my ukulele progress

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ripock

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I still see that the vituperative thread about Terry Carter thrives. I didn't read it after my initial early response because qui cum canibus concumbunt cum pulicibus surgent, as they say in Latin. When you sleep with dogs you arise with fleas and when you engage in angry threads, you become angry. And I do not want or need that in my life.

I want centered peace. I'm achieving that in my little corner.

speaking of little corners, I was just looking and musing at my kitchen and noticed a few ukulele-inspired acquisitions I have. on my counter I have a bowl that I keep roots in. It is made of acacia. And I have a flat serving dish for holding my cooking fats. It is made from a bole of a mango tree. I must have selected those items because of their connection to ukulele building. I wonder if I could attain something made of koa to complete the motif.

I have to attend to laundry now but I will update with my musical meanderings when I return

I started with a fairly simple Em, Am and a problematic B7. I always have a problem with the B7 on the 7th fret. My hand does like curling up to get that F#. I am comfortable with a B7#5 except that chord just sounds so final. It is a really great ending: arpeggiated B7#5 and one final Em. That is how things should end. So the ending's set but what about the middle?

I played around with different things off that A on the 9th fret: Am, A13, A+. I also subbed in some F# chords.

That was the basic structure I had to work with and I filled the interstices with C# Aiolian b5/F# Dorian b2 and D# super Lokrian/G Lydian #5.

Since those are all E melodic minor modes, they all wanted to return to an E, so I played around a bit and would return--not to E, but to Em either rooted on the G or A strings.

I have to go to bed. 6 hrs before I have to get up for work. These holiday weekends are always a crap shoot. Either people will be devoted to their holiday and I'll have an uneventful Sunday or people will think everyone else is having a holiday and therefore they will beleaguer me thinking the coast is clear.
 
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ripock

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I didn't know that roadrunners could fly. And I guess they don't fly as an osprey flies. But they can use their wings for propulsion. I saw a roadrunner jump onto a house by jumping and then using some wingstrokes to boost its altitude. That would be most useful.

For music I was playing much chimier voicings than usual with an E-A-B rooted in the 12th and 11th frets. Most of the melic work was done mid-neck--primarily playing the C# Aiolian b5 and F# Dorian b2. I know that isn't very forthcoming, but it is late and I don't have the gumption to write out the phrasing strategies that I was privileging. I will try again tomorrow.
 

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I think you'll enjoy the book--if it is what I think it is. When I learnt chords, I memorized 12 different shapes for major chords and 12 for the minor, and all that gave me was the chord as it existed in the lowest two or three frets.

With movable chords, you only learn three or four shapes and then move it all over the fretboard to get the chord you want. It allows for much more freedom and much less memorizing.
Ripock- I’m definitely ordering the Beloff Fretboard Road Map book. Why the rush? Today, I prematurely posted my Key of E cover of The Ballad Of Curtis Lowe to SOTU #551. I shouldn’t have done so because, less than one hour after posting the instrumental video, I was embarrassed to realize that my having rushed the process of perfecting the chord progression had led me to unknowingly fingerpick the intro, final chorus notes and outro riffs in a D riff rather than in A. I definitely need the book!
 
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If you do it once, it is a mistake. Do it twice and it is jazz. You're just using the chromatic D because that is the flavor you wanted as a jazzman:)
 

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If you do it once, it is a mistake. Do it twice and it is jazz. You're just using the chromatic D because that is the flavor you wanted as a jazzman:)
I like that ‘musical spin’, my kind friend. You have a special talent for adding fresh perspective. Hopefully, that compliment didn’t sound too much like a fortune cookie.
 
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ripock

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I just wanted to post something a bit more visual. This picture shows the C# Aiolian b5 on the G,C,andE strings. However if you look on the C, E, and A strings, it is the F# Dorian b2.

That's my starting point. To create a riff I use shapes. I know that there are 12 chromatic notes and a musician just has to pick the ones he wants to make a riff. However I don't find it as easy as that; I need something to direct me, and I use geometric shapes. For example in what I posted above the C#,D#, F#, G create a quadrilateral and so I use those notes and make my riff that becomes the basis for my song. Once I get a motif going then I move on to variations. For example, here's on variation. If I can make it to the A string, you'll notice the D# and E. The E Hungarian minor also ends on those same notes, so that it is possible to descend back to the E on the 4th fret using that scale before returning to my previous scale. That's just one example and not even a good example because once you get to that E everything resolves and you have to find some way to re-start. But you get the point.
 

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I just wanted to post something a bit more visual. This picture shows the C# Aiolian b5 on the G,C,andE strings. However if you look on the C, E, and A strings, it is the F# Dorian b2.

That's my starting point. To create a riff I use shapes. I know that there are 12 chromatic notes and a musician just has to pick the ones he wants to make a riff. However I don't find it as easy as that; I need something to direct me, and I use geometric shapes. For example in what I posted above the C#,D#, F#, G create a quadrilateral and so I use those notes and make my riff that becomes the basis for my song. Once I get a motif going then I move on to variations. For example, here's on variation. If I can make it to the A string, you'll notice the D# and E. The E Hungarian minor also ends on those same notes, so that it is possible to descend back to the E on the 4th fret using that scale before returning to my previous scale. That's just one example and not even a good example because once you get to that E everything resolves and you have to find some way to re-start. But you get the point.
The visual reference is a great help. I also appreciate your geometric shape analogy. The quadrilateral imagery or, at the very least, polygon, strikes me as a very good way to locate, work out and complete a riff.
 
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ripock

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I had a simple meal of three eggs and half a cup or so of some beans I made with chives and salt. I warmed the beans up with some red chili and then topped everything with green chili.

Then I took the first four chords of Rhythm Changes (I, V of II, II, and V) and stretched them out into a progression. The qualities I chose were Em6, C#7b9, F#m9, and B7. Since in a recent thread people felt I was disparaging cowboy chords I thought I would pay obeisance to the lower fret board by limiting my voicings to that area.

I tried for a while, but I get claustrophobic down there. You're trapped by the nut and can't really do much. You're stuck with two modes and you cannot really arpeggiate lest you move out of the area.

Eventually I developed ennui and started to move up the fret board with the F#m9 and B7. Then I was in the middle of the fret board where I could breath again with things to do both above and below my position. I didn't stay up in the rarefied region of the upper frets for long. I had made a pledge to the lower frets. So I arpeggiated back down to the A on the 2nd fret and the F#m9 again.

I could expatiate but it is 6 hours 'til I have to get up for work. Duty calls. On the bright side, tomorrow is pay day and my wife doesn't mind me going to the pub to read Latin poetry and have 2 or 3 whiskies. Especially since I've been so virtuous with my diet, losing 5 lbs a week and dropping my blood pressure by over 20 points.
 
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My night at the pub wasn't as productive as I had hoped. I had two whiskies but I became obsessed with one word (occupational hazard of being a philologist) and I spent more time musing than translating. It was decoro. You don't need to be able to read Latin to know that decoro is similar in meaning to its English cognate of decorate. The latin poem was talking about summer time, the time of fever in ancient Rome and the sentence said it was a time when unripe figs decorate the undertaker and with black-robed assistants. The meaning is easily understood. Summer brings death and business to the undertaker. However, I was stuck on decoro and seeking its ultimate significance. No biggie. That's why you study poetry; it is a life time of contemplation. I will pull out my unabridged dictionary and study the entry for decoro.

My wife just entered another phase. She's always trying something she hears about to see if it will help her torn up innards. I make all of our food, so that no matter how you measure it, we are eating righteously: low gluten, low acidity, low inflammatory foods. Her new kick is fish. I don't mind as long as she doesn't want me to make veloute sauce. So I gathered up the usual suspects: skinless/boneless sardines, tuna, salmon, trout.

For myself I wanted to re-create a Japanese breakfast I had. So I bought some miso soup to which I'll add some rice and eggs and pickled vegetables and some fish.

Right now I'm just twiddling my thumbs because I cannot play music until my wife gets up because for some reason my ukuleles pierce the walls regardless of how softly I play.

****

i looked up decoro and did not enjoy what I found. It has two meanings. To embellish (to decorate a tree with tinsel) and to honor (to decorate a soldier with a medal). The editors of my lexicon put my passage in the former category although they said the instance was facetious. According to them Horatius is ironically saying the heat and unripe figs embellish the undertaker. I think the second definition of decoro makes more sense insofar as the heat and figs bring honor to the undertaker (by giving him corpses with which to ply his trade). As I mentioned in my inchoate observation above, this is poetry and poets are a little more indirect. My problem is how does decorating indirectly mean to provide with business?
 
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Oldscruggsfan

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My night at the pub wasn't as productive as I had hoped. I had two whiskies but I became obsessed with one word (occupational hazard of being a philologist) and I spent more time musing than translating. It was decoro. You don't need to be able to read Latin to know that decoro is similar in meaning to its English cognate of decorate. The latin poem was talking about summer time, the time of fever in ancient Rome and the sentence said it was a time when unripe figs decorate the undertaker and with black-robed assistants. The meaning is easily understood. Summer brings death and business to the undertaker. However, I was stuck on decoro and seeking its ultimate significance. No biggie. That's why you study poetry; it is a life time of contemplation. I will pull out my unabridged dictionary and study the entry for decoro.
My wife just entered another phase. She's always trying something she hears about to see if it will help her torn up innards. I make all of our food, so that no matter how you measure it, we are eating righteously: low gluten, low acidity, low inflammatory foods. Her new kick is fish. I don't mind as long as she doesn't want me to make veloute sauce. So I gathered up the usual suspects: skinless/boneless sardines, tuna, salmon, trout.

For myself I wanted to re-create a Japanese breakfast I had. So I bought some miso soup to which I'll add some rice and eggs and pickled vegetables and some fish.

Right now I'm just twiddling my thumbs because I cannot play music until my wife gets up because for some reason my ukuleles pierce the walls regardless of how softly I play.

****

i looked up decoro and did not enjoy what I found. It has two meanings. To embellish (to decorate a tree with tinsel) and to honor (to decorate a soldier with a medal). The editors of my lexicon put my passage in the former category although they said the instance was facetious. According to them Horatius is ironically saying the heat and unripe figs embellish the undertaker. I think the second definition of decoro makes more sense insofar as the heat and figs bring honor to the undertaker (by giving him corpses with which to ply his trade). As I mentioned in my inchoate observation above, this is poetry and poets are a little more indirect. My problem is how does decorating indirectly mean to provide with business?
Ripock- My home's walls have a similar tendency to amplify the relatively low volume of a uke at certain times of the day. As to Horatius, in my former career as a money salesman (commercial lending officer), I considered a visit from an unprofitable borrower as "darkening my doorway". Conversely, profitable borrowers, particularly those whose projects enabled me to invest large buckets of depositors' money, were seen as a conduit for embellishing my performance bonus (thus helping feather / decorate my nest) and their repeated visits tickled my ego, e.g. honored my integrity and salesmanship. In that context, Horatius was simultaneously honoring the mortician with new, fig-poisoned corpses and embellishing his coffins with new contents. Though I admit doubting my accuracy, these are the kinds of stretches of logic that I found I somewhat enjoyed when writing otherwise mind-numbing essays during my university days.
 
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ripock

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I received my copy of Ukulele Fretboard Roadmaps and it is great, but it is years too late. I've already figured it all out. I hope that doesn't sound arrogant. I just mean that without reading the book I saw that movable shapes was the key and I hunted and pecked and little-by-little developed systems. My way has been haphazard and the book spells it all out step by step. I could have used this five years ago! But again I don't know if I would have derived so much pleasure with having the keys to the kingdom. The struggle has been fun. I have only read part of the book but so far the only thing I do differently is that I play some chords with only 3 strings to simplify the fretting. Especially with triads since, by definition, there are only 3 notes, there's always a redundant note and that note usually required a stretch. At first I attempted the stretch but then I noticed that if I just eliminate the extra note things were much easier.
 
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addendum on Horatius: I finally figured out what was bugging me about the passage in question. It is the preposition phrase, which I wasn't even thinking about. I translated that the unripe figs and the heat honor the undertaker with his dark-robed assistants. But there is more than one 'with.' With can denote accompaniment: the undertaker accompanied by his attendants. However with can also express the means by which: the undertaker by means of the attendants. Now it makes sense to me. the unripe figs honor the undertaker by means of his attendants. The figs, and the death they bring, gives the undertaker his retinue of helpers which augments his importance.
 
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I finished the Ukulele Fretboard Roadmaps and I was kind of creeped out. If you browse this thread, it is obvious that I've been learning about the circle of fifths, Rhythm Changes, and chord roots. The book goes into all of that. For some reason I was on the same wavelength as the authors in formulating my own curriculum. Or maybe that's just the right way of going about things and I intuited it. I don't know.

The one thing the book has that is outside of my experience is a few big-picture concepts. I didn't look into them too deeply because I have drawn my own conclusions and have my own way of approaching the fretboard and pentatonic scales. The concepts in the book really screwed with my head by offering a different way to think about the same material. So I did read them to understand what they were saying but it was only a cursory reading to glean what I could about the new ways of organizing without it actually supplanting my way.
 
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I worked with the same rhythm changes outline I was playing a few days ago, but I changed a few of the chord qualities and made the voices descend.

I started with a E13 rooted on the 7th fret, moved down to C#ø rooted on the 6th fret, F#m7 rooted on the 6th, and B7 rooted on the 4th fret. On that B7, the highest voice was the D#. That's the note that really hits your ear, so I took advantage of that and used that D# to transition into picking. I primarily riffed around in the D# Super Lokrian and the subdominant shape of E minor pentatonic. I would resolve on the E and transition back to the E13.

It doesn't sound like much when it is written out but lasted a good hour when you play in time and either explore different options and revert back to the basic.
 

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I finished the Ukulele Fretboard Roadmaps and I was kind of creeped out. If you browse this thread, it is obvious that I've been learning about the circle of fifths, Rhythm Changes, and chord roots. The book goes into all of that. For some reason I was on the same wavelength as the authors in formulating my own curriculum. Or maybe that's just the right way of going about things and I intuited it. I don't know.

The one thing the book has that is outside of my experience is a few big-picture concepts. I didn't look into them too deeply because I have drawn my own conclusions and have my own way of approaching the fretboard and pentatonic scales. The concepts in the book really screwed with my head by offering a different way to think about the same material. So I did read them to understand what they were saying but it was only a cursory reading to glean what I could about the new ways of organizing without it actually supplanting my way.
I just ordered the book. If it doesn’t make lightbulbs go on in my mind, I’m holding you responsible!
 
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I'm busy with cooking right now. For my wife trout baked with a glaze of brown sugar, coconut oil, and chives. And julienne cut potatoes and some turnip greens. Later on for myself I will have my usual beans and eggs.

However after that I thought I would explore a concept I heard about: using several voicings of the same chord in a progression. After all, they do sound a bit different so why not regard them as different chords or at least as different nodes on the progression.
 
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my rationale: early on in our ukulele careers we learn that strumming the uke with all open strings is either C6 or Am7. Even though they are the same four voices, the chord sounds different depending on how you use it. I found the same thing with m6, ø, and 9 chords. They use the same chord shape. However when I use the shape as a m6, it is my favorite chord but when I use it as a 9 chord, I find it shrill and unsatisfactory.

I wanted to see if something similar happens when you use different voicings of the same chord.

What I don't want to do is just swap one voicing for another because I do that all the time. What I wanted to see if I could use different voicings of the same chord in different positions in a progression to see if they could behave like different chords.

I decided I needed a somewhat lengthy progression so that I could separate the different voicings (or put them side by side). I chose the minor 7-3-6-2-5-1 because it is my favorite since it is harmonized from my favorite scale the Harmonic Minor. I chose the Em as the chord I would vary because I can play that chord at frets 4, 7, 9, 12, and 16. The Em is a bit less spicy than I usually prefer but it is easy and I'll be needing some ease in what I'm doing.

I didn't get too far in laying down the groundwork for this little experiment because I started too late in the evening and I have to go to bed. I'll continue tomorrow and see what I can find out.
 
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Someone revitalized an old thread about customs. Horses for courses because people were gushing about a spruce top that I would not even accept gratis because I primarily buy for looks and spruce is just so boring.

I tried to keep for boring myself by making a new progression that started out a bit dissonantly but ended much more sweetly.

D#ø, G7 sus4, A+, Em @7th, Em @ 4th, F#ø, B7, Em @ 12th, Em @16th (with a small stutter to a D#m before sliding back to Em)

I mixed it up enough so that the three different voicings of Em didn't sound weird nor did they shut down the progression with resolution. At first it sounded like something was missing before I get to that final Em. But then I just repeated F#ø, B7, Em again and that seemed to be what I was after.