An interesting and humbling experience

shadowtick

Member
Today i recorded myself for the first time, I played when I was younger, took about 25 years off and started playing again a year ago.

Recorded some rudiments first, and felt ok about what I heard

Then I played along to a drumless version of "September" by Earth Wind and Fire

The strange thing is that the groove felt good when I was playing it, but when listening objectively it was obvious that I was rushing in some places and dragging in others

Metronomes and a healthy dose of counting out loud are in my future........

It was humbling but fun.:)
 

Homeularis

Gold Member
I do the same thing. I also need alot of discipline on timing. Its really hard for me to play to music for some reason. I dont know if I am just not hearing it loud enough or what, and the same goes for metronomes.
 
Interesting.

PLaying with a metronome is difficult for me as well, especially when it comes to the feeling because you have to be precise.
 

Eman101

Member
I am going to record in 2 weeks with my band, and we've been rehearsing with a metronome to get comfortable with it before we actually enter the studio. The weird thing is, when playing live, we tend to make slight tempo changes (without realizing it) in different parts of the song, for different effects. So the middle, quieter part is slightly slower than the next, louder part. That's fine live, but when the click suddenly arrives, it all sounds horribly wrong!

Even for myself, I am spending my personal practice time just playing to a click as if I was doing 'the take'. And while most of it is OK, there are parts that I keep struggling with. Playing with a metronome is a tough but rewarding experience, provided you don't lose your cool and throw it in the bin.
 

Homeularis

Gold Member
Metronome or music, I keep falling out of sinc, especially after a fill.
I dont really know what to do. I guess just practice...practice...practice.
I have recorded without clicks with bands before and my timing sounds pretty good. Probably not by click standards but definately to the ear.
Clicks are frustrating and un fun for me.
 

MikeM

Platinum Member
It's been said on this forum many times and bears repeating that playing to a click is mostly a mental thing. What you need to do is consider it to be an additional band member that you play with; one with perfect timing, so relax and jam with that guy! Also, make sure you're not being too timid with the click volume in your headphones (but do wear earplugs). That way it won't "disappear" when you're sitting right on it. That can be unnerving and cause you to speed up or slow down until you hear it again adding to the frustration.
 

Frost

Silver Member
The hardest thing I find playing along to a metronome is still sounding natural, I find in order to keep time perfectly I often sound rigid, like a machine.
 

Wavelength

Platinum Member
Then I played along to a drumless version of "September" by Earth Wind and Fire

The strange thing is that the groove felt good when I was playing it, but when listening objectively it was obvious that I was rushing in some places and dragging in others.
Take a listen to the tempo of the original song in the beginning... then listen to the tempo again during the first chorus. You weren't the only one rushing. ;)
 

jer

Silver Member
Take a listen to the tempo of the original song in the beginning... then listen to the tempo again during the first chorus. You weren't the only one rushing. ;)
I wanted to suggest this as well. It's not hard to find older tunes that don't follow a consistent tempo.

Not to say you don't need be working with a metronome, just that you are probably doing better than you think you are!
 

Aeolian

Platinum Member
Metronome or music, I keep falling out of sinc, especially after a fill.
I dont really know what to do. I guess just practice...practice...practice.
Are you consistently coming out ahead? There is a natural inclination to rush a fill. It happens on other instruments too. Vic Wooten talks about this in his book. Your concentration leaves the song and goes to executing the fill, often with lots of energy devoted to it. Try to set some landmarks within the fill and concentrate on hitting them in the groove, just as you make a normal pattern groove.

Some years ago I got some great click advice from a local studio owner who used to play with Miles, and started out as a drummer before switching to guitar. Rather than try to play along with a cold 4 count click, set up a basic pattern on a drum machine. You can even use the offset or swing to get the kind of groove you are looking for. That will be much easier to follow or play along to since it already sounds like the song. Lots of big league folks do this. Create complete sequenced demos and then play over all the parts with real instruments, leaving the sequenced parts out of the final mix. Ocasionally, you hear part of the demo left in for effect. Like the second verse of Maroon 5's "This Love" where the first bar cuts out all the live instruments and you just hear a drum machine track. Miami Sound Machine was notorious for doing this. Occasionally releasing the sequenced demo tracks after the song became a hit as some sort of "remix". Making it sound like someone replaced all the playing with processed sounding synth parts, when those track were there all along. Just muted, or turned way down in the final mix.
 
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