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Metronome Master Class

Discussion in 'Ask Tony Grey' started by tony grey, Oct 22, 2013.


  1. tony grey

    tony grey

    Oct 2, 2006
    Endorsements; Yamaha, Fodera, Aguilar, TC Electronic, Peterson, Zoom
  2. bkbirge

    bkbirge

    Jun 25, 2000
    Houston, TX
    Endorsing Artist: Steak n Shake
  3. tony grey

    tony grey

    Oct 2, 2006
    Endorsements; Yamaha, Fodera, Aguilar, TC Electronic, Peterson, Zoom
    Thanks man. It's just a balance like everything else :)
     
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I agree with the cons as well as the pros. Metronomes are cool, and they do help you learn to play with a click, which is a necessary skill these days. But they don't teach you how to read a drummer, and they can create a dependency on them, as one of your examples pointed out so well. But as long as you know that going in and keep it in perspective, it's cool.
     
  5. The Diaper Geni

    The Diaper Geni Submissive. And loving it. Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2005
    Central Ohio
    I'm a hee-YUGE metronome fan. But I have, and this is no joke, about the worst natural sense of internal time EVER. EVER!!

    Having said that, I agree with the +'s and -'s. It's a nice blog with info that is both common sense but worth coming back to every now and again.
     
  6. tony grey

    tony grey

    Oct 2, 2006
    Endorsements; Yamaha, Fodera, Aguilar, TC Electronic, Peterson, Zoom
    Thanks man. I don't believe you have the worst internal time ever... You just got to get into it and be there. I sucked badly but it was just my mind set.
     
  7. No drawbacks.
     
  8. miziomix

    miziomix Über on my mind Commercial User

    Sep 28, 2009
    Milan, Kuala Lumpur, Paris.
    Bass builder @ MüB.
    Great! Fully agree on all points. Thank you!
     
  9. tony grey

    tony grey

    Oct 2, 2006
    Endorsements; Yamaha, Fodera, Aguilar, TC Electronic, Peterson, Zoom
    Thank you
     
  10. Fatso

    Fatso

    Sep 5, 2006
    Sydney, Australia
    Thanks Tony .

    I particularly liked the point about moving your body in time with the metronome as a way of gaining an internal time feel which is less reliant on an external time keeping device.
     
  11. tony grey

    tony grey

    Oct 2, 2006
    Endorsements; Yamaha, Fodera, Aguilar, TC Electronic, Peterson, Zoom
    thanks
    I learned that from the great drummer Kenwood Denard and vocalist Larry Watson. I ended up taking dance lessons to loosen up my inner groove.
     
  12. Fatso

    Fatso

    Sep 5, 2006
    Sydney, Australia
    Cool. I'm percolating a theory that dance is window into the distinction between 'time', the ability to accurately divide time into equal intervals, and 'feel' which is more concerned with the momentum in between those intervals - something dancers know all about.

    I often use a wind-up pendulum metronome. I find the physical motion provides a great visual representation of 'swing'
     
  13. tony grey

    tony grey

    Oct 2, 2006
    Endorsements; Yamaha, Fodera, Aguilar, TC Electronic, Peterson, Zoom
    Nice info man. Thanks for sharing. You have an elegant way of thinking.
     
  14. IGotGas

    IGotGas Cajun Rocker

    Sep 26, 2011
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Tony, this is really quite good! Must agree on all points. Funny, but I'd forgotten several points that you make, and frankly I've become lazy (and maybe a bit too [read: unfounded] self confident) and not used my nome as I should. I'll be digging her out in the morning to give me an edge of perfecting the technical aspects of my chops. As an old guy by live performance standards, I gotta keep things tight!
     
  15. shwashwa

    shwashwa

    Aug 30, 2003
    NJ
    nice post, although i personally disagree with drawback number 2, can take away from your musicality. it think it can really add to your musicality. i think its a challenge that needs to be worked on in order to retain you musicality with the metronome and it is certainly achievable, although difficult. i dont know if anyone has had the pleasure of hearing patitucci improvise with the click, but he can groove and push and pull the time, his phrases can breathe, all with the click happening. this is high level playing and a lofty goal, but one that can certainly be achieved. the further apart you place the clicks, for example only on beats 2 and 4 or 1 and 3, as opposed to all 4, the more room you have to breathe, although ive heard him do it with all 4 also. drum machine is cool too, but if your groove is an 8th note groove then you're kind of locked in to the computer's notion of groove. sometimes, the fewer clicks the better, but then again it all depends on what you're working on. when im practicing my double time lines sometimes i want that 16th note groove in the background to keep me in time, because i know in real life ill never sound "metronomic", no matter how hard i try. it will always sound "human" and "imperfect" . i know some of the julliard cats say that no matter what the tempo, the metronome should never go above 90 or 100. this is to develop phrasing and breath in the line. kind of like what was mentioned with regards to dance and the momentum between the intervals, but again, its just a tool, and it all depends on what you're working on at the moment. (and its great to turn it off sometimes too. need to do it all)
     
  16. tony grey

    tony grey

    Oct 2, 2006
    Endorsements; Yamaha, Fodera, Aguilar, TC Electronic, Peterson, Zoom
    Awesome man. It's the details that make the biggest difference :)
     
  17. tony grey

    tony grey

    Oct 2, 2006
    Endorsements; Yamaha, Fodera, Aguilar, TC Electronic, Peterson, Zoom
    Yeah man. I hear what you are saying. I have heard Patitucci with a metronome and he is a beast.
    Of course the ultimate challenge is to be grooving hard and swinging musically with or without a metronome. Good point my friend.
     
  18. Great summary and I especially agree with benefit #8

    I have recorded things at night when tired and in the morning they sound way too slow (and vice versa). Very interesting phenomenon and a metronome is the only way to suss it out.
     
  19. tony grey

    tony grey

    Oct 2, 2006
    Endorsements; Yamaha, Fodera, Aguilar, TC Electronic, Peterson, Zoom
    I learned that when on tours playing along with click tracks. So days they would sound fast and some days slowwww :)
     
  20. fritzk9

    fritzk9 Supporting Member

    May 11, 2005
    Indianapolis, IN
    More comments on being in time:

    Victor Wooten (and others) have suggested breathing with the beat. I notice that if I tense up and don't breath right, my timing is fast. I've been trying to incorporate breathing with the time so that it'll become second nature.

    Regarding moving with the beat: I recently saw the mandolinist Chris Thile, and he moves like a madman when he plays. I'm starting to move, and since Tony also mentions it, I will make more of an effort to move to the beat (and get inside the beat).

    Cheers -
    Fritz
     

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