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Improvisation Big Book By Erik Veldkamp


Digital Download

As a Professor of Trumpet Technique at the Amsterdam University of the Arts and member of the Jazz Orchestra of the Concertgebouw, Erik Veldkamp has learned firsthand what works for players at all levels to establish their own style of improvisation. This book is the culmination of a lifetime’s worth of work and experience in the field and is such a simple step-by-step manual that you will be creating improvisations that you never thought possible by the end. Complete with 127 audio files of demos and backing tracks and 200+ pages of studies and solos, there is simply nothing else on the market like it.

This book is based on melodic improvisation. Using 16 different jazz standards as your guide, you will learn systematically how to use theme development, articulations, modes, broken chords, approach notes, and enclosures, to take your improv to the next level. The parts of the book are:

Part 1: Plain language explanation of what theme development, articulation, modes, broken chords, approach notes, and enclosures are, and how great players use them to create new music off the top of their heads.

Part 2: 16 Jazz Standards, each written out with 6 choruses. First, you play the theme, then Erik develops new improvisations (all written out and with demo recordings), a theme interpretation, a theme development, an improvisation, and then a free improvisation. You then get to use the backing tracks to play through all 6 choruses yourself with the written material, then try your own improvisation on the last chorus! This is followed by 4 more jazz standards with nothing written out by Erik, this is where it is your time to shine and graduate as a fully-fledged Jazz Soloist.

Part 3: Appendix. This is where you find more scales, approach note exercises, enclosure examples by Clifford Brown, a closer look at jazz articulation, and ending with St. Louis Blues by Louis Armstrong.

Your purchase gets you the 200+ page book, and two full albums of audio (one is demos and samples, the other is all backing tracks).

I have put some samples to the left and included an entire tune. Listen to Erik play each chorus below, then the last track is backing band only so you can try it yourself. The list of all the standards included is at the bottom. Dig in, everyone!

Song List

  1. Freddie Freeloader
  2. I’ve Never Been In Love Before
  3. I’ve Got Rhythm
  4. Honeysuckle Rose
  5. All of Me
  6. Someday My Prince Will Come
  7. Autumn Leaves
  8. On The Sunny Side of the Street
  9. All The Things You Are
  10. Lulu’s Back in Town
  11. Soon
  12. Just Friends
  13. Sometime Ago
  14. Secret Love
  15. Stella by Starlight
  16. Sweet Georgia Brown
  17. I’ll Close My Eyes
  18. Tea for Two
  19. A Foggy Day
  20. It’s All Right With Me


Erik Plays Through “Autumn Leaves”

Backing Track for Autumn Leaves, Try It with the Samples!




Erik Veldkamp’s Big Book Series

The Improvisation Big Books

  1. The Improvisation Big Book
  2. Patterns for Improvisation
  3. Playbook for Improvisation
  4. 50% OFF The Complete Big Books

The Flexibility Big Books

  1. Flexibility Big Book
  2. Flexibility Big Book 2
  3. Flexibility Big Book 3 (Christmas Edition)
  4. 50% OFF Complete Flexibility Big Books

The Jazz Articulation Big Books

  1. The Jazz Articulation Big Book 1
  2. The Jazz Articulation Big Book 2
  3. Staccato Standards Book 1
  4. Staccato Standards Book 2
  5. 50% OFF Complete Jazz Articulation Series

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