is counting really worth it?


Platinum Member
if i am learning something new and it is troubling me then i might count.
if i am playing live then i generally never do. i'm usually doing backing vocals so whilst counting 1,2,3,4 may be good for some styles it might prove annoying.


Senior Member
when you are learning polyrhythms you will definitely have to start counting, that is if you want subdivide them. you may be able to get away with not counting quarter note triplets while subdividing them just because theyre the naturally most felt polyrhythms, but the more complicated rhythms you subdivide over them it may be easier. for example if you subdivided two quarter note triplets into seven eighth note septuplets, itd be helpful. then when subdividing quarter note quintuplets, i dont have to count, but if i subdivide something a bit more complex like quarter note septuplets, i cant even do it under my breath, i HAVE to count louder than my playing. this helps because you establish the counter rhythm so you can hear that steady pulse and temporarily ignore the actually quarter note pulse enabling you to more easily subdivide the polyrhythm...


well I started practicing while counting....

i think it helps in a sense that I now know how to count while playing with my band, as far as everyday practicing though i still prefer the click, though i count with it now.

i am enjoying the ability to be able to make use of it in jamming situations, especially when switching from one beat the another, it makes the transition smoother.

Swiss Matthias

Platinum Member
The click can confuse and distract me too but I have learned that if I get off beat, usually after a transition or fill, it allows me to get back on track MUCH quicker than without it.
This can be dangerous: If you get off beat without the click, you and the band will be moving on from this "new point" as if nothing happened.
But if you're playing to the metronome, and then lose the time for a moment, and as you realize go "back" to it, you actually lose the beat again!! For the listener there is only one flaw in the time, as you get a little faster or slower, only if you try to go back to the metronome there will be a second flaw in time! In fact you should adjust the metronome to the new beat! Going back to the metronome is an unnatural thing to do.

Since I've realized that in my practice room I always let the metronome start over in my new time if I lost track somewhere. Going back to the metronome would be a very unnatural and artificial thing to do.