An Approach to Comping: The Essentials
by Jeb Patton


This new book focuses on how to play (or “comp”) behind a jazz soloist. It is a step-by-step guide to basic comping rhythms, voicings, and progressions — as played by the masters.


Brilliant pianist Jeb Patton has created an insightful and definitive book on comping. The subject is explored from all angles including a thorough study of rhythmic and voicing styles, and it contains plenty of written examples and suggested listening to go along with the text. There really is no other book like it, and I've no doubt that The Essentials will be an indispensable guide to comping for generations of jazz pianists to come!”
— Renee Rosnes, jazz pianist










Topics Covered Include:

  • Basic rhythms and voicings for comping.
  • 11 note-for-note transcriptions of Bud Powell, Horace Silver, Tadd Dameron, and Barry Harris comping behind the soloist.
  • 3 modified transcriptions in the style of Red Garland, Sonny Clark, and Bobby Timmons comping behind the soloist.
  • Comping guides, rhythms, and progressions derived from the transcriptions.
  • Over 80 comping exercises aimed at getting the concepts under your fingers.
  • 2 CD's containing demonstrations and play-along tracks.
  • Interviews about the art of comping by Harold Mabern and Renee Rosnes.
  • 272 pages, plus 2 CDs, $34 list price.


Sample Pages

Pages 103-105

Page 115

Page 224


Sample Tracks

Disc 1, Track 16

Disc 2, Track 3






More Endorsements


Jeb, being as thorough as he is, came up with this unique idea showing how the great jazz pianists accompanied or “comped” behind soloists. He has done the homework for aspiring jazz piano players. Thanks to Jeb Patton.”
— Jimmy Heath, jazz saxophonist, composer/arranger, NEA Jazz Master

This is an incredibly valuable aid to anybody who has tuned into the amazing legacy of a very special field in jazz known as "comping." This is the first of its kind; a treasure in my opinion. And, it's coming from a guy who has been in the trenches, writing from his experience playing on the bandstand.”
— Monty Alexander, jazz pianist

The best book on 'comping there is!”
— Mark Levine, jazz pianist, author, educator

This book is about to become an immeasurable bridge in the hope of keeping real Jazz alive in the future. Jeb is putting his love of the music out into the world in such an immediately accessible, universally useful way.”
— Benny Green, jazz pianist

This book fills a huge need. Comping is an often over-looked area of piano playing by young players. Jeb Patton is a terrific pianist who has written a book that will, no doubt, become an essential resource for pianists and piano students for generations to come.”
— David Berkman, jazz pianist, author, educator



Jeb Patton has toured throughout the United States and abroad with the Heath Brothers, Jimmy Heath's Generations Quintet, the Charles McPherson Quartet, etc. He has several records out under his own name, and teaches jazz piano at Queens College in NY.