Jazz Manouche Violin


INSTRUCTOR: Adam Bern (bio)

NOTE: This class is suspended for this term. Come back next term and register!

Jazz manouche (often referred to as “gypsy jazz”), which was predominantly pioneered by legendary Belgian Manouche guitarist Jean “Django” Reinhardt in France in the 1930s, is heavily influenced by French, Belgian, and Romani traditional music and can be considered the European counterpart to American swing. Unlike in American jazz, a typical jazz manouche band consists of string instruments with the violin as the lead melodic instrument.

This class is meant to serve as a beginner introduction to jazz manouche violin, a “meet and greet” if you will. It is impossible to learn everything about jazz manouche in 8 weeks or 8 months really—one might say that even the greatest jazz musician is a student of jazz their entire life. We should not be intimidated by this, though, because the study of jazz is as fulfilling as it is demanding. Instead we should relish this opportunity for limitless growth and the pursuit of self-expression, reveling in our achievements along the way. If you take nothing else from this class, I hope you at least internalize this philosophy.

There are a number of practical and specific skills we will be working on during this class that will help you in your musical pursuits. These skills will be geared toward jazz manouche, but they also apply to any genre of music:

  • Practical music theory: scales, arpeggios, chord progressions, etc.
  • Ear training: passive and active listening, picking out key and time signatures, hearing chord qualities and progressions, etc.
  • Reading chord charts: understanding chord progressions and how chords function, finding key modulations, etc.
  • Soloing: licks and improvisation, phrasing, musical ideas, creative problem solving, etc.

Welcome! Looking forward to swinging with you!

This class is an online class. Your instructor will send you information on how to access the class online.