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Re: metronome dependence

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Posted by Carol Kaye on December 27, 1999 at 23:23:47:

In Reply to: Re: metronome dependence posted by Dio Taboada on December 25, 1999 at 11:07:32:

: : : I've been practicing regularly with a metronome for years now (a practice Jeff

: : : Berlin has railed against) and I am starting to believe he's right. When the

: : : metronome is on, I hardly notice it, however, once I turn it off, I find myself

: : : dragging the time. I am starting to wonder if habitually practicing with the

: : : metronome is hurting more than its helping. Does anybody have any advice on

: : : developing good time other than through the metronome or on kicking the metronome

: : : habit?
From Carol Kaye: I'd say that you are probably using it on *every beat*, then it is a "dependence problem". You should do what all the fine jazz musicians did in the 50s in Los Angeles, put it at 1/2 speed and use its downbeats as only the back-beats (ala drum backbeats) on beats 2 and 4.
And try it with differnent tempi, different styles for about 2-3 days in a row then only occasionally. You will groove with it, no doubt about it and it will help your overall time sense when playing with others. Bass players especially need to have their time-sense together as others probably don't in a band (inc. many drummers who are concentrating on fills and being kind of flashy rather than the groove). The bass player should never *lean* on the drummer but pull *with* the drummer to help lay the foundation of the groove for the rest of the band. I have some Playing Tips along these lines that will probably help.

: : : Thanks.

: : Yeah, it would help knowing what you are working on when you are using the metronome. I'm not sure why you think your time is going to get better by not using the metronome.Do you ever play duo with another player and the nome? This tends to point out time problems since you have to actually make music with another person and keep on the click.

: : What kind of music do you play? I would generally be cautious about playing along with records unless you know the time is good on them (the Aebersold BIRD record rushes like a bastard, as does pretty much anything with Art Blakey & the Messengers). You want to have confidence in your time feel. If you cna play with the nome and no problems, and with someone else and the nome with no problems, then you maybe not hearing the time from the downbeat of the tune. If you can hear the melody at it's original tempo throughout the tune, then you shouldn't have problems.

: : How long have you been playing? Is fatigue a factor? How's the drummer? If you feel liked you are locked in with him and the time is dragging, then you're not playing the tune you're playing with the drummer. Anyway, more info and we can get more specific.

: I think that the use of the metronome it's very important for every musician in the world, because you need to have a good time. This is very important, because if you dont have a good time, your technique and concept it doesn't help you for anything......and dont forget this: You are a bass player, and that means that you are an acompanion the use of the metro will give you the most important think for a bass player: Good Time.

: If you feel bored when you use the metro, you can try with a drum's cool!! So you can create any rithm since Rock or Jazz, to zamba or Salsa if you wanted. Maybe that's what you need....the Drum Machine it's a great good luck!

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