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Practicing time feel

(11 posts)
  1. Sandemose
    Member

    Ive been working on 4:3 in different ways for a while now. Havent got it down by far, but playing seems so much funnier when really learning new stuff. This part for me is so negleted, so every progress with time feel gives new perpectives on how to use harmony as well.

    At the time Im working on just playing 4 notes over 3 beats (mostly arpeggios with four notes or pentatonic "shapes") as well as 8:3. My goal is to be able to play 8 over 3 with only click on "2" (one TWO three, that is) without rushing. I cant play 4:3 yet, but Im closing in. It would be cool to be able to alternate between 8 over 3 and 16s notes tripplets in groups of four. "Time" will tell I guess.

    What rhythmic devices are you guys currently working with?

    Best, Sandemose

  2. arewolfe
    Member

    I've really just been working on my swing 8th notes for the past 18 months. I find it very difficult and unnatural at certain tempos to keep long lines in time. Also I've been working on 5/4. I can play in 7 with no problems... almost as natural as 4. But 5 is giving me a tough time.

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  3. fakejake
    Member

    Great thread!
    Practicing and achieving a solid yet flexible and musical time feel is one of the hardest things for me to do...

    Up to now, what I did was:
    1. Practicing bebop heads, getting them to swing as hard as possible in all different kind of tempos
    2. Learning solos note for note and playing them along to the records
    3. Using ideas from the 'Melodic Rhythms' book, trying to incorporate them into my playing one by one.

    I'd love to hear some other approaches on that!

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  4. jorgemg1984
    Member

    Worked a lot on bebop articulations on the last two years - attack on the upbeat and slur on the downbeat. Swing comes a lot from syncopation but also a lot from articulation. These articulations are really hard on guitar but worth it in the end :)

  5. oddthink
    Member

    I've been working this on 3 over 5/4 thing! (It works out to - every ten 16th-note triplets... [5x6=30 and 30/3=10]). But I want to just feel it, of course.... :) Great thread....

  6. silverwater
    Member

    Chords in modal tunes, 3 over 4, for 8 bars. This was an Elvin Jones McCoy Tyner trademark. It's all over albums like A Love Supreme and the Real McCoy the original recording of Passion Dance. The 3/4 usually manifests itself as two dotted quarter notes from McCoy's left hand.

    It's one of those things I'd heard a million times, but for some reason it didn't dawn that they were playing 3 over 4 until someone pointed it out to me...it just sounds like some good music.

    Hint: Over 8 bars of 4/4, you can play 10 bars of 3/4 and have 2 extra beats at the end. I've been counting the bars of 3/4 as opposed to counting 1! (2) (3) 4! (1) (2) 3! (4) (1) 2! (3) (4) etc...maybe some people would prefer to do it like that but I just find it tedious.

    PS: Just listened to Passion Dance again...I think McCoy is doing this for 95% of the tune.

  7. Sandemose
    Member

    I always thought that Kurts piano playing sounded a bit like McCoys playing. Silverwater: thanks for the info and tips! I have realized that I have problem playing 3/4, esp. in fast tempos, I actually tend to lose the "1" at times which is frustrating. Counting the pulse while playing different groupings and polyrhythms should help my sense of periods and time keeping I guess.

    Best, Sandemose

  8. Matt
    Member

    one thing that surprises me still is how difficult it is to simply keep good time when the quarter note equals 60, or something pretty slow. warne marsch's slow improvisation is something that for me is pretty difficult to maintain good time and feel.

    also, ben monder's exercise of playing scales at 5bpm, or any ridiculously slow tempo, is absolutely one of the hardest things to do.

    for me, i'm focused on trying to be one with the pulse, just playing great, perfect time. it may be another twenty years, but that's my goal.

  9. Barry Mando
    Member

    A while back I was trying to come up with different patterns that equal 16 and my fav by far was 2 5's and a six as 16ths. I was doing it linearly as well as intervallically. A ton of fun!

  10. silverwater
    Member

    @Sandemouse: Lately I've been playing with people that like super fast tempos...tempos where if you're up there tapping your foot on every down beat you're going to look an epileptic (no offense to epileptics of course). So here's what I've been doing.

    With up tempos, if you need to tap your foot to keep your place, the only way to go is:

    - Tap on the 1 in 3/4,

    - and tap on the 1 and 3 in 4/4.

    Maybe you already do this, if so then well maybe someone else can benefit from that tidbit.
    The less you're tapping your foot at a breakneck tempo the more relaxed your body will be, and the more relaxed you'll be at playing at that tempo.

    In the case of an up 4/4, I actually count and read in 2/2, treating eight notes like 16 notes.

    Playing eight notes at 250 bpm!! OMG panic time! (Shit my right hand is tensing up, damn it there's no swing!) etc...

    Playing 16th notes at 125 bpm: A much more relaxing proposal.

    And with 3/4, If you tap your foot on the one only you shouldn't have a problem getting lost. It's almost like you're playing in 12/8 at that point too.

  11. jorgemg1984
    Member

    Yep. half-time feel is essential for fast tunes! Even on medium tunes is helpful as long as you keep your 8th notes swinging.


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