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Skip to 0 minutes and 8 seconds Right. Now in the left hand, we’re going to play what’s called fifth-tenths. And it simply consists of the root – in the key of C, it’s C – the fifth – G – and the third, an octave higher, which is called a tenth. If you go up an octave, it’s eight notes, nine, ten on the scale. So C, G, and E. It’s like the triad, but you’re playing the tenth an octave higher because obviously the lower down the piano, then the closer the notes are together and the more muddy the sound is.

Skip to 0 minutes and 44 seconds So F7 would be the root F, the fifth C, the tenth A. G7 would be the root G, the fifth D, tenth B. So let’s have a go at using this.

Skip to 1 minute and 3 seconds Of course, the note that’s missing is the seventh. Again, we can imply it or we can actually play it. And we’ll do it just by playing one chord to the bar. OK. One, two, three, four.

Improvising using fifth-tenths

In this video, we’ll look at improvising in the right hand using using fifth-tenths in the left hand in preparation for the exercises.

You can download the fifth-tenths referenced in the video in PDF format at the bottom of this step.

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This video is from the free online course:

Learn Jazz Piano: I. Begin with the Blues

Goldsmiths, University of London