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How to Comp with Left Hand While Soloing

Learn how to comp with left hand while soloing in this keyboard tutorial from Howcast.


Hi, this is Stephanie Sanders, from Tomato's House of Rock, and I'm going to show you how to comp with your left hand, while soloing with your right hand. So, this is an extremely broad topic, and you'll learn there's 100 million different ways to comp with your left hand. Since this is beginner, I'm going to show you just a really simple way to get started.

So, what we're going to do is, we're going to play this in F. So if I'm in a key of F, here's my F, I'm going to find the flat seven, which is also called the dominant seven, in this case it's going to be E flat. So I'm going to play F on the bottom, and I'm going to play the E flat on top. So I've got one and seven. It's a really simple sound. It's nice and open. It leaves lots of room for the rest of the band, and for your right hand. It's also sort of similar to the felonious monk. He always used really sparsed voicing, so you can sort of evoke his style a little bit, too, from this.

Now if you want to move from one chord to the next, we're going to also use the four chord. So if our one chord is F, our four chord, if I go up four keys, is going to be one, two, three, it's B flat, in the key of F. So that means we'll need a way to play a B flat chord too. So for that chord, to keep it simple and easy under your fingers, what we're going to do is actually, again, have the root or the one B flat as the lower tone, and then we're just going to go a third up, and add the D in. So very simple, minimal sound, again. But it works really nicely when you have that with the one chord. So together we would have.

So there's your left hand. Now, when you're adding in the solo right hand, especially when you're starting out trying to combine two hands together, again, I always say, simple is better. Make sure that your left hand is grooving, even if for right now, we'll just do whole notes, make sure that's really in the beat. Make sure you keep a little bit of your attention just making sure the feel is there. And then just try some simple patterns, maybe some of the techniques you've seen in the other videos, over these. And the best way to practice, I say, is just to have the metronome, get this feeling going in your left hand, and then try some stuff with your right hand. So let's hear what this sounds like with some music.

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