Master Stride Piano

Image via Wikipedia

Fats Waller, three-quarter length portrait, se...

"The swinging, stride sound of early jazz pianists like Fats Waller and James P.Johnson is undergoing newfound popularity. Suddenly, everyone wants to play and hear this bouncy style again. So here are some exercises to help you get in the stride groove. Remember, when playing stride you should not be thinking about lightning-fast tricks or an amazing left hand, but rather a steady left hand and an all-around relaxed feeling." By Judy Carmichael
Exercise #1

(play 2 x's) Bb/Bb D, F then G/G Bb D F,   C/ G Bb C Eb,   F/ F A C Eb 

Exercise #2 

D/D F# A C,  E/D F# A C,  F/D F# A C,  F#/D F# A C,  G/D F G B,  A/D F G B,  A#/D F G B,  B/D F G B,  C/C E G Bb,  D/C E G Bb,  D#/C E G Bb,  E/C E G Bb F F/ l.h. octaves F, Eb, D,C/ l.h. single notes 

Exercise #3 

C/G A C E,  C#/G Bb C# E,  D/ G B D F,  G/G B D# F (repeat) C/ C E,  Bb/Bb C E, A/A C F,  Ab/Gb Ab C Eb,  G/G C E,  G/G B E C, B, A, G/ l.h octave single notes (repeat) Puttin' On the Ritz - Solo Stride Piano


Chris Dawson plays this great rendition from the title song of the 1930 film. Clear crisp lines! Everything between the melody bookends is improvised. None of this was arranged beforehand. Chris is a consummate improviser

 * Related Topic: Powered by Disqus

Happy Playing!

~ LadyD

General Music Education Sites

LadyDpiano: Vinyl Grooves
Vinyl Grooves

I'm pretty sure you have decided what instrument you're attracted to by now. I suggest you start with an instrument that creates excitement, which in turn will provide more of a chance for continued studies. Perhaps you have begun the traditional lessons such as private or group lessons. Some of you may be self-taught or a combination of both. A more contemporary approach can be teachers teaching from home or at music stores and tend to focus more on pop-rock and blues. Music camps and summer workshops are other alternatives. It has been an honor for me to teach kids and adults for 25 years. I am retired now... perhaps the timing is perfect since Covid arrived in our area around mid-March. What I can tell you is that having the right teacher plays an important role in musical development. A disciplinary or relaxed approach follows that different people learn through different methods. 

On the net, you may want to check out Here you can find ear training and music theory software, which are great tools to help develop your ear as well as understanding theory. Also, if you want to learn how to read music online, visit You can also ask any question in regards to music. And for you history buffs, there is an index for Music History in addition to information about different musical genres. 

LadyDpiano: Audio Waves
Audio Waves

If you are more into classical music rather than contemporary music you will find what you are looking for at Excellent site for CD/DVD/book reviews with 6,000 files and 4,000 links for classical music. Has a link to a buyer's guide which recommends CDs for your classical collection.

On The Net Piano Sites

Download free lessons for beginner piano and also purchase videos and CDs. Learn chords, chord progressions, keys, and playing by ear. You don't need to know how to read music for these lessons. Contains a section on how to read music in 30 minutes at 

For beginners, intermediate and advanced players, this site offers piano lessons including jazz, arranging, and playing your favorite songs at

By signing up with Jermaine Griggs, the site's founder, you can receive 60 free piano lessons. Start playing right away and get over 200 chords by ear. Visitors to the site can study major and minor chords and create chord progressions at 

I hope these sites will equip you to become a better musician!


-- LadyD

 "The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you." B.B.King

Simple Way To Accompany Yourself

Yes, you can accompany yourself! I read a short article by Big Wilson and here's what he had to say:

Now that you've practiced all the basic chords, let's make things even simpler. When the music calls for an II-V7-I progression, try playing it this way:

Old Way

DC/FA, GF/BD (Dm7, G7, C)

New Way

DC/FA, DB/FG, CC/EG (Dm7, G7, C) ... or

DC/FA, DB/FA, CC/EG (Dm7, G9, C)

The left thumb moves down 1/2 step. The top note in the right-hand moves down 1 whole step. And the A and C is played as always. The same four notes are struck but in a different order or inversion. The third way is even easier. Just move the thumb 1/2 step as shown in the 9th Chord version. The G7 chord is still a dominant 7th, but with a 9th added.

Have fun with this technique not only for keyboardists!

-- LadyD

 "The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you." B.B.King
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

© copyright 2008-2020 – All rights reserved

LadyD Piano
Related Posts with Thumbnails