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#2299753 - 07/08/14 06:11 AM Piano Music Theory Books***
ChopinFan66 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/16/12
Posts: 18
Hi all:

I am hoping you can recommend several good books on theory. I am having a hard time understanding the rhythms on various pieces of piano music. I understand some of the basics, but, it is hard to determine the timing. I mean, the left hand notes sometimes appear to line up with certain notes in the right hand, but, one cannot go by mere appearance. It almost seems like one has to do some math to confirm when notes should be played. Quite often, my math does not add up. Dotted eighths, slurs, etc., I need to understand all of this.

Thank you.

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#2299769 - 07/08/14 07:53 AM Re: Piano Music Theory Books*** [Re: ChopinFan66]
fizikisto Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 1187
Loc: Hernando, MS
I can recommend very highly Garwood Whaley's book "Basics in Rhythm" which is fantastic for helping one sort out rhythm issues. It consists of many isolated rhythm exercises for you to clap and count along with. And it comes with two CDs that have all the examples and exercises in the book illustrated. If you work through those exercises, it will really help you get your rhythm issues sorted out.

Also, are you confusing a slur with a tie? The marks look similar but have different functions. A tie indicates that a note is to held down for the additional counts illustrated. A slur indicates that there is a phrase (generally that means you want to play the notes under the slur legato, or in a smooth and connected fashion).

Also, if you're a beginner, you may be trying to do too much too fast. What are you playing that has dotted eighth notes? You may need to focus on more simple music until you get these things down.

And finally, yes sometimes the right hand and left hand are not perfectly in synch. That's why you must count with authority. Make your playing match the rhythm you count, not the other way around. and when you count, emphasize the first beat in the measure (both and when you count, and a little bit when you play) ONE two three four ONE two three four. There are times when you emphasize other beats but that's more advanced. You want to feel that pulse at the beginning of every measure.

Good Luck!
Nord Stage 2 HA88
Roland RD800

#2299807 - 07/08/14 09:50 AM Re: Piano Music Theory Books*** [Re: ChopinFan66]
Ataru074 Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 866
Loc: Houston, TX
if you have an ipad or something like that....
this is for theory
and this is for ear training

cheaper and more interactive than any book
working on:
Beethoven: Op 2#2
Mozart: K511
Debussy: Estampes
Moszkowski: Op 72

#2299880 - 07/08/14 02:09 PM Re: Piano Music Theory Books*** [Re: ChopinFan66]
Michael Martinez Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/22/12
Posts: 516
Loc: California
You're not asking about music theory, you're asking about notation.
Music Educator, Computer Engineer, avid reader of literature, enjoyer of the outdoors

#2299883 - 07/08/14 02:16 PM Re: Piano Music Theory Books*** [Re: Michael Martinez]
keystring Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 12668
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: Michael Martinez
You're not asking about music theory, you're asking about notation.

Notation is part of theory. In fact, every element in the OP's questions related to theory.


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