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How and Why To Use Metronome

The question is NOT whether to use a metronome - it's HOW to use a metronome.

Published: 07 Jan 2016 Updated: 18 Mar 2022Visits: 29Code: ML13

Topic: Metronome ANY banjo bass drums guitar harmonica kazoo lapsteel mandolin music piano ukulele Subjects: Rhythm Reading Practice Metronome

How and Why To Use Metronome

A metronome is a device that produces an audible click or other sound at a regular interval that can be set by the user, typically in beats per minute (bpm).

Using a metronome involves the following steps:

  • Buy one, or find the one you already have and never use.
  • Turn it on and use it.

First, The Why?

It is as simple as playing accurately and in time with yourself, and especially with others. The with others is the situation where you can tell the difference in musicians, a.k.a., players that have spent time developing their internal timekeeper and those that have not.

The playing in time can be ready apparent when listing to a recording our your playing. You WILL hear when you were early or late and not playing n time.

Well, it really is that simple. However, here are a few more tips to get the most our of using a metronome.

First - All, a metronome is simply an external timekeeper to help you develop your own external timekeeper. Avoid the metronome at your peril. Ralph Shaw - King of Ukulele calls this syndrome — Metronome Avoidance Disorder (MAD).

But, I Don't Have Rhythm!

You will hear this retort at times. EVERYONE has rhythm (at least 99.99% do). Not, I made up that percent, but I've never ran across anyone who didn't pass this next test.

For anyone that says I Don't Have Rhythm. Have them count backwards from 10 to 1. They will do it in time, an even count. They have rhythm. Likewise, they just never worked on developing it accurately using their instrument of choice. In our case, the ukulele.

Tips for Using Your Metronome

  • Start SLOW and increase the tempo a few clicks, no more than 3 or 4 bpm at a time.
  • Don't stop unless it's a real train wreck. For minor problems, keep going - you're going to do the section, piece again.
  • Break the music down to a measure, line or section at a time before proceeding to the next measure.
  • For difficult melodies, separate the rhythm from the notes and let the phrase monotone, as if it were one note.
  • Start the metronome and leave it on for your full practice session .

Your playing WILL NOT become Mechanical — just better and more accurate.

EVERYTHING you do musically and technically should be accurate and on purpose. That is why we put the time in - to get better at what we already can do.

If reading music, it can be broken down to note recognition and rhythm. These can be separated to identify any problem areas in each.

ALL musician, yes ALL musicians are responsible for keeping time in a band situation. It's not the role of one musician vs. another.

Metronomes

Get yourself a metronome, an external source for helping your develop a internal sense of time and rhythm.

Web Sites & Apps

Here are few places to find a metronome online. Every app store has multiple metronomes avalable for download to your computer, tables and or phone.

  • flutetunes.com Metronome • AThis online metronome allows you to set the tempo using the common tempo terms suck as: Presto, Allegro, Andante, Largo, etc.
  • Musica Metronome • A very simple metronome right in a browser. Musicca is a most popular music learning platforms, with several million monthly users in more than 150 countries. Based in Denmark, but our team comprises people from around the world.
  • Google Metronome • A very simple metronome right in a browser.
  • Metronome • A GNOME (Linux ) Flatpak app .

Your fellow ukulele players and musician will NOT know you are using a metronome ONLY if you should be using a metronome.

End of Lesson - Thanks, Hope You Enjoyed It!

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