Welcome to Piglet Music’s “Jazz Lick of the Week”.

Here I will post some nice jazz lines to try, and if you like them, add them to your “jazz vocabulary”.  
Keep a regular eye on the page and you’ll find easy to difficult, and dixieland to mainstream to be bop lines, and I will aim to provide backing tracks to play them to.
I keep an archive of all previous Lick Of The Week pages HERE.

For some more “in depth” jazz improv training, check out my Improv Books Here

But let’s get on with……….


Now for something completely different!

I’m going to give you a sample of some “Performance Ear Training”.
Everyone does the traditional ear stuff on a sheet of manuscript, writing intervals and melodic dictation etc. It’s not as common on our instruments. I’ve certainly found that my jazz playing, and the “ear work” that it involves has helped my reading immensely. Conversly, I’ve played with really nice players who’ve done all the technical work, but sight reading is a bit weaker due to them only seeing dots on a page without being able to hear the notes before they play them.

So the way it works is this. (On the audio you’ll be directed as what to do). I’ll play the first bar, you play it back, and we’ll do that a few times. I’ll play bar 2, you play it back etc. Then we put the two bars together. Then i’ll play bar 3&4, you repeat etc, and we’ll eventually play it all the way through.
As well as ear training it’s a great exercise for memory. (anyone need a bit of help with that? I’m 46 and mine’s deteriorating rapidly!).
So if it’s at the right level for you, you should need to spend a good 10-15, maybe even 20 mins to get it right. Avoid temptation to write the licks down. It should be a challenge and your brain should ache!
So play the audio for the exercise, and have your horn ready to go. As it’s ear training there’s no need for transposed instructions – just play what you hear!

If you like it or have any comments, leave one in the comments on one of my youtube clips. If it’s popular i’ll do some more.

So now play the audio/exercises.

Rob Booth

Performance Ear Training exercise #1 (easy’ish)

Performance Ear Training exercise #2 (slightly harder)

Performance Ear Training exercise #3 (advanced)


These next ones are sort of “call and response”, and maybe a bit more fun!
To change it up a bit and keep it interesting, these ones are with a backing track the whole way. You don’t need to memorise a long phrase, but rather just play the lines back after me. (They’re two bar patterns and generally repeated 3 times). In #4 & 5 I’ve demonstrated the idea by repeating the lick “off mic” (which is the bit you play).

Performance Ear Training exercise #4 (easyish) – Each lick starts on a concert F.

Performance Ear Training exercise #5 (bit harder) – Each lick starts on a concert F

Performance Ear Training exercise #6 (advanced)



If you haven’t yet watched these clips, have a look for a bit more improv direction.

Improv for Beginners

Improv for Medium level

“Christmas Trios-Quartets”

It’s that time of the year, so while you’re here have a look at a few Christmas arrangements we’ve just added.



If you’re a bit new to jazz harmony CLICK HERE for a small “test yourself” set of questions (with answers provided)

But most of all, please check in for our upcoming Jazz Licks”