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Music & MP3 Information
Learning How To Improvise
Those of you who have been reading my articles for some time now know that I believe improvisation to be the cornerstone of musical creativity. Why? Because without the ability to just play, we become stifled and the "real" music that is within each of us withers and dies.
Composing for Dummies
When most people hear the word composer, they automatically think of classical composers like Mozart or Beethoven. This is the point where many "would be" composers freeze up because they tell themselves that their music could never be as good. And this is also the point where would be music makers end their desire to create.
Piano Playing and Performance Anxiety
I'll never forget the first time I played the piano for an audience.
How to Organise a Gig or a Live Music Event - the Budget
Three times in the last month I've been asked the question, "what do I need to do to organise a gig?" In reality, when this question is asked it can mean several things: How do I find a venue? How do I sort out the PA? How do I get an audience? And so on.
JOHN LENNON - The Man and His Times
John Lennon wasn't always my favorite Beatle; at first it was Paul. But gradually, over a period of time, it was John Lennon who won my heart. I think the transition began sometime during the latter part of the 1960s. Back then, it seemed to my young mind, that the world was falling apart. Revolution and anarchy were on the doorstep. John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy had each been assassinated, riots were springing up all over the south, Watts was burning and the war in Viet Nam was escalating. Out of the turmoil a growing hunger was born among many of my generation, including myself, for truth and peace.
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.
Record Collecting Still Thriving in the Twenty-first Century
It may surprise many to find that the hobby of record collecting, long thought dead after the introduction of the compact disc, is still alive and well. Granted, many music fans have long replaced their records with CDs, but for many Baby Boomers and Generation X-ers, the hobby of buying and collecting record albums and singles continues to be a focal point in their lives.Records offer the tactile sense of a substantial product, unlike the CD. The seven-inch, 45 RPM single often came with a picture sleeve that has no equivalent among compact discs. The nostalgia of records draws many back to their younger days. And records still sound great. A recent check of the Bay auction site showed 959,857 records for sale. That's just under one million records!These records aren't selling at garage-sale prices, either. At any given time, there might be six thousand records by the Beatles for sale, some of which have sold for up to $40,000. Elvis isn't far behind; his first five singles, issued on the small Memphis-based, Sun label, routinely bring $2000 at auction in nice condition. Other artists, such as the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, James Brown, or Madonna have issued records that not only command sky-high prices, but also draw a lot of bids. The greatest interest in record collecting is in artists of the 1960's and 1970's, but newer bands, such as Nirvana, draw a lot of attention from younger collectors. Nivrana's first single, Love Buzz issued in 1988, sells for up to $2000 and there are several other bands, such as the Misfits, that have released numerous records that sell for more than $1000. What do collectors do with these records? Some play them, some frame them, some simply put them on the shelf. There are collectors who only buy records that they intend to play and others that simply want anything that was ever commercially released by the artist that interests them. There is no pigeonholing a collector; they come in all shapes and sizes. For them, finding a long-unavailable single that has eluded them for years is like winning the lottery.For those who are interested, there are literally thousands of Websites devoted to artists, records, and record collecting. There are well-known magazines, like Goldmine , Discoveries, and in the UK, Record Collector. Anyone who thinks they might be interested in collecting records has more resources available to them than ever before. Twenty years ago, people thought that records would be long forgotten by now. They couldn't have been more wrong.
If Seals Can Sing, Why Cant You?
It sounds like a side show, doesn't it? It does to me. But it's true; researchers have discovered that some varieties of seals really do sing. Indeed, male leopard seals have been heard singing complex melodies in their lonely search for a mate. Likewise, male Weddell seals, which are a very social creature, lure their mate by improvising original melodies the way a master musician would in front of an audience.
Guitar Practice - Make It Your Priority!
Every student realizes that guitar practice is important if they wish to become a better musician. Even so, many have trouble establishing a regular practice routine. Other responsibilities have a way of squeezing them into a work-a-holic lifestyle, leaving little room left for personal pursuits. Even teens and children are over-stretched these days with school and other extra-curricular activities. So, what's the secret to creating an effective guitar practicing schedule? The answer: MAKE IT YOUR PRIORITY!
Review: Medications - All Your Favorite People In One Place
One of the most intriguing aspects of music is how easily it can transform one's mood. The right notes, at the right tempo, and all of a sudden, BAM! You're in a good mood. This 3 piece from Washington, DC knows exactly how to pull this off. Consisting of members of the now defunct band "Faraquet", Medications oddly enough, sounds a lot like Faraquet. It's peculiar how a band consisting of the same musicians can sound very similar. After the Faraquet breakup 2 of the founding members created Medications and while the sound is very similar, the new third wheel does add some new elements into the mix. A mere 6 months since the release of their Medications EP, they have returned with their first full length Your favorite people all in one place available now on Dischord.
Soul Band for a Party
Was the request six months ago, a sixtieth birthday party, the client said. It got me thinking. There is a whole untapped market out there for people who lived as teenagers and twenty somethings through the sixties and seventies. They are all coming up to this big sixtieth birthday date and they all love the kind of music I love to play and earn my living out of! More than that, their kids are off their hands, their mortgage is paid up and they can afford to splash out on a big celebration.
Music and Healing: The Power of Meaningful Words and Music
We All Have a Favorite Piece of Music that Moves Us to a Special Place in Our Hearts. A Conversion About the Music We Love and How It Colors Our Lives.
Music Making as Spiritual Experience
If you've been playing piano for some time, you may come upon periods where you forget yourself and only the music remains. You might even have had a spiritual experience. A phenomenon where emotion and intellect become one and the outside world disappears.
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.
Yo, is Rap Just Another Four Letter Word?
Flaunting any excessive or anti-social behavior is considered brazen. When it is no longer considered brazen it is proof that it has become embedded as part of our culture. Not to say this is a good thing, after all headhunting was considered a cultural norm in some societies. The question to ask here may be, was rap ever truly a part of our culture? Will it eventually run out of steam and go the way of things like doing the twist, afro haircuts or break dancing? I for one would argue that it is not truly a part of the American cultural scene, but is a forced, twisted and contrived money machine that appeals to only the basest passions of the youth in our country.
Polychords and the Jazz Improviser: How to Practice & Apply Polychords to Improv
In the world of music, many Jazz improvisers and Classical composers eventually venture into exploring poly-harmony within their respective art form. Poly harmony is the simultaneous sounding of more than one harmonic concept. The preponderance with poly-harmony began the late 19th-early 20th centuries with classical composers as Stravinsky and Debussy. About sixty years later, jazz musicians as John Coltrane and Richie Bierach incorporated such ideas into their music. The benefits of learning poly-chords will enhance an improviser's repertoire of harmonic concepts. Thus they can create harmonic colorings that can influence a listener's outlook. This article will focus on how once can practice and incorporate tertian polychords into their improvisational styles. Many of the examples and references within this article will make use of the seventh chord and triad. One should to explore other tertian harmonies such as ninths, elevenths, and all other similar formulations.
Does Your CD Cover $ell (Or Suck)?
Oh, I know the last part of the title (Suck) isn't a very pleasant description to apply to anyone's CD cover. But, in the interest of plain old honesty, and to face our demons head on, I wanted to (again) utilize a worst case scenario that we can only improve from.
Top 7 Donts for Successful Improvisation
1. Don't try and make something happen. Trying blocks the creative flow and will result in blocks.
Legend Vega Releasing New Pop CD
Legend Vega is scheduled to release her newest CD this summer, Personal Space. Fans characterize Legend's style as a cross between Mariah Carey and a female version of Ricky Martin. She was born under the lights of Broadway in New York City but raised to the beat of Salsa and Merengue on the hot sands of Puerto Rico. Legend Vega is an experienced singer, songwriter, and model. She has just finished recording her newest CD with all of her own material. Her mainstream pop style and her Latin background make her an excellent crossover artist for the U.S. market. Her album features a broad mix of pop music recorded in English but with many Latin influences.
So You Want to be President? Learn to Play a Musical Instrument!
President Harry S. Truman, the man in the White House when the United States intervened on behalf of the millions of innocent people who were being displaced and massacred by Hitler's Nazi Germany, claimed to have practiced his piano lessons for two hours every morning during his childhood. Likewise, President Warren Harding was said to be able to play every instrument except the trombone and the clarinet. Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) played the organ. Of course we all remember President Clinton and his saxophone, but did you know that President Nixon was an accomplished pianist?
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