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Ignore
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#1
This is mostly in regard to blues but it can be referred to music in general so im putting it here.
I saw the Master class with B.B.King hosted by robben ford.
To make a long story short BB explained that he hears what hes gonna play before he plays it. But what do you think is his aproach to effortlessly find those tones he wants to play on the fretboard.
He has surely played long enough to be super familiair with most of the stuff he does but in that masterclass he improvised alot on the spot. He also said he never learned all the pentatonic positions and since he mixes alot of major and minor all the time its all in the ears. Do you think he knows what each tone's interval is and connects the stuff he hears with the intervals?
GoldenGuitar
Organiser of Sound
Join date: Apr 2007
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#2
It's not really anything special, pretty much every jazzer can do this/does it. All you need to do is know how to play each interval on guitar (I still can't do anything above a 9th on all string groups), if you know your intervals (as in when you hear two notes you know what the distance between them is immediately), then it's just a matter of practice. Singing or hearing something before you play usually sounds more down to earth, rather than just playing the chord tones.
metal4all
Always tripping
Join date: Jun 2004
922 IQ
#3
A couple exercises from Satch that still help me out are: "Finding the Note" and "Atonal Scat Singing" which are found in this: http://www.scribd.com/doc/28499449/Guitar-Secrets-Joe-Satriani

-It helps me to get relaxed before playing, even just taking a couple deep breaths (although, meditation is great). When you play from your heart, you have to be relaxed enough to be in tune with it.

-Play like you know what you're doing. Hear the flow of the music in your head and articulate like language with your guitar as your voice box. Phrase what you play or it will get old quick and turn in muscle-memory finger runs like most people do after tuning a guitar.

-Let thoughts pass from your head and concentrate on what you hear. If you hit a sour note, don't worry about it and play it like your mean it or move on to the next one.

-YouTube has jam tracks. I've been loving this recently.

Hope that helps
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


-Max Planck

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Hail
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#4
wow only on UG would someone ask about playing by ear and have people suggest satch and interval exercises

you get a strong ear by using your ear. you want to know chord construction, you want a good vocabulary and a grasp on the fundamentals of tonal music, but it's all for naught if you can't work off your ear. it's almost a chicken-and-egg thing, but as long as you can actively listen to music to a point where you can pinpoint dynamics, accents, time signatures, and basic movements and conventions, and as long as you transcribe music within a musical context beyond regurgitating sheet/tablature and beyond fiddling around on the fretboard, your ear will develop naturally and organically

how much architectural knowledge that requires depends on the individual learning and playing, but i assure you that someone like BB King understands the conventions of the music he plays, even if he can't necessarily verbalize it, and he can use his ear and his fingerboard to portray what he needs to portray.

exercises trivialize that sense of self-exploration and the work that comes with connecting little synapses of music until you reach a point where you can function musically as an individual. it's like the teacher saying "do what you want" and the student replying "how do i do that?"

just learn music. not shapes, not scales. intervals, chord construction, all these things are important information for understanding the functions of things, but learn these parallel and in tangent to learning music from people who inspire you, from music you want to explore, from genres you're unfamiliar with - whatever makes you want to make music, learn it, by ear, in context. there's simply no substitute.
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HotspurJr
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#5
Quote by Ignore
This is mostly in regard to blues but it can be referred to music in general so im putting it here.
I saw the Master class with B.B.King hosted by robben ford.
To make a long story short BB explained that he hears what hes gonna play before he plays it. But what do you think is his aproach to effortlessly find those tones he wants to play on the fretboard.
He has surely played long enough to be super familiair with most of the stuff he does but in that masterclass he improvised alot on the spot. He also said he never learned all the pentatonic positions and since he mixes alot of major and minor all the time its all in the ears. Do you think he knows what each tone's interval is and connects the stuff he hears with the intervals?


I don't know how to explain it, but the simple truth is the more you play, the more you work on your ear, the easier this gets. I've been playing for far less time than BB has and I seem to hit it pretty consistently, although sometimes I miss.

Of course, if I know what key it's in, I never miss. I orient myself and then go. That's the only tricky part, that first note. If you don't know what key you're in you have to guess. But usually you can look at what the other musicians are playing and combine that with your ear and guess.

Use the funtional ear trainer! (Free download from miles.be). This all seems impossible until you start getting that down. Then you glance over, see someone's playing an "A" chord but your ear tells you it sounds like a V so you know that you're in D. Voila! With practice and experience is just because intuitive and easy.
Hail
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#6
Quote by HotspurJr


Of course, if I know what key it's in, I never miss. I orient myself and then go. That's the only tricky part, that first note. If you don't know what key you're in you have to guess. But usually you can look at what the other musicians are playing and combine that with your ear and guess.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N_jFAhN6V9s

good video
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Ignore
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#7
That was a great video! Yeah i have noticed improvement in it too, ecspecially when im a few minutes into playing, i start to hear it alot better and also hit what i hear.

But then there are days or better said, times when i wanna play something right of the bat, picking up the guitar and i usually spend some time getting accustomed to the key or sound first.

I wanna reach a level where i can just do exactly that. I hear what i wanna play and then i know exactly where it is i have to go.
Last edited by Ignore at Oct 27, 2012,
metal4all
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#9
Quote by Hail
wow only on UG would someone ask about playing by ear and have people suggest satch and interval exercises
What are you talking about, ignoramus? All I did was share a few things that have helped me improvise and play what I hear. Those exercises make the fretboard very familiar and train your ear at the same time (provided you remember to tune before playing).
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


-Max Planck

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Hail
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#10
Quote by metal4all
What are you talking about, ignoramus? All I did was share a few things that have helped me improvise and play what I hear. Those exercises make the fretboard very familiar and train your ear at the same time (provided you remember to tune before playing).


yeah but satch is so 2004

and i don't like people to take him seriously at all beyond his music and playing cause when he gets into pitch axis it gets really really obvious that he only has a high school theory education
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HotspurJr
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#11
Quote by Ignore

I wanna reach a level where i can just do exactly that. I hear what i wanna play and then i know exactly where it is i have to go.


Nothing - and I mean absolutely nothing - has helped me with this as much as the functional ear trainer. Download it and use it. Multiple times a week for just a few minutes each time.

It's not a light switch, where one day all of a sudden you hear it all. Instead, with work, over time, you just get a little bit better at it and a little bit better at it and a little bit better at it. You get faster and faster are identifying where the note is relative to the tonic with less an less work and fewer mistakes.

And then before you know it you pick up a guitar and are doing exactly what he's talking about in that video.
macashmack
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#12
I think that, along with functional ear trainer, you should transcribe a lot of music and see how it flows together.
Also, learn your scales - Not just in the way your fingers move, but with the actual notes in the scale, and the intervals. Learn all the notes on the neck, and sing your scales as you play them. Sing a line, and then figure out how it's played on the guitar neck. Know your scales physically back and forth, combined with a spoonful of solfeggi (i have a constant stiffy for solfeggi) will allow you to do this pretty quickly. Eventually you'll be able to do this pretty quick, and then without the singing part.
91RG350
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#13
Quote by macashmack
.....Learn all the notes on the neck.....

+1
Fantastic advice. TS could benefit from your experience. How did you do it?
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mdc
UG's Mr Chord Man
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#14
Quote by Ignore
This is mostly in regard to blues but it can be referred to music in general so im putting it here.
I saw the Master class with B.B.King hosted by robben ford.
To make a long story short BB explained that he hears what hes gonna play before he plays it. But what do you think is his aproach to effortlessly find those tones he wants to play on the fretboard.
He has surely played long enough to be super familiair with most of the stuff he does but in that masterclass he improvised alot on the spot. He also said he never learned all the pentatonic positions and since he mixes alot of major and minor all the time its all in the ears. Do you think he knows what each tone's interval is and connects the stuff he hears with the intervals?

Most guitarists think about what notes to play before playing a phrase.

Instead, try conceiving the rhythm first and adding notes to it...

It works for Dizzy Gillespie, Wayne Krantz and many, many other greats!
macashmack
Maskcashmack
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#16
Quote by 91RG350
+1
Fantastic advice. TS could benefit from your experience. How did you do it?


I would just play and name all the notes on all the strings to the first three frets, then after a few days when i had than down, i would do another 3 frets up, until i hit the 12th fret, in which i pretty much had it all, but i continued up to (in my case) the 22nd fret.
It wasn't fun, but it was pretty effective. Took me a week or two to get a feel, and from there just playing and saying, "This note id Db" etc solidified it. After a while you just remember.
You could also probably print out a blank fretboard and write them out if you don't have access to your guitar for whatever reason.
CryogenicHusk
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#17
Quote by Hail
yeah but satch is so 2004

and i don't like people to take him seriously at all beyond his music and playing cause when he gets into pitch axis it gets really really obvious that he only has a high school theory education


I'm hardly an expert, but in IMHO Satch is more of a blues/blues rock person. The ones of his kind that know theory usually know what they need to know and do well like that without having to delve deeper.
Hail
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#18
Quote by CryogenicHusk
I'm hardly an expert, but in IMHO Satch is more of a blues/blues rock person. The ones of his kind that know theory usually know what they need to know and do well like that without having to delve deeper.


he'll tell you otherwise lol
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steven seagull
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#19
Quote by CryogenicHusk
I'm hardly an expert, but in IMHO Satch is more of a blues/blues rock person. The ones of his kind that know theory usually know what they need to know and do well like that without having to delve deeper.

Oh my
Actually called Mark!

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CryogenicHusk
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#20
Quote by Hail
he'll tell you otherwise lol


Fair enough. There are opinions and he seems like a fairly down-to-earth guy, so I don't think he would be OFFENDED per se. He did decide to take the guitar upon being inspired by Hendrix (who was a blues rock player) is the story, no? I don't think he'd get angry at me . And although I see obvious influences from other genres, I certainly wouldn't class him as pure classical, neoclassical or jazz/jazz fusion (although I do hear a bit of those sounds on his music, sometimes more than others). And I hear a pretty steady big blues/blues rock influence in his sound. Not dissing at all, he's one of my favorites, btw.

Quote by steven seagull
Oh my


Perhaps that wasn't the right way to put it. I guess what I was trying to say is that a blues/blues rock player MIGHT (or might not...) have a different perspective on things when compared to either a jazz player or a classical musician (both of which might also have different perspectives from each other, although I am well aware that lots of big names have training in both styles).
Last edited by CryogenicHusk at Oct 29, 2012,
AeolianWolf
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#21
Quote by CryogenicHusk
I'm hardly an expert, but in IMHO Satch is more of a blues/blues rock person. The ones of his kind that know theory usually know what they need to know and do well like that without having to delve deeper.


there's no requisite to delve deeper. if you want to know more, you learn more. if you take the attitude that "you don't have to delve deeper", you become outclassed. no two ways about it. i'm not knocking satch, but face it - as good as he is, he's outclassed.

do you want to be thought of as the one who truly and thoroughly knows his craft? or do you want to advocate "remember, kids, you know enough"?
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
CryogenicHusk
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#22
Quote by AeolianWolf
there's no requisite to delve deeper. if you want to know more, you learn more. if you take the attitude that "you don't have to delve deeper", you become outclassed. no two ways about it. i'm not knocking satch, but face it - as good as he is, he's outclassed.

do you want to be thought of as the one who truly and thoroughly knows his craft? or do you want to advocate "remember, kids, you know enough"?


Yeah I wasn't knocking satch either. Like I said, He's one of my favorite players but you're right, there's MANY out there who outclass him.

I was not advocating the "you know enough" train of thought at all. I think that no matter your favorite style, the more styles you understand, the better. Understanding what you are doing will make you a better musician. But even with that in mind, if you write pop tunes, it's probably not essential that you master the subject of counterpoint (if you are truly passionate about music as a whole, you probably should, though) or that your compositions strongly reflect your knowledge on that subject. It's also a matter of your works not necessarily reflecting EVERYTHING you know, if you know a lot of theory. Some things you will use if the style calls for it (although many interesting things can happen if you don't limit yourself to that. But I'm just trying to say there's nothing wrong with setting a limit if that's what you choose to do. Either way it's always best to have arsenal of tools and even if you don't use them all, you at least know about the ones you chose not to use).
Last edited by CryogenicHusk at Oct 29, 2012,
AeolianWolf
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#23
Quote by CryogenicHusk
Yeah I wasn't knocking satch either. Like I said, He's one of my favorite players but you're right, there's MANY out there who outclass him.

I was not advocating the "you know enough" train of thought at all. I think that no matter your favorite style, the more styles you understand, the better. Understanding what you are doing will make you a better musician. But even with that in mind, if you write pop tunes, it's probably not essential that you master the subject of counterpoint (if you are truly passionate about music as a whole, you probably should, though) or that your compositions strongly reflect your knowledge on that subject. It's also a matter of your works not necessarily reflecting EVERYTHING you know, if you know a lot of theory. Some things you will use if the style calls for it (although many interesting things can happen if you don't limit yourself to that. But I'm just trying to say there's nothing wrong with setting a limit if that's what you choose to do. Either way it's always best to have arsenal of tools and even if you don't use them all, you at least know about the ones you chose not to use).


i don't believe in the types of musicians that "write pop tunes" or "write metal riffs" or "produce beats". one trick ponies. i'm very serious about what i do, so i don't waste time. i don't skip concepts - i go to learn everything, and i think that good musicians should be that way. no truly good musician will ever make a single excuse about anything. is that fair to say?

i agree that one work will probably not reflect everything the musician knows, but the entire catalog of the musician's work absolutely should.
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CryogenicHusk
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#24
Quote by AeolianWolf
i don't believe in the types of musicians that "write pop tunes" or "write metal riffs" or "produce beats". one trick ponies. i'm very serious about what i do, so i don't waste time. i don't skip concepts - i go to learn everything, and i think that good musicians should be that way. no truly good musician will ever make a single excuse about anything. is that fair to say?


Absolutely! I am on that train of thought too... if I could learn enough theory and had enough practice that I could write/play ANY genre within minutes (or at least get started writing... even if I have never listened to it attentively before), it'd be a dream come true, lol. I'm talking about everything from funk to modern atonal music. But with that in mind, it's humbling that even if I did get to that level, I'll likely never be as influential as Jimi Hendrix was.

Quote by AeolianWolf
i agree that one work will probably not reflect everything the musician knows, but the entire catalog of the musician's work absolutely should.


Well, true, especially if he has several projects going on.
AeolianWolf
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#25
Quote by CryogenicHusk
Absolutely! I am on that train of thought too... if I could learn enough theory and had enough practice that I could write/play ANY genre within minutes (or at least get started writing... even if I have never listened to it attentively before), it'd be a dream come true, lol. I'm talking about everything from funk to modern atonal music. But with that in mind, it's humbling that even if I did get to that level, I'll likely never be as influential as Jimi Hendrix was.


then you've got the right thought process -- keep it up!
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CryogenicHusk
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#26
Quote by AeolianWolf
then you've got the right thought process -- keep it up!



Thanks, I will! I know it's a life-long process, and I hope to stick to it life-long
Hail
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#27
am i the only one that throws up when satch talks about pitch axis theory though i'm not even talking about his music but when he tries to pretend he knows theory i just want to kill myself so hard
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91RG350
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#28
I hear a ton of blues influence in Satch's playing and I absolutely love it... he's way more blues based than many think. He's one of my favourite players...he has a real knack for melody... not only the grand piece-long melody themes...but also the little fills and asides...great stuff

That being said...some of the "modes demystified" guff on youtube can seem a little oversimplified and doesnt always really tell a beginner how to use it in a song...unless you're playing over a drone note....

...and the inverting diads and triads thing to modulate between keys.... well thats a no-brainer once you've got intervals and chord construction etc down...

... but those are minor gripes...because he has a GREAT sense of melody and song construction.... and I would trade places with him in a minute

...and I'd also swap with the generic one trick ponies who are currently drinking pina coladas while collecting royalty checks....
Quote by AlanHB
It's the same as all other harmony. Surround yourself with skulls and candles if it helps.
Last edited by 91RG350 at Oct 30, 2012,
AeolianWolf
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#29
Quote by 91RG350
...and I'd also swap with the generic one trick ponies who are currently drinking pina coladas while collecting royalty checks....


there are millions of ways to make money in this world -- making money is easy. leaving a legacy is more important to me. if the money is your prime concern, then i think you're in the wrong business...
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
91RG350
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#30
Quote by AeolianWolf
there are millions of ways to make money in this world -- making money is easy. leaving a legacy is more important to me. if the money is your prime concern, then i think you're in the wrong business...


I'll leave the sweeping generalization about my personal and artistic integrity aside, and ask you this hypothetical:

Some random music guru hears you play three chords and a handful of notes in a certain way and starts jumping up and down, yelling; "AeolianWolf! STOP! Dont change a thing! Im gonna get Katy Perry to do that song! Here's a publishing deal! Royalties are coming your way, pal!!!"

...and you would tell abovementioned random music guru to "talk to the hand", right?
Quote by AlanHB
It's the same as all other harmony. Surround yourself with skulls and candles if it helps.
food1010
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#31
Quote by 91RG350
I'll leave the sweeping generalization about my personal and artistic integrity aside, and ask you this hypothetical:

Some random music guru hears you play three chords and a handful of notes in a certain way and starts jumping up and down, yelling; "AeolianWolf! STOP! Dont change a thing! Im gonna get Katy Perry to do that song! Here's a publishing deal! Royalties are coming your way, pal!!!"

...and you would tell abovementioned random music guru to "talk to the hand", right?
You would be insane to pass that opportunity by. It's not (necessarily) like you're selling your soul to the industry.

Even if you aren't in it for the money, any professional musician needs to make ends meet. If anything, this would help fund your REAL musical interests. What if you're a struggling musician in wedding bands, cover bands, etc. who really just wants to play some experimental technical funk, but can't make a living off of it because there's not enough audience for it. Now you can do that all you want because you don't have to worry about paying the bills.

Of course, this isn't really the kind of thing we're talking about. We're talking about the kind of people who wouldn't know what some dirty technical funk music was if it hit them in the face. We're talking about the people who do sell their soul to the industry.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
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CryogenicHusk
wannabe guitarist
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#32
To quote AlanHB on "selling out":

Quote by AlanHB
Well it usually means "artist changes style on advice from big company in order to make money", but just think of it from a logical standpoint. If big company wants artists that sound a certain way, why don't they just find an artist who sounds that way already? Answer is they do.


I found it very agreeable. If a guru likes your music for what it is, I'd consider it luck and just go with the flow and not let the opportunity pass. You can always walk away later if you prefer things how they used to be.
griffRG7321
Theory buff
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#33
Quote by Hail
am i the only one that throws up when satch talks about pitch axis theory though i'm not even talking about his music but when he tries to pretend he knows theory i just want to kill myself so hard


It explains a compositional process that he uses. Messiaen's 'Modes of limited transposition' concept doesn't fit into your typical college level theory curriculum but that doesn't mean it isn't appropriate for analyzing Messiaen's music.

Early satch also demonstrates that he DOES know theory, at least on par with most regulars on this forum.
Last edited by griffRG7321 at Oct 31, 2012,
AeolianWolf
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#34
Quote by 91RG350
I'll leave the sweeping generalization about my personal and artistic integrity aside, and ask you this hypothetical:

Some random music guru hears you play three chords and a handful of notes in a certain way and starts jumping up and down, yelling; "AeolianWolf! STOP! Dont change a thing! Im gonna get Katy Perry to do that song! Here's a publishing deal! Royalties are coming your way, pal!!!"

...and you would tell abovementioned random music guru to "talk to the hand", right?


explain to me how, if i was to take that deal, it would be selling out. in that situation, they've pursued me, leaving me free to my own devices. i didn't seek them out - so i work for them, and continue to do my own thing. don't you agree it's better to have multiple projects going on?

in your aspiration to stop me in my tracks you've neglected to think a major part of your own argument through.

Quote by griffRG7321
Early satch also demonstrates that he DOES know theory, at least on par with most regulars on this forum.


but dude, he plays over so many tracks using the sick phrygian dominant scale!

Quote by griffRG7321
It explains a compositional process that he uses. Messiaen's 'Modes of limited transposition' concept doesn't fit into your typical college level theory curriculum but that doesn't mean it isn't appropriate for analyzing Messiaen's music.


i think that in this portion alone, there's a lot to think about here.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
Last edited by AeolianWolf at Oct 31, 2012,
Blind In 1 Ear
Git-Man
Join date: Jun 2006
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#36
Quote by Ignore
This is mostly in regard to blues but it can be referred to music in general so im putting it here.
I saw the Master class with B.B.King hosted by robben ford.
To make a long story short BB explained that he hears what hes gonna play before he plays it. But what do you think is his aproach to effortlessly find those tones he wants to play on the fretboard.
He has surely played long enough to be super familiair with most of the stuff he does but in that masterclass he improvised alot on the spot. He also said he never learned all the pentatonic positions and since he mixes alot of major and minor all the time its all in the ears. Do you think he knows what each tone's interval is and connects the stuff he hears with the intervals?

well coming from someone who can improvise pretty well, i do usually know what i'm going to play before i play it. but it's not like i'm hearing the solo before it happens or anything. i just know what certain things sound like in relation to the key i'm in. improv really is about putting together things you know in a new way on the spot. but maybe only 10% of what you play is truly "made up" on the spot. the more you do it, the more your bag of tricks grows and the more you can make the made up stuff sound like you did it on purpose :P

it also helps to listen to a lot of music. usually if a solo section starts, or even just the song starts, i'll hear what i would play over it or what i think would sound good. then that's basically how i start. blues soling especially is about telling a story. so think more like a singer if that helps. i know BB king says he tries to make the guitar sound like a voice singing rather than an instrument. that's really a big part of his and other blues players' sound. get some backing tracks, put on some CD's, learn some licks, use them, come up with variations, make your own licks, jam with others, etc... when i started playing, i never played scales. i would learn them of course, but then i would just spend hours jamming over songs or just noodling. now i do a bit of scale practice, but most of my practice is improv or creative in nature somehow. it takes time, and it may take a few years to be really good, but it's worth it.
AeolianWolf
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#37
Quote by chronowarp
selling out, wtf.

are we like 11?


i'm twice that...
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
AeolianWolf
Tonal Vigilante
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#39
Quote by chronowarp
then why are you wasting your time talking about such shit?


because we're having a discussion. i'm sorry, i wasn't aware that age makes certain topics taboo. when you get your panties out of a knot and have something relevant to add to the discussion without being a total douche-nozzle, you can come on back (but fix your wedgie first!).

at least when i make comments like this, i add to the discussion or present information that's of some use...
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
91RG350
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281 IQ
#40
Quote by AeolianWolf
explain to me how, if i was to take that deal, it would be selling out...

Sorry... I must have misunderstood... I thought that musicians who "write pop tunes" were "one trick ponies"
Quote by AlanHB
It's the same as all other harmony. Surround yourself with skulls and candles if it helps.