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Song Notes

The Gift of Making Music

The gift of making music


Why bother to spend the money and time on piano lessons?  There are so many excuses - I'm too old, It takes too long to learn, With homework and other activities my child doesn't have time.  It costs too much.


In today's crazy world of instant music, instant ordering, where you no longer have to spend time at the library reading through piles of books for research, where you no longer have to wait for the radio station to play your favorite song, we need something to take time to accomplish something with our own two hands and stretch and work our brains outside of our comfort zone.  

This is one of the many reasons for piano lessons.  Learning how to take the time needed to accomplish something that is “hard” helps to develop a work ethic that the “instant” does not create.  Learning how to practice with discipline and taking instruction, not as criticism, but as steps needed to accomplish the goal is priceless.  


Piano lessons are not only for the “talented”or just for the young.  It is, in fact, for anyone that loves creating music.  It is for the person who loves the sound of the piano.  It is for anyone that gets a funny tingly feeling in the pit of their stomach as they play something they worked hard to be able to play.  It's for the person of any age that loves to create at the keyboard.  Sometimes the really hard part is stepping out of the comfort zone and going to that first lesson.  It can seem that there is so much to learn but that can be the excitement.  it just requires time and the enjoyment of the journey.

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Wooden Piano

Why We Learn Scales

“Why do I have to practice those yucky scales?”

Oh how many times have I heard that.  At first the student is delighted to learn how to play a scale, but soon they tire of them, especially as the scales get more difficult. Soooooooo……………………

Why do we learn and practice scales?  Why did Rachmaninoff warm up everyday playing through all the scales?   Why are they so important?

These are all good questions and here are some of my answers.

*Scales help each finger to work independently of each other.

*Scales help hands work independent of each other.

*Scales help the pianist feel more at home playing on the black keys.

*Scales help teach correct technique and reinforce it.

*Scales help promote accuracy when playing as well as build speed.

Most importantly though…….

Scales are music

All music from classical to jazz to pop to worship music is built on scale patterns.

When we learn scales we are actually pre-learning music and this is true of all instruments. 

So when we practice scales it isn’t just about notes and fingering, it’s about creating music.  If we are creating music, then we are not only engaging our fingers and eyes, but also our ears.  Practicing scales as music helps teach our ears to listen to what we play.  Is our tone even?  Are our thumbs thumping down?  Is each note clear?

And these are some reasons to learn scales, but Mozart said it best…..

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Piano Sonta No 16 K545

Performed by Ingrid Haebler

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