[LAU] Developing perfect pitch

Marco Asa aesir.ml at gmail.com
Fri Apr 16 18:21:20 UTC 2010

Il giorno Fri, 16 Apr 2010 14:33:13 +0200
Atte André Jensen <atte.jensen at gmail.com> ha scritto:

> Hi
> I have quite good relative pitch, but not perfect pitch. By accident
> I stumbled upon some information that gave me the idea "why not give
> it a shot, it might be possible to pick it up". Please let's not go
> (too deep) into either "it can't be learned" or "it makes you
> unmusical".
> However, I don't really know what the steps int the learning process 
> would be.
> One course seems to start with CDEF and then add more notes when
> those are stuck in your head. However with these notes played at
> random I'd be able to tell any of the other if I'm told what the
> first note is :-( To I guess that wouldn't work...
> Another seems to play all 12 notes at random and then you should only 
> focus on one at the time, for instance be able to identify whenever C 
> comes up.
> Are there anyone here that *learned* perfect pitch (don't care 'bout
> the lucky bastards that was born with it). How did you learn it?
Challenged by a friend born with perfect pitch, I learnt how white
keys "sound like", I associated every note with a musical piece I know
well, for example, C is the first note of Mendehlson wedding march, if
someone play a single isolated C i can say: "Hmm, that sound like the
first note of wedding march, so it must be a C" This is pretty unuseful
and slow process, the error rate is high (I find notes in fifth
similar in couples, expecially C-G and D-A), but I got it in short time
(one or two weeks) if you really want it you may go much furter by
practising a lot.

> Now to the linux part: It would be dead simple to write a script that 
> throws notes at you, even with different constraints (which
> instrument, which group of notes). Besides one would need *really*
> well tuned notes of instruments like piano, guitar + more.
> Would anyone here be interested in exchanging scripts, samples and 
> practice results for such a journey; "collecting a set of files for 
> learning perfect pitch with your linux box, and using them to learn 
> yourself perfect pitch along the way"?

GNU solfege have an exercise that ask to identify tones, you may
configure it to play only a small selection of notes up to the whole 12
tone scale. And it keeps track of statistics.

More information about the Linux-audio-user mailing list