Jazz Vocal Improvisation

An Instrumental Approach

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Berklee Textbook featured New Arrivals
  • Suggested Retail Price: $19.99
  • Format: Book with Online Audio
  • Pages: 122
  • Dimensions: 9x12
  • Audio Tracks: 46
  • ISBN: 978-0-87639-185-3
  • SKU: HL00159290
  • Publication Date: April 18, 2017

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Make your voice sound more powerful, use vocal technique to expand your range and expression, and learn to become more confident in vocal performances.

Learn the art of jazz vocal improvisation! This book will help you hear, understand and apply jazz theory so that you can solo as a complete musician—in the same way that instrumentalists do. Each lesson offers a core musical concept related to harmony, melody, and rhythm, integrating skills such as conducting and analysis. All concepts are reinforced with practical exercises. The accompanying audio tracks demonstrate techniques and let you practice improvising along with a piano accompaniment.

You will learn to:

  • Develop your sense of timing and swing
  • Understand jazz harmony, such as tensions and non-diatonic chords, as well as chord progressions such as II V and cycle V progressions, and use harmony as your basis for creating expressive solos
  • Navigate song forms, such as AABA, blues forms, turnarounds, and other common jazz structures
  • Improve your ear for jazz harmony through studying intervals and chord progressions, and by memorizing emblematic jazz melodic patterns
  • Create expressive vocal lines that work well over jazz chords and integrate well within the context of a jazz ensemble

“Mili Bermejo’s Vocal Jazz Improvisation is the most comprehensive vocal book I have ever seen on improvisation. Her years of research and her wisdom and artistry leave no stones unturned. I would recommend this book to instrumentalists as well, to develop their ears and breadth of expression.”

Jerry Bergonzi, Jazz Saxophonist, Composer, Author, Educator


“I have been a huge fan of Mili as an artist for many years now, and have admired her impeccable skills as a teacher for just as long. Seeing Mili perform in duo with Dan Greenspan is one of the great wonders of the world. They make voice and bass seem like an orchestra, harmonically rich and complete, and emotionally compelling. How lucky for us that Mili has written a book on improvisation from her own assured and gracious vantage point. Her approach is accessible, organic, personal, and best of all, inspiring! She takes the fear factor out and provides tools to make improvisation a truly creative and joyful experience.”

Peter Eldridge, Jazz Singer, Pianist, Composer (New York Voices)


“Creating awareness is at the core of this beautiful material that was very much needed in the vocal jazz field. Here is a book with clever, effectively organized information for all vocalists to develop a practical framework that covers the foundation to find confidence, strength and ultimately freedom as a vocal improviser.

Mili’s music speaks to the heart, overflowing with humanity, joy, and compassion, and this book does the same. Mili traces a clear path, guiding us step by step along the way. She draws on her own experience, which I must say reflects all vocalists’ experience, as we walk this fascinating journey of jazz singing.”

Magos Herrera, GRAMMY-nominated Jazz Singer


“How lucky for all of us that Mili Bermejo put her decades of experience and skill as both performer and teacher into this book. What a gift! Thank you, Mili.”

Tierney Sutton, Multi-GRAMMY Nominated Jazz Singer


Mili Bermejo

Mili Bermejo (1952–2017) merged the language of jazz with the emotionally resonant poetry and musical traditions of her Latin American…