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Originally Posted by malkin
Originally Posted by Morodiene


- Learning to sightread is one of the most important things for a brand new beginner to learn
- Spend hours on learning music theory before learning to play, or learn theory that's more advanced than your playing ...
- Spending hours practicing each day as a beginner will help you to learn the material faster



I'd group the adult beginner emphasis myths together.
To the ones you already have I'd add: adult beginners should focus on scales; should focus on exercises like Hanon, should use some particular method over all others.

and

Adult students can help (or replace) their teacher with internet research.

Well, the whole video is more geared toward adult beginner students. Certainly there are other myths that are encountered later, but my main concern is addressing the main ones people run into early on.

Good point about focusing on scales and Hanon as well - way too much emphasis is placed on that! I think it's just eagerness to get moving that they try to supplement their lessons instead of just doing their assignment and letting those other things come in due time. That's not bad, I think any (good) teacher would appreciate initiative, and only address it when it's destructive to the student's progress.

Replacing their teacher with internet research? Well, not going to touch that one LOL


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Originally Posted by Ted
Originally Posted by Morodiene

Any others that you've come across or had to learn yourself?


Yes, mostly concerning false prerequisites.

1. Playing classical is essential for developing physical technique.
2. To play jazz it is essential to have a colossal vocabulary of complicated chords and to memorise their names.
3. Scales and other keyboard subsets must be practised in precisely the same traditional way every day.

There are dozens of others.

I guess can't relate to the first two since I'm a classical geek wink , but the 3rd I'm not quite sure what you mean. Can you elaborate?


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Originally Posted by Morodiene
Originally Posted by Ted
Originally Posted by Morodiene

Any others that you've come across or had to learn yourself?


Yes, mostly concerning false prerequisites.

1. Playing classical is essential for developing physical technique.
2. To play jazz it is essential to have a colossal vocabulary of complicated chords and to memorise their names.
3. Scales and other keyboard subsets must be practised in precisely the same traditional way every day.

There are dozens of others.

I guess can't relate to the first two since I'm a classical geek wink , but the 3rd I'm not quite sure what you mean. Can you elaborate?


Just straight up and down is so monotonously restricted in both technique and musical effect; for one thing it doesn't use the fifth finger enough. An infinite number of striking patterns and sequences exists even within a simple scale and once you start mixing up different keys at once the musical sky is the limit. Technique, imagination and musical vocabulary are expanded simultaneously. The usual way does nothing at all for music and inculcates only one particular way of playing one particular aggregate of notes. I know I am eccentric and the traditional way is still insisted upon by most teachers so perhaps it is a personal myth for me, but you did ask for personal experience.

Last edited by Ted; 08/03/19 09:52 PM.

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My first teacher told me never to use the metronome.. it would destroy any hope of developing a sense of rhythm. I have struggled with rhythm and pulse as a result. This maybe is true for kids, but for an over 50 beginner, simply ingrained bad technique. So was this a myth?

My present teacher has to remind me to use the metronome when my rhythm is off, as it was last lesson. I think there is a middle ground between always using the metronome and never using it, something I am struggling with still.

As far as learning withoug a teacher, I think you can learn a lot from books and youtube (I did), but a lot of technique comes from a real teacher and I certainly improved a lot faster when I did find my present teacher.

I am looking foreward to watching your video!

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Originally Posted by Ted
3. Scales and other keyboard subsets must be practised in precisely the same traditional way every day.

+1 thumb this is related to the idea that "real music" has nothing to do with technical exercises. If you're only doing plain-old vanilla scales & arpeggios - I could actually agree. But if you practice them musically, using ideas straight out of your repertoire, what a difference!

In a similar vein - scales and arpeggios must be only practiced "smoothly and evenly". And they must be practiced ad nauseam, forever and ever amen - exactly like that until the end of time.


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My sister and I started lessons at the same time, walked there together, she's 18mths older than me. We only learned for 18 months or so till the teacher died :'( . I was about 7 when I started.

My Mum tells us that I'd get home, put the music on the piano and learn what the teacher had taught us - and fronted up the next week able to play the pieces perfectly - my Mum's story!! My sister skipped some of the practising, got to the lesson and had to "fake" it to an extent. As a result - her sight reading improved in leaps and bounds. Mine was always poor - still is.

That's Mum's story - but I wasn't a good reader of books either - so that may have had something to do with it.


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Originally Posted by Ralphiano
...

Many of us ABFers are self taught, making notable progress, and enjoying the heck out our piano experiences...


I agree...there are those -somewhat limited in number, of course, and with unique and strong motivational capabilities - who simply have a very keen innate ability to teach themselves, and this includes any number of complex and difficult skills such as piano, or golf, or chess, or quilting or cooking or computer programming, or etc. etc. - and to some very high standards (they set themselves) and levels of accomplishment indeed.


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Originally Posted by Handyman

I agree...there are those -somewhat limited in number, of course, and with unique and strong motivational capabilities - who simply have a very keen innate ability to teach themselves, and this includes any number of complex and difficult skills such as piano, or golf, or chess, or quilting or cooking or computer programming, or etc. etc. - and to some very high standards (they set themselves) and levels of accomplishment indeed.


Actually, there are big differences between piano (and possibly golf, though it's just 'a good walk spoiled' wink ) and chess, cooking, programming etc.

Piano is highly technical, and the better you get, the more technical skills you have to master in order to play advanced (classical) pieces.

Whereas chess is mostly all about self-study, and cooking is all about practicing and experimenting and tasting what you cook. I learnt chess entirely from chess books and became junior chess champion a few years later, having played fewer than fifty games against real opponents (and none of them were 'serious' ones either). There are no technical skills to master - just lots of thinking and understanding and strategy and tactics.

Personally, I think too many beginners conflate different things - like playing the guitar or singing or languages etc to playing the piano.


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On Rhythm, I had 2 occasions Adults told me they can't learn because they have no rhythm. My response is that's what you learn. Their response to that is a blank stare and then they go to something else.


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Originally Posted by backto_study_piano
My sister and I started lessons at the same time, walked there together, she's 18mths older than me. We only learned for 18 months or so till the teacher died :'( . I was about 7 when I started.

My Mum tells us that I'd get home, put the music on the piano and learn what the teacher had taught us - and fronted up the next week able to play the pieces perfectly - my Mum's story!! My sister skipped some of the practising, got to the lesson and had to "fake" it to an extent. As a result - her sight reading improved in leaps and bounds. Mine was always poor - still is.



That sort of reminds me of my maths class in the late 70s. I always found it easy, any homework given, I’d do during the lesson.

One evening I went round a mates house, but wasn’t allowed in as he was working on his maths homework.

Following day, he was made to stand up, ridiculed by the teacher, and was told that next time he needs to put more effort into his homework like I had done (teacher actually named me as the example)


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Originally Posted by bennevis
Adults don't need to count beats aloud when learning, because they already have good rhythm.
Do these adults also talk and walk non-rhythmically?

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Originally Posted by Nahum
Originally Posted by bennevis
Adults don't need to count beats aloud when learning, because they already have good rhythm.
Do these adults also talk and walk non-rhythmically?


In fact, some do.

As for me, my heart doesn't even maintain a steady rhythm all the time, and with my broken foot, my gait is pretty uneven, but for the moment talking is ok. I still make all the typical music errors though--rushing, playing through rests, goofing up subdivisions and stuff like that. Maybe I should start blaming it on tachycardia!


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Originally Posted by malkin


As for me, my heart doesn't even maintain a steady rhythm all the time, and with my broken foot, my gait is pretty uneven, but for the moment talking is ok. I still make all the typical music errors though--rushing, playing through rests, goofing up subdivisions and stuff like that. Maybe I should start blaming it on tachycardia!

Just do not worry - everything will be fine ! I also suffer from cardiac arrhythmia for 20 years; and it does not affect the rhythm of performance. I remember once even recorded a compact in a studio in a state of very strong arrhythmia.

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Originally Posted by Morodiene
Originally Posted by Ralphiano
RE: need for teacher

I would be careful with this one. The case can easily be made that the necessity of a teacher is a myth.

Many of us ABFers are self taught, making notable progress, and enjoying the heck out our piano experiences. Careless treatment of this topic could discourage countless future, happy, self-taughts from ever starting.

I don't think it's a question of having a teacher or not, but more what people assume a teacher does that needs debunking. And even "self-teachers" learn from teachers who make method books and videos. It's just a different kind of learning, but that's valid. smile


Yes! A teacher doesn’t just sit there and correct your mistakes. In fact other than at the very very beginning this is really not done much at all. People seem to think if they can read the music and physically play the notes at the right tempo, that negates the need for a teacher.

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There are people who learn how to play-by-ear who have never had a teacher and don't want a teacher and have a wonderful time playing the piano. Same is true for a lot of people who know how to sight-read. Nothing wrong with having a teacher but not everyone needs one or to continue with one. These people may not be the world's best pianists but so what?

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Originally Posted by mimi9
[...] Nothing wrong with having a teacher but not everyone needs one or to continue with one. These people may not be the world's best pianists but so what?


The question may not be "so what?" but rather: "are they as good as they could be?" Realizing their full potential may bring greater, deeper, longer-lasting satisfaction than just happily noodling along.

Regards,


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Originally Posted by BruceD
Realizing their full potential may bring greater, deeper, longer-lasting satisfaction than just happily noodling along.


Or not. I would guess that most people would be much happier noodling. Most people who take piano as kids never play it again as an adult. That's what pushing for full potential has done for most. It's ridiculous IMO.

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Originally Posted by mimi9
Originally Posted by BruceD
Realizing their full potential may bring greater, deeper, longer-lasting satisfaction than just happily noodling along.


Or not. I would guess that most people would be much happier noodling. Most people who take piano as kids never play it again as an adult. That's what pushing for full potential has done for most. It's ridiculous IMO.

Your logic is flawed.

Most kids who only noodle on a keyboard without a teacher will lose interest pretty quickly. (How long does a kid play with a new toy?) They find that pop music doesn't sound good on piano, for instance. And if it's classical they like, they'll hit a brick wall when flawed technique and poor (or non-existent) reading skills catch up with them. That goes for adults too.

Most kids who take proper piano lessons stop playing when they stop lessons (often because they leave home, go to college, get married etc), but many regret it in adult years and wish they didn't stop....and they may return to piano (with or without lessons) as adults. Over the years, I'm encountered many, many people in this category.

But there is a significant number of kids who take piano lessons and had good teachers, and for them, music and the piano remain part of their lives forever. Or they branch out in other ways of music-making, making use of the skills they learnt from their piano lessons like choral singing, conducting/directing etc.

Without decent piano lessons, how will kids ever get the chance to find that out?

(Incidentally, I was one of those kids).


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I have nothing against piano lessons. But there's nothing wrong with people who learn piano on their own either.

My point is that piano lessons as currently taught don't work for most kids and pushing them to reach "their full potential" isn't the answer. And these days there are a lot of parents who want piano lessons because "music makes kids smarter". I would wager that those kids aren't going to be taking piano for very long or have much interest in music because "learning the piano" is just another box to check on their parents's list of how to make sure their child gets ahead.

I took lessons. I wish my teachers had been better. I still play. But if you believe Elissa Milne, it's only around 1% of people who still play as adults. So what's the point? Playing the piano becomes an activity only for an elite group and there is absolutely no reason for that.

https://elissamilne.com/2009/08/31/lessons-for-years-but-i-still-cant-play/

Pop music doesn't sound good on piano? Really?

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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by jazzyprof
Practicing on a digital piano will harm your technique.
I think there's some truth to that statement. Probably not "harm" but limit one's technical progress to some degree if one intends to ever play on an acoustic piano. If that's not the case why would anyone ever bother to pay the considerable extra amount to buy a hybrid piano instead of a digital?


1. They liked the sound better.

2. They _believed_ that "practicing on a digital piano will harm your technique" -- without good evidence that the statement is true -- and also that a "hybrid" piano _wouldn't_ harm their technique. .

3. The salesman wanted to earn a larger commission, and was skillful.

This is going off-topic . . . sorry . . . .

PS -- I'll also be watching for that video . . . <g>


Last edited by Charles Cohen; 08/04/19 07:52 PM.

. Charles
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