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How to avoid noodling
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On3ironaut5



Joined: 30 Apr 2007
Posts: 16

PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2007 11:12 pm    Post subject: How to avoid noodling Reply with quote

Hello everyone. Its my first post here so i figured i would introduce myself and pose a question at the same time, rather then post twice.

I have been playing guitar for a few years, primarily in the "jam-band" idiom (if there is such a thing) and was first turned on to Steve's playing through BET jazz and more recently, the 10k lakes festival. I have read most of Steve's posts on other forums, primarily The Gear Page, but decided that the best place to ask a question would be in a forum designed specifically to discuss his playing.

(This may have been asked before, i tried searching and didn't see anything regarding the matter)

How do you avoid noodling? I have a solid understanding of theory, but many times, i feel as though my playing isn't really "saying anything". I have tried singing my lines, worked through videos that discuss phrasing, tension and resolution ideas such as Coltrane changes etc. and it still seems like i play lines on "auto pilot" not really thinking them through or hearing them in my head first. I read a Steve post on this forum regarding "big dumb ideas" such as only playing upper register notes or repeating notes, but im not sure how to apply this. Also, i never sit down to write licks, my goal is to be able to express myself through improvisation, but as of now it seems im running through patterns and scalular fragments. Some of the players i respect most are highly criticized for rambling (namely Jerry) and i agree there is some validity to the argument. The only player i know of who can take extended "jam" solos and still stay concise is Steve.

Any input is greatly appreciated!
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kimock



Joined: 20 Aug 2004
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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 3:44 am    Post subject: Re: How to avoid noodling Reply with quote

On3ironaut5 wrote:


How do you avoid noodling?

Any input is greatly appreciated!



That's a good question. .

I guess you need to define "noodling" to figure out how to avoid it.

I'm shootin' from the hip here, but how about. . .

Noodling=Wiggling your fingers without paying very much attention to the sound you're making?

So, that would make it a mild form of "Wanking" which would just be an even more aggressive form of noodling, right?

So, anything that slows down the "wiggling" or forces you to listen, or both would probably work.

Two rather extreme but effective strategies I employ for this purpose are:

1. Put the heaviest set of strings on your guitar that you can possibly find. 13 or 14 high E at least. My regular strat gauges are bigger that the available baritone guitar set FWIW.
Raise the action as high as it will go, and yes that will seriously f#ck with your guitars intonation.
Your guitar is now completely unplayable and totaly out of tune with itself.

2. PLAY IN TUNE.

It's a little extreme, but that's the path I took - in a nutshell. . .hmm?

The bow is too heavy to lift

The string too tight to draw

The target impossibly far off

invisible. . .

Takes those clever little fingers right out of the equation, doesn't it?

That would be my answer for "Stop Noodling Now", I would attempt to physically prevent it from occuring in the first place.
There are bound to be other strategies with varying degrees of effectiveness that are less of a total clean break from the past that we can get into later. Just wanted to see what you thought of my answer.

Most folks would just turn away. . .

peace sk






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zoooombiex



Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 37

PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have this issue a lot too, though it's slowly been improving lately. I partly just came to accept that I think more in accents and harmonies than in single-note leads. (Think McLaughlin's non-lead playing on Bitches Brew, or some of Weir's playing). That's always been my comfort zone, but there's something deeply satisfying when things do click that keeps me trying to improve single-note stuff. I haven't tried Steve's physical approach ... maybe I should Smile

I remember reading an article about this and the writer's suggestion was to draw out the issue by contrast (using the personas of Miles and Coletrane). Start by playing as few notes as possible, as though each note cost you $ to play. Get a feel for how slowing down affects your approach to playing, giving yourself time to anticipate each note. Then eventually switch over to Coletrane mode - now you're getting paid for each note. Play as much and as fast as you can without getting sloppy. Switch back and forth, and hopefully somewhere in between you start to get in synch with the instrument. YMMV

Another thing I've noticed that sometimes helps is playing the right kind of music for my mood. Sounds stupid, but sometimes I'll put on some music and play along and nothing is clicking, then I'll switch to something very different and things fall in place.

A somewhat more painful approach is to force yourself to keep playing whatever song or key you are struggling with -- over and over and over -- and after a while things sometimes start to click ... though your neighbors may not appreciate it Smile

Anyway, as an interested party - any more ideas are appreciated!
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On3ironaut5



Joined: 30 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

First and foremost, I would like to say thanks to Steve for his alacrity in responding. Its cool enough having a virtuoso answer questions on a personal basis, the fact that it happened so quickly is mind blowing.

On to the topic at hand:

What I gathered from Steve's post (correct me if I’m wrong) is essentially, making it more difficult to play each note will cause me to truly think about the notes I am choosing and make each one count for more. I spoke with a sax player friend who suggested I simply play less; this seems like a similar solution. However, maybe I wasn’t as clear as I could have been in my original post. It’s not that I don’t know which notes are “right”, it’s that I’m not thinking about which notes I should hit. If we are jamming over a C9, I think C Lydian dominant or any other logical options. However, this line of thinking causes my playing to sound contrived, automatic, noodley and often forces me to repeat the same licks.

It’s difficult to describe what’s going on, but I guess what I’m asking is: Do the best players improvise what they hear in their head, or do they simply take the tones they know will work over certain chords and play previously thought out or spontaneously thought out licks? My playing utilizes the latter, which I believe is inhibiting my ability to say what I need to say. Rather then creating a melody and expanding upon it with tension and resolution, I always revert back to playing shapes.

Do I need to burn the sounds of the notes into my head so that i can sing the lines I want to play? Would working on intervals aid in making my playing sound less scalular? Or should i forget about notes all together and just work on phrasing?



On a relatively unrelated note, I don't know if y'all have seen this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y6EsFeBdA7A but it will change the way you look at the guitar. Thats what i'm talking about when i say "make every note contribute to the song and have some relevance." I Don't know if you remember playing that Steve, but for instance, are you thinking about playing a particular set of notes? Were those licks thought out beforehand? Were you just playing what you felt at that moment?
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kimock



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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 6:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

On3ironaut5 wrote:


If we are jamming over a C9, I think C Lydian dominant or any other logical options. However, this line of thinking causes my playing to sound contrived, automatic, noodley and often forces me to repeat the same licks.






We're gonna have to tackle this one a bit at a time. . .cool?

What you're feeling there is a result of the static nature of the conventional diatonic chord/scale relationships.

You pick a tonic, in this case C.
You build a chord on it, in this case Dominant.
You fill the chord tones in using the nearest available 7 note scale.

Off to the races!

Because you've got a scale, the tendency is going to be to explore the permutations of that "scale fingering" to find some sounds, to "see where it goes", right?

Well, the permutations of whatever scale you're using aren't the point, and
they obviously can't take you away from the "sound" of that C/S relationship, no matter how furiously you mix them up. . .

What's missing here in the conceptualization is the idea of tonal center as a literal center. Every intervallic relationship expressed by the C/S theory idea "C9=C Lydian Dom." has an exact inverse relationship from the tonic to another family of sounds that are it's opposite polarity.

Make sense?

That's gonna start to move around.

In conventional terms, (5-limit diatonic C/S speak)

Our basic chord, C doesn't sound like it's going anywhere until it's relationship as center is revealed by "going all the way around it", by invoking the inverse of it's intervals.

So, if you're going from C up to G,

you have to go down from C to F

up to E,

down to A flat, etc.

So, for me, C major anything means F minor something to get the whole picture. No reason to not start a phrase in C with an F- arp. resolving to a chord tone of C.

No reason to start a phrase in a C9 vamp with any chord tone at all for that matter, those tones are already being played.

Why not: ascending F B E flat B flat, descending G flat F E flat C?
etc.

Random permutations and mixing of scales is not the winningest strategy for finding your way in the music.
Choose a tonic, and very carefully and very simply mirror your first interval above with the exact same interval below.

If you're in C, and you go up to E, that means you've brought A flat into play.
If you descend from the tonic C A G, for a tonic major sound, it's inverse from the tonic up, C E flat F, is subdominant.

Up from the tonic, down from the fifth is "major/minor".

C D E= major

G F E flat =minor

Extend these ideas as far as you can, strictly at first to get a feel for the harmonic justification of the tones outside the C/S box.

Does that make sense to you?
Mess with it and see what you get, we can work on it some more later.
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zoooombiex



Joined: 03 Feb 2006
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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 3:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Once again, I feel odd trying to add anything to Steve's post (which is again amazingly fast), but since I empathize with your comments, here are some related thoughts.

As an illustration of Steve's point (and please correct me if I'm wrong), a lot of jamband-type music ends up being a vamp in a particular key/scale, and there's nothing wrong with that, but it sounds like you feel frustrated/uninspired by running through variations of the same set of notes. Contrast that with something like "Pharaoh's Dance" on Bitches Brew -- it's got a stable tonic, but not a fixed scale throughout. That was a big eye (ear) opener for me. Playing along in a fixed scale quickly starts to sound confined and out of place, and forces you to expand your playing.

Another thing Steve has mentioned in the past that I've found helpful is some non-scale finger exercises. Basically, you just run through every iteration of your four left fingers:

p(inky), r(ing), m(iddle), i(ndex)
p-r-i-m
p-m-r-i
p-m-i-r
p-i-r-m
p-i-m-r
r-p-m-i
r-p-i-m
r-m-p-i
r-m-i-p
r-i-p-m
r-i-m-p
m-p-r-i
m-p-i-r
m-r-p-i
m-r-i-p
m-i-p-r
m-i-r-p
i-p-r-m
i-p-m-r
i-r-p-m
i-r-m-p
i-m-p-r
i-m-r-p

It doesn't really matter where on the neck. Just take each iteration and do it on each string. in addition to being a good physical exercise, I think it helps to acclimate your ear to new, non-scale oriented phrases. It's one of those things that sounds odd when you start, but then your ear picks up on little chromatic things that sound interesting and can come in handy to change things up.

One final thought. I'm not sure from your post if you are experiencing this in a band context or by yourself (or both). In a band context, I've noticed that other musicians may be reinforcing a particular scale, which can be good, but can also make it harder to get away from it. For example, if you have a rhythm guitarist who is strumming away on a straight up major or minor chord, I feel a lot of gravity towards that particular scale and find it harder to play outside it. That might just be my issue. But if, on the other hand, people avoid resting on the major/minor third it suddenly seems to open up a lot of possibilities. It leads to a musical ambiguity, and gets you toward the situation I think Steve was talking about, where you have a stable tonic, but not a fixed scale. Again, this may be a personal issue for me, but I thought I'd throw it out there.
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lalaland



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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 6:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does noodling = wiggling? Yes, and no.
Speed = noodling? Yes, and no.
*insert activity here* = noodling? Yes and no. Mabye

Whats noodling? Aimlessly playing? Soloing over Fire on the Mountain? (Bingo!)

Any of this stuff can and is used for effect. If your technique is getting in the way of actually playing on either end (too little OR too much), something needs to change.

To me, the worst kind of noodling is often not even the lead players fault. Inability of the band to react etc. Awful. I've experienced it, we all have, it sucks. We know.

So, how to avoid this, correct? First off, listen to Miles Davis. Use space, call and response. Miles is king of call and response. That first note he plays on Bitches' Brew, y'all know what I'm talking about. God damn. Have confidence in what you're playing. Actually, scratch that, your playing needs to have confidence in YOU. You have to lead the instrument, not the other way around. Body posture. Don't laugh, I'm serious. When you MEAN it, however you show it (standing or sitting perfectly still, doing the splits, playing behind your head, whatever), people can see it. Not only that, you HEAR it. No sh*t.

Turn down. If the band is playing so loud that there's nothing defining happening, just turn down. Body language here. Show 'em you mean it. Not just in the way you stand, but in the notes you play. When they calm down a bit to hear you, turn down more. When they match that, turn down even more. When your volume control is OFF, then you know that you've got 'em. Give yourself room on the high end of the volume spectrum. Don't be in a position where you have to be slamming the strings to be heard. Make sure you have your touch still. (Unless slamming is what you're going for).

Turn up. Sometimes it just has to happen. Played a gig on Friday (sat in with band for a show). Guitar (me), LOUD/distorted bass, LOUD/busy keyboards, out-of-tune singer, another keyboard player (my good friend/band mate), way-too-quiet saxophone and of course a drummer who has no clue what song is about to be played next. Only way to get any kind of cohesion out of this band was to play guitar hero. Thats it, and thats what happened. Context is everything.

Kill someone with ONE note.
Jump in on 2.
Play harmonically jumping lines. Noodling almost always = linear, linear, linear.

String your guitar heavy. Play with a clean tone. Dime your amp and do everything with your right hand. Play in stereo. Turn the reverb up. Use delay. Anything to 'wet' the notes. I'm running stereo Fender -> Crate (with HEAVY reverb). The attack comes from the Fender, decay from the Crate. When its working, you ain't searching for those notes, the tone is so interesting.

Like Steve said, cripple yourself. Make yourself in so much pain when you play that you HAVE to be 100% sure that its worth it. If you play piano, I don't know, put powdered glass on the keys. Remove the guitar from the fretboard. Remove muscle memory. Don't remove the cliche`s, they're there for a reason. Instead of playing free, play from your gut, play some blues (intonation). Switch it, stop your rock *cough* ideas/themes etc. and play from the clouds. You know what I mean, the lighter than air stuff. Have a band where peoples ears are open. Also, practice improvising over a drone. For an hour, just sit there. You'll get bored, trust me. Excite yourself. Next step, do it with your girlfriend there. If you can keep her quiet, you know you've succeded. When you play stuff that you KNOW, not in your hands, but in your soul, there's no need for anyone to say anything. It'll happen. Its cool.

Don't forget to skip scale tones. Jump! Do it!

Peace
Jamie

Edit: In all my noodling, I forgot to say the most important thing. Breathe! You can do cool stuff breathing at odd times (So much depends upon the red wheel/barrow) but I think that natural vocal breathing spots end up working WAY better. (That'd be the analogous of synthetic scales = synthetic phrasing).


Last edited by lalaland on Wed May 02, 2007 8:23 pm; edited 1 time in total
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57tele



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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

lalaland wrote:

Whats noodling? Aimlessly playing? Soloing over Fire on the Mountain? (Bingo!)


Speaking of FOTM:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gL12coyWgXY
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lalaland



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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 8:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seen that video, cool stuff. I like the other ones, 'Freddie Freeloader'.
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On3ironaut5



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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok guys, there is a ton of great information here so I’m going to tackle each part separately.

In regards to Steve’s suggestion: The “Anti-noodle” occurs when you produce movement in your lines and make improvisation over a static chord seem as if it is going somewhere. Rather than “Random permutations and mixing of scales” which is exactly what I’m doing, I can instead utilize intervallic relationships.

The first example makes sense: C -> G is a fifth so in order to mirror this relationship we play F-> C, a fifth back to the tonic. Same goes for C -> E (third) and E -> Ab (third).

“So, for me, C major anything means F minor something to get the whole picture. No reason to not start a phrase in C with an F- arp. resolving to a chord tone of C.”
This part threw me off. Why doesn’t anything C major equate to anything D or A minor? An F major arp over C I would equate with the Lydian sound, not necessarily minor.

”Why not: ascending F B E flat B flat, descending G flat F E flat C?”
etc.
This confused me as well. F-> B is a b5 and B -> Eb is a 3rd. It doesn’t seem to “mirror”. These notes in relation to the tonic don’t make much sense either: E flat over a C9? The Bb makes sense… dom 7th, but what about the Gb (my only guess is the sharp 4 in C because I did mention Lydian dominant before.)

I must be missing something, I’m just conditioned to think in terms of chord scale relationships because most books/movies etc seem to say “Cmaj… ok here are your options… playing scale X will yield such and such altered tones and playing scale Y will sound very hip… etc.”

The other thing I wanted to ask was; are you computing all of these inverse interval relationships in your head as you improvise? Do you have licks thought out? Or is it a combination of both?

In response to zoom, im definitely going to run through those fingering permutations. As for fixed scales, I don’t think I have that problem. Whereas say over Amin7 I’m not just running up and down in G with an emphasis on certain dorian tones. Scofields DVD sort of opened me up past that point and I now know my options concerning which scales will produce which altered sounds or which notes will produce the sound I’m looking for. I’m not stuck looking for notes, I’m stuck looking for ideas. Its funny you guys mention miles, I’ve been on a huge Miles trip as of late.

Lala: The call and response tip is a good idea. I'm going to try and utilize this in my playing as well as simply playing less.


“Play harmonically jumping lines. Noodling almost always = linear, linear, linear.”
Slowly realizing this. The problem arises in the heat of improvisation though, I don’t think about jumping around or if I do, sometimes fumble. Is this one of the things you need to develop during practice and just bust out during an improv? It’s hard to think of lines that jump around on the fly in the middle of a solo and incorporate them into other ideas.

I think the whole thing can be summed up: Some people think about sounds while they improv, others think about note names, and others think about shapes or patterns. I think I will be able to develop more interesting and less repetitive ideas by focusing less on patterns and more on the notes relationship to each other (intervals).
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Frankenstrat



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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 10:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

57tele wrote:
lalaland wrote:

Whats noodling? Aimlessly playing? Soloing over Fire on the Mountain? (Bingo!)


Speaking of FOTM:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gL12coyWgXY


That has got to be the least amount of people I have EVER seen at any Kimock performance. I know it was open mic night, but talk about sparsly attended. I do hope there were some people at a bar that isn't in the shot. Great playing as always from Steve.
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zoooombiex



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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 10:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

On3ironaut5 wrote:
I’m not stuck looking for notes, I’m stuck looking for ideas.


It sounds to me like this is more of a mental thing than a technique/theory issue. Basically, you just have 12 notes that repeat over and over. Apart from bending them out of whack, those are all your options. And it sounds like you know enough about theory to know what note is going to give you what sound. So it seems like you're really just struggling with deciding which note to play when.

I think of this as a disconnect between your mind and your hands. That's why I define noodling as playing with your hands - you go through various patterns, scales, and whatnot, but it's really your hands deciding what's being played rather than your mind. That's not to say each note is or should be a conscious pre-thought event. But when things click there seems to be a tunnel from that creative part of your mind directly to your hands, allowing your hands to immediately bring into being what your mind conjures up. If there is a disconnect, your hands aren't really tapping into that aspect of your mind ... hence you are just playing with your hands.

My thoughts about trying to build up that connection:

1. I know singing the lines you are playing doesn't necessarily work because I tried that too. You just end up singing what your hands are playing - still no connection.

2. A few people have suggested slowing down. Really stop playing - force yourself to imagine EXACTLY what you want to hear. Maybe it's one note, maybe a run, maybe a little chord. Picture/Hear it happening and then make it happen. Start slow, and don't let your hands take control (ie, your mind just pictures what your hands already want to do. that is backwards and is just letting your hands take charge again).

3. lalaland and I both suggested forcing yourself to play on the same drone over and over, so I'm guessing that's significant. Yes, it's painful for you and any listeners. But after a while it seems like your hands eventually get tired, or your mind gets sick of what the hands are doing and takes charge, and you start to feel the flow of creativity reverse.

4. In my case, this is partially caused by shyness. When I'm in the background i'm very relaxed and fall into a groove doing odd little chords and accents. I don't have the balls to step up and really take the lead, so when I try I often get very self-conscious and this obstructs any flow of creativity. Or, as soon as I make a mistake I get distracted and embarrased and get completely thrown off - all connections are canceled. But I've been forcing myself to just step up and it's been improving. I don't get to play out as much as I'd like but this has been a major helper.

5. Practice without a guitar. There's something physical about holding the guitar that makes the hands think they are in charge. Try singing an improvised melody sitting around without a guitar. And don't picture a fretboard in your head either - complete tonal freedom. It doesn't even have to always be a real note. That's one of my favorite things about Miles - sometimes you don't need a note, you just need a big HONK.

6. Pretend you're not playing guitar. Close your eyes and pretend you're playing a sax (or clav, or whatever other instruments you like). Imagine a phrase you'd expect a sax to hear (and picture a nice shiny sax in your hands), now play that line on the guitar. It's ok if you have to think for a minute about how to translate that sound onto the guitar -- that's exactly what you hope to be able to do spontaneously and immediately. For me it helps that I have only the very basic idea about how to play a sax -- that means my hands are just being quiet while my mind is thinking what to play. They're not trying to impose ideas about what physically makes sense to play on the guitar.

5. As a last resort, try another instrument. I think this all the time about myself -- that maybe there is another instrument that allows you to connect better. That's not saying anything about musicianship, just that people may not gel with an instrument but then pick up another and it clicks. Something about the different physical approaches to instruments will sometimes uncover a connection that lay dormant.


NOTE: I've heard a lot of musicians talk about drugs helping them get into this kind of zone. I'm actually very straightedge, so I'm not advocating anything. But I think it's worth noting that they tend to use similar language - a zone where your mind and body are in synch, and you're not consciously thinking about intervals or harmonies - you're hands just spontaneously realize what is in your mind.

This has actually been a constant question for me. Most of the musicians I really admire DID do some kind of drugs. (Once again, Miles is a prime example). And it always makes me wonder if they could have made that music without the drugs ... maybe they could have made better music? Maybe worse? I don't know. I do know I enjoy playing as I am, and don't feel the need to try anything. But the question remains....


Last edited by zoooombiex on Thu May 03, 2007 5:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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lalaland



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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 1:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Basically, you just have 12 notes that repeat over and over.

Sorry, but no. I've had this thought before too. There are only 12 notes, you can't play any one that will be THAT interesting...(blah, blah, blah). Sorry, but I don't buy that. Theres a whole world of harmony out there that we constantly just ignore. Whip out your steel and play a Just lydian scale over a drone. Hit that just major 3rd. Find the tri-tone, the one for you (good luck!). You will NEVER get bored of that sound. Ever. I was just trying to talk about 12 tone theory, but here we go. Its like the marble that is rolling along a bumpy road. There are small holes that it can sit it, but none of them fit very well, so it keeps rolling. Then suddenly it finds one that sits just right. The quest is over. Thats it, BINGO. That's what harmony sounds like. Thats what beatless sounds like. Its THAT big.


Quote:
4. In my case, this is partially caused by shyness. When I'm in the background i'm very relaxed and fall into a groove doing odd little chords and accents. I don't have the balls to step up and really take the lead, so when I try I often get very self-conscious and this obstructs any flow of creativity. Or, as soon as I make a mistake I get distracted and embarrased and get completely thrown off - all connections are canceled. But I've been forcing myself to just step up and it's been improving. I don't get to play out as much as I'd like but this has been a major helper.

Very cool. Sure can be hard. But seriously, as much as everyone may not want to admit it, every musician is looking for a leader. Or, more so, they follow a leader when one arrives. Body language. It works. Same with the volume element. Tremendous way to 'pull people in'. But you're right, you can't do it without having done your homework. Just play what you know. Its the stuff that you don't think about so much that'll hit people. But be able to put yourself in a place where that stuff is able to come out.

Glad we agree on Miles!

By the way, drugs are only an inspiriation. May have helped *me* to see where I wanted to go, but no more so than any other spiritual experience in my life. Even at my young age (17 Laughing ), I can see it; drugs are a road block.


Quote:
“So, for me, C major anything means F minor something to get the whole picture. No reason to not start a phrase in C with an F- arp. resolving to a chord tone of C.”
This part threw me off. Why doesn’t anything C major equate to anything D or A minor? An F major arp over C I would equate with the Lydian sound, not necessarily minor.

F- arp equals F minor arp, not F major. Don't quite know if I buy the mirror idea yet. We'll see. Also, E flat over C9 makes perfect sense. You use this tone, so does everyone on this board. G flat = yea sharp four. Still, in my opinion the four is just as cool as the sharp four.

I don't buy this idea of being in one tonic and thinking of a scale based on another. Might work on piano, but for me, on the guitar, the fingerings just through the resolution WAY off (using a G scale over Am7 for example). In my opinion, its best just to look at this stuff as intervals off the root.

What y'all say?

Peace,
Jamie

P.S. My girlfriend got me a looper pedal for our anniversary. Sweet!
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zoooombiex



Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 37

PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 1:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

lalaland wrote:
Quote:
Basically, you just have 12 notes that repeat over and over.

Sorry, but no. I've had this thought before too. There are only 12 notes, you can't play any one that will be THAT interesting...(blah, blah, blah). Sorry, but I don't buy that. Theres a whole world of harmony out there that we constantly just ignore. Whip out your steel and play a Just lydian scale over a drone. Hit that just major 3rd. Find the tri-tone, the one for you (good luck!). You will NEVER get bored of that sound. Ever. I was just trying to talk about 12 tone theory, but here we go. Its like the marble that is rolling along a bumpy road. There are small holes that it can sit it, but none of them fit very well, so it keeps rolling. Then suddenly it finds one that sits just right. The quest is over. Thats it, BINGO. That's what harmony sounds like. Thats what beatless sounds like. Its THAT big.


True - I didn't mean that in a literal sense that there are only 12 notes (there's worlds inbetween each fret, hence the bending comment). I was trying to oversimplify what does NOT appear to be this guy's problem. Basically, a guitar presents a variety of potential sounds, and this guy seems to have enough theory and experience to know what those potential sounds are. So his issue doesn't seem to be about how to make a certain sound when he wants to, it's about deciding which sound to make in the first instance.

I think my earlier suggestions went mostly to the former issue, so I tried to offer some for the latter. Hope they may help...


Last edited by zoooombiex on Thu May 03, 2007 5:19 pm; edited 1 time in total
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kimock



Joined: 20 Aug 2004
Posts: 441
Location: Lehigh Valley

PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 5:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

On3ironaut5 wrote:




“So, for me, C major anything means F minor something to get the whole picture. No reason to not start a phrase in C with an F- arp. resolving to a chord tone of C.”
This part threw me off. Why doesn’t anything C major equate to anything D or A minor? An F major arp over C I would equate with the Lydian sound, not necessarily minor.

”Why not: ascending F B E flat B flat, descending G flat F E flat C?”
etc.
This confused me as well. F-> B is a b5 and B -> Eb is a 3rd. It doesn’t seem to “mirror”. These notes in relation to the tonic don’t make much sense either: E flat over a C9? The Bb makes sense… dom 7th, but what about the Gb (my only guess is the sharp 4 in C because I did mention Lydian dominant before.)




The C/F- bit was a seperate example from the "why not start a phrase" bit, sorry for the confusion.

The example phrase, off the top of my head, was just one of a Brazillion possible "C9 vamp sounds" that have little or nothing to do with the
Chord tone or chord/scale approach.

The other question, about the relationship between C and F minor, C and A minor etc. is a circle of 5ths question.

Just trace those shapes, "connect the dots" of those chord tones on the circle of 5ths, and see what you get.

C to A minor is a diatonic symmetry (around D) with both chords serving as either tonic major or tonic minor to the rest of the C major scale pitches.

C to F minor is a chromatic symmetry (around C) either One major Four minor, or One minor Five major.

If C major is your basic "in" sound, F minor, as it's inverse, is your basic "out" sound. For the key of C.

C to A-, both sounds are "in".

Make sense?
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