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#1153832 - 02/21/07 11:50 AM Ear training  
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 770
Dan M Offline
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Dan M  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 770
California
Hi,
I'm working on my ear training again after doing it in college many years ago. I'm using some commercial software which is very good, right now it's doing intervals, and I'm getting stuck!

The problem is that, for example with major and minor thirds, I used to rely on determining which is which based on hearing the major or minor quality. The problem is that depends on being in a key. If the two intervals are unrelated, then I make a lot of mistakes.

The software is presently testing me on identifying which interval is larger (major one obviously). Any ear training tips or tricks?


The piano is my drug of choice.
Why are you reading this? Go play the piano! Why am I writing this? ARGGG!
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#1153833 - 02/21/07 12:47 PM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Jul 2006
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mahlzeit Offline
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mahlzeit  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,916
Netherlands
I don't really think ear training this way is particularly fun, but if you're determined to do it, you can match intervals with beginnings of songs you know. Like a 4th is Amazing Grace ("Ah-may"), an octave is Somewhere Over The Rainbow ("Some-where"), and so on. Of course, this assumes you're listening to melodic intervals, not harmonic.


No idea what chords you are playing? Reverse Chord Finder Pro will tell you!
#1153834 - 02/21/07 01:48 PM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 308
Harmosis Offline
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Harmosis  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 308
California
Hi Dan M,
Sing the intervals (in solfeggio). Sit at the keyboard to correct yourself. If you can sing an interval unaccompanied, than you should be able to know it when you hear it. It helps to sing the major and minor intervals consecutively (i.e. sing a major 3rd, then a minor 3rd right after) to really ingrain the differences in your head. Also, break out your Bach Chorales and sing through them in solfeggio them as well.

#1153835 - 02/21/07 02:07 PM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Sep 2006
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rada Offline
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rada  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,124
pagosa springs,co
Hi Dan,

I think using songs you are familiar with is an excellent way to learn the sounds of intervals...here are some examples:
M3...ascending....sounds like "Michael Row the Boat Ashore"....
M3 descending...sounds like Beethoven's 5th...or a doorbell
m3...ascending...Sounds like the theme from "Romeo and Juliet' [ A Time for Us]
m3 descending...beginning of "You're a Grand Old Flag...

good luck and have fun,
rada
www.pianopassions.com

#1153836 - 02/21/07 02:20 PM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Feb 2005
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Steve Chandler Offline
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Steve Chandler  Offline
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Posts: 3,243
Urbandale, Iowa
Dan,

I believe interval training is useful to composers for transcribing melodies, but I've found being able to identify harmonies more of a problemmatic. That may be because I don't have issues with writing down the melodies I hear in my head, but harmony, especially chromatic and extended harmony can be a far greater challenge to notate accurately. This may be what you were alluding to when you mentioned that sometimes the key made it difficult to hear the major or minor quality. I believe composers should have internalized tonal theory to the point that you simply know that a chord on the 3rd degree of the scale will be minor as will its seventh, but this just comes with practice.

My only advice to you would be to forget ear training software and start writing music. I found working with a computer in either a sequencer program or notation program provided immediate feedback that was far more useful to training my ear than drilling intervals.

#1153837 - 02/26/07 09:46 PM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 9
fifteen_fingers Offline
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fifteen_fingers  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2006
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Originally Posted by Steve Chandler
My only advice to you would be to forget ear training software and start writing music. I found working with a computer in either a sequencer program or notation program provided immediate feedback that was far more useful to training my ear than drilling intervals.


This could create a dependency on the immediate gratification of composing with software or with an instrument. If you train your ear, you can compose anywhere (as long as you have staff paper and a pencil).

#1153838 - 02/27/07 02:34 PM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Feb 2005
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Steve Chandler Offline
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Steve Chandler  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 3,243
Urbandale, Iowa
Quote
This could create a dependency on the immediate gratification of composing with software or with an instrument. If you train your ear, you can compose anywhere (as long as you have staff paper and a pencil). [/QB]
It could, but it could also allow him to imagine music that's more sophisticated. Lots of composers have found using a keyboard helpful in their efforts (Stravinsky being one). I personally find melodic stuff with simple harmonies easy to notate without an instrument or computer, but the more challenging the music you hear the more you'd like to be sure you got it right. If you think you could transcribe the opening of Le Sacre after hearing it a few times more power to you. I rather have a piano handy.

#1153839 - 03/05/07 12:52 PM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 4
bagarjet Offline
Junior Member
bagarjet  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 4
Argentina
I think yo need to practice interval in all possible ways. some are these:
1-Write a simple melody with whites (2) and as you play the note sing over it the same melody in a specific interval (e.g. mayor third). In that way you'll learn to identify the simultaneous third in all contexts. Note that a major intervals sound major in some contexts but it sounds minor or different in other contexts.
2- Sing an interval and continue singing the same interval over the last note you sung. Eg do mib solb la do (minor thirds)
3- Play or sing melodies (invented) with two or three intervals only. This will help you recognize the intervals in different contexts.
Etc, If you need more help please ask I could think of many other exercises my teacher used to teach me.
bye

#1153840 - 06/10/07 04:25 AM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 278
jwjazz Offline
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jwjazz  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 278
New York
There's a great ear-training book I used in college: Modus Novus, Studies in reading atonal melodies, by Lars Edlund. It takes the intervals out of the context of a diatonic system, and forces you to hear the intervals purely as they are. It has a chapter for each interval, or major/minor pair. It's really hard though, however the author has an easier book called Modus Vetus. I never studied it, but the context is melodies in major and minor scales.
Either book emphasizes sight-singing.
But you also use it for dictation if you can get someone to play the melodies and chord structures for you.


working on:
Goldberg Variations
#1153841 - 07/07/07 05:04 PM Re: Ear training  
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Cultor Offline
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Cultor  Offline
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BsAs
Quote
Originally posted by Harmosis:
Hi Dan M,
If you can sing an interval unaccompanied, then you should be able to know it when you hear it.
That's it.
And search for a human teacher.
Human beings are awesome.

#1153842 - 07/09/07 12:01 AM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 770
Dan M Offline
500 Post Club Member
Dan M  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 770
California
Thanks folks. I've hooked up with a retired composer (by accident) and am now happily taking lessons smile


The piano is my drug of choice.
Why are you reading this? Go play the piano! Why am I writing this? ARGGG!
#1153843 - 07/09/07 12:39 PM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 342
Cultor Offline
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Cultor  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 342
BsAs
Quote
Originally posted by Dan M:
Thanks folks. I've hooked up with a retired composer (by accident) and am now happily taking lessons smile
What accident? A b or a #?
(Ugh. That was a stupid joke).

#1153844 - 07/09/07 05:27 PM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 777
193866 Offline
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193866  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 777
Manassas,Va
Great info and loving this...At 68 years old I always want to learn more at the piano. Does anyone know a good rhythm dictation instruction book, etc? Very easy on me to begin? I love to Big Band Improv and could use this...I have been looking for years for a good one. Thank you in advance for the info... Sandy B


Sandra M. Boletchek 08/02/06
#1153845 - 07/09/07 05:31 PM Re: Ear training  
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 777
193866 Offline
500 Post Club Member
193866  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 777
Manassas,Va
Question do any of you have songs come to you all at once? Even classical compositions ? This really excites me to converse with gifted composers. What a gem you are. Sandy B and a 68 year old pianist who loves music more than ever.


Sandra M. Boletchek 08/02/06

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