View Full Version : Do you memorize before you record or do you

Jun-11-2004, 1:57pm
i'd be interested to know who has memorized the tunes we are learning before recording?

i've kicked my dependance on tab/notation files finally. i was wondering how many people use the sheet music/tablature while playing?

Michael H Geimer
Jun-11-2004, 2:25pm
I'll play from notation when I'm first learning a tune, but with the attitude that I'm only playing it from paper so that I can hear how the tune goes ... and then ultimately learn the tune 'by ear'.

Having a solid mental grasp of the how the melody sounds is very important to me. Without it, I'm left trying to get my fingers into position, and I'll stutter, or de-rail completely.

But if I have the melody running round my head then even if I flub a note, I can keep it together becaue the tune is still going in my head, and I still know where I am.

- Benig

Jun-11-2004, 2:35pm
I think you should memorize everything you play, whether it's in the studio or on stage. #I've found -- at least for myself -- that if I try to read lyrics/chords/tab/whatever while performing, I'm putting my energies into concentrating on the printed page rather than into the performance. #In other words, if you can't do it from familiarity, then don't do it! # ;-)

Don Smith

Jun-11-2004, 3:00pm
I always memorize all tunes I play. I use sheet music when learning it, but once I can remember how it goes I just play it. This way I can put more energy in making it sound like music, not only like some notes.

Jun-11-2004, 4:01pm
ditto. i used to only play from sheet music. memorizing a song seemed like a decade away. but, when i forced myself to start memorizing tunes and got a little music theory under my belt, my music grew by leaps and bounds. it's definitely the way to go! one downside is that it's easier to neglect your timing. i'm still guilty of that . . .

good question.

happy pickin'


Brian Ray
Jun-11-2004, 4:13pm
I print the tune and sleep with it under my pillow... when this doesn't work, I practice it until I can hear it in my sleep.

It's my own version of osmosis...

Dan Adams
Jun-11-2004, 4:40pm
Memorize what? Just kidding! I learned that tune so long ago.... Now where is my pick? Dan

Jun-12-2004, 9:09am
I haven't been able to memorize any song yet. I probably memorize most of it throughout but not all. I know it'd be better to completely memorize it. I tried to pick out the Fisher's tune on guitar (I'm a tab reader so this was slow), but I was thrilled I could through some of it by ear.


Martin Jonas
Jun-12-2004, 9:28am
I'm with Alan: what I've recorded so far was all played with the score in front of me. I would like to memorise more tunes, but it takes me a long time to do that and I get bored playing the same tune too many times. I guess it's a choice of either playing a few tunes over and over again until I know them by heart or playing lots of tunes from the sheet. I know it would be better to the former, but it's more fun to do the latter, so that's what I end up doing most of the time.


Jun-12-2004, 10:22am
After getting the melody under my belt, I like to totally improvise my solos in the studio trying various approaches--especially if I'm overdubbing the solo...
I like to do this as soon as possible after learning the melody to retain "freshness"...

I like to engineer the recording while I'm working out the solo, using a footpedal to punch in the various sections of the solo. #

Digital is very forgiving for doing these sorts of punches, especially compared to the "good ol' days" of analog (check out, if you can stand to listen to it one more time, the very obvious punches during the guitar solo of LZ's "Stairway to Heaven" for example).

Obviously it's nice to nail a solo ASAP with no fixes required, but if fixes are required, one can literally punch in during a tremelo or a pause in the solo without any trace of a punch-in. #Some of my solos are literally 4-5 sections seemlessly sewn together to form a cohesive (one hopes) solo...

I imagine it's even easier on Pro Tools or the like, but I'm working on Tascam DA38s....

Jun-13-2004, 4:59am
If you don't have the music "in your head" then you haven't learned it. If you have it in your heart then you own it.

Jun-13-2004, 5:03am
I try to memorise everyting I play also.

I use the sheet music and the midi or Tabledit file to get used to the song and then play it till I can play it without the music.

I am usually working on more than one song at a time too. I find that when I go back to one that I have already started, the parts I already memorized seem to fall into place a little and then I can work on the parts I didn't pick up yet.

Jun-13-2004, 11:55am
A lot of times I like to just have a basic outline in my head of where the tune should go. That way if I get lost, it's not hard to fill in with improvised sections. I used to play with a guy who worked everything out note-for-note and if he got lost, he had to completely stop and start over. Not something you want to do on stage.

Jun-24-2004, 10:45am
Sheet music, sheet music...what the hell is that? http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif

Jun-25-2004, 2:02pm

when do we get to hear something from you? (a recording that is)


Jul-02-2004, 8:50am
How about...never.... http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/tounge.gif

Jul-04-2004, 4:58am