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Hand independence Vs Ear training?
#2791374 12/14/18 06:53 PM
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Is hand independence something that should be tackled after becoming familiar with the layout of the piano? As in first aiming to be able to instinctively reach for the right notes in a key, and getting good a muscular memory.

For someone who is self teaching, I have no idea how to approach hand independence. I often avoid it, because I feel useless when I try it. If I try something remotely fancy in my left hand while playing independently with my right, I find that I cannot 'think' with my right hand while doing this. If I try to, I find myself even getting to most basic of melodies incorrect.

The annoying thing is that a lot of these rhythm patterns are harder to play slower than to play faster! And they certainly sound boring when they're played slowly.

Here's an example of left hand rhythm (at the start of this video) that looks easy, but is bloody hard. I can't even play what's in the video with practice, let alone being able to improvise something. Some of what is going on in the left hand seems impossible. Of course I've no teacher to tell me what the right way to approach learning something like that would be.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHhq3uU5lZ8

Here's another video that seems to keep a pretty consistent left hand rhythm. Completely different to the above video. It's

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVerRlMqY8A

Thank you

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Re: Hand independence Vs Ear training?
Visalia #2791405 12/14/18 08:38 PM
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A great teacher can be your best friend. I wouldn’t want to say self teaching can’t work but there are always options to get help from SOMEONE. A different way to say that is with some inspired guidance and some follow through in the learning process you might your first two questions, although relevant right now, aren’t in the long run the questions you’ll want to ask or answer.

...l find great teaching and if you want to learn you absolutely will!

Re: Hand independence Vs Ear training?
Visalia #2791458 12/15/18 02:09 AM
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Here is a tiny example of how to learn polyrhythmic. However, without a mentor you will lose a lot of time!

[Linked Image]

Re: Hand independence Vs Ear training?
Visalia #2791465 12/15/18 03:28 AM
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Hi Visalia

I spent a lot of time trying to play in a style similar to Elton John's over the years, and you're right what he plays looks easy. This piece uses one of Elton's default left hand styles, with the back beat (2 & 4) emphasised by the use of the octave. You could simplify this a bit by just playing an alternating octave (i.e low Bb to higher Bb).

As I've said in a few other posts the only way I've found that works for me in relation to LH independence is repetition. Practice and perfect the left-hand part on it's own. Only when the left-hand is perfect and you don't have to think about it, then start adding the right hand.

An example of this for me was the boogie-woogie piece "Honky Tonk Train blues". This has a classic dotted 8th note left-hand pattern and at a couple of points in the piece a cross rhythm of 6 over the top. Its very difficult to do unless you have the left-hand part nailed down. I got it eventually but I had to practice the LH part a lot!

I'd also have to say its about feel...... if you can't feel how the music should be, then its going to be very difficult whatever you do.

Thanks for the transcription Nahum.

Cheers


Simon

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Re: Hand independence Vs Ear training?
Simon_b #2791479 12/15/18 05:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Simon_b
Hi Visalia

I spent a lot of time trying to play in a style similar to Elton John's over the years, and you're right what he plays looks easy. This piece uses one of Elton's default left hand styles, with the back beat (2 & 4) emphasised by the use of the octave. You could simplify this a bit by just playing an alternating octave (i.e low Bb to higher Bb).

As I've said in a few other posts the only way I've found that works for me in relation to LH independence is repetition. Practice and perfect the left-hand part on it's own. Only when the left-hand is perfect and you don't have to think about it, then start adding the right hand.

I'd also have to say its about feel...... if you can't feel how the music should be, then its going to be very difficult whatever you do.

Cheers


Another pattern I forgot to mention was the Charleston pattern. It's tricky, but I wouldn't find it anyway bear as difficult as what Elt's doing in that vid.

What's also difficult is to play softly with one hand, and with force with the other. With that left hand pattern of Elton's it hard to play it without hitting the keys with full force.

Re: Hand independence Vs Ear training?
Simon_b #2791484 12/15/18 06:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Simon_b
Hi Visalia
You could simplify this a bit by just playing an alternating octave (i.e low Bb to higher Bb).


It depends. That's very easy alright, but if you want the staccato effect it suddenly becomes a lot harder!!

Re: Hand independence Vs Ear training?
Visalia #2791491 12/15/18 07:18 AM
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I was thinking about this recently. (Disclaimer: I'm a NOOB not an expert) and I searched out videos about hand independence as I struggle with this big time.


From what I see, it comes down to learning a new skill; training your brain to do something that it wouldn't normally want to do. Like any other skill, you practice it to make it happen.

Here are two videos that I'm using and for me, they are helping a lot. The good news is that you can do them without a piano close by.

https://youtu.be/moJa0HuVrkI


and


https://youtu.be/IsR8SkkF0po

Re: Hand independence Vs Ear training?
Visalia #2791519 12/15/18 09:48 AM
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You probably tackle pieces way above your current level. You need to develop hand independence gradually, starting with most simple things and advancing small step by small step. Start with something that doesn't blow your mind right away.

Re: Hand independence Vs Ear training?
Visalia #2816018 02/16/19 12:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Visalia
Is hand independence something that should be tackled after becoming familiar with the layout of the piano? As in first aiming to be able to instinctively reach for the right notes in a key, and getting good a muscular memory.
For someone who is self teaching, I have no idea how to approach hand independence. ... ...


Hi Visalia,

Not sure if you are still here, or even need any help now, but the following video may be useful ref your original 'hand independence' query.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4qPv7wWoQ8

Follow the guy's channel for a refreshing alternative vision on how to play piano.

Good luck.

Re: Hand independence Vs Ear training?
Visalia #2817648 02/19/19 07:38 PM
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You should practice playing as slowly as needed to play it with accurate rhythm. Take it hands apart if needed (I'm sure someone already said this). One nice thing about playing a rhythm really slowly is that you can experiment more easily with different variations. You should try to vary things here and there - right hand or left. It's fun. And it will develop your musicality - vs. looking for sheet music and following it as if it were a law.


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