Can't sync with a metronome


Jay Pham
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Joined: 10/02/20
Posts: 16
Jay Pham
Registered User
Joined: 10/02/20
Posts: 16
12/06/2022 8:00 am

Hi guys,


I'm having this problem. So the instructors on Guitar Tricks always tell us to practice with a metronome. But whenever I turn on the metronome, my mind goes a bit crazy and I keep losing track of the beats. Same thing with a backing track. I can only practice on a full song with the singers' voices or play alongside the guitar sound. Any tips for me? Hope that I made my problem clear to you.


Thank you in advance guys. 


edited
# 1
ChristopherSchlegel
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Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,307
ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,307
12/06/2022 12:09 pm

What is your current skill level?  What songs are you playing along with?


I think most of this issue comes down to familiarity & repetition.  You can follow the singer or guitar part because you know what to expect, you know what you hearing, what it is supposed to sound like & when it happens.  You probably need to acclimate yourself to what a piece of music sounds like without those guiding cues. 


Some of that is just being confident in mapping out the song in your mind ahead of time so you have a clear idea of what you need to play and when you need to play it.


Some of that is just repetition.  You need to play the parts until they become second nature.  Then you can focus on big picture stuff like, where you are in song.  This is the verse.  Four bars until the pre-chorus.  Now I'm in the pre-chorus.  Here's the chorus.  Get ready to return to the verse.  But that can't happen until you are completely confident in your skills to play the parts without having to focus on every little motion or chord change.  


Turn on the metronome & strum a chord to every beat.  Can you do that?  It's a great place to start.


Then try to play a simple chord progression to just the click.  Each chord for 1 bar, then end on A.


A / D / A / E  / A


Can you do that?


How about each chord for 2 bars?


A / A / D / D / A / A / E / E / A


Let me know if that helps & how it goes!


Christopher Schlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor

Christopher Schlegel Lesson Directory
# 2
LisaMcC
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Joined: 11/02/06
Posts: 3,957
LisaMcC
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Joined: 11/02/06
Posts: 3,957
12/11/2022 6:55 pm

Hi Jay,


Christopher offers some great advice.


I too find playing to a metronome tricky, because the metronome feels and sounds so mechanical, and not so 'musical'. 


It is, however, a super-powerful skill to stick with and learn.


It sounds like you are making good progress, however, with playing along with more "musical" guidelines (like the full-band track). 


Have you ever tried playing with just a drum track?


It's purely percussive (like the metronome - no notes or words or chords), but it has a musical groove that can sometimes be helpful to tyr to align your playing with.


Just a thought.


All best wishes, and have fun! - Lisa


Lisa McCormick, GT Instructor
Acoustic, Folk, Pop, Blues

Full Catalog of Lisa's Guitar Tricks Tutorials
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# 3
rigamonk
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Joined: 10/13/10
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rigamonk
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Posts: 2
12/01/2023 5:27 pm

https://www.wiseguitar.com/#workout has scales, etc...but an extra perk is that it has an adjustable metronome, meaning you can not only adjust the rate, but it offers a simple drum track to go along with the beat as well as the traditional "Click"


 


Hope this helps


# 4
languidsoy
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Joined: 12/04/23
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languidsoy
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Joined: 12/04/23
Posts: 1
12/04/2023 8:05 am

The majority of this problem, in my opinion, is repetition and familiarity.  You can follow along with the singing or guitar part because you are aware of what to anticipate, what you are hearing, how it should sound, and when it should happen.  It's likely that you'll have to get used to the sound of a piece of music without such indications. 


 


# 5
hoodselina44
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Joined: 01/02/24
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hoodselina44
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Posts: 1
01/02/2024 4:45 am

Facing problems when practicing with a metronome and backing track is a common challenge. Here are some of my suggestions to help you overcome this problem:


1. Breaking down the Music Parts:


Instead of trying to play the entire song, break it down into small parts and focus on practicing one part at a time.


2. Reduce Speed:


Start at a slower pace. Once you comfortably settle into the rhythm, gradually increase the speed.


3. Using Metronome at Low Speed:


Start at a low speed on the metronome and gradually increase as you feel comfortable.


4. Play along with the Original Guitar:


Try playing along to the original music or the singer's recording to get a feel for the musical structure and rhythm.


5. Pay Attention to Off-Beats:


Focus on listening to off-beats to stay steady in the beat.


6. Practice Listening to Accompaniment Music:


Listen to the accompaniment regularly to familiarize yourself with the structure and rhythm of the song.


7. Play With Recording:


If possible, play along with the recording for support from the original music.


8. Accept Mistakes:


Sometimes accepting mistakes is important to progress. Keep practicing and correcting mistakes over time.


# 6

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