have a tin ear

have a tin ear

1. If someone has a tin ear, they are not able to hear and understand music well. Some people may have a tin ear but everybody has at least a basic sense of rhythm. Note: You can also say that people have a tin ear for other things that you have to listen to in order to understand them. For a playwright, he has a tin ear for dialogue.
2. If someone has a tin ear for something, they do not understand it fully. Nothing in her past suggests anything other than a tin ear for democratic politics. Compare with have an ear for something.
See also: ear, have, tin

have a tin ear

be tone-deaf.
See also: ear, have, tin

have a tin ˈear (for something)

(informal) be unable to hear the difference between musical notes or to enjoy music: Even those of us with a tin ear can recognize a waltz.
See also: ear, have, tin