Blog

Group Learning

 


PianoEasy lessons are delivered to a small class of students rather than one-on-one because there are lots of benefits to learning piano, or anything for that matter, in a group.

 

Some of the benefits found in research by Felder and Brent (North Carolina State University, 1994) included:

 

  • Higher academic achievement
  • Greater persistence
  • Better high-level reasoning and critical thinking skills
  • Deeper understanding of learned material
  • Lower levels of anxiety and stress
  • ...

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Put On Your Blues Shoes!

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GET INTO IT!

Hold on to your seats (and listen for that I IV V, some grace notes and riffs):

Solo piano; young Luka Sestak (a few years ahead for some of you).

Here is Diana Krall, playing a blues in Bb “Baby Baby, One More Time"

Pinetop Perkins: slow blues

Sweet Home Chicago

Here is Elvis playing Blue Suede Shoes, (he is using A, D and E for his I, IV and V chords.)

Oscar Peterson C Jam Blues

Stormy Monday T Bone Walker

I like this Stormy Monday by Rose Winters too:

And by Johnny...

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Learning about music through community - and vice versa

At the beginning of this winter an ad crossed my Instagram feed saying I could quickly and easily learn piano. I wanted to learn piano but I kept scrolling because I thought I didn't have the time or money. The same piano studio crossed my feed again a day later, this time with a video of someone playing a sweet, melancholy tune on the piano. The music was beautiful and clearly had an impact on me, because the third time I saw a PianoEasy ad on my phone I caught the bus into Fremantle to...

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Mood Music: How making and enjoying music can benefit your mental health

 

Image credit: healthline.com

 

Whether we write music for a living or have never touched an instrument in our lives, we all have our own special songs to listen to when we're feeling down. It's widely accepted that music can have a positive effect on your mood, which is probably why Spotify was estimated to have 159 million active usersby the end of last year - everyone loves listening to music, but what about playing it?

 

A child psychiatry team from the University of...

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Feel the fear and play it anyway

PianoEasy Students

I love all of my students. I am so proud of them and I am so happy that I have been able to help them on the joyous journey of musical self expression. Everyone grows together, we have times of fun and laughter, of exploration and celebration and of inexorable beauty when making music together surpasses anything words can say.

And then I go and ruin it all by saying something stupid like “end of year concert”. Actually I try and disguise the trauma by calling it our “end of...

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Pianos are your friend

Love Thy Piano

  • Pianos are there for you whether you’re happy or sad or however you feel.
  • Pianos connect you with other people, and people from other places and times.
  • Pianos don’t judge you.
  • Pianos make you sound good.
  • Pianos are easy to learn to play, but impossible to outgrow.
  • Pianos don’t get smelly when they get a work out.
  • You don’t need to give up piano when you get old.
  • Pianos don’t want to talk about football.
  • Pianos don’t get lost easily.
  • Pianos don’t get...

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How to get there

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With PianoEasy you learn a lot. Within a term people are playing around with their repertoires, making up their own blues or working with all their chords playing pop songs. Some people may already be composing their own song. Within two terms some people are doing lots of improvising; with the blues, with our jazz chords, with all those flat and minor chords. Within a year people are also reading quite advanced pieces and no one’s repertoire is the same. Within two years...

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Learning more than music

Anneka behind the PianoEasy program

What happens in the early stages of the wonderful PianoEasy program?

      • PianoEasy become familiar with the mechanics of the piano and how the keys, strings, pedal and dampers work;
      • PianoEasy players learn how to work best with their bodies in order to make the most beautiful music on this instrument (that isn’t very easy to adjust to your body);
      • PianoEasy players become thoroughly familiar with that wonderful “2 blacks 3 blacks” pattern and soon learn all the twelve note...

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How pianos became what they are today

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A piano is an incredible invention! Its design has been perfected over hundreds of years and continues to be improved upon even now.

 

Before humans had anything recognisable as a piano, we had the harpsichord and hammered dulcimer.

 

The harpsichord is like a piano in that it has a keyboard and strings, but the strings are plucked instead of hammered so it produces a very different sound.

The hammered dulcimer is like a piano because, as the name suggests, the strings...

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Improvisation

Being able to make things up as we go along is a great skill to have in life, and it's equally important in playing piano. A great example of that happened at a Ray Charles concert in 1958 when Charles and his band had played all of their songs and still had time to spare - he improvised a song he called "What'd I say?", which some say was the first soul song. It became so popular that he ended all of his performances with it from then on.

 

Some piano players (like Ben Folds) make up...

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