John Root
Musician • Educator


“Ear Training and Improvisation”
for school instrumental ensembles

     Learning to play by ear adds immeasurably to the enjoyment of playing a musical instrument, and is indispensable in enabling musicians to improvise, compose, and perform with confidence.  John presents effective techniques for developing this skill and inspires students to discover their unique musical styles.

     Students are shown how to find each succeeding note of a musical phrase by mentally scrolling upwards or downwards in the scale.  They are also challenged to become thoroughly familiar with the chromatic scale, the major scales, and pentatonic and blues scales by inventing and improvising with patterns in the full range of their instruments.

     John demonstrates how a range of feelings can be evoked through choices of tone, articulation, and dynamics.  Students are invited to explore the rich diversity of instrumental and vocal musical traditions, and to approach each practice session as an adventure leading to self-discovery and technical mastery. 


About John