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Learning tunes and practising


frogspawn
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That's just how I feel. Its not good for my confidence when I keep being bothered because I'm practicing.

So what happened when siblings started to play instruments?

They were at school (so got home earlier) or unemployed so home while I was at work. so they could practice with no one there.

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I believe I learn all the time I'm playing, but particularly when stretching myself to play pieces beyond my ability; I'd say if you really like a piece, don't worry about whether the music's too hard even if it takes months to actually get to the stage where it sounds half competent, because it will do you good, whether you actually get it to the finished stage or not.

 

Lucky for me I have a lovely spot in my sun room. I have my music stand and concertina always available to play.

Where I live, here in Brasstown, we have a community center that sits empty most of the time, which would be a wonderful place to practice. Maybe you could find such a place to practice. I just know how hard when there are unhappy people snaring at you to be quiet..... Gee, I think I will go practice right now :P

 

Pam

 

Brasstown, NC

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One of the reasons I really like my Wheatstone tutor (brass reeds, dating from 1851--not what is considered by most to be a particularly desirable instrument) is that it is so soft that I can practice after my wife has gone to sleep or in a hotel room when I'm away from home without bothering anyone. I think you could play lullabies with it. I also have much louder instruments which I play for dances and sessions. One solution to the "where can I practice without bothering anyone" question is to change it to "what can I practice"---a nice excuse for having more than one concertina (though not such a good excuse for having five).

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Practicing can have negative connotations for many people, like studying for exams etc - think more in terms of playing. You should enjoy your playing, if you don't then just give up - so play. Play tunes you like and are easy and also ones you need to work on.

 

 

Here here!. I've always argued that kids should learn to make music , with others preferably, rather than 'learn an instrument'. How many were put off by the practice in a cold and lonely 'parlour' while other kids were out playing games and getting to know each other - and how many did learn but now never play at all.

Edited by michael sam wild
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  • 4 weeks later...
here is my overly lengthy response at another forum:

http://forums.chiffandfipple.com/viewtopic...cticing#p805158

 

funny. it says not to practice scales or arpeggios. i guess that was because it was for the wooden flute. i am not really interested in playing the wooden flute in every key. so... here, when i am talking on the scale thread, yeah, i am very interested in playing the concertina in every key.

 

so that goes to show--take what i say with a grain of salt!

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I can get rid of them for a weekend but usually not at the same time. *sigh*

Apparently I give my brother a headache with my practicing and my sister thinks the music I play is rubbish...and after 2 hours my mum 'can't think' with the 'noise'.

So 2 hours seems to be the longest I can practice before I get all three complaining. :(

 

I know how do you feel... when I began to learn fiddle, my mom told me 'stop killing the cat' :(

 

Nowadays, my wife likes my fiddle playing, but is pretty indiferent about my concertina and melodeon playing... The only negative point is that the cat runs like hell when he sees me taking the concertina - well, I scared him a couple of times playing loud chords - :lol:

 

So, another good reason for independence: play whenever you want ;) Indeed, I didn't improved my playing until I rented a flat for first time!

 

Cheers,

 

Fer

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  • 2 weeks later...

I don't bother much with scales once I've found where the notes are but I do lots of little exercises which are tricky parts of tunes.. I'm playing Cross the Fence to the neighbour's Wife in G(McGlinchey's Hornpipe) a lot and it has quite a few passages that go down low on the LHS of the C/G Anglo and I want to get a nice use of the little (pinkie) finger. Another is The Stoney Steps.

 

These bits I will play over and over again. I call it PADI Play ad Infinitum or PADNA or Play ad Nauseum. Starting steadily then coming up to speed. Seems to fix it in memory for me.

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I discovered a way to get some "quantity" practice time in without bothering anybody(much). Recently while sitting with my family to watch a movie I absently picked up the concertina and started running through some scales and cords -- completely silently. That is I just pressed the buttons without any bellows motion. I did this off and on for a couple of hours without thinking about it much.

 

To my delight when I took up the tina later to do some real practice, I noticed a marked improvement in my skill level. Now whenever I'm otherwise wasting time in front of the TV, I get in some button pressing exercise time. I think it has really helped mold my hands to the instrument.

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The two ways I have found to improve my playing is to record yourself and listen carefully to your playing, even as a beginner you can hear where you are going wrong and what you need to practice. The other is to join up with a group of like minded musicians or join a session,record it and learn the tunes for the next session .If you live miles from anywhere with modern technology you can send each other MP3s on your progress,choose different tunes for you all to play.Play against your friends recording to create a double/multiple track.In this way you all progress together, have fun creating a band even though you live hundreds of miles apart.

Do not fall into the trap of playing the same tune over and over again if you have practice time.What are you achieving?The ability to play one tune.Force yourself onwards,then go back to your original tune to see if you have improved from the last time you played it.

I joined bands that were more advanced at music than I was, it forced me to try and catch up.I had no time to go backwards to old music only forwards to learn new tunes.

Above all do not expect to be brilliant at playing in a few weeks,months or years of playing, a musical instrument is a lifetime project even forty years on, you still have plenty to learn,new ideas to try out,experimentation and new and demanding tunes.Have the patience to stick at it. From the minute you first pick up a concertina you are a better player than before you started.

The first bit of advice regarding recording your playing holds firm even after forty years hard work.

Al

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