Banjo Hangout Logo
Banjo Hangout Logo

Premier Sponsors

1049
Fiddle Lovers Online


Page: 1  2   Last Page (2) 

Jul 23, 2021 - 11:45:09 AM
9340 posts since 3/19/2009

This is just something that went through my empty head today.. I'm trying to learn a tune (doesn't matter which one, so I won't mention the name).. I found three recorded versions one of which was the tune creator playing on a field recording.. I found 4 transcriptions of that field recording.. One of the transcriptions was AABB bare bones, one was AA'BB'.. one showed double stops and drones through out.... the final one showed several instances of different note values compared to the others..I played all of the transcriptions and will finalize how I'm going to play the tune and Someone is going to say that I'm not playing it right (happens)..
Here is my point.. Do YOU say you learned a tune when you can just play along? or do you say you can play a tune when what you are doing Sounds like the tune? or do you listen intently and try to get every little nuance from a recording?
There is no wrong answer.. We each according to our skill level will probably answer differently..I just find it interesting when for instance people say they learned a tune from a Tommy Jarrell recording and they sound Nothing like Tommy... (I've done the same)...
When do you say you have learned a tune?

Jul 23, 2021 - 12:32:09 PM
like this

101 posts since 1/21/2017

I guess I feel like I've learned a tune when I feel good about the way I'm playing it. I've learned tunes before, note for note, and with all the correct bowing, and it just feels off. If I can change the bowing to fit what feels right to me, and it still sounds fairly authentic to what I'm aiming for, then I'll enjoy playing it. I can get through tunes that I've been playing for 20 years but If there's a part that I just sort of mush through uncleanly, I think I still consider it unfinished, and maybe I'll get around to learning it correctly someday. I always aim to get every nuance and cool variation, and then scale it back to what my skill level allows.

Edited by - coryobert on 07/23/2021 12:35:45

Jul 23, 2021 - 12:42:50 PM

9340 posts since 3/19/2009

quote:
Originally posted by coryobert

I guess I feel like I've learned a tune when I feel good about the way I'm playing it. I've learned tunes before, note for note, and with all the correct bowing, and it just feels off. If I can change the bowing to fit what feels right to me, and it still sounds fairly authentic to what I'm aiming for, then I'll enjoy playing it. I can get through tunes that I've been playing for 20 years but If there's a part that I just sort of mush through uncleanly, I think I still consider it unfinished, and maybe I'll get around to learning it correctly someday. I always aim to get every nuance and cool variation, and then scale it back to what my skill level allows.


Sounds like you are a Wise fiddler..!! I like your response.

Jul 23, 2021 - 12:49:12 PM

1974 posts since 8/27/2008
Online Now

I do a lot of reading. When I can read a tune well, meaning I don't need the sheet music much, then I consider it pretty much learned. But when I can play it by ear is when I'd say I've really "learned" it. Depends how complicated a tune it is, and how motivated I am to completely memorize it.

 

PS I'm not a great sight reader. It's my crutch for learning. Really a help for me to be able to read.

Edited by - Brian Wood on 07/23/2021 12:51:24

Jul 23, 2021 - 12:55:35 PM

9340 posts since 3/19/2009

quote:
Originally posted by Brian Wood

I do a lot of reading. When I can read a tune well, meaning I don't need the sheet music much, then I consider it pretty much learned. But when I can play it by ear is when I'd say I've really "learned" it. Depends how complicated a tune it is, and how motivated I am to completely memorize it.

 

PS I'm not a great sight reader. It's my crutch for learning. Really a help for me to be able to read.


Yes.. Learning to read music was one of the best things I've done as a fiddler..It Really Helps.

Jul 23, 2021 - 1:03:37 PM
like this

5370 posts since 9/26/2008

When I can bow it any way I want, I know it. 

When I can visualize playing it while whistling, I know it.

When I can play it for 15 minutes without much effort, I know it.

Jul 23, 2021 - 1:04:49 PM
likes this

2394 posts since 10/22/2007
Online Now

I don't have the desire to learn a tune outside of a group. I listen. I quietly start getting pieces. By three of four rounds typically, i can contribute. But anything by ear is arguably an approximation. And do I ever truly learn anything? Oh sure if it's played regularly. But otherwise no.

The tunes I know, cold? I dunno. Maybe less than 50. There are many more tunes that I can quickly relearn. Some time I got soured on collecting tunes. They just didn't get played. I'm not going to force my list on someone else. Although, where my list and your list converge, these are the tunes we can play together! Better yet, play me what you want or can play. I'll quickly learn it if I don’t know it, then we can play. Saves time.

Edited by - farmerjones on 07/23/2021 13:07:33

Jul 23, 2021 - 1:10 PM
likes this

9340 posts since 3/19/2009

quote:
Originally posted by ChickenMan

When I can bow it any way I want, I know it. 

When I can visualize playing it while whistling, I know it.

When I can play it for 15 minutes without much effort, I know it.

 


You'll get your chance tonight!!!

Jul 23, 2021 - 1:54:56 PM
like this

64 posts since 9/4/2007

I have two ideas of what I call having "learned" a tune. The first and simplest is when I can play a clear version of the tune and lead it a session. On the other hand I'm not sure I ever think of anything as completely learned. For instance, I'm still working on stuff in Booth (after 12 years of playing it) that I realized was part of Marcus Martin's version I want to get in. Not particularly trying to do note for note (though that happens) but certainly want to get the feel of the rhythm he gets. All pieces I know seem to be works in process. So, basically a piece is constantly being learned. Maybe what I'm describing is refining, but it feels the same as learning because I'm learning new stuff (finally hearing what I should have caught the first time) to add and change the way I've been playing a tune.

Jul 23, 2021 - 2:00:54 PM
likes this

1854 posts since 12/11/2008

I figured I've learned a tune when I can play it comfortably without too many bonehead mistakes. It doesn't make any difference to me that, when doing an Irish tune, I generally like to look at the score.

Jul 23, 2021 - 2:06:31 PM
like this

Swing

USA

2051 posts since 6/26/2007

When I can play a tune without thinking about it...as well as when I start adding my embellishments to it... I just learned two new tunes by ear and feel comfortable with both after two days....

Play Happy

Swing

Jul 23, 2021 - 2:11:19 PM
like this

1603 posts since 4/6/2014

When things "happen" in the tune that i wasn't expecting, And i think "That sounded OK!!", then it goes pear shaped next time, but i manage to salvage it. And it ends how i wanted it to, but with a little extra bit on the end....Nice...

Jul 23, 2021 - 2:18:15 PM
likes this

743 posts since 8/10/2017

I've learned a tune when I can call it up from memory on demand. Also, when I can't do that anymore because I can't remember how it goes anymore. That happens only after I've learned it.

Jul 23, 2021 - 4:28:17 PM

2379 posts since 10/1/2008

When I get to think about how I want to play it instead of how it is played.....

Jul 23, 2021 - 6:30:48 PM
likes this

250 posts since 6/3/2016

I have a glyph system. It was originally for tunes learned from tab (banjo) or standard music notation (fiddle), but now I use it for tunes learned by ear. I translated my glyphs later into a scale from 0 to 4. A circle (0) means that I am interested in a tune and think that it is within my abilities. A square inside the circle (1) means that I am actively working on learning the tune. An X inside the circle inside the square (2) means that I can play it well enough. I could follow the tune in a jam session, but not lead it. An X inside a square inside a circle (3) means that I can play a tune pretty darned well but have not truly mastered it. I could lead it at a jam session. I fill in the right side of the X (4) when I have truly mastered a tune. I could play it solo in a concert and the audience would be impressed. I have used this scale of 0 to 4 for decades and find it works well. I use it daily to decide what needs practice.

Edit: Something is screwed up in my description of the glyphs. Now I just use the scale of 0 to 4, but that sort of describes why. I used to use glyphs but that does not work for lists of tunes used by ear. 

Edit 2. I still use the glyphs, though. Say I see a tune in the Phillips Collection that I want to learn. I draw a circle in pencil. Then two years later if I see that circle, I know that I like the tune and that it is within my ability. 

Edited by - RinconMtnErnie on 07/23/2021 18:36:51

Jul 23, 2021 - 6:44:48 PM
like this

12317 posts since 9/23/2009

probably never, that's why I just say I "mess around" with this tune or that tune...that way, I don't actually claim to know, and nobody can accuse me of claiming to know anything...lol. I can play 'em however I want as long as I'm only "messin' around" with this tune or that tune.

Jul 23, 2021 - 7:59:32 PM
like this

2394 posts since 10/22/2007
Online Now

quote:
Originally posted by groundhogpeggy

probably never, that's why I just say I "mess around" with this tune or that tune...that way, I don't actually claim to know, and nobody can accuse me of claiming to know anything...lol. I can play 'em however I want as long as I'm only "messin' around" with this tune or that tune.


Similarly, if someone asks if I know such-n-such, but haven't played it for years. I'll say, "well, I play at it. " Usually followed by, "kick it off, let's see what happens."  I'm not afraid of a train wreck. 

Jul 24, 2021 - 11:30:29 AM

doryman

USA

190 posts since 2/10/2020

I have a list of songs that I can lead in a jam when it's my turn. I guess I consider that my "songs I know," list. That would include knowing all the words if it's a singing song.

Jul 24, 2021 - 1:26:27 PM
likes this

12317 posts since 9/23/2009

I forget half of what I have ever messed with or played…it’s kinda sad because there’s so much I forgot about…especially on guitar…gee whiz sometimes I get reminded and just don’t know where to start to try to figure out how to play stuff…I just kinda figure there are current things I fiddle around with, past ones I used to do, and hopefully, more to come in the future. I do hate forgetting stuff though.

Jul 25, 2021 - 7:58:20 AM
likes this

Old Scratch

Canada

794 posts since 6/22/2016

I've come to distinguish between 'learning' and 'remembering' a tune. I've reached the stage where I can 'learn' your average tune in 10-20 minutes - that is, get it to where I can play it end to end 'error-free' - and then walk around the house or sit out in the yard fiddling away on it to my heart's content. But the next day ... what was that tune? How did it go? I'll struggle to pull it out of my head - if I finally have to go back to a written or recorded source, I consider that another minor defeat to add to the long list.

Jul 25, 2021 - 8:30:29 AM
likes this

12317 posts since 9/23/2009

I sure hear ya on that…that’s me exactly.

Jul 25, 2021 - 9:37:40 AM
like this

271 posts since 4/15/2019

I agree with coryobert. I feel I have learned a tune when I like the way I am playing it. I play a song that I really like called Don't let your sweet love die. There is a famous fiddler that plays it different than the way I play it. But I like my way better. As an old cowboy,no pun intended, used to say, no brag just fact.

Jul 25, 2021 - 11:07:27 AM

9340 posts since 3/19/2009

quote:
Originally posted by old cowboy

I agree with coryobert. I feel I have learned a tune when I like the way I am playing it. I play a song that I really like called Don't let your sweet love die. There is a famous fiddler that plays it different than the way I play it. But I like my way better. As an old cowboy,no pun intended, used to say, no brag just fact.


John, I was just thinkin' something similar on my way home from busking today.. I'd been playing "Old Blind Sow" extensively and just today all elements  of the tune fell in place and I now can say I have learned the tune.. Bowing is fluid, fingers fall into the right places and I can do variation here and there.. It is a good feeling.

Jul 28, 2021 - 3:02:34 PM

bsed

USA

4163 posts since 6/23/2007

There's a tune I've played in jams for years (happens to be Rocky Road To Jordan). I would never have said I know that tune. To know a tune (to me) means you can start it, and play it at at least a moderate speed.

Then I saw one of my mentors playing the tune, so I figured that I would try to formally learn it. Which I did. And this week I had the opportunity to lead it in a jam. I can now claim I know that tune.

Jul 28, 2021 - 3:06:43 PM

bsed

USA

4163 posts since 6/23/2007

Lee-When someone says you're not playing a tune right, what they mean is that you're not playing it like THEY do. Just give them a sucker and direct them to the playground.

Jul 28, 2021 - 3:09:47 PM
likes this

bsed

USA

4163 posts since 6/23/2007

quote:
Originally posted by Old Scratch

I've come to distinguish between 'learning' and 'remembering' a tune. I've reached the stage where I can 'learn' your average tune in 10-20 minutes - that is, get it to where I can play it end to end 'error-free' - and then walk around the house or sit out in the yard fiddling away on it to my heart's content. But the next day ... what was that tune? How did it go? I'll struggle to pull it out of my head - if I finally have to go back to a written or recorded source, I consider that another minor defeat to add to the long list.


You're being way too hard on yourself. It takes time to move something as complicated as a fiddle tune from your short-term to long-term memory. Once I learn a new tune, I pound on it every day for at least a week.

Page: 1  2   Last Page (2) 

Hangout Network Help

View All Topics  |  View Categories

0.296875