#1
Hey guys, I've been playing a few years now but I'm still pretty poor. I can butcher through basic rhythms enough to trick the common-man into thinking I know what I'm doing.

Anyway, I'm posting because of 'Shelia' by Atlas Sound. The chords are easy, 3 basic barre chords, but the rhythm is in 3/4 (I guess? Reminder I'm an idiot who knows nothing about theory). I find that when I try to sing with it, my rhythm becomes really heavy-handed, or I revert to like a basic down-down-up-down-up-down-up or w/e rhythm.

here's the song (it's fantastic):

http://tabs.ultimate-guitar.com/a/atlas_sound/shelia_crd.htm

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGXdYoVGJUM


On the whole I find myself reverting to easier rhythms a lot, especially while singing. Same with a few Arctic Monkeys songs, not complex, but I end up messing up.

Especially these two with distinct rhythm patterns:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IQ7NH2jcAAw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OuGHs5nQe24


ladies and gents, please help, I've been stagnant with a couple years now in my development. How do I further separate these two aspects of music in my head where I can competently do both? Please don't just "keep practicing", I play a ton, but I need some actual help. (Maybe some one-to-one time with a teacher would help)
#2
Quote by JamieCal
(Maybe some one-to-one time with a teacher would help)


Definitely.

It sounds like 3/4 to me so you're right about that. Do you use a metronome? Because the absolute best way to practice any kind of rhythm is to slow (or sometimes quicken) the song so that it'll be easier to keep rhythm. I might be saying something idiotic but I believe the song is 3/4 at about 120bpm. So if you take a metronome and drop that tempo down to 80 or 60bpm it'll become a lot easier to figure out the rhythm.
Quote by Jet Penguin
Theory: Not rules, just tools.

Quote by Hail
*note that by fan i mean that guy who wants his friends to know he knows this totally obscure hip band that only he knows about with 236 views on youtube. lookin' at Kev here
#3
Quote by Kevätuhri
Definitely.

It sounds like 3/4 to me so you're right about that. Do you use a metronome? Because the absolute best way to practice any kind of rhythm is to slow (or sometimes quicken) the song so that it'll be easier to keep rhythm. I might be saying something idiotic but I believe the song is 3/4 at about 120bpm. So if you take a metronome and drop that tempo down to 80 or 60bpm it'll become a lot easier to figure out the rhythm.


I don't, but I'll give it a go.

But really, it's not so much the rhythm as what comes naturally to me, in that my strokes can sound uneven, things like that. Anyway, thanks for the reply.
#4
Your strokes sounding uneven is absolutely about rhythm. So the same advice stands.
Quote by Jet Penguin
Theory: Not rules, just tools.

Quote by Hail
*note that by fan i mean that guy who wants his friends to know he knows this totally obscure hip band that only he knows about with 236 views on youtube. lookin' at Kev here
#5
Sounds to me like the slow bit is in 4/4, but the chord pattern repeats every 3 bars.

When it speeds up, that is in 6/4 ... the tempo for the 1/4 note feels around 100 quarter notes per minute (I haven't got metronome on me). Again the 3 chords fill one bar of 6/4.

A good way to get into rhythm is to practice using different note values

E.g if we have a note value of "quarter note", and play at tempo of 60 qbpm, then there's one quarter note every second. (so, 2 eighth notes every second, or 4 sixteenth notes every second etc) .

In a time signatur of 5/4 this means a bar lasts for 5 quarter notes. So, at a tempo of 60 qbpm. the bar would last 5 seconds. In 4/4, it would last 4 seconds. In 3/4 it would last 3 seconds. In a more unusual time sig, say 11/4, the bar would last 11 seconds. Get the idea?

So, from the metronome set at 60, you'd hear 60 clicks (one a second). Your job then, is to give the listener a clue where the bar starts (I'm simplifying here, but for now, this is ok) ... so choose one of the clicks to start playing at, and stress whatever your playing then (play chord louder). The rest of the clicks play softer. The first click of the next bar, play louder, the rest softer. And so on. In 5/4, stress every 5th click with a loud chord. In 4/4, stress every 4th click. In 3/4, every 3rd click. In 11/4 every 11th click.


The next stage is this...

The bar gives you a period of time to fill in with sound and/or silence.

You may want to practise using a different note value to that in the time signature. So, against 5/4, you may want to play eighth notes ... so, instead of strumming 5 chords where the quarter note click falls, instead strum 10 chords (two eight notes to one quarter note).

Or maybe use 4 sixteenth note chords per quarter note ... how easy this is depends on how fast the quarter notes are going by.

So, you can put together a practice schedule, by setting the metronome at a reasonable speed for the quarter note, and then practise over it, say in 4/4, emphasing the first chord of eacgh bar, but then play 2 bars using quarter notes as your practice beat, then 2 bars of eight notes, then 2 bars of sixteenth notes. and so on.

Once you're used to that, you can then start experimenting with stressing some of the other practice beats as well as the first one of the bar. And practise leaving some of your practice beats silent.

There's loads more ...rhythm is unbelievable creative and fun to explore.

Good luck, Jerry
Last edited by jerrykramskoy at Jul 8, 2015,