Main Subject Accordion Jazz & Pop 2

Module code
Curricular domain
Practical Classes
Group size
Number of course weeks
Class duration
One 50-minute lesson per week
Total contact hours
25 hours
Study load
339 hours

Form / content / level

Admitted to the ArtEZ Jazz & Pop Accordion main subject year 2.
See Competencies Matrix.
Further developing the technical aspects of the students' musicianship in the broadest sense of the word. Mostly independently but with the occasional support of band instructors and the main subject teacher, students will be able to function in the ensemble settings that are part of the conservatory's curriculum and, where applicable, to improvise over the pieces played. Becoming aware of and developing personal musical taste. Students will demonstrate their artistic drive by designing a program of five pieces that is both varied and suits their artistic identity, choosing from the repertoire listed under Content or similar material (including original compositions and other genres). In doing so, they will demonstrate having laid a sufficiently solid foundation with respect to musicality, technical ability and musical interaction to play the pieces and apply the acquired theoretical concepts to their playing.
Relation to other modules
The contents of the main subject class correspond to the contents of the chosen band and theory lessons such as analysis.

Contents of module 1, and additionally:

Mastering the basics of five-finger technique.

Mastering the basics of horizontal movement and jumps.

Scales: major, all three minor scales, all Greek scales, whole tone, chromatic, octatonic ; in parallel, counter movement and mixed movement.

Major, minor and augmented triads in long arpeggios, three note; in parallel, counter movement, mixed movement and with alternating hands.

Diminished 7th chord in long arpeggios, four note; in parallel, counter movement, mixed movement and with alternating hands.

Major, minor and augmented triads in short arpeggios, four note; in parallel, counter movement, mixed movement and with alternating hands.

In scale and triad playing, deliberate movement and the production of a clear tone are prioritized over tempo. The contents of the module may be used to work on higher or lower tempos.


In addition to specific study of scales, triads, tetrads and jumps, they are also combined with ostinati, chords and vamps using the other hand.


Contents of module 1, and additionally:

Progressions of at least one grade, starting at grade EPTA B.

Intermediate lead sheets: Someday My Prince Will Come.

Bebop themes: Charlie Parker: Bloomdido, Mohawk.

Pop and theater song: Elton John: Song for Guy


Contents of module 1, and additionally:


Four-note 'classical' voicings.

Other voicings:

All four, five and six-note voicings, upper structures,

Various kinds of block chords, stacked fourths, lydian voicings.


Contents of module 1, and additionally:

Alle triad exercises (Workbook).

Exercises (7th chords): circle of fifths, seconds and circle of thirds; all of which both chromatically and diatonically, in major and minor, in all twelve keys.

Voicings and improvisation: connecting all scale degrees, various diminished 7th chords, modal interchange, #IV half-diminished, tritone, planing, modal harmony, lydian-mixolydian, altered, octatonic, whole-tone harmony.

Re-harmonizing simple melodies.

Transposing all of the material listed under Repertoire to keys with up to 3 flats and 2 sharps.


Contents of module 1, and additionally:

Digital melodies with the span of a seventh interval.

Sequences and step progression.

Forward Motion.


Characteristic notes.


Contents of module 1, and additionally:

Various kinds of ballads, medium and medium-up tempi.

9/8, 6/8, 7/4.

Intermediate groove patterns for: medium gospel, fast gospel, African 12/8, Latin (Brazil and Afro-Cuban), shuffle, funk (clavinet parts), New Orleans and soul jazz.


Contents of module 1, and additionally:

All of the forms occurring in mainstream jazz.

Pop and theater: complex forms.

Latin: basic forms.


Contents of module 1, and additionally:

Major and minor up to 5 flats and 4 sharps.

Minor-blues, Parker-blues, consciously applying different harmonic tonalities, including altered, octatonic, whole tone, mixolydian #11, lydian, etc.

Lines, motivic/thematic improvisation, and call and response.

Build-up, variation, consistency and structure.


Rhythmic improvisation.

Free modal improvisation.


Contents of module 1, and additionally:

Awareness, executing the various tasks and functions in all of the ensemble/band situations that are part of the course.


Producing, practicing and playing various kinds of transcriptions of basic piano voicings, piano and horn solos, bass lines and basic drum grooves. Solos, bass lines and drum grooves are learned primarily by ear, but may also be notated.


In addition to the skills listed above, main subject lessons are dedicated primarily to playing pieces.

Students are expected by the end of module 2 to have become very familiar with the materials in the ArtEZ/Arnhem exam listening list on the teamsite, including the paragraph 'The 5 Giants'.

By the end of module 2, students are required to have studied at least 40 pieces, preferably knowing them by heart. At the start of the propaedeutic exam (audition), the student will turn in a list of titles and composers, containing both the 20 pieces from the preceding module and 20 new pieces, among which should be at least one piece from 'The 5 Giants' (see ArtEZ/Arnhem exam listening list on teamsite). Assessment of this list is based mainly on the diversity of repertoire with respect to character, tempo, key and genre.


Contents of module 1, and additionally:

Blues for Alice, Celia, Bye Ya, Sophisticated Lady, Waltz for Debby, All the Things You Are, Stella by Starlight, Nardis, Oliloqui Valley, Wildflower, Wave, 1983, After the Love Has Gone, You and Red mij niet.
Mode(s) of instruction
Individual lessons & occasional group lessons.
Material & Tools
Media / study material / repertoire of module 1, and additionally: Jazz Piano Pieces/Charles Beale, A Creative Approach to Jazz Harmony/Bill Dobbins, Jazz Harmony at the Piano/Frans Elsen, vol. 1&2, Real Books, Charlie Parker Omnibook, The Artistry of Bill Evans, The Funkmasters, The Great James Brown Rhythm Sections 1960-1973, Blues books by Eric Kriss, Nelson Faria: Inside the Brazilian Rhythm Section. Subsidiary subjects to the main subject include, among others: keys/production, classical piano, hammond organ and composition.
Student activity
Organizing a performance (band, repertoire, rehearsals) as part of the student concerts and/or project weeks of the faculty; independently organizing a performance (five pieces, of which three will be played) as part of the transition exam audition.

Examination and assessment

Mode(s) of assessment
Assessment by the main subject instructor at the end of each semester.
The student should have mastered the elements described under Aims. Specific criteria are: creativity, expression, improvisation, technique, sound, timing, reading skills, repertoire knowledge, progress, self-reflection, session participation, attitude and lesson preparation
Pass requirements
The student has completed this module if he is awarded a minimum grade of 5.5 at the end of the second semester.
Examination procedure
At the end of both semesters the instructor fills out an assessment form designed specifically for this module. Assessment is comprised of a verbal evaluation and a concluding grade. The instructor reviews this assessment with the student during the first subsequent lesson. Assessment at the end of the autumn semester is formative and expressed in terms of satisfactory/unsatisfactory. It indicates a student's progress in this module. No ECs are awarded and there is no resit. Modules can only be absolved, and ECs awarded, after the end of the spring semester.
Resit options
See the Education and Assessment Plan.

Module summary

This module is intended to widen students' knowledge and abilities, emphasizing the development of professional skills in the broadest sense of the word. In addition, the study and design of sounds and their relevant applications feature prominently as a topic of discussion. Furthermore, particular attention is paid to the development of the student's individual taste in music. In addition, students work on their understanding and use of increasingly complex musical structures. This module is intended to prepare students in weekly lessons for the audition exam at the end of the second year.