#1
Hello. I've been playing guitar for about 3 years now, and I've been delving into the world of theory for a few months now, but I can't help but feel a bit... inadequate, whenever I am reminded that I can't identify a note or chord, let alone an entire lick or progression, by ear.

Is there any sort of exercise you guys recommend to help me bit by bit, and scale myself up to where I can start to learn licks by ear, perhaps even entire songs/solos.

I realize that it will not be instant, but any help would be greatly appreciated.
#3
Essentially there is nothing that will magically make you better. Except for practising it. Start with somethign easy like Green Day and take it note by note.

Your ear will get better if you keep trying
UG's New Zealand Resident!
Last edited by Darkmessiahnz at Dec 11, 2011,
#4
Start out with basic pop or rock songs at slow tempo. Listen to the bass line too because it will usually underline the chords being played by lead guitar. Try to hum along with the song. When figuring out chord progressions, just try at first to match the chords with just one note on your low E string, then add the fifth, then add other notes accordingly to get the real chord. There are usually only a choice of 7 chords if a song is in the key of A minor for example. So it is not hard at all to pick out the chord progression of a BASIC song. Only way to get good is to practice practice practice. If you feel you still cant get anywhere you will just have to find a good teacher or someone that can show you.
#5
Start with single note melodies. For example, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, or Jingle Bells.

That way there is nothing else getting in the way. I.e there is not a harmony or second melody to cause confusion.

Then move into single melodies over a harmony, or a song which is just a few simple chords.

Basically, just keep it basic and increase the difficulty as you get better. There are also ear training tools. Check the musictheory.net link in my Sig.
#6
I just have the abbility.
Sometimes when I can't find the note, I hum it and I keep moving chromatically all over the neck.
#7
A great way to do it is to listen to the note you can't get, hum it, and then just move around until you find it. It starts to become muscle memory and after a while, you'll hear a note and move exactly to place.
#8
Quote by scarhawk
Hello. I've been playing guitar for about 3 years now, and I've been delving into the world of theory for a few months now, but I can't help but feel a bit... inadequate, whenever I am reminded that I can't identify a note or chord, let alone an entire lick or progression, by ear.

Is there any sort of exercise you guys recommend to help me bit by bit, and scale myself up to where I can start to learn licks by ear, perhaps even entire songs/solos.

I realize that it will not be instant, but any help would be greatly appreciated.


Go buy the book "Ear Training for the Contemporary Musician" by Keith Wyatt and others. It's not particularly expensive, available on Amazon and other places.

This is a comprehensive course on ear training. It requires a lot of work, but it WILL help you get your ear where you want it to be.

You might want to supplement it with the (free) functional ear trainer downloadable at Miles.Be.