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Did I post the first topic in this forum?

Posted By: gutshot

Did I post the first topic in this forum? - 12/21/04 02:58 PM

Just wondering?

I think this forum is a good idea.
Posted By: markb

Re: Did I post the first topic in this forum? - 12/21/04 03:43 PM

And did I post the first reply? smile

Of course, this means yet another forum to check! wink
Posted By: calvin

Re: Did I post the first topic in this forum? - 12/21/04 04:11 PM

you sure did , i am so happy to see this forum maybe it can be a place to get away from all the classical stuff
Posted By: mound

Re: Did I post the first topic in this forum? - 12/21/04 04:52 PM

so anybody working on Beethoven's Sonata No. 27?


just kidding!
Posted By: markb

Re: Did I post the first topic in this forum? - 12/21/04 05:09 PM

Originally posted by mound:
so anybody working on Beethoven's Sonata No. 27?


just kidding!
Posted By: mound

Re: Did I post the first topic in this forum? - 12/21/04 07:15 PM


Anybody playing in rock bands? I was doing that until just recently.. pretty straight forward verse-chorus-verse-guitar solo-verse-out type stuff with some "jamming".. hippie band type stuff. was pretty fun, but I had to move on..
Posted By: markb

Re: Did I post the first topic in this forum? - 12/21/04 07:24 PM

Actually, this is kind of the stuff I'd like to do initially. It's kind of hard to find some instruction on how to do it, though. I bought the Berklee Practice Method for keyboard, which addresses each instrument's role in the band. However, it seemed geared toward a more advanced level. Any beginner resources for what a keyboardist should be doing in a band situation? Should I be playing left hand chords, both hand chords, right hand chords with left hand bass line? If so, what is the bass line? That kind of stuff....
Posted By: Alanjazz.

Re: Did I post the first topic in this forum? - 12/22/04 07:37 AM

The other day I saw a TV recording dated 1998 of the Montreal Jazz Festival featuring someone called John Pizzorelli playing guitar and singing 'The Beatles' He is a brilliant Jazz style guitarist and more to our point was accompanied by a very exciting pianist who is well worth seeing. In the UK we have a TV station called SKY they have a channel called Performance this features both classics and Jazz and much between. Why not try and see if the Montreal Jazz Festival have a recording outlet or could advise you.

I like Mound's quotation. May I give a few words to those that wish to play in a group and wonder how to start. Perhaps 'markb' is asking that question.

There is not too much to say in words to express the way to start. I play by ear and therefore it is what I hear that inspires me. The hard part is the finger-technique and so I just concentrate on practice. The melody and chords come naturally, for if they are not melodic I know immediately. Most pianists develop their own style and quite intensely too. They always have. And that is where you need to concentrate in my own opinion. It will be difficult to find books that show you how. And I think it is best to develop your own style. That is where the real pleasure comes from. A bit like writing your own music perhaps.

More chat on these lines please!

Happy Christmas to all pianists.

Posted By: mound

Re: Did I post the first topic in this forum? - 12/22/04 11:34 AM

When playing in a rock band setting, here are 10 "starter rules" that might help:

1. You are likely part of the rhythm section. Remember that. Don't get in the way of the guitar players, but complement them and give them a "bed" to play on.

2. If there is a bass player, you don't need to hit the bass note.

2a. If there is no bass player, then you likely will need to play that role as well. Time to start working on LH bass lines!

3. Inversions are your friends! Use them extensively in your right hand. When you've got 16 measures of one chord to play through, you can change things up by inverting your triads up and down the keyboard and what you're playing will still make sense harmonically.

4. It is ok to only play with one hand at times. You're not a "pianist" in this setting, you are a keyboardist.

5. Don't play the same notes simultaneously with your RH and your LH.

6. Get an expression pedal and learn to use it (vs. putting your LH on the volume slider on your keyboard) (this of course assumes you're playing a digital keyboard)

7. You will, more often than not, be forced to play by ear. A rock song will probably have a chord progression, a structure like verse/chorus/verse/chorus/bridge/solo/verse/out sort of thing. You won't have sheet music, so it's up to you to learn where all the chords are, at least the basic triads, and learn to invert them.

8. Learn the melodies and lead lines that the guitars are playing even though you might not end up playing them. You may never use them, but if you know them, you can interact with the guitar players on a higher level, solo off each other type of thing.

9. Do yourself a favor and learn as much theory as you can.. Yes, this is the "non classical" forum, but the more you know about harmony, the bigger your "palette" of ideas will be for knowing what kinds of things to play over and under a band full of guitars to really add interesting colors without getting in the way.

10. "Less is More"

I'm sure there are plenty other tips as well. Anybody else?

It also depends on if you are playing piano sounds or organ/rhodes/clavinet etc.. your style will differ.. For example, think about Ray Manzerik (sp?) from The Doors - there was no bass player, he was playing bass lines with his LH and melodic stuff on his RH that complemented the guitar, or even led the sound. If you are playing a Hammond B3 type sound, you may be only using one hand, doing glissando type things and swells.

I like what Alan said, it's true, for rock music, you aren't going to learn much from any book.. Maybe some "licks" but you want to avoid "licks" - you end up injecting them into music just 'cause you know them rather than because they have musical merit. You have to rely on your ears, and the best way to learn, is to get yourself in a band and start playing.

Posted By: BigHeart Luther

Re: Did I post the first topic in this forum? - 12/26/04 07:26 PM

mound's suggestions are very good and will be of great help if you follow them, along with working hard at being a good musician as well.

Unfortunately, in some ways, I am incapable of taking his advice in the areas of staying out of the bass player's territory and the guitar player's area of glory. I can assure you this will cause problems. In my experience, however, when the bassist and guitarists are good musicians, there's no problem- just musical adjustments to create a harmonious sound. Playing (LH) in harmony and synch with the bass player in order to serve the needs of the drummer is the objective in my way of playing. The drummer is the real key in agroup, in that no band can be better than their drummer no matter how good everybody else may be.

Playing by ear is absolutely crucial in playing with bands and also if you are a band with guitarists and bass players, learn to read their fingers so even if you've never played or heard a song before you won't be lost. This has always helped me and had the added benefit of teaching me how to play guitar and bass as well.

What mound says about creating a bed is very true. I always think of the keyboardist's roll as making a sea for all the other players to float on and be able to move freely around without friction from below.

Theory is the great territory of a group oriented keyboardist because you can't do your job well without it and knowing theory opens up a world of inventive possibilities that lead directly to songwriting and composition. In truth the guitarist can write songs all day without knowing any theory because of the way chord shapes and scales don't change on a fretboard and learning a few songs gives you basic structures you can reapply endlessly with minor readjustments. But the piano keyboard makes you learn and depend on theory for every key change and to create accompaniments that open up big worlds of creativity.

Because I am a fairly busy player on piano I always have an organ handy for group gigs. While piano is great for solo gigs and horn oriented groups and playing as a singer's accompanist, guitarists LOVE the Hammond sound. It gives them a gigantic support and if you play it with style and consideration, no attack competition even when you are right in the same places pitch-wise. So if you are a 88 key piano player, get a real good Hammond clone or a good van and a hefty friend to haul a B3 for you. You'll not lack for jobs.

The last bit of advice has to do with the long run of playing in groups- learn to sing well in whatever style you like and can pull off.

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