Jazz Study

Anton is an exceptional player & inspirational teacher... and a lot of fun! He is organized & prepared, and so well versed in so many aspects of jazz performance and education... What more could a student want in a teacher?! — Susan Muscarella, Director, The California Jazz Conservatory

Anton Schwartz possess the perfect blend of musicianship; a top-flight saxophonist, an inspired composer, and a professional with a keen sense of the music industry and the jazz community-at-large. His teaching combines these gifts into…

…a unique presentation of sophistication, clarity, and personality; before you know it you've got the keys in your pocket! Joe Gilman, Musical Director, The Brubeck Institute

I've really enjoyed your approach in the weekly workout sessions. Your teaching style strikes me as a rare combination of clarity, curiosity, creativity, and practicality. Michael Gold, saxophonist

Anton is a superb teacher. He listens to my playing and singles out specific areas for me to focus on, which has improved my improvisation dramatically. He is engaging & enthusiastic... Terrigal Burn, pianist

Anton Schwartz, Jazz Educator

Anton is passionate about helping professional and recreational musicians overcome hurdles in their musical pursuits. He has taught extensively at the California Jazz Conservatory, the Stanford Jazz Workshop, the Lafayette Summer Jazz Workshop and the the Brubeck Institute. He has been Artist-in-Residence at Harvard University and the Brubeck Summer Jazz Colony and has given clinics at dozens of jazz institutions, including the SFJAZZ High School All-Stars, Seattle JazzED, KPLU School of Jazz, and the Bellevue Jazz Festival Rising Stars program. He also teaches privately in Seattle and Oakland.

Anton brings the precision of a scientist—he has degrees in Mathematics from Harvard and Artificial Intelligence from Stanford—and the soul of an artist. He is a highly accomplished performer and recording artist; see his biography for more information.

To stay posted four times a year on Anton’s teaching activities, as well as pointers and thoughts about learning jazz, sign up for his jazz education email list .

Individual Lessons

75 minutes $90

Anton teaches lessons out of his studios in Seattle, Washington and Oakland, California, as well as remotely via interactive video (see below). He works with intermediate and advanced students of diverse instruments who have an interest in some or all of the following:

  • Improvising fluidly over chord changes
  • Powerful expression through music
  • Internalizing advanced harmony
  • Fluency in the many idioms of jazz, plus funk & blues
  • Phrasing
  • Saxophone technique, including sound production, articulation, altissimo and inflections.
  • The physics of musical sound
  • Efficient practice methods for a busy lifestyle

Anton particularly loves working with musicians who have studied scales and chords but are frustrated in their efforts to use those devices to make great solos.

Individual Lessons
(Video)

60 minutes $75

Like in-studio lessons (above) but via two-way video using Zoom or Skype or FaceTime. Anton has been giving lessons this way to students across the country and around the world since 2016.

Combo Lessons

90 minutes $120

Anton works with jazz combos at his studio, on either a one-time or a periodic basis. He listens to their playing, points out areas of strength and weakness, coaches them to improve the weak areas during the lesson and suggests ways for them to further develop on their own. He has worked with beginning to advanced groups since 1995, at the Jazzschool, The Brubeck Institute and the Stanford Jazz Workshop, and has taught entire courses and workshops on a great number of the components that go into successful ensemble playing.

Anton is an accomplished & effective clinician.

He gives workshops frequently at a variety of institutions.
Below are some of his upcoming teaching engagements.

Upcoming Events

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Mar 14 Sunday
California Jazz Conservatory - ONLINE, via Zoom

Clinic (Online) – open to all

“Jazz Scales”

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11am-1pm Pacific Time (2-4pm Eastern)
LIVE, REAL-TIME, ONLINE WORKSHOP
The number of scales you’re expected to know as a jazz musician can feel overwhelming. This workshop gives the big picture view of how scales interrelate, and how you can think of them as a well organized palette, not just a long list to be memorized. We’ll discuss pentatonics, modes of the major and melodic minor, the diminished scale, bebop scales, blues scales… exploring them with regard to constructing lines, brightness/darkness, functional harmony and more.
Prerequisites: Knowledge of seventh chords (major, minor, dominant, diminished) and major & minor scales.

Apr 25 Sunday
California Jazz Conservatory - ONLINE, via Zoom

Clinic (Online) – open to all

“The Backdoor ii-V Progression”

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11am-1pm Pacific Time (2-4pm Eastern)
LIVE, REAL-TIME, ONLINE WORKSHOP
The ii-V-I progression is ubiquitous in jazz, and gets lots of well-deserved attention. By comparison, many other progressions are largely overlooked. Among them, the “Backdoor ii-V” is one of the most widespread and most beautiful. Misty, Groovin’ High, Stardust, Dolphin Dance and Just Friends are a few of the hundreds of important songs that use it. In this workshop we’ll come to recognize and understand the progression—both by ear and through theory—and learn strategies for assimilating it deeply into our playing.
Prerequisite: understanding of basic jazz harmony and the ii-V progression. Understanding of additional theory (e.g. melodic minor modes, pentatonics) helpful but not required. Have your instrument (suggested).

May 16 Sunday
California Jazz Conservatory - ONLINE, via Zoom

Clinic (Online) – open to all

“Expanding Your Rhythmic Freedom”

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11am-2pm Pacific Time (2-5pm Eastern)
LIVE, REAL-TIME, ONLINE WORKSHOP
Do you feel trapped by your own rhythmic habits when you improvise? Your rhythmic ideas fit too neatly into the measures like nicely stacked boxes? Often we may know that our playing could be freer and more exciting, but we just can’t seem to find a path to get there. Perhaps we’ve tried to introduce polyrhythms but find that things fall apart when we do. In this workshop we’ll learn to deepen our own sense of rhythm while we explore polyrhythmic elements, and discover how to assimilate them in an incremental process, whereby we can circumvent the “brain meltdown” that can come from attempting a new polyrhythm all at once. The result is a rhythmic concept that is both freer and more solid.
Have your instrument (optional).

Jun 5 Saturday
California Jazz Conservatory - ONLINE, via Zoom

Clinic (Online) – open to all

“The Jazz Blues: Digging Deep”

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11am-2pm Pacific Time (2-5pm Eastern)
LIVE, REAL-TIME, ONLINE WORKSHOP
The 12-bar blues is perhaps the most basic form in all of jazz, but it can serve as a vehicle for truly deep harmonic explorations. In this workshop we’ll explore some of its advanced possibilities—looking at compositions that stretch its conventions (Chi-Chi, Gingerbread Boy, Cousin Mary, Isotope…) and at devices we can use on the fly to stretch its bounds during our improvisations. The common thread will be an abstract and robust understanding of the form that lets us venture far while always preserving its essence.
Prerequisite: experience improvising over the standard jazz blues (e.g. Billie’s Bounce). Knowledge of advanced harmony is a plus. Have your instrument (suggested).


You may also browse a list of workshops Anton has offered in the past.

 

 

ScaleMate App

ScaleMate!

ScaleMate is the interactive app for visualizing scales. It shows you scales in ways that make their harmonic qualities apparent, while playing you the sounds you see. Choose from its library of scales or use it as a playground to create on your own.

Average App Store rating:
★ ★ ★ ★ ★  5.0 out of 5

To learn more and download: ScaleMate.app.

—Anton

Random Roots App

RANDOM ROOTS!

Random Roots is a groundbreaking practice app I've created for players looking to deepen their musicianship and increase the efficiency and effectiveness of their practice. Guaranteed that you've never experienced anything like it.

Average App Store rating:
★ ★ ★ ★ ★  4.8 out of 5  (100+ reviews)

To learn more and download it for free, visit randomroots.app.

—Anton