Reading Music Lesson #40: Slurs And Ties

reading music lessonSlurs and ties can be easily confused with each other since they look very similar.

So, what’s the difference?

Slurs

A slur connects two or more different notes together using a curved line.

slurs

This means we are to play or sing the notes very smoothly (or legato) with no break in the sound.  There should be no silence in between the notes. [Read more...]

Reading Music Lesson #38: Dotted Half Notes

reading music lessonDotted half notes look just like what they are called…a half note with a dot beside it.

dotted half note

In order to fully understand them, we need to first learn about the dot rule.

The what rule?

Okay, I’ll be honest with you.  There is no official “dot rule” in music theory.

If you research it, you won’t find anything.

This is something my teacher shared with me many years ago and it just really makes sense.

It’s stuck with me all this time and it seems to help a lot of my own students.

He didn’t have a name for it, so I just made something up that I thought worked. [Read more...]

Major Chords For Beginner 5-Finger Piano (Ebook)

Major Chords For Beginner 5-Finger PianoThe Major Chords For Beginner 5-Finger Piano Ebook was created to help get started playing and reading tonic or I chords quickly in all major keys.

Not only does it give you the opportunity to develop stronger music reading skills, but stronger hands also.

This is a great step for the beginner who plans to work on bigger, more complicated chords later.

What’s It About?

This Ebook is a set of piano charts featuring a different major chord on each page.

Key Features:

  • The name of each major chord.
  • A diagram of a keyboard showing you how to get started.
  • The chord written on the music staff with fingering and letter names of the notes.

[Read more...]

Major Arpeggios For Beginner 5-Finger Piano (Ebook)

Major Arpeggios For Beginner 5-Finger PianoThe Major Arpeggios For Beginner 5-Finger Piano Ebook is designed to help you get started playing and reading all major arpeggios quickly.

It’s also great way to practice moving your left hand over the right while playing the piano.

Not only are you working on your music reading skills, but developing control and coordination.

What’s Inside

This Ebook is really a set of piano charts with one arpeggio printed largely on each page for easier reading.

You can practice them without the pedal first and then add in the pedal holding it down while you play an entire arpeggio. [Read more...]

Reading Music Lesson #37: The 2/4 Time Signature

Reading Music LessonThis time signature is very similar to the 3/4 time signature and the 4/4 time signature.

The main difference is having only two beats in a measure instead of three or four.

The 2/4 Time Signature

Here are the two most important things to remember:

1) The top number “2” tells us the notes and rests are organized in such a way between the bar lines that only two beats can be found in each measure.

2) The bottom number indicates that a quarter note will receive one beat.

Let’s take a look at the example below to learn how to assign the counting.

The 2/4 Time Signature

[Read more...]

Major Scales For Beginner 5-Finger Piano (Ebook)

Major Scales For Beginner 5-Finger PianoThis little Ebook is designed to help you get started playing the first 5 notes of all major scales quickly and easily.

It’s really a collection of easy-to-read piano charts that can be used in any order.

On each page, you will find…

  • The name of each major scale.
  • A keyboard showing you how to find the keys you need.
  • The scale written on the music staff with the letter names of notes and finger numbers.

Why Is It Called 5-Finger?

Because you only need 5 fingers to play each scale!  In other words, the scales are only 5 notes long.  It’s great for any beginner learning how to play the piano and read music. [Read more...]

How To Practice Using The 3 Good Ones In-A-Row Method

how to practiceHave you ever read the book, The Little Book of Talent: 52 Tips for Improving Your Skills by Daniel Coyle?

If you haven’t, I highly recommend you pick up a copy.

It’s a short, easy read full of powerful ideas.

I combined a few of these great tips together and came up with the 3 Good Ones In-A-Row method that I use for myself and my students.

It’s simple, time efficient, fun, and it produces incredible results.

The 3 Good Ones In-A-Row Method

Step 1: Find one small chunk to practice. (one measure, one line of music, one scale, etc.) [Read more...]

13 Musician Jokes That Will Make You Chuckle

musician jokesNeed a stress relief?

Here’s a fun list of 13 musician jokes that will surely put a smile on your face.

(NOTE: You can substitute the instrument listed for a different kind…but I didn’t tell you that.)

1) Banjo players spend half their lives tuning and the other half playing out of tune.

2) Did you hear about the bassist who was so out of tune the bass section noticed?

3) What’s the definition of a quarter tone?  A harpist tuning unison strings. [Read more...]