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Do you have perfect pitch?

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Cut the middle, May 21, 2020 at 4:03 PM.

  1. Cut the middle

    Cut the middle

    Apr 17, 2020
    I don't. I have imperfect relative pitch.

    How 'bout you?
    zon6c-f, HolmeBass, jamro217 and 2 others like this.
  2. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    Vestal, NY
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    No, I have relative pitch down pretty well, but absolute pitch is a lot tougher. Getting better at it with practice.
    LoTone, jamro217 and dkelley like this.
  3. Cut the middle

    Cut the middle

    Apr 17, 2020
    How do you go about practicing that? Thanks?
  4. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    My pitch memory is strong enough that I found it very hard to play a bass tuned in D standard - the notes that I hear in my head made me go for a certain place on the bass, and the note...wasn't there. I could do it, but to be consistent enough to play a gig, I had to rehearse for a week before the gig all on a bass tuned in D standard - even then, I'd hit a note here or there where it was "supposed to be" rather than were it really was.

    I now use 5 string basses when I need notes below E. It's just easier for me than fighting my pitch memory.
  5. I thought that I was almost tone-deaf, but this test confirms that I truly am:

    The Music Lab
    basshawk, pglaser01, Neo1 and 14 others like this.
  6. Cut the middle

    Cut the middle

    Apr 17, 2020
    Gonna take this test one day in the distant future!
    Fat Freddy and Killed_by_Death like this.
  7. IamGroot


    Jan 18, 2018
    Thanks for posting this.

    29/32, 2.6 sec response time with phone that needed firm multiple taps.
    Infidelity and Killed_by_Death like this.
  8. consectaneus


    Sep 23, 2016
    Nope. I recently heard that if you don't have it by age 6 you won't get it. However relative pitch is something everyone can work on. I think it's something I could get decent at but I guess I'm too lazy or not interested enough to pursue it in an academic manner. I want my ear for intervals and pitches to develop in the course of playing a lot of music.
    bobyoung53 likes this.
  9. blastoff99

    blastoff99 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 17, 2011
    SW WA, USA
    Read a most interesting book about this recently, but I'll let someone smarter than me chime in.... Paging @Danielle Meyer
  10. I have very good relative pitch, I don't really even need a tuner although I do use them but I don't have perfect pitch, once I hear one note I can find the pitch on my bass almost immediately. I can hear songs in my head in the correct key though but if you tell me to sing an A for example I can't do it which I believe is what perfect pitch is. There's a guy on youtube who says that young people can learn it but there's a window and once you go by that window it's impossible to learn, again, who knows? I will say though the more I play the better my ears get, if I lay off or slow down practicing I start to lose my hearing acuity slowly.
    Last edited: May 21, 2020 at 11:57 PM
  11. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass **** Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    A sax player friend of mine’s daughter could demonstrate her perfect pitch when she was around 3yrs(iirc). He had a large piano keyboard poster on the floor, he’d play a note and she would go to the correct spot on the keyboard.
    Perfect pitch can be a great tool and blessing but also a PITA in certain situations. You hear stories about vocalists touring back in the day and performing in rooms that have pianos tuned slightly sharp or flat...absolute nightmare.
    MonetBass and bobyoung53 like this.
  12. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Like Milli Vanilli?
    jchrisk1, Bajo Clarkko and bobyoung53 like this.
  13. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass **** Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    Not really
  14. I took it three times,
    first: 27/32, 59%,
    2nd: 26/32, 45%,
    third: 31/32, 98%,
    0.7 seconds each time.

    The first two times I was worrying about my time, the third time I stopped looking at the screen and just listened and didn't worry about the time and did what I thought I should have done the first time. I do think they include reaction time because the quicker you are the more confident you are (?)
    Last edited: May 21, 2020 at 11:58 PM
  15. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass **** Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    30/32 1.2 seconds, should’ve used earbuds. Sadly I’m pretty good with higher pitches...it’s the low notes(that I play for a living!!) that give me trouble I think. FWIW, that test has nothing to do with “perfect pitch”.
    CarpeBasso, Infidelity and bobyoung53 like this.

  16. Yup, it's relative pitch.
    MonetBass likes this.
  17. cableguy


    Jun 4, 2009
    North Bend, WA
    I have it. I actually meant to hit all those clams.....:roflmao:
    equill, Groove Doctor and bobyoung53 like this.
  18. keyboardguy

    keyboardguy Supporting Member

    May 11, 2005
    Did the test; got 32 of 32 correct. 1 second.
  19. consectaneus


    Sep 23, 2016
    Same and no earbuds but you beat my time by .6 seconds. I've been wondering why time is measured in such a test. I also have more trouble hearing the lower pitches. :rolleyes:
  20. DrMole

    DrMole Supporting Member

    The times reported are not reflective of reality. Perhaps my upload speed?

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