How would you count this?

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twang
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How would you count this?

Post by twang » Wed May 31, 2017 1:50 am

How would you count this?
HowToCount.GIF
In particular measure 2, but also making sure it's correctly connected to measures 1 and 3.

Any practice suggestions?
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Jeffrey Armbruster
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by Jeffrey Armbruster » Wed May 31, 2017 1:55 am

one, two, threeandfour.
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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Wed May 31, 2017 8:05 am

Firstly, use a metronome to maintain the pulse either side the triplet.
Nextly, when in doubt, subdivide the beat. To get used to triplet quarters we might pretend (or rewrite) every thing in half values. Would it be easy to read as 8 th triplets? To subdivide as it is, as an exercise we could add 8ths between the triplet quarters. Then on the first 2 beats count them as triplets (or one could play as too) and that then gives the underlying pulse for the triplet quarters.
Much easier to demo than describe!
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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Wed May 31, 2017 10:26 am

I should add that answering this on my phone first thing wasn't quite the best idea. The question was how to count the rhythm, and to be honest, in those time values, I'm not sure how to deal with the triplet. I wouldn't count "threeandfour" because those aren't the beats. In my own work I'd fall back on counting it as though in 2/2 time and say "One and Two-and-uh."
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by Jeffrey Armbruster » Wed May 31, 2017 11:43 pm

Thanks Stephen; you're right of course. I wasn't thinking about the beat.
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chiral3
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by chiral3 » Wed May 31, 2017 11:48 pm

It doesn't make too much sense. That measure needs a rest or some dots to make sense in 4. Maybe if it was the first bar we could say it was anacrusis...
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setecordas
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by setecordas » Thu Jun 01, 2017 12:08 am

In the second measure, you can subdivide the second half into two sets of triplets so that the triplet quarter notes indicated fall on 3, on the 'a' of 3, and on the '&' of 4. You would then count "3 a &":

1 (&) 2 (&) 3 (&) a (4) & (a)

counts in parentheses are not played.
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twang
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by twang » Fri Jun 02, 2017 2:11 pm

Thanks for the advice, I've been experimenting with it all.

At the slowest tempos it seems like counting measure 2 as four triplets get the job done but falls apart as speed increases.
At a higher tempo, counting it 1, 2, 3 la la (instead of threeandfour) seemed ok
At a still higher tempo something like 1, 2, da, da, da, | duh, 2 3 4 helps to make sure the faster triplets don't speed me up

It's still kind of early to tell what will really work.
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setecordas
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by setecordas » Fri Jun 02, 2017 2:18 pm

As you get better at it, you will eventually feel the triplet,
rather than count it. That's probably the reason we all scratch out heads thinking about it. Try tapping out a 3 against 2 polyrhythm and practice counting 1 - 2 and 1 2 3 alternating (hemiola) over it.
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khayes
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by khayes » Fri Jun 02, 2017 4:14 pm

Think of measure 2 in mathematical terms. On beats 3 and 4, let them be represented by 2 triplets made up of 3 eighth notes each. So beats 3 and 4 now contain 6 eighth notes, effectively giving a 12/8 feeling. Now place an accent over the 1st, 3rd, and 5th eighth notes. Your quarter notes should occur on each accent. Each quarter note must get equal value. So often I hear measures like this played as if they are 2 dotted eighth notes followed by another eighth note. Those are not equal values. There are some good explanations on UTube, especially some of the percussion videos I think are very good.
Last edited by khayes on Fri Jun 02, 2017 9:08 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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twang
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by twang » Fri Jun 02, 2017 4:30 pm

setecordas wrote:
Fri Jun 02, 2017 2:18 pm
Try tapping out a 3 against 2 polyrhythm and practice counting 1 - 2 and 1 2 3 alternating (hemiola) over it.
Can you expand on what you mean here? Thanks.
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D.Cass
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by D.Cass » Fri Jun 02, 2017 5:05 pm

There are a couple of ways to count this. First, I tend to count triplets as 1 tee tah 2 tee tah etc. The more academic would be 1 2 3 tah (4) tee. Another way, actually easier, is think of that measure in cut time and they become eighth note triplets.

setecordas
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by setecordas » Fri Jun 02, 2017 5:05 pm

So in the left hand, tap out quart notes while in the right hand tap out triplet quarter notes. Count out loud the left hand quarter notes and then right hand triplets alternating while tapping the polyrhythm with both hands.

B = both hands
L = left hand
R = right hand
- = rest

The hands play: B-RLR-B-RLR-B-RLR-B-RLR-

Counting out loud: 1--2--3--4--1-2-3-1-2-3-

1--2--3--4-- aligns with B--L--B--L--
1-2-3-1-2-3- aligns with B-R-R-B-R-R-
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mainterm
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by mainterm » Thu Jun 22, 2017 11:58 pm

Stephen Kenyon wrote:
Wed May 31, 2017 10:26 am
In my own work I'd fall back on counting it as though in 2/2 time and say "One and Two-and-uh."
to OP: I think the other replies here are well and good, but I think Stephen's is the simplest *practical* solution to understanding how to articulate this rhythm. You could also just render the pattern in 2/4 - halve the values (again as Stephen suggested) but do it quite literally and see if that helps.

[edit/credit: D.Cass' in addition to Stephen's post also suggests this rather simple approach]

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twang
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Re: How would you count this?

Post by twang » Fri Jun 23, 2017 1:22 pm

I'm happy to report that all these suggestions helped. In the end, what drove it home was counting the second and third measures as...

(1-a-la) (2-a-la) (a-la) (a-la) (a-la) | (1-a-la) (2) (3 &) (3 e &) (a)

I found it was easy to switch to counting triplets on beat one because all I had to do was hold the note and count. By beat 3 my brain had shifted to the triple subdivision so I could get the feel of the dotted quarters. Going into the third measure, I kept the triplet subdivision on beat one make sure I had the feel of a whole beat, then I was easy to switch back to a duple subdivision on beat 2, just in time for beat 3.
"An amateur is he who takes up the study of an instrument as a relaxation from his serious occupations." -- Sor

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