CMajor's Classroom Online Course Has Started...CMajor has posted content on Blog Talk Radio, Spreaker, WordPress, YouTube and all of her regular social media. Follow the reading if you can. It's going to be fun to share music theory and music basics with you! I look forward to seeing your homework online. If you need any additional tips for ways to complete the homework, please feel free to let me know. I encourage you to work toward accuracy, becoming more perceptive when it comes to music making and building your confidence. You can do it! See you soon!
CMaJOR'S CLASSROOM ONLINE COURSE HAS STARTED...
CMajor's PODCASTING LIVE!...now on BlogTalkRadio AND SPREAKER
Welcome to CMajor's brand new episode on getting ready to play the piano, now featured on BlogTalk Radio. You'll discover how to pick out the right keyboard or piano for yourself. We'll go over some music basics and take it from there. You may be wondering, what is the right type of piano or keyboard--How many keys will you need? Will you need something that feels like a real piano? Is it better to purchase a real piano over a digital piano? Do you have the space for an upright or grand piano? Once you've decided on a piano, what type of music do you wish to learn to play? Do you really want to just sit down and play the piano? Some students only want to learn to read music. In my opinion, playing and piano and reading the notes are two different approaches. You can learn to play the piano in three months or so. Becoming musically literate and reading the notes on a staff may take considerably longer, i.e. up to two years with steady practice and careful attention. We'll talk about the best way for you to get started according to your learning style and take it from there. Listen to the upcoming episode as well on How to Play by Chords and By Ear. Good luck!
Sight-reading Tips & Resources
Hi. Welcome back to CMajor's blog. Today's blog is about Performance directions. Many of CMajor's students are new to performance directions. By the time students are studying Grade 2 level materials provided by ABRSM (Associated Board of Royal Schools of Music), they need to know certain words and signs and remember the ones they learned in Grade 1. The words are in Italian. For instance, if I say "giacoso", I expect my piano students to understand that this word means "graceful". If the music says, "grave", the student needs to know that this means, "very slow, solemn". Performance Directions can be fun because they can help bring the music to life. The signs students need to learn in Grade 2 include accent signs over or under a note. A slur with dots inside means that the notes are placed 'semi-staccato'. In other words, play the notes less separated. And now a short quiz for you--1. What is the sign for crescendo? 2. What does 'crescendo' mean? 3. What is the sign for 'mezzo forte'? 4. What does mezzo forte mean? And, the last question---5. Can you give the meaning of Lento? Send CMajor an email right here on her Bandzoogle site with your answers. CMajor can send you a FREE picture of a fun sticker reward of your choice if all of your answers are correct. Good luck with your upcoming performances! Keep in touch!
READING NOTES ON THE GRAND STAFF
READING NOTES ON THE GRAND STAFF
Step by step and day by day you can learn to name the parts of a Grand Staff. It's "one step at a time", as my mom says. In the picture of music associated with this blog post/look, you will notice a treble clef sign. There is also a bass clef sign pictured as well. There are many ways to explain the grand staff and its parts. For instance, the Edna Mae Burnam, all-in-one method uses the name "fence" to explain the grand staff. It says, and I quote, "The music name for 'fence' is a staff." The method goes on to say, "This is a brace. It holds the treble and bass staffs together and forms a grand staff so that we can read notes from the entire keyboard." There is also a brief discussion of hand placements and lines and spaces. Some methods, such as the Michael Aaron Piano Course state, "The treble and bass staffs are joined together by a BRACE to form the GRAND STAFF". Another method, The Ada Richter Piano Course says, "In piano music we use two staves--one for the high notes, one for the low. This is called a GRAND STAFF". Sometimes methods may instead opt to introduce clef signs separately at first, such as in the John Thompson's Easiest Piano Course. For a more in depth discussion of piano methods, you are invited to come over to my CMajor band page 24/7. There is no pressure to make a purchase of books. But, I can give you FREE advice on which book may benefit you in your quest to learn to play the piano. Hope to see you here soon!
ACCIDENTALS - OOPS! WE NEED TO REMEMBER...
Accidentals in music theory terms are no accident. They are signs that we need to remember. What is a sign that looks like a number sign called? It's called a sharp. What does it do to the note that follows it? It raises the note by a semitone. The sign that looks like a lowercase "b" is called a flat sign. It lowers the note that follows it by a semitone. Each sign has it's own function. For example, if you draw a natural sign in front of certain notes, it will cancel out any flat or sharp sign. In the words of Eric Taylor, author of the Music Theory in Practice series, the signs for sharps, flats and naturals are called accidentals. Sometimes my students have trouble viewing the accidentals. They sometimes confuse the lines and the staffs that the accidentals appear on. I remind them to look closely at the time signature as well as the accidental. I agree with Eric Taylor that it is important to draw accidentals clearly so that you can see which note each sign belongs to. Accidentals are things that you learn early on in piano lessons. If you have any questions or concerns about accidentals, please feel free to contact me. I am always glad to answer any questions you may have about music theory.
Time Signatures - What do They All Mean (Reprise)
Time Signatures - What do they all mean?
Hi again. Thanks for stopping in to see me here from LinkedIn and Facebook. There are many neat resources about time signatures that are out there. Please see the resources that I recommend below.
Please click on the following "click URLs" to search/advance search for resources that can help you understand the full meaning of various time signatures. The links will take you directly to Sheet Music Plus where you use the search box/button to find the following titles:
Glover Piano Theory, Primer (click on the link below; cut and paste or re-type the book title to search for this item.)
Eric Taylor, Music Theory in Practice, Grade 2 (click on the link below; cut and paste or re-type the book title to search for this item.)
Eric Taylor, The AB Guide to Music Theory, Part I (click on the link below; cut and paste or re-type the book title to search for this item.)
Note: If you need more tips and resources on Music Theory, please send me your comments and messages. Leave a comment or share. I'd be glad to hear from you. Also, once you've purchased and received your books, please feel free to contact me with your questions and concerns about time signatures. I look forward to hearing from you.
Note: Time values and time signatures are two different terms.
Recently, I attended this year's academic festival at Teachers College, Columbia University. I had such an amazing time that I made a video tribute and shared with the TC Community. You can see the video posting here: https://www.facebook.com/TeachersCollegeAlumni/videos/10155202220347719/. I am giving back to Teachers College along with so many other alumni. By sharing my TC experience with anyone who would like to hear it, I believe I can contribute to "making a world of difference". Overall, I had so many positive experiences during my time at TC. I also had a definitive path that led me to go to Teachers College. In recent years, especially, through Academic Festivals, alumni networking, teaching jobs that I've had, performing in New York and managing my career as an artist I've come to realize just how much Teachers College gave to me. As I continue my work in the arts and music, I would like to share ways that will let others know about the journey and the experience on-site and off-site during my time at TC and how it has helped me to be forward thinking. The most valuable lesson has been to use my arts administration training to lead my own career as an independent artist. ARAD (Arts Administration) graduates typically go on to work in diverse arts administration organizations around the world. But, I've been able to hold onto my passion and keep moving forward by using my marketing skills and programming ideas in my work as an independent artist. Without the influence of Teachers College in my life and through teachers that I've had, I probably would not have had the courage or the desire to become CMajor. Usually it's the reverse, I think. Many arts administrators begin their careers as artists and then decide to commit to leading an organization. I did the opposite. After my internship in marketing and pr at the New York Philharmonic and following a brief management career in community arts and foundation arts, I decided that I wanted to focus mostly on recording, performing and teaching. #BecauseofArtsAdministration, I'm able to give back in ways that promote and support the arts from an artist's point-of-view. As I continue my journey, I would like to always make some time to say, "Thanks to TC!" #TCMade #TCAcFest