Archive for September, 2015


Can You Really Learn Piano Fast & Well At The Same Time?

Monday, September 28th, 2015
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Can  You Really Learn Piano Fast & Well At The Same Time?

Is it really possible to learn piano fast while at the same time learning it correctly?

Good morning. This is Duane. There are basically 2 ways that people learn to play the piano. They either learn to play the piano by ear, by picking things out, and then trial and error until they can play something. Or they take piano lessons and they learn correct finger position and so on. Those are the 2 basic ways. You either play by ear, or you learn to read music.

But what’s the very best way to play piano? Well, obviously it’s a combination of those 2. You can learn to play piano faster and more excitingly. But you can also learn it correctly as you go. But to do that, you have to synthesize the 2 approaches, learning how to read music, but learning all about chords and how to use those chords and improvise and so on. I have a course that deals with that. It’s called the Crash Course in Exciting Piano Playing.

CrashPackage

http://www.pianolessonsbyvideo.com

                              I just wanted to illustrate today how that would work. Let’s say that you’re taking piano lessons, and your piano teacher has assigned a piece, let’s say Kumbaya. You have the music in front of you there. It’s on the sheet music. So you read it painstakingly. Then you learn the left hand. After a while … Right? And you learn how to do that. If you pick it out by ear, then it’s probably going to sound more like this. But eventually you can pick it out if you have a good ear and you figure it out. But the best way is to synthesize those 2 ways. You’re taking lessons, you’re learning to read, either self-taught or from a piano teacher, and you’re learning chords, learning music theory.

The downside of most piano lessons is that kids are not taught music theory. They’re not taught chord playing. So they grow up and they can read music, and as long as they have music in front of them, they can play that music. But, you take that music away and they don’t know what to do. So if I learn how to play that by music, and then I learn chords, then I know I can play full chords in the right hand, and the left. I can learn some patterns based on those chords.

All of that comes out of a knowledge of how to manipulate chords and apply it to the little bit that you do read. So my message to you today is, if you have a chance, learn how to read music to some degree, and then also learn chords, because by combining the 2, then you can learn to play faster, but also better, and a lot more exciting.

Thanks for being with me. If you enjoy these little tips, come on over to PlayPiano.com and sign up for our free series of tips. Hope to see you there. Bye bye for now.

If you are a beginner, or are willing to be a beginner so you learn music and piano from square one, the best possible thing you can do for yourself is to take Duane’s CRASH COURSE IN EXCITING PIANO PLAYING. Come on over to http://www.pianolessonsbyvideo.com and listen to Duane explain why this course is the answer you have been looking for!

Click on this link to watch this video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MDr8Peh7XGw&feature=youtu.be

***For lots more good stuff on piano playing come on over to my website at http://www.playpiano.com and sign up for our free piano tips – “Exciting Piano Chords & Sizzling Chord Progressions!”

Here’s a great little book on chords and chord progressions on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Piano-Chords-Chord-Progressions-Exciting-ebook/dp/B0076OUGDE/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1404158669&sr=1-1&keywords=piano+chords+duane+shinn

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Do you know all the MINOR PIANO CHORDS?

Thursday, September 24th, 2015
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MINOR PIANO CHORDS – Once you know major chords, minor chords are a snap!

Click on this link to watch this video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w951WNTjrHM&feature=youtu.be

If you already know major piano chords, minor piano chords are easy. All you do is lower the 3rd of the major piano chord and you produce a minor piano chord.

If you need to review major chords, please watch this video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36cAkeCfJSM

***For lots more good stuff on piano playing come on over to my website at http://www.playpiano.com and sign up for our free piano tips – “Exciting Piano Chords & Sizzling Chord Progressions!”

Here’s a great little book on chords and chord progressions on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Piano-Chords-Chord-Progressions-Exciting-ebook/dp/B0076OUGDE/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1404158669&sr=1-1&keywords=piano+chords+duane+shinn

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How To Form 9th Chords From a Stack of 3rds

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2015
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9th Chords: A Stack Of Major & Minor 3rds

Our video today demonstrates how to stack 3rds to form different types of 9th chords.

Click on this link to watch this video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dNA8VmY0ngc&feature=youtu.be

Good morning again. This is Duane and we have been doing a series called “Good Stuff You Really Ought to Know About Music.”  We’ve been talking about how to stack 3rds and form chords out of 3rds. We defined a 3rd as the third note of any scale but we said there’s two kinds of 3rds. There’s a major 3rd, made out of 2 whole steps, but then there’s also a minor 3rd made out of a step-and-a-half. If we stack a major 3rd on the bottom and a minor 3rd on top, what we have is a major chord. If on the other hand, we put the minor 3rd on the bottom and the major 3rd on top, we have a minor chord.

Last time, we talked about a 7th chord. A 4-note chord made out of the root,  3rd, 5th and 7th. We talked about some of those kinds of chords. That’s a C major 7th. That’s a C minor major 7th. That’s a C minor 7th, and so on. Today, I’d like to stack 3rds into a 9th chord. To do that, you’ll need a hand larger than mine. I have to use 2 hands to play a 9th chord but perhaps you can do it.

In any case, let’s take … this is the root, the 3rd, the 5th, the 7th, major 7th, and the 9th. A C major 9th chord would be that and the notation would just say “C9” but it means a major 9th. If they want a minor 9th, C minor 9th, you start with a minor chord and then yo have that 9th there but that implies the use of the dominant 7th, not the major 7th. That’s a C minor 9th.

Now let’s take a look at some other possibilities. If you had a C minor chord with a 9th but a major 7th, what would that be called? That would be C minor 9th major 7th. The notation would be a little complex there but it would work. Sometimes you see a notation for a flat 9th, and a flat 9th of course is there but that also implies the dominant 7th. Oops, I’m sorry. A C major chord with a flat 9th. The dominant 7th sounds like that. It’s used a lot to tighten chords, to tighten the chord progression before you move on.

How do you form 9th chords? You form them with a stack of 3rds. If you take a major 3rd, put a minor 3rd on top of it, put a minor 3rd on top of that, and major 3rd on top. In other words, major, minor, major, minor, minor, major, you’ve got a C dominant 9th. If on the other hand you take major, minor, major, minor, then you have a C major 9th. If you have a minor chord, you have a minor 3rd, major 3rd, minor 3rd, major 3rd. That’s a well-balanced chord.

That’s like I was saying yesterday, when I talked about 7th chords, minor 7th chords, they are very well-balanced, aren’t they? There’s a 9th chord that’s well-balanced because you have that grouping of minor intervals, major intervals, minor intervals, major intervals, so it’s well-balanced, whereas something like that is not well-balanced, isn’t it, because it’s minor, major, minor, minor. You have a more dissonant sound.

They’re all usable chords, so that’s how you form 9th chords out of 3rds. We’ll continue on tomorrow with another little lesson, video lesson. If you enjoyed this kind of thing, come on over to playpiano.com and sign up for our series. You’re going to learn a lot. Until I see you there, bye-bye for now.

Click on this link to watch this video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dNA8VmY0ngc&feature=youtu.be

***For lots more good stuff on piano playing come on over to my website at http://www.playpiano.com and sign up for our free piano tips – “Exciting Piano Chords & Sizzling Chord Progressions!”

Here’s a great little book on chords and chord progressions on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Piano-Chords-Chord-Progressions-Exciting-ebook/dp/B0076OUGDE/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1404158669&sr=1-1&keywords=piano+chords+duane+shinn

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How Major and Minor Intervals Combine to Form All Types of 7th Chords

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015
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All Types of 7th Chords Are a Combination of Major & Minor 3rds

How to form all types of 7th Chords with a stack of 3rds.

Click on this link to watch this video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oYoe545rZLs&feature=youtu.be

Good morning. This is Duane and we’ve been doing a series called Good Stuff You Really Ought To Know About Music. One thing you really ought to know about music is how thirds combine, how intervals of thirds combine to form seventh chords. Yesterday, we took up the way that major and minor intervals combine to make triads. If you remember, we define a major third as two whole steps. Whole step, whole step, so that’s a major third. We define as a minor interval, two notes that are a half step less than a major interval, in other words, one, two, three, three half steps instead of four.

A major interval has four half-steps, one, two, three, four. While a minor third has three, one, two, three. We’ve said that to form a major chord, you have a major third on the bottom and a minor third on top. If we have a minor chord, then we have a minor third on the bottom and a major third on top. Both of those are balanced, aren’t they? In other words, they have one major third and one minor third or one minor third and one major third. They’re balanced, right? That’s why they’re used so much.

If you have an unbalanced chord, it creates a lot of tension. A lot of tension, for example if I take a major third and put a major third on top of it, that’s a nice chord but it creates tension. It wants to be resolved somehow, doesn’t it? You don’t want to really walk away from that chord and go to bed with that on your mind. Same way with if you’d stack two minor thirds together. IF you have a minor third with another minor third, that creates a lot of tension. That creates our basic four kinds of chords, doesn’t it? Major chord, minor chord, diminished chord and augmented chord, but only the major and minor chords are well-balanced in that they have a minor third and a major third in them.

Now we’re going to take up seventh chords. Today, you know what a seventh chord is, a seventh note of the scale, right? Or the flat seventh note of the scale. If we have a major triad and we add a minor third on top, that’s called a seventh or technically it’s called a dominant seventh. That chord wants to resolve to F, C seventh, one stroke, resolved. It doesn’t always have to, but it usually does. If you have a major third, a minor third and another minor third, that’s a dominant seventh and it wants to go some place.

If on the other hand, you have a minor third with a major third and a minor third, see that’s well balanced, isn’t it? Because you have a minor third on the bottom, major third in the middle, minor third on top. That creates a mellow sound so that’s called a minor seventh chord. That’s a C minor seventh chord. If you have a minor interval, a minor third and a major third and then another major third, that creates a lot of tension too, doesn’t it? Because it’s unbalanced, it’s got two major thirds in it and only one minor third. The balanced intervals are more, I’ll call them stable than the unbalanced intervals.

Now we can also have a diminished, a minor third and a minor third if we take another minor third, we’d have to double flat that B, wouldn’t we? What we’d end up with is a diminished seventh chord. I know it looks like a sixth but in music theory, you’d have to call it a diminished seventh chord. Look what that is? It’s a minor third with a minor third with a minor third and a minor third. It’s all minor thirds, isn’t it? It’s very unbalanced and that’s why it creates that. You often hear that in movies or TV shows when they’re building up tension. You’ll hear diminished seventh chords.

Let’s see. I guess that’s it. You could have a major third, a major third and a minor third and that’s a very little-used chord but it’s possible, that’s a C augmented major seventh. C-major seventh with a raised fifth, equivalent to the augmented chord. That’s how major and minor thirds are combined to form sevenths. Tomorrow, we’ll take up another subject and hope to see you there. If you’re not already signed up for our free newsletter, free series of videos, come on over to playpiano.com and sign up for them. Hope to see you there. Bye bye for now.

***For lots more good stuff on piano playing come on over to my website at http://www.playpiano.com and sign up for our free piano tips – “Exciting Piano Chords & Sizzling Chord Progressions!”

Here’s a great little book on chords and chord progressions on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Piano-Chords-Chord-Progressions-Exciting-ebook/dp/B0076OUGDE/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1404158669&sr=1-1&keywords=piano+chords+duane+shinn

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The Commonality Of Chord Progressions In Different Musical Genres

Monday, September 21st, 2015
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Chord Progressions – What They Have In Common

Click on this link to watch this video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGZeGYRzdP0&feature=youtu.be

In our video today we are looking at the commonality of chord progressions over a wide variety of musical styles. Here is a transcription of the video in case you would like to follow along.

Good morning, this is Duane. We have been doing a series called Good Stuff You Really Ought To Know About Music. One thing you ought to know about music is the commonality of chord progressions from style to style or genre to genre. In other words, it doesn’t matter whether it’s classical or rock or jazz or whatever it is, you’re going to have exactly the same chord progressions. Let me just give you an example.
I just played Für Elise, a little sloppy Für Elise, but it was Für Elise, and it just used two chords. Beethoven used the A minor chord and the E 7th chord. That’s it, okay? That far. Of course, it goes on to other chords, but the theme is just two chords, A minor and E 7th.

Now listen to this … Again, that was sloppy too. Okay? Same two chords, A minor, E7th, A minor. E 7th, A minor. Same chord progression exactly.

Now listen to this … Then it goes on to something else, but listen, same two chords, A minor, and this time, instead of E major, it’s E minor, okay? Just two chords, A minor and E minor. Exactly the same chord, of course they used different extensions, you know, 6 and 7s and so on, it depends on the genre there, but … the style can be completely different, but the chords can be exactly the same, same basic chords. So there is three examples, one from classical music, one from praise music, and one from, say the blues or pop music, Summertime.
Okay, that’s it for today, just a little something more you ought to know about music. It doesn’t matter what kind of music it is, the same chord progressions are in play. Thanks for being with me, and if you enjoyed this series, come on over to playpiano.com and sign up for an entire series. Hope to see you there, bye-bye for now.

***For lots more good stuff on piano playing come on over to my website at http://www.playpiano.com and sign up for our free piano tips – “Exciting Piano Chords & Sizzling Chord Progressions!”
Here’s a great little book on chords and chord progressions on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Piano-Chords-Chord-Progressions-Exciting-ebook/dp/B0076OUGDE/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1404158669&sr=1-1&keywords=piano+chords+duane+shinn
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