Noodlin’!

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  • #61845
    The_Bumble_Bard
    Participant

    Hello friends! ☺️

    So, the term “noodling” in relation to music is something I had only heard about in passing, but didn’t fully know what it meant at all – until about a week ago (I know what day it is, lol), when I got to have a private lesson with Matt Dahlberg and we got to talk about noodling a bit. ☺️

    (Also, I don’t know how many people here are also on Matt’s Patreon, but this, “noodling,” is a potential topic for his June lesson.) 😂

    If you don’t know, “noodling” is “freestyle, in the moment playing – where you explore seemingly random notes and rely more on trial and error and intuition than rigid musical systems and rules” (got that from the Googles). 😉

    So, after getting to talk about this with Matt, I realized, this is mostly how I love to play music, noodling, and pretty much always has been – even before I started playing uke and only played piano. I love being able to play whatever notes come to mind, or play songs I know – one song, in a variety of ways. That said, for me, an important part of getting better at more improvisational playing has been learning songs from Rock Class 101 and from Matt’s YouTubes, because then I gain more “material” and experience to “fuel” my more free-form playing. 🙂

    Here is an example of noodling I sent to Matt. It’s his beautiful arr. of the theme from “Jurassic Park” from here on Rock Class 101, but with my noodle-y variation of playing it with the three finger roll:

    (Also, in keeping with my spastic nature, it may not be 100% accurate to the arr. and it’s just a small portion. 😂) That was for an exercise we were doing for the lesson. When I “noodle” and play freely, it is usually more random. I will try to get a video of that soon, that kind of shows more how I play in a noodling-y way.

    All this to say, I was really curious to know if there are others here on Rock Class 101 who like to play this way? Who enjoy “noodling” on the ukulele? Do you enjoy a more free form style of playing? Or do you like to create variations of songs – use songs that you know and mix them up (because that is also a form of noodling)? What are your favorite RC101 songs to noodle over/with? Or, do you tend to, or prefer to, keep to the written music as much as possible? I really would love to know! In the May challenge, there definitely were a bunch of people who added on their own spin onto the arrangements, so I don’t think I’m at all alone in loving to play in a freer, more creative way. ☺️

    If you do love noodling and feel comfortable, I would love to hear your own examples of noodling and what kind of things you do when you noodle. 😀 That would be very interesting to see. ☺️

    Thank you so much for reading and any contributions you share! 😀

    #61847
    lhamilton
    Participant

    I’ve done a bit of noodling on the uke. However it’s far easier for me to do on my celtic harp since it’s diatonic so all the notes I’d noodle with are all that are available in a particular key till I flip a lever to change things.

    Linda

    #61848
    The_Bumble_Bard
    Participant

    @lhamilton, that sounds so cool, a Celtic harp! I would love to hear that, to hear your harp-flavored noodling. 😁 If you ever wanted to share that here, that would be amazing! Thank you for the reply! 😊

    I feel like the ukulele is, in some ways, one of the easier instruments to start noodling on, just because the first chords you learn on uke are pretty easy, like the C Major chord, F maj, G maj, and A minor chords and even just with those you can play some very pretty things without even thinking, just randomly fingerpicking while holding those chords. That’s what I did literally when I first started playing uke and I still love to play that way. For me it’s very therapeutic and relaxing to do that, to just relax and play through chords that way.

    Even though I still only know a couple of notes on uke by name, I just try different chord shapes and create little melodies around those chords. It doesn’t always sound perfect but sometimes amazing things come from just trying different chord shapes that way. That’s one way I like to noodle. And again, learning really well written songs, like RC101’s, and reinventing them or simply just fingerpicking them differently or using a different technique to play the same-ish notes in the song. 😊

    I’ll share another example of noodling soon, just gotta try to record a video! I hope more people decide to share their noodling examples. 😊

    #61875
    gi_gi_
    Participant

    @the_bumble_bard I love your doodling. It’s something I am working on at present. I did my first soloing to a backing track last week. I recorded it and it’s funny but not as scary as I expected. I need lots more practice. I have to figure out how to get the audio over here.

    My goal is also to be more of a free player. I dont want to only memorize songs that I forget 🤣😂🤣😂

    I think I figured how to attach here. Don’t laugh 🫣☺️. No you can laugh:

    #61877
    The_Bumble_Bard
    Participant

    @gi_gi_ thank you so much! 😁💕 I’m going to try to get a recording pretty soon of how I normally “noodle” on uke because that’s only one way I go about it (and again that was more for an exercise Matt was helping me with, for a lesson). From what he was telling me, and from what I know from my own experience, the beauty of noodling is there really is no wrong way to approach it (to a degree 😂) and everyone has a different way of viewing it and going about it, and has things they naturally like to do when they noodle based on their individual experiences.

    Hahaha!!! Same, Double G, same. 😅😂 In my experience, when you create something on your own, from out of your own head, you remember it more and can play it more easily because it stems from what you unconsciously, naturally do when playing an instrument. That’s just my opinion about it. I have a lot of thoughts about this obviously because I didn’t realize there was a name for this approach to playing an instrument until Matt brought it up. 😂 And this is always how I’ve (mostly) played instruments: By ear, through intuition, and “random wandering.” So I’ve been pondering this a lot.

    That said, learning songs is how you can create an “infrastructure” for noodling and continue to give you new ideas and techniques. For me it’s really good to learn the songs here because otherwise my noodling could easily stagnate. 😅

    I love that sooo much, that is so flippin’ lovely! Really amazing. Thank you for sharing that! How did you do that? Is that sort of an approach of following a musical scale and soloing that way? I love you chuckling at the end. 😂 You definitely should keep going with that! 😊💕

    #61880
    gi_gi_
    Participant

    @The_Bumble_Bard I totally agree with you. Thanks for the encouragement. I will continue. I just joined Marco Cirillo’s thingie and it is something new everyday Mon-Fri and it encourages creativity. By day 5 of the first week I was soloing. The chord progression was the first thing learned on Monday. We were to solo using the G major scale from the 7th fret to the 10th fret. That’s all. We had like 8 notes to choose from and to do whatever our hearts contented. Add pull offs, pull ons, slides, 1/4 notes, 1/8 notes, etc. it was fun. A little scary but helped me see it’s doable.

    #61898
    emiliano
    Participant

    I absolutely love it! 🌟 It’s a great way for me to relax and chill. Recently, the YouTube algorithm blessed me with a Mika Kane video. I’ve been learning the 4/4 waltz and the one from Howl’s Moving Castle. 🎶

    I found this lesson by Mika Kane, and I think it’s great for further noodling on the ukulele. It would be amazing to have a lesson like that but not using the C major scale. 🤔 I have no idea how to apply it outside of that in other scales! Any tips are welcome. 🙌

    Hope to see your noodlings here more often! 🎸 On the other hand, I decided I will start tabbing my noodles because I want to learn how to write down my ideas so I don’t forget them. For example, I
    adapted a song from a game I love, Guild Wars 2, like 3 years ago, but now I forget everything hahaha. 🎮😂

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by emiliano.
    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by emiliano.
    #61912
    gi_gi_
    Participant

    @emiliano Ooooohhhh this video is golden. Thanks so much for posting it here. What a great idea to tab out some things or at least take a video of yourself so you can figure out what you did before 🙂

    #61913
    The_Bumble_Bard
    Participant

    @gi_gi_ agreed that video looks really great, I’m going to watch it later today! 😁 Thank you, @emiliano! 😊

    I wrote out a pretty long post in reply last night but the forum ate it because it had more than one link – with three more noodlings, that’s probably why the forum ate it. It got confused, thought they were ramen noodles. 😉😂

    #61914
    gi_gi_
    Participant

    @the_bumble_bard Oh my goodness the Drewmpa Loompas have them 🤣😂🤣😂 Please post one at least. I have to admit that at the end of that Mika video I shed a tear because I finally get it. Oh my goodness that video is the best ever. I’m so happy to finally get it. It’s not so much of a secret as I thought. I will practice, practice.


    @emiliano
    Thanks so much for that video. I missed that golden video of Mika’s somehow. Thanks so much for sharing it. You were asking how to solo with other scales besides the c scale. I’m assuming that can be done by hitting the notes on the A string that corresponds to the scale you want to play. For instance, the G scale have these notes: G,A,B,C,D,E and F# which are frets 0,2,3,5,7,9 (you can continue higher as you please). Just google what are the notes in the scale you want to work on and find them on the A string. Of course, these would have to coincide with the chords you’re playing 🙂 Does that make any sense? @The_Bumble_Bard please correct me if I’m off here.

    #61922
    The_Bumble_Bard
    Participant

    @gi_gi_, hahaha oh my they do!! You’re right! I think the thing is that the Drewmpa Loompas’ main diet is noodles which is why they snatched that post up so quick!! 😂😅😂 Good one! We’re so ridiculous. 😅😂💕😉 I’m so, so happy that the video helped you!! That video is amazing, I finally got to watch it. Some of the things he talked about I was doing already, like playing the melody out of a chord or around a chord, but the thing I thought was especially amazing was the part about the chord inversions of different chords. That was so helpful, I’m definitely going to try that!! What a great video, thank you @emiliano so much for sharing that!! 😁

    And yes, Gi Gi, that explanation sounds exactly right! The only other thing I think you’d have to change is the chords you’re playing the inversions of, too. So, for the key of G major, some chords that go with that are D and C. I think you can use the circle of fifths to find what chords can go with what key. I’m sorry I’m really bad with that part of things but basically you have to pick chords that “go with” whatever key you choose. 😂😅

    Thank you again so much for these great replies!!! I think Andrew will rescue my ridiculous mega post from the Drewmpa Loompas soon but I don’t want to bug him for it. I’ll only post one video here at a time from now on. I just got excited… 😂

    #61925
    emiliano
    Participant

    Oh it is my pleasure @gi_gi_ ya regarding in other scales ya but then I need to think a lot and is not noodling anymore haha with cmajor is so easy cause you only worry about the A and the E string, but ya I think there is no easy way you have to create the muscle memory.

    Will start with G major since only have one sharp an see how it goes!!! Thank you for the suggestion.


    @the_bumble_bard
    oh so this noodlings links I suppose are in your youtube channel? I will check them tomorrow, I am going really early tomorrow to Cancún to create social media content for some hotels haha also free breakfast in onw hotel and free meal in another, cannot complain about free food 😂

    #61926
    The_Bumble_Bard
    Participant

    @emiliano, haha, no, actually I posted the three links here in a post, but because the post had three links the forum automatically marked it as spam and removes the post until Andrew fixes it by restoring it. I know he’s tried to correct that issue but I don’t think there’s anything that can be done about it. 😂😅 But that’s happened multiple times with my posts, so now I just usually wait for him to restore it but maybe I’ll ask him. The videos on my YouTube are mostly “finished” songs, not so much noodling. 😊

    Anyway here’s one of the noodling videos I tried to post:

    This was one of my own arrangements that I’ve been working on and one I noodle with a lot lately, “Blue (Da Ba Dee)” by Eifel 65, but in a more renaissance-y style. 😅 I had a lesson with Matt and he helped me start to write it down as tabs, very tricky. 😊 But it’s also one I like to mindlessly noodle over.

    Ha oh well that’s pretty crazy! I’ve never been to Cancun. The only tropical place I’ve been is actually New Zealand many years ago now with my sister. That was a crazy trip, I was only 19 when we went! That’s hard to believe how long ago that was now. Anyway that sounds pretty dang sweet, hope you enjoy that free food! Especially free breakfast. 😅

    #61927
    gi_gi_
    Participant

    @emiliano Cool. Do you have a you tube channel where you post your content? I used to live in Mexico. Loved it.
    About the noodling with different scales, it’s not as diff as you may think. You still stay on the A string but of course it would have to match the chords you’re playing like chords that compliment the G chord. You’re doing great.


    @the_bumble_bard
    New Zealand is so gorgeous. We were there right before the pandemic started. Can’t wait to hear your noodling. I’ll post more as well. I’m so glad you made this post

    #61928
    gi_gi_
    Participant

    @the_bumble_bard Wow your song is so pretty. I love your noodling. Sooooo good. When you barred the 3rd fret and had the pinky on the 6th fret I think that’s a D# or Eb chord I think. When you have the basic C chord and move it up the fretboard with the barred finger the base note is on the A string. I don’t really know what I’m talking about. Just posing 🙂

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by gi_gi_.
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