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Thread: a quick Sightreading question...

  1. #1
    Registered User leppard81's Avatar
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    a quick Sightreading question...

    If you have read from a, e.g. a Real Book, do you play it just like guitar music (written an octave higher, than played) or do you play it one octave higher (and therefore play it like its meant to be read?)


    thanks
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  2. #2
    Registered User Shredmaniac's Avatar
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    For jazz heads, I generally play it like it is meant to be read (an octave higher than standard guitar notation). It really depends on the range I'll have to access though. If I'm working through a violin piece it doesn't make much sense to try to play it in the original range, since guitars don't go as high as a violin. Jazz heads are often written in a range of notes accessible on the guitar.

    Sometimes I'll try to play a head an octave lower or higher just to see how it sounds (it can also sound good to switch octaves during playing !). But playing in the "proper" range often allows you to be heard more distinctly in a band context. That being said, there are tons of examples of jazz heads being played in the lower range of the guitar. Listen to Pat Metheny's "Question & Answer" for great, great examples. Of course his rythm section is Roy Haynes and Dave Holland so they know how to react to that

    Hope this helps !

    Pierre

  3. #3
    Registered User leppard81's Avatar
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    Yes it does help! Thanks alot!!

    ALEX :-)
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  4. #4
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    Off the top of my head I can't think of any tunes that actually sound bad, or are not possible to play, in either the low or high octave. So I'd suggest learning as many tunes as possible in both octaves.

    For me, I like bebop heads to be lower, but chord melodies are easier when the melody is an octave up.

  5. #5
    Registered User Jamie FT's Avatar
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    I'm not a great reader by any means and I've been wondering this myself recently. If I've got the time I'll try and learn it in both octaves. Even if I never play it in one octave it still gives me reading practice!

  6. #6
    Registered User leppard81's Avatar
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    I tried it out yesterday: I played the melody of "My romance" in 3 different octaves. Its great practice, as it keeps your mind fresh.
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  7. #7
    Mad Scientist forgottenking2's Avatar
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    It's actually smart to learn a melody in all octaves/positions in the guitar, then do the same with the chords. That way when you improvise or comp you will be a lot more free to embellish both. The ultimate thing would be to improvise a solo arrangement on the fly, I have seen people do it, I can't yet but I will someday.
    "If God had wanted us to play the piano he would've given us 88 fingers"

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