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Page 195 of 195 < 1 2 ... 193 194 195
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#2305561 - 07/22/14 06:54 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
karmanathan Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/22/14
Posts: 4
Loc: New York Metro
I am on Alpine Melody - 69 in Alfred's All in One Book. Got a keyboard for Christmas and started with Piano Sessions Online. Great software, but not really for beginners who never touched a piano. It really jumps ahead to playing complex songs and doesn't teach fundamentals. It may be good to learn the popular stuff once I learn the basics. It has fun tests and stats, but nothing like human lessons. I started lessons in May at a school where she teaches full time. So far I am amazed I can play anything. She has focused less on my timing and rhythm and just letting me learn reading and fingering so I feel like I am progressing but kinda clunking along and the songs don't really sound great. She is one of these old school teachers where I feel like she may pull out the ruler and smack my fingers some times !!

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#2305677 - 07/22/14 11:21 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
TX-Bluebonnet Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/15/14
Posts: 105
Loc: Central Texas
EnGee: Sounds like you're doing well with your multi-method approach. I"ve stopped my forward progress while I continue to work on some of the more basic stuff. I also still need to do the F A C E etc sometimes. And if I haven't played a chord in a while I have to stop to figure out which one it is. I was thinking about buying flashcards, but maybe instead I can find a game or program online to help with memorizing notes and chords.

karmanathan: Hi there! We're at the same place, except as I was just saying above, I'm stopped for now. I started out with Piano Marvel before I found this thread and switched over to Alfreds. I did have a teacher for a few lessons. It didn't work out, but I did like her approach of learning all aspects of each song. Have you tried asking your teacher what you can do to make the songs sound better? If you have any concerns about your teacher's methods you may want to start a post about it in the teacher's forum and see if you can get some feedback about it.

Me: Speaking of teachers... I think I may have found one. I have a lesson scheduled for this Thursday. yippie I tried out the 2 simpler Hanon exercises tonight. Not very exciting stuff, but I feel like I gave my fingers quite a workout walking up and down the keyboard.
_________________________
Linda

Started my piano journey June 2014 at age 54.
My digital piano: Casio Privia PX-850.
Working on "Alfred's Adult All-In-One Course" Book 1

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#2305694 - 07/23/14 12:51 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
AndrewJCW Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/10/14
Posts: 25
Loc: Middle of nowhere, Australia
That's great, good luck with your lesson. I would like a teacher but I'm not sure I can afford one right now.

I played a bit yesterday with a lot of focus on keeping relaxed and shaking out the tension every minute or so and it felt a lot better.
_________________________
Beginner working through Alfred's Book One My youtube channel

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#2305718 - 07/23/14 01:38 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: TX-Bluebonnet]
rpw Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 04/04/14
Posts: 48
Originally Posted By: TX-Bluebonnet
I also still need to do the F A C E etc sometimes. And if I haven't played a chord in a while I have to stop to figure out which one it is. I was thinking about buying flashcards, but maybe instead I can find a game or program online to help with memorizing notes and chords.


I tried various programs to speed up learning the notes and they worked, but weren't notably effective. I got much better results from doing one of the drills from the Super Sight Reading Secretes book:

Originally Posted By: Super Sight Reading Sisters

  • Observe only the pitch and fingering information in the piece.
  • We will not attempt to play in time here. (In fact, this will be impossible!)
  • TALK! - Verbalize every single pitch and finger that you see and play, one by one. Do this before (not during) each key stroke. (Speaking before playing promotes thinking before doing, a desired technique for what's going to come!) Say "G-5, F-2, E-1," etc.
  • Say any vertically aligned notes (letter and finger number) from lowest to highest. Then play together.
  • Hold each note until the next note is played.
  • This drill forces you to become conscious of every single pitch. It is even more painfully dull than the Rhythm Alone drill. Again, don't do this one more than two minutes a day. But do it every day until it becomes easy.



I did the note verbalization, but not the fingering. Not sure it's really necessary. And I didn't restrict myself to 2 minutes, maybe 5-10.

As for chords, surprisingly I haven't found any program that would ask you tell which exactly chord is displayed. Most only ask if it's major or minor, some may require to specify inversion, but not the name like C major or A minor.

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#2305750 - 07/23/14 03:59 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
EnGee Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/28/14
Posts: 26
Loc: Auckland, NZ
Glad for you Linda :-) I wish I could afford to have a teacher me too. I believe it is very important to have a teacher especially the first year (or two). I wish you a good one this time (without a noisy kid or a hungry tummy!)

I think I'm OK with my dual learning. The first source can show me how correct I have played in percentage. Usually I don't move if I don't get a perfect score. So, I repeat and in doubt I click the percentage which shows me where I did a mistake and what kind of mistake (pitch or rhythm). In Alfred's book, I must be the judge, but with the aid of the notation software I can judge myself easier.

The two mini programs (or games) I have in my android phone are "Note Trainer" and "Score Master lite". They are free but with ads I think. Anyway, I bought them both so I play them for 5 mins and exercise the notes (in my case it helps a lot). I just can imagine that for iphone there are even more of such programs. Those are only for notes, like rpw, I couldn't find something for chords.

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#2306174 - 07/23/14 09:06 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: AndrewJCW]
karmanathan Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/22/14
Posts: 4
Loc: New York Metro
@Andrew - I really enjoy your videos. It's really helping me see how they should be played (speed, etc). The Alfred's CD I have, play other instruments playing the songs in addition to the piano so it's really hard to hear how the piano notes should sound.


Edited by karmanathan (07/23/14 09:07 PM)

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#2306236 - 07/23/14 11:55 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
TX-Bluebonnet Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/15/14
Posts: 105
Loc: Central Texas
Andrew: Glad you're keeping relaxed and feeling better. What you're doing sounds like a good way to go about it.

rpw: Thanks for those drill instructions! I'm going to give that a try. When you say you didn't do the fingering, do you mean you didn't touch the keys, or that instead of saying, "G-5, F-2, E-1," etc., you just said "G, F, E," etc."

EnGee: Thanks, I downloaded "Note Trainer" and did some note practice and playing. I like it! I couldn't find "Score Master Lite," though. Is it available for the kindle?

karmanathan: I don't have the CD, but I believe I read that it's recorded on 2 tracks, so you can turn the volume off one or the other speaker in order to hear just the track playing piano playing. See if that works for you.

My update: I feel like I got some good practice in today, with the focus on relaxing my wrist. My chords are starting to sound better, except for D7. I cannot figure out how to press fingers 4 & 5 down at the same time. Grrr!

As for my potential new piano teacher, well, it ended before it even began. He sent a text message today asking to reschedule tomorrow's lesson so he could go to a friend's birthday party. I think that pretty much says it all.

It's not like I can afford a teacher anyway without going into debt. But I'm struggling with some of this basic stuff and could really use some one-on-one help. I am not giving up, though! So, I shall carry on with self-teaching the best I can, for now at least. So, here I go... moving on to the C position.
_________________________
Linda

Started my piano journey June 2014 at age 54.
My digital piano: Casio Privia PX-850.
Working on "Alfred's Adult All-In-One Course" Book 1

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#2306253 - Yesterday at 01:09 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: TX-Bluebonnet]
rpw Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 04/04/14
Posts: 48
Originally Posted By: TX-Bluebonnet
rpw: Thanks for those drill instructions! I'm going to give that a try. When you say you didn't do the fingering, do you mean you didn't touch the keys, or that instead of saying, "G-5, F-2, E-1," etc., you just said "G, F, E," etc."


The later. I don't see a point in verbalizing finger numbers, unless that's what you want to learn.

Originally Posted By: TX-Bluebonnet

My update: I feel like I got some good practice in today, with the focus on relaxing my wrist. My chords are starting to sound better, except for D7. I cannot figure out how to press fingers 4 & 5 down at the same time. Grrr!


When I got to the D7 chord, I thought there was a mistake in the book. Why would one use 4th and 5th fingers if 3 and 4 feel so much easier? I don't know. Anyway, I don't have any useful advice, I think I just got used to it after some practice. Maybe someone from the teachers forum can help.

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#2306300 - Yesterday at 05:26 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
AndrewJCW Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/10/14
Posts: 25
Loc: Middle of nowhere, Australia
www.musictheory.net is a nice free website with some good music theory stuff on it. I use it a bit to practice reading the bass cleff.

Glad my videos can help karmanathan. If you type the song name and "Alfred's" into youtube it'll usually come back with 10+ similar videos that you can watch. It's fun watching some and seeing how people can play the same piece so differently. I think there's one or two good players or teachers that have done examples as well that are good to look at.

Bluebonnet - Good luck with your 4 + 5 fingers! From what I can recall they share some physiological structures (like tendons or something) that are independent in the other fingers, so it can be very difficult to get them to do stuff that's easy for your first 2 fingers. I might have a slight advantage here because guitarists go through a similar thing, so perhaps mine a little more well trained than the average beginner's.

I think the fingering in the book is a pretty rough guideline, however it definitely wants you to use your 4/5 fingers for precisely the reason that they are weak! The songs we play are simple enough you could usually play them with 2-3 fingers on each hand, and beginners have a tendency to play this way, but this will leave you in a bad spot when you move onto tougher stuff and your 4/5 fingers are still very untrained.

I recorded another song today after a bit of a break, and it feels good to (semi) officially be progressing again. I've spent a fair bit of time on the next 5 songs or so but if I can get them on video I really feel like I'm ready to move on.

_________________________
Beginner working through Alfred's Book One My youtube channel

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#2306341 - Yesterday at 08:34 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
fizikisto Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 283
Loc: Hernando, MS
rpw,
Fingering indications in sheet music are just suggestions. Not everyone has the same hands, and if you find a different fingering that is more comfortable for you, take a pencil and change it on the score. Also, the suggested fingering for the same notes might be completely different in two different pieces of music, or even the same piece of music, depending on the context. That is because it's not only about playing those specific notes, but also being able to smoothly transition to the next notes as well. Sometimes a different fingering will make it easier to move to the next chord, for example.

One caveat. When you start playing in keys other than C-major, be very careful when you decide to change the fingering. If a note is supposed to be sharped or flatted because of the key signature, but you forget to do so, the suggested fingering might seem crazy but only because you're playing the wrong notes. smile

Warm Regards
_________________________
Nord Stage 2 HA88
Yamaha P-250

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#2306352 - Yesterday at 08:52 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
AndrewJCW Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/10/14
Posts: 25
Loc: Middle of nowhere, Australia
I would laugh but just today I realised I have a whole song recorded with me hitting b flat instead of b in one of my videos. I tried to play it the right way but it sounds really wrong to me now. In the end you've gotta go with your own ears!

Just put my new Amazon order in as well.

Beginning Blues Keyboard
Big Book of Beginner's Piano Classics
Complete Jazz Keyboard Method
Adult All-in-one Course: Alfred's Basic Level 2
The Real Book: Sixth Edition

Should be fun!


Edited by AndrewJCW (Yesterday at 07:39 PM)
_________________________
Beginner working through Alfred's Book One My youtube channel

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#2306708 - Yesterday at 08:40 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: AndrewJCW]
karmanathan Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/22/14
Posts: 4
Loc: New York Metro
Are those your lucky piano shorts?

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#2306716 - Yesterday at 09:25 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: TX-Bluebonnet]
EnGee Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/28/14
Posts: 26
Loc: Auckland, NZ
Originally Posted By: TX-Bluebonnet

I downloaded "Note Trainer" and did some note practice and playing. I like it! I couldn't find "Score Master Lite," though. Is it available for the kindle?

I really don't know! I have kindle "reader?" for PC but I don't have kindle device. Score Master Lite is very similar to Note Trainer, so you are not missing that much really.

Quote:

It's not like I can afford a teacher anyway without going into debt. But I'm struggling with some of this basic stuff and could really use some one-on-one help. I am not giving up, though! So, I shall carry on with self-teaching the best I can, for now at least. So, here I go... moving on to the C position.


Sorry to hear about your lessons. I don't have something to say except that I really like eMedia Piano as my teacher! Unfortunately, there is no demo for the program, but you can watch the video below to have an idea about the flow:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZE5M3Wi9StQ

IMO, if you can afford a teacher, that would be the best option because Alfred's book is not enough as the only source for learning.

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#2306757 - Yesterday at 11:37 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
TX-Bluebonnet Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/15/14
Posts: 105
Loc: Central Texas
rpw: Thanks for clarifying, and I'm in agreement with you on that. Seems like saying the finger number would just slow things down and make it more complicated than it needs to be. But other than that, I think this method will be a great way to help improve my sight reading, so I'm going to start using it.

Andrew: My thinking is the same, to stick with the suggested fingerings. I am very slowly getting used to the D7. At least now I can occasionally make it sound as one, so there's hope for me yet.

Nice job with "Little Brown Jug." What are you listening to through the headphones?

Oh, and I'll take a look later at that musictheory website, thanks.

EnGee: Sounds like I'm set with Note Trainer then. I spent some time on it today with the treble staff, and already seeing a big improvement. Next time I use the program I'm going to muster all my will power and select the bass staff instead.

I took a look at eMedia and watched the video. I'm tempted to buy it. But I'm wondering if it'd be confusing because it's not like the two methods would be in sync with each other. Do you find it at all difficult to work on both at the same time? It doesn't sound like you do, but just want to double check.

Me: Practice today included working on chords and memorizing notes on the treble staff. I've started on the C position in the Alfred's book. Just up to "Good Morning to You!" on page 74. And for some fun I also started back in on "You Are my Sunshine" from Alfred's pop song book.

I am sort of thinking about looking for a simple piece to learn for the upcoming recital. Andrew, are you still going to be submitting something? What about the rest of you guys?
_________________________
Linda

Started my piano journey June 2014 at age 54.
My digital piano: Casio Privia PX-850.
Working on "Alfred's Adult All-In-One Course" Book 1

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#2306765 - Yesterday at 11:57 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
MandyD Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/12/14
Posts: 4
Hello I'm a newbie :-) I'm glad I found this thread as I have read through some of the others in the adult beginner forum and most were well over my head! I am working on 2 Alfred L1 books - the basic adult piano course and the one for the later beginner. It's through chance not intention though, I was learning the latter with my piano teacher when I found an old copy on the other book. I'm actually finding it helpful going through both books to re-enforce things and play the same song a bit differently. I am loving all the suggestions (such as the apps which I downloaded to my android phone - thanks very much :-) ) and I have learnt so much already (even if some of it is still over my head!). It is daunting at times trying to learn as it seems like every little step I take shows me just how much further I have to go. It's nice to know there are others in the same boat. :-)

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#2306811 - Today at 04:05 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
AndrewJCW Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/10/14
Posts: 25
Loc: Middle of nowhere, Australia
Welcome MandyD! I know what you mean, sometimes it seems a little bit like this is the only actual Adult Beginners thread in this forum.

Reinforcing is good, sometimes all you really need is a rest and a break for a day to really make progress.

Bluebonnet - My piano is only playing through the headphones, I live in a house with 4 other people so more often than not I'm using headphones. I'm getting the sound by recording straight with my computer, no microphone.

I've been doing about 20 mins or so a day on my recital piece and it's coming along slowly. I doubt it'll be ready in time but you never know, and it's not like the time spent on it is wasted if I don't make this recital. Maybe if it's obvious it's not going to happen with a week to go or so I will pick a relatively easy one from Alfred's or something to submit.

I'd encourage you (and everyone) to try to enter a piece, I feel like even if it's the first song in the Alfred's book the contribution will be appreciated, and recording yourself is great fun and a great learning experience.
_________________________
Beginner working through Alfred's Book One My youtube channel

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