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Music readers: here's a laugh for you

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Rockin John, May 1, 2002.

  1. As a total newbie at the art of reading music, I decided on a simplified version of Bach's Air on a G string for my first attempt. I selected that piece because I'd learned to play it by ear so would know how it sounds.

    I sight read the piece with quite some difficulty, wondering why the written music sounded nothing like the same piece I'd learned. I concluded that I'd played it properly to Bach's score and that the 'by ear' version was wrong.

    It wasn't until the following day that I realised the key signature contains two sharps :eek: so that when I did it again with the naturals sharpened.....it sounded correct.

    Just goes to show. :eek: :D :eek:

  2. I have done the same thing. Sometimes I hear things up a fourth or a fifth.

    Still working on improving that. :D
  3. chrisbs


    Jan 12, 2002
    the thing about reading is it is nice to be able to fall back on the score for authenticity.
    However, with classical composers, editors sometimes transpose their editions.
    So you have to take all of it with a grain of salt

  4. td1368


    Jan 9, 2001
    Hey keep it up. I'm strugling with sight reading as well. One of the great benefits that never gets brought up in the tab/reading debates is the ability to play something on another instrument. I think its pretty cool to sit in front of a piano and not be completely dumfounded.
  5. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Rockin' J-
    Sounds as though you were goin' modal... ;)

    When the mood hits, I'll practice a melody(or figure) like that.
    Example: If the melody is in the Key of "C"...I'll practice that melody, say, beginning on the 3rd degree, "E" (STAY IN THE KEY OF "C"!).
    Doing such alters where the whole &/or 1/2 steps fall...basically accomplishing what you experienced by omitting those two sharps. ;)
  6. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    I do that myself sometimes, especially when the key signatures loaded with sharps or flats, i just forget what some of them are and play the note as a natural.
  7. Err, sorry Jim, Cass, but I've no idea what you mean...


  8. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Take a simple melody like "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" & play it in the Key of "C" Major. Starting on the tonic("C")-
    The 1st couple bars would be(in 1/8th note phrasing)-

    Now, still in the Key of "C" Major, begin on the 3rd degree("E"). The melody now becomes-

    Recall, in the Key of "C" Major...NO Sharps & NO Flats.

    Make sense?
    ...or why would anyone in their right mind wanna do this?!


    Anyone ever practice reading backwards(right-to-left)?
    Or upside-down?

  9. ryan morris

    ryan morris

    Sep 11, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    Ha, reading backwards would really be crazy. You'd never know what Key you were in 'till you got to the end, some of the dynamics would simply be afterthoughts, and the piece would be...fun.

    edited to say (my original purpose of posting) that yeah, I've tried it with some of my old saxaphone music that was always easy.
  10. on the whole reading backwards thing. it is harder that you think, even if you know what key your in and apply it to the song/excercise then it is still difficult. Now playing upsidedown is a new one for me.

    On the idea if a song has tons of #'s or flats then a good idea i use sometimes if it is just me and a guitarist playing is to write it into a music writing program and transpose it to another key and if you do the chords the same interval then everthing will be ok and no one will know the difference. For example: Donna Lee by (charlie Parker) or Jaco as we all know. is in the key of A-flat. Not very nice with 4 flats. a little rewriting and a little majic it is now in G with one # (up a dim 4th i think or a 4th)

    I hope that helps.confused: :confused:

    "you can't hold no groove if you ain't got no pocket":
  11. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    ...the whole thing about reading 'backwards'-
    If I'm reading something in a walk(like from the Aebersold books), without fail, my ears will kick in...meaning I'm not really 'reading' anymore. Muscle memory & playing by rote enters the picture.

    Reading the lines 'backwards', FME, forces one to concentrate what's written on the paper.
    You may hear some 'outside' things goin' on...but the harmony is still there(sorta). ;)
  12. ldiezman


    Jul 11, 2001
    Ahh there was nothing like sitting in the middle of rehearsal and the Band Director yelling out "thats (note) sharp!..... how many times do I have to say that blah blah blah..." :)

    Never to me of course ;)

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