Swing Improv Workout – Monthly Class Pass


 Want to become a better improviser or get some fresh new ideas? Come join us. In December, we’ll work out on the 30s classic, Home. Playing in the key of C, we’ll cover two very common chord progressions, a 2-5-1 (ii-V-I) and a short turnaround (IV – IV#dim – I – VI – ii – V – I). As always, I’ll break things down and take the mystery and stress out of the improv equation.

  • December: Home
  • How to solo centered around the melody
  • How to memorize chord progressions
  • How to jump straight to chord tones
  • How to get a natural swing feel/groove
  • How to find and use tasteful/cool notes
  • Jazz language



Swing Improvisation Workouts
With Katie Glassman
The 1st and 3rd Thursday of every month: December 2 & 16
Level: Intermediate/Advanced

Song or Technique: Home – Key of C

Home (When Shadows Fall) is a song written by Harry Clarkson, Geoffrey Clarkson, and Peter van Steeden in 1931. I grew up hearing folks like Gene Gimble and Jethro Burns jam this rare classic, and then in 2012, Paul McCartney brought this song back into the public eye! It’s a great tune for an improvisation workout. Its AABA form leads us on many twists and turns. Here is my key of C, December workout outline:


  • ii-V-I licks
  • I chord to the dominant VII chord licks
  • Short turnaround licks
  • iv minor licks


  • Slow swing feel
  • Crossover bowings for ballads


  • Learn how to embellish this unique melody
  • NEW neighboring variations

Stay sharp on your improv and swing skills — or if you’ve never improvised, JUMP IN! Like any other activity that involves some getting in shape, this means working out. That’s what we do twice a month with these improv workout classes. To keep things fresh and fun, we learn a new song each month. Focus on all of the tools in the swing improvisation toolkit (don’t worry, you’ll learn these one at a time) and make sure that you are comfortable using them in creative ways. These workouts are fun, fresh, and engaging — and with this class, you’ll have time to balance swing improv practice with your fiddle tune work.

Classes are on the 1st & 3rd Thursdays of the month from 4:00 – 5:15 MDT. You can buy classes monthly or in a multi-class ten pack (for a discount).  

In the first Thursday class of each month, you’ll learn the melody of the song we’re focused on as well as the chords and ideas for variations on the melody. We play together and do lots of repetitions so that you leave each class with plenty of ideas already under your fingers.

The second class of each month will include swing workouts over the new song, and we’ll do these together. You’ll leave each class with a couple of good licks and exercises to incorporate into your solos and practices, taking in small bites of material to integrate into your playing. Then you can take these ideas with you to jams and future improvs/solos — over new songs as well as the songs we cover in the workouts. The second class of each month will also offer an opportunity for you to perform your solo (whether it’s composed, transcribed, or an improvisation) of the song(s) we’ve worked on before we go on to the next one. You’ll be swinging in no time, and fun is guaranteed 😉 



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