Lush Life Solo Jazz Piano Transcription, and Tips on Constructing Bassline

Transcription of Lush Life Solo Piano Version, and some tips on constructing bassline

Did a transcription recently on one of my favourite solo jazz piano video on youtube by 7notemode.

Check out this Jazz Standard Lush Life, the way you never heard it before..


The transcription I did here is from 1m21s to 2m00s of the video above


Important note! All 8th notes in the transcription must be played with a swing feel.

One of the grooviest part of this video, is the bassline that sets the groove for the whole tune. Here are a few tips on constructing bassline for solo piano playing, based on the transcription provided.

Choose a tune with several bars consisting of similar chords, and simple melody line. The first few bars of Lush Life goes something like this.


  • The recurring Db and D chords makes it easy for us to construct a catchy and memorable bassline
  • The simple melody line gives us space for bassnotes. 


– When you have a nice bassline going for your tune, repeat it a few times before putting in the melody, to let the idea sink into your listener’s ears.
That’s what 7notemode did for the first few bars as shown in the transcription.



Let the bassnotes fill in the spaces between the melody, and vice versa. Don’t cloud your listener’s head with too many notes at one time, unless you are doing a Bach fugue of course.. 🙂

Observe how 7notemode demonstrate my point in these few bars cutout from my transcription.



Include chord extensions in bassline to make it more interesting. Look at this cutout of the bassline from the transcription again.


The two circled notes occured on one of the downbeat of each bar, thus play a significant role in outlining the prevailing chord.

The Eb note circled in red is the 9th of the Db major chord

The C note circled in blue is the 7th of the D major chord  

Everyone should go over to 7notemode’s youtube channel and give him a 5 star rating on his jazz piano videos. That’s the least we can do in showing appreciation and respect to this great youtube jazz pianist.

Stay tune for subsequent transcription of this song, and also other great transcriptions I have in store for you guys. Subscribe to our feed to be updated regularly.

Until then, Have fun and enjoy… 😀

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  • 7notemode

    Reply Reply December 17, 2007

    Once again, Pianologist, I am amazed at what you can do! You pick up on things that I am not aware of. You are one smart guy! Thanks for the nice words.


  • Josh Martin

    Reply Reply June 28, 2008

    awsome transcription of a great solo! Is there anyway to to the entire solo including intro? thanks

  • Martha Dycus

    Reply Reply August 10, 2008

    How do I order a complete transcription of lush life? And confirmation? I love you chord voicings. I want to learn to improvise better so I quess I need to read more transcribed solos.

  • Rick

    Reply Reply November 22, 2008

    How do I order a complete transcription of “Lush Life”? Can the demonstrated version be acquired in transcript form?

    Thank you,

  • Laurie Early

    Reply Reply December 2, 2008

    I would love to have the full song with introduction in the key of B-flat as I want to begin the intro on F. Is this something you could do, I would not need the full piano transcription just a fake-book style page so I can ask to sing this at local events. I know you are an pianist/artist and may not be into transcribing for vocalists, but if this is something you could do, how much would you charge?

  • rewsnat

    Reply Reply December 2, 2008

    rick, u can e mail me personally and discuss about it.

    Laurie Early, If u dun need the full piano transcription of this song, i believe u can find it in a few fake books out there. Although the harmonies and melody might be slightly different from what’s done by 7notemode.

  • Cliff

    Reply Reply January 18, 2009

    That’s the reason I subscribe and link to here from my blog…… and tell all students to about this great blog. What better way to learn then to watch a great player in action. And this boy…… is a great player.

    Thanks for the enjoyment and education. It’s greatly appreciated.


    Cliff N.

  • teresa lee

    Reply Reply March 24, 2009

    thanks pianologist,
    I didn’t kill myself afterall.

  • EboniJoi McNeill

    Reply Reply August 12, 2009

    Thanks so much for this transcription of LushLife!

    Peace and Love

  • Amiel

    Reply Reply August 18, 2009

    Amazing… i didn’t know jazz could be that amazing….

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