Week 1: Kickoff! Start Improvising with F-E-D

Welcome to the first week of "Imagination on the Piano: Improvising Classically with George Ko"!

This is the thread for posting the submissions and assignments for the first week. Watch the first Livestream to learn more about the Week One Assignments!

This underrated, rarely utilized chord progression in the traditional classical repertoire unlocks the entire world of improvisation. See how just 3 chords can get you improvising instantly with the piano knowledge you already have.

Week One Assignment

Watch the first Livestream! Share a quick 20-30s improv using the chords F, E, and D (all qualities, Major, Minor, Major 7th, welcome!). Just use your iPhone to record, and remember, all mistakes welcome! (This is a safe space!)

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  • Hi George, thank you for offering this workshop.

     

    do you want us to post some attempts BEFORE watching the live stream or wait until after that? 

    I've been playing around with these chords & I'm finding it rather challenging, as well as intriguing to try to make them work together.  My ear wants to establish a tonal center with at least a dominant and subdominant, but none of these chords serve that function with any other (although you can get close with some alterations and substitutions).  I'm sure that's part of the reason you chose them, to open our ears to other possibilities & relationships.  are we allowed to use diminished versions of the chords also?  

     

    I started out as a "Can't make it" and then a "Maybe", but with some schedule shuffling, it now looks like I'll be able to attend , so I'm looking forward to the live stream! 

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      • GeorgeKo
      • 7 mths ago
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      Peter Golemme Hi Peter, just replied onto the other thread, looking forward, see you at 11am PT!

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  • Just attended George Ko鈥檚 fabulous 1st session on how to do classical improv. He did say that all mistakes are welcome. Here is my first minute or so attempt at being spontaneous on F-E-D... 馃槉

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      Rudelle Gaje Thanks for sharing your improv with us Rudelle! Love how you're playing with the motif in the right hand, very meditative!

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    • George Ko Thanks so much for your kind words, George. I appreciate it! 

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    • Rudelle Gaje Very nice to listen to! 

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    • Sindre Skarelven Thanks much, Sindre!

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    • Rudelle Gaje very nice Rudelle. You鈥檝e made a motif out of the three chords in the LH and then the RH is commenting/reflecting on it. 

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    • Peter Golemme How very lovely put. I appreciate it. Thank you, Peter!

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    • Rudelle Gaje that was very relaxing - sounds nice

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    • Susan Rogers Thank you, Susan!

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  • Here鈥檚 my first short improv for this assignment. I did what George suggested - I started by singing a short conversation while I just played the chords, then used that tune to play the right hand with the chords.

    https://youtu.be/pv5fo0J-HwY

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    • Susan Rogers sounds good Susan. Nice evocative mood & the tune works well with the chords. 

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    • Peter Golemme thank you! :)

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    • Susan Rogers well done, Susan! Sounds great!

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    • Susan Rogers Wonderful, Susan! Loving the rhythm for your melodies! 

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    • Sindre Skarelven thank you! :)

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    • Andrea Buckland thank you Andrea! :)

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    • George Ko
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    • GeorgeKo
    • 7 mths ago
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    Susan Rogers sounds great! very nice use of F-E-D!

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    • George Ko thank you! I really enjoyed your livestream!

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  • Well just listened to the workshop session - very interesting! So here is an attempt. I really like Rudelle and Susan鈥檚 recordings. You can certainly create a mood with these three chords!

  • Here is a better one. - sorry, getting files confused!

    • Angela Fogg Wonderful playing, Angela! It flows beautiful from one part to the next. Sort of like the Yann Tiersen pieces for "Am茅lie"- movie. 

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    • Angela Fogg that was lovely -you sounded beautiful 

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    • Sindre Skarelven yes I hear that too!

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