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internet and practice

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  1. so, just now while trolling around the internet ( ...picking up from last night's search which left off on the tim miller page where i saw mention of a miller/goodrick book to be realeased this year) i ended up finding Varsan Ovsepian. a ridiculously good and tasteful pianist. here he shows some excercises ( ... apparently there is a book?)

    http://youtu.be/KNpCO-S8dRU

    last night i found this guy henrik andersen who has this stuff on konnakol:

    http://youtu.be/zBQ58KZEd3M

    ... yes , yes, i know there is the mclaughlin dvd; the youtube preview just shows a lot of fluff and promise of the magic and i kinda was craving the facts. this guy has 3 books ( yes,yes i saw the typos ( sic ) and corny metaphors but seemed tempted to get them as they were relatively cheap... however, he does reference some book that he says is the most comprehensive he has seen on the subject- which i'll be looking up t the libraray).

    and of course, the nelson veras several part youtube clips from last year's clinic at some conservatory in amsterdam where he covers metronome work that dealt with different meters; and the application of these meters over tunes; messing and mixing multiple meters in succession (at will ) within a pulse ; the bringing attention to messiaen and his modes of limited transposition and their really cool/deep lines and chords and dualities that offer up some refreshing tonality to draw on and work with torwards ; and tiny yet useful glipmses into how he views things or may approach things or practice ( ... don't let soft spoken self effacing way distract from some very wise words on things we might consider shifting in our perspectives ... or not do at all).

    where am i going with all this? well, it's tough. on the one hand, i am just following a craving- looking for music that speaks to something i want to be hearing - moreover, could propell me more in the direction of where i want to be going- then, i look for interviews or books or clinics or collaborators and follow more of the previously mentioned processes with them. with the fundamentals, i feel that my walls are pretty clearly where they are and my work feels more or less cut out for me . with jazz or bebop or guitar in this style it is also somewhat cut and dry for me ( as to that i suck and finding ways to look out why i am sucking ... usually, in conjuction with some of the same stuff as with fundamentals for me.).
    then , there is an area which feels ( surprisingly ) also to deal with some of the same makeup or at least perhaps similar methodologies could be applied to it. i feel like i search for the raw material and tools - sometimes a book or a system or something. this stuff feels raw and objective and it is more about how well i have it in my mind or under my fingers as far as how it's aesthetic drapings will hang but i am very drawn to these things. maybe because it can easily lend itself to being an escape from the basics ( in direct relation and application to tunes ); with the hope or mask of these things being used for my stuff - i.e. something i would call generative or creative or ... towards the art that i am making.
    in practice, the getting into my head or under my fingers ( in a way that isn't the rawest improvisational stuff for me - meaning i kinda get what this feels like , i kinda get the rhythmic hiccups or pulse, i am barely holding the idea- not that immediacy and freshness. a step or two later, where it does not feel like a flash in the pan - it feels memorable ( in the sense that it had a lingering impact that interests me i can maybe dig up elements of to try to look at and moreover sounds like the stuff i want to be makingish). again, it is a step that is slightly more objective or attempting to be where i can try to develop these things and bring the methodologies of how the basics or fundamentals get covered and how these things can be developed understood reconfigured , put through their paces and maybe become part of my or a language or modality.

    I'm curious how you all practice. what your walls are. the way you look at the internet ( for these purposes ).
    as an aside it would be really interesting if not only there were footage of " members playing" there was footage of "members practicing" i feel like it would be hard to get honest glimpses though.
    i would like to hear your thoughts on this stuff. thanks.

  2. ... oh and on the other hand, sometimes i will see my computer's history and feel kind of saddened.
    yes, i walk away with some amazing info sometimes . however there is a lot of time that i am wasting on the internet and maybe going to familiar youtube pathways or seeing the same info and it feels like a less direct and less brave way of identifying with or internalizing this stuff i want to connect with. like some weird lazy ineffective meditation. i just also want to include that there is something i also find somewhat dangerous or wasteful about how i go about it. especially , when i do want to get better at playing jazz and be furthering my own stuff.
    i feel sometimes super overwhelmed by things to work on and struggle with how to cover ground; divide the time for the different things; that some areas do not have the safety of a way to work on it; being honest with my expectations in exact relation to if i have spent ample time on fundamentals; being less emotional about how i feel crappy and just se it as crappy and look at what i am finding crappy and see if i can fix it without to much myth or drama, etc. and set aside the time for my own stuff.

  3. JorgeRubiales
    Member

    Well, I mostly use internet as a motivational tool (reading interviews, maybe finding one or two good exercises, a live performance here or there...). But I've found the less I spend on the computer, the more I spend with the guitar, so if I have a list of things I need to work on (everybody should have one of these, whether on paper or on your mind), then I start practicing and not wondering what to practice.

    But you know, I'm kind of a methodical/obsessive guy so my approach will most likely burn out many people... (anyone remembers the arpeggios thread? still working on them...lol)

  4. I will try to find the thread. I am totally curious, feel free to lay it all out, if you wish.

  5. Matt
    Member

    i have a white board in my 'shed' that i write a few technical things, improv ideas, transcription ideas (ie 'bill evans - nardis' which i often neglect) and then tunes i might want to learn or work on. really, as i am only a highschooler, i find myself being in the dark about a lot of practicing. yeah, i mean i could work on 5/8 meter for melodies and the stuff Nelson Veras talks about, or whatever else, but for me, i just find that i will address many of my short comings later in my life.

    as for walls, technique used to be one. i suck with a pick, so this week, i've decided to switch to using my fingers only, which feels more natural and relaxed.
    also, getting out ideas. often times, when i am a way from the instrument, i can create what i think of as great lines and ideas over progressions but translating that into the moment hasn't happened.

    [my two cents]

  6. fakejake
    Member

    When practicing, my most important tool (next to a metronome) is the egg-timer... it helps me to focus on a topic for a given amount of time and not start noodling around (noodling is cool, but has its own place, after practice..)
    But I really hate to practice with my computer on next to me. Feels like bad 'radiation' or something....

    Magical rainbow ponies
  7. jazzacast55
    Member

    I have the same deal as fakejake, my metronome has a built in timer, I set it for a half hour (the timer goes up to 1 hour) and just focus on a tunes melody or chords or anything but I just play just that for that half hour nothing else! I learned the head to Wayne Shorters Infant Eyes last night by ear off of speak no evil, just looped it in transcribe and played it over and over for the half hour. Sometimes I'll do a half hour on the melody of a tune then half hour on the chords. If I'm doing technique stuff for a half hour I'll focus on it and then have a break for 10mins or so, looking online sometimes or watch a youtube video just to give my hands a rest.

  8. Wow, great responses. Thanks to all who have replied thus far for your thoughts.


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