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34

Get a teacher Try another instrument Try some different styles of music Play with others Make a deadline to perfect a tune Go to an open-mic night Record yourself playing Change the practice regime - 10 mins max Learn something challenging Use the syllabus for an exam - and take it! Don't give up. It may only be a phase


30

Computer: You're using one right now. You don't need a fancy new computer to make music. DAW: There are many free DAWs. REAPer is free if you don't mind a nag screen, Audacity is free and open source. Keyboard/Synth: You can get an entry keyboard for $100 that will work fine. VSTs: There are many free VSTs available from plenty of websites. Samples: Free on ...


28

Wrong reps create wrong results. DO NOT play fast and wrong. Practice as slowly as you need to to avoid wrong notes. This is very important. The reason that you need to practice in the first place is that you need to create muscle memory. If you tell your muscles to do the wrong thing they will remember to do the wrong thing. Every instance of ...


25

A lot of the benefit is in how you practice them. If done mindfully and effectively, playing scales can give you a way to focus your practice on the building blocks that make up most of the music you play. Don't think of scales as a series of notes. Instead, think of them as the foundation pieces that music is built around. Here are some examples of ...


20

It doesn't need to be expensive. Computer: You don't need an expensive system, and chances are that the one you are using right now is more than enough. I have used a 2GB RAM, 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo system for production (including mixing). The more powerful your system is, the bigger your real-time toolbox is: more channels, more effects, more programs, ...


17

This is a question without a single, solve-everything answer. There are a number of different approaches you can take, and different people will have their own preferences. Fake it. This works well in some traditional music, bluegrass, rock, or jazz, where a certain amount of improvisation is expected of a musician. With a song you haven’t played in ...


16

If the only reason you want to learn piano is for ONE song at your wedding, I'd say don't go down that road. A non-sucky wedding song is usually at least intermediate level. Pay someone to do it right. Then learn the piano later if you're up for the amount of time and money that takes. Are you going to be ABLE to practice for several hours a week? Are ...


15

In addition to the other answers, I believe it improves the ability to simplify the music in your mind. Researchers studied the memory of chess experts and found they could recall the positions of almost all the pieces when placed in positions typical of a game, but did no better than amateurs when the pieces were placed randomly. For me, at least, the ...


15

Brass have their overall sweet spot around 2 flats, strings about 2 sharps. That's because their layout is based on some natural notes related by pure intervals. Essentially those you can play while leaving valves or fingerboard alone. In contrast, many woodwinds have a sort of "piano keyboard" with the difficulty being more or less that of working with ...


14

There are several services on the internet which can help you with that. If you have access to a recording of the song If you have access to a recording of the song and a smartphone, Shazam can help you. It’s a service which helps you identify a song by computing a “fingerprint” from the sounds it record. To use the service, you need to download their app ...


13

It sounds like you are trying to cram the piece into your head as semantic knowledge, that is to say a string of facts ("...then comes the G7 chord..."). I do not think most -- or possibly any -- accomplished musicians store whole pieces in semantic memory. They store it in procedural memory, and they store it, above all, as the series of sounds of the ...


13

Leaning basic theory will always help a player regardless of instrument because there are general patterns in music that are prevalent including scales, chords, and progressions. The ability to recognize these common patters will allow you to group songs that utilize these patterns to aid in memorizing songs because instead of remembering a group of notes or ...


13

I've had about five different teachers over my career as an instrumentalist, and they all taught me to play slowly when I was learning a new passage. The objective has always been to play it as slowly as necessary in order to play it smoothly and without error. In doing so, it will naturally become easier to play it faster later. I believe that playing it ...


11

The University of Indiana's School of Music is the largest college music program in the USA. From their web page, Doctoral Degree Programs: The Graduate Division of the Jacobs School of Music offers course work leading to the degree of Doctor of Music in the areas of music literature and performance, composition, and conducting. The Jacobs School of ...


11

I would venture that you're doing it correctly, and that it takes awhile. I was still reaching new levels of mastery over the same basic scales for many years after I began. One thing that accelerated the process, beyond what you described, was practicing the scales in two ways: Imagine "C" is the scale of choice. Imagine its notes C D E F G A B are ...


11

There are many different ways to approach playing bass and depending on what style you are trying to go for it may be all you need to fill the sound. I'll explain a few simple styles and techniques that can spice up a bass line. Octaves Rather simple, but effective. Your still playing only the root note, but changing the octave is a very simple and ...


11

I organise an exam centre for guitar (electric/acoustic/classical) and bass exams. Whilst 80% of candidates are younger than 18 or so, that leaves 20% adults. Most of them come with a bundle of nerves, but I see them for the next, and the next,and so on. Frequently they say "I don't know why I'm doing this", but the main real reason seems to be that they see ...


10

Expensive compared to what? If you looked at learning sax, guitar, piano etc., and bought new, as you appear determined to do, you would shell out a load of money with those.Especially electric guitar, because you would feel you need a decent amp., then effects, et al. When you learned to ride a bike, you hopefully didn't go and buy a $3000 racing road ...


10

I don't see why you wouldn't be able to achieve all of your goals within a year - they are a perfectly reasonable. 1.5hrs of practice a day is a typical average of many college musicians, but I digress. Let me address your questions directly: Is it possible, within my barriers, to achieve my goals? What would a weekday excercise (1.5 hours) look ...


10

Your best bet is to take a few piano lessons. Many piano teachers give their classes at their own place, on their own piano. It may be a fairly expensive option, but I am sure you can find a teacher who will give you a few sneaky lessons and teach you just that one song. But then again, I hope for you that this song isn't anything difficult. :)


10

The previous answer is very cogent. I would add -- as the possessor of such a degree and someone who works turning out students with the same degree -- that few people actually get a "PhD in Music." My own degree is Doctor of Philosophy in Music History and Literature. I work with people who have the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Ethnomusicology, or ...


9

Sounds like you are trying to intellectually and analytically "understand" music. In my opinion, this can be done to some extent. Just like you can intellectually understand language and grammar, and use that understanding to write poems, novels and short stories. However useful it might be, it isn't really necessary to write great stories. What makes a ...


9

You're paying the money, you should, within reason, be asking your teacher to provide pieces that you will enjoy. Give teacher a list of 10 tunes that you feel are within your capabilities, maybe get the dots for them, and present them to teacher, who should be able to find something you can be taught by them.Often, half of any lesson I may give will be ...


9

To learn the basics, piano/keyboard is more or less the easiest instrument out there, because the notes are structured so linearly, and you can play each note on it without needing any technical practice. You press any key, and you hear the note associated with it. Want a higher note? Play one to the right. Want a lower one? Go to the left. Once you can play ...


9

Unlikely, because unless your child has a genetic reason for being unable to distinguish pitches (which you apparently may, if what you say is true), he or she will soon learn to identify the inaccuracies in your singing. For example, there has been some noise about bilingual families and a fear that the non-native parent will "infect" the child with bad ...


9

If you play fast and sloppy and "get in more reps", your sloppiness will tend to accumulate in the same places. There will be stuff you always play wrong in similar ways. And you'll get desensitivized to playing it wrong, to boot. You'll feel that it's ok to make the same mistakes over again and again if you are just making them fast enough. "more reps" ...


9

I actually studied music composition and computer science myself. Great combo! It sounds like what you are really looking for is a formal music composition program, so, first of all, I would say that if this is something that really interests you, and you have the time and the means, you should look into trying to study music through your school, either by ...


9

I've been playing trombone for a while and I think I'm fairly well positioned to answer some of your points: They will often say that the piece we are playing is too hard due to relatively basic rhythms... The effort needed to articulate a distinct note is greater on a larger instrument - this complicates playing complex rhythms, as the end of one note ...


8

Sometimes boredom is a disconnection from a sense of purpose. That is to say, maybe whatever it was that you sought in playing an instrument, you are not finding. Maybe you need to figure out what it was you went into music to do, and let that reorient what you're doing musically. This can be a hard thing to do. A lot of people don't interrogate their ...


8

I was in a similar situation to you when I learned how to play the piano as a kid. My piano teacher was really into classical music and picked literature for me, but I preferred electronic music and contemporary orchestral and piano music. As soon as my lessons with her ended, I quit practicing, and now I can barely read beginner-level pieces. School band ...



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