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Assignments

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A student comes brand new at my door. Usually they’re a bit nervous, so, I try to put them at ease with jokes. All of them terrific, I can assure you. The student does or does not relax, but, at least, she’s able able to work. I always start easy. I know how the game
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Trust

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Ah! Trust, what a subject! The big subject! The only subject to get a long term job in the music business, really. Let’s talk about it, shall we? When you go to an audition and you know you can play the drum parts they ask you to prepare, what will make the difference
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Getting personal

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When a student enters my room, I don’t have any preconceived ideas. I look at her in the moment. I have only the faintest idea of what to expect. She could have had a great week of practice and be ready to tear it up on the piano. But she might have struggled to find a
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Risky trivia

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For the longest time I thought that my students were only interested in the data. If I was teaching piano or drums, it had to be about technique and what’s on the page. I was forgetting something, students are people and music is a universe, when the two meet there is a
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R.I.P Taylor Hawkins

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Taylor Hawkins took on an incredible challenge when he joined the Foo-Fighter. I would be frightened to play for Dave Grohl, and more than that, play the very drum parts he wrote (Let’s not forget that Dave Grohl did his own drumming during the first album of the band. As a
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The Dark Ages.

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Because music notation wasn’t perfected before let’s say the 1400, we have very little ideas what the Greek listened to, or the Romans, for that matter. By the way, the music notation we have is French. Just saying. Anyway, besides the lack of music notation,
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Right this moment.

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We admire the music of Mozart. Its beauty, its grace, its power touches our heart. On any given day there is a concert on earth featuring a composition by the great master. And that fact would surprise Mozart himself because he was a man of his time and wrote for his time. He
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The infinite language.

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I am always amazed at what twelve sounds can produce. I am talking about the chromatic scale here. The whole of western music was written with exactly that number of notes. Now, the laws of harmony restrains the use of some of those sounds. For example, it is advised not to use
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When you need your instrument.

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In winter 1838-1839, the composer Frédéric Chopin, and his partner back then, the writer George Sand, and her two small children, settled temporarily on the island of Majorca (Balearic Islands). They settled in Cartuja de Valldemossa, an old palace and later on a monastery
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