Thank You For Signing Up!

Thank you for signing up to receive your monthly music from altobone.com!

Each month (and sometimes more frequently when I’m feeling especially ambitious) you will receive an email from me containing a link to a new piece of music from the Electrik Project. This is music created by me with my alto trombone and the electronic minions populating my production studio.

I look forward to your comments and suggestions as you listen to this new music. And if you like what you hear, please encourage your friends to sign up.

One more thing… I’d like to offer you half price off on my most recent CD, Roads Less Traveled, which I created with my good friend and bass trombone player extraordinaire, Gerry Pagano. Just use the coupon code “electrik” at the checkout to receive the 50% discount. Feel free to preview the CD here.

Well, the first email is already on its way to you, so enjoy the new music!

Mike Lake

17 Comments

  1. John jairo caicedo ramirez on January 22, 2017 at 10:19 am

    Es fantástico descubrir nuevas formas de hacer música con este instrumento un poco olvidado gracias, suena genial..

  2. John on February 5, 2017 at 8:30 am

    It’s amazing!

  3. Jorge on February 22, 2017 at 8:05 am

    Wow very nice work, keep on!

  4. Rick Lamb on April 9, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    Hey,
    Long-time tenor bone player here. You are spot on with recommending transcribing and playing solos as a learning tool. It’s all about creating muscle memory and a bag of licks that you can draw upon in your own improvisation. I used to coach voice talent and I would tell them the same thing. Copy someone who is really, really good and those licks become the building blocks of your own work. Nice job!
    Rick Lamb

  5. Bayron A. on April 21, 2017 at 1:41 pm

    ¡Fantástico!

  6. TJ Gribble on May 21, 2017 at 7:02 pm

    Your music is very precise and your tone quality is amazing!

  7. Izzy on October 14, 2017 at 3:44 pm

    Can you do a recording of “The Great Locomotive Chase” By Robert W. Smith

    • Michael Lake on October 14, 2017 at 7:54 pm

      I’m not sure what I would do with it, to be honest. I’m sure that if I put my mind to it, I could create something, but I’m not sure I’m that motivated by the basic tune. Thanks for asking but I don’t think it’s in my future.

  8. Javier on October 22, 2017 at 4:22 pm

    Excellent…. Buenísimo

  9. Roger abas on October 29, 2017 at 8:20 am

    Wow Michael outstanding playing and electronics . I’ve always been curious about the alto bone your tone and playing are superb! What a fresh approach I saw those 2 bass bone players in the AZ desert also what in the water out there? Thanks for the inspiration keep going and please check out my new band returntotromb.com good luck with all count me in as a big fan roger

  10. Frankeyto on February 13, 2018 at 6:45 am

    Very great

  11. Rodolpho on May 24, 2018 at 7:59 am

    Excelente didática e uma pessoa extremamente simples . Parabéns amigo : Brasil

  12. Robert H. Allen on June 7, 2018 at 7:15 pm

    Thank you again for the music information and the music too! (Robert in Thailand)

  13. Lonnie Paggett on June 26, 2018 at 1:25 pm

    Michael I love your sound’ beautiful tone quality thanks for the introduction

  14. Terry T Brown sr. on July 25, 2018 at 6:53 am

    What do I need to do, to get better at playing Jazz? Is It the scales and listening to good trombone players. Practice all of the scales and memory of melodies.. what is the order if practing Jazz, to be good on the instrument – The T Bone. Trombone.

  15. Michael Lake on July 25, 2018 at 6:49 pm

    That’s a BIG question Terry! Let me give you a couple thoughts. All the things you mentioned are tools that will improve your improvisation. The question is, which tools will help YOU best become the player you wish you were? Becoming a better musician/improvisor involves many skills: rhythm, time, pitch, melody, hearing harmonies, technical fluency on the trombone, melodic sense, and more I can’t think of at the moment. Are you clear on which skills you are very good at and those you aren’t?

    One aspect of musicianship I hear missing from many players is a clear sense of their command of the skills I mentioned earlier. Many don’t know what their strengths and weaknesses are. You ask about the “order” of things to practice. Well, I don’t know of an exact order. In part it depends on what you need to work on and the pacing of your chops. For example, if you want to practice your loud playing, you may want to leave that until you’ve warmed up and played for a while, so you avoid blowing out your chops too early.

    Here’s an example of a practicing routine:

    1. Warm up well. Listen to your tone opening up and pitch settling in.

    2. Play various intervals like fifths, fourths and thirds in order to tune your intonation.

    3. Play Happy Birthday on a comfortable note. Start on another note (maybe a fourth/fifth away) Play easy and soft. Try it on another tune you know well. Listen for pitch. Play it with a metronome to keep you honest. Hear progress being made. If progress isn’t being made, dial down the difficulty a bit. For example, if you keep struggling with playing Happy Birthday by ear starting on low E. Start on low A or G. Master those then go back to low E.

    4. Play scales with a metronome. Set the metronome on 60 or some comfortable tempo. Hear the clicks as two and four of the bar. Start with an easy scale or pattern. Maybe middle F, G, A, Bb, C, Bb, A, G, F. Up and down. Are you grooving? How’s your time? How’s your pitch on those five notes? Next, do the same starting on G and then on random notes. Try going up and down on the circle of fifths. Record this and listen back.

    5. Play one of my backing tracks from Soundcloud (see the forum post on the improv challenge for examples). Start by finding a note right in the harmony. Hold it. How’s your pitch? Can you tell which part of the harmony it is (The root, fifth, seventh, etc?) Improvise but do so nice and easy. You’re not trying to play lots of notes, just hear the notes your are playing and to create good melodies.

    6. Take a break by transcribing a solo – trombone or other instrument. When you’re finished, play with the recording. How well are you mirroring the player? If you have a rhythm track (Aebersold) of the tune, play the solo over the track.

    7. Go back and do the metronome scale/pattern exercise (#4). Longer scales and harder keys. As with any part of this practice routine, don’t play something too hard and just keep playing it poorly. You want to practice something attainable but challenging. Like I described in #3, don’t beat a dead horse. If you’re struggling with the B major scale, go to E or A. Master those then return to B.

    8. With everything you are doing, listen to yourself and be honest about what you hear. Record things and listen back. The weakest part of players’ routines is truly hearing what they are playing – the good and the bad. You will be surprised by how much improvement you will make if you record and listen. And then be clear on what you heard. Your clarity is the key. Record yourself and listen to it right after recording it and then a day later. Save some of them for 6 month later. Can you hear the improvement?

    Answering your original question, to give you my opinion on how you can learn to improvise well, I would have to hear you. Feel free to post an MP3 as an attachment, of you improvising. What do you hear? Feel free to record this and post it.I know that’s scary but people on this forum are very respectful of other’s playing. If you really want to get good at anything, you must be willing to get out of your comfort zone.

    Hope that helps!

  16. Jean Paul on February 24, 2019 at 2:10 am

    Bonjour Monsieur moi c’est Jean Paul je suis de la Côte d’Ivoire donc je parle le français mais pas l’anglais pour moi je veux apprendre a improvisé dans le jazz j’attends votre retour merci

Leave a Comment