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 metronomes
Author: angella 
Date:   1999-08-05 00:33

what's a good metronome- besides the dr. beat for like 250 dollars! i had a matrix, it's fine, but sitting on the stand, has gotton flung off so many times, the light doesn't work and it has to be held together with tape-- though it still clicks. i'm wondering if one that subdivides different beats is good or necessary- after all, i should be able to do that myself, but.... any thoughts? i kind of like the yamaha one that looks like a flying saucer.

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 RE: metronomes
Author: Hiroshi 
Date:   1999-08-05 01:10

Taktell super mini 24.95$ at WWandBW. Pendulum style not an ectronics gimmic.You can see the pendulum moving and this helps a feeling of a rythm.

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 RE: metronomes
Author: Daniel 
Date:   1999-08-05 02:15

The Dr. Beat (DB-66) can be bought for around $125 nowadays. And the newer model, the DB-88 is only in the $150's. I'd like the new DB-88 except for the optional voice counting OR ticking. The new one can be programmed to do a certain combinations of meters and play it back while you practice something like Jettel or the like. But otherwise, i think the plain DB-66 is the best metronome on the market for it's price (which will continue to go down over time).

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 RE: metronomes
Author: Daniel 
Date:   1999-08-05 02:17

The electronic metronomes have lights to give you a visual feel of the beat. Pendulum style metronomes don't have the volume to hear them if you play forte. And over time they begin becoming uneven and it turns time to buy a new one.



Hiroshi wrote:
-------------------------------
Taktell super mini 24.95$ at WWandBW. Pendulum style not an ectronics gimmic.You can see the pendulum moving and this helps a feeling of a rythm.

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 RE: metronomes
Author: Rick2 
Date:   1999-08-05 05:35

I have one called Matrix MR-600. I forget what I paid, but the figure $35 comes to mind. It doubles as a tone generator. It has the lights, but oddly enough, when I mentioned the visual aspect of a metronome to my instructor, he placed it behind the book so I could only hear it. I can see a lot of merit in removing the visual aspect of it. I don't think you need much more than something that will tick at the speed you want loud enough to hear. Save the extra $100 and spend it on reeds.



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 RE: metronomes
Author: Rick2 
Date:   1999-08-05 05:39

I just reread your original post. If you read my previous post, you'll know that my instructor would tell you to use the one you have and stop looking at the lights. He'd also tell you to count, not rely on a metronome for the half and quarter beats. I tend to agree with that. My humble opinion.

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 RE: metronomes
Author: angella 
Date:   1999-08-05 06:23

interesting. i'm not sure why you'd take away the visual aspect, when that's what you're supposed to do... watch the conductor as opposed to just relying on what you hear.

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 RE: metronomes
Author: HIROSHI 
Date:   1999-08-05 07:05

Metronome is very convenient tool to speed up but for other purposes I dislike to use one. If we have superb technical fluency(I do not have) already it will not do anything. Or rather too much dependence on them might jeopadize our sense of rythm we naturally have and make our playing mechanical or monotonous. Especially the sense of free and minute agogics some of the best artists have will not coume up. I doubt Moyse or Cahuzac themselves used metronomes. Maybe it was invented for also-runs players without rythmic sense to catch up the betters in 17th(?) century.

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 RE: metronomes
Author: Ken Shaw 
Date:   1999-08-05 17:48

HIROSHI wrote:
-------------------------------
Metronome is very convenient tool to speed up but for other purposes I dislike to use one. If we have superb technical fluency(I do not have) already it will not do anything. Or rather too much dependence on them might jeopadize our sense of rythm we naturally have and make our playing mechanical or monotonous. Especially the sense of free and minute agogics some of the best artists have will not coume up. I doubt Moyse or Cahuzac themselves used metronomes. Maybe it was invented for also-runs players without rythmic sense to catch up the betters in 17th(?) century.


Hiroshi -

I really disagree. You build technical fluency by working on the sequences of notes that you play unevenly or have to slow down for. Identifying these sequences is not easy, and the most efficient method of finding them is to work on scale and chord patterns with a metronome. It's dreadfully medicinal, but if you don't attend to it, you will have constant fluctuations in your playing that are out of control and that you may not even be aware of and can't do anything about.

To play with freedom, you must first have order, so that you know what you're departing from. You should of course never perform like a metronome, but your phrase shaping and nuances should always be exactly what _you_ want rather than being dictated, even partly, by something you aren't in control of.

You are correct that some musicians never go beyond metronomic playing. I have heard far too many recordings of, say, the slow movement of the Brahms Quintet, by some big name players, that have everything perfectly even but completely miss the rhapsodic elements. That's dreadful, but even worse is to hear someone (Thea King, for example) audibly struggling with difficult passages, content just to get through no matter how distorted or uneven it has to be.

Of course you would never perform with, or like, a metronome, but its use is essential to build a solid, even technique. A tree needs roots and a trunk just as much as it needs leaves.

Ken Shaw

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 RE: metronomes
Author: angella 
Date:   1999-08-05 20:41

I AGREE!

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 RE: metronomes
Author: lis 
Date:   1999-08-06 04:28

I agree with Ken and angella.
Even though everything about my little credit card style metronome annoys me, I use it every time I practice my scales. I do it because I know it helps make them more even, and it has also helped me get faster.
Also, I have to play Stravinsky's Octet for auditions to determine which band I will be in for school.....I just the music a week ago and I practice it with the metronome set to count in 16th notes, then on 8th notes, and the I do it without the metronome. When I get comfortable with HOW to count it, then I can make it musical.
I am looking into getting a Dr. Beat though!!

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 RE: metronomes
Author: Rick2 
Date:   1999-08-06 04:52

Angela,

turning off the visual hasnothing to do with watching a conductor. It has everything to do with developing an internal sense of rhythm. I just heard an interview with a modern conductor today on NPR's Performance Today. One of the points he made was that a good conductor does not keep the beat. Any reasonably good orchestra will be able to do that on its own after the first few measures. The conductor is helping with the dynamics, with the subtlties of the music, cueing this or that section to come in at just the right time.

Every one of us is either a rusher or a dragger. I'm a rusher. I can get a beat ahead of where I should be. To fix that you need to count and to count with a metronome, with and without the instrument. To count properly you need to be looking at the notes, not at the metronome.

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 RE: metronomes
Author: Hiroshi 
Date:   1999-08-06 05:41

I almost agree with Ken. Using metronome to practice scale or arppeggios,even Rose 40 or 32,and above all to acquire evenness is indispensable. What I tried to say was in short: "Try practicing without a metronome using only our sense 'sometime'."
The most important thing is to bring up a sense of rythm inside ourselves including legato evenness. This sense is produced by metronome partly of course by this machine and other part are unfortunately each person's in-born talent. If we 'always' use metronome during our individual practice session, we cannot obtain a knack of how to use our built up sense of rythm. It is necessary to play especially etudes without a metronome 'sometime'. As Ken stated evenness is very important and the starting point of playing such tune like 1st movement of Mozart concerto. However, evenness is not everything.Everyone who makes MIDIs, he or she will understand how monotonous the music becomes by evenness.It is because there are several techniques used even in Baroque music to break evenness such as 'inegalite'. Inegalite(unequalness in French) was used quite often to avoid monotonous playing music such as by Bach. This means, for example, if 16th notes are written for one beat on the sheet,do not play them evenly,the first should be very slightly played longer and accent.
There are several other tempo breaking playing techniques music academy students today will surely study. I guess these will not be learned depending on a metronome.
Of course these are high level skills for amateurs to aim at.
p.s.To tell you the truth, my farther, a proffessional bassonist, told this to me in my boyhood. Unfortunately,I became an Engineer who could not attaing such high level skills.

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 RE: metronomes
Author: angella 
Date:   1999-08-06 05:59

rick-
of course. but not everyone has an impecible inner sense- and at times tend to rely on thier ears, which creates discrepency within the orchestra.... that's *partially* what a conductor is good for, besides all you mentioned.

the metronome is our friend.

have a nice weekend.

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