Do random songs ever pop in to your head when improvising?

mystichands

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I have a built in Rolodex in my head. Yesterday Baker Street kept popping up in my head, next thing I knew I had a guitar in my hands and was figuring it out. This happens fairly often.
 

Stratocast

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I love playing my guitar, improvising over a wide array of tunes, and being in the zone or flow state. It's what I strive for all the time (either on or off a gig) when I am not practicing a specific concept.

Yesterday, while doing my best Bill Frisell with Telecaster impersonation I could, playing through a few tunes, I found myself playing with the beginning melody of "California Dreamin" by the Mamas and Papas. I was never a fan of this band, or this tune - although George Benson did a pretty awesome cover of it. After fooling around with the beginning motif for a while and basically figuring out the melody, I listened to the recording to see how accurate I was and figure out the changes. I was a major third off for the key and didn't have the melody exactly right but no matter. After really listening to it a few times I figured out what a cool song it was for both the harmony (chords) and the vocal harmony.

I am guess what I am getting at, is how does something like this happen? Meaning, what would have triggered this in my subconscious to come out? Like I said,I have heard the song enough but, there are TONS of other tunes that I could pick out (no pun intended) on the guitar just using my inner ear and long term memory, and I have. I just find it odd that a song that I don't really count as a favorite would just appear out of nowhere.

Has this happened to anyone else?
Happens to everyone. Happened to Charlie Parker at 0:46


Was that part of the Popeye theme song I heard at 0.46. ?
 

Stratocast

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Quite ordinary in my experience. It gets annoying when the tune that pops out is something obnoxious like a TV commercial jingle. Then it gets stuck in my head and won't go away for a while. Yuck.
Odd that you should say that. Our guitar player jokingly suggested if we ever get heckled at a gig. We should break out with the Oscar Meyer Weiner song and all shout in unison the part “everyone could take a bite of me. “. Lol
 

dasherf17

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I love playing my guitar, improvising over a wide array of tunes, and being in the zone or flow state. It's what I strive for all the time (either on or off a gig) when I am not practicing a specific concept.

Yesterday, while doing my best Bill Frisell with Telecaster impersonation I could, playing through a few tunes, I found myself playing with the beginning melody of "California Dreamin" by the Mamas and Papas. I was never a fan of this band, or this tune - although George Benson did a pretty awesome cover of it. After fooling around with the beginning motif for a while and basically figuring out the melody, I listened to the recording to see how accurate I was and figure out the changes. I was a major third off for the key and didn't have the melody exactly right but no matter. After really listening to it a few times I figured out what a cool song it was for both the harmony (chords) and the vocal harmony.

I am guess what I am getting at, is how does something like this happen? Meaning, what would have triggered this in my subconscious to come out? Like I said,I have heard the song enough but, there are TONS of other tunes that I could pick out (no pun intended) on the guitar just using my inner ear and long term memory, and I have. I just find it odd that a song that I don't really count as a favorite would just appear out of nowhere.

Has this happened to anyone else?

Just to answer the heading...yes...
I was in a band where we played Bonnie Raitt's Runaway (I had an unusually high range at the time...>sigh<). In the lead break I put in the lead to George Harrison's Ski-ing (Wonderwall Music LP)...it fit and went over well in a few places with people saying "I've heard that lead before, what was it ?"
 

dasherf17

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25 mi SE of Rogers (South Minneapolis)...
Happens all the time!

Sometimes, it's just a sequence we're trying to play on a song and our brain (amazing) takes us off into a totally different direction.......

I was playing Twist and Shout one day and ended up playing La Bamba......

I often find myself playing songs or riffs just out of the blue with no intention of sitting down to play said song.....

It also happens differently and can be dependant on the guitar I have in my hands at the time...I have a Gretsch G5422G-12 (12 String) and outs of the blue I ended playing Byrds songs that I've never played before but grew up loving......

So yes, you are not alone......lol
So true, br...the sound that comes out of different guitars is enough to spark certain tunes...
Oh, by the way, a band I was in mashed TnS with LB...
 

Telelover1

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Gotta love those earworms! We've been watching Night Court streaming on 'flix, lately...that's something to take to bed with you...
I once had ‘Jungle Boogie’ as an ear worm that lasted two days.
It’s laying dormant in there..I’m sure of it.
 

dasherf17

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25 mi SE of Rogers (South Minneapolis)...
I have a built in Rolodex in my head. Yesterday Baker Street kept popping up in my head, next thing I knew I had a guitar in my hands and was figuring it out. This happens fairly often.
I have , typically, a two day process where I hear a song I either really like or really don't, but sticks with me...two days later I have it in my head, "full fidelity" almost like wearing headphones...and on repeat play...>UGH!<
 




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