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> How To Learn A Song
Qenzoz
post Jul 23 2011, 07:22 AM
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Hello, I was wondering, how should I learn a song?

So I'm just gonna give some examples, and you can tell me which one you think is best, or maybe you have an idea of your own thats better tongue.gif

1) Isolate part by part
e.g. lets say here at GMC you're learning a song, and you first get the part 1 down, perfectly, then you move to part 2, get that down perfectly and then combine it with part 1 and make sure its perfect, and move on to part 3, and do the same thing, over and over till you've got it down.

2) Get it all down
e.g. you learn everything, so you can play it at a "okay" speed, and you have it all down, all the riffs, the solo, etc, and then you just keep playing it over and over again till it is at the right speed.

3) Area by area
e.g. you learn all the riffs first, after you have all that down perfectly, you learn the solo, and then you have that down, you combine it.


Thanks in advance smile.gif,
best regards Tobias.


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Azzaboi
post Jul 23 2011, 08:19 AM
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The best way I've found is...

1) Break it down into small pieces (specially if you can loop them over and over when playing to practice)
2) Isolate areas of difficulty (once your've learn a part and then get stuck on the next, don't keep going back to replay it all as your wasting time replaying the part you already know just to get stuck again. Instead work on breaking down the difficult area)
3) Create Variations (so you can't figure out how to play it or it's really hard and your about to bang your head against the wall, reinvent it, do something like it but different, even exaggerate the difficulty, practice exercises around that and then try again)
4) Work on transition time
5) Work on dynamics
6) Practice in Bursts (take breaks and come back to it)

Practice just with the left hand techniques and then swap and focus on the right hand.

Now, put it all together building in both directions.


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Cosmin Lupu
post Jul 23 2011, 08:20 AM
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I'd vote for 1) but before getting to actually play something, I'd first understand the theory behind it smile.gif


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Qenzoz
post Jul 23 2011, 11:02 AM
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Thanks & may I ask, what do you exactly mean by that? smile.gif
QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Jul 23 2011, 09:20 AM) *
I'd vote for 1) but before getting to actually play something, I'd first understand the theory behind it smile.gif


Thanks smile.gif
QUOTE (Azzaboi @ Jul 23 2011, 09:19 AM) *
The best way I've found is...

1) Break it down into small pieces (specially if you can loop them over and over when playing to practice)
2) Isolate areas of difficulty (once your've learn a part and then get stuck on the next, don't keep going back to replay it all as your wasting time replaying the part you already know just to get stuck again. Instead work on breaking down the difficult area)
3) Create Variations (so you can't figure out how to play it or it's really hard and your about to bang your head against the wall, reinvent it, do something like it but different, even exaggerate the difficulty, practice exercises around that and then try again)
4) Work on transition time
5) Work on dynamics
6) Practice in Bursts (take breaks and come back to it)

Practice just with the left hand techniques and then swap and focus on the right hand.

Now, put it all together building in both directions.



This post has been edited by Qenzoz: Jul 23 2011, 11:04 AM


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Cosmin Lupu
post Jul 23 2011, 11:34 AM
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By that, I mean, don't just try to emulate what you hear in the lesson without understanding what the creator of that tune started from:
- what chords he used, scales, intervals
- accents used in respect to the time signature
- the rhythmic formulas which may appear as repetitive themes - the way they are built and developed
- the way in which the melodies relate to the chord structures

these are just a few examples, but what I'm trying to highlight here is: if you just learn a piece by heart without understanding it, you won't be able to use elements or techniques which are included in it for your own creations - it's just like speaking Japanese without having a clue on what you're really saying there biggrin.gif

In my opinion this should be your goal - understand the way others think so that you may enlarge your musical vocabulary, technical knowledge and writing skills.

Hope I was clear enough tongue.gif


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dark dude
post Jul 23 2011, 11:38 AM
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An obvious one, but, very important to be very familiar with the track. Play it again and again until it sticks in your head, many things will fall into place.


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thefireball
post Jul 23 2011, 12:04 PM
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I use method number 2. I get tired of trying to perfect one section. I want to move on. I'll put it together and then perfect it. However, I haven't done what Cosmin said to do. I guess I should start doing that. happy.gif


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Mike RR24
post Jul 23 2011, 08:12 PM
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I'm not an expert here but Cosmin hit a WoW button in me when he explained it the way he did.
Music is a language. When I was going to school to learning spanish I kept thinking well I'm just going to learn to speak and then I'll learn the rules and theory of the language. This would be just like speaking and not knowing what it meant. Hearing it and repeating it but having no idea the meaning of it. I've had that approach lately with music where as I want to duplicate it but have no understanding of the scales or modes used to construct it, much less the timing that is used. Thanks Cosmin.... I really appreciate it. You just helped me look at music in another light. The language that it is !!!


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Ivan Milenkovic
post Jul 23 2011, 08:29 PM
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When I'm learning new song, I listen to the song, see what key is the song in, and try to cover the rhythm by ear. If there is a recognizable solo, I will dedicate some time learning it, if it's simple I'll play it by ear, if it's complex, I'll use the tab as a guideline. If there is a non-recognizable solo, I'll just improvise. When I learn to play all the components, verse, chorus, bridge etc.. I'll write the arrangement on a paper to help me memorize it better. I don't usually have problems playing anything, it's more of memorizing the arrangement, that's the problem for me..


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MonkeyDAthos
post Jul 23 2011, 08:31 PM
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if you just want to learn a song! for simply playing it, you can do as me.

get a Guitar Pro file of the song, Slow it down like 100-60bpm, and play it all, that will give a more, how do i say :x wide vision of what parts you need to break.

then, Select the part and put it on the Guitar Pro Loop, and train it.

Otherwise, you can do as Cosmin said, that's how you truly learn a song, also trying learning from ear, is a great training to your music awareness, but if you do it by ear, don't just you know hear the chord and try find it in your guitar neck. !Hear it, internalize it!

This post has been edited by MonkeyDAthos: Jul 23 2011, 08:37 PM


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Cosmin Lupu
post Jul 23 2011, 08:58 PM
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Well, I usually like to listen to a song a lot before getting to play it - internalization is the word here. Get acquainted with the music smile.gif once you can hum it you'll be able to learn it much easier. Hearing and theoretical knowledge work well together!


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Qenzoz
post Jul 24 2011, 03:46 AM
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Thanks everyone for all the answers! smile.gif


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Ivan Milenkovic
post Jul 24 2011, 11:39 AM
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No problem mate, glad we could help! smile.gif


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Bogdan Radovic
post Jul 24 2011, 04:49 PM
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I usually go for the approach that combines your 1. and 2.
I would first try to get familiar with the song and all the parts. Listening goes first.
Then I try to learn all the parts at OK level so I can jam along and move towards perfect.
If there is a technically challenging parts - I will isolate it and work on it until I get it down (against backing or a metronome). Then I would try to play it in a song context which is a whole new challenge smile.gif

For me it is most important to learn the whole piece as soon as possible (not regarding performance level - that comes with practice) as that way I can avoid learning the song half way through and never finishing it.


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