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Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: U3piano] #2855717
06/05/19 10:42 AM
06/05/19 10:42 AM
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U3piano Offline OP
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Thanks for great advice everyone, very helpful!

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Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: U3piano] #2855722
06/05/19 10:52 AM
06/05/19 10:52 AM
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rocket88 Offline
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The Acronym system of reading music, "All Cows Eat Grass" and " Every Good Boy Does Fine" is a trap, a poison pill.

Which is why it has fallen out of favor, except for a few holdouts.

The proper way of reading notation is to recognize notes for what they are, not what they are as a member of a row of letters, which forces you to start at the beginning of the row to get to the letter/note that you want.

For example, using the Acronym system, if you want to play the D on the upper part of the treble clef, you have to "climb" up to it: Every, Good, Boy Does.

It is like learning and recognizing the English alphabet not as individual letters, but rather as a row of letters that always starts at the beginning, not at where the letter actually is.

Thus, if you were to read English the same way, and you wanted to spell or pronounce the word "Dog", your reading would be, "lets see, its A, B, C, aha! "D", then, stariting again, its A, B, C, D, E, F, G all they way up to "O", and so forth. Very slow and clumsy. For music, a major impediment to playing, because it is so slow.

I have taught many many adult re-starters who as young people learned the "All Cows Eat Grass" method, and 100% were slow and faulty readers, stumbling and hesitating as they played.

And, because that was how they first learned to read music (first things learned are usually much more ingrained), they had great difficulty overcoming the inherent limitation of the Acronym system.



Piano teacher.
Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: U3piano] #2855739
06/05/19 11:33 AM
06/05/19 11:33 AM
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I agree, i tried the "every boy does fine" method, and I don't think it's a good way of learning.

I then tried the landmark system, and i think it's better. You just learn the F at the bass clef and G at the treble clef, and all C's first, so you can figure out all notes from these "landmarks", and you don't have to start at the bottom when you need a note at the top.

There are pretty good apps to learn to read sheet music these days, i use them and think it's a good way to learn. But most important i think is not to forget to mix that with actually trying to play piano by reading sheet music.

Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: Tyrone Slothrop] #2855766
06/05/19 01:00 PM
06/05/19 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
Originally Posted by WeakLeftHand
And no, learning to read music “in 15 minutes” is a joke, click bait. I hope people don’t actually believe that kind of thing. Maybe a prodigy but the rest of us? Nah.

Well, I did learn to read music in about 2 days in February 2018, using a iPhone app which gamified the learning (that is just learned to purely read the musical notation - not learned to play on the piano what I read as some consider playing part of "reading," but I am not referring to playing here). If I used the app more that the 60-90 mins each of those days, I guess I might have learned to read music in 2-3 hours, but not 15 mins.

Actually, I never heard about FACE or All Cows Eat Grass until now since none of the apps or books I've used since then mentioned any mnemonics like that. I don't know if that is good that nothing I was using taught any mnemonics, but now that you mention these, unfortunately, I can't "unsee" it! eek


Ok, if you're going to get picky about it, what I meant was learning to read the note on a staff and associating that with a key on the piano (as in, this is the bass clef staff, and this note is a "c", and it corresponds to this key on the piano, and my finger goes and plays that key). For the treble clef notes, all those little steps are "automatic" for me now - my brain no longer requires thinking all those steps one by one. For the bass clef, however, it is a different story because I technically only started playing bass clef when I started playing/lessons in April/May. And while I "could" sit there for 2 days and learn the bass clef notes using an iPhone app, I chose not to. Maybe I should? I dunno. But it's coming along fine and I'm ok with that.

Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: rocket88] #2855768
06/05/19 01:08 PM
06/05/19 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by rocket88
The Acronym system of reading music, "All Cows Eat Grass" and " Every Good Boy Does Fine" is a trap, a poison pill.

Which is why it has fallen out of favor, except for a few holdouts.

The proper way of reading notation is to recognize notes for what they are, not what they are as a member of a row of letters, which forces you to start at the beginning of the row to get to the letter/note that you want.

For example, using the Acronym system, if you want to play the D on the upper part of the treble clef, you have to "climb" up to it: Every, Good, Boy Does.

It is like learning and recognizing the English alphabet not as individual letters, but rather as a row of letters that always starts at the beginning, not at where the letter actually is.

Thus, if you were to read English the same way, and you wanted to spell or pronounce the word "Dog", your reading would be, "lets see, its A, B, C, aha! "D", then, stariting again, its A, B, C, D, E, F, G all they way up to "O", and so forth. Very slow and clumsy. For music, a major impediment to playing, because it is so slow.

I have taught many many adult re-starters who as young people learned the "All Cows Eat Grass" method, and 100% were slow and faulty readers, stumbling and hesitating as they played.

And, because that was how they first learned to read music (first things learned are usually much more ingrained), they had great difficulty overcoming the inherent limitation of the Acronym system.



I don't know if it is a "poison pill" or not, but it obviously worked for me, as my treble clef note reading skills are now "automatic". It was a crutch when I needed it (as a beginner organist in my childhood), but I no longer need it now for treble clef (and I'm still a beginner in piano). I used it when I first learned bass clef and that was like last month. I find I'm not using it much anymore. I believe in "use whatever works". I otherwise have no strong opinions.


Last edited by WeakLeftHand; 06/05/19 01:14 PM.
Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: U3piano] #2855964
06/06/19 06:42 AM
06/06/19 06:42 AM
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India
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Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: U3piano] #2857437
06/11/19 08:14 AM
06/11/19 08:14 AM
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I'll encourage your search for a piano teacher. Yes, it's an investment in the hundreds and thousands over years but to me it is very much worth it. The structure alone is what keep me progressing and really refining what I need to do to reach my own goals. Without this mentoring, I really had a hard time sifting through all the books, videos and methods out there. Consider that every week a teacher will give you very specific feedback about your technique, approaches to learning pieces that work best for you and approaching theory and music in a highly individualized way (with a good teacher of course). Also, you have the chance to be part of community of other students and be able to perform at recitals which itself is so invaluable to me. I recently got involved with Guild auditions which is essentially an exam system which I enjoy participating in. Yet, this isn't for everyone, but again, it's one of the possible outlets only a teacher can mentor you through. Again, if you can afford private lesson go for it,and if you do I'll throw out one more piece of advice. Push yourself every week. Put in the hours and follow the program and you will do great!

Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: spartan928] #2857562
06/11/19 04:08 PM
06/11/19 04:08 PM
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Posts: 373
Cheshire, UK
Cheshire Chris Offline
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Originally Posted by spartan928
Also, you have the chance to be part of community of other students and be able to perform at recitals which itself is so invaluable to me.


I can think of very few things that appeal to me less than the thought of performing at recitals. Fortunately my teacher doesn’t put his pupils through such an ordeal!


Chris

Yamaha P-515, Yamaha Reface CP.
Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: rocket88] #2857633
06/11/19 10:21 PM
06/11/19 10:21 PM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 25,321
New York City
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Originally Posted by rocket88
The Acronym system of reading music, "All Cows Eat Grass" and " Every Good Boy Does Fine" is a trap, a poison pill.

Which is why it has fallen out of favor, except for a few holdouts.

The proper way of reading notation is to recognize notes for what they are, not what they are as a member of a row of letters, which forces you to start at the beginning of the row to get to the letter/note that you want.

For example, using the Acronym system, if you want to play the D on the upper part of the treble clef, you have to "climb" up to it: Every, Good, Boy Does.
Ii think the method you are criticizing is just for the very beginning. After a few weeks one just learns that a note in a certain position on the staff corresponds to a certain key on the piano.

Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: pianoloverus] #2857635
06/11/19 10:41 PM
06/11/19 10:41 PM
Joined: May 2015
Posts: 4,111
Florida
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by rocket88
The Acronym system of reading music, "All Cows Eat Grass" and " Every Good Boy Does Fine" is a trap, a poison pill.

Which is why it has fallen out of favor, except for a few holdouts.

The proper way of reading notation is to recognize notes for what they are, not what they are as a member of a row of letters, which forces you to start at the beginning of the row to get to the letter/note that you want.

For example, using the Acronym system, if you want to play the D on the upper part of the treble clef, you have to "climb" up to it: Every, Good, Boy Does.
Ii think the method you are criticizing is just for the very beginning. After a few weeks one just learns that a note in a certain position on the staff corresponds to a certain key on the piano.


Maybe I was just a slow study as a child student. but I learned by the nemonic system and it haunted me for more years than I want to publicly admit.,,,, yes, it was replaced but with eg,b,d,f thinking of everything in order by starting at the beginning. better not to even start with it as it really is not necessary and has the potential to slow everything down.

Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: dogperson] #2857636
06/11/19 10:51 PM
06/11/19 10:51 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 5,136
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Originally Posted by dogperson
Maybe I was just a slow study as a child student. but I learned by the nemonic system and it haunted me for more years than I want to publicly admit.,,,, yes, it was replaced but with eg,b,d,f thinking of everything in order by starting at the beginning. better not to even start with it as it really is not necessary and has the potential to slow everything down.

Quite awful, but I was happy not knowing any mnemonics. Now in this thread, I've seen a few and now I can't unsee them. I hope I can eventually forget them if I don't consciously think about them. I'm trying hard to not think of them... LOL


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Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: U3piano] #2857642
06/11/19 11:24 PM
06/11/19 11:24 PM
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Posts: 4,111
rocket88 Offline
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by rocket88
The Acronym system of reading music, "All Cows Eat Grass" and " Every Good Boy Does Fine" is a trap, a poison pill.

Which is why it has fallen out of favor, except for a few holdouts.

The proper way of reading notation is to recognize notes for what they are, not what they are as a member of a row of letters, which forces you to start at the beginning of the row to get to the letter/note that you want.

For example, using the Acronym system, if you want to play the D on the upper part of the treble clef, you have to "climb" up to it: Every, Good, Boy Does.


Ii think the method you are criticizing is just for the very beginning. After a few weeks one just learns that a note in a certain position on the staff corresponds to a certain key on the piano.


That has not been my experience. Learning the notes the Acronym way sticks around like a mental tattoo.

This is a very important concept, because the first thing one learns is often a very deep learning, which is why it is so important to make a good first impression when meeting people. That first 5 seconds of the meeting leaves a very deep memory, one that seems to be permanent despite attempts to over-write it.

If this were not true, first impressions would not matter.

An example of first impression strength from students:

When coaching a newish student through a phrase, say that if, despite all efforts, they make a small mistake and play one wrong note on the Right hand, on the first playing of that phrase.

Then, on all subsequent playing of that Right hand phrase they correct it, and play the right hand correctly.

Then they practice the Left hand, and correctly, no mistakes.

Then, when they put their hands together for the first time, 99.99% will revert to the original mistake of the Right hand. The mistake was the first thing learned, and due perhaps to the difficulty of playing it Hands together, the mind reverted to the first thing learned.

I have witnessed this happening literally dozens of times. (which is why I try to get students to go slow enough so they do not make a mistake when first playing thru...slow as in a note every minute if necessary....but that is like trying to herd cats!) laugh

Sure some people can overcome the burden of the Acronym method of learning notes, but, as Dogperson illustrated, the first-learned memory is lurking in the background, a mental scar, so to speak.

And because there are much better ways of learning notes, why even think about learning the Acronym method of notes?

Actually Tyrone quite nicely summed up the power of seeing / learning something (the Acronyms) and how they stick:

Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
Now in this thread, I've seen a few and now I can't unsee them. I hope I can eventually forget them if I don't consciously think about them. I'm trying hard to not think of them... LOL


Piano teacher.
Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: U3piano] #2857644
06/11/19 11:43 PM
06/11/19 11:43 PM
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India
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I was first introduced using mnemonics. However, I don’t need those at all anymore. Notes on both clefs are totally automatic. I just checked using an app. In fact, I had a longer time recalling the mnemonics right now.

Anyone who has started out recently and has been using mnemonics to figure out the notes, please don’t think you have been ruined, lol. Just take some time to memorise the notes. There aren’t all that many. Keep repeating regularly till you gain confidence. Maybe write on a staff paper. I think note recognition apps or flashcards are the recommended method, and should be used. I didn’t even use the apps all that much, though I did some other drills which perhaps helped.

Last edited by Tech-key; 06/11/19 11:50 PM.
Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: Tech-key] #2857693
06/12/19 07:41 AM
06/12/19 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Tech-key
I was first introduced using mnemonics. However, I don’t need those at all anymore. Notes on both clefs are totally automatic. I just checked using an app. In fact, I had a longer time recalling the mnemonics right now.

Anyone who has started out recently and has been using mnemonics to figure out the notes, please don’t think you have been ruined, lol. Just take some time to memorise the notes. There aren’t all that many. Keep repeating regularly till you gain confidence. Maybe write on a staff paper. I think note recognition apps or flashcards are the recommended method, and should be used. I didn’t even use the apps all that much, though I did some other drills which perhaps helped.


I agree. Using mnemonics will NOT ruin a student. It is just one tool for beginners, lol!


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Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: Tech-key] #2857702
06/12/19 08:27 AM
06/12/19 08:27 AM
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Chicago
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Originally Posted by Tech-key
In fact, I had a longer time recalling the mnemonics right now.


Same here. I had to pause for a moment before I remembered which one was for bass and which was for treble. I just don't even think about them any more at all.

Re: Ambition has grown, looking for tips. [Re: U3piano] #2857709
06/12/19 08:47 AM
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Naming notes using A,B,C etc is nothing more than a convenient way of.....naming notes. Just like you'd call your dog "Laddie" or "Lassie" instead of saying "the dog". Especially if you have 88 dogs...... wink

In many other countries, say, France, they'd have no idea what we're taking about. The French use do-re-mi as in 'fixed do' where 'do' (or 'ut') = C, e.g. "Sonate no.1 en la mineur". And in Germany, 'H' is B natural, and 'B' is B flat. Thus, you can play BACH on the piano (whatever your teacher says).

Knowing the letter names of notes on the keyboard is entirely secondary to knowing where the note is on the keyboard when you see it on the staff, when it comes to reading music. No self-respecting musician thinks, "Ah! that's an A" when he sees it on the score before playing A. He associates the position of the note on the staff with the actual key on the piano, with no intermediary step whatsoever, and the association is instant.

And that's the way one should learn to read notes when playing. Naming them is entirely secondary.


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
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