Monday, October 3, 2011

Where's 1?

I was just reminded of the many tunes I heard a as a young person that I originally had turned around. That is, I thought they started on beat 1 when they actually began in another part of the bar. A couple of examples would be "I Want to Hold Your hand" (+ of 3), "Walkin" (beat 4), or "Car Wash' (beat 2). It can be quite challenging to "unlearn" when you hear something in the wrong spot. Figuring out where a tune starts in the phrase is part of the detective work we do when learning a tune so use logic (placement of hi-hat etc.) to suss it out correctly the first time.
This whole concept got me thinking about reversing the bass drum and snare drum roles in rock and funk beats. This also occurs in Reggae. This is a great way to freshen up garden variety beats and work on coordination as well as hearing your place in the bar despite "sonic information" to the contrary.

Here's me playing around with this a bit. Hint, it starts on the + of 4.

If I am to be slightly critical of the above example, the time is slightly further "on top" than I would prefer it to be for this type of groove. That said, although I will continue to work on my behind the beat and laid back playing, I do naturally hear the time ahead. That's as much a part of me as my height and eye colour, and like those other two factors, I will accept it as I continue to work with it.

Here's the tune that inspired me.
It actually starts on the + of 3.


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