Improvisation - South African Township

Improvisation is the process of making music up. This can be based on anything, literally, but for this topic we will follow the traditions of jazz music. Specifically South African Township jazz music.

South African Township jazz is a very friendly and upbeat style of music which usually has a main section that is memorable and then musicians improvise during an improvisation section. This main memorable section is known as the 'head'.

We will be learning the piece 'Grazing in the Grass' by Hugh Masekela. Here is the original:

Making music up can be a bit messy if you're just left to it. Therefore we will instead do the following:

- Learn a 'head'. This is the main part that everyone learns and it is NOT improvised

- Improvise using a scale or set of notes

For this topic there are FOUR parts. Click below to learn whichever part you wish


Please watch the video below before starting to learn anything - it explains how to approach this topic

Year 7 Improvisation South African Township Instructions April 2020.mkv
Grazing in the Grass.mp3

Backing Track

Here is the backing track for you to play along with

It's very important that you can play along in time with the backing track.