The concept of the Abstract Timetable allows for the exploration of rhythmic phrases that vary from the common flow of subdivisions of the Standard or World Timetables, but are effectively applicable to the timetable format. Abstraction in art is a common practice and applies easily to the concept of the timetable with excellent results. Applications of Abstract Timetables are employed throughout the book and typically noted as such.

Chapter 4 - Abstract Timetable Studies

Practice Tips & Applications

The Syncopated Standard Timetable & Other Abstract Studies

The purpose of the Syncopated Standard Timetable is to shift emphasis from strong beats (like downbeats) to normally weak ones (like upbeats). Displacing the note value groupings of the Standard Timetable to their respective upbeats abstracts them into a syncopated rhythm.

The Syncopated Standard Timetables (in Duration and Attack Notation) illustrate this. The Duration Notation timetable keeps the full note values of the Standard Timetable subdivisions intact once syncopated. The Attack Notation timetable focuses only on the rhythmic attack of the syncopated subdivisions––not their full duration––as also used in the Contemporary Backbeat & Modern Jazz Groove Studies chapters of the book.

Other Abstract Timetables explored in this chapter include Dotted Motive Phrasing (a three beat pulse per subdivision), Selected Rudimental Variation applications and a Web Exclusive PDF and video study exploring how to elasticize subdivisions to develop that greasy, “in-the-cracks” feel.

Video Demonstration 1, Improve Your Groove, Part 2, explores the musical timekeeping concepts of the chapter’s Syncopated Standard Timetable and Elastic Subdivisions, as described above.

Play Video

DOWNLOAD the PDF to see the Syncopated Standard Timetable and the Dotted Subdivisions (in both 3/4 and 4/4 time) Abstract Timetables and LISTEN to the MP3s to hear the Syncopated Standard Timetable at a tempo of quarter-note = 60 bpm, and the Dotted Subdivision (in 3/4 and 4/4 time) Timetables at a tempo of eighth-note = 120 bpm, all with click track accompaniment.

DOWNLOAD the Web Exclusive Variations on the Syncopated Standard Timetable PDF which explores Rudimental Sticking Variations applied to the Syncopated Standard Timetable.

DOWNLOAD the Web Exclusive Elastic Subdivisions Abstract Timetable PDF, illustrating the gradual transformation of Standard Timetable subdivisions to related ones inside the quarter-note pulse. The skill of being able to phrase in a grey-area between quantized rhythms helps produce a deeper feel applicable to grooves and soloing in a wide variety of musical styles.