Most of you know the importance of ear training, but how many of you do it?
Ear training is one of those things that people often put off as they don’t know how to start or what to do or even the benefits of doing it.
Well, the benefits run quite deep.
If you get good ears you will…
- Be more able to play the music you hear in your head on the guitar
- Have better recognition of pitch
- Be more in tune with the music and be a better all-round musician.
The above is just the tip of the iceberg really.
Anyway, ear training doesn’t have to be complex (but it certainly can be).
If you have never done much ear training before, the easiest way to practise it and test yourself is to do this:
Pluck any random note on the guitar (fretted or open, it doesn’t matter) and sing that pitch out loud.
Yep, you might want to lock yourself in a different room or ensure the house is empty before doing it if you are self-conscious (which I know I am when doing this)…
…but honestly, this way of getting started with ear training is really useful.
If the pitch is too high or low, simply play another note on the guitar and try again.
There are a variety of ways of training your ears, but using your voice like this is really powerful.
Your voice acts as a bridge between your brain and your ear.
Without using the voice, it’s like you are trying to jump from one side of a canyon to the other.
When the bottom of the canyon is a swamp full of crocodiles, you are much better off having a bridge to use to get across rather than trying to jump!
That is what the voice is like – the bridge to get you across smoothly.
Anyway, your challenge for today is to go somewhere private, shut the door, pick 3 notes on the guitar and sing those notes.
If you are not sure if you are in tune with the guitar, record yourself and listen back.
Keep trying each day until you can sing 3 notes in tune with the guitar.
It takes practice for sure, but it is worth it!
There are lots more exercises you can do, of course.
Some very powerful, some simple but mighty effective, and some more in-depth.
…But being able to do this simple note singing game is a super important start.
If you want tips for getting good at this and if you want to learn some very useful ear training exercises I talked about…
Check out the In Focus section of my Elite Guitarist Inner Circle.
It has a little section dedicated to this important area of guitar playing.
P.S. This post was originally taken from Dan Thorpe’s private email list. To get blog posts like this sent to you which are full of great tips to make fingerpicking, strumming, and learning guitar more enjoyable (especially if you are over 40) join Dan’s list. It’s 100% free, HERE.