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Jazz Performance Guidance with Bloom's Laws

Posted by David Bloom on Nov 23, 2011 2:32:00 PM

One problem you may be noticing during live performances is a lack of respect for the show. Each tune should be considered a chapter in a suspense novel, not a series of short stories with no cohesiveness. With my 40+ years of intensely studying the greatest jazz performers of the last century, I've discovered core values and practices that make the live experience of jazz infinitely more interesting and exciting for the audience.

It is my strong recommendation that each show you play be set with these rules in mind, for yourself and more importantly, for the people offering their time and money to be entertained by YOU.

Bloom's Laws

  1. No fewer than eight tunes per one-hour set.

  2. No duplication of tempo, mood, or groove per set.

  3. A ballad should never be more than three choruses long.

  4. Do not repeat the order of the soloists.

  5. Everyone should not solo on every tune.

  6. Every tune should be arranged.

  7. No tune should last more than ten minutes.

  8. Do not duplicate arrangements.

  9. Do not repeat tunes.

  10. Vary the intensity from chorus to chorus.

  11. Neither ego nor machismo should override musical sense.

  12. Not every tune has to include improvisation.

  13. No sheet music on the bandstand.

Topics: jazz courses, jazz classes, jazz education, jazz instruction