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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    29

    Learning and memorizing tunes. Help!

    Does anyone have any tips on how to become faster memorizers? I have a huge problem with memorizing the melody and chord progression of a song. I play and improvise much better with my head out of the chart, and the crutch is starting irritate!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    1,205
    For the melody, learning it by ear (or at least making a reasonable attempt before consulting a leadsheet) is the way to go. It's really not that hard on most tunes. Leadsheets are wrong sometimes - I just experienced that last night on Lester Young's Symphony For Sid (which is really easy to learn). Then play in a few different positions. Do that few days in a row and you're set.

    For the chords, a little analysis goes a long way...such as "Ok, the first 4 bars are simply a I-vi-ii-V and then at bar 5 the V switches to minor for a short ii-V-I and then...and then the bridge consists of a long ii-V-I in F and then again in Eb and finally ends on a dominant to create tension back to the I...". If you think of it that way and comp through it in a few different positions in at least 2 keys, it becomes hard to forget the progression, actually. Also, teaching someone the tune pays huge dividends.

    You're definitely doing the right thing by getting away from the sheets.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Rainbow Village, USA
    Posts
    2,747

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    29
    This is a great article, and a great site! Thanks!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Rainbow Village, USA
    Posts
    2,747
    Quote Originally Posted by baerashbrewer View Post
    This is a great article, and a great site! Thanks!
    Yes, there is lots of excellent content at that site.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    2,791
    Toones Jason Palmer's Weblog

    Jason Palmer is the real deal...

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