View Full Version : Metronome difficulties.

04-12-2004, 10:34 PM
For some reason or another, i can't use a metronome. I can never count the notes or stay at the metronome speed. I tried going slower, but that didnt work either. Does anyone have any tips on working on it?

04-12-2004, 11:17 PM
I have been playing 4 months now, the mtrnme is easy to use. How can you not keep up with it? Do you pick alternately?

04-12-2004, 11:33 PM
I never said i couldnt keep up with it. I just can't play at the same speed. I always go too fast or too slow or whatever.

Bongo Boy
04-12-2004, 11:47 PM
The tip I can provide is to practice. You might try setting it for say 80 bpm then play simple quarter note exercises...such as 4 note-per-string (nps) chromatic runs, even setting up a strong downbeat on '1' if your metronome supports it, and doing the same thing with your 4nps exercise. Do this until you get it right all the time, then add in a single element to the rhthym, such as a couple of 1/8ths in place of the 4th 1/4 note in each bar.

Just an idea--I had to begin brain-dead simple when first using a click track--it wasn't that easy for me.

04-28-2004, 09:45 PM
I can get 1/4's and 1/8s but 1/16s really mess me up. Same with sextuplets.

04-28-2004, 10:22 PM
you can get digital metronomes that can do clicks for subdivisions of beats, maybe if you play with one of them it will improve your ability to split the beat up.

04-29-2004, 12:58 AM
I never knew that. I only have a quartz one or something. Any that you'd recomend?

04-29-2004, 01:13 AM
One that Id recommend is ymetronome. Its a freeware program which you should be able to find via a search engine.

One thing regarding playing 16th / 32nd notes etc. ( smaller subdivisions ).
Try to accent the first note of each group of four. So you accent the note on the downbeat. Pick that one slightly harder, make it stand out, like DUH-duh-duh-duh DUH-duh-duh-duh etc.
That way, youll focus on "hitting" the strong beats, and after a while, youll hopefully ( probably ) notice that you can stay in synch with the metronome even without accenting those notes ( it sounds cool to do that sometimes, but you wanna get to a point where you dont NEED to do it anymore )
Hope this helps

05-03-2004, 12:13 PM
A couple of suggestions to make things a bit easier ...

1) You may need to begin your metronome work with something other than your guitar ... I've had good luck with students working with just a pair of drumsticks, clicking them together. Begin with pacing the metronome ... click right along with it. You'll either be trying to hear the metronome and 'react' when you hear the beat (wrong) ... or falling into a unity with it ... adapting to its cycle and getting in sync with it (correct). When this is fairly easy and natural, then begin trying to divide the beat ... first in half (eighth notes), thirds (triplets), quarters ... etc.

2) Bringing the guitar back into the picture, begin with a single note, and do the same thing ... downpick the quarter notes, and the alternate pick eighths ... don't worry about scales, etc. yet.

3) Move on to simple and short phrases. The first 3 notes of a major scale, up and down, for example, or short pentatonic phrases. By this time, I think you'll be over the worst of it.

4) THEN ... resolve yourself to make the metronome a part of all of your practice. Don't fall for the mistaken belief that you'll become dependent on it. I've had students say they "can't stand" the metronome ... this is a phase you go through, and you must absolutely overcome it or you'll never get the technique you want.


05-03-2004, 12:24 PM
great suggestions. I occasionally teach young kids, and for them its extremely hard to focus on PLAYING something on the guitar AND pay attention to the metronome at the same time. So we start clapping or stomping along to the beat, later we try to clap the offbeat or subdivisions.
Its a good way to get used to it.

I also would like to recommend the "paper exercise" once more. Weave a piece of paper between your strings... like, put it over the low E-String, under the A-string, over the D-string etc.
When you now hit the strings ( strum them ) you get a percussive sound very similar to a snare drum.
Now try to "eliminate" the clicks of the metronom... try to "feel" the tempo and hit the strings at the exact right moment, so you only hear those sounds from the strings / paper, kinda eliminating the metronome click.
Do this for a few minutes every day until you can nail it, until youre actually in synch with the metronome. Be brutally honest with yourself, and dont cheat... youd only cheat yourself.

07-04-2004, 11:54 PM
I recently (Less than a week ago) started using the metronome built in the Zoom 707, no visual aid, just the beats, I thought it was impossible at first, but it turned out to be really easy.

Set your metronome at 60BMP, so that's one beat per second, to make things easier.

Sit down, and hit your thigh with each beat (As in, a percussive hit, not a paintful one :))

After you get the feel of that, while STILL hitting with your hand, use the other one to hit the other thigh, TWICE per beat, the relationship between both should be easy, since you're using two hands at the same time, a bit tricky at first.

To make things easier, think this way (The second hand must hit TWICE, in the time the first hand hits ONCE, meaning it is TWICE as FAST, in other words, with every other hit, both hands will sound at the same time.

Everytime you start the metronome, do this, you'll eventually figure out how to subdevide the beats without resorting to any "method".

Playing along, at first, don't even bother with the left hand, it will just mess things up, just alternate pick the open strings, one string per beat (If you're doing 8th notes, you hit the string twice, then move to the next one)

Hope that helped.