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Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112546
07/12/08 12:29 PM
07/12/08 12:29 PM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 429
U.S.A
KaylaX Offline OP
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Wow, Thanks Everyone. There is allot of great music suggestions here and allot of advice. I will keep on trudging along.

Debbie 57,
Im with you when it comes to trying a new piece. I will sight read it and then try it and if it does not hit me right then I add it to my piano bench collection. I also have a collection that I know is above my head but I dont want to forget about the piece so I buy it anyway for future playing. My lessons are once a week for 1/2 hr. And that half hour just flies by. By the time we get done reviewing my two lesson books its time to go. Im thinking that when my teacher comes back next month I might have to change something. Maybe a longer lesson. Hey, if you have any questions or something about what I have PM me. Id be happy to answer any questions or whatever.

Kawai,HI,
Ya know, Usually getting out and riding my horse is what I do to get rid of stress but its been so dang hot and smoky here. Its terrible, so maybe thats part of my frustration, I have been locked up in this house with my kids for like ummmm 3 weeks. We have gotten out here and there but we have huge fires nearby and all the smoke is hanging out in this valley. Also my teacher is on vacation, so I think im feeling kinda lost. Ill get over it.

DragonPianoPlayer and Donna R,
You both have some really great suggestions for some new music that I think I might have to add to my collection. My husband just rolls his eyes when he see's me printing more music out. Let alone bringing home more music books eveytime I go into town ( not very often). He thinks I need to learn to play what I have. But its hard explaining to him that its all to hard. Or that I bought a whole book for just two pieces that I like. Anyway, I just heard some Martha Mier stuff the other day and I like it, also, I just found Catherine Rollins book yesturday and the first piece looks doable. I will definitely look into the others that you both mentioned. Also, DragonPianoPlayer that would be quite and undertaking to list all my sheet music. but it would definitely me interesting. Actually I need to organize it all by level. And im sure you and Monica have far more than me.

Ummm thats about it for now, Thank you everyone for your input.

AspenX smile




Yamaha P115 Keyboard
A very old outta tune Baby Grand
A stack of piano music that I cant play !!!
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Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112547
07/12/08 06:28 PM
07/12/08 06:28 PM
Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 842
Atlanta, GA
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saerra Offline
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saerra  Offline
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Atlanta, GA
smile Heya AspenX -

Just wanted to add a few words of encouragement! Hang in there, I think it surely gets better wink but 3 months is really, really a very short time.

One thing - I saw you said, "I will sight read it and then try it and if it does not hit me right then I add it to my piano bench collection." - I think it was already said above - but just b/c you can't sightread it easily, doesn't mean you shouldn't work on it - it just takes a bit more detailed, slow work. Take a measure or phrase and as slow as you need to, start playing the notes and figuring out how they work. Go slow smile and work up to the next measure/phrase. Don't give up if the first pass isn't particularily good (or easy!)

(That said, definitely there are things that are too hard at one's current level - if they're frustrating to learn, even slow, I do tend to put them aside for later.)

Hang in there smile and have fun smile

Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112548
07/12/08 07:09 PM
07/12/08 07:09 PM
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 8,483
Ohio, USA
signa Offline
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signa  Offline
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Ohio, USA
if i were you, i'd put away some music and concentrate on 2-3 pieces at a time only. you cannot expect too much at one time, but organize your practice more efficiently. without focus, you'd waste a lot of time and don't see your progress.

my advice is 'organize' and 'focus', which is my teacher's advice to me before.

Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112549
07/18/08 12:16 PM
07/18/08 12:16 PM
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 30
the Netherlands
Chaplin Offline
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the Netherlands
I'm new on this forum (introduction in the general beginners forum) and we started our piano adventure about the same time. I've found it also very difficult to find nice doable sheet music. In addition to al the suggestions I also have a few: For nice free beginners sheet music your can also search on
- 8notes
- solosheets.blogspot (no [URL=http://www.)nic]www.) nice music in new age style and
- freesheetmusicguide is a free offer to download the scores of Davids Nevue's piece Solitude (as it is a promotional gesture of David Nevue it's perfectly legal - no 'stealing')

And a Dutch site
pianospel (you've to add .nl)-->bladmuziek (especially the piece Sunny Morning is quite nice)

I know how frustrating is is when you seem not to be able to play something your level but I'm sure you'll find something suitable.

Greetings from
Chaplin thumb


"Two roads diverged in a wood, and I —
I took the 'one less traveled' by,
And that has made all the difference.

"The road not Taken"
Robert Frost (1874-1963)
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112550
07/18/08 02:12 PM
07/18/08 02:12 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 122
Florida
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Fitswimmer Offline
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Florida
Quote
Originally posted by signa:
if i were you, i'd put away some music and concentrate on 2-3 pieces at a time only. you cannot expect too much at one time, but organize your practice more efficiently. without focus, you'd waste a lot of time and don't see your progress.

my advice is 'organize' and 'focus', which is my teacher's advice to me before.
This is excellent advice, my teacher has said something very similar. I keep one piece for "fun" outside of my regular lesson work. I might only be able to polish one line off a month-but I'll eventually get it.

I too,have a large collection of "I'm going to be able to play this someday" music. I figure, it doesn't go bad, and it gives me a reason to keep practicing-also to keep eating right and exercising. I'm going to have to live a long and healthy life to work my way through my collection!


I have a deep and satisfying relationship with my Yamaha U1...
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112551
07/18/08 02:46 PM
07/18/08 02:46 PM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 429
U.S.A
KaylaX Offline OP
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KaylaX  Offline OP
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I have done exactly what "Signa" has suggested. I have my three books that my teacher has me working out of, I have a fun book that I picked a fun piece to work on for me, and then I have my theory book, and thats about it. This system seems to be working for me right now. My next step is to formulate everything into a schedule. Oh and I forgot I have my "Dozen a day" finger excercises book that I picked up too. Yes, I need to do a schedule!!!!!And I still want to find a challenge piece to work on also.

But ya I agree, that was excellent advice!!!!

Thanks, AspenX, One step at a time.............




Yamaha P115 Keyboard
A very old outta tune Baby Grand
A stack of piano music that I cant play !!!
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112552
07/18/08 03:40 PM
07/18/08 03:40 PM
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,091
Richmond, VA
plays88skeys Offline
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plays88skeys  Offline
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Richmond, VA
AspenX, your posts took me back to when I began adult lessons. I recall only too well the frustration of having a lot of music inside of me but no means of releasing it.

I bought a lot of music too, expecting to be able to play it immediately. The ones that gave me the greatest amount of enjoyment turned out to be books of Christmas carols and big note books. Even then, it took the patience to play everything "go to sleep slow" until I understood it before it began sounding like anything recognizable. Maybe this would work for you, too.

Just enjoy the journey -- there is no final destination, as the learning can go on for a lifetime at any level!


There are no shortcuts to any place worth going. - Beverly Sills
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112553
07/18/08 05:59 PM
07/18/08 05:59 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,049
Phoenix Metro, AZ
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ProdigalPianist Offline
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Phoenix Metro, AZ
Dear Frustrated,

You already have more than enough to do with the assigned stuff from your teacher. Stop spending all this time and energy looking for "something you can play" and spend that practicing! Then you will be able to play all that you have that much sooner!

So there! wink
Mean old Liz...who should take her own advice and stay out of the $1 bin at the music store...

ps - I give myself this lecture several times a week...hope it helps you... cool


Adult Amateur Pianist

My only domestic quality is that I live in a house.
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112554
07/18/08 06:18 PM
07/18/08 06:18 PM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 429
U.S.A
KaylaX Offline OP
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KaylaX  Offline OP
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PridigalPianist,

The stuff from my teacher is kid stuff its so booooring, and I speed through it very quickly. BUt you have a good point. I have disscontinued my search for that perfect piece. I am staying PUT with what I have. And you are double right!!!! I need to get on to practicing!!!!!

Im off to my piano....... Ta Ta for now

AspenX smile




Yamaha P115 Keyboard
A very old outta tune Baby Grand
A stack of piano music that I cant play !!!
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112555
07/18/08 06:56 PM
07/18/08 06:56 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,049
Phoenix Metro, AZ
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ProdigalPianist Offline
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Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,049
Phoenix Metro, AZ
Aspenx,
I would have a talk with your teacher. If your music is boring and you speed through it quickly, I am guessing you are not working on the details and striving for 'perfection' the way your teacher wants.

Playing piano well is so much more than hitting all the notes...how are your dynamics? Your tone? Are you playing evenly?

This is the stuff to work on when you are a 'beginner' and it is *essential* to have a strong foundation when it comes time to play harder pieces...or it bites you in the butt! Trust me...I have the butt scars to prove it!! : laugh

I would say either you need to pay attention and actually work on *all* the aspects your teacher tells you when practicing wink or, if that is *not* the case, ask your teacher if you can move up a bit to a bit more challenging pieces...

DIdn't you say you were working on John Thompson? That is generally not considered a "too easy" method...it's great for preparing you for serious classical repertoire. But you have to know *HOW* you should be practicing, and not just what pages. thumb


Adult Amateur Pianist

My only domestic quality is that I live in a house.
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112556
07/18/08 07:15 PM
07/18/08 07:15 PM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 429
U.S.A
KaylaX Offline OP
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KaylaX  Offline OP
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ProdigalPianist,

It seems like my teacher skips allot. I have noticed that in my books a piece will call for soft parts and other parts played louder so I was trying to concentrate on stuff like that as I practiced and she told me not to worry about it so we skipped that part. As long as I play the pieces correctly ( to her liking) then she passes me and I get a happy stamp. Yes, I am working out of Thompsons grade 1 ( I just started it) and Schaums A the red book. Also Fabers performance book level 1.

My teacher ONLY works out of those two books, and I DO do what she tells me too when I practice. Actually, come to think of it she hasnt told me anything about how I practice. I do my songs in the book, meet with her, play the songs, get a happy stamp, she assigns me the next couple of pages, and then I leave. Thats about it. I do theory on my own. She hasnt told me any aspects of how to practice. She didnt even assign me any warm-ups, I had to ask for that. I also had to ask about theory too.

Sorry if that dissappointing, You got any pointers????? You can PM me if ya want. Im always open to any suggestions.

AspenX




Yamaha P115 Keyboard
A very old outta tune Baby Grand
A stack of piano music that I cant play !!!
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112557
07/18/08 07:22 PM
07/18/08 07:22 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,049
Phoenix Metro, AZ
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ProdigalPianist Offline
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ProdigalPianist  Offline
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Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,049
Phoenix Metro, AZ
Hmmm....maybe tell your teacher you want to be challenged more?

Sometimes, teachers will assume that an adult student isn't as serious or wouldn't be interested in working on the finer points or becoming advanced like a kid would be. I don't really like having a different standard for adult students...

I suppose the assumption is that any of the kids might go on to study music in college or play professionally, but an adult wouldn't. That attitude really cheats adult students, in my opinion, out of the opportunity to get as good as they can.

I hesitate to suggest this...but, depending on the answer you get when/if you bring this up with your teacher, perhaps you might want to consider moving to a teacher who is willing to challenge you, demand excellence, and not let you "skip stuff" (much less tell you 'not to worry about it'!...unless of course, you're already doing it just fine)


Adult Amateur Pianist

My only domestic quality is that I live in a house.
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112558
07/18/08 07:49 PM
07/18/08 07:49 PM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 429
U.S.A
KaylaX Offline OP
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KaylaX  Offline OP
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Posts: 429
U.S.A
Ya know,

Ill chat with my teacher. She is on vacation this month. But I have been pondering about searching out a new teacher possibly. I dont like to skip stuff, and not worry about other stuff. I figure if its in a lesson book then its in there for a reason. She says im doing well, and she says I have really good rhythm. I was in marching band for 6 yrs in grade school. Of course im 35 now so that was years ago. Anyway, I will definitely chat with her cause I dont want to cheat the piano learning process. I live in a small town so there isnt allot of teachers to choose from. And im not sure she really has had allot of adult students, I have a feeling she gets allot of kids that really dont care about playing, much less practicing at home. So, wish me luck in chatting with my teacher.

Meanwhile, I am going to work on making a practice schedule.

Thanks for your advice, AspenX




Yamaha P115 Keyboard
A very old outta tune Baby Grand
A stack of piano music that I cant play !!!
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112559
07/18/08 09:39 PM
07/18/08 09:39 PM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 321
Gulf Coast
Babs_ Offline
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AspenX

I think you are being too hard on yourself. After all you've only being playing a short time. Be patient. It takes time to learn to play the piano.

First of all I would stick with your teacher for now, especially since there are a limited supply of them where you live. Of course you could always talk to her about your concerns. Its important to have a teacher that you can communicate with . I would try and work things out with her first before you start looking for another teacher anyway.

Maybe what you need to do is find a song that moves you. Is the teacher letting you pick out which song you want to play? Once you find a song that moves you you might be more motivated to practice. When you pick the song that excites you , make sure it is on you level. Don't pick a song that is over your level it will only frustrate you.

Musicnotes.com is a good sheetmusic webite to go exploring for music on your level. Find a song that you like and pull up the sheetmusic. The website allows you to see the sheetmusic before purchasing. I have seen alot of nice easy music on that website. Just the other day I saw some nice easy sheetmusic for the song Imagine by John Lennon.


Hang out on PW there are always alot of other people in the same boat as you are that are willing to lend you a helping hand.

Hope the fires are letting up. I dealt with those one year in Florida and it was so nasty going outside and breathing in that smoke, I could even feel that smoke feeling up my lungs just sitting in the house, fortunately we never had to evacuate, the fires were miles away and it was the wind that was blowing the smoke in our direction.

Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112560
07/19/08 12:00 AM
07/19/08 12:00 AM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 429
U.S.A
KaylaX Offline OP
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Thanks Babs,

Hey, I really like your avatar!!!I also like your little saying on your signature line. Ya, im on the fence about finding a new teacher. This one is really flexible with scheduling and she lets me bring my daughter to my lesson if i need to. And she is a really nice person. I just dont feel challenged. I will talk to her about it though. I also figure that as I get a little more into I will be more challenged. Like right now am being challenged with the fingering. I just started learning G-major position, and im used to c-major position. We shall see what happens. ( Most likely ill hang with her for awhile).

The fires are finally under control. But for awhile there it was intense here. Ash all over, kids coughing, couldnt really see. Pretty nasty stuff.

Thanks for the post. I really appreciate it. You seem like a really nice person laugh

AspenX




Yamaha P115 Keyboard
A very old outta tune Baby Grand
A stack of piano music that I cant play !!!
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112561
07/19/08 12:15 AM
07/19/08 12:15 AM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 788
Massapequa, NY
hotkeys Offline
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Massapequa, NY
Keep at it aspenx,

I am experiencing the same issues. I am working with an online course by Andrew Lemanzyk on YouTube. I am trying different methods and like to take the best of what I learned. Nobody told me there were many different ways of playing the piano!

- Mark


...The ultimate joy in music is the joy of playing the piano...
Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112562
07/19/08 04:08 AM
07/19/08 04:08 AM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 684
Ireland
Ragtime Clown Offline
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Posts: 684
Ireland
You are going through a very similar experience that I had recently. I was so frustrated that I complicated things even further by looking too far ahead.

My previous teacher put the idea into my head before he retired that I was playing to Grade 3 level. However I found Grade 3 pieces difficult. When he retired I couldn't get a new teacher so I spent several months at home plodding along, I drifted into ear playing and when I finally got a new teacher he told me to start at Grade 1.

I am now working through some Grade 1 pieces from Trinity and LCM and they are great. Not only am I finding them easier to play but my reading ability has improved so much. Furthermore, I have developed the ability to play with my eyes trained on the manuscript which is an absolute delight-that is the key to better playing, believe it or not!

Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112563
07/19/08 06:56 AM
07/19/08 06:56 AM
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 1
London
Michael Skidmore Offline
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Posts: 1
London
I'm having the exact same trouble but I know that it's just because I'm setting my expectations too high, for now that is.

I don't have any song books so I mainly just play what stuff I find online, or at least attempt to play, which means I don't really have a big selection to choose from anyway. Also, I can't really determine the level of the songs I'm trying to play at the moment, so I just assume I'm not yet skilled enough to play them.

Personally I think that, no matter what level the song is, you will be able to play it as long as you keep trying.

Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112564
07/19/08 09:09 AM
07/19/08 09:09 AM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 684
Ireland
Ragtime Clown Offline
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Posts: 684
Ireland
Michael, believe me - buy the Trinity or LCM Grade 1 books. They are a good starting point and there are some great pieces there to get you started!

Re: Frustrated newbie .......... #1112565
07/19/08 11:14 AM
07/19/08 11:14 AM
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 429
U.S.A
KaylaX Offline OP
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KaylaX  Offline OP
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Posts: 429
U.S.A
HI everyone,

Thanks for posting, I feel better knowing there are others out there flopping around like fishes out of a sea. I guess we have all reached the newbie slump!!!! BUt I feel much better knowing that im not alone. Lets all set our expectations lower and have fun!!!! I think I have forgot what this is all about....FUN,FUN,FUN. I keep forgetting that there is no time limit. There are no college exams set at a certain date. I need to remember to take it slow, and mellow out. BTW Ragtime Clown what is the LCM grade 1 book????? I dont think im familiar with that book, ive never heard of Trinity either but that one I can google.

Hang in there with me guys, AspenX laugh




Yamaha P115 Keyboard
A very old outta tune Baby Grand
A stack of piano music that I cant play !!!
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