Relearning to count rhythms

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by ♠♥CORNET♣♦, Oct 9, 2015.

  1. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    Good luck playing L'Histoire du soldat without actively subdividing!

    There is a problem with us humans. Left to our own devices, we tend to play a dotted eighth sixteenth figure like triplets. In the practice room we can start with TAH-tah-tah-TAH until we can both measure and feel the three sixteenths that make up the dotted eighth. At this point we can "chunk up" from sixteenths to a quarter note pulse, but like a clock chunks up from seconds to minutes to hours, our accuracy depends on the smallest unit chosen.
     
  2. richtom

    richtom Forte User

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    Here are the trumpet parts to the Rite of Spring. (It is in public domain in the USA)
    http://petruccilibrary.us/Scores/sc...71/Stravinsky - Rite of Spring (Trumpets).pdf
    Start on page 12 at rehearsal measure 142 and go to the end.
    Does anyone really think you can possibly play this without coming in wrong without subdividing like mad? Despite the meter changes, there is a specific pulse here
    that if properly subdivided will make this much easier to play. There is much modern music that makes these meter changes look simple. Great music is very mathematical. Hack composers write crap that can't even be subdivided because there is no real pulse. Lousy to mediocre conductors screw up music because they don't have the count and pulse firmly in their grasp. Those of us who have sat in with excellent orchestras, bands, or other groups WHO CAN ACTUALLY COUNT (I wish there were italics) realize that the pulse of the music is constantly subdivided, either simply or more complexly.
    Subdividing is like juggling. Practice it enough and you find the rhythms.
    Rich T.
     
  3. Reedman1

    Reedman1 Piano User

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    Thanks for the link!

    There are italics. You should be able to see the HTML command buttons in a menu bar above your response typing area. Or you can use your normal italics command, whatever operating system you use. Or write the HTML: letter i in square brackets to begin your passage, /i in square brackets to complete it.
     
  4. Sethoflagos

    Sethoflagos Utimate User

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    Bit of cross-purposes here maybe. Not saying for a moment that there aren't places where you have to count very carefully. And you give good examples. But they're still counting beats rather than subdivisions of beats aren't they?

    I was thinking more how you would treat a rhythm like this:

    [​IMG]

    A simple drummers' rhythm but too much for me, sight-reading on the fly. However, I know how I'd approach it. And I think I'd only be counting to 12 in the practice room, until the pulse pattern was burnt into memory.

    Edit

    Just had a browse through the Soldier's Tale again, and yes the alternating 3/8-2/4-5/8-3/4 bits will have to be counted in fast quavers so I guess that counts as splitting beats or hairs or something :-)
     
  5. BigDub

    BigDub Fortissimo User

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    I see what everyone is talking about, and that a mathematical mind is very handy when counting beats. The problem, for me is that I don't have a mathematical mind and sit next to superb sight readers, jealously, ( somewhat) and wait until they plow through tricky rhythmic sections, then feel it myself and try not to mess that up and "mimic" them as best as I can.
     
  6. trumpetsplus

    trumpetsplus Fortissimo User

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    In your music example the beams are confusing. First beat implies that the sextuplets are 3+3, second beat implies 2+2+2. For 3+3, the second beat should have no beams. If the hemiola effect is wanted, then the first beat should comprise 2 16th note (semiquaver) triplets......
     
  7. BigDub

    BigDub Fortissimo User

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    But for the fact that I have no idea of what you're talking about, it makes a lot of sense, I imagine.
     
  8. Sethoflagos

    Sethoflagos Utimate User

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    Yes, possibly. It's just how it dropped out of MuseScore, Ivan, and no deep profundity was intended. It's just a 4 beats against 3 cross-rhythm that we used to play around with as kids. Google tells me it's a vert'cal sesquitertium (!) rather than a hemiola (3 against 2). So I guess it's both 3+3 and 2+2+2 simultaneously.


    Edit

    Off-topic, but for a better explanation of cross-rhythms and the West African connection see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cross-beat.
     
  9. Reedman1

    Reedman1 Piano User

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    Oy. Let's simplify. Sometimes you can feel, or memorize. Other times you have to count. It's really helpful if you get a chance to practice the stuff you have to count before rehearsal or performance. If you want to develop or redevelop the skill, you're going to have to just sit down and practice it, with examples from simple to complex, and with patience and kindness towards yourself.
     

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