Here is a list of the best Jazz Improvisation books, some I have read myself, some that I did research on, and all have great reviews!
Scales, chords, and exercises to help improve jazz improvisation and theory. This book is designed for students who know how to read music and want to improve their knowledge of jazz technique and theory.FAQ:What scales does this book include?All seven modal scales, five of the seven melodic minor modal scales, all whole tone scales, diminished scales, pentatonic and blues scales. Transcribed in every key!The full list is: Lydian, Ionian, Mixolydian, Dorian, Aeolian, Phrygian, Locrian, Lydian Augmented, Lydian Dominant, Ascending Melodic Minor, Half Diminished, Altered Dominant,…
2. Patterns for Jazz — A Theory Text for Jazz Composition and Improvisation: Treble Clef Instruments (1982)
Patterns for Jazz stands as a monument among jazz educational materials. Condensed charts and pertinent explanations are conveniently inserted throughout the book to give greater clarity to the application of more than 400 patterns built on chords and scales—from simple (major) to complex (lydian augmented scales)….
3. Jazz Improvisation: A Comprehensive Method for All Musicians (1988)
Jazz Improvisation focuses on the communicative and technical aspects of improvisation and makes an excellent resource for both pros and aspiring improvisers. Assimilate and execute chord progressions, substitutions, turn arounds, and construct a melody and jazz chorus….
Jazz Improvisation for Keyboard Players is a straightforward, no-nonsense improvisation series. It deals with creating melodies, using the left hand, pianistic approaches to soloing, scale choices for improvisation and much more….
(Music Sales America). The fundamentals of jazz are here explained and systemized in 70 lessons based on 60 jazz standards. It covers the styles of musicians from Buddy Bolden to Dizzy Gillespie….
6. Scales for Jazz Improvisation (1983)
Haerle presents the scales used in improvisation and explains applications. Scales shown in all keys and treble and bass clefs include blues, ionian, dorian, phrygian, locrian as well as whole tone, chromatic, augmented and many more. Great aid to memorizing….
Now with 2 CDs – one with slower tempos! Beginning/Intermediate. Easy to understand and inspiring for all musicians wishing to explore the secrets of jazz improv. The first CD includes blues in Bb and F, four dorian minor tracks, four-measure cadences, cycle of dominants, 24-measure song, II/V7 in all keys and Jamey playing exercises from the book (hear the master clinician demonstrates exactly how it’s done). The second CD contains the same tracks as the first, but the tempos are much slower to facilitate easier learning and “doubletime” practicing. The book includes specific instruction on playing jazz, including how chords…
Improvise for Real is a step-by-step method that teaches you to improvise your own music through progressive exercises that anyone can do. You’ll learn to understand the sounds in the music all around you. And you’ll learn to express your own musical ideas exactly as you hear them in your mind.The method starts with very simple creative exercises that you can begin right away. As you progress, the method leads you on a guided tour through the entire world of modern harmony. You will be improvising your own original melodies from the very first day, and your knowledge will expand with each practice session as you explore and…
Pentatonic and hexatonic scales are a staple of the modern jazz sound from the 1960s onwards. If you’re interested in exploring what goes into this beautiful modernist sound, read on. And understanding the way these structures work will also add an extra level to the way you play when you aren’t splanking it out like McCoy or Chick. This book gives detailed exploration of the six most used pentatonic scales, what to play on every chord type, pentatonics on II-V-Is, variations on II-V-Is and reharmonisations, outside and parallel pentatonics, partial pentatonics, pentatonics with passing…
10. Thinking in Jazz : The Infinite Art of Improvisation (Chicago Studies in Ethnomusicology Series) (1994)
A landmark in jazz studies, Thinking in Jazz reveals as never before how musicians, both individually and collectively, learn to improvise. Chronicling leading musicians from their first encounters with jazz to the development of a unique improvisatory voice, Paul Berliner documents the lifetime of preparation that lies behind the skilled improviser’s every idea.The product of more than fifteen years of immersion in the jazz world, Thinking in Jazz combines participant observation with detailed musicological analysis, the author’s experience as a jazz trumpeter, interpretations of published…
11. Patterns For Improvisation (2010)
One of the world’s most popular patterns books, many jazz greats have fond memories of practicing from this book! An exhaustive collection of improvisational jazz patterns in various meters and feels. Comments and suggestions by the author, a legendary composer, arranger, conductor, and instrumentalist. This is a very popular book because it helps spell out some of the basic building blocks of the jazz language. Regarded by many jazz teachers as one of the essential texts for their students….
12. Jazz Improvisation: A Pocket Guide (2010)
After 25 years of teaching, Dan has made available this wonderful pocket sized resource detailing the materials and techniques needed to play jazz. Includes chapters on chords & chord symbols, voicings, blues, functions, II/V/Is, guide tones and more!…
(Berklee Guide). Learn to improvise like an instrumentalist! Artful vocal jazz improvisation requires knowing the changes, and all musicians need to understand what is happening on the musical landscape. This book will help you hear, understand and apply jazz theory so that you can solo as a complete musician. Each lesson offers a core musical concept related to harmony, melody and rhythm, integrating skills such as conducting and analysis, and reinforcing them with practical exercises. The accompanying audio tracks demonstrate techniques and let you practice…
14. Beginner Jazz Soloing for Trumpet: The beginner’s guide to jazz improvisation for brass instruments (Beginner Jazz Trumpet Soloing) (2019)
Improvise jazz on trumpet with a simple six-step methodThis is not a how to play the trumpet book. It’s a how to play music book!Many brass players come from a classical background which may not have taught you how to play by ear. While this can provide an excellent grounding in music, it doesn’t teach you how to improvise, and often it’s difficult for classically trained musicians to learn Jazz soloing.Beginner Jazz Soloing For Trumpet is the perfect guide to bridge the gap. Devised by Buster Birch…
Best Jazz Improvisation Books That Will Hook You
We highly recommend you to buy all paper or e-books in a legal way, for example, on Amazon. But sometimes it might be a need to dig deeper beyond the shiny book cover. Before making a purchase, you can visit resources like Genesis and download some jazz improvisation books mentioned below at your own risk. Once again, we do not host any illegal or copyrighted files, but simply give our visitors a choice and hope they will make a wise decision.
The Lobster Theory (and other analogies for jazz improvisation)
Author(s): Greg Fishman, Jon Ziomek (editor), Judy Roberts (editor)
Publisher: Greg Fishman Jazz Studios, Year: 2014, Size: 2 Mb, Download: epub
Improvisation, Creativity, and Consciousness: Jazz as Integral Template for Music, Education, and Society
Author(s): Edward Sarath
Publisher: State University of New York Press, Year: 2013, Size: 4 Mb, Download: pdf
Improvisation, Creativity, and Consciousness: Jazz As Integral Template for Music, Education, and Society
Author(s): Wilber, Ken; Sarath, Ed; Wilber, Ken
Publisher: State University of New York Press, Year: 2013, Size: 6 Mb, Download: pdf
People Get Ready: The Future of Jazz Is Now!
Author(s): Ajay Heble and Rob Wallace (eds.)
Publisher: Duke University Press, Year: 2013, Size: 5 Mb, Download: pdf
The Shadow and the Act: Black Intellectual Practice, Jazz Improvisation, and Philosophical Pragmatism
Author(s): Walton M. Muyumba
Publisher: , Year: 2009, Size: 741 Kb, Download: pdf
Noise orders: jazz, improvisation, and architecture
Author(s): David P. Brown
Publisher: Univ Of Minnesota Press, Year: 2006, Size: 10 Mb, Download: pdf
Please note that this booklist is not final. Some books are absolutely record-breakers according to Chicago Tribune, others are written by unknown authors. On top of that, you can always find additional tutorials and courses on Coursera, Udemy or edX, for example. Are there any other relevant links you could recommend? Drop a comment if you have any feedback on the list.