Archive for October, 2010


Block chord style of piano playing: Locked hands

Thursday, October 21st, 2010
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There is more than one way to play in a block chord style of piano playing. Today we are going to look at the “locked hands” style made famous by such jazz greats at George Shearing and others. Listen to this short podcast and you’ll get the idea:

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Is it possible to PLAY more notes without READING more notes?

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010
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Is it really possible to play lots more notes in a song without having to read more notes in the sheet music?

The answer is an emphatic YES!

Of course if you just play a song note by note from the printed sheet music, you are limited to the notes on the page. But if instead you learn to read chord symbols it will open up a huge new panorama of possiblities for your piano playing.

Why? Because when you read chord symbols, you can do anything you want with them — arpeggiate them, straddle them, run them in scores of variations, chord them in various rhythms from simple to complex, and on and on. You can improvise to your heart’s content, arranging the song the way you feel it.

But the great thing is that you don’t have to choose between the two ways of playing: you can make a synergy by reading the music and then adding lots of notes based on the chord progressions. That’s what I do when I play most of the time. That gives you the best of both worlds: the ideas that the composer has written into the printed music, and your own ideas as you go along.

Take a look at this short video and you’ll quickly get the idea:

For information about the course that teaches this in detail, please go to How To Play More Notes Without Reading More Notes

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Articulation in Piano Playing: How to Get That Clean, Crisp Sound

Monday, October 18th, 2010
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Articulation in piano playing is exactly like articulation in speech. You’ve heard people that don’t pronounce each word, but slur words into each other. If it is extreme, their words are hard to understand. But you’ve also heard people that pronounce each word clearly –almost all good public speakers do that. Of course anything can be taken to an extreme, but as in speech, piano playing needs to be clean too — so each note can be heard and not all “muched” together. Listen to this short podcast and you will instantly understand.

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Podcast on non-harmonic tones: The appoggiatura

Saturday, October 16th, 2010
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There are several different kinds of non-harmonic tones including passing tones, neighboring tones, suspensions and anticipations. Today our podcast is about appoggiaturas which are non-harmonic tones which occur on a strong beat then resolve to a harmonic tone. Have a listen by clicking on the audio player below:

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Gospel Music Piano Techniques: New Ways to Play Old Songs

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010
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If you enjoy playing hymns or gospel music of any kind, then you need to know that there are umpteen ways to make those old songs sound more interesting and exciting. In this short video I demonstrate a couple of the techniques, such as using chord substitutions, adding fillers, using color tones, altering the melody slightly, and so on.

And for a full course in playing hymns and gospel songs be sure to go on over to www.gospelpiano.com.

Piano techniques for gospel piano

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