Ear Training Blog by Bruce Arnold for Muse Eek Publishing Inc. Key Retention

Connecting Ear Training to Arpeggios

Connecting Ear Training to Arpeggios

Goal Two:

Connecting Ear Training to Arpeggios is the next goal with practicing ear training as you practice on your instrument. The first step is to apply singing to some common exercises. A typical exercise students do is to play arpeggios, so let’s look at getting some ear training going with arpeggios. Two initial exercises are a good place to start. Again, use a C MetroDrone® set at 50 BPM and play two notes of each arpeggio for each beat of the MetroDrone®. Again watch your technique so that you have ergonomic movement. Now try to sing the arpeggio. If it was a C Major 7 arpeggio you would sing Do, Me, So and Ti. Initially you want to learn 9 arpeggios all in C:

  • C Major 7 = 1, 3, 5, 7
  • C Minor 7 = 1, b3, 5, 7
  • C Dominant = 1, 3, 5, b7
  • C7sus4 = 1, 4, 5, b7
  • C-7b5 = 1, b3, b5, b7
  • C Dim7 = 1,b3, b5, bb7
  • C-Major 7 = 1, b3, 5 7
  • C Major 7#5 = 1, 3, #5, 7
  • C7#5 = 1, 3, #5, b7

I would tackle one new arpeggio each week in the key of C. The ultimate goal is to play all of these arpeggios in all twelve keys. I would move cycle 5 i.e. C, F, Bb, Eb, Ab, Db, Gb, B, E, A, D to learn them in all keys. This will really help with connecting ear training to arpeggios

Another exercise you can do as you are adding arpeggios in C each week, is playing and singing roots of a chord progression. Let’s take a classic progression in C. I, vi, ii, V I . In C that would be C, A-, D-, G7, C. We are only going to play and then sing the roots of every chord. First find C, A, D, G and C roots on your instrument. Put on a C MetroDrone® at 50 BPM so that you hear all of these notes in the key of C. Play one note for every sound of the MetroDrone®. Once you have completed that, it’s time to sing these notes. Again, try out of time first, then with the C MetroDrone® sounding try to first sing the note “C” call it “Do” and then check if you are right on your instrument. Then move to “A” or “La, then “D” or “Re” and finally “G” or “So.” Continue doing this every day until you build up the ability to start singing the notes in time with the MetroDrone®.

The next step in connecting ear training to arpeggios is to sing the root and 5th of each chord of the C. I, vi, ii, V I progression. So for C, the notes would be “C” or “Do” and “G” or “So.” Next, the A minor chord will be “A” or “La” and “E” or “Me.” Then the D minor chord which will be “D” or “Re” and “A” or “La” and finally G7 will be “G” or “So” and “D” or “Re.” That will take time to master and sing and play in time but you have 9 arpeggios to learn in the meantime so by the time you are done with those you should be able to sing through a C, A-, D-, G7, C singing the roots and 5th of each chord in the key center and in time.

The Historic Precedents Of This Kind Of Music Education

You might enjoy checking out the “Music Education Genealogy Chart” located on my artist’s site. You will clearly see the historic progression of pedagogy that is the basis for Muse Eek Publishing Products. Great musicians throughout history have been studying the ideas presented by Muse-eek.com which derives its content from a a lineage that stretches back to Scarlatti!

Bruce Arnold playing a harmonic on a guitar for Bruce Arnold Blog entry on Muse Eek Publishing Website Music Theory Guided Tour, Connecting Ear Training to Arpeggios

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About Muse Eek

Muse-Eek Publishing Company is a publishing house with a broad focus on music education. Muse-Eek also publishes fine art and poetry books, and has its own record label, Muse-Eek Records. Our online presence, Muse-Eek.com specializes in the publication of music workbooks, video courses and sound and video recordings that teach the foundation of good musicianship through groundbreaking and innovative methods along with traditional methods that have been taught for centuries. These historic methods date back through centuries of great musicians and educators. To see these interesting relationship please see Bruce Arnold's Music Education Genealogy Chart which tells you a lot about the where many of his educational ideas took root and some of the educational pillars that are evident throughout the books you find on this website. The Muse-Eek Records catalogue contains a diverse selection of music much of it by Bruce Arnold in collaboration with some of today's best players in classical, jazz, rock and avant-garde music. These are available in CD, DVD and mp3 formats. We believe in a working relationship with our music education customers; they are free to interact with the author after purchasing a book to help them through any material they don’t understand or which they need further clarification. We also have a member's area which contains a wealth of free information to help a student understand music at a deeper level and access additional files for our books. Many of our books offer cutting edge ideas regarding ear training, guitar technique, rhythm and time. These methods have a proven track record. Our main author Bruce Arnold has taught at some of the most prestigious music schools in the world, including Princeton, Dartmouth, Berklee College of Music, New England Conservatory, The New School and NYU. Along with Mr. Arnold's publications on the Muse-eek.com website he has also written books and appeared in educational DVDs for MelBay and Truefire. Over the years Mr Arnold has used his experiences with his students to develop a program that can elevate a musician's ability to world class caliber. If you have questions about any of our books or recordings please send us an email. Along with general questions about either our record label or our publishing company we also welcome questions to help a student choose the proper materials to reach their goals. We have over 300 products to help you learn any style of music and to develop your musicianship to its peak. We also make recommendations for practice schedules for students who use our methods to get the most out of their study time. This, along with personal interaction with Bruce through email, nurtures the student's ability through a closely monitored situation, ensuring there is no wasted time or misunderstanding.