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#2302750 - 07/15/14 08:06 PM One year Piano-versery!
ajames Offline

Gold Supporter until July 24 2015


Registered: 08/25/13
Posts: 260
Loc: Austin, Texas
One year ago exactly today, I plugged in my Casio PX-150 and opened my Alfred's Adult Volume 1 to the first page. What a journey since then! Some ups, some downs, lots of sideways...

I've actually played every single day since I started- habit is a very powerful thing. Highly under-rated I would say. After 5 months, I started working with a teacher, which has been a huge help. After 6 months, I bought a older baby grand (since I had the room and it didn't cost any more than a good upright). I still have the Casio for when I have house guests (yep, headphones).

I think my biggest problem so far, and I think this is true for almost every adult beginner, is expectations. It's so easy to get down on yourself when you realize how beginner-ish you still sound-- even after all that work! For me, that has been the biggest battle. I have tried to straddle the border between full-on delusional: "Wow I sound great!", and realistic: "OMG, how many years is this going to take...". If you go too far delusional, you don't make any progress, but the other side is too negative, and you might quit in frustration.

Anyway, that is my experience on my one-year birthday... I hope there are more!

p.s. Thanks to Earlofmar for the piano birthday idea- I think it should be a ABF tradition whenever anyone hits one (if you keep track of such things.)

p.p.s. Thanks in general to ABF and all the stuff I learned here. Great, helpful, positive community!
_________________________

LX, XXXVIII-6-XXXIII

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#2302752 - 07/15/14 08:10 PM Re: One year Piano-versery! [Re: ajames]
Plowboy Offline

2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 2724
Loc: SoCal
Happy anniversary!

If you want to speed up the process, hire a teacher. You'll really learn to be musical.
_________________________
Gary
Essex EUP-111 at the mountains
W. Hoffmann T-122 at the beach

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#2302759 - 07/15/14 08:37 PM Re: One year Piano-versery! [Re: ajames]
EM Deeka Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/08/13
Posts: 384
Originally Posted By: ajames

...
After 5 months, I started working with a teacher, which has been a huge help.
...

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#2302761 - 07/15/14 08:43 PM Re: One year Piano-versery! [Re: ajames]
earlofmar Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/21/13
Posts: 2677
Loc: Australia
Congratulation ajames, just getting to your first year anniversary is an achievement in of itself. I can so relate to your comments, the end of the first year is bittersweet, you can see and take pride in how far you have come but also see the road ahead is long indeed. But for now bask in the glory of your first year anniversary, may there be many more.
_________________________
If this life is a simulation can I not be in the easy version where Bach was a drummer

XL, XXXVIII-9-XXX

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#2302781 - 07/15/14 09:38 PM Re: One year Piano-versery! [Re: ajames]
Alex MacPhee Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/13/14
Posts: 195
Loc: United Kingdom
Originally Posted By: ajames
After 5 months, I started working with a teacher, which has been a huge help.


Your progression mirrors my own experience very closely. I also started on my own, and struggled for over a year before I realised I needed a teacher as I was bound to be practising mistakes without knowing it. That changed everything. It's hard to overstate the value of a good teacher.

Quote:
I think my biggest problem so far, and I think this is true for almost every adult beginner, is expectations. It's so easy to get down on yourself when you realize how beginner-ish you still sound-- even after all that work!


I have also had the same experiences, and the same frustrations about progress, and it was here that I benefitted unexpectedly from a teacher, for she made me realise that much of what I was trying to do really was hard, and that I should stop being hard on myself when I let frustration take over when I encountered some difficulty or other. Yet simultaneously, she'd set me things to do that were so challenging I almost took fright ; however, her assurance that it was within my capacity, and her guidance, made it work, and I've been able to tackle pieces that would otherwise have scared me off. Managing expectations, yet stretching them, is a great teacher skill. I could never have gained that experience from book learning.

Quote:
I have tried to straddle the border between full-on delusional: "Wow I sound great!", and realistic: "OMG, how many years is this going to take...".


One thing I have learned, is that for me anyway, there's no end-point, that no matter how far I go, there will always be farther ahead still. Rather than see that as a frustration, I now see it as a significant reason why I do this at all.

My first 'pianoversary' has passed now, and I wished I'd known about the concept, for I'd have had a cake! Still, I have been keeping a diary, recording all the steps and stumbles and new things learned, and my only wistful regret is that I didn't start it fifty years earlier.

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#2302787 - 07/15/14 09:43 PM Re: One year Piano-versery! [Re: Alex MacPhee]
earlofmar Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/21/13
Posts: 2677
Loc: Australia
Originally Posted By: Purkoy
and my only wistful regret is that I didn't start it fifty years earlier.



that's a lot of cake or as was my preference for birthdays......a bucket of trifle.
_________________________
If this life is a simulation can I not be in the easy version where Bach was a drummer

XL, XXXVIII-9-XXX

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#2302834 - 07/15/14 11:30 PM Re: One year Piano-versery! [Re: ajames]
Whizbang Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/27/12
Posts: 1311
Originally Posted By: ajames
One year ago exactly today, I plugged in my Casio PX-150 and opened my Alfred's Adult Volume 1 to the first page. What a journey since then! Some ups, some downs, lots of sideways...


Congrats!
_________________________
Whizbang
amateur ragtime pianist
https://www.youtube.com/user/Aeschala

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#2302903 - 07/16/14 06:32 AM Re: One year Piano-versery! [Re: ajames]
Rerun Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 1011
Loc: Louisiana

Congrats AJ ... if you really, really want to speed up the process, also start learning what it takes to play by ear.
_________________________
Rerun

"Seat of the pants piano player" DMD







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#2302955 - 07/16/14 09:15 AM Re: One year Piano-versery! [Re: ajames]
JimF Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/08/09
Posts: 2198
Loc: south florida
Congrats, ajames! Keep at it... you are on the right path.



Edited by JimF (07/16/14 09:16 AM)
_________________________
Invention No.13 Aminor-Bach
Consolation no.3-Liszt
Reverie-Debussy
My Foolish Heart-Young

Estonia L190 #7284


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#2302969 - 07/16/14 10:18 AM Re: One year Piano-versary! [Re: Alex MacPhee]
ajames Offline

Gold Supporter until July 24 2015


Registered: 08/25/13
Posts: 260
Loc: Austin, Texas
Thanks everybody, I think it's a nice milestone, and I like reasons to celebrate a little grin

Originally Posted By: Purkoy


Originally Posted By: ajames
I have tried to straddle the border between full-on delusional: "Wow I sound great!", and realistic: "OMG, how many years is this going to take...".


One thing I have learned, is that for me anyway, there's no end-point, that no matter how far I go, there will always be farther ahead still. Rather than see that as a frustration, I now see it as a significant reason why I do this at all.

My first 'pianoversary' has passed now, and I wished I'd known about the concept, for I'd have had a cake! Still, I have been keeping a diary, recording all the steps and stumbles and new things learned, and my only wistful regret is that I didn't start it fifty years earlier.


Purkoy, I think that's the best approach, not worrying so much about destination and just enjoying the journey. That doesn't mean you're safe from negativity due to overly high expectations, though. In my experience, the happier you are with your progress, the more the expectations creep up and up. And then, before you know it, you're unhappy and frustrated with your progress. cry

You can do a two-year anniversary, or even 1.5 year, or whatever.
_________________________

LX, XXXVIII-6-XXXIII

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