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#215541 - 09/20/13 09:02 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: Ryszard]
Matt Finley Online   content
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Plenty of room for everyone and all their different musical skills.
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#215562 - 09/20/13 11:13 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: rockstar_not]
Mac Offline
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Originally Posted By: rockstar_not
To Mac and Eddie, unless you both were prodigies, that ability took you years of woodshedding where you had the chords in front of you or someone calling out the chords or telling you the structure as you were playing.


Um, no.

If ALL aspects are taught congruently from the beginning, the process is relatively invisible to the student.

Times have changed things, there are more and more great music teachers out there who have adopted that method, but there are still those who do things that I think should be illegal, such as those teaching piano out of those well known picture books that teach nothing but reading the dots and playing same.

In my case, for some reason I started out playing more by ear than by the charts that the piano teachers placed in front of me. It was "easier" and thus I pulled all kind of tricks as a young kid to get the teacher to play next week's lesson for me, etc. - rather than actually attempt to read the music.

At some point, I got caught at this by a certain sharp teacher, and, of course, there was a bit of an unpleasant confrontation in which the teacher prevailed and I was thus forced to have to learn to read what was on the page.

From that experience, it just seemed a natural to me to try to learn to play the "cool" songs that I heard on the radio and television and on recordings, when there were no charts of such readily available to the kid.

Sometimes I would "find" chord structures that I had no idea how to name at the time, but the ears told me that I'd found the right notes in whatever that song at the time was.

I think it all really depends upon the teaching and learning methods that someone is exposed to in their early musical training more than any other one thing. And time and the empirical results from my own adopted teaching methods and teaching young people myself in private music lessons bears that out.

We've all likely encountered those folks who can sight read and play what's on the chart seemingly rather effortlessly, but cannot play even the simplest I - IV - V progression or song by ear. Many of them balk at having to even try. In my opinion, that is a travesty that condemns a certain teaching method that only teaches the one aspect of the thing, creating "pianists" who are really, IMO, "sight reading robots". Never understanding the underlying and rather simple relationships between the Western Tempered Scale Musics and what someone else has written on a page for them.

I'm wuite certain that the original composers of those notes written on the page could not have come up with the compositions without being able to use the marvelous and infallible abilities of the human ear coupled with the gray matter in between, or, as we call it mostly, "playing by EAR".

A few years later in my piano lessons, coupled of course with the Trumpet lessons, I found out that what I had been doing naturally all along, trying to figure out what others had played on records and such, had a name: "Transcribing".

And, on the other side of that same coin, I've known, worked and played with some rather stellar performers who had managed to use the human ear to teach them to play just about anything they wanted to play, but had managed to stay right where I started at, these kind of musicians are those who cannot read even the simplest of music charts, yet can play seemingly anything by ear.

I am thankful that the music teachers and musicians that influenced me at an early age somehow managed to pound it into my rather thick and stubborn little skull that a well-rounded musician should work on BOTH the reading AND the ear at the same time . Again, my experiences in private instruction bear that out, as the person who is adept at only one of the two sides of this coin often has a generally difficult time adding the one to the other after years of only doing it one way. The first step in such endeavor has often been getting past the human nature of the thing, those who can only read music in order to play a piano piece, or those who can only play by ear, doesn't matter which, have developed a rather stubborn defensive argument against having to back up and deal with it. Attitude. Once you get past that hurdle, most all of them manage to blossom, though. There have been some who have chosen to simply quit, though. And that's a shame.


--Mac
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#215565 - 09/20/13 12:06 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: Ryszard]
eddie1261 - gone Offline
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Prodigy? That is relative, but I did start lessons 2 months short of age 5. However, the story of what got me into lessons is telling.

My cousin John, 10 years older and now sadly deceased (I miss you very much big cousin) was a ragtime piano fanatic. When he was nearing 15, and I was nearing 5, he was practicing on their old upright and I was in the room watching. He was my hero and I watched everything he did. For some reason, 57 years later, I remember that he was playing Hard Hearted Hanna. When he finished, he went up to his room. I sat down at the piano and started to play what he was playing. My mother and aunt came to the room and I heard my mother ask "Didn't John just go upstairs? Who is playing?" And my aunt said "well, there's only 4 of us here..." He came running downstairs and asked me "How did you learn how to do that?", to which I replied "Watching you." And I will never forget the look he got on his face when he said "You learned how to play piano by WATCHING me? Aunt Mil, get him into lessons RIGHT NOW!"

And I started lessons 2 weeks later.

I can still hear something (nothing as complicated as Dream Theater) and walk to the piano and play a close approximation of it. It's called "ear", and yes, not everybody has it. But at some point, people need to learn how to recognize. It really isn't any more difficult than your ability to know a song by hearing the intro to it IF you have any playing skills at all.

This is a great example of why I laughingly tell people that Real Band has ruined me for playing. I can't play parts better than the software, so I leave the computer generated parts in. However, I CAN play. The extension of that is people who have NO playing skills at all using Real Band to create music. They have to have SOME compositional skills and a rudimentary knowledge to create chord progressions, but that does not equal "ear". It's like perfect pitch. You have it or you don't. The next level down is relative pitch, where if you have a pitch in your head you can tell what the note is relative to that pitch. (A phone dial tone is an F. If you listen to that pitch, you can go from there.)

If you can play, you have to have SOME ear. If you want to identify a chord, play some notes on your piano or guitar until you hit it. You can't miss it more than 11 times.
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#215567 - 09/20/13 12:17 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: Ryszard]
Mac Offline
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My experience has been that Absolute Pitch may not be the panacea that those who don't have the ability may think it to be.

Relative Pitch, on the other hand, is what musicians and composers ahould strive to develop in full.

The reason I say that is because you will not always encounter a musical event that is tuned to A-440 - and that can be a detriment for the Absolute Pitch person, to put it mildly.

The US telephone dial tone consists of two tones at the same time, one is indeed an F, but the other tone is an A above the F.

A Major 3rd in key of F, but savvy guitarists can use the dial tone to tune their A string to 440.


--Mac
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#215569 - 09/20/13 12:22 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: eddie1261 - gone]
Mac Offline
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I remember an anecdotal story written into a biography of Woldgang Amadeus Mozart that may apply here.

Not sure if it actually happened or not, but it does indeed have that certain Ring of Truth to it.

Apparently Mozart's father caught a very young Amadeus seated in front of dad's piano and plunking away at the keys.

Not surprising there, since this is something that just about any child will do after witnessing an older person playing the piano.

But Mozart's dad said to the toddler something along the lines of, "What are you doing at my piano?"

And Wolfgang replied, "I'm trying to find the notes that LIKE each other!"

By George, I think he must have FOUND them.

Indeed.


--Mac
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#215581 - 09/20/13 01:22 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: Ryszard]
rockstar_not Online   content
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Mac and Eddie, just so you know, I'm in your camp. I can pretty much figure out stuff, but it was only after a few years of the 'Fingerpower' and other Schaum lessons, AND an astute 2nd piano teacher that could hear/see that I leaned toward 'playing by ear' that she taught me chord THEORY and why what I liked to hear, sounded the way that it did. At that time, it was playing the Journey hits to make the girls swoon that I was drawn to. Jonathan Cain wrote some pretty nice keyboard parts back in the day that would make the girls come and sit next to you on the piano bench!

Trust me, when I figured out how to play "Open Arms" on my own, and that first girl sat down on the bench beside me - I was in and wanted to learn more on how to read the chord charts and play from the heart, not memory.

Chord charts then became a tool, but not a substitute - because very often whomever provided the chart didn't do such a great job, and all of the passing notes and transitions simply weren't there in either the chord diagram nor the written out parts.

So, I didn't learn this from a classics/standards standpoint, but out of pure personal interest to advance my cause with those of the fairer sex.

I can't pick out the more complicated jazz forms by ear, but the sus4, add2, maj7, min7, augmented forms, chords over roots, I can do a pretty good job with them by ear. But I'm not opposed to short-cutting it either if it's faster than my estimating and pecking.

I think we probably agree on this, but I was just pointing out that Eddie's analogy was a little harsh and critical of something that's central to the wonders of PG products in general - their unique gift to the music software world of not needing to know how to play every instrument, or do proper arrangements by hand. They are shortcuts, and not always perfect - but a great springboard.

-Scott

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#215596 - 09/20/13 03:10 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: Ryszard]
eddie1261 - gone Offline
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Scott, I do not believe I was harsh at all, but the old IMHO applies.

As one last comment and then I will leave this thread, let me ask this.

In February, when everybody has their W2 forms, you go out and you buy Turbo Tax. People come to you and you do their taxes. Every return is correct, accurate, passes IRS muster....

Does that make you a tax accountant?

I'll answer for you. No. You are a software user. Being a tax accountant requires you knowing WHY the numbers come out like they do.

You can crank out a tune with BIAB, but until you know WHY the key of A has 3 sharps (the whole step. whole step, half step... thing) you are not a musician. You are a software user.

I know I sound condescending and haughty about this, but after 57 years and a BA, I take offense when people who have not paid dues crash my musicians party.
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#215597 - 09/20/13 03:33 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: eddie1261 - gone]
rockstar_not Online   content
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Eddie, I don't know if you will read this, but I see you actually making my point, as well as Mac admitting to using the ACW.

You might not see it that way, which I'm o.k. with you not seeing it that way. But there's a reason you use RB/BIAB, there's a reason Mac even bothers with the ACW, and I see that there's market for an app which helps to suss out what chords might be in a song; not unlike the ACW.

I'm not making any claims on whether this defines whether someone is a musician or not to use or not use this thing as a tool.

I am saying that it can be a shortcut, an adjunct, a tool in the belt, a helper, a time saver, etc.

I'm not saying it's a replacement for hard work.

I'm not saying it's a replacement for some God-given innate ability.

etc.

It's a tool. I will not call anyone names for using it.

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#215611 - 09/20/13 05:33 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: rockstar_not]
Mac Offline
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Loc: Chesapeake, Virginia USA
Originally Posted By: rockstar_not
Eddie, I don't know if you will read this, but I see you actually making my point, as well as Mac admitting to using the ACW.


Got to love the bias in that word usage, ole buddy.

"Admitting"

I think you should reread exactly what I said about my use of the ACW and what I use it for. Song Layout, typically ignoring the chords it reports, which, in the kind of music recordings I typically have to transcribe in order to learn, are always bizarre and wrong chords from the ACW.

In my case, the ACW simply saves me from having to count bars, figure out the song form, length, etc. And that is indeed a shortcut. I also like having the Audio File import right with everything so that I can use it from within BB, going from bar to bar and manually entering the correct chords.

So I did not "admit" to using the ACW at all for the purpose this thread is about, identifying chords.

I don't use it for that.

If it worked better for the kind of songs I do, I likely would, though.


--Mac
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#215629 - 09/20/13 10:52 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: Ryszard]
eddie1261 - gone Offline
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Know also that in about 3 years with RB I have never done a cover tune, so there has not been a reason or need for me to identify a chord. They are all my songs and I know what they are because I entered the chord chart myself. That may be germaine here....
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#215630 - 09/21/13 01:28 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: Ryszard]
rockstar_not Online   content
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Uncle!

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#215631 - 09/21/13 02:04 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: Ryszard]
JoanneCooper Offline
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Posts: 2287
Loc: South Africa
I grew up wearing holes in the records trying to work out the chords. Then, when the internet came along I discovered "other peoples transcriptions" and that saved some time and effort. Now I use acw in conjunction with a very cheap tool called "chords" that will recognised the basic chords for you while the song is playing in Winamp. I also use this tool when playing live and some bright spark says "can you play American pie" and I have the backing track on my computer. I think this tool only cost about $15 but I find it incredibly useful.

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#215662 - 09/21/13 11:52 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Standalone third-party chord-detection app [Re: Ryszard]
eddie1261 - gone Offline
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http://youtu.be/rWzDRgnxvi4

Start at about 59 seconds.....

Just my way to punctuate my thoughts.
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