Sax on the Web Forum banner

61 - 80 of 115 Posts

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
TENOR, soprano, alto, baritone
Joined
·
7,785 Posts
I don't think this is true. As I mentioned earlier, I used to be one of those "read only" musicians. What I figured out was that, if I let myself read the chart, I'd continue to rely on it no matter how many times I played it.

For most musicians who start out reading, playing without sheet music is painful. In my case, I had made some progress, little by little, but it wasn't until I put the music away "cold-turkey" for an extended period of time (i.e., several years) that I was completely comfortable playing without music.

In the Army in particular (note that I too was once an Army bandsman), musicians are sort of selected for their 'legit' chops, which means that you're more likely to encounter musicians who have relied on reading.
It is true. Remember, 'most' can be interpreted as 51%, and I'm telling you that is a very conservative number. Plus, the Army band was only two years for me out of nearly 60 as a working musician, so you have to know I have known and worked with many, many musicians. I do have to make a clarification, though - I should have said 'wind instrument players' instead of musicians in general.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
With the lyrics, the only real benefit to learning them is if you are going to play the song 'straight' at least the first time around. Knowing the lyrics can be incredibly helpful in your phrasing and accenting but after you start messing with the melody that becomes a thing of the past.
I kind of respectfully disagree, it depends on the song. Many songs have very repetitive verses but there are others where almost every line has a different melody and in cases like that learning the lyrics is very helpful to remember where each line goes, it just makes it a lot easier because the lyrics are a story and the story tells you where you are in the melody.

It is not the majority of songs but the ones with repetitive melodies- they are just repetitive anyway and there isn't that much to memorize.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
I don't think this is true. As I mentioned earlier, I used to be one of those "read only" musicians. What I figured out was that, if I let myself read the chart, I'd continue to rely on it no matter how many times I played it.

For most musicians who start out reading, playing without sheet music is painful. In my case, I had made some progress, little by little, but it wasn't until I put the music away "cold-turkey" for an extended period of time (i.e., several years) that I was completely comfortable playing without music.

In the Army in particular (note that I too was once an Army bandsman), musicians are sort of selected for their 'legit' chops, which means that you're more likely to encounter musicians who have relied on reading.
My dad never learned to read a single note but play a tune and give him a piano and he would nail it after the first try. My older sister was one of these musical whiz kids starting piano at the age of 3, her first concert at 5 and so on. But she can only play sheet music, great sight reader but she cannot play a simple tune by ear. As a kid (and to some degree still today) I was so dyslexic that I almost didn't pass second grade. And sheet music is about the same as a Rohrschach test for me. And there are inherent limitations to not being able to read music but for what I want to accomplish, I get by. If there is something really complicated I may need somebody to show me and break it down but once I got it, I got it.
 

·
Registered
Keilwerth saxes (S/A/T), Selmer clarinets (S/B), Altus Azumi flute
Joined
·
1,194 Posts
It is true. Remember, 'most' can be interpreted as 51%, and I'm telling you that is a very conservative number. Plus, the Army band was only two years for me out of nearly 60 as a working musician, so you have to know I have known and worked with many, many musicians. I do have to make a clarification, though - I should have said 'wind instrument players' instead of musicians in general.
I respectfully disagree. It's not that I doubt your experience, but your criterion. Your original statement was that "most musicians will never be able to play by ear." Which is a counterfactual statement (regardless of whether or not you apply it only to wind musicians).

If you had said something like "most wind players cannot play by ear" then I would defer to your experience and agree with you. My experience in overcoming the inability to play by ear tells me that most wind musicians who cannot play by ear haven't really tried to.

Part of the clue lies in the fact that you narrowed it to wind musicians. Most wind musicians (in the US at least) first learn to play in school music programs, by reading music in large ensembles. In contrast, many musicians who learn to play certain other instruments (e.g., guitar, piano, drums) first learn them in less formal settings and learn to play by ear first (or simultaneously). The fact that this inability is mostly restricted to wind musicians (and possibly some other orchestral instruments) suggests has very little to do with innate ability and much more to do with habit and training.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,018 Posts
I am (or used to be...) a good sight reader, and I know a fair number of tunes. I started playing saxophone by playing along with the radio and then records, but I was also studying classical clarinet at the time. The tunes that I know well aren't "memorized", they are just part of me.

I had a real interesting experience with a gig and memorization. I was playing in a salsa band, and we got a gig for 7 weeks at a club in Honolulu. We were doing a few originals, and covers of standard and popular repertoire of the day, with a 3 piece horn section. The leader (the keyboardist) had written out the horn parts and they were complicated with double and triple D.S. and D.C. signs, only take the 2nd ending the 3rd time thru, that kind of stuff.

The club owner took exception to the horn section reading the charts (something that is standard practice for salsa bands). So the three of us spent our days in that first week memorizing the charts; we had a deadline - either no music stands for the horns by the start of the 2nd week, or we were fired. Of course we got it done, and the process was helped by the fact that we played the tunes every night, 6 nights a week.

But that was memorization. Not the same as knowing the music.

The point is this - if you have a deadline, the process of learning a tune or a chart is accelerated greatly. If you have a gig, and you can't read on the gig, then you WILL get those tunes down, because the alternative is not doing the gig. Too bad that the OP doesn't have a gig on the horizon. For that matter, too bad that I don't either LOL
 

·
TOTM administrator
Tenor: Eastman 52nd St, Alto: P. Mauriat 67RDK, Soprano: Eastern Music Curvy
Joined
·
5,361 Posts
Discussion Starter #66
On the topic of memorizing and internalizing a tune, I've said this on here before, I find it impossible to internalize a tune by reading it. I could read a tune 100 times and still not have it thoroughly memorized. Yet once I begin playing it by ear (even if I read it a couple of times to start with), I can get it down fairly quickly. I don't know why exactly, but I think it has to do with visual vs aural learning. And I don't know if this is true for everyone, but if you are having trouble memorizing a tune by reading it over and over, that means you need to get entirely away from the sheet music and use your ear.
Really hitting it home now!

So I got started Lester Leaps In! Playing along with Lester (and Sonny Stitt), no sheets, not even going to try to find one! I can already tell it's more reliable. I practiced the tune for a solid 30 minutes and have really stuck the A section down! I can feel the connection to my sax just thinking about the song and rhythm. I played the super simple "Watermelon Man" yesterday, while reading off the sheet, and I can't even remember what the first whole note is! Tomorrow will be a better testto see if I can pick my horn right up and play the A section.

However, I was struggling with the B section (is that the format?) Every version seemed to have a lot of change and embellishment in here, so it was hard to pick out what it was supposed to be. Sonny Stitt started running off on me - but I slowed it down and played through. Lester was a little easier, but couldn't internalize it fully just yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
524 Posts
internalizing a tune.......

When you LOVE the music that you play or sing, everything falls into place. When you love the compositions that you choose, it is a simple concept. It's just music.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
I am (or used to be...) a good sight reader, and I know a fair number of tunes. I started playing saxophone by playing along with the radio and then records, but I was also studying classical clarinet at the time. The tunes that I know well aren't "memorized", they are just part of me.

I had a real interesting experience with a gig and memorization. I was playing in a salsa band, and we got a gig for 7 weeks at a club in Honolulu. We were doing a few originals, and covers of standard and popular repertoire of the day, with a 3 piece horn section. The leader (the keyboardist) had written out the horn parts and they were complicated with double and triple D.S. and D.C. signs, only take the 2nd ending the 3rd time thru, that kind of stuff.

The club owner took exception to the horn section reading the charts (something that is standard practice for salsa bands). So the three of us spent our days in that first week memorizing the charts; we had a deadline - either no music stands for the horns by the start of the 2nd week, or we were fired. Of course we got it done, and the process was helped by the fact that we played the tunes every night, 6 nights a week.

But that was memorization. Not the same as knowing the music.

The point is this - if you have a deadline, the process of learning a tune or a chart is accelerated greatly. If you have a gig, and you can't read on the gig, then you WILL get those tunes down, because the alternative is not doing the gig. Too bad that the OP doesn't have a gig on the horizon. For that matter, too bad that I don't either LOL
Right, that's a very good point and knowing the music doesn't mean that you have memorized it, that's a very common misconception. You can know a musical piece even if you never heard it before because it follows some kind of, for lack of a better term, logical "musical" structure that has become part of you. That's where many of the really good soli come from, which at first glance / listening have nothing to do with the song, yet capture it perfectly. You can't get there with "memorizing" the song where you just end up playing around the melody and throw in a few licks to make it sound a bit more original
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
368 Posts
Really hitting it home now!

So I got started Lester Leaps In! Playing along with Lester (and Sonny Stitt), no sheets, not even going to try to find one! I can already tell it's more reliable. I practiced the tune for a solid 30 minutes and have really stuck the A section down! I can feel the connection to my sax just thinking about the song and rhythm. I played the super simple "Watermelon Man" yesterday, while reading off the sheet, and I can't even remember what the first whole note is! Tomorrow will be a better testto see if I can pick my horn right up and play the A section.

However, I was struggling with the B section (is that the format?) Every version seemed to have a lot of change and embellishment in here, so it was hard to pick out what it was supposed to be. Sonny Stitt started running off on me - but I slowed it down and played through. Lester was a little easier, but couldn't internalize it fully just yet.
You're trying to "remember the note" that starts off "Watermelon Man"!?. What you should be remembering is the tune! Can you sing the tune? That's 1000% more important! If you know the tune you could start off on any note and have the exercise of playing it in that key! This is the sort of practice I recommend to students. Play what you can hear in your head no matter how simple a tune and do this with random start notes. The process is to play what you can hear (as though you are singing) and synchronize your playing to the notes you hear. Sounds simple, and in some ways it is, yet it's the basis for making that horn your voice. As others have noted this is how you internalize or know what you are playing. Some have glossed over the fact that this is not something that everybody can do.

Many have started their journey as readers only developing their eye to fingers mechanical approach to playing. It's a backwards journey unfortunately for those how have musical talent that could be made easier (somewhat) by teaching methods like Suzuki. Some ( like mmitchel) have been able to make the switch to playing by ear. Many will never be able to as their brains just aren't wired that way. The majority are visual learners, fewer are aural learners, which still doesn't mean you can remember a tune. We are NOT the same, but hopefully have similar opportunities to play and enjoy ourselves to whatever degree and by whatever means we can. If you have talent and have only developed yourself by eye to hand playing, then you may have missed out. If you can only play music by reading and can't hear what you are playing (before it comes out of your horn) then that's OK, but know yourself and your limitations. Be honest and work with whatever system delivers satisfaction. If you goal is to play music as a professional and have improvisation as a key element, then you'd better be able to hear what you want to play. Otherwise it's just a bunch of cut and paste mechanical exercises. Many have only learned how to improvise in that manner. if you've got talent (there's that challenging word again) then break free from the academic approach and learn to be one with your instrument and play what you can hear.
 

·
TOTM administrator
Tenor: Eastman 52nd St, Alto: P. Mauriat 67RDK, Soprano: Eastern Music Curvy
Joined
·
5,361 Posts
Discussion Starter #70
You're trying to "remember the note" that starts off "Watermelon Man"!?. What you should be remembering is the tune! Can you sing the tune? That's 1000% more important! If you know the tune you could start off on any note and have the exercise of playing it in that key! This is the sort of practice I recommend to students. Play what you can hear in your head no matter how simple a tune and do this with random start notes. The process is to play what you can hear (as though you are singing) and synchronize your playing to the notes you hear. Sounds simple, and in some ways it is, yet it's the basis for making that horn your voice. As others have noted this is how you internalize or know what you are playing. Some have glossed over the fact that this is not something that everybody can do.

Many have started their journey as readers only developing their eye to fingers mechanical approach to playing. It's a backwards journey unfortunately for those how have musical talent that could be made easier (somewhat) by teaching methods like Suzuki. Some ( like mmitchel) have been able to make the switch to playing by ear. Many will never be able to as their brains just aren't wired that way. The majority are visual learners, fewer are aural learners, which still doesn't mean you can remember a tune. We are NOT the same, but hopefully have similar opportunities to play and enjoy ourselves to whatever degree and by whatever means we can. If you have talent and have only developed yourself by eye to hand playing, then you may have missed out. If you can only play music by reading and can't hear what you are playing (before it comes out of your horn) then that's OK, but know yourself and your limitations. Be honest and work with whatever system delivers satisfaction. If you goal is to play music as a professional and have improvisation as a key element, then you'd better be able to hear what you want to play. Otherwise it's just a bunch of cut and paste mechanical exercises. Many have only learned how to improvise in that manner. if you've got talent (there's that challenging word again) then break free from the academic approach and learn to be one with your instrument and play what you can hear.
Yes that sounds good, but I think you missed my point. I can sing it sure, and it'd be in the original key. I have Zero connection to that melody in my head to my horn, and I would have to noodle around to find those notes. The playing without sheets is already building me in the right direction was the main point to take in here
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
368 Posts
Yes that sounds good, but I think you missed my point. I can sing it sure, and it'd be in the original key. I have Zero connection to that melody in my head to my horn, and I would have to noodle around to find those notes. The playing without sheets is already building me in the right direction was the main point to take in here
Start noodling then as that's the place to go. It's not instantaneous and can take years. IMHO there NEVER was a great player who didn't have a connection between themselves and their instrument. That is the key for anyone who can hear the music. Trying to play music without that connection is to be playing in a paint by the numbers style. For those who can't hear the music, reading and playing changes as written may be your only alternative. Once again know yourself and follow a path that will lead you to where you want to go. Rote memorization where you're trying to see notes isn't going to give you the connection to where you somehow suddenly are able to play what you hear. It takes practice. Others have given you the same/similar feedback.

There's lots of instant foods, unfortunately there isn't any instant way to be one with your instrument and make it your voice. It takes time and dedication. It's your life, you can just look at the pictures and dream or take the journey and make the experience real.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
106 Posts
This is the only thread I need to read this morning. Simply great advice all around!

I my experience, whether you read the chart or not, if you play a tune enough you will internalize it. Then it's just a matter of stepping away from the chart (or not), relying on what you know. Charts can be crutches, or they can become aids.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
106 Posts
This is the only thread I need to read this morning. Simply great advice all around!

I my experience, whether you read the chart or not, if you play a tune enough you will internalize it. Then it's just a matter of stepping away from the chart (or not), relying on what you know. Charts can be crutches, or they can become aids.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,868 Posts
Here is my take on this. I realize that some of the songs the OP listed are blueprints for many other songs and hence valuable to learn, but I just focus on tunes that I love. And I especially like songs that are not played all that frequently, less common.
 

·
TOTM administrator
Tenor: Eastman 52nd St, Alto: P. Mauriat 67RDK, Soprano: Eastern Music Curvy
Joined
·
5,361 Posts
Discussion Starter #75
Start noodling then as that's the place to go. It's not instantaneous and can take years. IMHO there NEVER was a great player who didn't have a connection between themselves and their instrument. That is the key for anyone who can hear the music. Trying to play music without that connection is to be playing in a paint by the numbers style. For those who can't hear the music, reading and playing changes as written may be your only alternative. Once again know yourself and follow a path that will lead you to where you want to go. Rote memorization where you're trying to see notes isn't going to give you the connection to where you somehow suddenly are able to play what you hear. It takes practice. Others have given you the same/similar feedback.

There's lots of instant foods, unfortunately there isn't any instant way to be one with your instrument and make it your voice. It takes time and dedication. It's your life, you can just look at the pictures and dream or take the journey and make the experience real.
Thats the idea - this is all a journey and I'm using the tools necessary to get there. I appreciate the advice, and someday soon I may work on playing a tune like this starting from whatever note I want. That's not the development I currently want though - I want to be able to play what I hear and be able to completely learn a song this way.

This seems like the best and most efficient way for me to build all aspects of my playing - if I start playing from the songs I know in my head, I can continue to develop these bad habits and inconsistencies in time, intonation, feel, rhythm, that I've developed over the years. Listening to the greats play and trying to replicate will be more efficient at fixing these things. This road is long - and there are tons of paths you can take - but as long as we are happy with the road we are on and enjoy our stops along the way, that's all that matters.
 

·
TOTM administrator
Tenor: Eastman 52nd St, Alto: P. Mauriat 67RDK, Soprano: Eastern Music Curvy
Joined
·
5,361 Posts
Discussion Starter #76
Wow - thank everyone so much for all the great advice! I didn't expect such an overwhelming response and it is great to know that there is a community that supports and encourages the development of the sax players who want to better themselves, and the community as a whole! I really am appreciative of all the input and discussion, as it is great to see the roads and paths that people have taken to lay this foundation I'm starting to build, as well as the talk of various different methods to reach the end goal. I'm eager to follow through here, and I'll definitely keep my progress documented!

I think I"m mimicing much advice others have given but heres my 2 cents.
1. Create your list of tunes as a set to be performed. I dont know your area or audiance but many of these songs would not be useful for our crowd. IN other words I wont work on anything I dont think I'd perform in public.
2. I think you are better off taking one tune and learning the snot out of it in all keys. Melody , changes, patterns on changes. I had that choice in front of me learning keyboards over the last few months and I'm finding that running stormy monday Changes in all keys with differnent voicings has really improved me I think better than doing 10 songs.
3. I'd really focus on one thing at a time when doing anything. So for this time are you doing tone, time, patterns, inflections, approach notes, add ing space to solo, sticking in a lick or an approach chord. ? So thats is 7 different things you can focus on on one song? Lastly, you need at some point to think of a three chorus (or more) solo as a piece of music with a beginning , middle and end to it withing the 3 choruses. Good luck, if you do 1/10 of what I'm suggesting you 'll see a difference.

One more lastly, you need to get an idea of what you want your audiance to appreciate? (if you stop thinking about an audiance it is now an exercise with the same meaning as doing a push up. ) So you are telling an emotional story in a period of time using different notes to be your words, sentences, paragraphs. Be well, good luck K
Thanks Keith! Great to have your input - and it does well to reiterate points that are crucial! I agree that some of these tunes aren't going to be the keys for a modern audience, but I believe the list is more essential due to it laying a good foundation of the basics that can be carried to other tunes. My current audience is just the internet, as that's where my progress will be placed, and any feedback I gather can be used. I'm going to say this is a 'Set-List' and document some plans for a 'gig' that I can do in this day and age.

I also have considered taking one tune and pulling it into all 12 keys before moving on, and maybe that will be added to my to-do list. However, the basics of this part will do me a huge favor in the basics of ear/horn connection, rhythm/time, matching intonation/tone, and being able to internalize the entirety of these songs, which I figured would be more beneficial based upon my current issues.

And understanding that there are a lot of things to focus on, you listed a little outside of my intended goal. What i'm working on is hearing/playing connection, while playing alongside the greats - which will also happen to help me with rhythm, intonation, tone matching, and time! The other things listed - approach notes, patterns, licks, etc - aren't the focus here. Yes I intend to perform my own solos over these, but I'm just going to be playing whats in my head after transcribing/playing along with the old recordings, not studying specific patterns/licks or anything.

YES. After so many years I've come to realize that relying on charts doesn't cut it. I have maybe two or three songs committed to memory. Having the chart in front of me, I can play it more or less how it's written but the feeling, the subtleties of inflection and articulation aren't there. I feel you can't be a convincing instrumentalist without having the songs committed to memory. Now if I'd only take my own advice. I just find it so darned hard to sit down and memorize music note by note. I don't seem to be able to hear an entire phrase and repeat it on the horn. Maybe that gets better with practice? I read what Jared says and see myself in him. At least he's on the right track and he's a lot younger than me so there's time. I can definitely hear the improvement in his recordings.
Thank you very much! I owe a great debt to the community here for helping me to develop and improve as I have, but this is the one thing I've never done and I feel will be the biggest way to increase my ability. Your experience even further solidifies this in my mind, and I'm happy to feel like I'm on the right track (Finally!)

I am (or used to be...) a good sight reader, and I know a fair number of tunes. I started playing saxophone by playing along with the radio and then records, but I was also studying classical clarinet at the time. The tunes that I know well aren't "memorized", they are just part of me.

I had a real interesting experience with a gig and memorization. I was playing in a salsa band, and we got a gig for 7 weeks at a club in Honolulu. We were doing a few originals, and covers of standard and popular repertoire of the day, with a 3 piece horn section. The leader (the keyboardist) had written out the horn parts and they were complicated with double and triple D.S. and D.C. signs, only take the 2nd ending the 3rd time thru, that kind of stuff.

The club owner took exception to the horn section reading the charts (something that is standard practice for salsa bands). So the three of us spent our days in that first week memorizing the charts; we had a deadline - either no music stands for the horns by the start of the 2nd week, or we were fired. Of course we got it done, and the process was helped by the fact that we played the tunes every night, 6 nights a week.

But that was memorization. Not the same as knowing the music.

The point is this - if you have a deadline, the process of learning a tune or a chart is accelerated greatly. If you have a gig, and you can't read on the gig, then you WILL get those tunes down, because the alternative is not doing the gig. Too bad that the OP doesn't have a gig on the horizon. For that matter, too bad that I don't either LOL
Thanks Steve! This is incredibly interesting, and definitely documents a key difference between internalizing and memorizing!

So, as I briefly mentioned above, my best bet for a 'gig' in this day and age is this idea of a virtual performance. The idea is, i'll prepare this set of tunes over time and internalize them as my 'Set-List'. Then I'll do a Live - virtual performance on youtube, where I play this set-list all together from memory. Seems like this is the most likely scenario for me to be able to set up this type of motiviation. Obviously setting myself a timeline would be very beneficial, but I'll probably think about that after I've finished a few tunes. This is of course a compromise and if I can get a group together or into a band, that'll change things - but as for right now, I think this is the best idea for me to set an end-goal
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
TENOR, soprano, alto, baritone
Joined
·
7,785 Posts
I respectfully disagree. It's not that I doubt your experience, but your criterion. Your original statement was that "most musicians will never be able to play by ear." Which is a counterfactual statement (regardless of whether or not you apply it only to wind musicians).

If you had said something like "most wind players cannot play by ear" then I would defer to your experience and agree with you. My experience in overcoming the inability to play by ear tells me that most wind musicians who cannot play by ear haven't really tried to.

Part of the clue lies in the fact that you narrowed it to wind musicians. Most wind musicians (in the US at least) first learn to play in school music programs, by reading music in large ensembles. In contrast, many musicians who learn to play certain other instruments (e.g., guitar, piano, drums) first learn them in less formal settings and learn to play by ear first (or simultaneously). The fact that this inability is mostly restricted to wind musicians (and possibly some other orchestral instruments) suggests has very little to do with innate ability and much more to do with habit and training.
I don't know where you're coming from with this argument. What I said is a truism - you can't 'disagree' with it. Most musicians are not capable of playing by ear and cannot play in any meaningful way without reading music. They didn't get that way by only reading music - they do not have the gift of music in the first place, although they can learn to play beautifully and have lifetime careers in music. They just can't play it if they can't read it. Others also started out reading music and read it all their lives but they also have the gift and can play as much as they want without it. Some never read music at all and can play anything they hear, within the technical limits of their abilities, of course. If you have this ability, having the music is helpful and serves to prevent 'creep' by keeping everyone 'on the same page' but if you 'know' a certain number, the sheet can be covered and you can play it just as well. That is the difference I'm talking about.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
I don't know where you're coming from with this argument. What I said is a truism - you can't 'disagree' with it. Most musicians are not capable of playing by ear and cannot play in any meaningful way without reading music. They didn't get that way by only reading music - they do not have the gift of music in the first place, although they can learn to play beautifully and have lifetime careers in music. They just can't play it if they can't read it. Others also started out reading music and read it all their lives but they also have the gift and can play as much as they want without it. Some never read music at all and can play anything they hear, within the technical limits of their abilities, of course. If you have this ability, having the music is helpful and serves to prevent 'creep' by keeping everyone 'on the same page' but if you 'know' a certain number, the sheet can be covered and you can play it just as well. That is the difference I'm talking about.
You are a little bit hair-splitting here but I get what you are saying. Kind of like the difference between an assembly worker and a craftsman. The only problem I have with this argument is that it's kind of hard to see the first kind hanging on to music or fall into the bracket of musician. Some of them probably do but "most"?
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2009
Joined
·
5,466 Posts
On the topic of memorizing and internalizing a tune, I've said this on here before, I find it impossible to internalize a tune by reading it. I could read a tune 100 times and still not have it thoroughly memorized. Yet once I begin playing it by ear (even if I read it a couple of times to start with), I can get it down fairly quickly. I don't know why exactly, but I think it has to do with visual vs aural learning. And I don't know if this is true for everyone, but if you are having trouble memorizing a tune by reading it over and over, that means you need to get entirely away from the sheet music and use your ear.
THats exactly my experience. I read many bop tunes for 30 years, never really knowing them. Then I do the aural process and I "get " itK
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
The comparison of the assembly worker and craftsman got me to thinking about the nature vs nurture dichotomy. Are there limits on how far nurture can take us given our genetics? Of course. I will never score 200 on an IQ test or run a submit 10 second 100 meters. But there is the saying along the lines that great achievement is 99 percent perspiration and 1 percent inspiration. Many players have surprised themselves with how far hard work has taken them. While I agree that some players will never be able to play anything they hear, regardless of how much perspiration they shed, don't be too quick to write off your ability to do something you set my mind to. There are many paths to overcoming obstacles. Think Helen Keller.
 
61 - 80 of 115 Posts
Top