Intonation CD stuff

I am selling a CD of single note and beatless chord drones to practice intonation. It works great for me and any students that have used it. Just so you guys know this is not a way to learn how to play fast or crafty. It is a way to learn how to focus your hearing so you can play in tune along to whatever gets tossed at you. Its not geared towards any particular tuning. Whatever tuning you use will work fine. The Cd is a series of long droning notes and chords that you practice very very slowly along to while listening to hear if the notes you are playing create beats or sound out of tune. It is a way to train your ears to hear into the tonal center of what you are playing along with. The droning chords are great because you can easily hear how each note in the scale can be in tune or out of tune if you play slowly enough and learn how to listen. It is like being able to tune with harmonics (you know that beating sound that gets slower the closer to pitch you get) to every note in a scale.

Here is a link to a thread about the CD on the Steel guitar forum:

Insert instructions:
Long Tones and Chords for Ear Training

The purpose of these tones is to improve how you focus your attention to pitch as you play steel guitar. There is no need to change how you tune your steel or change any of your personal technique. This is all about how you listen and react to pitch.

What I do is:

  1. Loop the first track and have the A note drone at a slightly higher volume that my steel. Then I play an A note and let it sustain. As the note is sustaining I move the bar very slightly in order to hear the beats (like when you tune to harmonics) and then I move the bar to remove the beats. Then I play the next note in the A scale I’m playing and do the same thing. Whatever A scale or lick you want to play will work fine. Once I’m comfortable hearing the beats. I play through the scale and just try to nail it. The main thing is to play as slowly as possible and really listen. Try playing the solo from “Together Again” along to a drone and make each interval last for at least 10 seconds.

  2. After you feel bored with that in a week or so try playing the same thing only have the A drone be the major 3rd of your scale. That would mean you would be playing along in the key of F. It’s going to get a little weird because you will find that your bar is not always perfectly over the fret. But that is a good thing because you are letting your ears tell your hands what to do.

  3. Play a scale one string only then play the same scale across the neck with pedals.

  4. Try a very slow harmonized scale. I learned how to play in tune slants on a lap steel this way. Try it with pedals on your steel.

  5. Play through all the inversions you know of the A major chord. Get rid of the beats on each one. Remember, go slow and make sure you hear what’s going on with each one.

  6. Experiment!

  7. Try it in every key with all the different tones.

With the chords I again play very slow single note phrases and I listen to each note in the chord and try to hear which note inside the chord is beating against the note I’m playing. This might take a little time before you can hear it. I am not blessed with good ears so I needed to train myself. It’s just a matter of learning what to pay attention to as you listen. Feel free to contact me with any questions.

Bob Hoffnar

You can order through Paypal:

Intonation CD US $10

Intonation CD outside US $11

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