LearnJazzPiano.com archives: Is it cheating to slow things down to transcribe?
GS_Jon -- 03/21/2007, 19:25:48 -- #34068
My folks bought me some looping software for Christmas and tonight I discovered a use that I had not anticipated:  I can slow down a recorded .wav file while preserving the pitch!  Within seconds passages of solos I had been struggling to transcribe were suddenly within my grasp, and in five minutes I accomplished what I had been struggling with for weeks: Lester Young's Honeysuckle Rose solo.

I realize that transcribing at tempo forces you to develop your ear to learn to listen quickly, but I was really stuck for a while and this will make transcribing projects a real snap.  I still intend to learn to sing the solos at tempo before going to the piano, but is it considered cheating to slow things down electronically once you can sing the solo?

Or should slowing things down be only used after considerable good-faith struggles to hear at tempo?


CynBad -- 03/21/2007, 20:05:08 -- #34068
That is the whole point of transcription software or hardware!
Maybe starting slow at first will eventually make it easier to hear it fast.

tomwrush -- 03/21/2007, 20:09:30 -- #34068
Hi Jon-
It's not cheating if you learn to sing it. I got this from an interview, forgot where, but it's the lennie tristano technique. Sing, sing, sing. Don't just get the pitches, there's no retention, learn to sing it.

1/] Learning solos from records by ear...since I had a C-melody at the time,
he was hip enough to start me with Frankie Trumbauer, the genius with Bix who influenced Pres! This was one of Tristano*s great innovations. Lee Konitz studied with Lennie Tristano in Chicago from the age of 14!
1.] choose a solo by one of the greats: Pops, Roy Eldridge, Lester Young [especially/ before WW2], Lady Day, Bird, Bud, Fats, Tristano, Lee Konitz [before *55], et al
2.] choose one chorus to focus on
3.] listen to it so much that you naturally start to sing with it
4.] sing with it so much that you are eventually able to sing it without the recording
5.] once you can do that, teach it to yourself on your ax...you may wish to do all this
at 1/2 speed first, which is great fun and a trip!
6.] go and play it with the recording

This process can take a long time, don't force, just listen until you naturally start to sing it. It's a really deep way of listening and absorbing the theory.

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