Rhythm is the life force of Music. It drives the music and keeps it moving along. In reality you can’t have good music if your rhythm is off, especially in a band, group, or orchestral setting. But what is rhythm exactly?
According to Wikipedia, Rhythm is defined as “the timing of events on a human scake; of musical sounds and silences.” This means that rhythm encompasses what you do play as well as what you do not play. It is just as important as what you do play. I’ve even had one drummer tell me that the spaces of silence is more important than the spaces of musical notation. This really needs to be expanded on. Managing silence – what a concept!
This concept of managing silence as it relates to rhythm is something that a lot of musicians would do well to heed. In a lot of instances just knowing that “you can do something, doesn’t mean you have to do it. For a lot of musical situations, the old saying of,” Less Is More,” is true. The older I get, the more this concept resonates with me and I hope it resonates with you as well as you continue to Play It By Ear!