Perfection or imperfection?

JimmyM

Gold Member
Check out the masters of deliberately playing just slightly behind the beat - J Dilla and Questlove who were doing it in hip hop and r&b/soul decades ago. Gives a real earthy and human element to what might otherwise feel robotic. Very hard to replicate.

That feel is technically imperfect but you can’t listen to the Roots or D’Angelo and not groove along to it.
Did not hurt that they had master bassists like Hub, Owen Biddle and Pino Palladino either ;)
 

cbphoto

Diamond Member
Check out the masters of deliberately playing just slightly behind the beat - J Dilla and Questlove who were doing it in hip hop and r&b/soul decades ago. Gives a real earthy and human element to what might otherwise feel robotic. Very hard to replicate.

That feel is technically imperfect but you can’t listen to the Roots or D’Angelo and not groove along to it.

 

jimb

Member
I'll take Keefs outta tune down tuned guitars anyday of the week over anything recorded to perfection, thats why I just love 70's recordings...there so vital and kinda live sounding.
However when it comes to vocals I can be up and down. Boy George sounds outta tune and it works beautifully...unique tambre, but someone who's set themesleves up as a performer then screws it, not so good, in fact cringeworthy in the extreme.
 

Xstr8edgtnrdrmrX

Platinum Member
I’m not seeing this thread that way. I just see a huge history of music where it wasn’t locked to a click track, and tempos didn’t line up perfectly with grids, and yet it sounded awesome anyway.

but there is a large demographic of players - in all instrument families - who think that they don't need to practice to be considered good...and they usually get pretty militant when they get called out for being wrong, or are asked to improve...and one of their defenses is always : "I don't want to be a robot man" or "faster playing/technique/ weird tempos are not musical man..." they are usually just being asked to play the right notes/feel/phrasing etc.

I think this thread is definitely referencing that group
 

JimmyM

Gold Member
but there is a large demographic of players - in all instrument families - who think that they don't need to practice to be considered good...and they usually get pretty militant when they get called out for being wrong, or are asked to improve...and one of their defenses is always : "I don't want to be a robot man" or "faster playing/technique/ weird tempos are not musical man..." they are usually just being asked to play the right notes/feel/phrasing etc.

I think this thread is definitely referencing that group
If that’s the case, then I couldn’t agree more. And what galls me the most is when someone uses a super famous player like Ringo as a reason not to practice. Those people don’t seem to get it that they are not Ringo.
 

Xstr8edgtnrdrmrX

Platinum Member
If that’s the case, then I couldn’t agree more. And what galls me the most is when someone uses a super famous player like Ringo as a reason not to practice. Those people don’t seem to get it that they are not Ringo.

yeah....and that Ringo did practice

but the whole thing of "people not getting it" seems to be a huge issue in the world of amateur music playing...pretty much on a weekly basis, I am facepalming as some pinhead is at a gig, or a store spouting stuff about drumming (or bass playing, or guitar playing, or sound engineering etc) that is just wrong...sadly wrong.
 

Hypercaffium

Active Member
Imho you should always aim for "perfection", knowing that you're a human and you'll never be perfect.
 

Woolwich

Silver Member
I was in a band where the singer pointed out to one of the guitarists that he was playing the wrong chord as the whole band kicked in after a quiet breakdown. The reason the guitarist gave was that he couldn't get his hand into the correct chord position as well as jumping in the air to do a half baked mid air splits.....so the attention seeking jump in the air stayed and he continued to play a chord that was close but not the right one.
Notice this post is written in the past tense
 

AzHeat

Platinum Member
I was in a band where the singer pointed out to one of the guitarists that he was playing the wrong chord as the whole band kicked in after a quiet breakdown. The reason the guitarist gave was that he couldn't get his hand into the correct chord position as well as jumping in the air to do a half baked mid air splits.....so the attention seeking jump in the air stayed and he continued to play a chord that was close but not the right one.
Notice this post is written in the past tense
the band I was referring to is also in the past tense, because as long as the band leader didn’t play, the rest of the band sounded “OK!” There was hope for some level of correct playing, but it was his band and he wasn’t having it. He played as sloppy as it came and wrong cords were just a part of his “expression.“ It’s still his band, but all members are different. They have gone through members as often as a hooker but somehow the band books gigs and keeps going.

I’ve never understood how this has worked. Maybe others just don’t care enough and music is just music, but it’s nails on a chalkboard for me.
 

someguy01

Platinum Member
Perfect imperfection.
 

Anon La Ply

Renegade
I'm not sure I've ever achieved perfection in anything, or would even know how to recognise it even if I did.

All hail the return of The artist previously known as Pollyanna! 🙌
Yep, but it doesn't stop us stealing whatever we can from the pros.

Playing with a machine on tracks like Cyborg World was interesting. Even more interesting was mixing afterwards and having to fix so, so many flams. And manually in Audacity, so each one of them hurt (but at least there's no quantising glitches).

I felt dishonest, fixing things to sound as though my time wasn't dicey, but the tracks deserved a clean backbeat, not sloppy flams.

For the record, in that one I remember going for a Bernard Purdie kind of feel - Bernard Purdie with crap time :LOL: :ROFLMAO:
 

doggyd69b

Well-known Member
but there is a large demographic of players - in all instrument families - who think that they don't need to practice to be considered good...and they usually get pretty militant when they get called out for being wrong, or are asked to improve...and one of their defenses is always : "I don't want to be a robot man" or "faster playing/technique/ weird tempos are not musical man..." they are usually just being asked to play the right notes/feel/phrasing etc.

I think this thread is definitely referencing that group
I guess this has to be viewed in context. For example if you teach, you want your students to practice and to do it correctly (using a metronome in some or most cases).
In another situation where the band (or orchestra) has multiple musicians, it becomes vital to have more precise timing as that keeps everything together. In a smaller band (bass, one guitar, drums) it may not be that important (see for example the White Stripes) Meg White never played with a metronome and it shows, but the music didn't suffer (not my cup of tea) but it made them famous, and you can really hear the tempo variations when the song got more aggressive. Now if you think about it, if Megan White had the precision of Jonathan Mofett when she played those songs, would those songs be just boring?? (I think so) I think the songs needed the speed changes to convey the emotion, had they stayed metronome precise they would have been stiffled... I am not against practicing I am against chasing perfection for the sake of being "better than everyone else" I listen to and play music because the emotions involved, when music becomes dehumanized (Perfectly timed beat sequencer such as in regatton) (which is garbage to me) then it feels forced, the emotion is removed and it is just like a sales pitch to like something that someone else thinks you should like and not because it naturally appealed to you. But I guess that were most people are when it comes to practicing, also we see perfection as different things, for some it may be to be able to play something and not hit a single wrong note, for others it may be that PLUS being metronome perfect, for others it may just be play to serve the music, and for others nail it in the first take.
 

GetAgrippa

Diamond Member
What's is "perfection"-it's subjective so really is a deception of goals we want to attain given our ideal of that condition. Metronomic is perfect sometimes-but others slightly ahead or behind is perfect. I work on stuff for months for my ideal of an outcome-it's my perfect goal though I know it's not perfect-it's my illusion. It's like me saying "blue eyes" are perfect-well maybe in color that more people may prefer (I doubt it though) but biologically it's from a mutation that you don't produce brown pigment-they aren't even really blue-as in by a pigment-but only because blue light is reflected. So heck no -they are perfect LOL.
 

SmoothOperator

Gold Member
Exactly.

I like a song because it's a good song... not because it was played well. I appreciate the performance, production, etc. but I hear past those things.

So if a song appeals to me, it's because it was a well-written piece, period. There are some pretty rough (older) recordings and performances of songs that I just love. And there are recordings with amazing performances, that I find unlistenable. That is, I don't like the song no matter how well it's executed.

I think the line of thinking today is get a drum machine, put a boom bap on, rap your song over it. Don't need to be perfect.

I'd have to say with modern recording, there is very little excuse for not having it perfect, or at the very least any which way you want it. Seriously, have you seen what they can do with time stretching. It's like three clicks of the button, find the transients, add stretch markers, adjust to your taste.

The problem being not whether it is perfect or not, but how do you want it?

Only thing remaining is the recording quality, but even that ClarityVx can pretty much perfectly clean a vocal, from just about any noise. Through with a decent room denoiser, off to the races.

So I don't think there is really any excuse not to have the precise sound you want, whatever that is.
 

jda

Active Member
can humans even recognize perfection.
capable/of it.


which one's perfect
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Asymmetrical vs Symmetrical




~
human's can't concieve perfectionm
not in our realm
other than that have a Nice day.
 
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