Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Techniques for training your ear?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by RadAquabatCadet, Jul 26, 2002.


  1. Ive been wondering if there are any techniques you could use to train your ear. If you happen to know any I would really appriciate that. Because sometimes I get really tired of looking on the internet for tabs and it not having what im looking for. I know it will take a while to perfect training your ear. But once again please tell me if you have a technique you would like to share. Thanks.
     
  2. Thanks a lot!
     
  3. virtual.ray

    virtual.ray

    Oct 25, 2000
    There's a cool tutorial on www.Activebass.com It's an audio quiz where they play a C-F-G chord sequence and then an individual note and ask you which note it was.They keep a running tally of how many you get right.If you get one wrong you get a 2nd chance.There's an alternate version where they play 2 notes and you have to name the interval.
    I was surprised the 1st time I did it;some of the ones I thought would be hard were easy for me and others I needed several tries to get right.I missed C# (a half step up) several times.
     
  4. Jason Carota

    Jason Carota Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2002
    Lowell, MA
    Adam Nitti has an article in the Feb. 2002 issue of Bass Player dealing with intervals ("The Intervallic Approach.") This article is part of a series he had on ear training.

    I remember studying this series for a while and found it very useful. I still use some of it in my daily practice routine.

    edit: typo
     
  5. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    Gary Willis has an excellent book/CD set on ear training for basists and guitarists. He starts out with intervals, both ascending and descending.

    If you could spend time daily playing intervals and learning how to regonize them so youy can develop skill with relative pitch (being able to know how far apart note pitches are in relation to one another, it might take quite awhile, but eventaully you would begin to be able to figure out songs by ear.
     
  6. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    I just dragged out an old book I have by Chuck Sher, "The Improvisor's Bass Method." He has several excellent ear training exercises. I will list a few of the easier ones.

    1. Hear something mentally first, then try to play it. Start with nursery rhymes or other simple melodies.

    2. Try singing a bassline along with a record. Tape this and transcribe your ideas.

    3. Sing a phrase and then play it.

    4. Play an open string. Let it ring as you sing scales, chords (one note at a time), intervals, or melodies with that note as tonic.

    5. Practice sight-singing written material (if you read music.)
     
  7. Much thanks to all that answered!
     
  8. Lazy

    Lazy

    May 30, 2001
    Vancouver BC
    I mentioned it in my other post. Start humming. I thought my ear was terrible until I started humming the lines to myself. It even helps your ability to create your own lines. Trust me, I felt hopeless for a long time until I started doing this.