There are many different ways to interpret chord symbols on the piano. This lesson will cover a typical approach used for playing piano in a jazz combo known as left-hand rootless voicings.
In the previous lesson, we looked at a method for playing II-V-I progressions in major keys, using rootless voicings in the left hand. In this lesson, we’ll apply the same concept to a II-V-I progression in a minor key.
This example uses voicings shown above and introduces others.
This example uses left hand rootless voicings with bossa nova rhythms.
This example introduces a minor 6/9 voicing.
This example includes swing rhythms.
While the rootless II-V-I concept introduced in Part 1 is an excellent starting point and “go-to” option for major II-V-I’s in most cases. It is common to occasionally “alter” the V chord in a major II-V-I in cases where it does not interfere with the melody. In some cases, the altered V chord is the preferred sound and will support a melody better than the strictly diatonic II-V-I pattern introduced in Part 1.
In Part 2 we discussed how the minor II-V-I progression presents the player with a lot of different options and opportunities to be creative with voicings and chord choices. In this lesson we will look at a few methods of creating variety and build our options for minor II-V-I chord voicings.
The starting point for left-hand rootless voicings on blues progressions is to play two-note voicings that provide the 3rd and 7th of each chord.
These left-hand rootless voicings add one note (to make three-note voicings) and provide richness with 9ths or 13ths.