A jazz standard refers to some of the most important songs in the repertoire of any jazz musician. Songs become standards when they become popular with both musicians, and also with listeners, as they become more and more familiar.

There is no set list of which songs are standards, and this will change and shift with the musical tastes and perferences of the time. Real books and fake books, along with exam books for jazz music exams will give some idea of which songs are standards.

Many songs were written by jazz composers, but this is not an absolute rule. Similarly, it is common to find several versions of the same song by different artists, with different chord usages. Some tunes come from Broadway and musicals, whilst others come from popular tunes.

It is necessary for a jazz musician to become familiar with many of these standards and so a large part of time spent learning to play jazz will likely be spent in studying these.
Stella By Starlight, Watermelon Man and Three Views To A Secret are all examples of jazz standards
by BassPlayer42 August 13, 2011
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