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> Is Ear Training Important?
Sensible Jones
post Dec 12 2014, 04:05 PM
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Well, we all know that it is, but to what degree can you train your ears to hear perfect pitch and then recreate exactly what you just heard?
Watch this video HERE and prepare to put a cushion on the floor first so your jaw doesn't break as it hits it!!!
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Cosmin Lupu
post Dec 12 2014, 05:47 PM
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Sweet Lord! ohmy.gif

Imagine that - she never needs tabs biggrin.gif


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Bogdan Radovic
post Dec 12 2014, 10:03 PM
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Hehehe I've seen this video today and was amazed.

I think ear training comes with territory. The better we get on the instrument (=the more time we spend playing), the more our ear develops but ear training specifically helps speed up the process. It seems natural that developed musician can play melodies "by ear" and being able to translate what he hears or imagines onto the instrument. The girl in the video can obviously play really really well.

On the other hand, I don't think ear training alone is a requirement for everyone. It depends in which dimension we want to master the instrument. How far do we want to take it? IMO - enjoying the instrument is number 1 priority. One shouldn't feel inferior if he can't really figure out effectively songs or solos he hears but can learn chord songs or figure out songs using tabs. I'll bite the bullet and even say: ear training and music theory are NOT necessary. They of course help like many other things you can do to improve on the instrument but you can still do EVERYTHING (gigging, composing, playing with bands etc) without digging into those topics, if you feel like taking such path.


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Cosmin Lupu
post Dec 13 2014, 08:55 AM
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QUOTE (Bogdan Radovic @ Dec 12 2014, 09:03 PM) *
One shouldn't feel inferior if he can't really figure out effectively songs or solos he hears but can learn chord songs or figure out songs using tabs. I'll bite the bullet and even say: ear training and music theory are NOT necessary. They of course help like many other things you can do to improve on the instrument but you can still do EVERYTHING (gigging, composing, playing with bands etc) without digging into those topics, if you feel like taking such path.


One shouldn't feel inferior, but he should understand that knowing theory and training his ear, means the HUGE difference between understanding what he is doing and why and just learning to reproduce something - of course, it all depends on where we want to get. But wanting to become natural with the instrument and being able to improvise cannot happen without practicing and training one's ear - the method? Regardless, something works for some, other things work for others, but the idea here is that one shouldn't become frustrated because he is not advancing, if he stubbornly refuses to learn and apply theory or train his ear, especially because of our nature that keeps making us compare ourselves to others all the time wink.gif

Those who are able to take their own path and maybe not study theory and STILL become great, are pretty rare and they have an incredible mindset as well smile.gif My two cents biggrin.gif

This post has been edited by Cosmin Lupu: Dec 13 2014, 08:56 AM


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Sensible Jones
post Dec 13 2014, 03:23 PM
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Very good points from both of you!
I agree that your ear becomes more developed as your experience grows. Agreed that you don't necessarily have to learn Theory or train your ear specifically but as Cos says it's of benefit in the long term to at least get the basics.
smile.gif


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Mertay
post Dec 13 2014, 05:16 PM
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Actually, for someone studying piano in a decent college this isn't really hard to do. But yes it takes years of practice and must add piano has a huge advantage to it compared to other instruments.

If one is very motivated, I suggest him/her to memorize intervals. Like, instead of finding the interval by tone (if perfect 5th, counting from C to G) memorize it and don't even think of what tonality you're in. Its just like memorizing a powerchord, the moment you hear it you know its a 5th interval wink.gif

Best and most fun is though taking a solo from an album you like most and slowly writing it down on tab instead of googling. This really helped me when I was young and preparing for music education.


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klasaine
post Dec 13 2014, 05:23 PM
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She's very good but what she demonstrates is not that uncommon, especially if she has perfect pitch.
Any professional classical piano player would be able to do that and most pro session players too. Those melodies and harmonies are not really that complicated.

Also that video is edited so who knows if she had a 2nd and 3rd try at them.

*Having said all that, training your pitch is one of the most important things you can do as a musician.
Music is an auditory art. You 'need' to be able to hear and translate effectively.

This post has been edited by klasaine: Dec 13 2014, 05:26 PM


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PosterBoy
post Dec 14 2014, 06:47 AM
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This is a great program for ear training
http://www.miles.be/software/34-functional-ear-trainer-v2


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Cosmin Lupu
post Dec 14 2014, 12:41 PM
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I think that each and every one of us should train his ears daily - learn to recognize what you hear and you will have a FAR easier time figuring out anything on your instrument and on a lot of other instruments as well. Imagine that the only barrier between a person that has a very well trained sense of hearing and playing any instrument is theoretically the practicing on that particular instrument. Otherwise, you will know what you want to hear from that instrument and with a bit of time given, you will also obtain it. For instance, I can play Jingle Bells on a bagpipe as soon as I will learn how to phisically play that bagpipe smile.gif


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Arpeggio
post Dec 14 2014, 08:17 PM
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QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Dec 14 2014, 12:41 PM) *
I think that each and every one of us should train his ears daily - learn to recognize what you hear and you will have a FAR easier time figuring out anything on your instrument and on a lot of other instruments as well. Imagine that the only barrier between a person that has a very well trained sense of hearing and playing any instrument is theoretically the practicing on that particular instrument. Otherwise, you will know what you want to hear from that instrument and with a bit of time given, you will also obtain it. For instance, I can play Jingle Bells on a bagpipe as soon as I will learn how to phisically play that bagpipe smile.gif


Very true ear training is all encompassing. The same ear-training regime benefits me for electric guitar and walking bass Jazz. I dot a lot of ear training in which I sing because it would make sense for the part of the brain responsible for perception of sound to be more closely linked to the part responsible for ones voice, rather than the guitar playing fingers, therefore the voice bridging the gap between your perception of sound and the fingers.

Watching your video at 1:57 resonated with me and other good sources that said similar, such as how I once noticed Guthry Govan say you should be able to sing what you play.

~

Children tend to have perfect pitch more than adults and find it easier to learn because of the following…

Quote: “By the time an infant is two or three years old, the number of synapses is approximately 15,000 per neuron. This amount is about twice that of the average adult brain."

The important part:

Quote: "The connections that are not reinforced by sensory stimulation eventually weaken, and the connections that are reinforced become stronger. Eventually, efficient pathways of neural connections are carved out.”

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/...neuroplasticity

If you have a child you are getting to do music, now is the time to integrate ear training. It's why adults don’t have perfect pitch if they haven’t learnt as a child and why it's hard for them to learn it as adults. I’ve been trying and it’s like trying to sense something you aren’t designed to, as though squinting your eyes to trying to see infra-red. Very hard!



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Phil66
post Dec 14 2014, 10:16 PM
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QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Dec 14 2014, 12:41 PM) *
I think that each and every one of us should train his ears daily - learn to recognize what you hear and you will have a FAR easier time figuring out anything on your instrument and on a lot of other instruments as well. Imagine that the only barrier between a person that has a very well trained sense of hearing and playing any instrument is theoretically the practicing on that particular instrument. Otherwise, you will know what you want to hear from that instrument and with a bit of time given, you will also obtain it. For instance, I can play Jingle Bells on a bagpipe as soon as I will learn how to phisically play that bagpipe smile.gif


Cosmin,

In order to play bagpipes you have to eat haggis daily. It's part of the initiation laugh.gif

Just as an offshoot on this thread, what do you all make of this? Do you think that if we were taught at school to recognise notes, as we are taught to recognise colours, we would all be able to have perfect pitch? Unless of cause we are colour blind or tone deaf.

Phil

This post has been edited by Phil66: Dec 15 2014, 10:45 AM


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jstcrsn
post Dec 15 2014, 02:08 AM
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QUOTE (Mertay @ Dec 13 2014, 05:16 PM) *
Actually, for someone studying piano in a decent college this isn't really hard to do. But yes it takes years of practice and must add piano has a huge advantage to it compared to other instruments.

If one is very motivated, I suggest him/her to memorize intervals. Like, instead of finding the interval by tone (if perfect 5th, counting from C to G) memorize it and don't even think of what tonality you're in. Its just like memorizing a powerchord, the moment you hear it you know its a 5th interval wink.gif

Best and most fun is though taking a solo from an album you like most and slowly writing it down on tab instead of googling. This really helped me when I was young and preparing for music education.

I was taught to find songs you like with the first 2 notes (words) in different intervals , with each song having a different one than the next. If you have a song for every interval ,that you can hum at any time, it will give you a good head start in implementing what your hear in your head.
This is just what Cosmin has been preaching for a while , trust him, it works.
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Cosmin Lupu
post Dec 15 2014, 04:30 PM
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QUOTE (jstcrsn @ Dec 15 2014, 01:08 AM) *
I was taught to find songs you like with the first 2 notes (words) in different intervals , with each song having a different one than the next. If you have a song for every interval ,that you can hum at any time, it will give you a good head start in implementing what your hear in your head.
This is just what Cosmin has been preaching for a while , trust him, it works.


Thank you for your kind words, mate smile.gif I'd be glad to know it helped you too - can you share the experience? I am really curious smile.gif

QUOTE (Phil66 @ Dec 14 2014, 09:16 PM) *
Cosmin,

In order to play bagpipes you have to eat haggis daily. It's part of the initiation laugh.gif

Just as an offshoot on this thread, what do you all make of this? Do you think that if we were taught at school to recognise notes, as we are taught to recognise colours, we would all be able to have perfect pitch? Unless of cause we are colour blind or tone deaf.

Phil


I am certain of it - here, check this video out in which Victor Wooten talks about the idea:





Very good points here - I think that Victor's video relates to what you said in pretty darn accurate manner smile.gif

QUOTE (Arpeggio @ Dec 14 2014, 07:17 PM) *
Very true ear training is all encompassing. The same ear-training regime benefits me for electric guitar and walking bass Jazz. I dot a lot of ear training in which I sing because it would make sense for the part of the brain responsible for perception of sound to be more closely linked to the part responsible for ones voice, rather than the guitar playing fingers, therefore the voice bridging the gap between your perception of sound and the fingers.

Watching your video at 1:57 resonated with me and other good sources that said similar, such as how I once noticed Guthry Govan say you should be able to sing what you play.

~

Children tend to have perfect pitch more than adults and find it easier to learn because of the following…

Quote: “By the time an infant is two or three years old, the number of synapses is approximately 15,000 per neuron. This amount is about twice that of the average adult brain."

The important part:

Quote: "The connections that are not reinforced by sensory stimulation eventually weaken, and the connections that are reinforced become stronger. Eventually, efficient pathways of neural connections are carved out.”

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/...neuroplasticity

If you have a child you are getting to do music, now is the time to integrate ear training. It's why adults don’t have perfect pitch if they haven’t learnt as a child and why it's hard for them to learn it as adults. I’ve been trying and it’s like trying to sense something you aren’t designed to, as though squinting your eyes to trying to see infra-red. Very hard!



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jstcrsn
post Dec 15 2014, 07:21 PM
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QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Dec 15 2014, 04:30 PM) *
Thank you for your kind words, mate smile.gif I'd be glad to know it helped you too - can you share the experience? I am really curious smile.gif

well, I actually was taught this before I was apart of this sight, but I will expound.
Lets take" Amazing grace" as an example
The first 2 notes( in the key of c) are c(root) and F (natural forth) the third note being A (natural 6th).now if you can sing those first 3 notes correctly, and then focus and loop the first 2 notes , then the first 3 notes (loop them) now try to take the 2nd note out so you are just looping ( going back and forth between)the c and the a until you have trained your to automatically sing the interval of the forth and sixth. now you just need to find a song that has every interval that you can hum at any given moment and viola.

I have read enough of your thread that you are trying to get your students on this interval path and I for 1 know how it will benefit them.
of course it is easy with an insturment if you want to just practice singing root-forth-root- forth-root- third-root-third and so on

This post has been edited by jstcrsn: Dec 15 2014, 07:22 PM
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klasaine
post Dec 15 2014, 08:00 PM
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There's a ton of interval recognition by song resources out there ...

http://www.people.vcu.edu/~bhammel/theory/..._recognize.html
http://www.eartrainingmastery.com/en/blog-...als-recognition
http://www.vicfirth.com/education/percussi...1/Intervals.pdf

This is a great way to train yourself.

*You can also do it with tempo.
Any 'march' (or disco song) is usually 120 bpm. Half of that is 60 bpm. It's easy to approximate anything else.
Also, if your watch has a second hand or can 'click' seconds you've got 60 bpm ... double that for 120.


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Mertay
post Dec 15 2014, 08:02 PM
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QUOTE (jstcrsn @ Dec 15 2014, 01:08 AM) *
I was taught to find songs you like with the first 2 notes (words) in different intervals , with each song having a different one than the next. If you have a song for every interval ,that you can hum at any time, it will give you a good head start in implementing what your hear in your head.
This is just what Cosmin has been preaching for a while , trust him, it works.


Yeah but thats a bit of a starting point to be honest, I used that to only memorize intervals that were harder for me to memorize (some were fast, some slower to memorize).

Real deal is when applying it to solfeggio or dictation (not sure of english, piano plays as one writes the notes?), real time. Depending on level, it can get very intense.

If I remember right, they teach this to kids by starting with 5th, then 3rds so this also helps identifying chords later on.

For grownups its probably harder to not think tonally but intervallic, I guess after the very begining slow and atonal melodies could be better. Musical expectation is too developed for grownups so the teacher should try and turn around it.


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Cosmin Lupu
post Dec 16 2014, 12:04 PM
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QUOTE (jstcrsn @ Dec 15 2014, 06:21 PM) *
well, I actually was taught this before I was apart of this sight, but I will expound.
Lets take" Amazing grace" as an example
The first 2 notes( in the key of c) are c(root) and F (natural forth) the third note being A (natural 6th).now if you can sing those first 3 notes correctly, and then focus and loop the first 2 notes , then the first 3 notes (loop them) now try to take the 2nd note out so you are just looping ( going back and forth between)the c and the a until you have trained your to automatically sing the interval of the forth and sixth. now you just need to find a song that has every interval that you can hum at any given moment and viola.

I have read enough of your thread that you are trying to get your students on this interval path and I for 1 know how it will benefit them.
of course it is easy with an insturment if you want to just practice singing root-forth-root- forth-root- third-root-third and so on


hehe smile.gif It's all about learning the distances between notes, not only in a static context, but also in a dynamic one, such as the melodic line of a song - The idea is that people are usually losing it pretty fast when it comes to doing stuff that might seem a little bit too abstract at first.

They want to shred and play fast right away - but hey, I wanted that too when I was a kid biggrin.gif I had no clue that in order to become a proficient player you have to train your ear smile.gif Well, the basics can be learned from David Lucas Burge's method - I used this one and it proved itself pretty damn good: The Relative Pitch Training Super Course and Ken also mentioned three other methods which are most likely useful!

If everyone would dedicated 15-20 minutes to ear training every day - well, needless to say, a lot of changes would occur biggrin.gif


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Arpeggio
post Dec 17 2014, 02:42 PM
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QUOTE (Mertay @ Dec 15 2014, 08:02 PM) *
Yeah but thats a bit of a starting point to be honest, I used that to only memorize intervals that were harder for me to memorize (some were fast, some slower to memorize).


QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Dec 16 2014, 12:04 PM) *
hehe smile.gif It's all about learning the distances between notes, not only in a static context, but also in a dynamic one, such as the melodic line of a song - The idea is that people are usually losing it pretty fast when it comes to doing stuff that might seem a little bit too abstract at first.


Yes only learning the interval distances between notes and stopping there, is a bit like learning the alphabet, but stopping short of learning words then phrases! Thanks for the Video, Victor obviously had a good start as a child, it looks like he is explaining the same thing from his own perspective.


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Cosmin Lupu
post Dec 18 2014, 10:24 AM
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Victor lived surrounded by music and it was taught to him as a language - of course, it's only natural that he speaks it so well and he is free to express himself using it.

Now, a good exercise, would be to pick up songs and reproduce the vocal lines by using the guitar and then see the intervals in the melodies, associate the positions on the neck with the sounds and the names of those notes.

You will not only train your ears but also learn yourfretboard in an organic way! biggrin.gif Trust me, it works!


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klasaine
post Dec 18 2014, 05:46 PM
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It's really important to note - super important if not the most important in fact to realize or understand that these folks like V. Wooten or the pianist in the OP vid or any professional musician was and is surrounded by music from an early age. Listening to and hearing music is like breathing for them.

My 5 year old has heard music - hears music - all day, every day (when he's at home) since his first ride home from the hospital. He can sing in tune and in time. He sings little songs to himself all day long. Now he's 'requesting' music from me and my wife. His taste isn't much different than probably most 5 year old's but he actively engages in wanting to hear it. He may not become a musician but he'll at least have a deep appreciation and understanding of music.

You don't have to do it starting at birth or even as a little kid but if you're at all serious about at least getting better and being moderately proficient as a hobbyist - ? ... you absolutely need to listen to music as the sole activity at least an hour a day (at the very least - it should actually be a lot more).

This post has been edited by klasaine: Dec 18 2014, 06:50 PM


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