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#1816689 - 01/01/12 08:56 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
mom3gram Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/26/08
Posts: 1129
Loc: New Jersey
I can't wait till the Chopin piece.

Glad to see someone making progress again. LOL
_________________________
mom3gram

ALFRED'S ADULT BOOK 1 GRADUATE


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#1817341 - 01/02/12 07:30 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
Doug F Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/04/09
Posts: 186
Loc: Victor, NY
I finished up Pomp and Circumstance at my lesson last week. I actually enjoyed that one. Working on Dark Eyes and the Chopin Etude Op 10 No 3 now. I just about have Dark Eyes passable but am having a tough time with Etude. I really don't like it and I have a hard time getting myself to work on it. My teacher is encouraging me to get through it but it's not going to be pleasant.
_________________________
Doug

I have a great memory, it's just short.



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#1817525 - 01/02/12 11:35 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
Stubbie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/16/10
Posts: 337
Loc: Midwest USA
I think the Etude is one of the tougher pieces in the book to play smoothly and musically, but IMO well worth the effort. I'm at the end of Book II (working on Love's Greeting, Danny Boy, Canon in D) but still don't have the Etude down cold even after months of working on it.

I only wish I could play it like the big kids can.

Freddy Kempf Chopin Etude Op. 10 No. 3
_________________________
Wherever you go, there you are.


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#1817555 - 01/03/12 12:16 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
gahdzila Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/13/11
Posts: 175
I was really rolling my eyes and groaning about having to play the Hokey Pokey. But you know what? THAT'S WHAT IT'S ALL ABOUT! (sorry, I couldn't help myself). It's got a challenging rhythm, but once you've got the rhythm conquered, it really isn't too terribly difficult, I don't think. And it's actually kinda fun to play! The abundance of big chords and the whimsical bass line make it sound more like "real" music than a lot of the Alfred's pieces. I can now play it HT at a moderately slow speed (ignoring dynamics and just banging). I think I might even have it passable by my next lesson.

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#1823477 - 01/12/12 03:38 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
ajarvis445 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/29/08
Posts: 20
Loc: Calgary
I'm working on the pieces in the book that I don't remember from years ago lol. like Pomp and circumstance, theme from symphony number 6, musetta's waltz. Quite a few actually. Although I think I'm going to go out and buy book three and go back and forth between them to build back up the songs I can play. then go through both learning technique that I've forgotten and songs.

Oh and I got my piano tuned today and the dampening Pedal fixed laugh bad news is it will take approximately 10000 or so to fully restore it, but good news is it's worth it smile

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#1824185 - 01/13/12 03:39 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
mom3gram Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/26/08
Posts: 1129
Loc: New Jersey
I'm not totally satisfied with "House of Rising Sun", but I moved on to "Sakura", which is pretty easy, and last night I hacked my way through "Waves of the Danube", which I will now go on to take apart slowly and learn properly. I suspect that this one will be fairly easy too with a little work. Next up will be "Rock-a My Soul" - D major scale with lots of 8th notes. I may be in trouble with that one, but no use getting too worried ahead of time. LOL
_________________________
mom3gram

ALFRED'S ADULT BOOK 1 GRADUATE


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#1824298 - 01/13/12 06:16 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
ajarvis445 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/29/08
Posts: 20
Loc: Calgary
today i was trying out La raspa. It was fun. I forgot how much I liked it the last time I did this book smile

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#1824485 - 01/14/12 12:46 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
Stubbie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/16/10
Posts: 337
Loc: Midwest USA
Today I finally jumped into Book 3. smile I'm still far from finished with several pieces in Book 2, but I got antsy and played through the first few pieces. Actually, I went through some of the theory pages (the first couple dozen pages are heavy on theory in Book 3) a week or so ago. I will review them a time or three to reinforce the info.

Book 2: Love's Greeting (Salut d' Amor) is finally coming around. I had a hard time with the left hand fingering for the first measure. Danny Boy: this is flowing better now, but still has a ways to go. Canon in D: I spent some time just practicing the chords at the top of the page and that helped a lot. Canon is longer than most in Book 2, but repetitive in that it works through variations on those chords. Etude Op. 10, No.3 Chopin. Yes, I am still working on that one. blush But it's getting better. I got through the whole thing yesterday without screwing up notes, no stutters, good flow, even some expression. I usually screw up right after I realize that I haven't made any mistakes so far. Sheesh!
_________________________
Wherever you go, there you are.


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#1824494 - 01/14/12 01:08 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
Peace-Piece Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/02/11
Posts: 40
Currently in the middle of La Donna E Mobile. Hopefully clawing my way out of a rough patch of practice. Seems like I've had to practice more to get things to a playable level, I don't if that because the last few pieces are harder or I've generally lost concentration or something. I've also started preparing pieces for the grade 1 exam, most of which I find more interesting than the alfreds.
_________________________
My Alfred Book 1 recordings: http://soundcloud.com/betapi/sets.

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#1824497 - 01/14/12 01:16 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Peace-Piece]
Stubbie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/16/10
Posts: 337
Loc: Midwest USA
La Donna e Mobile is great! I found it fun to play and am still playing it in my "rotation." It was a blast to watch the Pavoratti Youtube of Donna.
Pavoratti sings Donna e Mobile
_________________________
Wherever you go, there you are.


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#1824856 - 01/14/12 02:59 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
gahdzila Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/13/11
Posts: 175
I had to work on Hokey Pokey for another week. My teacher pointed out that the quarter notes in the right hand must be held to their full value, and I was playing them stacatto. It's hard to hold a quarter note with the right hand while the left hand is stacatto! Actually, while playing it, I found that it doesn't make a huge difference on some of them, but a lot of those RH quarter notes really need to be held for their full value for it to sound right. Actually singing the words to myself while playing it made it obvious.

Anywho....all done now, and onward to Night Song.

Für Elise is on hold. In a nutshell, she said I was getting very good and that it would help to put it away and not practice it at all for a couple of months and come back to it. Still working on some Bach and the Gounod Prelude.

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#1826450 - 01/17/12 12:09 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
mom3gram Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/26/08
Posts: 1129
Loc: New Jersey
January has started out well for me. "Sakura" and "Waves of the Danube" were pretty easy and just need a little more practice to sound reasonably polished. And "Rock-a My Soul" wasn't as difficult as it looked, and it turns out that it's actually a lot of fun to play. That's three pieces in a row without any significant problems or frustration. I'm on a roll. LOL
_________________________
mom3gram

ALFRED'S ADULT BOOK 1 GRADUATE


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#1826938 - 01/18/12 06:43 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: mom3gram]
Doug F Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/04/09
Posts: 186
Loc: Victor, NY
That's great progress mom3gram! Keep up the good work.

It frustrates me to no end to run up against a piece or two that take weeks to master but the reward is when you find gems like these that show you are indeed learning something.

I am currently struggling with the Chopin Etude and it seems like it may take me a couple months to get it sounding passable but the very next one, Swinging Sevenths, is already sounding pretty good after just a few days. This happens over and over again. Hard one, easy one, easy one, hard one, hard one, easy one, etc..
_________________________
Doug

I have a great memory, it's just short.



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#1827087 - 01/18/12 11:51 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Doug F]
Stubbie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/16/10
Posts: 337
Loc: Midwest USA
Originally Posted By: Doug F
That's great progress mom3gram! Keep up the good work.

It frustrates me to no end to run up against a piece or two that take weeks to master but the reward is when you find gems like these that show you are indeed learning something.

I am currently struggling with the Chopin Etude and it seems like it may take me a couple months to get it sounding passable but the very next one, Swinging Sevenths, is already sounding pretty good after just a few days. This happens over and over again. Hard one, easy one, easy one, hard one, hard one, easy one, etc..


Don't you know it. smile The Chopin Etude is (note I said, is, present tense) taking me a long time. I am finally at the stage where I can play it with a modicum of expression, but I'm still making stoopid mistakes way more often than I should. I wish now that I had memorized the entire thing. As it is, I need the score for part of it, but not for all of it. Net result is I need to have the score in front of me, every time.

Swinging Sevenths is one I really enjoy. It's easy to play from memory and I often use it to get myself going when I first sit down at the piano.
_________________________
Wherever you go, there you are.


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#1830654 - 01/23/12 10:15 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Stubbie]
starbug Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/15/09
Posts: 235
Loc: Scotland, United Kingdom, Sol,...
I just reached the Chopin Etude.. It's the best piece in the book, in my opinion.. so I look forward to weeks, or months of learning this one laugh

Nice to hear everyone's progress!

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#1831486 - 01/25/12 09:38 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
mom3gram Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/26/08
Posts: 1129
Loc: New Jersey
Moving on to "you're in My Heart", another easy one. I know that I will hit a wall again at some point, but right now I'm enjoying myself.
_________________________
mom3gram

ALFRED'S ADULT BOOK 1 GRADUATE


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#1831702 - 01/25/12 04:38 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
wj3 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/05/08
Posts: 313
Loc: Salem, Or
Gee mom3gram you are really moving now. Keep up the good work! I have been stuck on intro and dance but finally got it passable. Hopefully I will start moving again soon.
_________________________
wj3

2010 Roland KR-115m
Alfreds AIO Level 2:
Working on (Simply Joplin) Solace, Peacherine Rag, A Breeze from Alabama:, (Burgmuller) Progres, Limpid stream.




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#1832127 - 01/26/12 07:56 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
mom3gram Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/26/08
Posts: 1129
Loc: New Jersey
I got stuck on "Intro and Dance" for a while too. Either I've gotten a lot better all of a sudden, or the pieces I'm on now are easier than most of the previous ones. LOL

I love Joplin. And I love "Bethena". How hard is the "Simply Joplin" book?
_________________________
mom3gram

ALFRED'S ADULT BOOK 1 GRADUATE


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#1832189 - 01/26/12 09:52 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
wj3 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/05/08
Posts: 313
Loc: Salem, Or
The songs in the Simply Joplin book are a lot easier than the originals but are still pretty challenging for me. The songs are arranged by Mary Sallee. The book contains all of my favorites "Bethena", "Solace", "The Entertainer", "Maple Leaf", "Easy Winners" and more. Once I get some of these under my fingers I will try the original scores. So many songs to learn so little time. frown


Edited by wj3 (01/26/12 09:57 AM)
_________________________
wj3

2010 Roland KR-115m
Alfreds AIO Level 2:
Working on (Simply Joplin) Solace, Peacherine Rag, A Breeze from Alabama:, (Burgmuller) Progres, Limpid stream.




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#1832288 - 01/26/12 12:28 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
Doug F Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/04/09
Posts: 186
Loc: Victor, NY
Had a good lesson yesterday. My teacher and I mutually agreed to put the Etude aside for now. I was not making much progress on it and was finding it a chore to practice. I will work on it when the mood strikes me with the goal of getting it passable by the time I reach the end of book 2. I don't care much for it but I do think it teaches some important skills so I will keep working on it on my own terms for now.

I played Swinging Sevenths well and was passed on that. I had started working on Theme from The Polovetsian Dances and have made good progress on it in the past few days. We started Burlesq and Arkansas Traveler during my lesson and both seem fairly easy. They are the first to use sixteenth notes. They look challenging at first but once you have the melody in your head they are actually fun to play.

My supplemental piece right now is Can't Help Falling In Love (Elvis Presley) from one of my fake books. I am hoping to be able to play it mistake free for my wife of 31 years on her birthday in March. It has a chord change on almost every melody note but since I have been working on inversions in the Alfred's book it started coming together pretty quick. It was a fun exercise to work out the best inversions to use to keep the hand movements to a minimum and it fit in quite nicely with the Polovetsian Dances which is teaching the same thing. We also talked about starting to fill in some spots in the music where the melody is holding to fill it out a bit more. It applies to both pieces as well and is is very much in line with my goals of playing popular stuff from fake books.

Overall a very productive and enjoyable lesson. Glad I went grin
_________________________
Doug

I have a great memory, it's just short.



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#1832309 - 01/26/12 01:01 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: mom3gram]
Stubbie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/16/10
Posts: 337
Loc: Midwest USA
Originally Posted By: mom3gram
I got stuck on "Intro and Dance" for a while too. Either I've gotten a lot better all of a sudden, or the pieces I'm on now are easier than most of the previous ones. LOL

......


I don't think the pieces get easier as you move through the book (though the difficulty level is erratic throughout the book, IMO); my guess is you're seeing the results of accumulating more technique and experience at the piano, i.e. you're putting the fundamentals you've been learning to use. You learn harder pieces faster. (At least for now--the learning curve is not linear--there will be steep slopes and plateaus all along the way.)
_________________________
Wherever you go, there you are.


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#1840656 - 02/08/12 11:49 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
gahdzila Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/13/11
Posts: 175
UGH.

I've been working on Hava Nagila for two weeks now, and it's just not coming together. I do OK until the 8th note 6ths starting at the bottom of the 3rd page. I really honestly think that I could play it easier by just using fingers 1 and 5 for all of them and just moving my whole arm, but my teacher wants me to finger it as written. I can reach it without any trouble, but changing up 1-3, 1-5, 1-4, 1-3, etc on the same length interval gets me all jumbled up. It's getting frustrating.

On a similar note, the Gounod prelude I'm working on has a similar passage. 8th note 5ths that I'm supposed to finger in various orders of 1-5, 2-5, and 1-4. It slightly more logical in this piece, because it's slow and legato, so you hold one finger while moving the other finger to the next note to make everything connected. Being logical certainly doesn't make it any easier to play, though.

The Bach piece I'm working on now is Polonaise in g Minor, BMV Anh 125. I really wish this piece ended on measure 16 LOL. I just can't get measures 17-20. My teacher instructed me to play just those measures 10 times, then to practice the whole piece a few times. It's maybe getting a little better, but it's definitely slow and arduous.

So I'm having a frustrating time with piano right now. I'm working on three pieces, and in all three of them, I seem to be very slowly and monotonously playing the same 4 or 5 measures over and over and over again and making very little progress. I've been through ruts before, and I know it will eventually get better, but I sure do wish that breakthrough would come soon because it's definitely no fun while you're stuck here like this.

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#1840980 - 02/08/12 11:32 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
Howser Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/10/09
Posts: 43
Loc: Pretoria, South Africa
I think it is time I get back to Book 2.

Have been doing some of Hanon Exercises, any recommendations for books that would compliment Hanon?
_________________________
Howser MD
---------

Started: 17 December 2009
Using : Alfred's All-In-One Level 2
Jazz Exercises, Minuets, Etudes & Pieces for Piano
Alfred Adult "Greatest Hits"
Masterwork Classics 1-2





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#1841506 - 02/09/12 07:33 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: gahdzila]
Michael Steen Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/26/07
Posts: 366
Loc: Sciota, Pennsylvania
gahdzila,
I was going to recommend Hanon before the following poster got to it first.
The pattern you are describing sounds a lot like (but not exactly like) the pattern in #6 Hanon, and a little bit like #7 Hanon.
This finger confusion may simply be the result of not enough hammering at basic technique.
Of course, I'm a great one to talk--I'm still in Alfred's #1. However, I'm a great fan of Hanon, and it may help here.
_________________________
I'm getting there--note by note.

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#1843276 - 02/12/12 01:50 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
tlh1 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/12/12
Posts: 40
Loc: Florida
Hi Everyone,

I am new to this forum, 45 years old, and close to finishing up Alfred's "All in One" Book #2. I must admit that it took me forever to get to this point (started in December of 2008) with sometimes only 10-15 minutes of playing per day but it has always been fun. I also never had a teacher since I feel that I don't have enough time to justify the overhead of driving back and forth etc.

Two questions that are on mind: (i) have I developed obvious bad piano habits? and (ii) should I continue with Book#3 or try some simple Bach or perhaps some simple sonatinas or perhaps mix it up? The silly goal of finishing up books 1 and 2 has been a good "external" motivator for me, so I'm leaning towards book#3.

If it's not too much trouble, it would be great if someone could comment on a short video that I've recorded today (Love's Greetings):

youtube

I apologize in advance for the very poor quality (video and music smile ). I also played it a bit on the safe/slow side to avoid going through several recording cycles. Any comments, suggestions, and criticism are greatly appreciated.

Many thanks,

Oliver

PS: I hope this is the right forum thread.
_________________________
Oliver

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#1843576 - 02/13/12 12:50 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
Stubbie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/16/10
Posts: 337
Loc: Midwest USA
Oliver, welcome to the forum and the AIO Book 2 thread.

It's hard (read: impossible) to know whether you've developed bad habits based on videos or descriptions. I, for one, would not be qualified to make those kinds of calls even if I were standing behind you while you played, lol. I did find your video of "Love's Greetings" to be quite nice. Someone said it's not so hard to get the notes right on this one, but the 'musicality' is another story.

I chose the blended option: I'm working in Book 3 but playing some pieces of a similar level from other sources. I, too, find progressing through the books a motivator. However, I'm also feeling just confident enough to decide to skip the "Just for Fun" type of pieces to concentrate more on ones I might like to have in my repertoire.
_________________________
Wherever you go, there you are.


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#1843935 - 02/13/12 04:05 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: Mark...]
findingnemo2010 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/17/09
Posts: 1491
You have developed from staying inside the "box" with the alfred books. you need to branch out or get a teacher and get out of that 5 finger chord stuck position they stay in. Don't keep all your eggs in one basket grin
_________________________
music to me is kind of like putting together pieces of a puzzle
i call it the paino because its where i put all my pain

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#1844321 - 02/14/12 08:07 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: findingnemo2010]
tlh1 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/12/12
Posts: 40
Loc: Florida
Thanks, Stubbie and joeb84. I'd already read here earlier (and also believe it based on my own experience) that Alfred somewhat under-trains the left hand. The left hand seems to play the same three chord types 90% of the time. And yes, my left hand in the video really looks a bit locked-in to these chords but isn't that okay if the piece contains them nearly exclusively? What else should I do with the hand?

Your advice to mix it up by skipping the "just-for-fun" parts makes sense to me. I have a sonatina book with CD (also from Alfred) that looks quite nice and "age-appropriate" or isn't it?

BTW for me "Love's Greeting" wasn't that easy but rather at a medium-level of difficulty (for book#2). Perhaps it's the key and/or the practice interruptions I had around Xmas. Anyway, I like it.
_________________________
Oliver

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#1844359 - 02/14/12 09:07 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: tlh1]
findingnemo2010 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/17/09
Posts: 1491
Originally Posted By: tlh1
Thanks, Stubbie and joeb84. I'd already read here earlier (and also believe it based on my own experience) that Alfred somewhat under-trains the left hand. The left hand seems to play the same three chord types 90% of the time. And yes, my left hand in the video really looks a bit locked-in to these chords but isn't that okay if the piece contains them nearly exclusively? What else should I do with the hand?

Your advice to mix it up by skipping the "just-for-fun" parts makes sense to me. I have a sonatina book with CD (also from Alfred) that looks quite nice and "age-appropriate" or isn't it?

BTW for me "Love's Greeting" wasn't that easy but rather at a medium-level of difficulty (for book#2). Perhaps it's the key and/or the practice interruptions I had around Xmas. Anyway, I like it.


Playing classical and baroque is the only way to train your left hand to move more in counterpoint and such in my opinion.
_________________________
music to me is kind of like putting together pieces of a puzzle
i call it the paino because its where i put all my pain

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#1846465 - 02/16/12 11:08 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and All in One Adult Piano Course Book #2 [Re: findingnemo2010]
Wish4 Thing Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/29/11
Posts: 137
Loc: TX, USA
I just started reading the level 1 thread from the very begining. Interestingly, there was one post mentioning level 2 book is easier than level 1... I'd like to hear your experience... Thanks!
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self-taught, thus self-struggling a lotcrazy (My Recordings)

Unit 11 of Faber's Accelerated Lesson Book 2

Collections from Piano World for Adult Beginners

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