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Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...] #2054172
03/25/13 05:26 PM
03/25/13 05:26 PM
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 2,206
Rocky Mountains
R
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014
rnaple  Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014

R

Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 2,206
Rocky Mountains
I guess I should check in. Even though you know I'm here. smile

I"m up to page 50. Reworking that material till this weekend.

Opened up Alfred's chords etc. book. Got a bunch of info. I'm overloaded. Need to reread.
Thought I"d take a break and read from my Theory book. Same stuff! Intervals, etc... I'm intimidated...need to reread and take it a little slower....
Went back to Alfred's 1... play...


Ron
Your brain is a sponge. Keep it wet. Mary Gae George
The focus of your personal practice is discipline. Not numbers. Scott Sonnon
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Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: rnaple] #2054230
03/25/13 07:34 PM
03/25/13 07:34 PM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 11
S
ShannanwL Offline
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ShannanwL  Offline
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S

Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 11
I love the Blues that is my best genre when playing but I want to lean toward more classical music. I am having a difficult time with Singing in the Rain and Laura but I am determined to get them this week. She hopes to graduate me the 2nd week in April to Level 2. We will see if I survive these two difficult songs. At last is not too bad so my main focus will be on these two songs.


Currently in Albert's Adult Basic Piano Level 2
Working on:
Light and Blue
Hungarian Rapashody
Bagatelle
Minuet by James Hook
Little Prelude
First Lessons in Bach- Minuet in G Major
Czerny Opus 599 Exercise 2
Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: ShannanwL] #2054263
03/25/13 08:43 PM
03/25/13 08:43 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 227
Brazil
Johnny D Offline
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Johnny D  Offline
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Brazil
Originally Posted by ShannanwL
I am having a difficult time with Singing in the Rain and Laura but I am determined to get them this week.

Hello ShannanwL. You seem to be cruising through the book. Great job!

As to Singing in the Rain, it gave me a bit of trouble at first, but then it kind of clicked.

Currently I am learning Laura. All the sharps and flats are making it kind of tricky for me. I still haven't managed to learn all of the right hand part correctly, but I started adding in the left hand. Wow! The piece really comes together with both hands. Love that jazzy sound. One part even reminded me of Garota de Ipanema.

Since you are near the end of the book, I am curious to what song you thought was the most difficult in the book. For me it was Amazing Grace.


1978 Dittrich Acoustic Upright
Alfred's 1 Graduate
Currently on Alfred's 2
Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Johnny D] #2054314
03/25/13 10:34 PM
03/25/13 10:34 PM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 11
S
ShannanwL Offline
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ShannanwL  Offline
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S

Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 11
Johnny D. Right now it is Laura. You are right all the sharps and flats makes it really difficult. I started Alfreds in October 2012. I have had prior piano experience as a child and teenager.

I will try learning one hand at a time for Laura that may help thanks for the advice.


Currently in Albert's Adult Basic Piano Level 2
Working on:
Light and Blue
Hungarian Rapashody
Bagatelle
Minuet by James Hook
Little Prelude
First Lessons in Bach- Minuet in G Major
Czerny Opus 599 Exercise 2
Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...] #2054321
03/25/13 10:48 PM
03/25/13 10:48 PM
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 103
Mojave Desert
hamlet cat Offline
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hamlet cat  Offline
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Posts: 103
Mojave Desert
Hello. I'm working on Amazing Grace, and am not sure if I'm doing the arpeggiated chord in the 19th bar correctly. Should I be playing the notes quickly in order D# - E - G, holding down each note until all are pressed, or is it press and then release, before going to the next note? I hope that makes sense. I've looked at Youtube videos, and they are too fast to know for sure. If I understand the instruction on page 79, its press and hold until all notes are depressed. But I'd like to confirm if this is correct, or perhaps both ways of doing it is correct.

Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: hamlet cat] #2054322
03/25/13 10:57 PM
03/25/13 10:57 PM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 11
S
ShannanwL Offline
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ShannanwL  Offline
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S

Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 11
Hamlet kat

Hold down to each note is pressed but you must do it quickly. You must also do this while playing a triplet which makes is sound sort of jazzy. It took me awhile to do it too.


Currently in Albert's Adult Basic Piano Level 2
Working on:
Light and Blue
Hungarian Rapashody
Bagatelle
Minuet by James Hook
Little Prelude
First Lessons in Bach- Minuet in G Major
Czerny Opus 599 Exercise 2
Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: ShannanwL] #2054334
03/25/13 11:37 PM
03/25/13 11:37 PM
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 103
Mojave Desert
hamlet cat Offline
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hamlet cat  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 103
Mojave Desert
Originally Posted by ShannanwL
Hamlet kat

Hold down to each note is pressed but you must do it quickly. You must also do this while playing a triplet which makes is sound sort of jazzy. It took me awhile to do it too.


Thanks for confirming that for me. I was playing it as you mentioned, when I started wondering. Don't want to memorize something incorrectly! smile

Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...] #2054423
03/26/13 06:12 AM
03/26/13 06:12 AM
Joined: Feb 2013
Posts: 131
UK
K
Kristina1 Offline
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Kristina1  Offline
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K

Joined: Feb 2013
Posts: 131
UK
Hello,
I have just started with the Alfred's Basic All in One
Adult Piano Course Book 1
and I would like to ask how you record yourself
to check-up and observe how you keep your fingers
on the keyboard etc. and how you sit whilst playing etc. ?

How can one check-up to make sure that a lesson
has been truly studied and it is time to move on
to the next lesson without a teacher?

Thanks from Kristina.


Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Kristina1] #2054519
03/26/13 10:34 AM
03/26/13 10:34 AM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 11
S
ShannanwL Offline
Junior Member
ShannanwL  Offline
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S

Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 11
I have never been self taught so I can not answer the question. I know before you start any of the harder songs you should be able to find most notes on the keyboard without looking at your hands. You should sit up straight and keep your hands curved. Pay attention to the fingering and timing. Also if you can play with minimal mistakes you can move on but revisit the song when possible.


Currently in Albert's Adult Basic Piano Level 2
Working on:
Light and Blue
Hungarian Rapashody
Bagatelle
Minuet by James Hook
Little Prelude
First Lessons in Bach- Minuet in G Major
Czerny Opus 599 Exercise 2
Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Kristina1] #2054572
03/26/13 01:05 PM
03/26/13 01:05 PM
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 1,138
Connecticut, USA
scorpio Offline
1000 Post Club Member
scorpio  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 1,138
Connecticut, USA
Hi Kristina1, welcome.

I think recording yourself with a video camera is a good idea. This method provides you with an opportunity to see what you are doing. Sometimes it is not easy to pick up mistakes while you are playing (posture, fingers, etc). But by viewing your own performance you will be able to critique your own practice. Also, if you put them on youtube you may find some that will help you.

As far as moving through the book, for me, I move on to the next set of songs when I can get a decent recording. By that time I have practiced many hours and have gone through the "red dot" (recording nerves) phase. It can be a long process.



Kawai MP11 : JBL LSR305 : Focusrite 2i4 : Pianoteq Standard

We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams. Willy Wonka


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Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...] #2054581
03/26/13 01:43 PM
03/26/13 01:43 PM
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,777
Italy
sinophilia Offline

Gold Supporter until Sept. 05 2014
sinophilia  Offline

Gold Supporter until Sept. 05 2014


Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,777
Italy
Kristina, I wouldn't stay on a piece for too long, IMO they're not meant to be memorized and performed perfectly, but to teach you specific techniques. It can take a long time to be able to play even an easy song up to tempo and get a satisfying recording. Personally, I pick a favorite song now and then as a 'keeper', but most of them I just forget after a couple of weeks. I tell myself, when I'm done with the Alfred's books I will have the freedom to play only what I like and devote all the time I want to it!


Diana & Wally - Yamaha W110BW
To create a beautiful sound, one must imagine it at first and then learn to produce fluid physical motions that breathe life into music. (Shirley Kirsten)
http://soundcloud.com/sinophilia - http://youtube.com/sinophilia
Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...] #2054962
03/27/13 04:45 AM
03/27/13 04:45 AM
Joined: Feb 2013
Posts: 131
UK
K
Kristina1 Offline
Full Member
Kristina1  Offline
Full Member
K

Joined: Feb 2013
Posts: 131
UK
Thank you for your constructive suggestions, Shannanwl, scorpio, and sinophilia,
it is very much appreciated.

I am currently working very hard to make sure about keeping my posture straight
and keep my fingers curved, especially the little finger on my right hand which started
to develop bad habits. Thanks again for mentioning Shannanawl.

I can imagine it is a long process to get the recording nerves right
and to be able to make a proper recording, thanks for mentioning, Scorpio.

Thanks for your thoughts, sinophilia. I understand how important it is
to study and stay on a piece long enough to learn
what that piece is instructing me to learn
and to practice that instruction enough so that I feel confident
not to forget it when I move on to the next part.

Thanks again from Kristina.


Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...] #2055474
03/28/13 02:57 AM
03/28/13 02:57 AM
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 4
D
Demae Ramen Offline
Junior Member
Demae Ramen  Offline
Junior Member
D

Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 4
Unfortunately I'm not really into blues, so going really slow here. I'll probably sit down and force myself to focus and learn them soon, since it's Easter break now.

Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...] #2055502
03/28/13 06:01 AM
03/28/13 06:01 AM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 66
M
mattroilanh_tt Offline
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mattroilanh_tt  Offline
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M

Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 66
Hi there. I am self-studying piano, using Alfred's Basic Adult Piano Course. Here is my new recording. I hope to receive comment from others so that I can adjust my mistake soon ^^. Thank you.

http://youtu.be/6P6BtZpnzJs


Current Work:
  • Alfred's Basic Adult Piano Course Level 1
  • Methode Rose
  • Suzuki Piano School Volume 1 & 2

Start Date: 11/01/2013
Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...] #2055798
03/28/13 04:39 PM
03/28/13 04:39 PM
Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 3,734
Ireland (ex England)
Z
zrtf90 Offline
3000 Post Club Member
zrtf90  Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Z

Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 3,734
Ireland (ex England)
Originally Posted by Kristina1
How can one check-up to make sure that a lesson has been truly studied and it is time to move on to the next lesson without a teacher?

This is a good question, Kristina, and is important, I suspect, for a lot of those self-studying with Alfred's and other methods.

The first step is to make a recording. You can't concentrate enough while you're playing to pick out all the errors and as a current thread will show, I can't even concentrate enough on a recording smile If you're not consistent enough to get an error free recording in a reasonable time that should point to a flaw.

One of the first things to listen for is wrong notes. If your own ear isn't strong enough to tell (and I'm finding out that mine is in such a category), get someone else to listen honestly and objectively. At the Alfred's level it doesn't have to be a professional but if you can't get anyone, posting a recording in the forums (or a PM to a willing volunteer) with a request to have them pointed out is an option. I am currently undergoing this kind of therapy. smile

Next up is dynamics. Are you obeying all the P's and F's, all the crescendos, decrescendos and hairpins (< and >)?

Are you getting all the accents (typically the first note of each measure but some are individually marked) and touches, legato, staccato, non-legato?

Are your phrases complete and unbroken and is there clear separation between phrases? Are they correctly inflected, with dynamics as well as pitch? This might be a bit advanced but it's never too soon to start improving in this area.

Is the melody clear enough above the accompaniment or, in canon, individually brought out? Listen to a good recording of a song and hear how much more prominent is the voice. This is difficult stuff to pull off on one instrument and it isn't worth holding yourself back trying to achieve it but it is still worth considering regarding your playing in general.

Is the tempo reasonable for the piece and your present ability? This is subjective but for me I need to be playing fast enough that I'm not having to concentrate in order to get the right notes.

In pieces that are beyond our sight-reading ability we go through what I consider to be distinct stages. This is specific to my (current) way of learning but it has universal features. The first, for me, is mechanical accuracy with a complete disregard for rhythm or tempo. Just being able to play the right notes with the right dynamics in the right order. This may entail difficult stretches, leaps, changing fingers on one key, a change of the whole hand position and other mechanical difficulties.

The second stage is when I'm familiar with the mechanical actions and can begin to think of the piece as music and start play rhythmically but slowly and thinking carefully about which finger and which key for each note in each phrase.

The third stage is when I can play each phrase and concern myself only with the first notes of each. The rest of the phrase is a semi automatic response to either the printed notes or the memorised sound or a mixture of both. There will be a much greater fluency in the playing and it is usually accompanied by a fairly noticeable rise in tempo without my having to bother about it. There will still be hesitations and pauses at the start of some phrases or patches of difficulty that I need to isolate and work on slowly.

Finally, there is a stage where I don't hesitate or stumble at any phrase or section and this is again signalled by a further automatic rise in tempo. At this stage the piece is memorised and fluent (for me) but not everybody memorises and I don't know how well others judge their arrival at this stage.

It's at this stage that a piece can be considered finished - for me. Others get to this stage before they add dynamics, phrasing and "polish". It's an individual thing - we all have our own methods, objectives, agendas and criteria.

Whether I'm at recital speed is another issue and, for me, is not an issue. There is a limit to my speed and my tempo usually increases over time from familiarity. I don't have to work at it. I'm not concerned with winning races. My own feeling is that tempo is personal and dynamic. If you can keep time with a metronome then you can keep time. If you can keep time with a metronome at recital speed then you can play faster without - if you choose to (it takes extra thinking time to synchronise with a metronome that slows down the paying) - and you are then free to 'interpret' the tempo and vary it in the piece.

If I can increase my speed in scales or in one of my faster pieces, it affects my playing across the board so I don't need to bring each piece up to a speed beyond comfortable.

Our progress is not measured by the difficulty or level of the pieces we play but by how well we play them. If you're progressing through Alfred's ask yourself honestly if the last piece you've learned is representative of your current ability. If it is, move on. If it isn't linger a while longer.

And as has been noted, there's no harm moving on to other pieces and returning to unfinished material after a spell away. We don't learn in gradual curves but by sudden jumps followed by longer plateaus. We need variety of material to see us through the plateaus and the Achievement of the Week thread to celebrate the jumps. smile



Richard
Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...] #2056528
03/29/13 08:48 PM
03/29/13 08:48 PM
Joined: Mar 2012
Posts: 12
M
MrSnrub Offline
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MrSnrub  Offline
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M

Joined: Mar 2012
Posts: 12
Hello. I want to learn how to play the piano. I take it this "Alfred's Basic Adult All-in-One Course, Book One: Lesson, Theory, Technic (Book and DVD)" is a good place to start? And just so I'm clear on this, this:

http://www.amazon.com/Alfreds-Basic-Adult-All-Course/dp/0739082426/ref=pd_bxgy_b_text_y

...is the book that this thread is talking about? I don't want to buy the wrong book.

Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: MrSnrub] #2056569
03/29/13 09:55 PM
03/29/13 09:55 PM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 11
S
ShannanwL Offline
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ShannanwL  Offline
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S

Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 11
yes. Welcome. I hope you enjoy your journey into the world of piano.


Currently in Albert's Adult Basic Piano Level 2
Working on:
Light and Blue
Hungarian Rapashody
Bagatelle
Minuet by James Hook
Little Prelude
First Lessons in Bach- Minuet in G Major
Czerny Opus 599 Exercise 2
Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: ShannanwL] #2056578
03/29/13 10:17 PM
03/29/13 10:17 PM
Joined: Mar 2012
Posts: 12
M
MrSnrub Offline
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MrSnrub  Offline
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M

Joined: Mar 2012
Posts: 12
Woo Hoo! It's ordered and on it's way! I'm gonna be the next Chilly Gonzales in no time!

Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...] #2056643
03/30/13 01:19 AM
03/30/13 01:19 AM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 59
Perth, Australia (Originally f...
A
Alux Offline
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Alux  Offline
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A

Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 59
Perth, Australia (Originally f...
Hello beautiful people!

Seeing how this is my very first post let me start off by introducing myself. I'm Alex, currently living in Western Australia, originally from Kingston NY & having a great time butchering the keyboards for the past several months. I took lessons when I was around 8 for a couple of years only to lose interest by not only being taught to play by ear only, but having a teacher who refused to deviate from John Thompson's lessons with outside material.

I stumbled across this forum by sheer chance a couple of weeks ago and read up on some of the previous post. The advice & experienced shared by all of you has reassured me that some of the difficulties & uncertainties I experienced thus far are not unique just to me (such as the dreaded "teacup pinkie" as well as my first stumbling block in the form of Little Brown Jug).

Currently I've been using the Alfred's All-In-One from the start and presently battling my way thru page 119 (Little Brown Jug), patiently working on page 120 (Chaipanecas) & polishing up page 123 (Auld Lang Syne) with the occasional foray into Alfred's Greatest Hits to break things up a bit as well as Alfred's Adult Jazz/Rock Course on order.

Have a good Easter everyone & look forward to hearing from you all soon :-)

~Alex~


Kawai CA95
Alfred's Adult All-In-One Level 2
Alfred's Adult All-In-One Level 1 Graduate
Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: MrSnrub] #2056655
03/30/13 02:31 AM
03/30/13 02:31 AM
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 103
Mojave Desert
hamlet cat Offline
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hamlet cat  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 103
Mojave Desert
Originally Posted by MrSnrub
Woo Hoo! It's ordered and on it's way! I'm gonna be the next Chilly Gonzales in no time!


Excellent! With that attitude, Chilly himself will be looking in his rear view mirror to see you fast approaching.

Just watch those speed bumps like Blow The Man Down and Amazing Grace. You'll see what I mean when you get there.

But the journey is fun, and well worth it. You picked a good method to learn with.

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