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 Next Level Stuff 
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Post Re: Next Level Stuff
I've been dealing with many of the issues that you describe from technique to musical styles.

My solution to the playing posture is that I've completely abandoned playing seated. Whenever I practice or play, I stand.
If the practice sessions are longer I find that having a 10min break every 45mins helps a lot and I don't get too tired.

The instrument position for me that's comfortable is more towards the position of a guitar, maybe more vertical, a little more than 45 degrees from the floor - maybe 50 to 55.
The headstock is also a bit more away (forward) from my body.

What also helped my wrists was modifying the belt hook with spacers, so that it's not angled.

This requires that you train to play blindly most of the time, with an occasional glance when doing larger shifts. I was very bad at this at the beginning, but after about 6 months it got much better.
This also is good for the neck if you look straight ahead instead of peeking the fingerboard.

And for the stylistic preferences you mention, I think it's very liberating to forget that you can play two parts at the same time on the stick once in a while.
It frees amazing possibilities of what you can do as a single line with two hands - speed, complexity, the unexpected.

Keep in mind that I'm a beginner still...

Kaspar

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Sat Dec 16, 2017 4:41 am
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Post Re: Next Level Stuff
Carbon wrote:
I've been dealing with many of the issues that you describe from technique to musical styles.

What also helped my wrists was modifying the belt hook with spacers, so that it's not angled.

This requires that you train to play blindly most of the time, with an occasional glance when doing larger shifts. I was very bad at this at the beginning, but after about 6 months it got much better.
This also is good for the neck if you look straight ahead instead of peeking the fingerboard.

It frees amazing possibilities of what you can do as a single line with two hands - speed, complexity, the unexpected.

Keep in mind that I'm a beginner still...

Kaspar


Thank you for the thoughtful post, Kaspar.
One of my main reasons for seeking out comfortable ways to play seated has to do with the concept of placing a straight road directly over a hill...
That's why the band harness was useful; the distance at the bottom end of the stick was farther away.
HOWEVER, I take your points about hand positions, the angle of the instrument, and especially the idea of "playing blindly". Greg Howard made the same suggestion and I did try it for a while, frustrating! But I do know if I stick with it I will master the technique. Being a pianist I learned that lesson long ago and I became a better pianist when I stopped looking at my hands and trusted 'the force' :idea:

As to the idea of letting go of playing two distinct musical ideas simultaneously, one backing up the other, and using both hands toward the same musical expression, I'm 100% with you! Many of my favorite clasiccal composers, as well as fellows like Tony Levin, Kerry Minear, and a number of the stick players I met at last year's get-together, provided masterful examples just asking to be emulated :-)

Thanks again
Cheers
Harry


Sat Dec 16, 2017 3:08 pm
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Post Re: Next Level Stuff
@lminor7
Cool!

Edit to my previous post:
Got to check the neck angle with a CAD program :) Actually it was more vertical than I initially thought - about 60 to 65 degrees.

And also, I found that I adjust the angle a bit, depending where on the fingerboard I play. Like a guitarist (which I was) would bring the neck vertical when soloing on the higher frets.

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Sun Dec 17, 2017 3:35 am
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Post Re: Next Level Stuff
I once read in a piano technique book about "throwing the hand". Sometimes, to make the fingers work right, you have to "throw the hand" into position, and I've found, away from the instrument, imagining some difficult passage (specifically, Steel Drivers' "Reckless Side of Me") that I have to move my entire hand up and to the left a little to make my RH pinky work correctly in the passage.

I still don't have it up to tempo,esp. my band's tempo (they love going faster than the original!).

I hope that helps. Slow practice may give you similar ideas.

BTW I got a major inspiration from one of your videos, that helped me with RH articulation. I'm working on that now.

R


Sun Dec 17, 2017 8:31 am
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Post Re: Next Level Stuff
Cool replies, guys. Thanks for the input, I (for one) appreciate it all.

I was able to replace the lap dawg's threaded studs with slightly longer ones, so playing seated and hand access to the notes I wish to play (all of them) is no longer an issue. The Lap dawg is great, I highly recommend it!

And yes, I know that slow practice is a key part of getting faster, clean execution, rhythmic control, phrasing, accents, etc etc. I spend many hours a day with a metronome doing a lot of different things... polyrhythms, rests, tied notes, odd note groupings, etc, etc

I do practice standing sometimes, and when standing it's really not an issue (the hand access) but I have to be able to be seated for some of it. Gotta take notes, enter stuff in the computer, adjust tones, answer the phone things like that. Some seated practice HAS to happen (for me) it just does.

Remember, I am nobody. I just ask questions and try out the suggestions posted. If "it" works for me, I use it. If not, "it" gets discarded in favour of a more efficient, and practical method. I take my fun seriously...

For me, "next level" means a few different things, but mostly just "what I'm working on next" heh :D

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Sat Dec 23, 2017 9:52 am
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Post Re: Next Level Stuff
This was my solution to the problem. Fully adjustable.
http://www.stickist.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=12070
Sit or Stand... no longer a problem.
I prefer playing laying down though. 8-)

Jayesskerr wrote:
:D Hmmn, I'm thinking that I have perhaps just not phrased my question very articulately. Maybe this video will help clarify?

Thanks for the replies thus far, I take everything you guys seriously, and as such I'll try it all. Repeatedly if I have to. I will resolve this one way or the other, but I thought I'd ask the same as I always do.

The video of suck...



Sat Dec 30, 2017 7:39 pm
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Post Re: Next Level Stuff
WerkSpace wrote:
This was my solution to the problem. Fully adjustable.
http://www.stickist.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=12070
Sit or Stand... no longer a problem.
I prefer playing laying down though.


Very cool, Werkspace. That's pretty excellent!

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Wed Jan 03, 2018 6:43 pm
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