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Keyboard Workshop, Chick Corea
Keyboard Workshop Chick Corea
Actor: Chick Corea
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Educational, Musicals & Performing Arts
NR     2003     1hr 0min

Instructional DVD.


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Movie Details

Actor: Chick Corea
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Educational, Musicals & Performing Arts
Sub-Genres: Pop, Jazz, Educational, Independently Distributed
Studio: Warner Brothers Pub.
Format: DVD - Color,Full Screen
DVD Release Date: 01/07/2003
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 1hr 0min
Screens: Color,Full Screen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

Movie Reviews

Description on DVD is incorrect
visibleshannon | Memphis, TN United States | 06/13/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)

"While this is an interesting hour of watching Chick excercise his chops, an instructional video it is not. Though the accompanying booklet transcribes some of what Chick playes, its post-production attempt to break down what Chick does throughout the DVD is generally insufficient. Parenthetically, the best parts of the booklet are authored by John Novello.Note that the description on the back of the DVD includes the following:"Chick Corea provides insights into practicing, composing and improvising. This DVD features a piece composed, developed, and performed by a trio including John Patitucci and Tom Brechtlein."That much is included on the DVD, though you should regard my earlier comments. However, the description goes on to say (in the same paragraph), "Chick Corea was one of the first players to incorporate synthesizers into his compositions - watch as he goes into detail on how he creates sounds on his synths and how he layers them to create new textures."Unfortunately, this is not on the DVD. I found a reference to a seperate product in the Special Features > Additional Product Previews called "Chick Corea Electronic Keyboard Workshop." Disappointing and misleading. Fun to watch with some good tidbits but not overly helpful for advancement. Three stars minus one for the misleading product description."
Very Weak Instructional Video. Not bad to check out for $10
Daniel Marsalone | Phoenix, AZ USA | 04/13/2009
(2 out of 5 stars)

"While I was cleaning out my closet in my music room yesterday, I came across this DVD and didn't know whether to put it in the attic or leave it on the shelf, so I popped it into my iMac and watched it. After the first few minutes I remembered that I watched about ten minutes of it when I first got it a few years ago and couldn't get through the rest.

Let me say that I am not a Chick Corea fan. I don't really have and of his records but I do have a few concert videos with him and while his technique is great and he is up there on a level with Keith Jarrett, his music and playing just leaves me cold. But I did see this video on sale for $10 at a local music store and decided to check it out since maybe I could learn one or two good tips.

As an instructional DVD this thing stinks. I mean other people are on his case for the Hubbard speak (and I ain't talkin' 'bout Freddie, but L. Ron) but I can't get on him for it basically he just uses the L. Ron lingo to tell you that when practicing and learning you should only attempt what is manageable. Like if you are learning Bach, break it down into two or far bar sections and work on it at a slow enough tempo to where you can execute it. Eventually you'll be able to play the whole piece without being overwhelmed and frustrated if you tried from the get go to play the whole piece at tempo. That is good advice that any teacher will give you but Chick throws in the "gradient" and "wins & loses" Scientology lingo. So what. Get off Chick's case.

Now what really makes this thing stink is not what Chick plays but his commentary and explanation. Like he does some nice stuff with Cole Porter's Easy to Love and an F Blues. On the F Blues he starts out by saying that the Blues is like its own voice, then he plays some really nice stuff for five minute while dropping comments like "I can hear a sax playing this line," "you could put lyrics here" and after finishing he says "I like expressive music." That is freaking it. No description of what he is playing or how to voice the chords or what scales or approach he is using to improvise over the changes nothing. Just, "I like expressive music."

On the Cole Porter tune he pretends like he is going through it for the first time figuring out what chord voicings to use where to move the inner voices to counter the melody and where he wants to use some harmonic substitution. Again no discussion of the original changes that are in his Real Book only stuff like, "I think that dominant chord here sounds wrong I like it better with the minor 7th chord." "It feels like I need a passing chord here" and stuff like that. He doesn't describe what he is doing at all. You just get to see his process. He plays through slowly stopping when he thinks he can add something different rhythmically or harmonically working on it a few times over to iron it out then moving on and playing the entire worked out section of the tune.

This is the way the whole video is. Good shots of Chick playing with no real explanation. Only general tips like "I like to think of how the drummer plays and play off of that when I try to add some rhythmic interest to the rhythm of the melody." After watching the video, I like Chick better than I did before. He plays some beautiful stuff when he plays Easy to Love and Mood Indigo. But the only real way this video would be useful is that if you just want to see what he is doing when he plays through these tunes, like how he is voicing and stuff. The camera work for the most part is over the shoulder so you can see exactly what he is playing and he plays through some of the tunes slowly enough so that you can pick it up by pausing the video and rewinding a lot. You could probably learn a lot by doing this with Easy to Love. That would be a good lesson.

Overall the video and audio quality is good but the instructional content is tremendously weak with no explanations given for anything really. Just some general tips and Chick playing some nice and interesting stuff. At the current $35 - $40 price I would say no way Jose. I say if it were $10 to $15 and you were advanced enough in your playing to be able to pick up and understand what someone is playing just by watching slowly and pausing the video then you can probably learn some things here. But explanations would be better. If Chick explained what he was doing with Easy to Love for example, yeah it would've taken him the hour to do it and he wouldn't be able to get to anything else but it would've been a much better video.

As for me, does it go in the attic or stay on the shelf? Well I think that I am going to do the pause and slo-mo shuffle on my DVD player and figure out what he is doing on Easy to Love. It was really beautiful and can be applied to almost all standards so there is something worth taking the time to learn "the hard way" here."