Audition Piece

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by DrDean, Feb 8, 2016.

  1. dangeorges

    dangeorges Pianissimo User

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    I sort of understand your approach, but listening to jazz in general (as an example) in order to get a feel for how it's played is different than listening to a particular song so that you don't need to know how to read the music on the page in front of you.

    This is why music (modern music, at least) is notated. So the player can read and play it. Maybe in the ancient days of music, people learned a piece by listening to someone else play it, but that's not needed if you have the music.

    When my students ask me to play it so they know how it sounds, I push back and tell them to play the music, and then they will know how it sounds. Play the right notes, rhythms, dynamics, etc., and it's a done deal! The tune is now learned. Now comes style - another thread completely.

    Oh - one HUGE drawback to "trusting" the internet to do your learning for you is that you WILL stumble on someone playing a piece wrong. Like the first youtube example. Boy did he swing those notes!
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2016
  2. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I disagree on a couple of points, particularly where learning to solo jazz is concerned. I can't tell you the number of times I've heard it suggested to someone to listen to the greats, transcribe, and learn to play what they are playing, and in fact there are tons of books in print that have done just that - transcriptions of famous or noteworthy recordings of the greats, so that an aspiring soloist can get their head around the mindset of what's going on. Granted, the purpose is to give the aspiring player a sort of footing so they can expound upon that and develop their own style, but it's all there in print nonetheless, and the whole idea behind it is to play along with the recordings to get an idea not only for the rhythms and notes themselves, but also for phrasing, articulation and inflection.

    I also disagree with the notion that playing the right notes, rhythms dynamics, etc is the recipe for playing "music." That might get you 3/4 of the way there, but I've known so many technicians on instruments who just don't "get it" - they sound stale and sterile, even though they are playing everything "correctly."

    And while there maybe be the occasional recording online to stumble on that gets it wrong, there are going to be a lot more that get it right. A prime example - Bud Herseth playing Mahler 5.
     
  3. dangeorges

    dangeorges Pianissimo User

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    I didn't say that "playing the right notes, rhythms, dynamics, etc." is the recipe for playing "music."" It's a way to know how the tune "goes". How all the pieces fit together.
    For playing it musically, this will need to come from within the player. Style and interpretation come from listening to the best, and then incorporating that into your own style.

    Transcription of jazz solos is different than what the OP wanted. In a way, that solo is already transcribed. It's there on the page. For Arban's, not too much room for interpretation and style (although some). But for Jazz, that's a different story, style-wise.

    I think it's obvious to any player that listening to the great players (and the not-so-great) is the best way to hear styles, phrasing, and interpretation.

    I am not alone here, by the way, in thinking that the OP's goal was to try to avoid learning the piece by hearing it played. It saves him (or her) the "trouble" of actually reading the music. That was my take on the question. What you're talking about here is something completely different, in my opinion.
     
  4. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I guess you have to consider the end goal. Ultimately, does it really matter which comes first - the knowledge of how the piece sounds, or recognizing it in written form?

    In my beginning stages as a trumpet player, I learned a lot by rote. The reason for this was because I switched from sax after a few months into my first year of band (I switched so we could use the trade-in value of my sax toward a new trumpet for my older sister - I took on her old cornet) and my first few days, I was lost because although I quickly learned to play a C scale, and could play a couple of tunes, I didn't really know how they looked on the page and how that correlated to the horn in my hand, so I learned a lot by listening and watching my fellow trumpet players.

    It all came out in the wash eventually - I back-filled my knowledge of rhythm and notation, and went on to become a fairly decent player. I've just never been of the opinion that you're hurting a budding musician by letting them know how something sounds first, and in fact, it goes a long way toward reducing and eliminating frustration that I've seen when a teacher forces the issue and makes a kid try to figure something out when they aren't yet fully equipped to do so.

    The kid doesn't avoid learning it by hearing it played - it's impossible for him not to learn it - he's got to be able to read it in order to execute it correctly. What we're talking about here is a difference in philosophy for how to learn something. Again, who cares if the kid listens and plays along rather than picking it apart little by little? The former method makes it quicker and easier, and probably more complete in the end because of the confidence in having something they know to be correct in which to compare their own playing.

    Gosh - it's too bad Jimi Hendrix never knew how to read music. Can you imagine what an awesome musician he might have become if he did?
     
  5. MusicianOfTheNight

    MusicianOfTheNight Pianissimo User

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    I now see why listening is important. But I always try to sight read before I listen, as it gives me sight reading practice and a small knowledge of the song. Sight reading is essential for any professional musician. Listening is great, and I do it all the time, but I still try and sight read beforehand.

    Supposedly Chet Baker could not count very well. Look how good he got.
    Next look at any classical trained musician (Maurice André or Wynton Marsalis) I bet they could sight read anything with out any errors.

    It's a two sided problem, both work but a mix of the two is probably the best choice.
     
  6. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I learned more about how to sight read playing next other people who sight read better than I did, than any work I did toward that end in the practice room. It's instant identification of the mistake, as well as the correct way to execute it, with the added plus that you don't drop beats or lose time because that's already being handled, so you learn how to roll with the mistake and get back on track.
     

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