Last verse with a groove

Have you ever wondered how you can get away from playing the music exactly as written in the hymnbook and free things up a bit. In the first of our video tutorials on church music skills, Richard Michael uses “What a friend we have in Jesus” (CH4 547) to give a quick introduction to some of the different ways in which you could start to improvise around it. In future videos he will go into some of these techniques in greater detail but in the meantime here is a handy little download where you can follow the steps and try them out at the piano or organ yourself. While Richard makes this look incredibly easy don’t be scared to take things slowly and build up your confidence bit by bit.

Richard Michael is one of Scotland’s most versatile musicians. He is a performer, teacher, composer and workshop leader. Through his work with Fife Youth Jazz Orchestra and ABRSM he has influenced a generation of students and teachers. He is a regular contributor to Radio Scotland programmes including “The Jazz House” and “Classics Unwrapped”.

Links:
Richard Michael's Jazz School
Jazz Masterclasses on The Jazz House
Fife Youth Jazz Orchestra