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New Age Music - What Is It Good For?
Let's face it. The world will not end if there isn't another new age music CD on the market. So why bother? Why play when most people don't care or want to hear the kind of music you like? The answer lies in the nature of art itself, for the world really does not need art. It can survive without painting, sculpture or music. It can survive, but it would be a pretty dreary place.
But the main reason we play is not for the world but for ourselves. We must play for ourselves first and if people hear and like it fine. If not, that' s fine too. As long as we don't deprive ourselves of the enriching experience improvisation can bring.
When I first started playing I wanted to create something others could admire. Something that people could say, wow, listen to that. That guy is really good. But I was miserable and miles away from the true purpose of playing music. It wasn't until a year or so later that I realized that if I don't please myself first, no one would be pleased. Nor did it matter if others were pleased or not.
So, what is new age piano improvisation good for? Absolutely nothing - except the joy it can bring to you and to me when we enter the flow and the music pours out of us. It is so precious to be able to do this. So fleeting it may be too. A second or a minute of forgetting yourself at the piano is a sacred act. One that grows and develops. It matures of itself. Much like meditation. If one practices the art, one grows in proportion to that practice.
But this kind of growth is spiral in nature. There are times that the music seems lifeless and dull. At these times we feel the same inside. But a day or two later, we are in a new place and the music flows like water. This is a mystery, this process. One can only go with it and not fight it. You are creating art second by second when you improvise. This kind of beauty is fleeting - but is the most precious. Guard it. Cherish it. And if you feel inclined share it with the rest of the world.
Edward Weiss is a pianist/composer and webmaster of Quiescence Music's online piano lessons. He has been helping students learn how to play piano in the New Age style for over 14 years and works with students in private, in groups, and now over the internet. Stop by now at http://www.quiescencemusic.com/piano_lessons.html for a FREE piano lesson!
Acoustic Or Electronic Drums - What Is Your Choice?
A debate rages on in the drumming world! You might think that the debate centers on brands of drums, or different styles of drums. However, you would be wrong. This debate centers on the use of electronic drums in the music industry.
Guitar Performance - Make The Most of It!
Getting ready for any type of guitar performance can be a little scary at first, but if you are well prepared, you will find the experience much easier to handle. Whether you're playing with a band, or by yourself; are a seasoned performer, or a rookie; there are several things you can do to make the most of your performance. First and foremost, realize that you are not the first one on the block to ever feel jittery about playing your guitar in public. It's a common experience among musicians, and being a little nervous can even work in your favor.
Turn It Up: Plugging Into The Perfect Guitar And Amp Settings
Yowza! Did you hear that hideous noise? It sounded like a combination of nails on a chalkboard, a cat in a dryer, and a baby wailing at the top of his lungs. Do you have any idea of what made that awful sound? As a long-time musician, I think I may have the answer for you. It's a guitarist fiddling for the first time with his new amp.
Composing George Winston Style
If you're a fan of New Age piano, no doubt you've listened to some of George Winston's music. What I find fascinating about his songs is how he creates them. Most improvisers/composers start with the melody, usually because it's the easiest way to begin.
What Works Best in New Age Piano Improvisation
Many students want to know how to improvise. What they really want to know is how to be able to keep an improvisation going.
To Record or Not To Record - At Home, That Is
I will be honest. I am addicted to music recording. I love moving faders, adjusting levels, panning, reverberating, sequencing, you name it. I especially love all that software, and the colorful ways that they show the music as a waveform. It is just cool.
Origin of Erik Saties Gnossiennes
The 'trois Gnossiennes' (1890) is a set of dance-like pieces of similar character, like the earlier composed 'trois Sarabandes' (1887) and 'trois Gymnopédies' (1888). The 'trois Gnossiennes' were first published by Satie as a set through Rouart, Lerolle & Cie. in 1913.
Choosing a Jazz Band for Your Party
In many years of arranging jazz bands for all sorts of events I am struck by the similarity of how the request is made by most of our clients.
Guitar Facts: A Glossary of Terms
It is said that the forerunner of the guitar, the lute, was created by the Greek god, Apollo. In India, it is believed that the sitar, another stringed instrument from which the guitar is descended, is sacred to the goddess Saraswati. And one of the most popular tales about the guitar is the story of how it was pressed into service to play a hymn of praise to Jesus Christ at a Christmas Eve mass when the organ of the church broke.
How to Use the Entire Piano Keyboard
There are 88 keys on the piano keyboard. Most pianists use about 1/3 of this number most of the time. Why?
George Winston and New Age Piano Playing
The first time I heard George Winston play back in the early 1980's I was blown away. I didn't know why I liked this music. All I knew was that it made me feel good and that was enough. I didn't even play piano back then but something about this music seeped into me almost haunting me. The way he let the notes ring out and wasn't concerned with pop flavorings. A new sound for the time.
CD Review: Amber - My Kind of World
Pop/Rock Recording Artist Amber, who has scored seven #1 Billboard Hits (and 3 more Top Tens) in her Career, including "If You Could Read My Mind", "This is Your Night" and "Sexual (Li Da Di)", is back! And she does not disappoint! "My Kind of World" marks the beginning of a new stage in Amber's career. Like Janet Jackson before her, Amber has taken complete creative "control" on this new project and the result is an artistic triumph with huge commercial appeal!
How to Create a Multi-artistic Piece - Part II
In the last article, the creation of a theme, its development, and the use of a libretto were discussed. As one may recall, the theme is the kernel of a production, which dictates the nature of the piece. And in relation to the theme, is the thematic structure that serves as a guide as to how the production will manifest. Ultimately this information is transferred to a libretto. In contrast to the previous article, the strengths and weaknesses of the arts will be addressed. Before one can choose the various media for their multi-artistic production, one must understand the arts in part and as a whole. There are three general categories that the arts can be classified, which include the auditory, visual, and linguistic. Although some art forms can be placed in two or more categories, such as poetry, fundamentally it is made of words, but can be executed vocally.
Patriotic Music: Surprising Secrets About Those Flag-Waving Sounds
Whether played by a marching band, an orchestra, or a rock group, there are patriotic tunes that everyone in America finds familiar, exciting and uplifting. But how much do you know about how these songs were created? And what do you know about the people who wrote them?
Les Paul Vintage Gibson Guitars
Les Paul vintage Gibson guitars were first producedin 1952. These guitars were the first solid body electricthat Gibson had made. The 1952 version of the LesPaul vintage guitar has a gold top nitro-celluloselacquer finish, and no serial number. This Gibsonwas designed by Les and included Kluson tuners,a pair of P90 pickups, and retailed for $210.
Radio - What?s Happened To It?
Remember when radio stations played great music?
Top Rap Song
After months of email and posts, we've finally compiled and rated what you submitted as the top rap songs of all time. At first we tried to rank these, but we realized that due to the diverse nature of these songs it seemed unfair to do so. Depends on personal opinion, right? Wrong!
How to Buy an Electric Guitar Online
With the increased proliferation of online guitar and musical equipment stores, as well as the lower prices and greater selection that these stores generally offer, most people are now turning to the internet to help them make their guitar purchases. Shopping online is simpler and more convenient than shopping in a store and, since all major guitar manufacturers have good websites, product information and specs are more easily accessible online than they are simply by asking a salesperson in a store.
Free, Legal Music Online
Almost everyone has heard about the massive crack down on Internet music piracy that has been occurring over the past few years. Napster was taken down (although it has now returned as a pay service), other file sharing programs now require users to pay for a license and the RIAA and other similar organizations are doing their best to hunt down copyright offenders and put an end to their crime sprees. The consumers on the other hand argue that their actions hurt nobody, that there is no damage done to anyone by their not buying an album. Furthermore, they claim, MP3s allow them to sample a CD before purchasing it, thus actually helping sales.
Micing a Kick Drum
This months tip deals with micing kick drums.
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