Much neglected, I have started my journey through the minor 2 5 1s through all the keys.

I have developed the following voicings which I like. (I’m sure they are not original!)

On the 2: b5 – 7 – 1 – 11 (so Dm7/b5 = Ab C D and G)

On the 5: #9 – 3 – #5 – 7 (So GAlt = Bb B Eb F)

On the 1: 6 (or7) – 9 – b3 – 5 (so Cm9 or 6/9 = A (or Bb) D Eb G

I like to call these B voicings as they are quite bunched together. I am running (slowly!) through all the keys, playing the chords with my left hand and the scales with my right:

  • Locrian over the m7/b5
  • Altered over the 5
  • Dorian or Aeolian over the the 1

I hope the suffering is worth it!

I asked one of my dear pupils which part of this Gene Harris version of Blue Bossa he would like to learn – and he chose this incredible chordal run you will find 1m57s in from this video: I transcribed the right hand by ear and added a deepening counter-movement to spread my hands out across the whole keyboard. I have been practising this every day for ages. It’s just about ready to show off! Message me if you would like the transcription!

Some Day My Prince Will Come is one of my favourites. I love the chord sequence and that beautiful flowing soloing by Wynton Kelly. I have played around with different time signatures. 11/8 (to tease our dear drummer) – but it wasn’t really suitable. 5/4 sounds pretty good!