Welcome back to week #25 where we’re going to continue with our Intervalic Series and giving some more insight into triad pairs. If this is your first time visiting this site…welcome! I’d like to invite you to check out this week’s tip as well as other tips (1-24) that have been posted and take a look around. Also, if you’re a returning visitor…thank you and welcome back! I hope you’ve enjoyed these tips and find them beneficial to your playing! Let’s dive in to our second week of triad pairs…
Last week we opened up the discussion of triad pairs and I want to continue this week by giving you another practical way we can use them through the lens of targeting and give you a great exercise to work on to help get this sound deep in your ear.
First, let’s expand on the exercise that I gave last week. Last week’s exercise was simply playing up and down the triad pairs in their inversions. This week’s exercise is the same exercise (in a different key), but adding a chromatic half step (either above or below) to connect the different triad pair inversions. This exercise will get the sound of these triad pairs under your fingers and in your ears. If necessary, I suggest writing these out in the key areas that are not familiar to you. However, the best route is to play this exercise in all keys without writing them out.
Last week we looked at how we can use triad pairs over the ii-V-I progression. This week, we’re going to look at them over a different harmonic structure. We’re going to use the triad pair (F/G) over a Fmaj7(#11) chord. Triad pairs on the 4th and 5th scale degrees of a major scale/key area are great for using over diatonic chords. A Fmaj7(#11) chord is in the “key” of C, so we can use the F and G triads because they help define that chord’s harmonic structure. Below is a musical example mixed with the exercise above over a Fmaj7(#11). Notice how we’re targeting the “B” (or #11) in the second measure and how the added chromatic note helps us land on that note on beat 1:
By now, you should have a good grasp on how you can combine triad pairs and connect them with chromatic tones to land on notes that you’re targeting. You can use different triad pairs and types (major, minor, augmented, diminished, etc) that fit over various chords. Walt Weiskopf’s book, Intervalic Improvisation The Modern Sound: A Step Beyond Linear Improvisation has a great chart that shows different triad pairs and which one’s he feels best fit different harmonic structures. I highly suggest you check out his book. If you would like to add different chromatic targeting options and other targeting tools to your arsenal, I would suggest you check out my book, Targeting: Improvisation With Purpose by clicking on the link to the right or by going to Jason Klobnak Music.
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Jason Klobnak is a versatile trumpet player that has been performing as an active musician, author, clinician, composer and educator. His band, J's Ruckus, is Denver's blend of Post-Bop, Soul, Gospel, and Hip-Hop. They perform infectious and up-lifting originals for audiences hungry for a memorable live experience. J's Ruckus released their latest album, Suck Less, in March of 2020 and their first EP, Sermons, in July of 2019. Both were recorded live in front of an audience. Suck Less was recorded to a packed auditorium at Arapahoe Community College's Waring Theater in Littleton, CO. Sermons was recorded in front of a sold out crowd at the Soiled Dove Underground. The JKQ (the Jason Klobnak Quintet/Quartet) is Mr. Klobnak's Hammond B-3 centered groups. The JKQ released their third full-length album in March of 2018 called Friends & Family. It has been very well reviewed, on numerous Top 10 lists for Jazz radio stations across the country (including Denver's KUVO 89.3FM which named it May 2018's CD of the month), and in Jazzweek's Top 100. Each composition was written for specific family and close friends (that might as well be family). Their second album, New Chapter, was recorded in part thanks to the Pathways to Jazz Grant from the Boulder County Arts Alliance. In 2015 and 2016, New Chapter was in the Top 75 on the Jazzweek charts and on the Top 10 playlists for over a dozen radio stations worldwide. Their first album, Mountain, Move made the Best Recordings of 2013 list from AllAboutJazz.com by C. Michael Bailey. His very well reviewed Christmas single, Hark the Herald, in 2016 as part of a creative project with musicians James Roberson and Nathaniel Kearney Jr. Besides the JKQ, Mr. Klobnak is a B.A.C. (Best American Craftsman-custom trumpet), Denis Wick (mouthpiece and mutes) and Westone Audio endorsed artist (ES20 and Tru Customs). Mr. Klobnak has played and recorded for numerous groups ranging from jazz, soul/R&B, indie-rock/pop and gospel. In addition to performing, he has also written two improvisation-based books called Targeting: Improvisation With Purpose and Breaking the Monotony and is currently an adjunct professor and brass instructor at Arapahoe Community College. Mr. Klobnak holds a bachelor degree from Drake University (Des Moines, IA) and a Master’s degree from the University of Denver, Lamont School of Music (Denver, CO).
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