Piano and Keyboard Salsa lesson series
Piano lessons Video Overview – “Piano and Keyboard Salsa, Ch. 2″
“Salsa Piano Lessons” (Chap. 2) : Just like the last chapter, we’re going to enable YOU to bring this outrageously fun style to the piano.
We’ll take a look at the same song covered in the chapter 1, but we’ll dig in quite a bit deeper. We’ll explore new alternate chord voicings and spicy rhythmic patterns. In addition, we’ll take an up close look at some of the concepts that can really bring your right hand to life when it comes time for you to take a solo!
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One of the first things that we’ll take a look at in this piano lesson is a technique for your left hand called the “walking bass”.
Because the blues and salsa music overlap in many areas, this is a technique that we looked at in chapter 10 of the blues piano lessons.
The walking bass is an interesting character. This musical device isn’t typically introduced at the beginning of a solo or musical passage. It’s usually introduced to establish that the groove has finally settled down and is ready to sit and stew for a while. Just like it sounds, the walking bass takes measured steps that are evenly spaced, usually placed on the quarter notes of every measure. Character can be added to the walking bass line using grace notes and slides, but the predictability of the quarter note passage that continues measure after measure really tends to set a solid foundation for a groove.
Eighth note walking bass passages are another beast altogether. When most people hear an eighth note walking bass passage, they typically think of black gospel old-school up-tempo handclapping music! To be honest, that style of music is one of my favorite styles on the planet. If you ever get the chance to play cookin black gospel music with a fantastic bass player, you’ll find you’ll smile so hard that your cheeks hurt! But I digress.
Some of the most important things that we’ll study here are ways to make interesting left-hand lines. In geometry, the shortest distance between two notes may be a straight line, but when you’re playing a bass line on the keyboard, you’ll want to introduce variation of notes, and come up with interesting ways to get from point A to point B.
With that in mind, we’ll study some alternate ways to create a bass line that is interesting.
In salsa music, the walking bass is a device that functions just like the walking bass of the blues. It’s typically a quarter note musical passage and makes its introduction sometime after the groove has been established.
Another concept that we’ll take a look at is a technique for your right-hand – “solo techniques on the piano”. This is one of the most mysterious areas of keyboard playing for many people. A common misconception is that a musician has to be born with a unique special gift in order to learn how to solo. This simply isn’t true. If you can listen to someone else playing a solo on the piano, and it makes sense to you, and you enjoy it, then you have the ability to produce solos on the piano. It’s simply a matter of technique and practice. Isn’t it always? Ha.
Again, you’ll hear lots of crossover between the blues and salsa styles. You’ll find many of the same chords and chord voicings, but the underlying rhythmic “pulse” is the foundational difference that sets them apart. Check out this very in-depth piano lesson video!