#1
How do I learn songs by ear? I barely now ANY music theory so don't say learn intervals or something.
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#2
Quote by Dr Sixstring
How do I learn songs by ear? I barely now ANY music theory so don't say learn intervals or something.


Learn theory then, there is no excuse not to. Go here http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/search.php?value=the+crusade&search_type=columns and start reading.

From there on it's a question of starting with very simple things and working your way up, just know this: transcribing by ear has a learning curve like hitting a brick wall. It will be very difficult at first.
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#3
Why not, if that's the correct answer? Some people are gifted with the ability to at least generally play what they hear, but most people have to do ear training. Learning intervals is part of it. Playing individual notes on your guitar and trying to sing at the same pitch is another way of training your ear. But unless you have the natural gift of perceiving pitch and playing what you hear, it's going to be something you'll have to learn through a lot of repetition. I know people with 4 year degrees in music that aren't that good at being able to play songs by ear.
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#4
maybe you should learn them..it will only help you.
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#5
try breaking the song down note by note and keep rewinding the song and to get the right note down try to guess what string it will be on and then if its too high go down a fret or too low go up a fret until u match the note that the song uses
#6
My teacher is going to teach me music theory after I finish the Hal Leonard Book 1. I'll finish in the next couple of weeks most likely. Thanks for the help
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#7
Quote by Dr Sixstring
How do I learn songs by ear? I barely now ANY music theory so don't say learn intervals or something.

Time to get learning then...have a look at Josh Urban's Crusade articles in the columns section.

I mean sure, you can learm by ear simply through painstaking trial and error, but it's a lot easier to identify sounds if you have a coherent, consistent frame of reference - an understanding of theory will give you just that.
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#8
I was gifted with a musical ear and I can play just about anything by ear, including the piano. But what I didnt learn when I was younger was music theory. I regret it so much because now its so difficult to learn. I would start there for sure.
#9
How do I learn songs by ear?


Pick a song or familiar melody that sounds really easy.

Start figuring it out.

Don't stop.

Obviously theory and interval training helps... but that's the basic process.
#10
Thank you
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#11
I also recommend Audacity:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VHhXQu3knco
It's for free, and it really helps. Slows songs down, can change the tuning of your backing tracks to the tuning you're in, can help you figure out different guitar parts..
Pretty good stuff.
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#12
^ +1

beginning to figure stuff out myself. Picked a few not so hard songs to figure out and train my ear, audacity really helps, especially since you can filter noise to to get a pretty clean sound.
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#13
Quote by Dr Sixstring
How do I learn songs by ear? I barely now ANY music theory so don't say learn intervals or something.


Learning basics is important... I've been playing guitar for a lot of years, and never learned any music theory, per say.... (I didn't sit down and say, I'm learning theory today)

That being said, by the time I started taking guitar seriously, I'd been playing the trumpet in school for 4 or 5 years, and had a basic (really basic) knowledge of how music worked. I knew what a time signature was and how to count measures, the notes of the treble Clef, and how to identify key signatures. Guitar music was dificult for me to learn, so I didn't. Tablature became more popular, and that was better. (I think tablature should be printed with the actual music, but thats my opinion)

When I was learning by ear, cassette tapes were my friend. I could rewind and play parts that I needed to learn, as many times as I needed to. Then CD's came out and that was even better... Now with computers, you even have the ability to slow things down and keep the song in pitch. There are amazing tools out there now that I didn't have when I was learning (boy do I use them now though... )

To have fun playing guitar, learn it by slowing it down, and lots of repetition. To learn music, learn music and theory, and how it works. What makes two or three chords fit together in a progression, and what scales can be played to that progression.

I've been playing a very long time, and I've never met anyone that made it big in the music industry that didn't know how to read music on some level, so don't ignore it. You don't have to know music theory to learn songs by ear and have some fun... but it makes it easier.
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#14
I can read a tiny bit of sheet music like the first 3 frets of all six strings.
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#15
Quote by Dr Sixstring
How do I learn songs by ear? I barely now ANY music theory so don't say learn intervals or something.


Basically, you just need to do it.... and keep doing it. Like anything it takes some discipline to stay off the tabs that you're probably used to.... but learning theory and training your ears will make it easier.

It's just like anything else, it's hard at first and just gets easier. Obviously don't choose anything excruciatingly difficult, start easy, and watch the improvement.
#16
What do you think I should start with?
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#17
Quote by Dr Sixstring
What do you think I should start with?


what do you like?
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#18
Learn a 12 bar blues. Then whether you like the music or not, figure out old blues songs. 50's stuff. Little Richard's a good start.
#19
You should start by learning music theory with a greater emphasis on note intervals. After that you should try hearing out for the sounds of note intervals. Essentially, this is relative pitch training, and to play by ear it is extremely helpful to have a good relative pitch.

For me, I started practicing with easier to hear (IMO) intervals like major 3rds and major 6ths, playing it melodically (one note by another from bottom to top and top to bottom) and harmonically (played both at same time) . After I was more or less confident with those intervals I did basically the same thing with perfect 5ths and perfect 4ths, followed by major 7ths and major 2nds. Then gradually I went onto the minor, diminished and augmented intervals. After the ear training, I would then listen to some of my favorite songs and try to listen to the melody and identify the intervals. It is quite tough at first but if you are doing it consistently you would have a well developed ear.

When you hear a song that you like try to figure out both the melody and chords yourself before searching for the tabs. It helps to strengthen your relative pitch.
Last edited by Rufix at Dec 11, 2011,
#20
Thank you
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#21
I find it's easiest to sit down at a piano, if you don't have access to one, an acoustic guitar helps, I start by trying to figure out the key, and from there it's typically not too bad, acheiving the root note isn't too hard, but getting the exact chord is tough sometimes.