play by ear

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Posted by Bill on March 27, 2002 at 20:58:23:

In Reply to: DOES ANYONE DO THIS?? AND IF SO, HOW?? posted by Jeff on March 26, 2002 at 09:42:06:

: I sometimes hear about people playing music "by ear". How do they do this? Are they familiar with all the various musical notes or something? When I hear about people doing this, I think of when you're just doing the "do ah didi dums" in your head to a song, and are able to put that into musical notes or tabs or whatever? Am I right? Or way off? How can I learn to do this? Is there any good websites or software?


Big question! Playing by ear comes with knowing your instrument... An experienced (or gifted) player can play by ear. The beginner need tabs and an instructor.. Sometimes just a little hint, or hearing someone live is enough for the "instructor" part. Like walking, you've got to start and you will fall. I started playing harmonica in college (1982) when I heard "Bro" play some Blues Brothers stuff in a "welcome Freshman" show! "Cool" I thought. I had some musical knowledge (played guitar) and said to myself... 10 holes, blow or hard can it be?... It's 20 yrs later and I'm still learning how to play!

So do what you can, perfect it, even if it's Oh Susanna. Seek out other players, listen to players, experiment with your harmonica. This is why it's pocket sized.... keep it with you at all times! You'll be suprised how short traffic lights really are!


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