Improvisation is a bit of a paradox for musicians. The freedom a player enjoys when improvising might appear to be at odds with the rigid discipline of study and practice necessary to achieve that freedom.
However, with study and practice comes fluidity — and the ability to craft compelling improvisations. The more knowledgeable and practiced the player, the more creative and daring a musician can be without being preoccupied by technique and theory. But what should you study and practice? What theory needs to be mastered? How do you learn how to improvise?
Larry Carlton’s 335 IMPROV will guide your journey with an approach that is highly enlightening and extraordinarily accessible.
Eighteen-time GRAMMY nominee and three-time GRAMMY winner Larry Carlton is certainly one of the most versatile and accomplished guitarist walking the planet today. With over 3,000 sessions, 200 hit records and 100 gold albums to his credit, Carlton has improvised thousands of memorable guitar solos, comps and parts over the course of his career. Suffice to say that Mr. 335 is uniquely qualified to present this curriculum.
"I get asked all of the time about my improvisations," Larry tells us. "Am I thinking scales and arpeggios when I improvise? Do I have stock approaches to progressions? Do I use modes? I have certainly studied and am very much aware of these principles, but my personal approach is quite different when I’m improvising."
Carlton’s passion for education has fueled his enthusiasm for producing this course. “I’m excited about 335 IMPROV and the opportunity to present my own approach to improvisation,” he says, “which, as I demonstrate in the course, works just as well for me over rock, blues and pop as it does with jazz.”
335 IMPROV is organized into six sections. Each section covers a series of related topics and each uses a vamp or section from one of Carlton’s tunes as the practice track. The tracks were cherry-picked by Larry to provide a range of harmonic and rhythmic situations, in a variety of musical styles that will satisfy players of most every discipline.