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Playing familiar songs to improve intonation



 
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kehaulani
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 30, 2019 9:53 am    Post subject: Playing familiar songs to improve intonation Reply with quote

I stumbled into something yesterday that is a real check on one's intonation. It is developmental and probably only pertains to developing players, either beginners or come-back, which I consider myself. And it is simply playing recognizable songs.

I am posting this because it might be an overlooked technique that some can use.

One can play flexibilities like Schlossberg and Irons or other similar exercises and think you're O.K. with intonation. Maybe you play flatter as you ascend but don't really notice it, fooling yourself.

But you can more easily hear with a song that you know. If your intonation is faulty, you know immediately that something is just not right. The intervals you can readily hear because you know how the song must go. Try it and see if it helps.
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Bwat
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 30, 2019 10:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Similar to what you are suggesting. I’m working through a method book with an excellent CD which I play along with using Yamaha’s silent brass. The feedback is immediate and quite revealing I have to say I didn’t get much out of the play alongs until I didn’t have to worry too much about what valves to depress and when. I also find headphones better than just playing along to music coming out of loudspeakers.
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HornnOOb
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 30, 2019 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Been doing that for years. It is indeed beneficial for playing development. Not just for intonation, but phrasing, dynamics etc.
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MalinTrumpet
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 30, 2019 3:11 pm    Post subject: Playing songs to help intonation Reply with quote

Will also help transposition!
LCM
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Bill_Bumps
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 30, 2019 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HornnOOb wrote:
Been doing that for years. It is indeed beneficial for playing development. Not just for intonation, but phrasing, dynamics etc.


Same here.
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tptptp
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 30, 2019 6:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like to do it, too. Some tune will get into my head, and I'll play it in every key, maybe tongued and slurred, maybe add variations.
Good practice on several fronts, but drives my wife crazy!
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some_blue
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 02, 2019 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good point! I find it to be an important piece of the daily mix of playing various elements of trumpet, from fundamentals to intervals, scales, arpeggios, hitting bits of standard and not-so-standard books... always seeking to focus on better sound, expressiveness and beauty.

And over time, so far, finding a list of of several hundred standards “chestnuts” that spark joy... and give a quick gauge on today’s efforts. Some days, it’ seems relatively easy, other days not so much...

Also, recording allows for direct feedback. No place to hide when recording a favored tune.

Listened to literally 15 versions of Stardust yesterday... after I’d given it a pretty good shot... work to do!
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kehaulani
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 02, 2019 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought I would defer that until I got my chops in better shape but I see now how much is missing by not doing it.
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Rod Haney
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 02, 2019 8:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like to listen to and play along with Bb king bluesville on Sirius not only helps intonation, but I’m learning some musical structure and recognizing keys. I’m not too good at it yet, especially trying to play along with guitar solos in f#, but even a blind hog finds an acorn now and again🤣
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Bill_Bumps
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2019 5:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

some_blue wrote:
Good point! I find it to be an important piece of the daily mix of playing various elements of trumpet, from fundamentals to intervals, scales, arpeggios, hitting bits of standard and not-so-standard books... always seeking to focus on better sound, expressiveness and beauty.


So do I! I begin my practice sessions with a couple of pages of Arban's, then move on to big-band and standard numbers, always striving for the richest and most moving sound I can achieve.

The ones I've been working on most recently are:

I Had the Craziest Dream
Ruby
Love Walked In
Tenderly
What Are You Doing New Year's?
Sweet and Lovely
Love, You Didn't Do Right By Me



Quote:
And over time, so far, finding a list of of several hundred standards “chestnuts” that spark joy... and give a quick gauge on today’s efforts. Some days, it’ seems relatively easy, other days not so much...


I can sympathize completely. There are precious days when I can glide through this stuff as though the spirit of Billy Butterfield were guiding me. Other days..yeah, not so much.

Quote:
Also, recording allows for direct feedback. No place to hide when recording a favored tune.


I hadn't thought of that. I must give it a try

Quote:
Listened to literally 15 versions of Stardust yesterday... after I’d given it a pretty good shot... work to do!


Listening to the 1955 Harry James version of Tenderly makes me feel like I'm playing a kazoo. But it sure gives me something to aim for.
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