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#2055404 - 03/27/13 11:57 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: sinophilia]  
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Mojave Desert
Originally Posted by sinophilia
Originally Posted by hamlet cat

Also, I trust your assessment of the series. smile So, I'm close to purchasing it, maybe 80% sure at this time.


You can also check other people's opinions on this forum, there was a thread about it! I'm finishing the first of the 8 books, it's very quick to go through if you already know a few things, but I learnt some useful patterns.


I found the Piano for All thread and replied in it, so that I don't hijack this thread any further. smile

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#2055405 - 03/28/13 12:04 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Mojave Desert
Forgive me if this question has been asked before in this thread, but since its so long I did not read it all.

I'm wondering what people generally think of Alfred book 2 versus book 1 as far as the ease of progressing through it? I know this might be different for everyone, but is there a somewhat general opinion? Since I'm just starting out, I can only guess, but I imagine it might be easier to get through it than book 1. I'm thinking that because at this point I have developed some technical skills, whereas at the beginning of book 1, everything was new.

#2055516 - 03/28/13 08:07 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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The main theme here is to gripe about the pieces and to notice that the progression of difficulty is not linear. There will be a few easy pieces and then a whoppingly difficult one followed by some easier ones, so that just when you think you've finally got some skills, you get hit with a hard piece.

I don't know how self-learners do it. Without a teacher, I would have given up long ago.


Having power is not nearly as important as what you choose to do with it.
– Roald Dahl

#2055620 - 03/28/13 11:20 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: hamlet cat]  
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Originally Posted by hamlet cat
Forgive me if this question has been asked before in this thread, but since its so long I did not read it all.

I'm wondering what people generally think of Alfred book 2 versus book 1 as far as the ease of progressing through it? I know this might be different for everyone, but is there a somewhat general opinion? Since I'm just starting out, I can only guess, but I imagine it might be easier to get through it than book 1. I'm thinking that because at this point I have developed some technical skills, whereas at the beginning of book 1, everything was new.


When learning anything new, there's a special time in the beginning where one makes huge and rapid progress. The further one progresses, the slower the progress becomes. At least it seems that way to me.

Combine that truism with the fact that I had some music background, which helped me progress even faster in the very beginning stages.

And combine all of this with the fact that as I progress, I am doing more and more supplementary stuff in addition to Alfred's...and thus my practice time on the Alfred's pieces is probably less now than it was.

So, for me, I seemed to fly through the first half of book 1, two pieces a week with no problem. And my progress gradually slowed. Towards the end of book 2, it's taking me two or three weeks or more for each piece.

Malkin is correct that there seem to be two or three easy pieces followed by a much more difficult piece.

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#2055723 - 03/28/13 02:33 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Malkin,
That varying difficulty strikes me as a good pedagogical technique actually. I suspect that if the pieces just got uniformly more difficult as one progressed through the method that people would be more inclined to give up. Sometimes you need a break. Also, if you struggle and struggle with a piece and get through it, and then get the next couple of pieces more more easily, I think it helps one build confidence, maintain motivation and not burn out. Besides that, sometimes the easier pieces can be more musically satisfying (not because they're easy necessarily, but just because the music speaks to you more, or is prettier, or whatever).



Nord Stage 2 HA88
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#2055854 - 03/28/13 07:52 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: fizikisto]  
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I understand the pedagogy but still moan and groan about the difficult pieces.
smile


Having power is not nearly as important as what you choose to do with it.
– Roald Dahl

#2055909 - 03/28/13 10:27 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Well I'm just happy to have graduated to book 2! smile Even if it takes longer to do than book one, it sure is a good feeling to be in it.

And to gahdzila's point about doing more supplemental material, I'm also at the stage where I need to increase other material. The Piano for All course, working more with scales, and perhaps sneaking in some scores that I want to do. It seems that many more doors open at this stage. But I would like to keep Alfred's book 2 as my primary focus. Without setting concrete goals, I'd like to be done this year.

#2055928 - 03/28/13 11:03 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: hamlet cat]  
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Originally Posted by hamlet cat
Forgive me if this question has been asked before in this thread, but since its so long I did not read it all.

I'm wondering what people generally think of Alfred book 2 versus book 1 as far as the ease of progressing through it? I know this might be different for everyone, but is there a somewhat general opinion? Since I'm just starting out, I can only guess, but I imagine it might be easier to get through it than book 1. I'm thinking that because at this point I have developed some technical skills, whereas at the beginning of book 1, everything was new.


Something worth noting--a number of people have commented on a patch of Latin-themed pieces near the beginning of Book 2. The gist of the comments were usually that they were hard. They were for me. ( The general consensus is that La Bamba doesn't translate all that will to the piano. I got it to the point where I could hit the notes, but I never did get it to sound good. frown ) Don't get discouraged if those pieces are a slog for you--you've got lots of company. If you sail through them, hurray!

My two cents of advice (I'm working on various pieces in Book 3) would be to continue a good ways into Book 2 before doing a lot of branching out (unless it's just using an additional method book at roughly the same level). In addition to new keys, things like sixteenth notes, and dotted eighths, diminished and augmented triads get introduced later in the book. These are all very useful--and common--techniques and concepts you'll run into when branching out, so it's good to get some grounding in them first. Again, my two cents.

I actually liked quite a few of the pieces in Book 2, especially in the second half. The songs got more complex and interesting, and I had more bench time under my belt. That added up to making the pieces more enjoyable.


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#2055944 - 03/28/13 11:46 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Thank you for that insight Stubbie.

Hopefully I can get through some of the Latin ones without too much trouble. I don't believe they are too my taste, but one never knows. I know all these songs have valuable lessons, and getting past the songs we don't like so much is kind of like paying our piano development dues. Alfred has enough enjoyable songs to make it interesting. I won't be straying too far from the book.

The other course I picked up is secondary, something that will help give me the ability to break my practice sessions into a greater number of smaller chunks of different material. I've come to believe that spending small amounts of time on many different things, is preferable to spending lots of time on fewer things. This concept was discussed in other threads, and forum members with opinions that I value have mentioned this concept for efficient practice.

#2056157 - 03/29/13 10:56 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: hamlet cat]  
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Originally Posted by hamlet cat
Thank you for that insight Stubbie.

.........The other course I picked up is secondary, something that will help give me the ability to break my practice sessions into a greater number of smaller chunks of different material. I've come to believe that spending small amounts of time on many different things, is preferable to spending lots of time on fewer things. This concept was discussed in other threads, and forum members with opinions that I value have mentioned this concept for efficient practice.


Absolutely, thumbs up to small chunks and focused, disciplined practice--with the Alfred pieces as well.

Oh, and cool cat in your avatar, Hamlet Cat. thumb


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#2059296 - 04/04/13 01:03 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Danny Boy is currently the bane of my existence.

#2059493 - 04/04/13 10:24 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: gahdzila]  
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Yah, this end of the book is kind of the British Isles ghetto, isn't it? Loch Lomond and then Danny Boy not far after. I'm swimming the channel between the two of them right now.


Having power is not nearly as important as what you choose to do with it.
– Roald Dahl

#2059522 - 04/04/13 11:35 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Actually, I don't really mind the tune. Danny Boy just seems rather difficult to me. The first page isn't too bad, but the second page really trips me up. The chord changes in the right hand are giving me fits. Two weeks on this one and they still feel awkward and clumsy. It's coming along, but it's frustrating.

On the positive side, it's the second to last piece in the book, so that's motivating. But I'm moving more towards spring recital prep mode, so Alfred's is taking a back seat to my other pieces.

#2059657 - 04/05/13 08:05 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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What are you playing for your recital?

I'm really enjoying all my music right now. I've been in a little rhythm where I end up with 2 Alfreds each week-one continuing and one new, so it is nice to not be starting everything from scratch. For the recital I'm doing Martha Mier Dandylion Rag and a Bach Musette (from an English Suite). I'm also playing a duet Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho with my husband.

It seems like everything will be ready. Yesterday, I came home from all day at a training with a headache, and achy back and legs from sitting, and generally feeling awful. I played through my ragtime, and while there were plenty of mistakes, it was basically ok so I feel like that's about the worst that could happen, and that's respectable.

My teacher says his other adults might not be playing. I said I'd buy them a bottle of wine if they did play. I think it will be fun.


Having power is not nearly as important as what you choose to do with it.
– Roald Dahl

#2059709 - 04/05/13 09:31 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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I'm working on two different pieces....whichever one sounds the best the week before the recital is the one I'll play LOL. Actually, I'm undecided. I'm working on Chopin's Prelude in e minor, Op. 28 No. 4; and a modern piece by an American composer - Majestic Splendor by Carolyn Settliff. Majestic Splendor is big, loud, regal, and.....well.....it's majestic sounding! And the Chopin prelude is a very quiet dark and emotional piece. Right now, I think I would rather play the prelude, as it's more my style but Majestic Splendor is technically easier for me, so playing it would reduce my chances of screwing up in front of an audience.

That's very cool that you're getting to play three pieces. And a duet with your husband?!? What fun!!! Our music school is so big that there really isn't time for everyone to play more than one piece. The spring recital usually runs close to two hours as is.

Don't sweat being the only adult. I'm always the only adult at my recital, and no one has thrown tomatos at me yet! I think of it like this - I'm not really there to perform before an audience, I'm there to PRACTICE performing in front of people. I get REALLY REALLY nervous and self conscious playing in front of people, so playing the recital is definitely good for me.

Good luck!

#2059752 - 04/05/13 10:36 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Wow you play Chopin's prelude no. 4? I tried no. 7, looked easy until I got to the 5-note chord spanning a 10th! laugh


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#2059765 - 04/05/13 11:05 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: sinophilia]  
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Originally Posted by sinophilia
Wow you play Chopin's prelude no. 4? I tried no. 7, looked easy until I got to the 5-note chord spanning a 9th! laugh


I wouldn't quite say I play it yet. But I do muddle through it. I doubt I could play a 5 note chord spanning a 9th right now, either! No. 4 does have some tricky finger crunchers, some 4 note chords spanning an octave. Now that I've practiced it, I can reach them ok...my biggest issue is moving across the keyboard and getting set up for them and playing them in time. It will come soon enough!

Being a man with large-ish hands, stretching span isn't a problem for me so far. I can span a 10th with pinky and thumb fairly comfortably (and already play a piece that requires it!). Squeezing my big fingers up between two black keys to hit a white key up high without playing all 3 keys - that's a little more difficult for me!

#2061344 - 04/08/13 04:10 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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I am looking for a technical exercise book to order online as an adjunct to Alfred's AIO Level ONE. Has anyone used the "A Dozen A Day" technical exercise books by Edna Mae Burnham when they were doing book 1? If so, did you use the "Preparatory" book and then book "One", were these a good fit?

Last edited by NoteBender; 04/08/13 07:03 PM.

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#2062069 - 04/09/13 05:22 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Still early days, I am up to 'Festive dance', it is my favourit tune so far of either of the Alfred books, it works nicely as a limping march.

#2062115 - 04/09/13 08:00 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Welcome Stephen300o!


Having power is not nearly as important as what you choose to do with it.
– Roald Dahl

#2064867 - 04/15/13 08:59 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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I arrived at Danny Boy! I followed my own advice and listened to a bunch of different versions of the song on youtube. Of course, my favorite is the Muppets!


Having power is not nearly as important as what you choose to do with it.
– Roald Dahl

#2065056 - 04/15/13 03:57 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Danny Boy is still the bane of my existence. Hopefully, my teacher will deem it "done" this week. It's getting close.

#2065160 - 04/15/13 08:14 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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After looking through it, I'm going to start with the bass clef on the second page; I think that's the worst of it. My teacher will be otu of town next week, so I've got 2 weeks to chisel away at it.

What's the worst part of it for you?

(Do take a peek at the muppets; it could cheer you up immensely!)


Having power is not nearly as important as what you choose to do with it.
– Roald Dahl

#2065172 - 04/15/13 08:55 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: malkin]  
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Originally Posted by malkin

What's the worst part of it for you?


The second part. Second page, top three lines - from the repeat sign through the first/second ending. I've got the first page pretty good; and I've got the second ending good (I skipped the first ending).

It's getting better. I think she'll pass me this week.

Originally Posted by malkin
(Do take a peek at the muppets; it could cheer you up immensely!)


I'll check it out later wink

Last edited by gahdzila; 04/15/13 08:56 PM.
#2067173 - 04/19/13 03:06 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Hello everyone

I'm very happy to be joining everyone in book two!

I did start Albert's before and completed book one and 3 or 4 songs in book two.

Then I broke my wrist and quit playing. It's been a couple of years now and I caught the piano bug again.

So I decided to start again at the beginning, in book one.

Well, as of today I have laid book one to rest (for the second time!) and can now join this thread!

#2067232 - 04/19/13 04:52 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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fantastic news just4fun, hope hear much of your news about book 2. Which is proving a slight problem for me as it is pretty hard in places


Problems with piano are 90% psychological, the other 10% is in your head.

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#2067244 - 04/19/13 05:08 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Danny Boy is all done. YAY! Moving on to Pachelbel!

Still working on the Chopin prelude. It sounds pretty good, except for *THOSE TWO NASTY MEASURES*:

[Linked Image]

The left hand jump from the B octave up to the 4 note finger crunchers is still rough and slow. And in the next measure, the left hand jump down to A then up to E-F#-C is a little rough, especially while trying to play a triplet with the right hand. But it's coming along! I hope to have this one polished for our recital next month.

#2067264 - 04/19/13 05:39 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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I have the all in one book 2 but can't find this piece.


Problems with piano are 90% psychological, the other 10% is in your head.

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#2067280 - 04/19/13 06:07 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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The measures I just posted? Sorry for the confusion, that's not in the Alfred's book, it's my recital piece, Chopin's Prelude in E minor, Op 28, No 4.

#2067282 - 04/19/13 06:11 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]  
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Way to go gahdz! I'm just getting in to the thick of Danny Boy. Got any tips? Have fun with the TacoBell!



earlofm, gahdzilla's Chopin piece is not in Alfred book 2.


Having power is not nearly as important as what you choose to do with it.
– Roald Dahl

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