The primary objective of the SMT Jazz Interest Group (SMT-Jazz) is to promote scholarship in the discipline of jazz theory.
Dear collected wisdom of SMT Jazz,
Does anyone have any details on the life and work of Milton Lee Stewart? His 1973 dissertation “Structural Development in the Jazz Improvisational Technique of Clifford Brown” from University of Michigan might be the first detailed application of Schenkerian analysis to jazz improvisation (besides Forte’s 1958…[Read more]
Previous theories emphasize tonal jazz’s undeniable continuity with European tonality. Here, I argue that some of its features are better understood as developments of the African-American musical tradition. As a simple example, consider the gesture ^3–1 to end a phrase. Schenkerian theory would explain this as an elided ^3–2–1, a gesture commo…[Read more]
Garrett Michaelsen deposited Chord-Scale Networks in the Music and Improvisations of Wayne Shorter in the group Society for Music Theory – Jazz Interest Group on Humanities Commons 3 months, 3 weeks ago
In this article, I examine the nonfunctional harmony of three tunes from the mid-1960s by Wayne Shorter from the perspective of transformational theory. While some transformational approaches to jazz have taken the seventh or ninth chord as the basic unit, I use the more inclusive and abstract concept of a “chord scale” to encompass more of the…[Read more]
Garrett Michaelsen deposited Rhythm Changes, Improvisation, and Chromaticism: Who Could Ask for Anything More? in the group Society for Music Theory – Jazz Interest Group on Humanities Commons 3 months, 3 weeks ago
This article discuss the ways rhythm changes can be used in music theory instruction.
This chapter proposes an application of topic theory to jazz improvisation. It introduces the concept of a “groove topic” and defines the expressive correlations of a variety of common jazz grooves. The chapter then traces the unfolding groove topics in Miles Davis’s celebrated 1964 solo on “My Funny Valentine.”