When and when NOT to alternate I and M

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guitarist_le
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When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by guitarist_le » Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:57 am

So my instructor notice that I change my alternating pattern every now and then when I play. I can see how this can be inefficient and slowing when climbing up or down scales.

I'm trying to correct this but there is one thing that is setting me back and is SO hard to break. In the measure pictured of Bach's Prelude to Cello Suite no.1. I play the D with my thumb, A with the I and then strike with my M finger and then strike again with my M, from there I move on to the rest of the measure alternating as usual.

Don't know why I have such a problem, but I think having the I finger standing there prepares me for the other string. Does anyone else have this issue. Is this a total no-no in the GC world? PS. Should I also NOT use my thumb for the D?
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Terpfan
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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by Terpfan » Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:07 am

For me, I would play piaaimimim or piamimimim

Rasqeo
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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by Rasqeo » Thu Feb 07, 2019 7:30 am

You have a slur on the F# so I would probably repeat a finger there as well (either m or a). Strict alternation is a useful habit to develop but there are times when it’s fine to repeat a finger. If you didn’t have the slur then I agree strict alternation would be appropriate.

You should definitely play the first d with p.

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guitarist_le
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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by guitarist_le » Thu Feb 07, 2019 2:36 pm

Terpfan wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:07 am
For me, I would play piaaimimim or piamimimim
Same

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guitarrista
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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by guitarrista » Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:38 pm

It all depends on what your current goal is. It sure sounds to me like you have already mastered idiosyncratic alternation (i.e. not strict but as described by you and others above). However it seems you'd like to practice strict alternation as another tool in your toolbox, and right now it is difficult to "turn it on" at will for this passage.

Therefore, I'd suggest to you to practice, slowly at first, strict alternation over this passage. Starting with p for the 4th string D, of course, but then i, m, [slur], i, m, i, [slur], m, i, m, i, [slur], m, i. (if I got it right). You can even say this in your head while you do it, till you get it into your fingers, in a week or two or three. Then you can start "alternating" the technique itself - by doing the passage once with strict alternation, then with your previous go-to RH fingering, then again strict.. and marvel at your expanded sense of control over your technique and the instrument. :)
Konstantin
--
1982 Anselmo Solar Gonzalez

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guitarist_le
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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by guitarist_le » Thu Feb 07, 2019 5:20 pm

guitarrista wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:38 pm
It all depends on what your current goal is. It sure sounds to me like you have already mastered idiosyncratic alternation (i.e. not strict but as described by you and others above). However it seems you'd like to practice strict alternation as another tool in your toolbox, and right now it is difficult to "turn it on" at will for this passage.

Therefore, I'd suggest to you to practice, slowly at first, strict alternation over this passage. Starting with p for the 4th string D, of course, but then i, m, [slur], i, m, i, [slur], m, i, m, i, [slur], m, i. (if I got it right). You can even say this in your head while you do it, till you get it into your fingers, in a week or two or three. Then you can start "alternating" the technique itself - by doing the passage once with strict alternation, then with your previous go-to RH fingering, then again strict.. and marvel at your expanded sense of control over your technique and the instrument. :)
You hit the nail on the head! And yea, I'm trying to have more control instead of having habits I "just can't" quit. I'm a high level novice/Low intermediate so just getting started on REALLY looking at my technique and noticing the flaws.

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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by Terpfan » Thu Feb 07, 2019 8:57 pm

guitarrista wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:38 pm
It all depends on what your current goal is. It sure sounds to me like you have already mastered idiosyncratic alternation (i.e. not strict but as described by you and others above). However it seems you'd like to practice strict alternation as another tool in your toolbox, and right now it is difficult to "turn it on" at will for this passage.

Therefore, I'd suggest to you to practice, slowly at first, strict alternation over this passage. Starting with p for the 4th string D, of course, but then i, m, [slur], i, m, i, [slur], m, i, m, i, [slur], m, i. (if I got it right). You can even say this in your head while you do it, till you get it into your fingers, in a week or two or three. Then you can start "alternating" the technique itself - by doing the passage once with strict alternation, then with your previous go-to RH fingering, then again strict.. and marvel at your expanded sense of control over your technique and the instrument. :)
The bad thing about this fingering is you are crossing string with m only descending.

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Alexander Kalil
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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by Alexander Kalil » Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:18 pm

guitarist_le wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:57 am
So my instructor notice that I change my alternating pattern every now and then when I play. I can see how this can be inefficient and slowing when climbing up or down scales.
I think the crux of your instructor's observation is consistency, not finger alternation. He/she is probably objecting to your changing your right hand fingering each time you play the passage. This interferes with the process of learning a new piece, which requires slow repetition of the exact same fingering several times over a certain period. The simplest solution is to write down into the score the right hand fingering you are most comfortable with, and then use exactly this fingering every time you practice the piece (possibly saying it in your head as you play, as suggested by guitarrista). For that particular suite it does not have to be strict imi alternation - just any right hand fingering you can maintain consistently in every iteration through the piece.

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guitarist_le
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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by guitarist_le » Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:32 pm

Alexander Kalil wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:18 pm
guitarist_le wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:57 am
So my instructor notice that I change my alternating pattern every now and then when I play. I can see how this can be inefficient and slowing when climbing up or down scales.
I think the crux of your instructor's observation is consistency, not finger alternation. He/she is probably objecting to your changing your right hand fingering each time you play the passage. This interferes with the process of learning a new piece, which requires slow repetition of the exact same fingering several times over a certain period. The simplest solution is to write down into the score the right hand fingering you are most comfortable with, and then use exactly this fingering every time you practice the piece (possibly saying it in your head as you play, as suggested by guitarrista). For that particular suite it does not have to be strict imi alternation - just any right hand fingering you can maintain consistently in every iteration through the piece.
Ahh ok. This makes more sense. Maybe I was taking things too literal lol. But yeah, I get that and with this piece I kind of automatically do the same fingering everytime I play it but I'm not really paying attention so on my lazy days, things may be off and less alternating.

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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by Crofty » Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:56 pm

What would be concerning me far more is the slurring pattern.

It's extremely guitaristic but has very little to do with Bach's style at all.

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guitarist_le
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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by guitarist_le » Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:09 pm

Crofty wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:56 pm
What would be concerning me far more is the slurring pattern.

It's extremely guitaristic but has very little to do with Bach's style at all.
Care to go into detail? I know Bach pieces are more square, for a lack of better term. Baroque was the style.

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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by Rasqeo » Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:12 pm

Crofty wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:56 pm
What would be concerning me far more is the slurring pattern.

It's extremely guitaristic but has very little to do with Bach's style at all.
Agreed. They’re not even used consistently as there’s a slur on the third 16th note of each beat except the third beat when the slur is on the 4th note - odd. I’d be inclined to ignore them all.

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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by guitarrista » Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:11 am

Terpfan wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 8:57 pm
guitarrista wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:38 pm
It all depends on what your current goal is. It sure sounds to me like you have already mastered idiosyncratic alternation (i.e. not strict but as described by you and others above). However it seems you'd like to practice strict alternation as another tool in your toolbox, and right now it is difficult to "turn it on" at will for this passage.

Therefore, I'd suggest to you to practice, slowly at first, strict alternation over this passage. Starting with p for the 4th string D, of course, but then i, m, [slur], i, m, i, [slur], m, i, m, i, [slur], m, i. (if I got it right). You can even say this in your head while you do it, till you get it into your fingers, in a week or two or three. Then you can start "alternating" the technique itself - by doing the passage once with strict alternation, then with your previous go-to RH fingering, then again strict.. and marvel at your expanded sense of control over your technique and the instrument. :)
The bad thing about this fingering is you are crossing string with m only descending.
If you are referring to descending run i,m string-crossing (which is considered more awkward than m,i) It is not bad - one SHOULD be able to do it any which way. This is part of gaining that proficiency.
Konstantin
--
1982 Anselmo Solar Gonzalez

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guitarrista
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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by guitarrista » Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:14 am

Rasqeo wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:12 pm
Crofty wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:56 pm
What would be concerning me far more is the slurring pattern.

It's extremely guitaristic but has very little to do with Bach's style at all.
Agreed. They’re not even used consistently as there’s a slur on the third 16th note of each beat except the third beat when the slur is on the 4th note - odd. I’d be inclined to ignore them all.
I agree - but accepted the passage as presented when suggesting fingerings. I would do it as a descending scale run without any slurs.
Konstantin
--
1982 Anselmo Solar Gonzalez

Terpfan
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Re: When and when NOT to alternate I and M

Post by Terpfan » Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:45 am

guitarrista wrote:
Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:11 am
Terpfan wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 8:57 pm
guitarrista wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:38 pm
It all depends on what your current goal is. It sure sounds to me like you have already mastered idiosyncratic alternation (i.e. not strict but as described by you and others above). However it seems you'd like to practice strict alternation as another tool in your toolbox, and right now it is difficult to "turn it on" at will for this passage.

Therefore, I'd suggest to you to practice, slowly at first, strict alternation over this passage. Starting with p for the 4th string D, of course, but then i, m, [slur], i, m, i, [slur], m, i, m, i, [slur], m, i. (if I got it right). You can even say this in your head while you do it, till you get it into your fingers, in a week or two or three. Then you can start "alternating" the technique itself - by doing the passage once with strict alternation, then with your previous go-to RH fingering, then again strict.. and marvel at your expanded sense of control over your technique and the instrument. :)
The bad thing about this fingering is you are crossing string with m only descending.
If you are referring to descending run i,m string-crossing (which is considered more awkward than m,i) It is not bad - one SHOULD be able to do it any which way. This is part of gaining that proficiency.
When you practice string crossing, that's fine. When you are fingering a piece, try to get best fingering possible. Descending scale cross with I if possible. Ascending with M.

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