My name is Kyle Jackson, from Cornwall, UK. I’ve been playing the guitar for about 10 years now in various different styles and bands and have most recently started to focus on the style I love the most which is Jazz Manouche (Gypsy Jazz).

As a beginner to this style I was never sure exactly how to practice improvising but after a couple of years of countless books, theory lessons and studying for a music degree, I’ve realised that the only way to really ‘get it’ is to learn licks, just a few to begin with, and then practice for as many hours possible applying those licks to different tunes, while not thinking too much about why or how they work or whether the theory makes sense!

To put it another way, playing and improvising jazz based on the study of theory is like trying to have a conversation in a second language after only studying a grammar book! Your speech will be slow, you’ll be afraid to make mistakes and you’ll worry too much about the rules, rather than the most important thing which is to communicate a message, something which I think is exactly the same when improvising jazz.

So this blog is simply a way in which I can help other players out by sharing my transcriptions of licks, phrases and solos and hopefully meet some new players and friends!