Jazz School News, Thoughts and Events.

The Four Secrets of Practicing Music

Posted by David Bloom on Oct 23, 2010 8:05:00 PM

Everybody knows that in order to improve any skill, practicing is critical. But what constitutes practicing is quite variable.  Some think that if a guitar is in your hands while watching TV, you are practicing.  Others think repeating the same exercises you have been doing for years or sitting in on a jam session is practicing. There is a huge difference between playing and practicing.  Although some people can improve while they’re playing a gig, most improve while practicing effectively.  There are four secrets great players know and use when they’re practicing:

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Topics: jazz, jazz courses, chicago jazz, david bloom, practicing music

16 Square Feet

Posted by David Bloom on Oct 17, 2010 7:54:00 PM

I remember when I used to go out dancing in the Division St. bars in Chicago. There were always bouncers standing outside of the clubs to insure that the occupational limit was not exceeded. Their presence was troubling in that these bouncers seemed to make an aggressive proprietary statement with those 16 square feet outside of the club. They acted as if they owned it because they could grant or deny entry.

What I realized years later is that all of us need that 16 square feet. It's a place where we are somebody, where what we think is important, not to just us, but to anyone on our turf - a place where we can feel like we can have power to refuse or to allow, where we can call the shots. Anyone, regardless of his or her station in life, must pass through our gate. It’s a world we can call our own.

Many of us have a space somewhere. It might be at home, at work, a health club, the bandstand, the stage, box seats or wherever. All of these locations may help you feel there is somewhere that makes you feel special, noticed, powerful and important.

There is only one location where you can guarantee to find that 16 square feet, and that is in your mind. That territory no one can take away - it's yours alone. It can be as expansive as 1000 miles or as small as a square inch. It's only limited by the depth of our imagination.

Whether it’s a physical 16 square feet or in your mind, it’s how you feel about it that’s important. It’s all up to you.
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Topics: chicago jazz, david bloom, jazz school, inspiration

Studying Jazz

Posted by David Bloom on Oct 1, 2010 12:57:00 PM

Many years ago people would ask me "How do you teach jazz?" I would tell them that it is complicated.  Although there are many components -- such as chords, licks, technique, stylistic considerations etc. -- the one critical component of jazz is that it must be played spontaneously.

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Topics: jazz, jazz courses, chicago jazz, jazz intro

A new site, a new day for the Bloom School of Jazz!

Posted by Phil Bruni on Sep 9, 2010 10:51:00 AM

Over the past few weeks we have put our heads down and charged ahead with creating a better online experience for those interested in the Bloom School. To mark this unveiling we have also added some new classes that may interest you.

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Topics: jazz courses, chicago jazz, bloom school, jazz intro