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Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417105 05/04/15 02:04 PM
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Markeimark I also use the Barratt series, it has a fairly steep learning curve compare to say Alfred, I would say, which is more chord driven an kinder in progression (IMO) . All I can add to the great advises above,

Welcome to the emotional roller coaster of learning piano and self teaching laugh.

I know how it feels, I have days like that often, some days I feel better about it than others. It sounds to me for 2 months you have gone through that book rather fast. The last few pages from about 40 onwards IIRC as stated a typical learning curve should be about 2 weeks per piece, it is nothing to worry about and they may take longer.

I am now well into book 2 and some of book 3 I can give a good shot too after 11 months, when I go back to book one pieces I notice the improvements still that can be made and they come more easily.

As Earlofmar once had in his signature,

I thought I understood endurance sport, then I took up the piano

or something along those lines, he's right, I now know smile

Next week you may well a have a day after a practice an feel enlightened again. For sure I constantly have those emotional peaks and troughs all the time, but overall I enjoy it very much.

Giving up or quitting are not words that have entered my mind. Keep plugging away, good luck smile

Last edited by Alexander Borro; 05/04/15 02:07 PM.

Selftaught since June 2014.
Books: Barratt classic piano course bk 1,2,3. Humphries Piano handbook, various...
Kawai CA78, Casio AP450 & software pianos.
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Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417152 05/04/15 04:37 PM
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You see? You are stressed with expression marks and I'm not…because I don't even know what that is. laugh I am more new than you, started at Easter. Fighting here too. smile I use my headphones all the time and I'm not planning to show my piano playing to anybody, so that helps with not being too much in a hurry. smile

Last edited by Albunea; 05/04/15 04:46 PM.
Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417195 05/04/15 08:19 PM
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I switched from violin to piano, although not for the reasons you mention. And I was making great progress.

I am only three months in, but that opened a world of possibilities. The single staff makes no difference, every instrument has its own challenges. Just think of the amount and genres of music available for the piano! You must really love the other instrument to abandon the piano for it, or it will be only a temporary exit strategy. You risk ending up disappointed twice.

Slow down and let the new concepts sink in. I sometimes fantasize about shredding my Alfred's book, then mixing it with soup and eating it. Or sleeping with the book under my pillow. And miraculously waking up with all that knowledge in my head. Alas, osmosis doesn't work here.


Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417198 05/04/15 08:47 PM
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Quote
. . . The single staff makes no difference, every instrument has its own challenges.


YES !!!!

I played flute for many years. One nice thing about a piano:

. . . "You press a button, and a note comes out."

If you want frustration, take up flute, and wait for a day when, no matter what you do, your tone isn't very good --

. . . and I guarantee you, that day will come!

Piano has its technical problems -- but so does every other instrument.

. Charles


. Charles
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PX-350 / microKorg XL+ / Pianoteq / Lounge Lizard / EV ZXA1 speaker
Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417260 05/05/15 01:43 AM
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thanks again for replies , Albunea I am not stressed about expression marks , challenged yes and was feeling a bit overwhelmed I took up piano partly as a way to unwind after work , don't worry about expression marks because even if you omit them the notes still sound nice 8-) things like expression marks were discussed early in my teaching book , just the basic ones.

good to hear someone else is using carols book alexander , I started with Kenneth bakers book but I kinda whizzed through that fairly quickly and needed something to get my teeth into , I am on page 35 and just finished de meyen which was a bigger challenge to me with the new hand positon expresson marks rests on the bass cleff and short phrases , I have just had a go at little sonata on page 36 and was much easier than de meyer , I reckon couple of days for that one as its giving me a little respite lol , the book is good like that , I can see there are harder challenges to come!! not sure if I will have completed book two by 11 months , seems a long way of but well done !

I get what you saying Charles and the things you mention I have thought about having some experience with tenor recorder

and silvia very good point and sound advice that is exactly what I didn't want to happen

Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417273 05/05/15 03:11 AM
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Try looking from another perspective Markiemark...
If all the stuff you still have to learn seems overwhelming, it also means you've got a hobby that's going not going to bore you any time soon!
The more I learn about piano, the more I see I still have to learn. But, for me at least, that's what keeps me playing.

I've noticed how my progress seems to go in peaks and troughs. Some weeks I feel I'm not getting anywhere, and then suddenly I have a breakthrough where it all falls into place.
Just stick with it, and enjoy the journey, not the destination.

Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417283 05/05/15 04:39 AM
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It sounds as if Carol's book is straight forward kind of difficult? I like that. Take every difficulty and enjoy it. Experience it and remember it. Don't worry about how long it takes.
It does sound to me like you're Cocktailing. That is a term I learned from a Coach for physical training. A good comparison. In physical training there is so much to address. So many things to do. It is a difficult thing for him to get people to concentrate on one thing. Get it trained. Then move onto the next. People try to train in different ways all at once (cocktailing). The result is no progress.
You are dealing with physical, neurological, training in playing piano. It is quite sophisticated for the nervous system.
Don't let your mind wander off in Cocktailing. You'll ruin yourself.


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: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
earlofmar #2417323 05/05/15 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by earlofmar
Keep in mind that every new skill you learn today, although seemingly impossible will become second nature in time with just a few minutes of dedicated practice everyday. There comes a point when everyone of us crosses over from thinking about doing something and just doing it automatically.

This point cannot be stressed enough! I go through this constantly, and with practice and time these skills are acquired.

It's almost like adding tools to your toolbox. When you are playing something and need to execute a skill, hopefully you will just do it without thinking. Keep in mind that some skills take a LONG time to acquire; don't be discouraged.

As I have said several times in this forum; acquiring piano skills is like compound interest for money. Each small skill learned doesn't seem like much. But over time, the balance really grows.


Yamaha C2X | Yamaha M500-F
Groucho Marx: "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others."
Curriculum: Faber Developing Artist (Book 3)
Current: German Dance in D Major (Haydn) (OF); Melody (Schumann) (OF)
Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417340 05/05/15 09:31 AM
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Hang in there Mark.

The key is practice everyday if you can, even if it is only 15 minutes.
Also, if you find you are getting particularly frustrated with a certain element, execution, practice session, sometimes it's better to stop for the day, at the very least take a break, get up and walk, take some deep breaths and relax.

I only skimmed thru the replies, but just in case it hasn't been mentioned, I will add, a good teacher goes a LONG way, I know it's not always an option. There are lots of bad techniques a good experienced teacher can correct in the beginning before in becomes muscle memory which will be more difficult to overcome.


Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417346 05/05/15 09:47 AM
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Markiemark I haven't actually completed book 2, working on it but getting there, book 3 I only attempted some of the earlier pieces ( just for the heck of it to try something more difficult/challenging now and again, but actually found some of the earlier pieces okay to have a go at early on in book 3. I find they are not harder, just new keys, compound time etc, but not from a technical point of view to play).

Book 2 is quite short, about half length of book 1, for most of the pieces I found book 2 less of a hurdle than I found book 1 in terms of progressing, but there are a couple here and there in 2 I find rather tough, with some big jumps required. I just need to keep plugging away at them.


Selftaught since June 2014.
Books: Barratt classic piano course bk 1,2,3. Humphries Piano handbook, various...
Kawai CA78, Casio AP450 & software pianos.
[Linked Image] 12x ABF recitals.
My struggles: https://soundcloud.com/alexander-borro
Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417368 05/05/15 11:04 AM
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Markiemark, it helps if you wrap your head around the idea that there is no 'there,' i.e., you never get to the end of your piano journey, then the ups and downs become just part of the experience. Everyone has those ups and downs, everyone. Piano is hard. It's hard, but the rewards are wonderful--there is great music worth playing at every level.

I think it is important to not try to go too fast at the beginning. Make sure you learn the fundamentals right from the start (this is where a teacher can help immensely). Those fundamentals are going to serve you for a long time. They're the learning "how to fish" part of the saying, "Give a person a fish and he eats for a day, teach him how to fish and he eats for a lifetime."

Practice something every day. Twenty minutes here and there works better than a solid hour without a break. Better than committing to a certain amount of time practicing, set a goal for a practice period ("I'm going to play these four measures once hands separately and then twice hands together counting out loud and go as slow as I need to to keep mistakes to a minimum.")

Go back and review old material now and then. The review is useful to consolidate what you've learned and it helps you see the progress you've made. (Warning: if you haven't played a piece on a regular basis, it will quickly fade from memory, but--the saving grace--it will come back quickly.)

Finally, as others have mentioned, it's reasonable to save learning scales and arpeggios until later. Either learn them from a teacher or read around on the forum for discussions on what playing scales should do for you.

Best wishes!


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Yamaha C3X
In summer, the song sings itself. --William Carlos Williams

Re: help !! two months on my journey having a wobble
markiemark #2417537 05/05/15 08:56 PM
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Sounds like a good two months!
Just imagine where you will be in ten years!
(and don't try to be there right this second)
Enjoy!


Heather W. Reichgott, piano

Working on:
Beethoven - Diabelli Variations Op. 120
Beethoven/Liszt - Symphony no. 7
Tommy (whole show)

I love Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and new music
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