Saturday, February 19, 2011

The discipline of writing has always been a struggle. Rather than expand on the struggle itself, suffice for now to acknowledge the imposition of a writing discipline on myself precisely because it is difficult. Like practicing; it's much less effective if you devote that time to what you already can do. Social networking (Facebook, YouTube...) imposes even more of all this thru discussion threads. It's become like reading (for me); several books (at least) opened at once, as I bounce around between them. It all moves forward, just slowly (in any individual case). Here's an "in progress" thread, copied from the comments to my YouTube video for "Lessons for the Thoughtful Pianist - 1A - The Foundation, and Practice of Playing By Ear":

comment:
this is great, I am actually trying to learn to read music, people think that playing by ear is a "magical gift." Maybe by some point it is. But I remember working so hard at it as a teenager, and listening to Bach chorales on cassette in the kitchen with my ear mashed against the speaker, and running to the piano, and either yes I would get it, or no I wouldn't and have to go back to the cassette... it is definitely nothing magical ;-) and *not a little* frustrating... but learnable, for sure

reply:
Your comment is great, too :)
That nearly every toddler learns to verbally communicate before learning to read or write, simply by living in the environment where that happens should be all we need to know. Thanks!

comment:
Good point!! I do recall, before the more intensive ear training, that I got a tiny toy electric organ for Christmas when I was 7. I had no idea what it was good for and was so disappointed ;-) but I randomly started at the top note, a C, and with one finger I plunked my way down all the white keys in succession, and-- surprise, it sounded like "Joy to the World"!! Fitting song for Christmas day! THEN I got interested! but like you say that is a normal way to start ear training

reply:
This is interesting, as I received my second toy piano (this one with 2 octaves of real black and white keys) at 5, and remember plunking out Jingle Bells (first) with one finger. 45 years later, I’m still on that same path of growing in expression, and that’s what’s it’s about, right?

So now, the more I write (lessons), the more I write (discussion threads), the more I write ...

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