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How do you learn how to play music by ear? Answered

for a while now i have been wanting to learn how to play music by ear. How do i do this?


i think is advisable to learn music from the scratch. or learn with the professional musicians.

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its good to learn it, but what i hate about it is when i mess up i have to restart from the beginning, maybe its different from most people btw i play piano :)

Regardless of your currently level of ability, you can at least improve your ability to play by ear through practice. Basically, you need to practice playing by ear in order to develop the ability. For some it will take many years to be able to play simple songs by ear, for others it will only take months to achieve noticeable improvements.

I suggest you try some ear training tools. Here are a couple of free ear training tools that are specifically designed to help you improve your ability to play by ear: http://www.iwasdoingallright.com/tools/ear_training/

I'd start with the interval/chord/melody trainer shown on the left side of the page.

well i have to say it can be one of those things where u have it or you dont... no matter what it will take time to learn how to play by ear and you have to know your insturment (what each note sounds like ect)...ive known someone thats been playing guitar for 13 years and cant play by ear at all when ive been playing for 4 and i can almost figure out entire metallica songs... one thing to remember though is nothing is impossible. even if you dont "have it" that doesnt mean you cant do it, it will just be harder

From what I've noodled out, you have to be able to hear the music in your head, then play what you hear-going over it many times until you have the whole song. Knowing music theory might help in guessing what comes next (or just putting words to what you understand), but being able to hear what's wrong and what's right (and remembering it for next time : )) is what works for me.


10 years ago

Well, music is not music notation (although codifying it enabled many musical innovations.) Most people can use an instrument (their voice) to produce music they've only heard...'course it's not aways pleasing to others ;)

First you need some basic knowledge about music, i.e., how chords are built, chord progressions, scales, etc. I can't think of anyone who plays by ear who didn't their homework first.

Think of it as building a musical vocabulary. How much knowledge you need depends on the type of music you plan on playing, to a large extent.

Unless you're related to Frank Marino, who claimed in the 70's to have taken LSD, and woke the next day able to play all of Hendrix's licks flawlessly...