Ear Training is an important skill to add to your arsenal. Let’s start by listening to and playing back some simple melody lines. As you get better, you’ll be able to pick out melody lines from more complex arrangements.

Start with a freshly tuned guitar. For a variety of reasons outlined on the [tuning standards page], you may have to tune your guitar to the actual recording.

For each exercise below,

1. listen to the mp3, then
2. try to play it, and / or play along with it.

When you have it figured out,

3. write out the notes on some staff paper.
4. Play back what you’ve written
5. Check your answers

blank staff paper.pdf

Tip: There are programs and practice aids that will slow down songs while preserving the pitch to help you figure out difficult passages, but you don’t need any tools. Just listen to the section over and over until you can sing it over and over. Then, you can simply sing it at any speed you want and you don’t have to keep pressing buttons.

Listen:

( download link: Ear Training Melody Tuning.mp3 )

Answer: Ear Training Melody Tuning.png

Listen:

( download link: Ear Training Melody Phrase 01.mp3 )
Answer: Ear Training Melody Phrase 01.png

Listen:

( download link: Ear Training Melody Phrase 02.mp3 )
Answer: Ear Training Melody Phrase 02.png

Listen:

( download link: Ear Training Melody Phrase 03.mp3 )
Answer: Ear Training Melody Phrase 03.png

Listen:

( download link: Ear Training Melody Phrase 04.mp3 )
Answer: Ear Training Melody Phrase 04.png

Listen:

( download link: Ear Training Melody Phrase 05.mp3 )
Answer: Ear Training Melody Phrase 05.png

Listen:

( download link: Ear Training Melody Phrase 06.mp3 )
Answer: Ear Training Melody Phrase 06.png

Listen:

( download link: Ear Training Melody Phrase 07.mp3 )
Answer: Ear Training Melody Phrase 07.png

For more practice, start transcribing the melody lines from songs you hear on the radio. You want to get to where you can easily play and write down the ideas that come into your head.

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