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  • @stuart. Clarity clarity wherefore art thou......
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • Posts: 2,783
    stuart wrote: »
    All this proves one thing very clearly -- I need to get out more.

    :))

    @Jehu I could really care less where the dots are, either works as a visual anchor.
    But you do get used to looking at one and I can definitely see changing from one to another guitar with different placement can throw you off. Using naturally occurring harmonics as a guideline where to place the dots made most sense to me, sorta fits every model.

    This whole topic made me do an experiment: cover the side dots with masking tape (my guitar doesn't have any dots on the fretboard on my request) and play.
    On the first try I was definitely getting tripped up, but it took a second or to get my bearing back every time it happened. Now, I can't take my guitar like that and go to the jam or play a show but, like I guessed earlier, I'm even more convinced now that it wouldn't take a whole lot of training to abandon the dots altogether.

    Really, is there an upright bass or a violin player to weigh in on how they navigate the fretboard?

    Yes there's people like Tcha playing a guitar, but his sense of space is way superior to what we'll ever develop.

    Another thing got revealed when I did this, I could see the notes more clearly in a sense. Like the notes didn't hide behind the dot, they were just themselves, no sidekicks.

    I'm actually going to try to spend some time practicing like this, at least a few hours a week, see what happens. I'd switch completely I could remove myself and just woodshed for a few months, but there's a band, a class at Old Town School and DiJ is coming up.
    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
  • Play your guitar with your eyes closed and you will discover the mechanics of how violin and bass players do it. Decades ago I played fret less electric bass.. Once you practice some and listen a lot it's not that hard.
    Buco
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • bopsterbopster St. Louis, MOProdigy Altamira M30, Wide Sky PL-1, 1940? French mystery guitar
    Posts: 484
    Jazzaferri wrote: »
    Play your guitar with your eyes closed and you will discover the mechanics of how violin and bass players do it. Decades ago I played fret less electric bass.. Once you practice some and listen a lot it's not that hard.

    Plus, it can force you to get out of the "guitaristic" licks and into new territory.
  • Posts: 2,783
    It got too hard when I was doing an exercise that I got as an assignment in the class I'm taking, to go over "Stella by starlight" and go through the form playing only 3rds approaching half note below, and then 5ths and then 7ths.
    I had to go back to the dots.
    I guess this is something you could pull off without the dots if you could think in terms of how intervals relate to each other from chord to chord, instead of notes themselves.
    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
  • Michael BauerMichael Bauer Chicago, ILProdigy Selmers, Busatos and more…oh my!
    Posts: 1,002
    Marc, perhaps you should brush up on your reading skills, since no one compared 9th fret dots to burning witches. But someone did say that "that's the way we've always done it" reasoning perpetuates bad ideas, and that person did give an example of burning witches as a bad idea that we've done away with. Dumping the illogic that is 9th fret dots would hardly be as socially relevant, but it would be a tiny step toward a more enlightened world. Baby steps...

    I've never been a guitar player, but I've played one on stage.
  • cavemusiccavemusic Edmonton, Alberta 2010 JWC Modele Jazz, 2015 Jean Barault Grande Bouche with resonator, 1947 Kay upright bass
    Posts: 34
    Buco wrote: »
    stuart wrote: »
    All this proves one thing very clearly -- I need to get out more.

    :))

    ...
    Really, is there an upright bass or a violin player to weigh in on how they navigate the fretboard?

    ...
    I play upright bass - no markings at all. I got used to it and I prefer it. The lack of markings forces me to listen. I had to learn the positions by feel and a few landmarking tricks. For example, on a D neck, the D note on the G string (7th non-fret) is right at the crook of the neck. The twelfth non-fret has an octave harmonic. With a few landmarks like that and correct finger spacing you can measure out your way around. Before a gig or rehearsal I go through a bit of an orientation exercise around the fingerboard to remind my hands where to go. Kind of a tuning process. However, when I'm trying to figure out a tune at a jam or trying to learn guitar parts from watching someone else (videos or live), I appreciate the markings on the front of the other guy's guitar fingerboard so I can figure out what is going on more easily. In a lot of jams you can't quite hear, so visual clues are useful. When playing guitar, I try not to rely on markings too much. Still trying :( .
    Bucopickitjohn
    Kevin
  • StringswingerStringswinger Santa Cruz and San Francisco, CA✭✭✭✭ 1993 Dupont MD-20, Shelley Park Encore
    Posts: 414
    @Michael Bauer. My reading skills are fine. I do remember you writing that it was an idiot that put the dot on the 9th fret on the first page of this thread. IMO, that was an idiotic thing to write. Perhaps you should check your writing skills? ;-)
    "When the chord changes, you should change" Joe Pass
  • ShemiShemi Cardiff✭✭✭
    edited March 2015 Posts: 170
    Buco wrote: »
    stuart wrote: »


    Really, is there an upright bass or a violin player to weigh in on how they navigate the fretboard?

    Well I'm a cellist, does that count?lol

    There is a mixture if things at play which all work together:

    Muscle memory is a key player. You start of by learning where first position is. After a while, your body just remembers what it feels like to be there and your hand just automatically goes to the right place. When I started at 7 years old, my teacher marked first position using tape although this is a method I avoid when teaching. Over time this builds up over all positions. A lot of time is spent practicing shifts from one position to another.

    You also develop a sense of the space between intervals. Practicing octave jumps is a common exercise, for example, to build up this "feeling" of distance. There is also feeling the distance between each finger, the fact that they're spread further apart in first position but closer together in fourth position, or that A# feels a little closer to B than a Bb does, for instance.

    This all helps build a mental map of the fingerboard.

    The ear is constantly working, making adjustments. Sometimes, I suspect, the ear hears a "mistake" and adjusts it before it become noticeable. The important thing I find is that you actually have to be able to hear in your head the note you're shifting too, from the one you're on. This is just relative pitch in action.

    In fact, this can make string instruments a nightmare if you ever find yourself with rubbish onstage sound where you can't hear yourself well like I have on many occasions over the years. In this case, you just do your best, but I had little tricks to look for clues on whether I was in tune. For example, I would look at the low C string if I was playing middle C on the A string to see if it was vibrating sympathetically.

    Having not been born with perfect pitch I can't say how those that do see their instruments, but these are some of the things I did to dial in my intonation.

    When I was studying, I used to go to the practice rooms without any windows, turn off the lights so it was pitch black and play Bach. It was almost spiritual! Lol



    BucoWim Glenn
  • Posts: 2,783
    @shemakimoo that was a great explanation, thank you.
    Ha, a dreaded room without the windows, I almost believed that was a myth :)
    Shemi
    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
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