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Thread: Using powertab for practising

  1. #1
    Ibreathe Music Advisor EricV's Avatar
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    Using powertab for practising

    OK, hereīs another cool way to use powertab as a practising tool.
    First of all, the basic idea is similar to something I used to do a lot... I used to "program" a metronome on my sequencer. I would i.e. program it to give me a regualr metronome-style click-sound at 90 bpm for 2 minutes. ( or say... i.e. for 50 bars )
    Then, after that, the sequencer would play back that click at 100 bpm ( or 95 or whatever... the increments Iīd use would differ ) for another 2 minutes etc.
    So, I would basically program the sequencer to act like a metronome which automatically increases the tempo to a certain degree after a certain amount of time.
    ( This can be done way easier on many modern drum machines or software metronomes, i.e. YMetronome )

    Anyway, sometimes, Iīd program the lick I was working on into the sequencer, and would play along to that... pretty helpful. Now, to combine those two approaches and turn Powertab into a neat little practising-tool, I made up a ptb-file as an example.
    Check it out ( itīs attached to this post )

    In the first two bars, you can see some basic 5 string sweep-exercise. The tempo is 100 beats, and I set it to 15 repeats ( meaning that the program plays this 16 times )
    Then, it moves on to bars 3 and 4.. the same exercise, but at 110 bpm, 16 times... etc.
    Of course those tempo increments might seem a bit harsh... Iīd recommend to go i.e. 100-104-108-112-116-120 etc.

    Eventually, we get to 200 bpm.

    The cool thing is that you can sit in front of your computer, open the program and a ptb like this one, and just play along, completely concentrating on playing along to it on your guitar.
    When I did that with a sequencer, I would sometimes not even notice that the tempo had increased ( an increase of 4 bpm is rather smooth IMHO ).
    One time, I had the sequencer going like that, and while playing a long to it, I was talking to a friend... and after we were done talking I noticed that in the meantime, my tempo had increased by like 20 bpm !
    Try it out... you can make a ptb like that for yourself, using whatever exercise you wanna work on.
    REMEMBER that the file attached to the post is only an example ! To increase the tempo of such a lick by 20 bpm at a time is pretty tough, so Iīd recommend to copy & paste the exercise a few more times and set the program to smaller steps in tempo.

    By the way, if youīre i.e. working on a song you wanna learn, and you have a ptb-file of the song, you can even set up a "play-along-metronome" luike this very fast... if you i.e. wanna work on like 2 beats of the guitar solo of that song, put a repeat start bar before the first bar and a repeat end bar behind the second one, and go ahead...
    Just thought Iīd share that idea
    Eric
    Attached Files Attached Files

  2. #2
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    that's a great idea
    thx Eric

  3. #3
    Ibreathe Music Advisor EricV's Avatar
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    Oh hey Matthias... welcome at ibreathe
    Glad ya like the idea. Since you practise a lot, I figure this will be quite helpful for ya...
    See ya on friday
    Eric

    PS; Guys, give Matthias a warm welcome, heīs a student of mine. A very talented and dedicated young player !

  4. #4
    Nice idea there Eric, and welcome to Ibreathe Matthias.

  5. #5
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    Thumbs up

    Hi all !!!
    Thank you for the nice greeting.
    I'm only 15 and live in Germany and my english isn't the best but i am at pains to do my best

  6. #6
    Registered User chris's Avatar
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    Hey Eric, that is a great idea! I would have never thought of it.

    Is this a typical way you do your exercises Eric. By that I mean with this type of repetition?

    Welcome MatthiasB! It's always great to see people your age take an interest in guitar and act upon it with a level of maturity that most people don't find for another 10 or more years.

  7. #7
    Ibreathe Music Advisor EricV's Avatar
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    Hey Chris...
    Well, that is ONE way I work on stuff. When I i.e. worked on sweeping, which requires playing some basic exercises many, many times, I used to play along to the sequencer with auto-speed-increase
    It really helps to do it like that, to play these basic exercises over and over along o a metronome or along to a sequencer playing the notes at the same time.
    To not let it get too boring, I often watched a movie or whatever while practising like that. That way, I was kinda distracted and wouldnīt notice how much time was passing. When the movie was over or when I decided to take a break, I was not bored or anything, although I had been drilling on a little exercise for a few hours...
    It really helps, and it helped me to develop some stamina when it comes to playing a basic exercise over and over and over... A lot of people tend to get bored doing that, their mind starts wandering and they start playing other stuff, which isnīt exactly helpful. If you kinda "switch off" your mind or distract yourself in some way while playing along to such a ptb-file or a metronome, you can go on for hours, and will actually be able to make a big step forward.
    So yes, this is one method I use a lot, and although I donīt use it too much these days anymore, I always notice that it helps some of my students a lot
    Eric

    NP: Perlman plays Paganiniīs "24 Caprices"

  8. #8
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    Yep, thats a very good methode !
    I often do the same with exercises where you need not too much concentration. For example the "Permutation" exercice.
    Matthias

  9. #9
    Ibreathe Music Advisor EricV's Avatar
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    ...which, basically, will be explained in one of my upcoming articles which is already finished...
    Eric

  10. #10
    Experimentalist Koala's Avatar
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    Great idea eric, the part i like the most is the not even noticing the tempo go up, its a great feeling when that happes and welcome to Ibreathe MAthias!

  11. #11
    Registered User chris's Avatar
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    Originally posted by EricV
    although I had been drilling on a little exercise for a few hours...
    Seriously... a few hours? Wow, that's great insight for me to gain.. I'd have never guessed. I know Troy Stetina said at the end of one of his videos that repitition is the mother to all skill but I never dreamed of hours of practice on one exercise. Now I know what you mean by practicing the PG lick till your hands fall off. I'll start trying this and see what happens.

    That's what I like about you and the others here who are highly trained and skilled guitarists/musicians... You share things the common guy wouldn't know without finding someone of your caliber and taking lessons. Good instructors are few and far between IMO... so I'm thankful for this site. Keep up the good work!

    Are you going to be teaching lessons in the Daytona Beach area anytime soon

  12. #12
    Ibreathe Music Advisor EricV's Avatar
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    Seriously... a few hours? Wow, that's great insight for me to gain..
    Well, I didnīt exactly notice that at first... but I remember when I was working sweep-stuff while at GIT... there was this cool exercise based on an Eminor arp, and I wanted to nail it.
    So, around noon I started working on it, and did that for like an hour, taking little breaks in between.
    Then, a friend came over and brought a video, which we watched... while I was doing that exercise. Thatīs another two hours, I only took a few little breaks in between to get something to drink or smoke a cig.
    Then, at night, I sat outside with that friend, with aguitar in hand. Altogether, I did that lick for hours, but it didnīt seem like that cuz I went from focussed practising to "noodling it" while doing other stuff back to focussed practising.
    That way, you wonīt lose attention. And those little breaks help to get away from it for a sec, and to have time to relax.
    And that is what I do a lot... just an example.
    Eric

  13. #13
    Ibreathe Music Advisor EricV's Avatar
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    Are you going to be teaching lessons in the Daytona Beach area anytime soon
    Not that I know of, but then again, who knows. I have been to Daytona a few years ago, vacationing with my girlfriend at the time.
    I loved it, and I might be back. If that happens anytime soon, Iīll sure let you know
    Eric

    NP: Marillion- Brave

  14. #14
    Registered User chris's Avatar
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    Originally posted by EricV
    If that happens anytime soon, Iīll sure let you know
    Eric
    Yes, please do let me know Eric as I'd love to have a lesson or two from you so you can give me some expert pointers and advice.

  15. #15
    Ibreathe Music Advisor EricV's Avatar
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    A cheap way to make a metronome

    LOL, well, if anyone wants to really have a completely "custom-made" metronome, you can use Powertab to create one. Check the ptb attached to this post.
    Measure 1 has a whole tone rest, and that bar is played 15 times, at 60 bpm. This sums up to one minute. Then the program skips to bar 2, which is pretty much the same, but at 64 bpm and more repeats.
    This continues. Each bar is repeated for approx. 1 minute. So itīs pretty much the same as the YMetronome-thingy. If you like the idea, simply edit the ptb for your own purposes...
    Oh, and of course, youīll have to switch on the Powertab-metronome... that little metronome-button on the upper right... otherwise you wonīt hear anything
    Eric
    Attached Files Attached Files

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