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#2336219 - 10/11/14 11:16 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: zrtf90]
Purkoy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/13/14
Posts: 53
Loc: United Kingdom
Originally Posted By: zrtf90
The ottava, 8va, pertains only to the staff it's written for.


Many thanks. I was a little confused because the first 8va is written in bold, but there's an 8va on the last two bars in ordinary type, but with dotted lines for it stretching over the treble staff, and I got a bit confused.

Sorted, thanks!
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#2336426 - 10/11/14 10:53 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: 244
Loc: Central Texas
EnGee, I downloaded the trial version and had some fun trying it out. It takes a lot of concentration for me to distinquish the different notes, so for now at least I'm going to aim for about 5 minutes a day of ear training. Maybe you should consider the same since you had to recently cut back on your practice time. I could be doing better with my exercises. Most of my time is spent working on the pieces in the Alfred's book. I only occasionally do some of the exercises in my Pathways to Artistry or the Dozen a Day books. Yeah, I'm thinking I need to structure my practice time better.

WoodenKeys, Good to hear your teacher provided a time frame. As for the crush, well, you're on your own with that.

MikeOnKey, You're right about it being a long process. Does the love/hate relationship with the piano and the loving/suffering through the Alfred's book have to do with how long it's taking? Or is there something else going on that maybe someone here can help you with?

Mike407, I also go back now and again to review/rework some of those earlier pieces. It's a good feeling to find it's getting easier to play them in a more relaxed and confident manner. I have some easy piano books that I should really make time for. Just not enough hours in the day for everything I want to do!
_________________________
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
XXXV

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#2337500 - 10/14/14 11:56 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
Dennis R in WA Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/13/14
Posts: 3
Loc: Spokane
Hello Everyone. This is my first post on Piano World and this seemed to be the most appropriate thread for me to begin.


So before you read my longwinded introduction below here is my question for you. There seems to be two or three variations of Book 1. One is just the plain book. Another is "All in one", and finally a Book 1 with a DVD. Is there a collected wisdom from this thread for one particular version versus another?


I am 55 years old forced into retirement through a combination of budget cuts and my health. I was diagnosed with mild Parkinson's about 15 years ago which has happily remained at the same level. Close to ten years ago I got a similar diagnosis for tendonitis, which does not flare up too bad as long keep my time on the computer to smallish (one hour or so) stretches at a time. The downside of all this is my hands have become incredibly weak.

About three months ago a physical therapist friend suggested I try to learn the piano. As a life long music fan I began looking into the process. Nearly four weeks ago I found an old electronic keyboard (Yamaha psr 420 with a stand) on Craigslist for $30.00. I found some free lessons on the internet and began practicing. It has been a lot of fun so this week I decided to find a piano teacher.

I just got back from meeting her and she was impressed with my internet only progress. I will be beginning lessons with her in about 2 weeks, maybe a bit sooner if I can acquire the books. She prefers to use the Alfred series with all students older than 12. She also warned me that it will take about a year to get through the first book.

Looking forward to your replies and investigating this forum a bit more thoroughly.

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#2337524 - 10/15/14 02:30 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
fizikisto Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 550
Loc: Hernando, MS
Welcome to the forum Dennis,
Congratulations on finding a good teacher, and getting your piano journey on track. I am not positive, but I think the main difference is that the All in One Alfred's book contains a bit more theory/explanation (thus more suitable for a self learner). Mostly they contain the same pieces, so probably any of them should work with your teacher. You could call and ask your teacher which one she recommends if you're not sure.

As for how long it will take you to get through the first level, that will vary from person to person. The important thing is to just keep moving forward and making progress. Alfred's is a very popular method for a reason, if you master each level you'll build a very strong foundation of piano playing, and learn some nice/fun pieces along the way.

Good Luck!
_________________________
Nord Stage 2 HA88
Roland RD800

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#2337528 - 10/15/14 02:31 AM 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: 244
Loc: Central Texas
Over the past few days I spent some time reworking "Good People." I'm glad I did because it sounds much better now. So I'm really finished with it this time. And today I finished up with "Little Brown Jug." I really enjoyed working on that one, such a perky song. I thought the dynamics were the most challanging part, yet also the most fun trying to get right.

So I'm currently working on just one Alfred's piece, a Mexican hand clapping song called "Chiapanecas." After playing some pieces with my hands 2 and 3 octaves apart it now feels so cramped to be back near middle C position. When my hands are closer together I feel more tense, with higher shoulders and elbows stuck to my side. Blah. For a short while I thought I was actually starting to loosen up, but I think maybe it was just a more comfortable position for me, not that I was necessarily more relaxed.

Dennis, Welcome to PW and the Alfred's thread! I hope you find your piano journey fun and beneficial to your well being. I have no idea how long it typically takes before hands start feeling stronger. Have you noticed any difference yet after playing for a few months? As for the Alfred's books, I think most of us are using the "all in one" version. I imagine the CD would be nice to have. The book I received from a friend didn't come with one, so I use YouTube to get an idea of how the pieces I'm not familiar with should sound.

fizikisto, I tried your fun tip with the B major scale. It wasn't entirely a blind test, though, because I knew there'd be 2 or more black keys based on zrtf90's comments. Even so, it took a LOT of going back and forth between the C and B scale before I had my final answer. I was pleasantly surprised to find out I had it 100% correct! After that I tried the D flat major scale. I had a hard time hearing the difference between the notes on that scale, while at the same time I knew what it should be because I could see the steps between the keys on the C scale. So I gave up on it. But overall I'm really encouraged that I did as well as I did, especially considering that one of my first threads on PW was about my concern that I might be tone deaf. smile
_________________________
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
XXXV

Top
#2337577 - 10/15/14 06:24 AM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Dennis R in WA]
Purkoy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/13/14
Posts: 53
Loc: United Kingdom
Originally Posted By: Dennis R in WA
There seems to be two or three variations of Book 1. One is just the plain book. Another is "All in one", and finally a Book 1 with a DVD.


First, it's a wise move getting a teacher, particularly if you have some physical considerations about your hands, as she will guide you in avoiding any bad practices that might lead to pain or discomfort. Although I saved up a bit and spent as much as I could afford on a good piano, I've realised that the best investment is a good teacher.

I too was initially confused by the multiple editions of the Alfred Book 1. If you have a look on Amazon, they all have the 'Look Inside' feature which allows you to see the contents pages, and some of the contents too. If you open a couple 'side by side' in your computer's browser, you can compare them quite easily. The one I went for is the All-In-One course, which is easy to recognise as it's the one with the plastic comb binding, which is also good as it opens flat on the music rest, and it comes with a DVD. It contains the same material as the other books, but with additions in music theory. I'm glad I bought this one. Once I'd acquired a degree of competence, and moved further in to the pieces for play in the book, I found them very pleasing, and all the groundwork in the book gives the skills and knowledge to play them. So enjoyable have they been that I've now ordered the Level 2 book.

Quote:
She also warned me that it will take about a year to get through the first book


She's right. It may vary from person to person, depending on circumstances, but once you accept that it requires patience and commitment, you will find yourself making time every day to set aside for piano. It becomes a very personal 'me time' part of the day. There will be moments where you feel something is never going to 'click', but you just keep going, and eventually, it works. Scan the threads on this forum, and you will see exactly this with other beginners, and I can promise you you'll never encounter a problem that hasn't faced someone else on this forum at one time, and you'll benefit from finding out about their experiences with it too.

You also have another advantage as an adult beginner, which is that you're doing this because you want to, so you have a powerful incentive to keep learning.

I'd offer one word of caveat. Once you start your lessons with your teacher, she may have you play on a full sized and weighted real piano. I started in a way similar to you, with a Yamaha PSR 333 keyboard. The tactile feedback your fingers get from a real piano is very different from that on an electronic keyboard like these Yamahas. They are great fun, and I learned so much from mine, but you may find that it won't be long before you feel the need for a full-sized piano keyboard with the same kind of 'feel' as your teacher's piano. She will guide you, but you'll also get heaps of guidance here too, because there are experienced teachers here as well as learners.

Taking up piano, however, is one decision you'll never regret.
_________________________


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#2338913 - 10/18/14 09:39 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: 244
Loc: Central Texas
I didn't get a lot of practice time in this week, so I'm still on the "Chipanecas" piece. I think I should be able to finish it up in another day or two.

I've started reserving a small portion of each practice session for some non-Alfred's stuff, such as my Pathways to Artistry technique book. Today I worked on the Arm-to-Arm independence lesson which involved one hand playing a slur while the other hand is playing staccato. I'm encouraged that I did much better than I expected. I do pretty good once I get it going, but playing those first few notes is definitely a challenge for me while I try to get my hands to start off doing separate things.

My Scales Bootcamp book arrived and I've started checking off some of the core challanges for the C major scale that I've been working on. I like it! Thanks, fizikisto, for recommending it.

So... how's everyone else doing? Making progress and having fun, I hope. smile


Edited by TX-Bluebonnet (10/18/14 09:40 PM)
_________________________
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
XXXV

Top
#2338916 - 10/18/14 10:02 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
fizikisto Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 550
Loc: Hernando, MS
Hi Linda! I'm glad that you like the scales bootcamp book. I really like the approach it has. smile
_________________________
Nord Stage 2 HA88
Roland RD800

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#2338917 - 10/18/14 10:08 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
Barry1963 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/25/13
Posts: 62
Loc: Nashville, Tennessee
I have yet to "finish" book one, little over a year now at it. But im also studying Viola. I have borrowed other method books from the library on Piano and I feel Ive made a lot of progress. Also use a couple online learning sources.

Im really enjoying it. When I took up guitar 40 some years ago I had a goal to be in a band. I reached that goal and played bar bands for many years and some solo gigs as well.

Now a days I play for me and the occasional get together. I also write songs and have been playing them on Piano. Ive got a big chord poster that sits in view on the wall and Im learning them well. Ive been having a ball working on walking bass line blues also. And Ive even recorded a few piano backing tracks to play along with my Viola.

So, thats my progress update. loving the journey and working at my own pace. I will finish book one but it may take me two years since Im learning from other sources as well.
_________________________
start date: August 25th 2013
currently Alfreds book #1
Hallet & Davis Co , spinet

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#2338925 - 10/18/14 11:00 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: 244
Loc: Central Texas
Great update, Barry! It really does sound like you're having a lot of fun. I think it's hard enough learning just one instrument. And I certainly can't imagine learning two at a time. Plus writing songs? Ya know, I think maybe you're having a little too much fun! laugh As for the Alfred's book, my "finish" date keeps slipping further into the future. But, like you, I'm fine with that.
_________________________
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
XXXV

Top
#2338931 - 10/18/14 11:50 PM Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: Mark...]
Barry1963 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/25/13
Posts: 62
Loc: Nashville, Tennessee
Well, Ive got 6 years in on Viola now so most of my practice time there is in advancing techniques . Viola is Alto clef, and Piano of course treble & Bass so my sight reading skills get a work out.


But like I said, Im doing it all in fun and thats what matters to me
_________________________
start date: August 25th 2013
currently Alfreds book #1
Hallet & Davis Co , spinet

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#2340020 - Yesterday at 11:33 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: 244
Loc: Central Texas
It took longer than I thought it would, but I finally finished up "Chiapanecas" this evening. Tomorrow I'll start "Auld Lang Syne." I may just stick with one Alfred's piece at a time for a while since I'm also learning a new piece for the upcoming quarterly recital.

We had a great turnout from the Alfred's learners at the last recital. It'd be great if we could do that again.
_________________________
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
XXXV

Top
#2340071 - 26 minutes 15 seconds ago Re: Alfred's Basic and ALL in One Adult Piano Course Book #1 [Re: TX-Bluebonnet]
EnGee Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 06/28/14
Posts: 72
Loc: Auckland, NZ
Originally Posted By: TX-Bluebonnet
It took longer than I thought it would, but I finally finished up "Chiapanecas" this evening. Tomorrow I'll start "Auld Lang Syne." I may just stick with one Alfred's piece at a time for a while since I'm also learning a new piece for the upcoming quarterly recital.

We had a great turnout from the Alfred's learners at the last recital. It'd be great if we could do that again.


It is nice to hear about your progress Linda smile How many books you are studying at the same time? I'm limiting myself to 3 sources of lessons (including EarMaster) and 2 score books (still just one piece from each book!) but I'm careful to not get deeper now in any thing, just following the slow progress in Alfred's /e-media lessons. I don't think I need to practice Scales or Hanon in this stage. I feel a progress in the movements of my fingers though smile

You are also preparing for the recital which is about to come in less than one month. I don't know if I will participate this recital. It depends on how good I can play the piece.

I'm still between e-media tutorial and Alfred's book. They are both so good really that I can't choose between, so mostly I will continue with both (even with the next levels). I just started with Sharp lesson in Alfred's book, while still little bit before that in e-media which has more difficult exercises than Alfred's book.

I started also with EarMaster (every day about 5-10 mins). I'm in the intervals still (now identifying the major or minor interval) which is not difficult of course. I think I will make it a mess later with the other intervals laugh

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