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#2646327 - 05/23/17 11:15 AM Counting Paul Desmond's "Take Five"  
Joined: Oct 2004
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tjkane Offline
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tjkane  Offline
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St. Louis, MO
I am trying to learn Take Five written in 5/4 time. Traditional counting to the sixteenth note (1 e & a 2 e & a ...) seems cumbersome on this rhythmically complex piece. Any thoughts on securing the rhythm at slow speed while learning?

Last edited by tjkane; 05/23/17 07:39 PM.
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#2646424 - 05/23/17 03:08 PM Re: Counting Dave Brubeck's "Take Five" [Re: tjkane]  
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Charles Cohen Offline
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Charles Cohen  Offline
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"Traditional counting" may be cumbersome, but it's a reasonable way to keep things straight. Lots of "5" rhythms can be broken down into 3+2 or 2+3. I don't know if "Take 5" is one of those. There are "5" rhythms that don't have any natural breakdowns -- _those_ are really hard!

. Charles
PX-350 / microKorg XL+ / Pianoteq / Lounge Lizard / Korg Wavedrum / EV ZXA1 speaker
#2646499 - 05/23/17 07:02 PM Re: Counting Dave Brubeck's "Take Five" [Re: tjkane]  
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BDB Offline
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It is 3 + 2 most of the time.

It might be easier to think of in 10: 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 +, where the notes are played on the numbers and pluses in bold.

Take Five is by Paul Desmond, by the way. Dave said he would park in red zones in San Francisco because they were marked SFPD, which he interpreted as Save For Paul Desmond!

Dave could toss off complex polyrhythms with no strain at all, which is something you should strive for. Play the rhythm until it flows, and then start to count slower, one per bar, or even one per phrase. Then add in the other hand in a different rhythm, until you can do them independently.

Semipro Tech
#2646516 - 05/23/17 08:01 PM Re: Counting Dave Brubeck's "Take Five" [Re: tjkane]  
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RonDrotos Offline
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Take Five is a little tricky to count in the conventional way. Even though the 5 beats are grouped into 3+2, the rhythmic piano vamp has such a strong emphasis on the "and" of beat 1 that I've always just hummed that piano rhythm to myself to count the tune.

So rather than "1-2-3-4-5," it becomes "1-AND-a-3,4-5, 1-AND-a-3,4-5." At least that's how I found it easiest to count while becoming comfortable playing the tune. Good luck!

Ron Drotos
#2646531 - 05/23/17 08:50 PM Re: Counting Paul Desmond's "Take Five" [Re: tjkane]  
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PianogrlNW Offline
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How about trying to count it 1 2 1 2 3. That may help you get the syncopation. In the first section there is a rest on the first "2", but the second "2" is the note you emphasize. Once you get the syncopation you won't have to count as the rhythmic patterns are similar throughout the piece.

#2646595 - 05/24/17 02:15 AM Re: Counting Paul Desmond's "Take Five" [Re: tjkane]  
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Nahum Offline
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Nahum  Offline
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Originally Posted by tjkane
I am trying to learn Take Five written in 5/4 time. ?
What exactly are your difficulties :in basic rhythm (groove), in rhythm of melody , in hands coordination or in improvisation? It has already been said repeatedly that counting one and, two - and, three - and, four - and isn't verbalized rhythmic language, unlike the Indian konnakol and jazz scat. Mixing them, I got the following:

For total pronunciation of quarters in the bar 5/4 Ta ki tu Ta ki
For the main piano riff 3+2 (6+4) Tudaakadat bip bap
For B part of melody Taduu Kadut dadnbadn

Last edited by Nahum; 05/24/17 02:20 AM.
#2646809 - 05/24/17 07:59 PM Re: Counting Paul Desmond's "Take Five" [Re: tjkane]  
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TomLC Offline
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I used to play this all of the time in a jazz trio. I was the drummer then. It is counted as" 1-2-3-1-2. 1-2-3-1-2. I played it as a swing, sort of like: 1-2.&3-1-2. The bass drum plays on both 1:s.

Kawai K200 ATX2

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