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trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

How important is timing and metronom... 

Hi Guys,

I have a classical guitar background, its engrained in my brain since i was 7, i played for around 6 years. Im getting back into it, classical that is and specifically flamenco. I rarely used a metronome while learning classical, in fact, i left on RCM level 3 when i was younger and stopped playing, and not once have i ever used a metronome in any of my exams. Typically the metronome was used as reference for a few minutes with my teacher, either to polish up the song once learnt, or while learning the song.

Im taking a module based program btw, i cannot commit to in person lessons right now. At any rate, im using the metronome in the same way i was taught years ago with classical. Essentially, to clean up irregularities and get the timing 'close enough' by using the metronome to polish up the piece, or in this case one full compas.

Is there anything wrong in my approach, given that its flamenco? My goal is play for solo guitar and not with dancers or other players. I would imagine the more i learn and the more comfortable i get with the guitar, if there was a small sliver of a chance i wanted to play with others or for dancers, i would have to cleanup all my pieces and get the timing perfect. That said and if that was the case, im hoping that with a few years of flamenco under my belt it would be easier to do than, than it is now.

Using a metronome exclusively, meaning other than just for reference and to get the timing 'close enough' by ear, is stressful and really takes the musical fun out of it.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 25 2022 17:22:22
 
Mark2

Posts: 1696
Joined: Jul. 12 2004
From: San Francisco

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your point of view, accuracy in rhythm is critical. The metronome helps develop it. Close enough isn't good enough. It needs to be dead on.

Classical guitarists sometimes compromise this in order to produce a better tone but flamencos don't. It's better to flub a note than to lose the rhythm.

Rhythm is king. And once you have the ability to play with accurate rhythm, be it with a metronome or other people, it's way more fun and liberating.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 25 2022 18:34:58
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to Mark2

That sucks, rhythm is my weakest point and it seems impossible to be 100% perfect. Why does it have to be precise though? Why cant it be more like classical guitar if you only intend to play solo guitar without others? I mean you are playing within the flamenco 12 beat structure that makes it flamenco. I feel like a strict rhythm takes away from the music. Obviously im opening a can of worms, but i really want to know why. I feel like my time right now is better spent just learning falsetas and securing techniques which is hard enough on its own. Perhaps i can come back to getting the rhythm perfected in a year or two when my skill goes up?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 25 2022 21:18:26
 
xirdneH_imiJ

Posts: 1789
Joined: Dec. 2 2006
From: Budapest, now in Southampton

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

In some palos of flamenco you can get away with "stretching" the compás, like seguiriya or soleá, but rhythm is essential to flamenco mainly because it's a genre that's built on interaction with others - and you're following the same rhythm. Plus what makes flamenco what it is is the "flow" it creates through maintaining rhythm. Imagine a pop song not being rhythmically spot on and you'll see what we mean here.
Obviously if you're not planning to play with / for others you do whatever you want, but if you want to be correct flamenco-istically, then you have no choice but follow the compás. Using a metronome will help you in that sense and will also improve your general playing.

Ps: getting back to rhythm wouldn't really work because in flamenco we tend to teach technique and material in a rhythmic context from the start. But maybe a teacher can correct me if I'm wrong.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 25 2022 22:24:46
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3308
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

quote:

That sucks, rhythm is my weakest point and it seems impossible to be 100% perfect. Why does it have to be precise though? Why cant it be more like classical guitar if you only intend to play solo guitar without others? I mean you are playing within the flamenco 12 beat structure that makes it flamenco. I feel like a strict rhythm takes away from the music. Obviously im opening a can of worms, but i really want to know why. I feel like my time right now is better spent just learning falsetas and securing techniques which is hard enough on its own. Perhaps i can come back to getting the rhythm perfected in a year or two when my skill goes up?


What I don't understand is your initial post describes your aversion to the metronome and working on rhythm while at the same time requesting advice and opinion from Foro members on the subject. Having received feedback from members, you restate your aversion to working on rhythm and openly resist their suggestions.

Why request feedback on your position if you are going to continue to resist the feedback? More importantly, in my opinion, is you state rhythm is your weakest point. It has been my experience, in any endeavor one is attempting to master, that it is essential to work hardest on those aspects in which one is most deficient. It is often frustrating when one doesn't seem to be making headway, but just as often a breakthrough eventually occurs and a higher level is reached. If you are serious about playing flamenco, you should seriously work on rhythm.

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 25 2022 22:55:37
 
Piwin

Posts: 3394
Joined: Feb. 9 2016
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

quote:

rhythm is my weakest point


All the more reason to start working on it now. It's not going to get any easier. And it can turn into a vicious cycle: I'm no good at X so I prefer to avoid it. I've been avoiding X so I'm still no good at it. Repeat ad infinitum.

quote:

Why cant it be more like classical guitar if you only intend to play solo guitar without others?


Because you won't sound like a flamenco guitarist. You'll sound like a classical guitarist trying to play solo flamenco.

ps: welcome to the foro!

_____________________________

"Anything you do can be fixed. What you cannot fix is the perfection of a blank page. What you cannot fix is that pristine, unsullied whiteness of a screen or a page with nothing on it—because there’s nothing there to fix."
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 25 2022 23:03:03
 
Mark2

Posts: 1696
Joined: Jul. 12 2004
From: San Francisco

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

The tempo can fluctuate when you are playing solo, but you should be able to play to a metronome before you do that. The compas can be broken in some forms, as Jimi indicated but that will only sound correct if you can play in compas, because only then will you know WHEN you can break it. Part of being able to play in compas means you can play at an even tempo. A lot of flamenco records have compas (palmas, cajon, etc). Do you feel it takes away from the music?

I remember when I was learning to play bulerias-I learned a bunch of falsetas but really couldn't play them all in compas. When that was pointed out to me, I realized that everything I played had to be hammered into compas. Everything-falsetas, cortes, everything. Don't neglect this now, or you'll have to re-learn everything. Work on simple stuff, but in perfect rhythm. Nothing worse than to hear someone playing difficult stuff out of compas.


quote:

ORIGINAL: trivium91

That sucks, rhythm is my weakest point and it seems impossible to be 100% perfect. Why does it have to be precise though? Why cant it be more like classical guitar if you only intend to play solo guitar without others? I mean you are playing within the flamenco 12 beat structure that makes it flamenco. I feel like a strict rhythm takes away from the music. Obviously im opening a can of worms, but i really want to know why. I feel like my time right now is better spent just learning falsetas and securing techniques which is hard enough on its own. Perhaps i can come back to getting the rhythm perfected in a year or two when my skill goes up?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 0:07:50
 
devilhand

 

Posts: 1153
Joined: Oct. 15 2019
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

The ultimate goal is to improve your inner pulse. It's not that hard to keep steady pulse. But don't underestimate it. You need to practice it with metronome.
You can read about how to practice with metronome in this thread.

http://www.foroflamenco.com/tm.asp?m=339048&p=1&tmode=1&smode=1

quote:

Using a metronome exclusively, meaning other than just for reference and to get the timing 'close enough' by ear, is stressful and really takes the musical fun out of it.

No need to use metronome all the time. Replace it with foot tapping and rely on your inner pulse. Metronome is just a tool for improving your inner pulse.

quote:

That sucks, rhythm is my weakest point

Learn the (basic) rhythm patterns of each palo and broaden your falseta repertoire. For that one should listen to guitar accompaniment of flamenco cante a lot and obviously learn new falsetas. Not to solo flamenco guitar. One has to learn to walk first before one can run.

_____________________________

Say No to Fuera de Compás!!!
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 0:39:38
 
Ricardo

Posts: 13336
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

quote:

That sucks, rhythm is my weakest point and it seems impossible to be 100% perfect. Why does it have to be precise though? Why cant it be more like classical guitar if you only intend to play solo guitar without others? I mean you are playing within the flamenco 12 beat structure that makes it flamenco. I feel like a strict rhythm takes away from the music. Obviously im opening a can of worms, but i really want to know why. I feel like my time right now is better spent just learning falsetas and securing techniques which is hard enough on its own. Perhaps i can come back to getting the rhythm perfected in a year or two when my skill goes up?


These are actually huge obstacles. You already seem to KNOW the answer and want to know if we can pat you on the back and say “sure man, close is good enough in horse shoes and hand grenades…and YOUR solo playing.”. If you want that type of feedback, you got it. Go for it dude, have fun, enjoy the ride. But what your GUT is actually telling you is the CORRECT thing. Being stressed with a simple machine keeping time, causing your music to “lose feeling” and whatever other excuses you can come up with, is no good, and you actually know it deep down.

Fortunately you are not alone, the struggle is real. Paco de Lucía kept a metronome in his guitar case so he could be honest with himself and stay on top of his game and encouraged the great Farruco’s grandson (flamenco dancer) to do the same. The work never ends, listen to your gut and start working NOW.

If you want to know about “feel” and such that we call soniquete, there is this thing called “micro timing” where you learn how to keep that steady groove and control the subdivisions in a way that you are never stiff….in fact you can actually make a set tempo “sound faster” or “sound slower” and it all about the feeling you express through the subdivisions and dynamics. But if you are uncomfortable with a metronome in general, you are at level 1.

Here is a good video you can see how to use the metronome fast at first and develop a groove that YOU control relative TO the click. The slower the click, the more advanced you get. This goes for everybody, there is no magic path. Flamenco, Bach, Sor, Rock, funk, it doesn’t really matter the musical style. Classical musicians that shy away from metronomes…sorry, we (that work with it always) can tell.



Next thing is using your foot and metronome. If you need the tempo to shift while your are learning, you can use the foot to keep track of the beat feeling at least so when you increase tempo of the music or use metronome or palmas, you are locked in. In fact if you learn in the “classical” way and then try hit or miss, you end up having to UNLEARN a lot of the material, or worse, get it STUCK in your head on the wrong track. So here is how I learn new music. It seems tedious but in the long run you are SAVING TIME having to unlearn wrong rhythms etc. Here I got this thing functional, even if not performance ready, in 8 minutes only. (Yes I am actually learning it in this video).



_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 1:19:21
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

Alright fair enough guys, you have me convinced. The deeper and deeper I go into this, I’m finding that I may have to drop classical guitar all together, since I’ve been playing both. I only have a 45-60 minutes a day to practise, therefore I find I’m obviously going to have to put more work into rythym. I guess this is why very few people actually play both well? I did play with a metronome tonight and it was frustrating, let alone play the entire song. I’ll check out some of the videos posted here for tips. That said, I’ve been using a metronome app in 3/4 time with the accent on the third beat, which is a bit challenging. If I miss one beat, I’m basically forced to stop and try again as you have to wait several seconds for the 3 beat cycle to finish. I just basically played the different parts separately and adjusted the note structure in the digital metronome.

Would you guys recommend a simple single click without any accents on the metronome? That way if I miss one it’s easy to continue playing and get back on track? The other challenge is the song I put together has triplets and 16th note arpeggios, i have been switching the metronome to click for the different eighth and sixteenth notes. Should I just be leaving the metronome
In quarter note mode and playing to that instead for the entire song?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 4:01:27
 
chester

Posts: 842
Joined: Oct. 29 2010
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

You need to learn how to feel a beat subdivided into 2, 3, and 4. ie 8th notes, triples, and sixteenths.

That's the minimum for any type of music you play. If you can't do that -- you're never going to sound good and that's the honest truth.

Just put a metronome on and play whatever against the beat. Start simple, don't rush into complicated rhythms until you can get something easy to sound good.

Stop cutting yourself slack and trying to convince yourself it's not important -- because it is.
Show me a respected musician that can't keep a beat.

quote:

why very few people actually play both well

I think you meant to say play EITHER well.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 5:46:31
 
ernandez R

Posts: 532
Joined: Mar. 25 2019
From: Alaska USA

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

Triv,

Welcolm. Been using a metranome forever, a few years ago went from classical to Flamenco, I'll never amount to much all things considered but I love the challenge.

But, you gotta beat the clicking beast, the basics will come fairly fast, just don't let it kick your ass!

Let's get real, you are really playing a Spanish guitar, that flamenco Vs Classical nonsense is just some buigwa ( f I wash I could spell) marketing crap fostered on us by those trying to sell the guitar to the wealthy... It's all tone, rythem, and yes, tempo. 4/4 or a 12 beat compas, it's just two ways to count and if you slow down some you'll find it's not that hard. Go easy on yourself you need a solid foundation 60bpm, and oh ya, it's harder to play well slow at first isn't it, all your flaws become obvious don't they. Don't get mad get even!

I played around with a few flamenco app metronome , they all have their flaws, the best one is the one you use. On the phone they really are not laud enough and I hate an earplug, I like to plug my phone into the stereo and play it at concert level so the metronome palmas sound like my buddies are atbthe table with me. I've got my old Wittner battery click box I keep on my music stand, oh look it's set at 63bpm.

So I'm playing this old piece from the Marin book circa 1912 or somthing like that, 3/4 and 6/8 with a twelfth note on the end of the 6/8 bar thought I had it down, that is until I fired up Wittner, she never lies, she told me, you have no compas, she told me it's time for 60bpm. Bitch!


HR

Oh, some how I missed Ricardo's post above, he is right on. So is everyone else on this thread, remember we may not be telling you what you want to hear but do is a favor, give it a try.

_____________________________

I prefer my flamenco guitar spicy,
doesn't have to be fast,
should have some meat on the bones,
can be raw or well done,
as long as it doesn't sound like it's turning green on an elevator floor.

www.instagram.com/threeriversguitars
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 6:39:06
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to chester

Yes that’s what I meant, it’s hard to reply on a 5” iPhone screen with a long thumb nail, lol. Maybe I should start again here, I feel like I managed to piss everyone off, now I have 10 members ganging up on me. Ok so you are basically saying that the metronome should be setup to a simple quarter beat click, than I have to feel the beat regardless of the note structure? Classical definitely seems to come to me easily, likely because I excel at patterns; it meshes with my personality. Is it possible to play both simultaneously? Can learning both compliment each other? Does it take a certain personality to play flamenco? I’m not sure if anyone is aware of MBTI brain functions, but many of the well known flamenco players seem to have similar dominate brain functions. On the flip side, take Ana Vidovic, she has the same MBTI type as me and she excels at classical guitar. I’m sure you have heard of her, she is basically right up there with John Williams.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 14:06:03
 
El Burdo

 

Posts: 598
Joined: Sep. 8 2011
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

Hi Trivium
[Edit: Maybe your latest post changes things and there might be some additional virtue in training with a click of some sort, but this is what I wrote earlier and decided not to send. Don't worry about the loud voices here, everyone's an expert :-).]

In your original post you refer to 'timing'. That could mean different things.

Mark2 says
quote:

...accuracy in rhythm is critical. The metronome helps develop it...

One needs to be able to play a 'rhythmic figure', a recognisable or repeated pattern, correctly at any tempo. That is how rhythm differs from tempo, the speed at which you play it, which I wonder you might mean?

If you HAVE a good sense of time, a metronome can help you get a grip on a musical fragment, as shown in the videos above by increasing the tempi at which you can play it, but it won't develop your internal rhythmic response in itself. However, playing music with others who are non-judgemental might reveal other mechanisms that enable you to fit in the groove with them no problem.

quote:

I feel like a strict rhythm takes away from the music

Do you mean 'strict tempo'? If so, I agree. I was analysing some Louis Prima. Throughout one (recorded) piece, his whole band sped up 10 bpm TOGETHER. I doubt the score included 'accelerando poco a poco a poco" across the whole piece. They just were in their collective groove and were listening to one another, making minor adjustments.

You need ears - witness any guitar accompanist playing siguiriyas and watching the singer closely. If you need training to listen to what is going on around you I doubt a metronome will fix that though I guess if you are not interested in accompanying it is less of a problem. The Music and not technology speaks to our human ability to be rhythmic. The same thing happens with Miles Davis and Charlie Parker, the tempos change (always UP by the way and generally in uptempo pieces). The excitement of the piece is in the flexible tempo - not the flexible rhythm. Modern commercial music is training us to accept mono-tempos, mono-mixes, mono-tunings - all, in my humble opinion, and after years of consideration, ****. Rick Beato is good on this aspect of modern music production. Adèle not using pitch correction for example and bringing so much more as a result.

Sn Devilhand says
quote:

The ultimate goal is to improve your inner pulse

Hmmm. You might improve your listening but I doubt you will be any more 'in the groove' after a year's worth of metronome torture than you would be without it. The magic combination of rhythmic, AND tempic (sic) control is marvellous and exciting and the stuff of people with a musical gift, not a metronome. Possibly you might discover, or reveal, your inner pulse but I don't think you can alter it.

So - use a metronome to practise rhyhmic figures but don't sweat the tempi. Play with others who are not critical but who are engaged with you on a collective endeavour. You can play Classical guitar without much attention to sustained tempi but again, the rhythmic figures will have to be correct. But ditch it anyway .
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 14:35:12
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to El Burdo

@El Burdo
Yes you are right, i guess i should clarify my understanding that rythym, which is required for flamenco and classical, is different than tempo. Its just that in classical you feel like you are not held to the bondages of tempo, likely because you are playing solo. I feel torn on which style to pursue since i like both, yet i fear i may not have what it takes for flamenco. I had that thought in the beginning with the golpe and the 8-step rumba strum which were both really hard to learn, but i managed to get fairly proficient at it in a short amount of time. Its at that point where i committed myself to having the confidence and competence to work through these obstacles. I hate to say it but im less of a fan of Paco and more of a fan of Vicente, his music seems more emotional. I could also see myself being interested in Pepe Romero's style, which many would argue is technically inferior to Paco, since Romero really is a classical guitarist.

Some background though, the love of flamenco music is what brought me back into guitar in the first place. I stopped taking classical lessons years ago as a kid, i had different interests at that time, like video games i guess. Since i've started again, every day at the beginning of December, i somehow managed to learn half a dozen of intermediate classical songs while learning these flamenco techniques, the left hand finger patterns just seem to come naturally to me. This likely isn't a surprise to me though, as the way my brain works is specifically in recognizing patterns and intuitively knowing what comes next...this is pretty much in all facets of life, Guitar being no exception. In fact, mental practicing for me is super easy as i break it down into patterns. Its the technical (tempo & speed) and hand coordination aspect that needs the most work. Im not sure if having a brain that recognizes patterns first and foremost puts me at an advantage or a disadvantage when it comes to flamenco. I can say it definitely helps with learning new songs. I even lay down in bed at night and have 'Aha' moments of notes on the fretboard and figured out the song when i least expected it.

At the end of the day though, the draw to flamenco is because I just really like the soul, passion and dissonance in the music. Its also more expressive and artistic than classical.

Perhaps i just need to continue learning flamenco and incorporating the clicker like i did last night, with a healthy dose of classical injected on the side, than check back in a year. I just dont want to have to drop flamenco in favor of classical in a year and find out i wasted my time, because it just cant play it for example. Afterall, flamenco is what inspired me to get back into guitar in the first place. Im taking LAGA modules online BTW, my goal is when done in a few years to find a teacher via Skype as its unlikely there is one in my area (Canada)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 15:33:09
 
Mark2

Posts: 1696
Joined: Jul. 12 2004
From: San Francisco

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

Just a few thoughts-Vicente is a master of rhythmic control. When you study his music, even something seemingly simple like tres notas you'll discover the level of accuracy he has.

Good groove doesn't require that everything be played at an exact tempo. I think it's more like a heartbeat as opposed to a machine, but being able to groove to the machine is, I think, a vital skill.

I've been studying flamenco a long time, and recently learned a new falseta. For the first week, my fingers couldn't even hold the first shape and make a clear sound. Two weeks later I was playing the falseta in compas. It might take a few more months before I can play it cleanly most everytime. I've already been working on this 30 seconds of music for two months. Some of this stuff is very difficult.

Study the style of music you love, regardless of if you think you'll not be able to play it -after a time you will likely find you can in fact play it.




quote:

ORIGINAL: trivium91

@El Burdo
Yes you are right, i guess i should clarify my understanding that rythym, which is required for flamenco and classical, is different than tempo. Its just that in classical you feel like you are not held to the bondages of tempo, likely because you are playing solo. I feel torn on which style to pursue since i like both, yet i fear i may not have what it takes for flamenco. I had that thought in the beginning with the golpe and the 8-step rumba strum which were both really hard to learn, but i managed to get fairly proficient at it in a short amount of time. Its at that point where i committed myself to having the confidence and competence to work through these obstacles. I hate to say it but im less of a fan of Paco and more of a fan of Vicente, his music seems more emotional. I could also see myself being interested in Pepe Romero's style, which many would argue is technically inferior to Paco, since Romero really is a classical guitarist.

Some background though, the love of flamenco music is what brought me back into guitar in the first place. I stopped taking classical lessons years ago as a kid, i had different interests at that time, like video games i guess. Since i've started again, every day at the beginning of December, i somehow managed to learn half a dozen of intermediate classical songs while learning these flamenco techniques, the left hand finger patterns just seem to come naturally to me. This likely isn't a surprise to me though, as the way my brain works is specifically in recognizing patterns and intuitively knowing what comes next...this is pretty much in all facets of life, Guitar being no exception. In fact, mental practicing for me is super easy as i break it down into patterns. Its the technical (tempo & speed) and hand coordination aspect that needs the most work. Im not sure if having a brain that recognizes patterns first and foremost puts me at an advantage or a disadvantage when it comes to flamenco. I can say it definitely helps with learning new songs. I even lay down in bed at night and have 'Aha' moments of notes on the fretboard and figured out the song when i least expected it.

At the end of the day though, the draw to flamenco is because I just really like the soul, passion and dissonance in the music. Its also more expressive and artistic than classical.

Perhaps i just need to continue learning flamenco and incorporating the clicker like i did last night, with a healthy dose of classical injected on the side, than check back in a year. I just dont want to have to drop flamenco in favor of classical in a year and find out i wasted my time, because it just cant play it for example. Afterall, flamenco is what inspired me to get back into guitar in the first place. Im taking LAGA modules online BTW, my goal is when done in a few years to find a teacher via Skype as its unlikely there is one in my area (Canada)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 18:27:50
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to Mark2

Good advice mark, i really needed that. I find flamenco more interesting to listen to compared to classical guitar, its certainly more unique in canada…true flamenco anyways. I listen to classical music but more chamber classical or orchestra compared to just classical guitar.

I guess groove is more along the lines of playing within compas, and feeling the rhythm , bobbing the head, tapping the foot etc, rather than hitting every single note within the tempo next to the metronome…or at least based on my understanding on what everyone is saying. In your example of learning the new falseta you used, at what point would you try and play at a particularly tempo with a metronome? Would you always use a metronome in that example? When a piece is finished and put together with all the falsetas, should it always be practiced with a metronome, or there is a particularly point in the piece where you would remove the metronome, or not use it all the time?, other than when playing for others or a performance of course.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 19:24:34
 
Mark2

Posts: 1696
Joined: Jul. 12 2004
From: San Francisco

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

This particular falseta requires you to bar the second and third strings(B string and g string) but let the high E string ring open. So you have to bend your index so that you get a clean sound on the barred strings and still let the high E string ring.

That's hard enough but then it requires some stretches and pulloffs while holding the bar. Then a position change and grab the same bar lower on the neck. The right hand is doing arpeggio with P,M, and I, which I was weak at. I had to really practice the arpeggio itself to have any chance of playing the falseta.

Holding the bar and getting each note to ring was the hardest part for me. Took me days to develop the strength to do it and I'm still not able to do it every time.

I wasn't even worried about compas until I could get the notes to sound cleanly. Once I could do that I started zeroing in on the rhythmic details- where the phrases sit in the compas. At that point I used a metronome to make sure I understood and could play it the way it's supposed to fit. Slow, then faster, until I started making mistakes.

Then I played it a bunch without a metronome, making sure I really felt it the way it's supposed to be. From time to time, I found I was unsure of a small detail, like for example exactly how long is a rest. Deciding which device would I use(ghost note or glope for example) to make sure I was not entering the next phrase early.

I know there are guys who could just hear it once or twice, and play it right now. But that's life.

When I am ready to play a longer section of music I don't always use a metronome. I think if you are playing solea or solea por bulerias, alegrias, etc, you should be able to create the groove without it. But whenever I have a doubt, I turn it on. I also use it for exercises.



quote:

ORIGINAL: trivium91

Good advice mark, i really needed that. I find flamenco more interesting to listen to compared to classical guitar, its certainly more unique in canada…true flamenco anyways. I listen to classical music but more chamber classical or orchestra compared to just classical guitar.

I guess groove is more along the lines of playing within compas, and feeling the rhythm , bobbing the head, tapping the foot etc, rather than hitting every single note within the tempo next to the metronome…or at least based on my understanding on what everyone is saying. In your example of learning the new falseta you used, at what point would you try and play at a particularly tempo with a metronome? Would you always use a metronome in that example? When a piece is finished and put together with all the falsetas, should it always be practiced with a metronome, or there is a particularly point in the piece where you would remove the metronome, or not use it all the time?, other than when playing for others or a performance of course.

  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 20:11:17
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to Mark2

This has helped me immensely, i was basically given the initial impression that the metronome is the holy grail. Let’s be honest, i dont think anyone wants to practice with a metronome in 100% of their practice time. I was also under the impression that flamenco was more improv on the spot, or is a particular song more or less put together ahead of time? I guess working out how a falseta as you said, fits into the compas can really only be done ahead of time. So I’m not sure where the improv element fits in, i physically have to count 9 notes in a triplet beat cycle before hand to figure out how it will fit into the compas. That of course is a separate topic i suppose.

How you are using it sounds about how i would be using it, which is as a tool in order to develop better rhythm or groove as you mention and clean up a compas. While you say you dont use it all the time, i suppose if you wanted to play that piece with dancers for example, you would shift more practice time with that particular piece with a metronome. It seems that rythym or groove is something that needs to be developed by re-wiring the brain, the same way reading notes or learning golpe technique does. Based on that its safe to say that the metronome definitely is important to develop a sense of time and rhythm, but does not need to be used 100% of the time. Would it also be safe to say that no matter how well developed someone’s sense of timing and rhythm is, they will never play perfectly in tempo without the use of a metronome? I assume there will be minor timing mistakes, even when playing with others, either too slow or fast which is corrected on the fly?

On a side note, i suppose i can even practise some of my classical pieces with a metronome to help develop this sense of rythym, which would in turn help my flamenco, no?

“ I know there are guys who could just hear it once or twice, and play it right now. But that's life. ”

Also good advice you gave that we shoulnd’t compare ourselves to others.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 20:48:32
 
Mark2

Posts: 1696
Joined: Jul. 12 2004
From: San Francisco

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

If there was a falseta I had doubts about that was part of a dance routine I'd look at that with a metronome, but playing for a dancer is more about following them, which means you know how their steps fit into the compas. Same as learning a falseta, you learn how various steps fit. It's been a long time since I played for dance but I did it long enough that I feel I'd remember most of what was needed.

The dancer has the freedom to change the tempo, so you have to be comfortable with that more than playing to an exact tempo. Best way to learn to play for dance is to marry a good dancer. Short of that, playing for dance classes, which will do wonders for your compas and playing in general. Then playing for the teacher. It doesn't matter if you have perfect timing, you won't be able to play for baile until you've done it for a while and seen the basic steps, as well as whole routines many times.

As far as improvising, most guitarists have falsetas that they have been playing for years. Even the greats play the same ones over and over. But the order, as well as other details, can be improvised. Also, compas variations are often improvised.

By all means practice your classical pieces with a metronome, at least sometimes-there is really no downside to it.

quote:

ORIGINAL: trivium91

This has helped me immensely, i was basically given the initial impression that the metronome is the holy grail. Let’s be honest, i dont think anyone wants to practice with a metronome in 100% of their practice time. I was also under the impression that flamenco was more improv on the spot, or is a particular song more or less put together ahead of time? I guess working out how a falseta as you said, fits into the compas can really only be done ahead of time. So I’m not sure where the improv element fits in, i physically have to count 9 notes in a triplet beat cycle before hand to figure out how it will fit into the compas. That of course is a separate topic i suppose.

How you are using it sounds about how i would be using it, which is as a tool in order to develop better rhythm or groove as you mention and clean up a compas. While you say you dont use it all the time, i suppose if you wanted to play that piece with dancers for example, you would shift more practice time with that particular piece with a metronome. It seems that rythym or groove is something that needs to be developed by re-wiring the brain, the same way reading notes or learning golpe technique does. Based on that its safe to say that the metronome definitely is important to develop a sense of time and rhythm, but does not need to be used 100% of the time. Would it also be safe to say that no matter how well developed someone’s sense of timing and rhythm is, they will never play perfectly in tempo without the use of a metronome? I assume there will be minor timing mistakes, even when playing with others, either too slow or fast which is corrected on the fly?

On a side note, i suppose i can even practise some of my classical pieces with a metronome to help develop this sense of rythym, which would in turn help my flamenco, no?

“ I know there are guys who could just hear it once or twice, and play it right now. But that's life. ”

Also good advice you gave that we shoulnd’t compare ourselves to others.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 21:53:47
 
Stu

Posts: 1979
Joined: Jan. 30 2007
From: London (the South of it), England

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

I don't think you've upset anyone too badly.
Don't worry about it
But coming into a flamenco forum and bashing rhythm is akin to going on a swimmers forum and saying your biggest issue is with water!

None of this exists without rhythm.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 22:56:33
 
Brendan

Posts: 261
Joined: Oct. 30 2010
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

Your metronome has several uses. For most of them, the free metronome you get on your phone with a guitar tuner will do.

One is that you should do all your daily technique drills to a metronome. That’s more about accuracy and evenness than rhythm. If your a-finger is always a little late in your arpeggio or your thumb takes longer to shift between the 5th and 4th strings than it does between 6th and 5th (or something, some small unevenness), the metronome will show it. I’ve been using mine to correct a weakness at a certain point in a right hand pattern, by making that point the downbeat. This is for classical as well as flamenco.

Another is to identify unconscious tactical rubato. When you’re playing a piece, you’re probably slowing down in the tricky bits without knowing you’re doing it (because being tricky, they seem quicker). Only metronome study eliminates this. This is for classical as well as flamenco. This isn’t about groove, it’s about being in control of tempo and making sure that if you do slow down, it’s a conscious musical decision.

Grisha recommends slow metronome practice as a way of preparing for a concert. Play your material to a metronome at like 1/2 or 1/3 of the intended tempo. This forces you to play from conscious memory rather than muscle memory and makes you think about how you play each note. It works! It’s much better than just repeating your prepared piece at full speed—all that does is drill muscle memory, which then fails you in your concert when your anxiety freezes your hands. Again, this isn’t about groove, it’s about control. It works for classical as well as flamenco.

Finally, you can switch to a flamenco metronome to make sure you’re in compás, to reproduce the experience of playing in your patio with your whole family clapping like on the Rito films, and to have a go at that advanced bulería thing of staying in the pocket but leaning out of it as a kind of accent. This is strictly a flamenco thing.

You are free at any time to play your guitar for the sheer joy of it without trying to improve or learn anything. With or without a beat.

_____________________________

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 23:13:28
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to Mark2

I guess the next main question is addressing where to spend the time since i only play an hour a day, sometimes less but more on the weekends. Since Flamenco is what inspired me in the first place to pickup any style of guitar again, i guess that should take 75% of my practice time.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 23:14:04
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to Brendan

Interesting...do you play classical and flamenco? What sort of challenges do you face?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 23:16:19
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to Stu

Yes i guess i had my terms crossed which did not help. I understand now that tempo and rhythm are two sperate things. it sounds like tempo can, and most likely will be off and require constant correcting through speeding up or slowing down but rhythm should not be because its directly tied to compas.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 23:18:41
 
Brendan

Posts: 261
Joined: Oct. 30 2010
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

quote:

ORIGINAL: trivium91

Interesting...do you play classical and flamenco? What sort of challenges do you face?


This isn’t about me.

_____________________________

https://sites.google.com/site/obscureflamencology/
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 26 2022 23:28:17
 
devilhand

 

Posts: 1153
Joined: Oct. 15 2019
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

quote:

The other challenge is the song I put together has triplets and 16th note arpeggios, i have been switching the metronome to click for the different eighth and sixteenth notes. Should I just be leaving the metronome
In quarter note mode and playing to that instead for the entire song?

Yes. No need to subdivide the beat in this case. You should leave the metronome in quarter note mode. One quarter note or one beat equals a 8th note triplet or a 16th note arpeggio.

But I can imagine when you learn new falseta or melodic figures played by the thumb, subdivisions into 2, 3 or 4 will make sense so that you can familiarize yourself with the rhythmic structure of that falseta e.g. which note falls on which downbeat or off-beat etc.

_____________________________

Say No to Fuera de Compás!!!
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 27 2022 0:35:05
 
JasonM

Posts: 1806
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to trivium91

Should you learn flamenco? I say follow your inspiration, whatever it is. Vicente? Good choice! And yes, you are capable of learning to play flamenco guitar!

Metronome is frustrating at first but eventually it sort of becomes fun. Rhythm becomes a game, and rhythm is what makes flamenco interesting.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 27 2022 0:38:20
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to JasonM

Never thought about it like that, I’ll see if can change my mindset. Perhaps in just being to pessimistic.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 27 2022 1:05:02
 
trivium91

 

Posts: 55
Joined: Jan. 24 2022
 

RE: How important is timing and metr... (in reply to Brendan

No but I like to draw from other peoples experiences. Curious if it really is possible to play/learn both for people that are not Pepe Romero
, lol. Flamenco has to be my main focus, but my hope is to improve in classical aswell.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 27 2022 1:06:28
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