Having trouble with intervals

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by giggedy, Oct 7, 2008.

  1. giggedy

    giggedy Member

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    I've been doing these online interval trainers, and I'm pretty good at a lot of them. I have been having a lot of trouble with the difference between a perfect 4th and perfect 5th however. For this "test", the notes are sounded harmonically, not melodically. Anyone have any hints to tell the difference between the two? I know melodically, I think of the 5th as the beginning of the top gun song.
     
  2. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

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    Is there a reason that you can't sing the notes melodically after you hear them harmonically?
     
  3. giggedy

    giggedy Member

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    I haven't put much time into singing, I'm guessing from your comment that this would help with this.
     
  4. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

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    It doesn't have to be singing, but my point was that you can break the harmonic sound into the individual tones and listen to them melodically.

    Bryan
     
  5. giggedy

    giggedy Member

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    ah, I put my guitar in my hand to help with singing the intervals correctly, and I think it's helping.

    I noticed that the 4th is the beginning of "here come the bride".
     
  6. Guinness Lad

    Guinness Lad Silver Supporting Member

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    The best way to think of intervals is by remembering movie music or really familiar songs. For a 5th I always think of the song the evil guards sang as they marched in the movie "The Wizard of Oz". It was the marching music they were humming before the Lion, Scarecrow and Tin Man went into the castle to save Dorothy.

    When you take tunes that are deeply engrained in your soul you'll have a much better time of remembering it.

    For a minor 3rd I always think of the first notes of "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat" by Charles Mingus and also played by Jeff Beck

    For a major 3rd I think of the notes from the Miles Davis album, "We want Miles" called Jean Pierre, that one is a major 3rd but they play it descending.

    Jaws is a minor 2nd

    I'm sure someone has a list of this stuff, it makes a huge difference, having a reference tune. BTW, I still suck at intervals when played in groups. Playing 3 notes at a time and then singing each note tears me up.
     
  7. dewey decibel

    dewey decibel Supporting Member

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    But is it? :dunno


    It depends how you hear things. You're right in that the first note to the second in "Here Comes the Bride" is a 4th up. But the second note is the root, the key of the tune. So really that first note is a 5th in relation to the key of the tune. What I'm saying is a 5th is an inverted 4th (and vice versa). So it depends how you hear it.

    I've messed around with those interval trainers a bit, and some I can breeze through while others give me trouble. The ones I have a hard time with are the ones that instead of giving you two new notes to compare each time it only gives you one that you have to compare against the last note from the previous example. What happens is I start to hear tonalities and lines and it throws me off.

    Being able to hear the distance between random notes is good, but if you're just starting out I'd focus on learning them in the context of a set harmony/key. For example, learn the sound of a 5th in a given key no matter if it's up or down from the root. This is what's going to be important in your average playing situation and help you learn how harmony works.
     
  8. KRosser

    KRosser Member

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    No matter how you hear it in harmonic context, the opening notes to "Bride" are an ascending perfect fourth.

    No point in confusing things....

    When I studied ear training my teacher had me come up with a song for each of the ascending intervals as well as the descending. This method really works if you learn how to work with it. I enjoyed the exercise - my teacher didn't assign tunes, he made me come up with all of them so they'd have more meaning to my own ear. The only one that really baffled me was an ascending major seventh, and I sorta cheated - the tune I picked had a first and third-note prominent interval of a major seventh, there was just a passing note between them. I still haven't found a tune that starts clean with an ascending major seventh (a descending major seventh was easy - "I Love You" by Cole Porter)
     
  9. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

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    Here's a site that has some examples of 'popular' songs with the intervals pointed out. http://blog.pandora.com/archives/podcast/2007/10/singing_interva.html

    Some of the examples seem a bit off to me, so it might be worth double-checking things.

    EDIT - It looks like I was reading it incorrectly. I couldn't figure out how the first two notes of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" was a major 7th. They aren't claiming it is. Rather, from 'Some' to 'Ov' is a major 7th.

    Bryan
     
  10. dewey decibel

    dewey decibel Supporting Member

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    You're right. I was just trying to give a suggestion as to why things may already be confused, if that makes sense.




    Maybe "Invitation"? (minus the first note...)
     
  11. Dajbro

    Dajbro Member

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    The melody to Ceora by Lee Morgan begins Eb up to D.

    David
     
  12. giggedy

    giggedy Member

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    I like the progress this has taken, thanks guys.
     
  13. bcrsf27

    bcrsf27 Member

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    Which interval trainer does the one-note-compared-to-the-last-note thing? I'd like to try working that drill. Seems like the ones that I'm familiar w/ always do two notes each time.
     
  14. KagakuNinja

    KagakuNinja Member

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    This is awesome, I'll have to try it. I remember scales and modes by linking them to songs I know:

    Minor pentatonic (ascending): Wish You Were Here (Pink Floyd)
    Major pentatonic (descending): Banana Splits Theme
    Minor (ascending): Call Me (Blondie)
    Minor (descending): Some Santana song
     
  15. KRosser

    KRosser Member

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    Thank You! Thank you! How did I miss that? I like that song....

    IIRC, this was my list -

    m2nd - up - In Love In Vain (Kern)
    down - Stella By Starlight (Young)

    M2nd - up - Happy Birthday
    down - Too Young To Go Steady (McHugh)

    m3rd - up - Moanin' (Timmons)
    down - Hey Jude (Lennon/McCartney)

    M3rd - up - Rhythm-a-ning (Monk)
    down - Summertime (Gershwin)

    P4th - up - Someday My Prince Will Come (Churchill)
    down - Softly As In A Morning Sunrise (Romberg)

    A4th/D5th - up - Maria (Bernstein)
    down - Blue Seven (Rollins)

    P5th - up - You Don't Know What Love Is (Raye/DePaul)
    down - The Way You Look Tonight (Kern)

    m6th - up - Theme from Black Orpheus (Bonfa)
    down - Theme From Love Story (Lai)

    M6th - up - The Days Of Wine And Roses (Mancini)
    down - Crazy (Nelson)

    m7th - up -Somewhere (Bernstein)
    down - Watermelon Man (Hancock)

    M7th - up - Ceora (Morgan) - THANKS DAJBRO!
    down - I Love You (Porter)

    P8 - up - Somewhere Over The Rainbow (Arlen)
    down - Willow Weep For Me (Ronell)

    My old choice for ascending M7th was September Song by Kurt Weill but that was a bit of a cheat....
     
  16. drfrankencopter

    drfrankencopter Member

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    You can get a M7 by thinking of 'Somewhere Over the Rainbow", but omitting the "where". Kind of a kludge, but it works...for a tough interval.

    Cheers

    Kris
     

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