this is a concept question... whats the difference between lick, run and pattern ???


There are 3 comments, leave a comment.
in my mind here are the definitions:

lick = a musical phrase, a riff

run = a longish ascending or descending line usually scale based

pattern = a note combination (generally logical) that repeats itself or when starting on  a different note may be slightly modified to accommodate the scale or underlying harmony.

here are more of my opinions:

lick = a useful musical statement, something that definitely sounds cool and is worth stealing

run = a flashy trick, something to impress the punters with your technical ability

pattern = something that you practice, the basis for a boring exercise

all 3 are notes used for improvisation that are isolated in time for anaysis so that they may be practised.
1.)riff is the most musical of these.... just any musical idea that works over the particular harmonic situation.
2.)run   is the ussually but not always the fastest of the three hence its name.  a fast series of notes usually but not always scale or arpeggio orientated that moves quickly up and or down the musical register and works over the current harmonic situation.
3.) pattern.  a series of notes that can played over the current harmonic situation and can most easily be explained mathematically... ie
coltranes digital patterns are 1235 or 5672   etc  etc...  so a patterns inspiration tends to be mathematical as opposed to a riffs whichs is normally completely musical.
i like this question...
makes me think for example that ii v i practice could be broken down into
ii v i riffs
ii v i  runns
ii v i patterns.
and that that might be a useful venture.
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