Thank you for writing the book and answering my e-mail.
I have problems when I practice implicit polymeters. How do you keep track of both meters? Do you have any practice advice? Is there anything specific that you do?
In order to keep track of both meters I would suggest that you go through the following steps:
Pick your poison:
Decide if you are going to use number or konokol syllables for your odd meter groupings. Once you’ve made a decision, stick with it!
I personally prefer konokol because it is easier for me to pronounce faster. Which one is better for you? You’ll never know until you try…
Note: If you are not familiar with konokol, I would highly recommend purchasing a copy of “The Gateway To Rhythm” by John McLaughlin and Selvaganesh Vinayakram. I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned this video before, but it is definitely worth a second mention. Once you view it, there will be no mystery as to why this is one of my favorite instructional videos of all time…
Before anything else, reciting odd meter groupings should become second nature to you. Practice groupings like 2+3, 3+2, 4+3, 4+4+3+2, or any others that you can think of to the point where you do not have to focus on reciting them.
Visualize your second meter/ the “Count Von Count Method”:
While keeping time I tap my left foot, as I am sure you do too. While keeping two meters simultaneously, I tend to “pay attention” to the meter my part focuses on. The second meter is always kept/“taken over” by my left leg. I always visualize big, white, “Sesame Street” numbers that change with the beat on top of that leg as well.
I think that this has a lot to do with the fact that I watched a lot of “Sesame Street” as a kid, and loved counting "with" Count Van Count.
Practice alternating second meters over a static meter:
A good exercise you could do is to tap quarter notes with your left foot while indicating the beat number by holding up fingers with your hand. As you do this, recite four bars worth of odd meter groupings. After the four bars of the second meter have passed, start reciting a new odd meter for four bars. Start with one or two meter changes and work your way to as many as you can. The long term goal is to be able to shift at will.
Be thorough with your groupings:
Write a list of different groupings per meter to make sure that you don’t always practice the same groupings.
Have fun and improvise:
After you can do the exercises provided above, grab your guitar and start improvising over a one chord vamp in 4/4 while you do this.
Next, attempt to make your meters meet. End your second meter where the first meter ends, and start a new second meter on the downbeat of a new bar for the first meter.
Once you can do this, practice playing a second meter over chord changes, then attempt to make your meters meet over them.
I hope that these exercises help you. Good Luck!