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bilbo__baggins
01-11-2004, 12:12 PM
I've started trying to learn 'Pretty Girl' by Eric Clapton. The intro involves playing 4 notes one at a time of the chords F, Dmin, A, C, G, A, Dmin, C. Firstly, is this what's called playing an arpeggio? Secondly, should I be playing it by using chord shapes, or should I move my left hand fingers to each note as I go along? Thirdly, assuming I should be using chord shapes: I can play the tune but I pause between each chord change, and when I play along with the song (which I always thought of as a slow song) I cannot keep up. I worked out that the tempo is 146bpm (or is it half that, with eighth notes? how do I tell?) and I've started just about to play in time at 100bpm! It sounds really slow but I'm stuggling to keep up and play in time even then. Is this the only way to overcome the problem ie. starting very slowly? (I have read the article on smooth chord changes, and yes it was the C that I struggle with most).

Unhorizon
01-12-2004, 12:13 AM
I know nothing about the song but I do know is you should play it as slow as you need to in order to get it perfect. Once you have it perfect at a slow speed, slowly work up the tempo. You should be jamming along with the recording in no time!(well, maybe a little time, but once you get it at the right speed you will get a boost of confidence)

Bongo Boy
01-17-2004, 07:25 PM
Originally posted by bilbo__baggins
Firstly, is this what's called playing an arpeggio?Yes.


Secondly, should I be playing it by using chord shapes, or should I move my left hand fingers to each note as I go along?I can't tell you how you should play it, but I think the idea is to get into position for each chord, as though you were going to play the chord...but then arpeggiate that thing.
Thirdly, assuming I should be using chord shapes: I can play the tune but I pause between each chord changeWell of course you do. It's new.
...and when I play along with the song (which I always thought of as a slow song) I cannot keep upDon't worry about it. In fact some would say don't even try to play in at any tempo at all. Meaning, clear articulation of each note, smooth transitions between chords, and relaxation are important at this time.
I worked out that the tempo is 146bpm (or is it half that, with eighth notes? how do I tell?) and I've started just about to play in time at 100bpm!I've started at about 60bpm and found that too fast. Don't worry about it.
Is this the only way to overcome the problem ie. starting very slowly?I think so, based on what everyone has told me. The trick seems, in part, to be going slow enough.

bilbo__baggins
01-17-2004, 09:29 PM
Thanks for the replies. I was really disappointed with myself that even slowing it down to 80 bpm I struggled, even to the point I forgot what chord came next...

However, I've worked at it and can nearly play along at the normal temp now!

One thing I find odd - I've been practicing for about 2 years, and I've practiced scales and improvisation a lot, and I can just copy some bits of songs immediately (especially if I'm familiar with the song) without working out each note one by one (nothing too complicated obviously!). But setting myself the goal of 'learning a song' and playing each note correctly at the right time - suddenly I feel like a total and utter novice. Playing along 'in the style of' a song seems so much easier!

Is this the same for everyone - ie. trying a technique not used before suddenly becomes like the first time you picked up a guitar? I didn't expect that.