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#1881986 - 04/18/12 09:12 PM Swing question for teachers
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7348
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Each year, I treat my students to learning a couple of pop or jazz selections, as we have a community-wide Pop, Jazz & Duet Fest. When teaching swing, do you find it works better to have the students learn the notes first, then add the swing, or just dive in and learn the music with the swing rhythm? Generally, I do the latter, but have been wondering if students would have faster results note learning first.
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
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#1882036 - 04/18/12 10:32 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Barb860 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/09
Posts: 1646
Loc: northern California
Hi John, I teach the swing rhythm first and then add the notes.
It's easier to correct notes than it is to correct rhythm IMO.
So I am assuming it could take longer to teach notes first and then change the rhythm to swing.
Do you find that when you change the rhythm, the student then misses notes?
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#1882073 - 04/19/12 12:07 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
I always swing it. It really helps to do some echo practice in that first lesson, one or two measures at a time. Once they get the feel of it, it usually works for the rest of the piece.
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#1882121 - 04/19/12 02:26 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
ten left thumbs Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/22/09
Posts: 3336
Loc: Scotland
As a beginner-guitarist I find it much easier to learn the notes straight, and only swing once I am confident of the notes. The reason? It's hard to go quick from off-beat to on-beat when my fingers are still finding their way.

I'm interested to hear how other teach swing, though.
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#1882124 - 04/19/12 02:36 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Nikolas Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5243
Loc: Europe
I always swing it! It's the rhythm that matters more than the pitches in this instance... (Ok... not THAT much, but the rhythm is hugely important and difficult to grasp for a 'normal close minded' piano student).

Then again knowing you, John, I can safely assume that your students are nothing close to being close minded! ^_^

But... yeah... swing all the way from the beginning. This is the charm of these works!
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#1882136 - 04/19/12 03:41 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
AZNpiano Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5458
Loc: Orange County, CA
Some kids get swing immediately. Some take a bit longer. Some will struggle mightily.
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#1882223 - 04/19/12 08:37 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Ann in Kentucky Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
In all the pieces I teach, we start with rhythm. I want kids to be able to clap and count a piece start to finish. It may only take 2 lines to let me know that they are capable of clapping entire rhythm. If there are words, we clap and speak the words in rhythm.

I tell them that the rhythm is most important (more important than the notes)...that without a rhythm that flows from start to finish it is not music. After they can clap the rhythm, I tell them that they've got half the piece already mastered.


Edited by Ann in Kentucky (04/19/12 08:38 AM)

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#1882233 - 04/19/12 09:09 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11753
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
I have tried both and I find it's much harder to add the swing after learning it straight. It totally changes how the piece sounds and so that can really mess with a student's progress on the piece. Once in a while I get the student that can't swing, in which case I will actually have them learn it straight and then take the time to swing it later. For some reason this helps them.

I do wonder if it would be helpful to see a swing piece that doesn't try to articulate the rhythms accurately as you see sometimes (dotted 8th-16th or quarter-8th triplet) but spaces the notes out accordingly. So you'd still have only 8th notes, but the shorter one would be farther form the longer one and closer to the next beat spatially in the measure.
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#1882241 - 04/19/12 09:21 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Kreisler Offline


Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13775
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Swing isn't a modification of straight, it's a fundamentally different rhythm.

Which begs the question: When teaching any rhythm, would it help to start by teaching a completely different rhythm first?

I think most would answer No.
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#1882243 - 04/19/12 09:24 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3158
Rhythm first!

With a non-swing piece, the rhythm is typically already a known commodity, i.e. non-swing "straight" or normal rhythm. Thus with a new non-swing piece we simply add notes to a rhythm structure that has already been learned and practiced from (hopefully) the onset of lessons.

With a swing rhythm piece it is most often the the rhythm that is not known. The notes may also be "not known", but they are not different from notes in other straight rhythms pieces; Middle C is always middle C, regardless of the rhythm of the piece. Thus the swing rhythm is the big unknown, and should be taught before or during the plugging in of the notes.

Two more thoughts: Such rhythms can be completely foreign to Classical music students, and Rhythm itself is often the hardest thing to learn, especially swing, syncopated, and other rhythms.

Also, I find with swing rhythms that demonstrating them, via listening to a cd, or playing it, is almost always the fastest and most easily learned method. A lot of pop and such pieces have rhythms that do not translate easily, clearly, or perfectly to notation, unlike most classical which does.


Edited by rocket88 (04/19/12 09:55 AM)
Edit Reason: clarity
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#1882287 - 04/19/12 10:45 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
R0B Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/03/08
Posts: 1439
Loc: Australia
I find it usually helps to use a piece/song that they already know really well,(but can't yet play) to demonstrate swing.
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#1882364 - 04/19/12 01:02 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: R0B]
MrsLois Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/19/12
Posts: 75
Loc: Manitoba, Canada
I usually play the piece first for them, and then let them hear a recording (usually works great with Christopher Norton's Connections series), and then commence straight to sight-playing... 9 kids out of 10 will play with the correct rhythm almost immediately, and then if there are any trouble spots, we mark the 'long' 8th notes in highlighter (or whatever's handy at the time!), and work on that section until it's good. For fun, I took the MIDI recordings off the Connections website, and put them onto a CD, and then have the kids either play the whole piece or just the section they have learnt with the CD... they love it, and it really seems to lock the timing into place!

I don't like to separate swing rhythm from the notes themselves, as I find it takes away from the 'ultimate goal' of the piece. Also, I have found that if you teach kids one thing (i.e. swing rhythm), and then get them to try straight rhythm (or vice versa), some kids then think that it is ok not to use the swing rhythm, because you as a teacher told them not to use it this 'one time' (or however many times it takes for them to get it right!), and chances are, that 'one time' will stick with them far more than what you've been drilling into them the rest of the time!

Lois

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#1882370 - 04/19/12 01:07 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7348
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Thanks all for your replies. What prompted the question is a student who came yesterday, and despite a lot of rhythm work last week, had somehow managed to reverse the swing pattern completely! I was using Dennis Alexander's series Especially in Jazzy Style.
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

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#1882572 - 04/19/12 06:30 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Peter K. Mose Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/06/12
Posts: 1337
Loc: Toronto, Ontario
John, it's an interesting question you have posed. Are we talking about a piece in which the swing is not notated, except for maybe a little instruction at the top of the piece inviting the performer to swing? I.e., the notation itself is a classical one and the player is supposed to alter it? In that case, I often try to teach both rhythms, because it's fun to be able to do either at will. If it's already a swing notation, however - i.e., with dotted notes - most of my students would be working so hard to honor this trickier notation that they might have trouble playing it evenly ("straight" or "classical").

The concept of swing I find is generally easy for students over the age of maybe 11 to get, and to do.

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#1882591 - 04/19/12 07:00 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: Peter K. Mose]
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3158
Originally Posted By: Peter K. Mose
Are we talking about a piece in which the swing is not notated, except for maybe a little instruction at the top of the piece inviting the performer to swing? I.e., the notation itself is a classical one and the player is supposed to alter it?


The instruction at the top explaining the swing time in a swing piece that is Classically notated is not an optional choice given to the player to swing it...it is instruction as to how the piece should be played, just as direct an instruction as anything else written, such as the time signature, dynamics, etc.
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#1882653 - 04/19/12 08:34 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: Peter K. Mose]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7348
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Originally Posted By: Peter K. Mose
John, it's an interesting question you have posed. Are we talking about a piece in which the swing is not notated, except for maybe a little instruction at the top of the piece inviting the performer to swing? I.e., the notation itself is a classical one and the player is supposed to alter it? In that case, I often try to teach both rhythms, because it's fun to be able to do either at will. If it's already a swing notation, however - i.e., with dotted notes - most of my students would be working so hard to honor this trickier notation that they might have trouble playing it evenly ("straight" or "classical").

The concept of swing I find is generally easy for students over the age of maybe 11 to get, and to do.

Yes, I find that most publishers these days take that notational short-cut. Thanks for the ideas and I suspect that your age observation is pretty close to the mark.
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

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#1884096 - 04/22/12 05:43 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Ben Crosland Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/11/10
Posts: 419
Loc: Worcester, UK
It's not necessarily used as a short-cut, John!

I have written dozens of swing numbers, and in each case my decision on the mode of notation has been based solely on what feels right. It just happens that one style of notation can communicate the feel of a particular piece far better than another, just in the same way that 3/8 can make more sense than 3/4 in certain situations.

There are four basic choices for scoring swing:

Compound time, simple time with triplets, simple time with straight 1/8ths and instruction to swing, and dotted 1/8ths with instruction to swing.

Each has its own merit, and sometimes it simply comes down to aesthetics, but never just convenience.
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#1884111 - 04/22/12 06:40 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: Ben Crosland]
Exalted Wombat Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 1195
Loc: London UK
Originally Posted By: Ben Crosland
There are four basic choices for scoring swing:

Compound time, simple time with triplets, simple time with straight 1/8ths and instruction to swing, and dotted 1/8ths with instruction to swing.

Each has its own merit, and sometimes it simply comes down to aesthetics, but never just convenience.


I don't think triplets or compound time are ever a good representation of swing. Maybe of that "rolling" gospel/rhythm 'n blues style.

Swing pieces frequently include pairs of straight 8ths. Therefore, unless you're going to litter the score with "Swing" and "Straight" instructions, there seems little practical alternative to the dotted-8th, 16th notation.

In the real world you'll find straight-8 notation with a "Swing" direction (or just an implied one), or dots. Only educators think triplets are "easier"!

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#1884120 - 04/22/12 07:10 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
ten left thumbs Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/22/09
Posts: 3336
Loc: Scotland
It doesn't matter what the composer wanted. All that matters is how the player swings on a particular day.
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I am a competent teacher.


www.justfingers.co.uk
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#1884189 - 04/22/12 09:46 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: ten left thumbs]
Scott Coletta Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/07/11
Posts: 514
Loc: Chicago
Originally Posted By: ten left thumbs
It doesn't matter what the composer wanted. All that matters is how the player swings on a particular day.


I think this is getting closer to the truth. smile

Not trying to stir the pot, but I don't believe there is any way to "properly" notate swing. The jazz masters don't try to do it... so I'd say it can't be done. Also, it's definitely NOT correct to play it as dotted eighth - sixteenth. Triplets are closer. But the subtleties of swing vary with tempo and style and just don't fit within the methods of traditional notation.

Teaching swing is something that is largely misunderstood. Hopefully, someday a good approach will get nailed down and spread around, but in the meantime... I guess we'll just do the best we can.

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#1884226 - 04/22/12 10:46 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: Scott Coletta]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7348
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Originally Posted By: Scott Coletta
Teaching swing is something that is largely misunderstood.

Thus, my question. There are often 3 or 4 pieces in these student "jazz" collections which indicate "swing." They give students who never come in contact with this part of the music world a taste of it, but it's only superficial at best.

Ben, just a thought on your comments. I'm guessing that most music published these days are using computer generated graphics, and so notation is limited to the offerings of the software. I've never seen what you suggest in teaching pieces anyway. Most, I dare say, 90% - 95%, have a notation at the beginning to either "swing" the piece or the double eighth notes equal quarter & eighth with a slur and 3 above it.
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

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#1884299 - 04/22/12 01:18 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Ben Crosland Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/11/10
Posts: 419
Loc: Worcester, UK
Well, out of the 41 pieces in my Get Set Jazz books, 20 have a swing feel to them, and there are precisely four that are scored in compound time - two use a similar LH pattern that I think of as "cowboy blues" - [C GA G] as [1/4, 1/8, 1/4, 1/8], and the other two have a high incidence of complete triplet figures throughout.

This whole issue was certainly something which I put considerable thought to, when I put the books together. I also consulted other teachers, to find out their preferences, and also to try to address any shortcomings they perceived in this regard in other popular "jazz/blues pieces for classical students" books, such as Norton's "Microjazz" series, and Wedgwood's "Jazzin' About". Consistently, I was hearing requests for clarity - so I tried to ensure that there was no ambiguity, by specifically stating not only when to swing, but also when not to swing.

See, it's all very well for 'proper' jazz players to talk about how swing can't be notated, which may well be the case, but let's face it - most of us here are teaching predominantly classical music, and the kind of books we use for jazz repertoire are, very often, something akin to Microjazz, Jazzin' About, or whatever. I think of this as a kind of "jazz tourism", and the more help I can give to the student by way of layout, the better, and many transcriptions of jazz standards are hardly ideal either.

For instance, in at least one of my pieces, a fast boogie-woogie number scored in straight quavers, I used the repositioning tool to shift some if the LH notes to better align with the notes in a RH triplet figure. This was at the request of more than one of my teacher friends, who find some traditional boogie scores particularly awkward to read when they don't follow this paradigm.

Another point that Exalted Wombat raised was that many jazz/swing pieces use a combination of straight and dotted eighths. Now, in nearly every case where I have encountered this, it seems to be that the straight notation is employed only for the final beat of a syncopated phrase. I have yet to find any treatise on swing that suggests you should play the final pair of quavers as straight, and, to me at least, it never feels natural to do so when the rest of the phrase is swung. Thus, I can only assume that it is done for aesthetic, rather than interpretational purposes.
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#1884316 - 04/22/12 01:49 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
ten left thumbs Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/22/09
Posts: 3336
Loc: Scotland
My personal preference, for beginners, for jazz tourists, is for the music to be written straight with the instruction to swing. The dotted, the compound time, the triplets, I have found all these to confuse. Here's the explanation I give.

A crotchet gets one beat, if there are quavers, each gets half a beat. Like we have a pizza and we share it equally, we cut it down the middle, I get a half, you get a half. That's classical music.

Jazz is different. I walk into the kitchen, there's a pizza there for us to share. But I'm hungry so I eat more than my fair share. I eat about this much. And you only get that much. So when you swing, the first quaver gets a bit more than the second quaver.

Then I demonstrate both strategies.

It helps initially if the phrases start on the beats.

So far, everyone's got it.
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www.justfingers.co.uk
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#1884317 - 04/22/12 01:50 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Kreisler Offline


Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13775
Loc: Iowa City, IA
There aren't really any limitations in the software these days. William Gillock's "New Orleans Jazz Styles" often use dotted 8th-16th notation to show swing. A new piece of mind for FJH's "In Recital" series just came out and shows the swing rhythm in 6/8.

Ben's four choices are pretty much all that there are - I can't think of any other way to notate swing, and those four ways do the job just fine.

And swing is like anything else - the experience comes before the notation, not from it.

Originally Posted By: John v.d.Brook
Ben, just a thought on your comments. I'm guessing that most music published these days are using computer generated graphics, and so notation is limited to the offerings of the software. I've never seen what you suggest in teaching pieces anyway. Most, I dare say, 90% - 95%, have a notation at the beginning to either "swing" the piece or the double eighth notes equal quarter & eighth with a slur and 3 above it.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#1884480 - 04/22/12 06:24 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: Ben Crosland]
Exalted Wombat Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 1195
Loc: London UK
Originally Posted By: Ben Crosland
many jazz/swing pieces use a combination of straight and dotted eighths. Now, in nearly every case where I have encountered this, it seems to be that the straight notation is employed only for the final beat of a syncopated phrase. I have yet to find any treatise on swing that suggests you should play the final pair of quavers as straight, and, to me at least, it never feels natural to do so when the rest of the phrase is swung. Thus, I can only assume that it is done for aesthetic, rather than interpretational purposes.



The "Doo-bie doo-bie doo-bie doo-WAH thing I think we're both talking about is often written with the last pair as straight 8s, the first with a tenuto, the second with an accent or staccato dot. As with so many notations, it's a convention rather than something to be mathematically analysed.

We surely owe it to our students to have at least a passing knowledge of this notation, alongside Notes Inégales, double-dots in a French Overture, and all the rest.

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#1884483 - 04/22/12 06:32 PM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Exalted Wombat Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 1195
Loc: London UK
Originally Posted By: John v.d.Brook
Ben, just a thought on your comments. I'm guessing that most music published these days are using computer generated graphics, and so notation is limited to the offerings of the software. I've never seen what you suggest in teaching pieces anyway. Most, I dare say, 90% - 95%, have a notation at the beginning to either "swing" the piece or the double eighth notes equal quarter & eighth with a slur and 3 above it.

Current notation software can cope with everything that's been suggested so far! It can also make a pretty fair job of PLAYING straight 8s with a "Swing" marking, which is as good a reason as any for writing it that way.
I do find an explicit (but, by definition, inaccurate) metric modulation instruction rather ridiculous when one could just write "Swing" or "Swing 8s". Has anyone REALLY been asleep for most of the last 100 years? :-)

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#1884738 - 04/23/12 02:19 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Gary D. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/30/08
Posts: 4783
Loc: South Florida
Originally Posted By: John v.d.Brook
Each year, I treat my students to learning a couple of pop or jazz selections, as we have a community-wide Pop, Jazz & Duet Fest. When teaching swing, do you find it works better to have the students learn the notes first, then add the swing, or just dive in and learn the music with the swing rhythm? Generally, I do the latter, but have been wondering if students would have faster results note learning first.

John, I see I am VERY late to this discussion.

To me swing is a style, a feel, just like playing a waltz, playing any dance form from the Baroque, and students who seem to have a "feel" for it not only also seem to have an especially good rhythm sense - from the get-go- but they are also often exposed to such music at home.

Most of my students have NO feel for swing, at first, so I start on it as a basic concept within the first six months. It happens all over the place. Most people are familiar with the variation in the last movement of the Beethoven Op. 111 that sounds so much like swing in parts, you swear Beethoven must have been channeling a couple centuries ahead. Then there are the even 8ths that are played unevenly in Romantic music, and you can hear that in Rachmaninov's playing of his own piano concertos.

What is unique to me about swing music is the off-beat accents, and I can't think of that happening anywhere in music until the 20th century. Going way back, "In the Mood" is one of the best example I can think of for 1 uh2 uh uh uh uh uh3 uh4 uh1 uh2 uh 3 uh... etc. And if you attempt to play that simple melody on the piano, without at least a metronome, you can hear how those off-beats start to sound as if they are on the beat, or could be if they went on long enough.

That starts to make the importance of a beat, percussion of some kind, really obvious. It shows why pianists who are soloing (no bass, no drums) find ways to punch enough chords on the beat to make clear what is off-beat.

To me the notes first vs rhythm first is chicken/egg thinking. My students miss the notes, at first, and they miss the counting/rhythm, at first. I have to really exaggerate it, which I both teach and demonstrate, starting with:

uh 1.......................................
uh 2.......................................
uh 3.......................................
uh 4.......................................

And it really sounds rather dreadful, but what doesn't, when it is the very first baby step?

The moment I think they have the idea of exaggerating the length of the "long" 8ths, I reverse the process. Meanwhile, I demonstrate it as it should be, to prove that it is all going to work.

Since I write my own music, I START with dotted 8th followed by 16th, but I also give an overview, that this basic rhythm may use a shorter 16th, in Baroque music, in some instances, but means triplets in OTHER instances, and the concept of long short, APPROXIMATE and sometimes EXAGGERATED in notation is a feel and can never be completely accurately notated.

So what I'm doing is presenting simple, short swing ideas, and I add the swing to it ASAP. I don't care if there is a delay, because once the concept is learned and absorbed, later I can switch to the 2 eighths = quarter eight triplet direction, or simply say "don't play this straight, make it swing".

It's just as simple or just as hard as saying:

Play this with a very steady rhythm. No rubato. Then play THIS with rubato. I mean, what the **** is rubato? It's a "feel", absorbed over a long time, the ability to stretch time incredibly while the listener still senses a beat. Do we think, "Oh no, I can't teach anything without rubato? Everything must be learned WITH rubato, from day one?"

Or course not. But once a good sense of rubato is learned, no good player is going to play something that needs it without it, and playing something that should swing "straight" is like playing a Chopin Nocturne with the rhythm of a fast Bach prelude.

My point: it's not about music without rhythm, or rhythm without music. It's about starting the whole concept/feel EARLY!


Edited by Gary D. (04/23/12 02:21 AM)
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#1884862 - 04/23/12 08:40 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7348
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Ben & Kreisler - I think we're talking completely different topics here. You make interesting points.
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#1884869 - 04/23/12 08:56 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: John v.d.Brook]
PianoStudent88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/16/11
Posts: 3170
Loc: Maine
I just came across a swing piece which includes a composer's note that dotted eighth sixteenth is to be played as triplet quarter eighth, and plain eighth notes are to be played straight. Most of the plain eighth notes appear as part of a syncopated figure, either eighth followed by eighth tied to quarter, or (IIRC) eighth quarter eighth.
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#1884900 - 04/23/12 09:57 AM Re: Swing question for teachers [Re: Gary D.]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7348
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Thanks, Gary, for that extensive insight. I doesn't help so much with the immediate problem, but lets me know that next year, I'm going to have to start students way earlier if I'm really going to get them into the feel of the music.
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

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