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Thread: Lesson Last Night/Learning Songs

  1. #1

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    Default Lesson Last Night/Learning Songs

    Last night my teacher and I started “Susan’s Playlist”; it contains about 30 songs, from AC/DC to Led Zeppelin to Tom Petty. Anyway, what he wants me to do is listen to the songs and chart them. He doesn’t want me to just listen to a song piece by piece and then try to play it; he wants me to try writing it out. He also told me that learning a song is not only about listening to the drums; you also need to listen to the melody and the lyrics as well. The first song that he wants me to start listening to is Free Fallin’ by Tom Petty. This seems like a fairly easy song but I have to be honest, I’m a bit intimidated about learning songs since I’ve never done it before. All I’ve ever really done is listen to a song and then say to myself “there is no way I can learn that.” So please give me some hints and ideas that you may personally use when learning a song. I don’t want to cheat and look up the tabs, I want to learn it exactly how my teacher wants me to.

  2. #2

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    DC, that is a great method!!!
    I would say learn the form. ex. AABA verse=A chorus=B. A lot of Beatles songs were that way.
    Once you have that, you can chart them as a skeleton, then adding intros, bridges, and segues.
    I hope this offers you some insight. I am sure there will be some GREAT replies to help you!!!

  3. #3

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    Good way to learn, seems like your instructor wants you to learn the right way so that you are better then folks like me Have fun and enjoy!

  4. #4

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    DC, the only hint I can give you is the one I've given to Wyatt when he's been nervous about performing: you have complete freedom to suck. Now, I know you're going "what?!", but hear me out. Don't worry about doing it right. Take the instruction you've been given and your own skill and talent and just go for it. If you totally flub it up, it's your teacher's job to show you how to improve. But don't let the fear of flubbing up stop you from fearlessly attacking your assignment. Go for it!

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roaddebris View Post
    you have complete freedom to suck.
    Sig worthy!!

    But really, great advice all around...keep at it, it will open new doors for you before you know it!!
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  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roaddebris View Post
    you have complete freedom to suck.....
    That is exactly what my teacher said LOL!

    Thanks for reiterating it and..... I am putting it in my signature line

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    Quote Originally Posted by drum_chick View Post
    That is exactly what my teacher said LOL!

    Thanks for reiterating it and..... I am putting it in my signature line

    It's fun to watch somebody who's been playing timidly turn around and go at it like a hungry lion. Yeah, they may still make mistakes, but they make them boldly.

  8. #8

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    Excellent DC! This shows just how good your teacher really is. I am impressed that you are moving on to Susan's Playlist, and as has already been said, just have fun with it. You're not getting a grade for this, and the world won't end tommorrow if you are not perfect with it. As a matter of fact, I am sure your teacher won't expect you to be perfect. Hey, I rapidly exhale backward all the time, and I'm happy about it!
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  9. #9

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    Not to mention, that learning songs by listening to them is, in many ways, the best way. It's the only way I learn songs. It's funny because the bassist and rhythm guitarist in my band look up tabs. The lead guitarist refuses! He listens to the song to learn them (which I think is harder on guitar).

    Your teacher has the right idea. While it's fine to have someone show parts of a song you can't figure out, learning by listening starts to get you focused on the drums in songs and how they fit into the overall composition. My son has been playing for a few years, and once he realized he can just sit and try, he's improved greatly.

    The last thing I'll add is that you'd be surprised how easy some songs are, and how some songs are much more complicated than it seems at first.
    Jesse

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  10. #10

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    OK, heres my tip.

    # 1.) Tell your teacher hes going to get fired unless he gives you some country music to listen to instead of that devil music .

    #2. ) I agree with RD , go for it and dont worry about how its written . Listen to the tune and just feel the groove. Good luck .

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by kaosotis View Post
    The last thing I'll add is that you'd be surprised how easy some songs are, and how some songs are much more complicated than it seems at first.
    Ain't that the truth though? A lot of songs that I thought would be impossible at my current level turned out to be pretty simple, then others are surprisingly complex. One example of the former was Metallica's Enter Sandman. I thought, no way I could do a Lars song, but once I sat down and looked at it, it was a fairly simple song.
    Robert

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  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by LagerHead View Post
    Ain't that the truth though? A lot of songs that I thought would be impossible at my current level turned out to be pretty simple, then others are surprisingly complex. One example of the former was Metallica's Enter Sandman. I thought, no way I could do a Lars song, but once I sat down and looked at it, it was a fairly simple song.
    Enter Sandman isn't that hard. In fact a lot of Metallica is just fast double bass, and not a lot more.

    Good example of a surprisingly hard song, Rosanna by Toto. Dummerworld.com has a video of Jeff Porcaro explaining the shuffle beat, and it's certainly a lot harder than Enter Sandman.

    I find that when you really see some people play these songs, you realize there are a lot of ghost beats in songs that are hard to hear and hard to play.
    Jesse

    1986 Tama Crestar - Lacquered Piano White
    2016 Roland TD-25K
    2015 Tama Starclassic B/B - Indigo Blue Sparkle

  13. #13

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    Hi.

    Don't know if this will be of any use to you, but I've just joined a new band, after an 8 year layoff, and had lots of new songs to learn.

    Below are a couple of charts I've jotted out to help me. NOTE. These are purely for my own use, they would be a LOT neater if they were intended for anyone else to read!

    This is the first one. Addicted to Love. It's a song I've played before, so just wanted this to remind me of the format. Also, once I've got this, if the band does it differently to the original, I can make REALLY rapid adjustments and not have to rely on my dodgy memory throughout the rehearsal.



    The second one. Cocaine By Eric Clapton. Never played it before, so had to make a more detailed chart with the basic Rhythm and fills and Phrasing.



    Obviously, this is just for rehearsal purposes, I have most of the songs memorized by now, and aim to not have music onstage when we gig. The big advantage to this is that we can rehearse really fast as a group, and the other guys don't have to wait as I learn songs for us to practice them properly

    Cheers


    Andy

    PS Feel free to download these and play with the image if it's not clear enough.

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