not completly within technical reach yet.
Like Engelbach I did not write the melody because of copyrights.
The difference between Engelbachs version and mine however is the wholetone stepwise descending bass line I used. This phenomen you conceive by putting every second chord as an inversion (a 3-4 chord).
Just add the single theme line on top. The rest of the tune you could also use normal drop2 voicings.
Here is the example.
-Nor Eddine Bahha
Pianist/Author/Composer & Arranger
JAZZOLOGY: The Encyclopedia of Jazz Theory for All Musicians
Pianists who play rootless voicings with a bass player usually play in a completely different way when playing solo.
Bill Evans discussed the problems of solo piano, of needing to work the bass in but still maintain the colorful flavor of rootless voicings. Transcriptions of his playing show some interesting solutions.
McCoy Tyner, too, known for the inventiveness of his rootless voicings, uses full-voiced chords when he plays solo. His solo performance of Giant Steps on YouTube is particularly instructive, in the way he uses the whole keyboard. Of course, this playing is beyond the reach of most of us.
I am just another under-employed jazz musician. I'll add some links if I stay here long enough.
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