Welcome to the central directory for all the articles (over 200) on the site that discuss specific tips for music (especially piano). I have been doing this now for five or six years and the sheer amount of information has gotten a bit overwhelming. Don’t stress or despair; my advice is to go make yourself a cup of coffee, relax, and take your time.
The advantage of these free lessons is that they are free. There is an enormous amount of information here. The disadvantage of a repository of articles like this is that the information is not really organized in a very structured way. If you read for a while and start longing for a step-by-step approach to learning these things, I recommend my courses.
The search tool over to the right may be helpful if you are looking for specific things. It searches every blog article I have ever written (more than 1,000) and like any search engine, it is not perfect.
What is the methodology of these lessons and who are they for?
The main focus of these lessons is on teaching musicians to be creators and improvisors. Rather than only being able to replicate music that is in front of you, I want you to develop very important and critical skills that are extremely valuable in professional music, church music and essentially every other kind of music that exists (other than the classical concert hall).
While you will find some philosophical and abstract stuff here, most of these lessons are strongly rooted in 20th Century theory. The development of modern theory as is widely used today came mostly from modern classical composers and jazz musicians. That being said, while I use that foundation, I am not teaching either classical music or jazz here. While most of the music referenced in the lessons is church music, the concepts apply to basically any kind of music you want to play.
I aim these lessons at musicians who play at least at an intermediate level and have at least a rudimentary knowledge of theory. If you find yourself over your head in a lesson, just take it very slow or move on to something else for a while. If you need to know the basics of playing the piano, check out these two classes that you can take online.
Top 10 Lessons (My recommendations)
Here are some of my favorite lessons from the past few years to get you started.
Analyzing “Hiding in Thee” Part 1 | Analyzing “Hiding in Thee” Part 2
What makes a melody good or bad
Reharmonization of “Silent Night”
Year-long project: Circle of fifths
The ii/IV – V/IV – IV progression
Transitioning between songs
A simple tip for congregational accompaniment
A new way of looking at scales
Sight-reading: How to read ahead
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