A pace keeper – is he really needed?

A pace keeper – is he really needed?

See Metronomes and tuners in Muzyczny.pl

This term can certainly be used to describe a metronome that should be found in the home of every person learning to play a musical instrument. Regardless of whether you are learning to play the piano, guitar or trumpet, the metronome is really worth using. And this is not some invention and the opinion of a handful of teachers from the school, but every musician who takes music education seriously, regardless of the type of music performed, will confirm it to you. Unfortunately, many people are not fully aware of it, and thus they often hurt themselves by avoiding working with the metronome. This, of course, comes from their belief that they play evenly and keep the pace well from start to finish. Often it is only an illusory subjective feeling that can be easily verified. It is enough to order such a person to play something with a metronome and this is where huge problems begin. The metronome cannot be deceived and the songs and exercises that someone could play without a metronome do not work anymore.

The general division that can be used in these devices are: traditional metronomes, which are wound like mechanical watches and electronic metronomes, which include digital metronomes as well as those in the form of telephone applications. Which one to choose or which is better, I leave it for your assessment. Every musician or learner has slightly different needs and expectations of this device. One will need an electronic metronome because he will want to be able to, for example, plug in headphones to hear the beats better, where this is especially useful in the case of loud instruments such as drums or trumpets. Another instrumentalist will not have such a requirement and, for example, a large number of pianists prefer to work with a mechanical metronome. There is also a large number of musicians who, for example, do not like electronic metronome and for them only traditional metronomes are relevant. It can also be treated as a certain ritual preceding our exercise. First you have to wind up our device, set the beating, put the pendulum in motion and we are just starting to practice. However, in this article I want to confirm your belief that no matter what metronome you choose, it is a great device that will not only help you develop such a habit of keeping the pace, but also significantly improve your playing technique. For example, by playing a given exercise with equal crotchets, then doubling them to eighth notes, then to sixteenth notes, etc. while keeping the metronome beating evenly, all this improves the playing technique.

A pace keeper - is he really needed?
Mechanical metronome Wittner, source: Muzyczny.pl

Another such elementary requirement for keeping a steady pace is team playing. If you do not have this skill, then even if you were able to extract the most beautiful sounds or rhythms, as in the case of a drummer, from an instrument, no one will want to play with you if you are unstoppable. There is probably nothing worse than an accelerating drummer in the band, but the drummer who plays the most evenly will be able to be knocked out of equal performance as a bassist or other instrumentalist will push forward. This skill is really desirable no matter what the instrument is played on.

Using the metronome is especially important at the beginning of music education. Later, of course, too, but this is mainly for the purpose of some verification and self-testing, although there are musicians who read each of their new exercises with the accompaniment of a metronome. A metronome is a device that can do wonders in this respect, and people who have quite big problems with keeping an even pace, can remedy this imperfection to a very large extent by systematically practicing and working with the metronome.

A pace keeper - is he really needed?
Electronic metronome Fzone, source: Muzyczny.pl

It can be said that you can really gain a lot at relatively low cost. The prices of mechanical metronome start from about one hundred zlotys, while the electronic ones can be purchased for 20-30 zlotys. Of course, you can try more expensive models, the price of which depends primarily on the brand, quality of materials and the possibilities offered by the device. The first two factors are decisive when purchasing a mechanical metronome, the third relates to electronic metronome. Regardless of how much we spend, remember that it is usually a one-time purchase or once every few years, and this is because these devices do not break down very often. All of this speaks in favor of having a metronome, provided we use it of course.

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