Vamoosh Teacher Training Day 21st April 2024

Click tracks are for experienced players, not beginners

Occasionally I get asked why there is no introductory ‘click track’ to indicate tempo on Vamoosh backing tracks.

For beginners, the experience of listening to music is just that, an experience. The mind and body involuntarily respond to the energy, melody and rhythm in the music. Contrast this with a click track. Much like a fire alarm, or a school bell, there are none of these qualities or emphasis, so to the unskilled musician, a click track offers little meaning.

The same could be said of dancers. Experienced dancers will understand how to use counting and beats to choreograph their routine, but imagine asking children to dance to a click track. No music, no beat, no inflection. I can only imagine the looks on their faces.

The skill of translating a click track into a feeling of tempo requires a level of musical understanding beginners have yet to acquire. A good backing track does not only provide a pulse, it provides a context, and the more elaborate and characterful the more useful it will be.

With more experience, playing more subtle and sophisticated music, the benign assistance of a metronome will become invaluable, but first you must learn how to use it.