Mudcat Café message #438108 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #33044   Message #438108
Posted By: Rick Fielding
11-Apr-01 - 11:35 AM
Thread Name: I'll never learn mandolin because....
Subject: RE: I'll Never Learn Mandolin Because.....
Bruce. I HEAR YAH! YOU ARE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT!

...but before you give up in disgust....

Several of my students are mandolinists. They run the gamut from rank beginners to working professionals and they ALL the problem you mentioned. I have a solution. IT WORKS. TRUST ME!

Get a Yamaha Keyboard, with "record" function. They are about 300 bucks (give or take a hundred). I don't mean the "serious piano" keyboards, I mean one of those "bells and whistles" kind, marketed for the amateur who wants to play simple stuff with a full orchestra in the background.

Mine has a "loop" function which repeats any chord pattern I play, over and over again. Even if you can't play a note of piano, you can learn "one finger" stuff.

Just pick a beat and tempo, push "record" and play something (just the one finger chord) in C, F, and G. (you can transpose it later if you want.)

Playing along with the loop is a great way of hearing the mandolin with a full band context.

I use this a LOT with my students, and personally I've used it to practice scales, runs etc. in weird keys. (I only play limited piano, so I transpose quite a lot)

Believe me it's the best investment I've made in years.

Rick