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Aug 24, 2021 - 4:21:10 PM
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34 posts since 3/14/2020

quote:
Originally posted by Banjfoot

I guess one candidate thought I have is, maybe try recording a given tune one measure or two at a time. Play it back to get somewhat instant feedback (to your own ears) and see if you are hearing what you intended to play. Repeat this many times, slowly, carefully, etc.

You could do this also for very simple things such as pinch patterns, short licks, basic melodies you are humming, etc.

I don't know if that's worth a try, glad you are having fun and hope you keep having fun with your banjo and the music, that's priority #1 I think!


I have done this, but only playing the whole song, My teacher has told me to practice the songs in chunks, a couple measures at a time.

Aug 25, 2021 - 8:10:17 AM
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1267 posts since 8/7/2017

Audacity's editing is not destructive. You can undo any editing you do; it undos in reverse order to what you did. After you save the edited file, then the changes are permanent. I just save my edited files under a new name, which leaves the original intact. And you still have the .mp3 or video original also since Audacity only edits it's own files.

Really, if one is going to comment about a program, one should run it and learn it first. I have nothing against other editing programs...and I've not run them, so my comments on them would be less than useful.

Aug 25, 2021 - 8:21:39 AM

12281 posts since 6/2/2008
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Audacity is a destructive editor because it changes the source file that you open or import.

GarageBand, Reaper and most other DAWs are non-destructive in that the source file is untouched. All your edits are overlaid, or perhaps applied to an internal copy. Of course every time you save, you wipe out your precious edits and only have those previous versions if you have exported or rendered the file.

Aug 25, 2021 - 9:46:01 AM
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_jth

USA

14 posts since 8/24/2021

quote:
I do not have issue with what string I need to pick. That has always been pretty easy for me. It is all of the other stuff...rests, the difference between a measure and a bar (which from what I understand there is none), I had issues with figuring out how use a metronome.  Most of this stuff I have a pretty good grasp of now,,,I think.

The thing that really helped me with timing was backing up recordings. I would go on YouTube, find a recording (didn't really matter which genre, though classical and jazz could be a bit too complex) fumble around and find what key it was in, and then practice backup rythym. Thumb picks thick string (fourth string) other fingers pick other strings at once. That will work if the song is in "duple meter" (2/2, 2/4, 4/4) If the song is in triple meter you will have to do two plucks with your other fingers (3/2, 3/4, 6/8) eventually you will figure out what sounds right. Personally I do not read rests in tablature other than they mean don't play. I listen to the song, get a feel for the rests, and go from there. (In a pinch it is usefull to know how many strums till you play again though.) Anyway what has worked for me.

Aug 25, 2021 - 10:11:41 AM
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74 posts since 12/12/2019

quote:
Originally posted by pmartin9363
quote:
Originally posted by TheWoodBoss

If you are having problems reading tab, print out your tabs and write the string number and fret position above to get used to understanding the tab. I can see how the bottom string position on the tab being the top string on the instrument can make it confusing. If you do this to a few songs you want to play it will get you more familiar with tab.


I do not have issue with what string I need to pick. That has always been pretty easy for me. It is all of the other stuff...rests, the difference between a measure and a bar (which from what I understand there is none), I had issues with figuring out how use a metronome.  Most of this stuff I have a pretty good grasp of now,,,I think.


Well you seem to be learning just fine, no different than anyone else. Just keep picking !!

Aug 25, 2021 - 10:30:15 AM
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12281 posts since 6/2/2008
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To be clear: I'm not trashing Audacity or denigrating anyone for using it. I'm pretty sure I tried it years ago and ended up liking GarageBand and Reaper better. To each his own.

I have other free and paid software for recording streaming audio that I don't have as a file on my computer as well as free or paid software for slowing it down for learning and practice.  I use the slowdown function in QuickTime Player 7 or Transcribe! whenever I'm working out and tabbing a recorded piece. One feature of Transcribe! I haven't seen anywhere else is note recognition. If I'm having trouble discerning a note, Transcribe! allows narrowing the playback down to a single note -- which you can isolate by viewing the waveform. Then it just plays that note constantly and displays the note name.  This has been tremendously helpful.

I can see the convenience of one piece of software that does all this.

I don't see the need to save a slowed-down version. To my thinking, slow-down is merely a playback function for a temporary need. Same as volume.  Back in the 70s, I used to slow down tapes to half speed. Same tape I could play at full speed for ordinary listening.

Aug 26, 2021 - 12:29:29 AM
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phb

Germany

2979 posts since 11/8/2010

quote:
Originally posted by Old Hickory

Audacity is a destructive editor because it changes the source file that you open or import.


My version of audacity always asks me upon opening an audio file whether I want to work directly on it or on a copy.

Aug 26, 2021 - 3:15:30 PM
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1267 posts since 8/7/2017

If you are worried about losing your source file, then make a copy of it. Put the original in a folder you label "Originals, do not edit or modify". Put the copy in another folder you label "Mess with these to your heart's content".

Use whatever editor you choose on the Copy.

Once again, Audacity is free. It was made, and improved, by volunteers: this was the normal Thing when I got into home computing in the 1980's. And the philosophy still exists. I've got nothing against programs you buy. It's your time and money, and you can spend each any way you want, far as I am concerned.

Sep 2, 2021 - 12:00:46 AM
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666 posts since 6/8/2005

I, too am dyslexic.

But I didn't know about it until I had been playing for seven years. In a way, it has actually helped me to improvise.

In order to solo over chord changes, I'd make 5 or 6 studies for chord connection and after practicing these studies for awhile, I can't remember which is which. So I dyslex and end up putting things together that were previously apart and rearranging things on the fly just to maintain the continuity.

This revelation is probably not helpful to those that feel dyslexia is an impediment. Dyslexia also keeps me from accurately touch typing sometimes. Other times it's no problem.

Pat-

Sep 2, 2021 - 6:51:01 AM
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3910 posts since 3/28/2008

One thing you haven't told us (I think) is whether you've had any musical experience prior to taking up the banjo. As a teacher I've come to see that my most important job is to teach students how to think in musical terms--rhythm, pitch, phrase structure, etc. Some teachers--who after all are experienced musicians--seem to have forgotten what it's like to NOT think musically, and therefore neglect this important aspect of teaching music. Your extra pinch sounds like the sort of mistake I've seen many beginner students make; I bet they're not all dyslexic!

Also, how does your dyslexia manifest itself in your non-musical activities? A good teacher might be able to use that information to teach you more effectively.

Sep 2, 2021 - 7:43:29 AM
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34 posts since 3/14/2020

quote:
Originally posted by Ira Gitlin

One thing you haven't told us (I think) is whether you've had any musical experience prior to taking up the banjo. As a teacher I've come to see that my most important job is to teach students how to think in musical terms--rhythm, pitch, phrase structure, etc. Some teachers--who after all are experienced musicians--seem to have forgotten what it's like to NOT think musically, and therefore neglect this important aspect of teaching music. Your extra pinch sounds like the sort of mistake I've seen many beginner students make; I bet they're not all dyslexic!

Also, how does your dyslexia manifest itself in your non-musical activities? A good teacher might be able to use that information to teach you more effectively.


I was diagnosed with this when I was in elementary school, and my parents, I guess, just assumed that I knew I had it, No idea, and it just came up in conversation with my mother last summer while we were camping in the Finger Lakes of NY. That said, my whole entire life I have dealt with things that I could not explain, but attributed to my other learning disabilities. I have auditory processing issues,, which essentially means that things that I hear get lost in translation from my ear to my brain.  I also have dysnomia, which, as I explained to my students when I taught, is I have a bunch of manila envelopes in my brain with all of the information but, none of the envelopes are marked.  There are people in my wife's family that i have know for 25 years, and I will meet them at the grocery store and cannot recall their name.

Now that I know that I have dyslexia, I can somewhat explain a lot of things. I  am voracious reading, but I am a slow reader. I have never been able to plow through a book in a few days. I constantly flip numbers in telephone numbers. When I taught, I would constantly spell words incorrectly on the white board.  In college  I was almost a straight A student, with the exception of Spanish. I took it because I wanted to get a Ph.D, in history. It kicked my butt. Barely got through it the first year despite spending 1-2 hours a night studying. Second year I had a much better professor and was able to do a bit better.

So, now that I playing banjo many of these issues are reappearing.  I practice almost every night for about 30 minutes, Sometimes more on the weekends. I think I have a pretty good process. learn in chucks without the metronome until I can play the entire song without (I believe) mistakes, then I start using the metronome. My timing has gotten a lot better, and I can almost play without looking at my right hand,  Still have to look sometimes when I fret. But, when I finally believe that I am ready to submit a video I get feedback that I am playing rolls wrong or adding pinches....ect. I submitted Dinks song for the 2nd time and Noam (my teacher) told me that four times I had removed three notes from the longer rolls in the song.  I had been practicing the song with the tab in front of me, so I was looking at it and not doing if from memory. After I got feedback, I practiced it again while really paying attention to the tab,,,,and still played it wrong,  I fixed it one of the rolls (I hope) by counting the amount of times that I was supposed to pick the second string. 

Another issue that I have is that the course has there videos at 55bpm and 80bpm in which the instructor plays the song with a backing track with the intent that students play along.  With my auditory processing issues, this is just information overload. I have started using the backing tracks more often, and I feel that it is helping.

I have thought about getting a live teacher. But I believe that is one teacher in the town a live and he only teachers during the day. All others are about an 45 mins away. I live just North of Boston, so that could easily turn into a 2 hour trip one way for a 30 min class. Nor worth it.

Sep 2, 2021 - 7:50:25 AM
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666 posts since 6/8/2005

Now this is getting interesting. If dyslexia is a disorder, and the idea is to find a teaching method or program that compensates for it, then it only seems logical that it has to be tied to other things a teacher cannot possibly know about each individual's inner experience of musical perception. It's like knowing about different fingerprint types, but not knowing the exact fingerprint that makes it unique to all others.

First of all, as a rather sensitive impressionable kid, if someone had told me I had a disability, it would have become so psychologically. Because I had no idea I was "disabled," I was operating with the only thing I knew which was scraping a needle over a piece of vinyl. When slowing down a record, I am matching whether not the the slowed down arpeggio sequence is the same as one I am repetitively copying to my banjo. On a subconscious level, there is no other method for me at age 14. There's no visual input, no teacher and no "lyrical" entrance into the learning process. By lyrical, I mean nobody actually sings the notes of bluegrass banjo. Just go ahead and try it sometime. Wide repetitive arpeggiation in thirds is not an easy song to sing. It's not like mastering "Carnival of Venice" on a trumpet.

Fast arpeggiated bluegrass banjo is stylistically tied to the instrument as an invention. To learn it by ear means that you are taking in recognizable "chunks" rather than individual tablature notes. Yet, the individual notes make up those chunks.

The reason I have now been searching for the most simple direct way of teaching is because at the time I learned, I had no other experience, visual or conceptual, to compare it to. Furthermore, I'm not so sure I will ever know how a person weeds through and coordinates all the separate elements of the the left hand, the right hand, the tablature symbols, the fostering of pitch discrimination, the breaking up of time into equal segments, etc... To try and put all these things together at once as a beginner is certainly daunting. I honestly cannot remember what learning was like. I just remember the consuming compulsion to copy. I almost didn't finish high school.

I feel like I was blind in the beginning and didn't know it.  All I could do was hear. And in a way, I am still blind. I'm coming to the conclusion that I can't teach anymore.

Pat-

Edited by - banjola1 on 09/02/2021 07:57:21

Sep 2, 2021 - 8:08:57 AM
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3910 posts since 3/28/2008

Thanks for the detailed response, pmartin9363 . The "auditory processing issues" sound edpecially thorny to me, from my perspective as a teacher. If you were a student of mine, I'd feel I'd have to read up a lot on these things so as not to waste your time. (I'd probably also want to talk to my sister-in-law, a Ph.D. psychologist who has herself suffered from dyslexia, but if I did that too much, she might start charging me for the calls!)

Good luck, and post more about this if you find a suitable teacher, or gain any insights that might help you in your banjo journey.

Sep 2, 2021 - 8:11:38 AM
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34 posts since 3/14/2020

I am not sure if a teacher would have a lot of luck, or success, trying to help a students learn that has dyslexia beyond a lot of trial and error. Especially if the dyslexia was severe. I have done a bit of research, and it appears that there has been almost no research how dyslexia affects learning music. For me, I am learning that I really need to really break down every measure, and much sure that I am actually playing it as presented.

Edited by - pmartin9363 on 09/02/2021 08:12:16

Sep 2, 2021 - 4:01:10 PM

12281 posts since 6/2/2008
Online Now

quote:
Originally posted by pmartin9363

For me, I am learning that I really need to really break down every measure, and much sure that I am actually playing it as presented.


That's actually a good approach for anyone.

Sep 2, 2021 - 8:18:53 PM
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6265 posts since 10/13/2007

Ahhh, (as fig would say), I may be waddin' into something which at worst case scenario, I know nothing and at best case scenario it is over my head.
But.... is it best to know how to teach something or is it best to be able to show how to learn?
ken
ps: one of the best tennis lessons I ever saw taught was by a Brazilian who spoke Portugues and no English to an American who spoke only English. He knew the spins the guy wanted to learn and then showed him the way the wrist and hand moved. The Brazilian could speak only 3 words of English. 1. Yes 2. No 3 Look. When the guy got it, the Brazilian said "tabom" (its good). I can still see the hand and forearm motions and that was near 50 years ago.

Sep 8, 2021 - 9:48:11 PM
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24 posts since 11/23/2019

I have dyslexia . I was told ,and tested as a kid. It does make learning some things more difficult for sure . It just means you have to work harder at it , or find a different way of learning it that works for you. Try different methods of learning , and different types of media.

Edited by - Surfbrah on 09/08/2021 21:49:19

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