Ear Training

I will present the exercises as simply as possible first, then any further details after that: 

Here is the basic exercise in the form of a recipe: 

  • Do this for as long as it takes (find the place mentally where failure is not an option...only death(: 
  • Put on the radio (your favorite tunes-Pandora is my favorite because you can choose the variety you want). 
  • On the thickest string, play a note that sounds good with the music you put on. 
  • Do that until you can move to a second note on the same string that sounds good (WITHOUT PASSING OVER NOTES THAT DON'T SOUND GOOD). 
  • Do That until you can move between the two notes on the same string in a way that makes some kind of sense 
  • Begin to hear the notes in your mind's ear before you play them. 
  • It is important to realize that you are "practicing" the act of "hearing" them internally just before you play them. 
  • At first, the time between hearing and playing may be wide. 
  • You are practicing to shorten this length of time. 
  • Add another note on the same string, etc. 
  • Repeat  until you are moving between notes on one string. 

That's it! 

I have been doing the exercise religiously for about 4 or five years. 

This exercise has developed into an ability to: 

  • Copy tunes ( chords, solos, etc.) in real time as they play on the radio. 
  • Play from my gut but not lose direction, instead, propel into unique patterns from my inner ear. 
  • Pull remembered melodies from memory and match chords to them in a relatively short time. 
  • Do the same to the playing of others who are onstage with me. 

Return for the next installment. 

There is much more ahead, but start there, and let me know what begins to happen. 

I will refine as I go.