Thursday, March 09, 2006

NAF Playing Tip #11 Exercise: Play & Repeat Pattern

This excercise is designed to help build your song composition muscles. While it is mechanical in nature, if you combine this exercise with last weeks tip on changing the tempo, emphasis and duration of individual notes, you will find that this is yet another technique in music discovery. Whenever I've lost my muse and I am trying to discover a new melody, I employ this technique to find new melody lines and song phrasings.


Play a phrase, and then try to repeat the phrase on a different part of the flute (using the same finger pattern), but start with a different note. You will find that it isn’t as easy as it sounds because this exercise forces your brain to play a pattern with a different set of fingers. It also forces your brain to store the pattern of notes relative to each other, which builds a very important musicianship muscle. If you master this technique, you will be well on your way to being able to play music by ear, and to be able to deconstruct songs that you hear other artists playing on a CD. This is also an excellent technique to employ when playing harmony.

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