A radical, common-sense and empowering approach to learning piano
Gain powerful, fluent musicianship skills: play by ear; improvise; see a new piece of sheet music and hear it playing in your mind, without difficult theory or aural training
How to Play Piano Fluently
Musical fluency is the ability to play any music that you can imagine instantly and spontaneously. It’s the same idea precisely as fluency (and literacy) in language. To acquire fluency in the language of music, you need 2 things:
- a simple, comprehensive model of rhythmic and tonal principles and elements (this course provides that)
- the passion and humility to play at the level of a child (the course offers coaching to persuade you to focus and let go, but ultimately, it’s up to you)
So you will need to be ready to apply self-enquiry to the process. There is no elaborate theoretical or executive learning involved. Merely following instructions or linear steps obediently is not enough. Thinking is largely redundant. This is a 100% practice-based course and the concepts involved are very simple to understand. Yet to work in such a basic way can be hard for adults. To play like children with wonder and without expressive inhibition is a serious challenge upon which success depends completely. You have to let go of prior learning and approach this course not merely with the mindset of a beginner but also that of a child. Do you have the courage and humility to do that?
Make your music with effortless flair and spontaneity. Grasp how musical patterns work to gain an extraordinary command of the piano keyboard.
Understand music deeply and intuitively
As children we learned basic things, colours, shapes, numbers, letters, words and all the familiar objects in our world. That is how you must learn to use the principles and elements of music. If you listen to music and enjoy it, you already have a passive or unconscious grasp of musical language. Your inner musician was trained from birth and it is powerful. It understands the deep meanings that music conveys. You must trust your inner musician completely. This course points you towards the kind of focused practice that will set your inner musician free.
Most people, including the majority of trained musicians, lack real musical fluency. A fluent musician can:
IMPROVISE – Make up music on the spot without any pre-existing melody or chord sequence etc.
PLAY BY EAR – Play any music we can remember (fluency is not the ability to recall music – most of us already have this ability after hearing a piece of music enough times)
SIGHT READ FLUENTLY – Look at an unfamiliar score and hear it playing in our imagination just as we can all subvocalise and understand words as we read
What about perfect pitch or being tone deaf – don’t we need aural training to be fluent?
Aural training just makes you good at aural tests. It doesn’t make you fluent. The only people who benefit from aural training are already confident in their aural skills. Intervals, chords, scales, time signatures, note values etc. – these are all elements that the brain processes far too slowly for musical fluency. This course teaches you tonal and rhythmic elements that are instantly recognisable and which you can use to express yourself effortlessly.
The truth is, we all have perfect pitch. Yes you read the right! Unless you are one of the tiny percentage of people who suffer from genuine tone-deafness – a rare condition – you have pretty good tonal memory. Studies show that when we recall music we know – a favourite performance of a song or piece of music – we hear it playing in our heads in the right key, not the wrong one. Absolute pitch is of ittle importance anyway, it is a sense of tonal relationships or a map of tonality that we must develop.
The karaoke approach to music is quite normal but it needs to be replaced. Instead of being familiar with certain songs or pieces, we can instead learn to tag tonal or harmonic elements that are used in all music. “Tag” means know and love deeply as meaningful musical elements that make sense – not only aurally but as physical, spatial structures within a clear map of our instrument, in this case the keyboard. We must also learn to tag rhythmic elements, although oddly, people rarely see their poor rhythmic awareness as an issue. This common error will block fluency. Tonal fluency is not possible without being equally fluent in the language of rhythm. So rhythm training forms a major part of the work you do on this course.
Learn to play the piano with clear focus, in a state of flow! Grasp musical structure & patterns & play effortlessly from your body & soul to set your musical creativity free!
There are a few people who can improvise or play by ear with some degree of fluency without knowing how they do it. This talent is not something most people can ever aspire to. Unfortunately, we tend to revere such dark talents in our culture and generate a disempowering mystique around fluent musical skills. Being consciously fluent is better anyway, as it means you have a far greater capacity for lifelong learning.
Most people who learn using the conventional passive approach sound stiff and inexpressive
This sad truth is only made worse when we encounter another dark talent – the rare ability to play with musical flair when you lack any fluent grasp. The art of mimicry is a fascinating knack that a few people possess. Only a tiny minority can learn music in the conventional theory/technique-based way using repetitive rehearsing practice that generates muscle memory, and sound good. But with the fluent grasp of musical language that this course offers, you can play with flexibility, expressiveness and natural feel.
Isn’t fluency an advanced skill?
It can be but it also works at a very simple level. You can be fluent using just a few musical elements. This course is not designed to make you into a virtuoso although it might well help unblock that path for you if you put in the necessary hours. Rather, fluency in music is like fluency in language. It is a basic skill. Being able to speak, read and write does not in itself make you a great poet. Whether you become a great artist depends on your sensitivity and passion for music. But sadly, so many people who just want to enjoy expressing themselves musically – at whatever level – feel shut out because of their lack of fluent expressive skill. This course offers those skills and is therefore basic musical empowerment.