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Discussion Starter #1
Hello my fellow musicians

I'm a new sax player (beginner) with 2 or so years playing the sax - unfortunally can't spare the time I wish practicing but I play every time I can. Furthermore, I do have notions (private teacher - a really cool one, real musician not a part-time player/teacher) of music theory in general.

I learn how to play the piano as a kid so I can read sheets pretty well, etc.

I'm now trying to get into what I think is the next step. I'm constantly praticing the various scales - both major and minor - and trying to get all memorized and really well known.

From there, I will enter Pentatonic and Blue scales.

Well, now the real question:)

How do you guys "find"/get the scale where a certain measure (corrected:)) is on? I mean, for instance: I was trying to improvise a little solo over a pink floyd music - comfortably numb, and I manage to identify a Eb scale there on the solos but that is pretty much it. From there I play and can easily know what doesn't sound good and what does but most of the times after playing the note eh eh eh

Are there any good tricks to improve this area? Thank you!!
 

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How do you guys "find"/get the scale where a certain compass is on?
I can't answer your question, but I can tell you that only a Spanish speaker will know what you mean by compass, because you've translated it wrong. You mean un compás, which in English is a bar or a measure. A compass in English is either una brújala or a compass used for drawing.
 

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Hello!

Ehehehe big mistake on my part: you are so very right. I meant a measure:)

And I'm Portuguese, for what is worth:) Ehehe! And I meant to say "compasso", but in english! Big distraction on my part.

Thanks for the heads up!:)
 

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Sorry I got the language wrong. I figured you were just anglicizing compás into compass, which is a typical type of translational error a Spanish speaker might make. But Spanish and Portuguese are pretty close anyway (in written form at least).
 

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Run your scales in different ways. So play all your majors around the cycle, up and down chromatically, up and down in whole steps. Also add patterns (scale fragments ) and eventually approach notes. Acutally for 10 bucks you should pick up Steve neff's book on mixo be bop scales. Good place to start since you can always imply a V7 within a major tonality. Good luck, its all about the work. K
 

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lots of ways to do this but good place to start is take a C arpeggio and approach each chord tone by a half step. So you go B to C, Eb to E, Gb to G and then B to C. You are training yourself to use different ways to end up on a specific note. Cparker was a master at this. Check out the omnibook. If you are an alto it should be your "bible". so to speak. good luck. K
 

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Also, if the Omnibook looks "scary" because you are a new. Just play it real real real real slow. So make the sixteenths into eights etc. Slow it down, put it to a metronome and slowly get faster. K
 

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...

I do have notions (private teacher - a really cool one, real musician not a part-time player/teacher) of music theory in general.
It's good that you have a teacher (if I am interpreting that right); but a little side study never hurt anyone. I have learned a lot from this website... Jazzclass Scales and Chords

I learn how to play the piano as a kid so I can read sheets pretty well, etc.
Piano sheets are very different from lead sheets used for modern music
The lead sheet for modern music will tell you when the key/chord changes. It is much easier to play along if you already know when the key will change. Learning to do it by ear without knowing the changes may take a while. There are lots of resources to look up the changes for whatever song you are interested in learning. I found this one via google.. Comfortably Numb on eChords.com wikiphonia.org is good too, but they didn't have Comfortably Numb yet. The next task is learning how the song is structured, 8-bar, 16-bar, AABA sections, etc. Most modern music is just a bunch of repeated series of chord changes. The solo section will be just as long as the lyric section and will consist of the same chord/key changes. That is why alot of people will say, know the lyrics to the song you are trying to play, because that helps to remind you of where you are in the overall structure of the tune.

I'm now trying to get into what I think is the next step. I'm constantly praticing the various scales - both major and minor - and trying to get all memorized and really well known.

From there, I will enter Pentatonic and Blue scales.
Focus on the majors, the minors are just the majors starting from a different note. Pentatonics and Blues are also derived from the majors. (see above link to Jazzclass scales).

It would be good to start on the Pentatonic and Blues scales now since they are a very useful set of notes that can be played over a whole song without worrying about clashing with the current key. (remember, it changes frequently)

How do you guys "find"/get the scale where a certain measure (corrected:)) is on? I mean, for instance: I was trying to improvise a little solo over a pink floyd music - comfortably numb, and I manage to identify a Eb scale there on the solos but that is pretty much it. From there I play and can easily know what doesn't sound good and what does but most of the times after playing the note eh eh eh

Are there any good tricks to improve this area? Thank you!!
I certainly can't do this yet, I hear "ear training" can help you get there. It is much easier to learn a song (and play a solo) if you know what the changes and melody are.
 

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Thanks a lot for your help, bookmarked all the links you provided:) thanks!

Will look more into the major and minors and absolutely give more attention to pentatonic/blue scales - think I didn't pay enough attention to those.

Thanks!
 

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I try to do just that but I was wondering how I can train this area:)
Well we all start off by cheating.
We get the music or have somebody show us.
After a while if you do this for long enough, you will start to hear
the changes.

Start off by trying to identify - is it Major or minor.
Most people, even beginners can hear this difference.

Then if it is a major sound, see if you can identify whether
is a natural major chord (ie major 7th, 6th), or a dominant chord (flat 7th).

Most minors in popular music can be played as minor 7ths (b7),
so you don't need to be too concerned with these.
Minors with major 7th's are not so common.

Then listen to diminished and augmented chords. These have
very specific and obvious sounds.

Do this and you are already on your way..
 
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