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Theory VS Feeling

Discussion in 'Sidewinders Bar & Grille' started by MayerFan, Sep 8, 2011.

  1. louis cyfer

    louis cyfer i know nothing

    Oct 2, 2010
    arcadia
    why do they call it the nashville system? it is basically the same as the classical numbering system.
     

  2. Krab

    Krab ----------------------

    Oct 31, 2010
    Because when I was growing up in WV that is what the local session guys were calling it. all it was were numerals over the lyrics and they would pick a key as they went. I had to learn to play that way as well since i was jamming with the country players at the two guitar shops. Four of them went to Nashville two with Billy Ray and two with John and Amy Wiggins.
     

  3. AWH-NJ

    AWH-NJ Senior Stratmaster

    Aug 23, 2010
    Parts Unknown
    :D:D


    Great points there. Perfect example of a situation where theory knowledge comes in extremely handy. We do that a lot at practice with my cover band when learning songs. Or sometimes we call out the actual progression, or one person makes a chart for everyone that might say Verse=|Am|F|C|G|, Chorus=|F|C|Dm7|G| and so on.... Nonetheless it is much faster than one person showing everyone where to put their hands. If we did it that way it would be a real pain for our keyboardist!


    It is the same idea. The difference is the way it's written; they use regular numbers instead of roman numerals. So instead of, for example, I-iim7-iii-IV-V7-vi-vii* you end up with 1-2m7-3-4-5(7)-6-7*. I don't know why they did it that way, maybe it's better if you are bad with Roman numerals? But I personally prefer the Roman Numeral system using capitals and lower case to represent major/minor.

    A lot of people (myself included at times, depending on who I am talking to) call it Nashville Numbers but write them as Roman numerals anyway. "Nashville Numbers" has a nice ring to it too. :D
     

  4. Bluezman

    Bluezman Senior Stratmaster

    Mar 7, 2011
    Virginia

  5. AWH-NJ

    AWH-NJ Senior Stratmaster

    Aug 23, 2010
    Parts Unknown
    Pauln, great first post, well done, welcome aboard! I get what you are saying. I've gotten to the point where it's a combination of verbal, visual, and sound; they all tie together. For me, the theory is always there. It's a way to identify the DNA of music so to speak. But it doesn't govern, inhibit, restrict, or limit what I allow myself to play. It is just a tool to get a mental grasp on what I am actually playing. It's not like I'm thinking about it when I write a song. It's kinda just there lurking in the background.

    At times I draw certain things from it. For example If I am playing around with a riff in a harmonic minor scale, I know how the chords in that system are built so as I work out my chord progressions, I start out with the chords naturally built off that scale (i, ii*, III+, iv, V7, VI, vii*). Later on I may or may not play around with alterations and substitutions (using chords outside that framework).

    Note you have 2 full diminished 7th chords, an augmented chord, and 2 major chords a half step apart. The sound is a lot different than the regualr diatonic system. And all that difference is caused by one little note being different; in A-minor for example, your notes are A-B-C-D-E-F-G, in A-Harmonic Minor you have A-B-C-D-E-F-G#. It's interesting to me to make the connections an see/hear how that one little note has an effect on the entire chord structure.

    Another example would be simply where I'm playing a song and a solo comes up at some point. Since I know the backing chords and what key they are in, I have a general idea of what is going to "automatically" sound good over it, and what I do might come out different every time. But I can just jump right into it without thinking about what I'm going to play. What I end up playing just comes out and it flows with how I'm feeling the song as a whole in the moment.

    I don't care if every note I play is technically in key or not, because the only rule I go by is "if it sounds good, it IS good". There is the assumption that "theorists" won't play notes/chords that aren't in key, but those who truly understand theory's purpose know that there aren't any limits on what you are "allowed" to do.

    Feeling should always be there. Theory you either know or you don't. There is no argument between the two. They have nothing to do with each other. One doesn't affect the other. It's as preposterous as saying Good Tone VS. Good Timing, or Good Technique VS Good Pickups.
     

  6. carver

    carver The East Coast Strangler Strat-Talk Supporter


    man i fully agree, it looks stupid when you dont know what you are doing, and so far i havent been thrown into a live "jam band" type of situation as the styles i play normally dont call for it. it think they are neat.
    however the people i have been playing with we have been playing together for going on 12 years and we know what each other will do before we do it. we can do the jam band thing just from understanding each others as players.
    if you and i were to get on a stage and look at each other and start jamming, we are two dudes that dont know each other from out postman,... thats when being able to say as you state in a few short words get everyone on the same page and who can argue with that being a good thing.
    its just not relevant to whats going on around me in my musical life.
    as ive said in other posts, theory has its place, and you cant do the deed with out knowing a touch of both if you realize it or not.
     

  7. pauln

    pauln Senior Stratmaster

    Sep 14, 2011
    Houston
    Thanks for the kind words. This looks like a great place!

    When I'm performing I'm often playing songs I'm hearing for the first time with musicians with whom I've never played before.

    My personal preference on stage is to NOT hear them name the key or indicate the progression and song structure. I'll know those as I hear them, and what gets called or signed is often incorrect. If I do overhear their pre-talk, I take it all with a grain of salt... I have experienced so much of people calling the wrong chords or holding up fingers indicating the incorrect Nashville numbers.

    On the other hand, I've also watched the pre-talk about a song get waved off by some bass players because they expect to follow the progression changes by watching for standard first position and barre chords on my guitar. But I rarely use those - the roots of most of the chords I play are either absent, voiced away from the bottom, or otherwise not readily identifiable by sight from the shape of my hand.

    When that happens I simplify chords for a verse or two in order to visually present the roots to help the bass player. The whole purpose of the complex chords is to make the other musicians sound better within the context of the song. There is nothing I love more than seeing the look of "enlightenment" on the face of a sax or guitar player as they realize that their "ordinary" solo has now changed into an extraordinary solo with only the substitution of more complex chords underneath their playing.

    That is the feeling I live for - the real magic of music - watching people evolving into better musicians in real time moments as they perform on stage.
     

  8. Fender Bender

    Fender Bender Strat-O-Master

    726
    Sep 29, 2009
    Kansas City, MO
    I know some theory, and it helps in some aspects of my playing. some of it is just frustrating tho. Modal chord progressions have me pretty confused at the moment.


    either way, no matter how you play....all that matters is it sounds good, and it's fun. depending on how drunk the crowd is, the order of those two are reversible. LOL
     

  9. AWH-NJ

    AWH-NJ Senior Stratmaster

    Aug 23, 2010
    Parts Unknown
    fezz parka and Paperback Rocker like this.

  10. davidKOS

    davidKOS Retired Performer Strat-Talk Supporter

    May 28, 2012
    California
    Yes. His father wrote one for him and his sister.

    Mozart senior also had written a violin method and theory book still in use.

    Young Mozart also studies scores by Bach and others.

    Yes he got out the theory books.
     
    RichieS, Boognish, fezz parka and 8 others like this.

  11. Paperback Rocker

    Paperback Rocker Nitro-mancer

    Sep 18, 2014
    Victoria TX
    Look into Frank Gambale, and also harmonizing modes.
     
    Fender Bender likes this.

  12. mshivy

    mshivy Most Honored Senior Member

    I hate both

    I very much enjoy emotionless atonal noise.
     
    davidKOS, gwjensen, CigBurn and 4 others like this.

  13. ripgtr

    ripgtr Senior Stratmaster

    Feb 16, 2012
    austin
    This is an old thread, but it should have stopped right here, lol.
    Theory is a tool to help you make music. Music is an expression of emotion. Better tools/skills help you do that better.
    Done.
     

  14. Believer7713

    Believer7713 Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    43
    Dec 27, 2016
    US
    So you're saying you prefer 12 tone. Lol

    I know there is a lot of theory here but I'm going with the noise part.
     
    mshivy likes this.

  15. circles

    circles Senior Stratmaster

    You need a little bit of theory to play anything (that other people will listen to), but the deeper you understanding of theory, the more complicated you can make your musical sculptures, and have a wider palette in which to express the feelings you want to convey. I feel that's my theory.
     
    Boognish, ZlurkCorzDog and Omar like this.

  16. Omar

    Omar Most Inquisitive Junior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

    606
    Aug 9, 2017
    Marbella, Spain
    Playing with knowledge is good. Theory won't harm you.
     

  17. Bluestrat83

    Bluestrat83 Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    34
    611
    Jan 17, 2016
    Ecuador
    Haaa zombie thread!
    Everybody needs to study their thing,the more you have the better. Reading the comments I feel that some people is trying to justify not learning theory and yes there’s a lot of great musicians that didn’t study but times are different now. There is only one J. Page, one Hendrix, one clapton, one EVH or whatever and Pop and marketing is ruling the business so there’s a chance that “making it” is harder now. But you still need a gig right? To do that you have to know your instrument well enough theory or no theory. Take John Mayer, Dereck Trucks, Bonamassa, Josh Smith, Eric Gales they all have “the feeling” in his way but they also know their scales, play chord changes, SING and know the whole guitar fretboard. If someone is willing to do do that without learning theory it’s very fine and respectable but in my opinion the best players are the ones that spend hours getting to know their instrument completely. It’s not just feeling it’s lots of hard work.... no reason to be lazy that’s all I’m saying....
     
    Omar likes this.

  18. amstratnut

    amstratnut Peace thru Music. Strat-Talk Supporter

    Dec 1, 2009
    My house.
    Theory is a word.

    Music is music.

    Play and analyze enough music and you get theory. A bag of knowledge about music. Its super useful. But you have to be able to "hear" music.

    You have to "hear" a V -I resolution etc.

    Sensitivity, dynamic, expression, also come from listening.
     

  19. amstratnut

    amstratnut Peace thru Music. Strat-Talk Supporter

    Dec 1, 2009
    My house.
    What I was trying to say is, ear training goes hand in hand with theory. Being able to hear, identify, put in context, and apply is a crucial part of "theory"
     
    davidKOS, T Guitar Floyd and mshivy like this.

  20. mshivy

    mshivy Most Honored Senior Member

    I think the reason we can have a thread like this is that “music “ has been dumbed down so much

    I’m pretty sure many jazz guitarists couldn’t explain what they do in a classroom type of way, but what they played was more complex that the typically 3 chord 1 scale stuff
    Lennon and McCartney were extremely musical, but I don’t believe they they were classically educated in music