How to develop your unique musical personality and style through right brain connection with your instrument

By Michael Lake | November 27, 2019 |

Think about playing using your right (creative) brain. It’s the part of your brain that, if connected well to your instrument, allows for the most authentic improvisation. You hear a note, you’re better able to play that note. Your instrument becomes the amplifier of your musical “voice”. But there’s another aspect to improvisation that benefits…

How to improvise more melodically – part 2 of 2

By Michael Lake | November 14, 2019 |

30 percent of your brain’s cerebral cortex is dedicated to visual processing. A paultry three percent is dedicated to hearing. That says a lot. One, it explains why it’s harder to retain the content of an audio book than reading a physical book. It explains why people often say, “I’m a visual learner” (of course…

How to improvise more melodically – part 1 of 2

By Michael Lake | November 11, 2019 |

The title of this post reflects the majority of responses I received recently when I asked the question of 1,500 musicians: What are you struggling to accomplish with your jazz playing Some people put it in terms of playing solos that were more inventive or riveting, or creative. One respondent wrote, “Combining ideas into melodies…

The core skill of jazz improvisation you have probably not yet been taught

By Michael Lake | September 1, 2019 |

It’s been way too long since I wrote something here. My musical life has shifted and blogging has taken a back seat. It wasn’t that long ago that I felt guilty if I hadn’t written anything that week. As you’ll see throughout the next thousand words, my lack of blogging has not been for a…