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Need advice on ear training


jazzcopy

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I was wondering if anyone knows techniques or practices to study .

 

Here is the situation. Your at a party or gig .

Someone comes up and wants to sing a song .

They start to sing and you dont know the key.

And you dont know the chords .

So you follow along . but you are not playing the correct chords.

You are fumbling around trying to find the correct chords.

Has this happened to any of you ?

It could be an easy song like White Xmas or O Holy Night , etc

Is solfege the way to go. Or maybe chord progression theory?

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Years ago, I was doing a gig on Cinco de Mayo. There were two acts. My band and Luis Miguel.

 

Luis Miguel went on first. Those clips are the same band that I'm talking about, complete with strings.Dig my buddy Kiko on guitar on Suave...I think he wrote that..he's got pocket for days. How'd you like to follow that...... That alone gave me a heart attack. He and his band are soooo stinkin' good, not to mention he's one of the biggest stars on the planet. After Luis finishes his set, we are maybe 45 mins into our set and someone in charge of the event comes out on stage and wants us to play a particular tune. I'd never heard of it. It was in Spanish and I'm such a cracker. Anyway, I'm the only one in the band playing, as this guy is yelling/singing in Spanish in my ear, I'm playing on the fly, as the crowd sings along. 1000's of people. God only knows what I played. It was surreal.

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I have no idea what it was, but most everyone in the crowd did. That was such a cool gig. Those guys kicked ass. I've done a few tracks w/kiko and he's one of the most musical people I've ever known. Just an honor to work with.
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Hi jazzcopy

 

I guess I'm lucky in this respect as I have perfect pitch! This is a big help in many many areas!

 

But - I still believe strongly that relative pitch can by learnt over time. Any orchestral musician would be able to instantly recognise if an oboe player started tuning to an A flat rather than an A. Your ears get used to hearing a certain pitch, a certain tone.

 

Over time, you can definitely develop this to be able to play through any song that you would want to without having to whip out some sheet music or listen endlessly to a record.

 

I don't know if it would help, but back at school we regularly had to try and notate an orchestral extract from three or four plays. It was a really good way of tuning your ear in and really hearing the underlying chord progressions in what could be quite complicated music.

 

Maybe you could just put a CD of some old piano standards on to start with. Find out the first chord and then just listen and try and notate the piece (without using a piano!). If you're not into full notation, just write the chord name and the bass note and maybe pick up any other notes outside of the main triad if you can. Once you're done (or completely baffled) take your stuff over to the piano and play back and compare. Persevere and you may surprise yourself over time how well you can train those ears!!!

 

Nice one and good luck

 

Aphemia

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Learn to distinguish intervals. That's the best thing you can do to help your ear.

 

Once you know what it sounds like to go from the root to the fourth or the root to the sixth, or the fifth to the second, etc. you can follow almost any tune. You'll also start to realize that many songs are very similar in their structure and changes.

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Originally posted by jazzcopy:

I was wondering if anyone knows techniques or practices to study .

 

Here is the situation. Your at a party or gig .

Someone comes up and wants to sing a song .

They start to sing and you dont know the key.

And you dont know the chords .

So you follow along . but you are not playing the correct chords.

You are fumbling around trying to find the correct chords.

Has this happened to any of you ?

It could be an easy song like White Xmas or O Holy Night , etc

Is solfege the way to go. Or maybe chord progression theory?

I've been in that situation a couple times. Pretty much I won't let a singer like that dictate how I'll play -- you really can't anyway, because they could be in some microtonal situation that you could never match. Just play what you want them to sing loudly and slowly at first, especially at the beginning of the verse.

Steve (Stevie Ray)

"Do the chickens have large talons?"

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Originally posted by delirium:

Originally posted by aphemia:

I guess I'm lucky in this respect as I have perfect pitch!

where do you have it?
Wish I had perfect pitch. Best I can do on a consistent basis is perfect relative pitch. Maybe if I played in a band that didn't play everything a half step down, then maybe I'd develop perfect pitch, though I've heard some say either you have it or your don't. As my ear has developed from not very good to pretty much outstanding (sorry to seem like I'm bragging, but it's true!), it makes me think that someone could work to develop perfect pitch...however, I don't know for sure and would take the word of someone else on this matter.

Steve (Stevie Ray)

"Do the chickens have large talons?"

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Originally posted by jazzcopy:

I was wondering if anyone knows techniques or practices to study .

 

Here is the situation. Your at a party or gig .

Someone comes up and wants to sing a song .

They start to sing and you dont know the key.

And you dont know the chords .

So you follow along . but you are not playing the correct chords.

You are fumbling around trying to find the correct chords.

Has this happened to any of you ?

It could be an easy song like White Xmas or O Holy Night , etc

Is solfege the way to go. Or maybe chord progression theory?

This has been answered many times before ... and is a life long quest.

 

Start by taking your favorite tune and transcribing it to paper. Listen to the radio and play along. Try and figure out the theme song of all the TV shows you watch.

 

Most of ear training is simply recognition - you hear something that you've heard many times and at once you know what it is.

 

Country western music might be a good start. Analyse everything you hear. This isn't a course you take at college, this is something you do every day as a musician.

No guitarists were harmed during the making of this message.

 

In general, harmonic complexity is inversely proportional to the ratio between chording and non-chording instruments.

 

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the answer to your question has more to do with being able to recognize the harmonic possibilities as you hear the guy singing the tune... and as you'll no doubt discover from other threads a raging debate surrounds us as to whether theory or feeling(essential talent) is the answer... after all garner dint need no lesins..
"style is determined not by what you can play but what you cant...." dave brubeck
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this is awesome information ( from all )

as b3-er stated useing intervals/

how would you relate the interval to

what type of chord/chords.

and is it like solfege (do , re , me ,etc,)

and does the do move with the interval changes?

I know its a start to learn intervals /

but what next should I work on? after mastering

intervals?

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Need advice on ear training
the most crucial advised I got long time ago was to learn to listen to the sound also vertically,

not only horizontally.

As stated above intervals etc are important - this is horizontal hearing, try also hear the sound alone disregarding how high or low it is and listen only to its quality. Child hear that way. It was breakthrough for me years ago.

♫♫♫ motif XS6, RD700GX
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