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Theory

THE100A, THE100B, THE200A and THE200B
Jazz Theory and Improvisation
3 credits, 3 hours lecture/lab
A four-semester course covering jazz theory and improvisation techniques and styles based on the artistic practice of jazz masters, from the early twentieth century innovations of Louis Armstrong, to the contemporary artistry of Herbie Hancock, and beyond. Students gain a solid understanding of jazz theory and improvisation, from the fundamentals to chord/scale theory, soloing, reharmonization, and transcription and analysis. Theoretical concepts are illustrated with select recordings of leading jazz artists and applied to relevant exercises and repertoire in class. This course lays important groundwork critical in the development of individual style.

THE300A
Advanced Jazz Theory and Improvisation
2 credits, 2 hours lecture/lab
An introduction to the harmonic and melodic approaches David Liebman innovated and expand- ed in his seminal book “A Chromatic Approach to Jazz Harmony”. Beginning with John Coltrane and the second Miles Davis quintet who independently began developing an advanced jazz language of chromaticism in the 1960s, this course addresses the work of David Liebman, along with Michael Brecker, Chick Corea and others who later that decade moved it to a new level of sophisticated control of consonance and dissonance that remains the gold standard for controlled harmonic tension and release, most commonly known as ‘playing in and out of the changes.’ Prerequisite: THE200B or consent of instructor.

THE300B
Advanced Transcription and Analysis of the Jazz Masters
Elective — 3 credits, 3 hours lecture/lab
A continuation of THE300A Jazz Theory and Improvisation, focusing on transcription and analysis of more challenging works by jazz masters.

THE301
Form and Analysis of Jazz Standards
2 credits, 2 hours lecture/lab
A course in an ensemble format focusing on form and analysis of jazz standards essential to the professional musician. Prerequisite: THE200B or concurrent enrollment.

THE302
Polyrhythms and Odd Rhythm Groupings
Elective — 2 credits, 2 hours lecture/lab
The nature and history of polyrhythms and odd rhythm groupings and their application to composition and improvisa- tion. All instruments and voice. Prerequisites: MUS100A and THE100A

THE205
Single Line Soloing
Elective — 3 credits, 3 hours lecture/lab
A course focusing on developing single line soloing techniques idiomatic to the bebop and post-bop traditions. Includes analysis and perfor- mance of key transcriptions of bebop and post- bop masters as well as in-class application of the fundamental devices employed in modern jazz improvisation. Prerequisites: A minimum of THE100B.

THE330
Latin Jazz Theory and Improvisation
Elective — 3 credits, 3 hours lecture/lab
Latin jazz theory and improvisation techniques and styles based on the artistic practice of Latin jazz masters, from the early twentieth century innova- tions of Arsenio Rodriguez to the contemporary artistry of Eddie Palmieri and beyond. Students gain an understanding of Latin jazz theory and improvisation, from the rhythmic fundamentals — including the function of clave — to chord/scale theory, soloing, reharmonization, and transcription and analysis. Theoretical concepts are illustrated with select recordings of leading Latin jazz artists and applied to relevant exercises and repertoire in class. This course lays groundwork critical in the development of individual style. Prerequisites: THE200B or concurrent enrollment.

THE250
T
raditional North Indian Rhythmic Concepts
Elective — 3 credits, 3 hours lecture/lab
An in-depth exploration of traditional rhythmic concepts from the North Indian system of classical music. Through the medium of vocal percussion syllables known bols, students are introduced to Indian rhythmic idioms such as tala (rhythmic cycles), layakari (rhythmic modulation), and tihai (thrice-repeated cadential phrases used to end a musical idea). Students learn traditional Indian rhythmic compositions drawn from the repertoire of classical North Indian percussion instruments such as tabla and pakhawaj. This class delves into the history and theory of North Indian rhythm as well as its influence on Jazz over the last 50 years. Emphasis is placed on pointing out the cross- cultural applications of Indian rhythmic concepts to any instrument and any style of music, enriching students’ compositional and improvisational skills.

THE251
T
raditional South Indian Rhythmic Concepts
Elective — 3 credits, 3 hours lecture/lab
An in-depth exploration of traditional rhythmic concepts from the South Indian system of classical music. Through the medium of vocal percussion syllables known as solkattu, students are intro- duced to Indian rhythmic idioms such as tala (rhythmic cycles), nadai (odd subdivisions of the beat), layakari (rhythmic modulation), and mora (thrice-repeated cadential phrases used to end a musical idea). Students learn traditional Indian rhythmic compositions drawn from the repertoire of classical Indian percussion instruments such as tabla, mridangam, kanjira, ghatam, thavil, and morsing. Emphasis is placed on pointing out the cross-cultural applications of Indian rhythms to any instrument and any style of music, enriching students’ compositional and improvisational skills.

CJC Catalog