Chapin ~ Sunday Combo

Mr. Chapin’s Sunday Evening Combo ~ 7-9 pm

Current Assignments for Concerts:

Below are some steps to follow each day on each of our 3 tunes. Work on the tune that’s hardest for your first.


  • Listen to the head (melody) and one solo for each of our tunes to get ideas
Soloing Practice
  • Listen to the tune while you watch the music and follow the chords
  • Review the improv notes you’ve selected for each chord–your approach to the tune
  • Practice improvising with a backing track

Road Map

Past Assignments

Week 4:

Grooving High
  • Figure out chord tones for each chord
  • Figure out a path through the changes
  • When ready, practice with backing track
Night Dreamer
  • Review and practice your note choices for the 3 parts (2-bar phrase, the ii-V, and letter B (the sus chords)
  • Practice with backing tracks
  • What’s your approach? 1st 4 notes? Blues scale? Playing the changes? Some of each?
  • Practice with backing tracks

Week 3:

  • Practice sliding into the 3rds of each chord from a half step above (or a whole step above if targeting a minor 7th)
  • Practice sliding into the 7th of each chord
  • Mix and match targeting 7ths and 3rd through the tune
  • When ready, use the backing tracks to practice improvising
  • Notes on the head—give shape to the dotted half notes, use dynamics
Night Dreamer
  • Work out the blues scale for the first chord and practice soloing over the 2-bar phrase
  • Practice sliding into the 3rd of the V chord of the ii-V progression (measures 14 and 15 of the head)
  • Practice the two dominant scales to play over the two 7sus chords
  • Use the backing track to learn the tune’s form and begin improvising
Groovin’ High — while we haven’t played this tune yet…
  • Find places where you can apply the 3rd targeting we’ve been working on
  • Find all of the ii-V’s and ii-V-I’s in the tune
  • Figure out the scales and chord tones for the chords
  • Listen to the tune to learn the melody and form

Week 2:

Listen to all of the tunes (with your music in front of you) (see listening links below)

  • Be able to sing the melody
Find one lick from the Walkin’ solos that you can use in your playing
    • Walkin
      • Review 1st 4 notes
      • Review blues scale
      • Figure out scales and chord tones for every chord in the tune
      • Find the #11 for each chord
    • Practice improvising over Walkin
    • Plan your improvising approach to Night Dreamer
      • Figure out blues notes or chord tones (or both) for the 2-measure repeating chord progression
      • Figure out the scales and chords for the ii-V in the middle
      • Practice the dominant (mixolydian) scales for the 2 sus chords