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Jazz Piano

Methods and Songbook for Professional Playing

By Kent Hewitt


“Kent Hewitt’s Jazz Piano Methods and Songbook Volumes I and II (c2008) are a compendium of essential building blocks that the student of jazz must understand and master along the way toward playing at a professional level. “

Dorothy Bognar, piano student


“Kent Hewitt's Jazz Piano - Methods and Songbook is wonderfully unique among books of its kind.  Kent is able to combine music theory and practical applications and present them in a clear and consistently understandable way throughout the entire book.”

Peggy Satti, piano student


“ I’m full of admiration for the many kinds of knowledge and skill both in the music, but also in making such a nice clear lucid presentation of it. It’s a very attractive package …I would think any student would not only find it very helpful, but very inviting.”

William Zinsser, writer, musician


Jazz Piano

Methods and Songbook for Professional Playing

by Kent Hewitt


Over the course of many years of teaching jazz piano to people of varying levels of skill and experience, I have developed a keen appreciation of the practical needs of individual students. Since basic theory can be dull and ponderous, I have attempted to combine theory lessons with concrete examples and to augment each lesson with arrangements of songs that apply the concepts covered.  The result is a step-by-step instruction book which combines lessons in theory and technique with easy-to-play arrangements of songs that every aspiring jazz pianist wants to learn.

This book is divided into two parts or volumes. Volume One will cover the basics of  jazz theory and will enable students to play tunes from songbooks that contain only melodies and chords. The lessons in Volume One cover basic chords-triads and seventh chords and teach a variety of techniques needed for professional level performance.  Many easy-to-play arrangements of popular tunes and jazz standards which apply the various techniques learned in the studies are also included.

In Volume Two the student will learn more advanced concepts to enable a higher level of professional playing; improvisation, reharmonization, multi- stylization, and more advanced upper structure chords are introduced in this volume.  As in Volume One, lessons are accompanied by exercises to help develop specific techniques.

The  Appendix will contain exercises in techniques, drills to practice, a chord syllabus, listening suggestions, and additional references to jazz methods. Scattered throughout the book are short biographical sketches of some of the legendary composers and jazz artists whose songs are contained within.

While there is no substitute for a good private jazz instructor, this book provides a practical and fun guide to developing the skills needed to play professional level jazz piano.