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#3098457 03/27/21 04:42 AM
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I've recently started (again...) on my old goal of ear training, and this time i would like to keep it going for a long time.

By now I'm focussing on maj7 chords singing them on the piano on their different inversions.

My goal is to do the same thing with all the basic 7th chords until i can recognize them on the spot.

In the past I've done lots of singing and earing drills so i have some base, and I'm familiar with intervals, wich helps a lot.

Do you think is it realistic to set 1 year of time to get to my goal?

Also, do you have any tip on how to train it?

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Good choice, maj7 is my favourite chord. It's beautiful, isn't it?

If you're already good at identifying intervals, I believe a year is perfectly realistic.

Singing and playing chords is most effective, I'd probably add some computer-based training. There are programs now that help to learn to identify chords and chords progressions.

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Major 7 is the cool sounding one and is complete on it's own (doesn't feel like it needs to resolve). Add 9 (so, if LH is on C and RH is playing maj7 reading up from C, move your thumb to D. Cooler still and a bit fuller, but basically the same sound.

Singing is always good with ear training. I'd only suggest trying to get a flavour of the chords within the context of real music, vs. chords on there own. How chords interact with each other (the chord changes) is what you really will want to get a feel for.

Originally Posted by Ubu
...
Do you think is it realistic to set 1 year of time to get to my goal?

No, I don't like it. I'm 40 years in now and still working on it. It will never be complete.

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Thankyou, i agree with both of you, maj7 is beautiful, and subtle. I love its 7th note when singing it from root position, that 7th seems to come from outer space like some kind of ufo or entity.

I will follow your advice on training software and adding 9s, and hearing them on musical context.

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I would encourage you to learn about tendency tones. Every note has a tendency to resolve to "do" or another note of the chromatic scale. Once you can hear the distinct tendency of each note to resolve you are on your way to developing a strong sense of relative pitch.

In my lesson, Tendency Tones (https://www.jazzpianoonline.com/courses/tendency-tones-ear-training [paid subscription required]) I show you the tendencies of all 12 chromatic pitches.

Here's a start for you:

Play a I-IV-V progression on the piano, then play a B. You will hear a very strong tendency for the B to resolve to C. Play the progression again and then play an F. You will hear a strong tendency of the F to resolve to E.

Every note has a tendency to resolve in this way. (Some are stronger than others. The two above are the strongest).

Please write to me or check out my lesson if you need more information.


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Thankyou, i didn't know about the tendency tones in such a complete approach.

Now i have the problem that so much singing these past weeks has injured my throat, so i must remain silent for a few days. I ve been practicing the singing without the singing, everything in my mind, it's difficult.

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Ubu,

My own experience with ear training and with teaching others ear training is that by far the fastest method is by simply doing your own transcriptions. Pick an artist who is not too difficult to transcribe and start doing it for an hour a day. After one year you will be where you want to be, I promise.

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Ubu,
What's the goal? What's the end game?
Do you want to sit in with a combo?
Do you want to play what you hear?


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Originally Posted by Wes Lachot
Ubu,

My own experience with ear training and with teaching others ear training is that by far the fastest method is by simply doing your own transcriptions. Pick an artist who is not too difficult to transcribe and start doing it for an hour a day. After one year you will be where you want to be, I promise.

Wes

You mean writting the melody and then try to put the chords for it? This afternoon I've tried with this tune, it is just Gmaj and D7, but it's catchy.


Last edited by Ubu; 03/29/21 03:52 PM.
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Originally Posted by Farmerjones
Ubu,
What's the goal? What's the end game?
Do you want to sit in with a combo?
Do you want to play what you hear?

Yes i would like to be able to sit together with a sax player for example, and follow with the piano his improvisation

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Pick a recording of a pianist and saxophonist, something not too fast, and start listening closely to what the pianist is playing, slowing it down if you need to. Listen enough times until you can play it yourself, even if it's just one bar on the first day. Then write it down. Do this every day for a year.

Wes

P.S. The above is not a Yoko Ono poem, I promise.


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Originally Posted by Ubu
Originally Posted by Farmerjones
Ubu,
What's the goal? What's the end game?
Do you want to sit in with a combo?
Do you want to play what you hear?

Yes i would like to be able to sit together with a sax player for example, and follow with the piano his improvisation

In other words, quickly find the key, and quickly find the chord progression?

Was/is a similar aspiration for me. Remember how long it takes to get well spoken in your mother tongue. Also remember we didn't spend a year on verbs, or adjectives.


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If you sing a Cmaj7 what pitch do you sing out of the CEGB?

Originally Posted by Wes Lachot
Ubu,

My own experience with ear training and with teaching others ear training is that by far the fastest method is by simply doing your own transcriptions. Pick an artist who is not too difficult to transcribe and start doing it for an hour a day. After one year you will be where you want to be, I promise.

Wes

This sounds interesting and fun. Does it mean if I were to listen to Taylor Swift Champagne Problems I would try to transcribe the vocal melody into musical notation and the same for the harmony? This sounds very challenging.

Does this mean you (and others out there) can listen to Champagne Problems and know it's a I, V, VI, IV in C?

Can you also know the signer is signing CEGG...

I'm very interested in this as it sounds fascinating.

Last edited by Sebs; 04/17/21 03:49 PM.
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Originally Posted by Sebs
If you sing a Cmaj7 what pitch do you sing out of the CEGB?

Originally Posted by Wes Lachot
Ubu,

My own experience with ear training and with teaching others ear training is that by far the fastest method is by simply doing your own transcriptions. Pick an artist who is not too difficult to transcribe and start doing it for an hour a day. After one year you will be where you want to be, I promise.

Wes

This sounds interesting and fun. Does it mean if I were to listen to Taylor Swift Champagne Problems I would try to transcribe the vocal melody into musical notation and the same for the harmony? This sounds very challenging.

Does this mean you (and others out there) can listen to Champagne Problems and know it's a I, V, VI, IV in C?

Can you also know the signer is signing CEGG...

I'm very interested in this as it sounds fascinating.

Your mileage may vary, but this is how I do it: I have an instrument in my hand. (piano, guitar, violin)
I listen to the end of 4 or 8 bars for the resolve. Typically, this is the key.
Then I listen for the first chord change and assume it's either to the IV, or V chord. The more one does this, it becomes less of a guess. Then I listen for the second change and try to ascertain a progression at or near this point. I helps to have heard the song/tune prior. This also gets better the more you do it.
As far as fleshing out a melody, one really needs an idiomatic familiarity for your instrument. Simply stated, in some ways you're acting like a parrot. A parrot that can play an instrument idiomatically.

Last edited by Farmerjones; 04/17/21 10:28 PM.

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There are many ways. The above (I didn't read them all). There's species counterpoint - debatable as to the practical value.

But I think attacking it from different angles might be fun. BELOW.

Maybe my best tip is..."Here Comes The Bride" has the melodic interval of UP A 4TH - an ascending Perfect 4th. Internalize that interval. Practice singing a random note - followed by the note UP A 4th. It's a pillar of Western harmony.

My ideas:

There's what I call "tone matching" - have a computer and mouse next to your piano keyboard. Play a song you wanna figure out on YouTube. It could be some old TV show theme. Or an old Motown song. A Sinatra or Nat King Cole recording if you like. Play that song on YouTube - and try to play along on the piano. If it's too difficult to play along...just play a few seconds on YT at a time. At the point you STOP the cursor- figure out what that chord is. Listen to the bass line to help figure it out. I think it's not unlike doing a crossword puzzle. But you proceed bit by bit. Eventually you will "hear" more and more of what's going on. And you end of filling in some of the blanks. And try to match the chord voicings. I'm thinking about popular music - not Charles Mingus or Bill Evans. Old Perry Como recordings are very nice.
------------
I used to keep a pitch pipe in my car. I now have a pitch pipe app on my phone. I have, in past years while driving in my car, decided on a song. It might be "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes" , "As Time Goes By". Or even a Beatles song - "She Loves You" or "It Won't Be Long" - these are some songs I've done this with. And what THIS is - is to play the tonic note (Eb for Smoke Gets In Your Eyes...Eb for As Time Goes By and so on) on the pitch pipe, start singing the song - but NOT in tempo. Sing it and a random - when you choose to - sing an arpeggiation of the current chord note by note like sing the Fm7 to Bb13 - note by note in Smoke Gets In Your Eyes as an example. Try to hear/sing the supporting bass note. Not in tempo . If you get off, you can reorient yourself with the pitch pipe. Keep starting over and over if necessary.
---------------
I have a couple of Jamey Aebersold ear training CD's. I should rip them to my phone for use in the car. I haven't listened to them in years.
---------------
There is the transcribing that is usually prescribed.

That's all I've thought of.

Last edited by indigo_dave; 04/18/21 06:28 PM.
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Tone matching gives me something to ponder. I can't remember learning a tune/song that I didn't have already in my head. My head being mushy as it is, never spins a tune out in anything but G, D, C, or A. It must be like they say, when all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Sure, I can jam with my violin in any key under the sun. Piano, while it's theoretically there, it's not automatic as it needs to be.


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I don’t know how anyone can pick pitches, chords, or chord progressions in a song. All I can pick out is “hey this sounds great or I don’t like it” hahah slight exaggeration and I know my hearing is good but being able to pick up those pitches and progressions, intervals, etc blows my mind. Maybe cause I’ve never tried it and it’s time to exercise my ears.

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Originally Posted by Sebs
I don’t know how anyone can pick pitches, chords, or chord progressions in a song. All I can pick out is “hey this sounds great or I don’t like it” hahah slight exaggeration and I know my hearing is good but being able to pick up those pitches and progressions, intervals, etc blows my mind. Maybe cause I’ve never tried it and it’s time to exercise my ears.
I sympathize. Piano in general, offers too many options for any one thing, like transitioning from a G chord, to a D chord, and back. The sheet tells one the what to do. Solves the problem. One needs to adopt a stock chord voicing, for when one doesn't have another guide. You'll drive yourself crazy trying to get something exact immediately. I start learning any tune/song by ear as an approximation. Truthfully, it usually stays that way. This is art.


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Originally Posted by Sebs
I don’t know how anyone can pick pitches, chords, or chord progressions in a song. All I can pick out is “hey this sounds great or I don’t like it” hahah slight exaggeration and I know my hearing is good but being able to pick up those pitches and progressions, intervals, etc blows my mind. Maybe cause I’ve never tried it and it’s time to exercise my ears.

With songs based on 12 bar blues it is very easy. You have just 3 chords, i, iv, and v, going always in the same order, and the change from one to another is very noticeable.

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Have you explored ‘sight singing’?
The process to learn sight singing is good ear training.

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