Lots of people say, I wish I had a better ear. But they aren’t willing to put in the work to do the training required. Doing ear training has so many benefits to your guitar playing that it’s worth making mistakes and keeping persistence till your brain figures it out.
How does Doing Ear Training Help Your Guitar Playing?
Without a good ear, it’s hard to feel like a musician and feel free within your instrument as well. You will feel restricted with knowing whether what you play sounds good, trying to figure out how to improve a song, struggling to hear separate parts in songs.
Having a good ear is essential to you feeling more like a musician rather than a copycat reading off tabs.
2. Being able to listen to music and play it straight away.
This is a very common request by students and one that people may not realise how much work it can take to get there. The ability to move away from tab to playing a song directly from hearing it. Requires you to have a great ear.
Which brings me onto the next point.
3. Being able to transcribe music
One way to help you with understanding music components, and how melodies and chords form. So that it becomes easier for you to play music directly from hearing is working on your transcribing. Transcribing will help you with your ear training and ear training will help you get faster at transcribing. It’s a great cycle!
4. Improve your ability to improvise on the guitar
Great improvisations involve great technique and also catchy solos. Whether they are melodic or technique focused. It needs to sound good. Being able to translate what you are thinking or imagining in your head onto the guitar is vital.
Being able to hear what’s happening around you, the chords, the backing tracks, the other musicians etc. To make sure your improvisation compliments all of it will improve how well your solos sound in context.
Ear training will help you with all of that.
5. For you to express your emotions well
Being able to express yourself on the guitar is a great feeling. One way to do this is through phrasing when you play. However, no one likes out of tune bends or terrible sounding vibratos. To work out whether what you are playing is good or not. Having a great ear will make sure you can hear yourself well.
6. Help you with writing music
Similar to the idea of improvisation, the better your ear is, the quicker you can be at writing music. Being able to translate what you want to write onto paper. Recognise whether what you have written is any good.
7. Be able to comprehend music.
When your ear develops to a certain point. You can recognise the messages within music itself. When you listen to Beethoven’s symphonies, you will understand the stories he is trying to get across. Having this ability means you can start telling stories of your own through music too.
8. Be able to learn songs quicker
If you have a great ear, your recall ability of music improves. On top of that, you have improved your ability to translate what’s in your head onto the guitar. It’s much quicker for you to start playing a song you remember. Vs someone who only reads tab, and has to have the piece of paper in front of them. Otherwise they can’t remember what chords they need.
9. Being able to play with other people
One of the really awesome things about playing guitar is being able to play with other people. Having a great ear will help you be able to recognise chord progressions, keys, rhythm signatures, how your parts can fit in. How your awesome solo is going to sound like. Etc. etc. There are so many benefits.
The great thing is that with all of the above, it’s a beneficial cycle that goes around. The more you play with other people, the better your ear gets. The more transcribing you do, the better your ear gets. The better your ears are, the more it benefits all these things above!
There are specific exercises you can do to improve your ears. Keep subscribed and I will send you another article regarding specific things you can do to rapidly improve your ears for playing guitar.
Learning to play guitar is more fun when you have the support of a community around you. Guitar Tuition East London based in London, England strives to provide that environment, full of passionate guitar players to help inspire students to improve their guitar playing. With their innovative electric and acoustic guitar lessons that focus on approaching guitar from a holistic point of view, their students benefit from knowing they will make a lot of progress in the school.