John, I'm asking you again about "scatter shot"...
Hi Gary. scatter shot = shot gun. Over the years I've run into a few methods which seem to have students playing in different keys in no particular order and without adequate preparation.
That's what I thought. That's an intellectual approach to learning which I do not think works well in the real world. Now that we know what order Bach taught his own Inventions in, apparently he didn't think it was very good either.
I'm fairly certain this could probably be handled well by very bright student.
But just because very intelligent and talented students can handle something does not mean it is the best way to learn, even for them.
I've also run into approaches which keep the student in the keys of F, C, and G, and then, after several years or more, throw them into keys like E, B, A flat, etc., without adequate preparation. Students are not prepared to deal with this sudden change and don't do well.
Total agreement. I teach students almost immediately to play in C minor, but I do this starting out with the accidentals written in, no key, and additional accidentals in measure with reminders above them.
Then I use the same idea, but with the key signature, so that all notes that are flat have reminders above them. The reason this is not complicated is that C minor has only one note that stays flat, Eb, while the A may or may not be flatted at any moment, and the B is as likely to be natural as flat. Students are able to navigate through this very easily.
I would not hesitate to use B minor as well, and it's important that two of Chopin's easiest Preludes are in C minor and B minor.
I don't know how to navigate the gap between simpler keys, so often used in music for students who have only played for a couple years, and the world of Db/C# minor, for example, so often used by composers like Chopin, Liszt, Rachmaninov (and so on). I have not written much in such keys, so I depend on more advanced literature to help bridge that gap.
Methods that try to introduce the more difficult keys (to read in, not to play in) seem to be very hit and miss. After spending for ever in C, F, and G, D minor, B minor and so on all of a sudden they present pieces with four or more sharps and flats, and it just isn't very smooth.
I'd like to be able to name names for you, but it's been years since I last examined methods in any detail, and fear my memory of which are which may be faulty.
I rejected such methods decades ago as simply not in the real world. Getting familiar with harder keys is a real problem. There are so many pieces like "Clair da Goon" that would be mostly easy in C major. The only problem ins Db is reading the notes.
Hope this helps. [/quote]