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Rhythm help: how to count/play 2 vs 3 and 4 vs 3 #1242730
08/03/09 03:08 PM
08/03/09 03:08 PM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 25
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farful Offline OP
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farful  Offline OP
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I'm horribly horrible with rhythm. How does one play eighth notes in left, and tripets in right hand? (two notes per three) Likewise, how do you go about playing four notes per three?

Back in college, we were taught "one cup of tea" / "pass the golden butter", but that seems to only work when I'm taking things slowly...

Anyone know of an online metronome that does 2v3 and 4v3? If not, are there metronomes you can buy that'll count three using one pitch, and two/four with another?

Last edited by farful; 08/03/09 03:10 PM.
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Re: Rhythm help: how to count/play 2 vs 3 and 4 vs 3 [Re: farful] #1242739
08/03/09 03:22 PM
08/03/09 03:22 PM
Joined: Nov 2007
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bluekeys Offline
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You can count the 3/2s in 6, like this (assumes R is 3 and L is 2):

1-Both
2-Neither
3-R
4-L
5-R
6-Neither

Set the metronome for a 6 beat measure and gradually increase speed. Soon you should be able to do it without the nome. I sometimes do this alternating hands for the 3 vs 2 just as a drill, so it doesn't feel so hard when I run into it on a song.

4/3 Could be done the same way but you might have to count to 12. I have not tried that yet.

(BTW - the hot cup of tea thing works nicely after you have practiced correct timing with the nome.)











Re: Rhythm help: how to count/play 2 vs 3 and 4 vs 3 [Re: bluekeys] #1242746
08/03/09 03:31 PM
08/03/09 03:31 PM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 25
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farful Offline OP
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farful  Offline OP
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Problem with 6 beat measure is that once you bring up the speed, you can't tell which beats you're meant to play on (with which hand!) and which you're not supposed to play on. The problem gets more pronounced in a 12 beat measure (3vs4) when you're supposed to play on half of them, and not play on half of them.

Hence, if there was a metronome that could count two sets of beats with different pitch/timbre...

Re: Rhythm help: how to count/play 2 vs 3 and 4 vs [Re: farful] #1242757
08/03/09 03:48 PM
08/03/09 03:48 PM
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,418
Dallas, TX
packa Offline
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packa  Offline
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Dallas, TX
Originally Posted by farful
Problem with 6 beat measure is that once you bring up the speed, you can't tell which beats you're meant to play on (with which hand!) and which you're not supposed to play on. The problem gets more pronounced in a 12 beat measure (3vs4) when you're supposed to play on half of them, and not play on half of them.

Hence, if there was a metronome that could count two sets of beats with different pitch/timbre...


I seem to remember a thread in the recent past where someone posted a link to a software metronome with polyrhythm capability. You might search for that thread, although in my opinion these kinds of rhythm issues aren't really candidates for metronome solutions. IMHO, the metronome is good for tempo but for rhythm there is no substitute for good old-fashioned counting.

The "6-count" for 2-against-3 is fine, but you certainly don't continue to count to six as you bring it up to speed. Once you develop the feel for the rhythm you don't need to count anymore (or use a metronome). 2-against-3 and 3-against-4 are common enough that they can quickly become second nature if you work through them carefully in the beginning.

In other words, if you still need to count, it's not time to bring it up to speed.


Paul Buchanan
Estonia L168 #1718
Re: Rhythm help: how to count/play 2 vs 3 and 4 vs [Re: packa] #1242770
08/03/09 04:01 PM
08/03/09 04:01 PM
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 2,786
Ann Arbor, MI
jazzyprof Offline
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Ann Arbor, MI
You'll find the info on the polyrhythmic metronome here:
Polyrhythmic metronome


"Playing the piano is my greatest joy...period."......JP
Re: Rhythm help: how to count/play 2 vs 3 and 4 vs [Re: jazzyprof] #1242779
08/03/09 04:14 PM
08/03/09 04:14 PM
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farful Offline OP
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farful  Offline OP
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Originally Posted by jazzyprof
You'll find the info on the polyrhythmic metronome here:
Polyrhythmic metronome


Any Windows software? frown I'm too stupid to figure out how to use a Mac (not to mention I'd have to buy one first..)

Last edited by farful; 08/03/09 04:15 PM.
Re: Rhythm help: how to count/play 2 vs 3 and 4 vs [Re: farful] #1242864
08/03/09 06:45 PM
08/03/09 06:45 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 130
Connecticut
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waldstein11448998 Offline
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waldstein11448998  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 130
Connecticut
The Debussy First Arabesque has a lot of 2 vs. 3. I've been working on it for the past three months. At first it was driving me crazy and I was getting frustrated. But I just kept practicing it slowly, and now I'm pretty decent at it. I don't really have to count anymore, since I've practiced it so much, I can just feel the rhythm.

Last edited by waldstein11448998; 08/03/09 06:46 PM.

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