Chevron Left
Back to The Blues: Understanding and Performing an American Art Form

Learner Reviews & Feedback for The Blues: Understanding and Performing an American Art Form by University of Rochester

584 ratings

About the Course

The blues is an American art form and the most important musical form in jazz. Although there are other formal paradigms of the blues, such as 8-bar or 16-bar, this course focuses on different incarnations of the 12-bar blues. There are considerable differences between Early Jazz blues, Swing blues, Bebop blues, Modal blues, and Post Bop blues. Each type has its unique harmonic syntax, melodic vocabulary and, associated with them, improvisational techniques. While other aspects of jazz performance practice have been constantly changing from one stylistic convention to another, the blues has never lost its identity and expressive power, and continues to exert a powerful influence on the harmonic and melodic syntax of jazz. This seven-week course explores important aspects of the blues, blues improvisation, basic keyboard textures, jazz harmonic and melodic syntax. Topics include: (1) Blues Progressions; (2) Blues and Other Scales; (3) Improvisational Tools, and others. This course will also cover valuable theoretical concepts enabling the student to master the art of jazz improvisation. Each topic will be introduced from a practical perspective with the clearly stated goal: to improve one’s improvisational skills. Jazz improvisation is rooted in spontaneity, creativity, self-expression and, at the same time, self-control and order. A unique pedagogical approach based on a one-to-one musical interaction conducted with different instrumentalists will help to reinforce many of the concepts introduced in this course and realize its stated objectives....

Top reviews


Jul 27, 2020

Very good and enjoyable mix of practice and theory - from basics to more advanced with good explanations throughout. I just wish I was a better piano player to be able to take full advantage of it!


Oct 7, 2016

Such a great course! Even though I am a bass player this course has made me understand patterns and ways in which the Blues can be taken to. Thank you very much for such an amazing experience.

Filter by:

151 - 175 of 240 Reviews for The Blues: Understanding and Performing an American Art Form

By saisumanth

Apr 6, 2018

professional course which useful for full time musicians

By Pablo S H

Aug 25, 2017

It´s great and resourceful. From basic to advance level.

By dragan r

Mar 22, 2018

great course,thank you darius end everyone,best regards

By Minerva M G

May 20, 2019

I loved it! I use it for my self and for my students.

By Leo M E E

May 11, 2021

It was a very difficult course but worth the effort!

By Julie N

Jul 21, 2020

I learned a lot. I can write my own contrafacts now.

By Cristina R

Nov 23, 2020

Great course! There is so much interesting content

By Roman

Nov 1, 2019

Excellent jazz material with excellent explanation

By Miguel A O C

Mar 10, 2020

Excelente Curso, muy preciso en sus definiciones.

By Sakda S

Jul 12, 2018

Very Impressive course. I learn a lot from there.

By Kelly-Ann K

Nov 9, 2019

So much rich information and examples .

Thank you

By Yvan S

Oct 9, 2016

Awesome course, especially for Jazz pianists!

By Angelina W

Nov 24, 2016

Love the theory discussion and performances.

By Abellot a

Dec 10, 2017

buen curso, lastima no está en español 100%

By Ervin S

Jun 19, 2016

I've learnt a lot from this course. Thanks!

By Naim

Jun 1, 2020

The is a paramount music education course.

By Yohanes N P

Jun 29, 2017

Super great! The pace is good for beginner

By Ansik C

Apr 7, 2021

very nice lecture for blues piano players


Jan 2, 2018

Excellent, very neat and illustrative.

By Marcos N d O

Apr 13, 2017

Pratical, straight foward and elusive.

By Hernán S J

Dec 28, 2020

Me encanta y voy a seguir repasándolo

By António F T M

Jun 26, 2017

I loved this course, a must to have!!

By denis o

Oct 26, 2021

excellent teacher. I learned so much

By Frederick J

Jun 9, 2020

So so so grateful for the knowledge


Nov 18, 2022

amazing course thank you very much