Solo Piano with Improvisation

I used to play saxophone but a repetitive strain injury to my jaw made it impossible to continue.
The thing I grieved most was the ability to improvise. It was natural for me to want to work towards this on the piano.

Whose Tune?

A slightly folky vignette, with the same 3 sections in the head and solo: a pedal section (static harmony), a chromatic ascending/descending bit and then cycling major 7th chords.

It’s called “Whose Tune” because when I first found the opening melody recorded on my keyboard, I didn’t remember putting it there!

Loop 7

Unsurprisingly, this is in 7. The head is very rubato (stretchy time) and actually starts in 4, but the solo keeps to time and to 7. It took me a loooong time to be able to improvise in 7.

(The bells on my foot play minims so that they are on the downbeats for the first bar of 7 and on the up-beats for the second bar).

Avivit

This tune is named after a very beautiful friend of mine, Avivit Caspi. We met when we were performing on the same bill and I was immediately struck by the contrast between her apparent fragility and the intensity and power of her performance.

Pop Goes

The first track is a recent practice recording of this tune, which breaks off mid solo because I was primarily testing out foot percussion!

The second is a practice session from 2013 where I am soloing over the B section chords on loop.

(The singing along is just a practice habit!)

Song for SRB

SRB is my mum (Sheila Ruth Braggins) and I composed the head for this tune a long time ago. Recently I returned to the piece started working on the solo section.

This track is from practice, so there is some talking to myself over it… plus liberties with tempo!