This exciting programme at Rata School of Music is organised and run by Leigh Jackson, former Principal Lecturer in jazz piano and jazz guitar at Massey University Jazz School for 18 years. Leigh has a great reputation at home and abroad as a performer too. We consider ourselves very lucky to have someone with his experience and reputation in charge and expect his Jazz lessons to book up quickly.
Course Outline and Schedules
Individual lessons in Jazz Theory and Improvisation
In these individual lessons you will explore with Leigh how Jazz is structured and the melodic, harmonic and rhythmic elements that underpin it. Subjects explored in detail include jazz scales, chromatics, chord construction, understanding jazz progressions, harmonising standards and the connection between chords and scales.
An understanding of basic classical music theory and knowledge of scales on your instrument are essential. Rudimentary keyboard skills would be useful but not essential.
This is a practical programme where you deal with the elements needed to be able to improvise. Scales, patterns, rhythmic skills, listening and ear training will all be covered.
A practical course covering the skills required to play in a small jazz combo. We will explore the standard jazz repertoire with a focus on putting arrangements together. Some experience on your instrument is required for this course.
About Leigh Jackson
Leigh Jackson was born ‘within the sound of Bow Bells’ in Marylebone, London and has been playing the Guitar since an early age. His first influence was through his uncle in London who was a recognised player in the gypsy and flamenco style. Leigh moved to New Zealand in his teens and has been playing professionally for 30 years and is fortunate to have shared the stage with many international and local artists as a Jazz, Rock and Fusion guitarist. Visit his website to see the extensive list of great musicians he has played with.
Leigh became the first person in NZ to complete a Masters degree in jazz performance which he was awarded with distinction in 2002. Leigh was the founder and Head of the Jazz Guitar department of Wellington’s Massey University (New Zealand School of Music) and lecturer in Jazz Piano, Jazz Guitar Jazz Theory, Composition and Improv. After 18 years of teaching Leigh was amongst a group that left the department in 2004. Leigh has taught postgrad level Jazz at Canterbury University and on the Academy at Victoria University and has several undergraduate and postgrad students that visit him regularly. He also teaches degree students at Whitirea Polytech.
Has worked as a producer for New Zealand jazz labels Rata-Records, Yatra Records and his own company Lydian Records. Recent recordings produced by Leigh include “Parallax“, The Rite of Swing” and “Fragments of the Blues“, also Double Play by virtuoso bass player Ben Shepherd.
Learn more about Leigh at http://www.leighjackson.com/