#1
So I've been reading about entering this university, and realized I'm in the possible realm of entering. Now I've got around 16 songs with my band, but I'm insecure in my sight reading and although I know all major, minor and some 7th and 9th chords in all the fretboard, I don't think I'll be able to play just about any chord they throw at me.

But what worries me more is the actual piece I have to play. Now, I've been playing for 10 years. I don't exactly shred my ass off but whenever I want to do it, I can play Dream Theater songs or whatever. But really anybody can do that, so what piece should I play? Should I just showcase my technique doing something like Universal Mind (which might take me 2-3 weeks to get it down right) or should I do more of a jazz piece to showcase improv and chord definition?

Thanks everyone!
#2
play a jazz piece. my friend just got in for bass and he played a jazz piece. Theyre not looking for extreme shredders, theyre looking for people that have feeling.
#3
I had my audition at Berklee last week and got in.

You should know everything by ear so when they throw notes at you, you know them. You should know more than just the major minor, 7th and 9ths. I would recommend just learning as many chords as you can. They ask for a lot of weird ones, even easy ones that arent common, ex. D/F#.


For the actual song, just play something you know very well and has some difficulty to it. Im going into blues so I played Texas Flood. It's something I want to play, not something I played just because I thought thats what they wanted to hear.
#4
You should play something according to what section of Berkley you're going into. If you're going into jazz, you're going to have to play a jazz piece, but if you're going into blues or contemporary play a tune that adjusts to that.
#5
i'm actually going more for recording/studio engineering/production, but i also want to study music, guitar, and drums but sort of as an aside. i'd mostly go for jazz too, although i write mostly metal and prog. any jazz piece recommendations?
#6
Do you have any experience with jazz?


If you don't go for something mostly diatonic like Autumn Leaves or Blue Bossa. Any of the tunes in Aebersold's Vol 54 really. Those are easy. If you do have experience with jazz improvisation you might want to try something like Oleo(rhythm changes)...
#7
I spent a little while at berklee, and they dont give a **** about what you play. As long as you can play whatever youre playing, to the best of your ability. If you shred (i hope not....) then shred, if you play blues... play blues. Youre going to need to know how to read, theyll tell you that it doesnt matter, but if you cant read, and you arent a superb player, youll be at the bottom of the stack. Also check out some other schools. Tbh berklee isnt that great, especially if you want to go for engineering. They spend 4 semesters (2 years) in theory, and then the last 2 years is playing with ensembles, so if you want to improve on your instrument berklee definitely is NOT the place to go.

Youre paying for the name if you want to go to berklee, which might be beneficial for being a recording engineer, but as a music it means nothing.


Dont get me wrong berklee is a ****ing sweet school, but definitely not the top school. Oh yea, and boston has ****ty venues to play in if you start forming bands, the music scene almost seems dead.
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#8
Well that's the thing, I can shred pretty well and all that, but really my style fits between blues solo-ing with a tiny bit of shred (not so much). Rhythm-wise I do Lamb of God kind of riffs with Opeth and Tool. My problem is there aren't much songs falling under 4 minutes (which is a requirement for the audition) which fall into what I'd play which is prog metal/thrash.

I was thinking of doing something like Pathetic from LoG but that is far below my potential and there isn't much space for soloing and improv-ing. Is it a good choice? I don't want to take, I don't know, something like Megadeth which is pure shred since hey there's 1000 other kids doing that same thing. I want to demonstrate feel and groove which are my main points.

As I said, I'm going mostly for engineering etc. Is the audition all that necessary or what? Should I concentrate more on recording 4-5 of my songs REALLY well?

E: yes I have a few experience with jazz. I haven't done much guitar-oriented jazz, mostly trumpet and sax-led jazz on guitar such as Coltrane and Miles Davis, but again, I doubt that'll say much about me. I like listening to blues but don't play much of it so Texas Flood is out of the question as it's not my playing style at all. I mean, it's not that will show my excitement over it.
Last edited by dimatrod at Aug 31, 2008,
#9
Yes the audition is necessary, everyone that applies to the school must audition.

Also, to BBell the first two years and last two years aren't just theory and ensembles. If you CHOOSE to do those classes then that is what you take. It is also different for every major. If you do the performance major which in my opinion is the worst major at the school YES it is mostly theory and performance. If you really wanted to get an education at the school you wouldn't choose that one. In ONE semester I learned more and improved on my instrument more then I had in a year.

To Dimatrod, I wouldn't do the LoG song. I know Satriani's 'Always With You, Always With Me' is under 4 minutes and has a lot of opportunities for solo and improv. I did that song for my end of the year performance piece. I would concentrate more on your audition song and sight reading/chords then recording your songs really well. You won't apply for your major until second semester so they might not even listen to your songs until then.
#10
just an off topic/kind of on topic kind of question.... who the hell has the kind of money to go to berklee? i dont understand at all . . . i would have to rob like 6 banks and spend my entire college fund for ONE year.
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#11
Nobody does.


All American universities are ridiculously expensive. Nobody else in the whole wide world pays so much for going to uni.