My mentor, Liz, teaches all levels of piano and music theory professionally, which evidently, are crucial aspects of my project. Liz also specializes in Jazz, and although I’m not studying Jazz specifically, keyboard improvisation and Jazz piano are closely related, and many of the concepts in Jazz piano are applicable to keyboard harmony/ improv and vice versa.
During my first meeting, I brought 1 lead sheet to begin working on: “Isn’t She Lovely” by Stevie Wonder. We discussed common aspects of keyboard harmony, but focused on distributing the chords between the left hand, right hand, and voice part. We also looked at the music that I brought and discussed some ways I could approach it.
So far, we’ve been looking at various chord structures/ patterns that are commonly used, and hopefully, I’ll soon be able to utilize these seamlessly, but for now, I’ve been predetermining several ways that I could approach each piece. I’ve been practicing my pieces at home, and I’ve been making an effort to try playing it differently each time. I’ve also been trying to practice basic techniques like scales/ chords, since I have to relearn a lot of fundamental knowledge.