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#2081258 - 05/12/13 08:43 AM Back again - advice please.
MonkeyMark Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/17/12
Posts: 98
Loc: UK
Morning all.

I'm back trying to learn again.
Due to work, family and some other issues after learning for a few months I've had to take a break for about the last 8 months. Its not that I didn't want to, I just could fit it in and as such became demotivated.

On the bright side, a little time has been freed up so, after getting the old girl re-tuned, I'm back at it again (as is my wife).

Any way, I was using Alfred's all in one and I've gone back to the beginning again as I felt I couldn't remember a single thing.
I'm back to where I was pretty fast, so I hadn't forgot as much as I first thought, but I've noticed something.

When playing I read the music, but I don't really read the notes, its kind of more recognising how any notes up/down I need to be from the last, instead of reading it properly so really I'm just playing the intervals. I still can't look at the music and say which notes are which without having to work it out.

Any recommendations on the best way to move forward with this? Do I need to do something different/extra, or will it come with more time?

Thanks, Mark
_________________________
Ferry & Foster upright

Alfred's self teaching - Book 1
Started Mid September 2012
End Sept - Page 39
End Oct - Page ??

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#2081275 - 05/12/13 09:36 AM Re: Back again - advice please. [Re: MonkeyMark]
Whizbang Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/27/12
Posts: 657
Reading the intervals and direction of the melody and harmony is a GOOD thing.
_________________________
Whizbang
amateur ragtime pianist

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#2081282 - 05/12/13 09:49 AM Re: Back again - advice please. [Re: MonkeyMark]
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3158
People read/play music in a combined variety of ways.

These include: The name of the note, the interval from the last note, the movement on the staff (up or down or static), the pattern picture (chords), the sound of the music itself, muscle memory, the tactile feeling of how the next note feels at your hand, etc.

Not being able to actually read the note names, however, is a restriction. There are two strategies to help.

First, find a simple piece of music, that does not have the note name printed in the note head, or nearby. As you play it, say out loud its name.

This has four learning components: 1. you are reading the note. 2. you are saying its name. 3. you are hearing what it sounds like. 4. you are physically playing it.

A second method is flash cards.

Both work well. Go slow, stay with easy notes until you have absorbed them.
_________________________
Music teacher and piano player.

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#2081319 - 05/12/13 10:50 AM Re: Back again - advice please. [Re: MonkeyMark]
UK Paul UK Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/22/11
Posts: 396
Loc: Berkshire, England
P for progress... intervals is as important as note rwcognition.

Now for the other 3 p,s


Practice, perseverance and popcorn.
_________________________
http://www.youtube.com/user/PaulGPiano

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#2081408 - 05/12/13 02:16 PM Re: Back again - advice please. [Re: MonkeyMark]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 1806
Loc: Rocky Mountains
I understand your worries. I do the same.
My teacher has held me back, at this point, on exercises. She knows I want to do them. Before her going on vacation. She gave me one scale to do. Then looked at me intently and said: That's all! Was like throwing a bone to a hungry dog. She did it to make me happy. She is an extremely good teacher. Extremely experienced. I believe in her. I'll go along.

Imagining myself. I'd like to go through something like Mikrokosmos. I've actually done it a little before this teacher. Go very slowly. First exercise. Name the note, play it, feel where it is, imagine where on the keyboard I'm playing...
I really like rocket88's advise. Falls in line with my thinking on getting it down. I want to recognize this stuff fully. I think you do too.
We can only do this with tons of practice. Drill it into our autonomic mind. I know it takes time. That's what we have to do to get what we want.
_________________________
Ron
Ingrid, my beloved VPC : "Play it Sam....For old times sake...Play it for me...I'll sing it with you...Play me again, Sam."

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#2081447 - 05/12/13 04:16 PM Re: Back again - advice please. [Re: MonkeyMark]
Charles Cohen Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 938
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Quote:

When playing I read the music, but I don't really read the notes, its kind of more recognising how any notes up/down I need to be from the last, instead of reading it properly so really I'm just playing the intervals. I still can't look at the music and say which notes are which without having to work it out.


Reading by:

. . . See the note;

. . . press down the key.

is faster than reading by:

. . . See the note;

. . . name the note;

. . . press down the key.

So, I don't see that you should be doing anything differently than you're doing it now.

You only get _one chance_ to do pure sight-reading -- it's the first time you see the piece. All repetitions after that, are a mix of sight-reading and memory.

If you're going through the same pieces you learned a few months ago, you're working partly by memory.

Yes, you'll eventually have to get

. . . "bottom line, treble staff = E"

into your automatic-response memory. But you don't have to go through that process every time you see a note on the page, while you're playing.

. Charles

PS -- I don't teach. And if your teacher says different than I do, follow him/her.

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#2081466 - 05/12/13 04:52 PM Re: Back again - advice please. [Re: MonkeyMark]
earlofmar Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/21/13
Posts: 1118
Loc: Australia
Originally Posted By: MonkeyMark
Morning all.




When playing I read the music, but I don't really read the notes, its kind of more recognising how any notes up/down I need to be from the last, instead of reading it properly so really I'm just playing the intervals. I still can't look at the music and say which notes are which without having to work it out.

Any recommendations on the best way to move forward with this? Do I need to do something different/extra, or will it come with more time?

Thanks, Mark


I had started the exact same process of reading intervals within the first two or three months of lessons, I asked my teacher and she told me it was a good advancement. However as you are struggling to name the notes you will need to work on this. There are a few phone apps as well as online help for note naming, I bought a little program called Presto Keys which I think is wonderful. But initially I used flash cards - see links below

https://www.box.com/s/7ccq3xuqu9ug1nc0ycgk

https://www.box.com/s/78rpvfhr3my78bihrdxk
_________________________
I thought I understood endurance sport; then I took up piano
XXXIII-4-XXX

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#2081513 - 05/12/13 06:23 PM Re: Back again - advice please. [Re: MonkeyMark]
-Frycek Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/06/05
Posts: 5921
Loc: SC Mountains
I've been playing since I was a child and I sometimes have to think a moment about the name of a note. But I normally don't unless there's multiple leger lines to be worked out. I just play it. That's what you're supposed to do. The spatial eye, hand coordination part of note recognition is much more important than the alphabetical part.
_________________________
Slow down and do it right.

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#2081916 - 05/13/13 01:33 PM Re: Back again - advice please. [Re: MonkeyMark]
MonkeyMark Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/17/12
Posts: 98
Loc: UK
Thanks for the kind words.

Perhaps i'm nit doing quite as bad as I thought.

Ill have a go with flash cards and ive recently got an android phone so I'll see what apps are available.

Time is limited so progress will be slow. But progress is still progress. I guess.
_________________________
Ferry & Foster upright

Alfred's self teaching - Book 1
Started Mid September 2012
End Sept - Page 39
End Oct - Page ??

Top
#2081936 - 05/13/13 02:13 PM Re: Back again - advice please. [Re: MonkeyMark]
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3158
Another thought:

Learn a few easily recognized landmark notes.

These are notes that you always recognize. Middle C is a good example.

Use these as anchors from which to reference other notes via intervals. (The easiest intervals to recognize are "Seconds" and "Thirds").

For example, the line above middle C is a "third" up the keyboard, i.e. three white notes above (In the key of C). It is "E", but you do not necessarily have to know, or immediately recognize it as "E", but rather it is the interval of a third above Middle C.

A lot of people read music like this, especially when the music is further up or down from one's reading comfort zone.
_________________________
Music teacher and piano player.

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